This seems to be the week for “finishes.” The big one, of course, was the Baltimore Album, but I just completed the Friendship Quilt top and it’s ready for machine quilting. I started this project 1 1/2 years ago and it will be ready in time for the October Cocheco Quilt show – another goal met! Linda Bevins, who has machine quilted a few quilts for me in the past and who does a wonderful job, has agreed to quilt it for me so my work is mostly done except for the piping and the binding at the end. I decided to do mitered corners on the borders so am including a little tutorial here on how I do mine. There are several ways to do mitered corners, but this one works for me.
Each border has to have plenty of overlap in order to do mitered corners. As in the above picture, separate the 2 borders.
This is the upper right corner and I want the upper border on top, so I smoothed out the right hand border so the fabric lies very flat and straight.
Then fold the upper border so that there is a 45 degree angle and the outer point of the fold exactly meets the lateral edge of the right hand border. Make sure there are no wrinkles and everything is flat.
Next I pin this into place and applique the edges together. A different technique is to open it up and sew on the crease line with the sewing machine or by hand, but I like the applique method because everything is set in position at this point and the applique doesn’t require me to disturb/move anything. Also, I like hand sewing!
Voila! The mitered corner is complete! For some quilts mitered borders look a lot better; for others it doesn’t matter much – it’s a matter of aesthetics and I decided this quilt needed the mitered borders for a better look. However, when I was finished with the mitering, I didn’t really like the way the corners of the center of the top looked and decided they needed a flower similar to the flowers in the center.
I like using up fabric I already have for the backs of quilts when I am having them machine quilted. Generally I don’t do that when I’m hand quilting because the extra seams make it harder to do the hand quilting. So, for this quilt I sewed together some pieces of fabric I already had instead of buying 3 1/2 yards of one new fabric. With all the fabric I have and need to use up I couldn’t justify that! Here’s a picture of the back:
What’s next? I need to make doll quilt #3 and then quilt all three of them and I’ll have everything ready for the Cocheco show in October. After that I’ll get back to working on Spring Sonata and am looking forward to starting a new project or two!
I was recently reading an interview with the CEO of a company that trains leadership mentors. He was asked what he asks people applying for jobs in his own interviews. One of the things he does is ask them to tell him about a “crucible moment or two” in their lives. I interpret this to mean moments or situations that were of major significance, that involved major decisions or actions. I really love the term “crucible moment” and have had some interesting discussions with my husband and friends on this topic since then. My own “crucible moments” include the decision to go to medical school and become a doctor, the decision to marry Al and commit to lifetime partnership, the decision to have children, and the decision nearly 30 years ago to take the job at the UNH Health Services. My career at UNH was not the career I envisioned when I finished my medical training and was not even a career path I was aware before then, i.e. college health, but it has been challenging and rewarding in so many ways and has been a great career allowing me to practice medicine and still have time for family and personal interests.
When I think more about the idea of “crucible moments” I wonder if I shouldn’t include the decision to make a quilt 20 years ago! I would never have dreamed what that decision has led to. I have completely and thoroughly enjoyed the artistic and construction challenges of making quilts and have spent countless happy hours making quilts. I have also become a member of the quilting community, so to speak, and have made good friends through quilting. I have this blog and my web site devoted to my quilts. Getting involved in quilting has certainly had a pretty major impact on my life!
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