The sewing room is a bit messy but that's the sign of a bit of work getting done for a change.
On the wall you can see my Drunkards Path bright quilt that I started in the spring using some bright fabric my mum gave me as a gift last Christmas. The quilt was in danger of getting tossed in the corner because I have another Girl quilt in my head that I want to get started on. So I am on a mission to finish this one. I hate UFOs. They clog up your head and there is too much stuff clogging up my head.
The quilt is 40 inches by 52 so quite small, a lap quilt really.
I think the smaller circles added after the initial piecing, work really well. They were really easy to make using a simple four patch and a cardboard circular template.
Make up a simple four patch making sure you align your seams up as above to ensure the points meet in the middle.
Iron the back nice and flat to avoid any unwanted bulk later.
I placed the cardboard template on the back of the four patch and dotted around it about half an inch. This is where it will be cut. Anything smaller than half an inch is far too fiddly to work with.
Sew a seam of small stitches all around the edge of the circle. It is important to keep them small as big stitches result in the circle being out of shape and not gathered in well. Also, do not knot the thread. You need a length of thread at the beginning of the stitching as well as at the end, because this is what you tie to gather the circle in. Use strong thread. Test it before hand to make sure it won't break when pulled.
Place the cardboard template onto the circle before gathering. This can be a fiddle but worth it in the end. Pull the two ends of thread together and tie. It should look like this. The bulldog clip is helpful at the tying stage.
Iron the cardboard covered circle with a hot iron on a hard surface. I use a piece of clean wood. The hard surface gives a better edge to the circle. Then remove the cardboard. It should be easy enough to get out and the circle will stay in shape.
I finally stitch around the edge with biggish tacking stitches to keep the circle in shape until it's ready to be sewn in place. I love circles and could make them all day. I have used them a lot recently in my quilts.
Today I decided to sew the circles on to the quilt by machine, just to speed things up a bit. I tried blanket, satin and finally running stitch, but have ended up hating the end result. The blanket and satin stitch were far too loud and jumped right out at me. They were messy in places too. And the running stitch above is yuck!
So I am going to sit quietly and reflectively and sew them all on by hand like this one. So much better. I have used DMC50, a lovely fine thread, and you can barely see the stitches. So that's what will be keeping me busy for the next days and probably weeks. I can plan my next quilt in my head while I'm stitching. xxx