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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Improv Pieced Backing- Sunning by the Pool

In the spirit of resourcefulness, (and since the top was made from leftovers as well), I decided to piece the backing for my Giant Log Cabin Quilt entirely from stash.  Since the whole attitude of this quilt has been "just grab and sew" I decided to try my hand at improvisational piecing.  This means I didn't touch my rotary cutter and I didn't measure anything during this process.  Check it out!

(Click HERE for the tutorial for the quilt top if you missed it!  Grab and sew is a beautiful thing!)



I'm pleased with the end result, but I must say, it was a bit harrowing!  When piecing the quilt top, I at least knew where I was going with it, and which direction I needed to sew.  This totally "willy-nilly" way of sewing is something that will take some getting used to.

Basting with this improv backing was also a little (okay, very) tricky, and I dislike basting on the best of days.  Since I was sewing some irregular pieces, my seams weren't 100% perfect (shhhh...don't tell the quilt police!) which made taping the back down without wrinkles a real pain in the behind.  I just kept plugging along though, pulling and smoothing in every direction.  If you've seen Finding Nemo, you'll understand what I mean when I say that "just keep smoothing...just keep smoothing" was running through my head.  All in all, the whole taping down the back ordeal took over an hour!

I ended up getting it decently smooth-not smooth by my usual standards, but sometimes you have to realize your limitations.  So, I decided to quilt in squares radiating out from the center of the quilt.  I have found that to be one of the best quilting patterns to outwit the puckers that always try to make their way onto my quilt when my backing isn't completely perfect- and it worked!  Victory over puckers, those little devils!

After all of that, look what I managed to do on the binding-


Sometimes you're the windshield, and sometimes you're the bug I guess.  I cannot believe I did that!  Seriously!  How did that happen?  I swear I cut my strips in the same direction.  Too bad I didn't even notice it until the binding was completely on the quilt, while I was outside taking pictures.  

Let this be a cautionary tale- if you're using a directional print for the binding, always make sure it's going the same direction in each binding strip!  (it's best to recognize this before the quilt is finished) 

I decided to call this one Sunning by the Pool.  The oranges remind me of umbrellas and beach towels against the clear blue water of a swimming pool.


By the way, I did succeed in my goal of making a quilt from start to finish only using things I had on hand!  Maybe that means I tend overbuy fabric for my projects?  hmmm...  Still that's definitely a win for me, and after the backing and binding fiascos, I'll take it!




35 comments:

  1. Congratulations! It looks fantastic. Loosy Goosy job well done!

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  2. That is a beautiful quilt - front and back Kelly. That is funny about the binding - but it gives it character, right? And goes along with the scrappy theme.

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  3. this is great! Front and back are equally beautiful!

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  4. Congrats on only using your stash. Looks great! Love the colour scheme.

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  5. I love it! Is is so pretty and summery!!!
    Esther
    esthersipatchandquilt at yahoo dot com

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    1. Thanks Esther! I'm glad you like it!

      :) Kelly

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  6. That is an extra cool quilt, even the binding mishap! And hey, now it has a story behind it. :)

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  7. I love this! And I like your strategy of quilting in a way that would smooth out the puckers. Very smart.

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    1. Thank you so much for your comment! I knew that if I went with stippling, it wouldn't be pretty on the back when I finished.

      :) Kelly

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  8. Wow, Kelly! I hardly recognize your blog now. It's great. I love the improvements! Especially the banner and tabs. How did you make the tabs? Please share in an email! Your quilt looks wonderful sunning itself by the pool (even if you don't have a pool in the photo). And the binding "so called mistake" is a plus! It is a new twist on that scrappy binding idea. Love it!

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  9. wow, seriously impressed and ty for the link to the tut. I think I would like to give this a try sometime!

    I am stopping by from the WIP post, hop by if you get a chance! http://domesticdeficitdisorder.blogspot.com/2013/06/wip-wednesday-june-12th-edition.html

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  10. I couldn't even find the problem with the binding, even knowing there was one! Maybe I need my eyes checked!? Both the front and back are beautiful.

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  11. Replies
    1. Thank you so much for your comment! I'm so glad you like it!

      -Kelly

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  12. so you have a point of interest on the binding? i think that's cool! and your improv back is awesome sauce, too. another great quilt, kelly.

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  13. Wow, this quilt is even more beautiful in the sunlight. Love that backing as well as the quilting.

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  14. Love your quilt! The quilting really compliments the top and I think ties the backing together well!

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  15. This is looking fantastic! I've never been brave enough to grab and sew but this is beautiful! Maybe I should try it :)

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  16. What a gorgeous quilt!! I love it when quilt backs are as lovely as the fronts, it feels like two quilts in one!

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  17. I love the colours, Kelly. I hear you on the basting process -- it's my least favourite too. Great finish! Thanks for linking up to TGIFF!

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  18. This quilt is awesome - great job! But the back is... swoon... I'm in luuurve!

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  19. I think no one will notice the binding oopsie:) It looks great! Good for you in not cutting any fabric and just sewing it all together! Sounds fun:):):)

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  20. Oh I really like this! Especially the log cabin-esque side. Fun!

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  21. It is a great quilt, and I think you probably learned a lot doing it, both sides of it. And I kind of like the oddball binding. Think of it as an Amish Mistake.

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  22. Love the straight line quilting!

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  23. The large log cabin quilt is such a great idea... a fun, quick and easy way to make a kids/baby quilt. Thanks for the inspiration.

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  24. That looks good enough to be a the front of a quilt!
    Carol

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  25. I think I would just call the binding a "design decision." Looks good to me, and adds a little more interest to an already great quilt!

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  26. Is it OK if I like the backing more than the front! It's fab.

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  27. visiting from sew darn crafty. This is amazing, I love it.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you very much! I am glad you like it.

      :) Kelly
      ps- you're showing as a no-reply blogger, so I'm answering here!

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  28. Great idea for a quilt! I feel the need to steal.

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  29. Love the idea, lets make it a QAYG! Get backing and batting together. Sew the center square on and then go around it. Wouldn't that work?

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