Scinteallate #16: a glorious constellation

It’s done, finished.

Scinteallate is bound and labelled, and waiting for me to hear where and when to deliver it. The photos have been sent, I’ve hit the deadline, and I feel a big sense of relief.

I did a lot of work on this quilt when I was feeling fairly bloody average, so I’m glad none of that shows. It looks great, team, fantastic work from all of you. The Nude Lunch is on 6th September, so we won’t know till after that how much it raised at auction, but I’ve asked to be kept informed so I can let you all know.

For those who are interested, a few stats:  Design and call to action 12th May. Quilt completed 9th August, a whisker under three months! Blocks contributed by (in no particular order) Robin Murphy, Nanette Gilbert, Margaret Creek, Lynn Hutton, Sharon Sabin, Lynda Swink, Gun Adrian, Sue Brown, Kerry Davidson, and me. Techniques include foundation paper piecing, traditional piecing, appliqué and Quilt As You Go. It was quilted and assembled on a domestic Janome DC3018 sewing machine and I got through two 800m reels of Gütermann cream thread.

To the new members of the team: it was great having you on board, and it would be lovely to have you participate in the next ovarian cancer quilt, if you’re up for it.

And now, I’m going to go and clear away all the snippets of teal fabric and thread, de-fuzz the design wall, and get out something completely different to play with 🙂

Till next time.

 

Scinteallate #15: the inspector approves

The Quilt Inspector has been hard at work today.

With thanks to the Husband of Chiconia for holding-up services, and to the Quilt Inspector for encouragement and company

Thanks to his constant attention and encouragement, Scinteallate is all together, despite one decidedly hairy moment in the middle when I realised I’d sewn two medium-sized pieces together wrong way up. Much cursing and reverse stitching of three seams later the problem was rectified. The Inspector suggested a cup of tea and a bickie to calm things down, and he was right. He got a nice liver treat for his helpful idea. Good boy, Mouse.

In spite of, or maybe even because of, the increasingly silly deadline for this quilt, it has come together with remarkably little fuss.

I still have to cut and assemble the binding pieces and machine stitch them down tomorrow morning after my tai chi class.

After that, I have to make the label, and then hand stitch down the binding and attach the label. And then it’s done, and I can deliver it.

Just a couple more days to go, and I’ll make the deadline with the quilt complete 🙂

Scinteallate #14: coming together

I’m getting there.

Just over halfway, 15 of the 25 blocks joined together. I have another block of 6 and another block of 4 to assemble, and then three more seams and it’s done. It’s hanging a bit wonkily in this photo, but is nice and straight in real life. A couple of places where it doesn’t quite, quite line up, but in my view they can have it perfect, or they can have it fast, but not both. Since they’ve chosen fast, I’m getting it done, but it’s not so bad that it offends my eye, and I hope not yours either.

I’m really pleased with that sparkly teal front sashing; the slight glitter of the narrow bands adds to the overall sparkle of this scinteallating quilt! Even the backing supports the theme, with the tiny print of white stars on the cream background. I’ve selected a dark teal splashy batik for the binding, which will frame the whole nicely.

Looks as if I’m on track to get this finished in time to provide photos of the finished item by Friday. I credit my sleek black supervisor with keeping me hard at work! He’s taking his supervisory duties very seriously. So long as there are treats, of course.

Nearly there. Just a few seams to go…

Scinteallate #13: quilting’s done

Another landmark passed.

All the Scinteallate blocks are now quilted and trimmed out. You can get an idea of how the finished texture will look, although the teal sparkly sashing will have quite an impact, I think.

I’ve started to cut the many, many pieces required for the front and back sashing. I planned the cutting quite carefully so that offcuts from the backs of the blocks could be used as sashing on the back. There weren’t quite enough, but still, it helped to cut them as I went. What size you cut and how many depends on how you plan to join the blocks, so that was my first decision. This quilt is a row shorter than my usual size, so I couldn’t go straight to the default process. However, it shouldn’t be too tough; I’m still minimising the number of long, cumbersome seams.

More cutting tomorrow. I’ve found it quite hard to spend a lot of time at it with a pointy black nose suddenly inserting itself under my arm to see what’s happening on the table. High time I got my cutting table up on its blocks to make that a bit more difficult, or there’ll be a nasty accident with a rotary cutter one of these days…

And now I must go and check the cumquat juice…. It sounds like a code phrase in a spy movie, doesn’t it?

Scinteallate #11: over halfway

Lots and lots of wavy lines…

Not a very exciting post, but the quilting is 60% done. In case you’re wondering, I stitched in the ditch around the centre of the Dog Star block, and kept it free of wavy lines. I didn’t want to spoil his doggy beauty, and the square is small enough not to be a problem if un-quilted. Lots of starts and stops, but totally worth it!

I’m in the groove now, and it’s going smoothly. Plenty of bobbins wound so I won’t run out and have to wind more and re-thread the machine. A new can of 505 spray baste. A still day so it doesn’t go everywhere when I spray the blocks. And best of all, a swing seat to sit in while I write this post 🙂 The only way it could be better is if all the blocks were finished.

Soon, I promise.

Scinteallate #10: first line quilted

I’m back on the case, at last.

I’ve lost nearly 2 weeks through being sick with the flu, so it was time to get cracking. I’d originally planned something a little bit more elaborate for the quilting, but having lost the extra time it would have taken, I’ve reverted to my old favourite, Wavy Lines. It does draw up the block a little, but as I’m quilting them all in the same direction, the drawing up will be proportional across the board. The quilt may be a tiny bit off square (a little taller than it’s wide) but not in a bad way.

And I believe I’ve finalised the layout. I’m happy with the way it looks, it feels balanced.

Now I just have to wait until Monday to carry on quilting 😦 I’ve run out of my favourite basting spray, and the shop’s that’s open today doesn’t stock it. And I’m a little bit weary and wobbly still, so perhaps it’s not such a bad thing.

So, 20% done. Give me till the end of the month…

Scinteallate #9: the stars are aligned

The last 4 blocks arrived this morning.

And what beauties they are!  Two from Nanette – I love how the little bird has been framed:

And two from Lynda, who has given us the Dog Star, from the constellation Canis Major. Which just goes to show that I’m not the only one who can pun in fabric. The dog is embroidered in sparkly silver thread, with tiny glittering beads to show the stars of the constellation. Gorgeous!

Half an hour’s intense rearranging of blocks and squinting gives us this, which I think may be the final layout.

Imagine this with a narrow sashing in teal with silvery sparkles on it. I think it’s going to look great! As always, comments please – you may spot something that looks out of place that I haven’t noticed or a substitution that works better. And again as always, I reserve the right to go with my own final decision 🙂

So, everything’s lined up and ready for me to cut backing and backing and then start quilting. We’re on track, my friends, this gorgeous quilt is going to be ready by the deadline, failing any major disasters.

I’ll be back with the first quilting to show you.