Saturday, February 27, 2016

Mrs. Bannister's Star Finish and a Y-Seam Link Party

More Design On the Fly

Winter light makes it tough to get the shot just right.

After a few hand quilting marathons, this sweet quilt is done. It's another one of my "On the Fly" designs, but the center blocks are from Jen Kingwell's book, Quilt Lovely. 

I grabbed this while my husband was sick so I had something to do at home, and it took about 2 weeks to quilt. It's the first large project I've used Perle Cotton to quilt, and I've had a real go of it. There was just something hinky with the problems I had, and no one else did. I've hesitated about confessing my Big Mistake, but you may enjoy it.

Top strand: #5 Perle Cotton
Bottom strand: #8 Perle Cotton

The #8 is finer, and this is the Perle Cotton most hand quilters use. Some will go finer. The #8 is usually sold in small balls.

The #5 is typically sold in a hank like embroidery or cross stitch floss. I wrote that I was using #8 when all along it was actually #5. Somewhere along the line I got these threads mixed up, and it was an enlightening experience when I found my mistake. Quilting with thicker thread is harder work, most definitely tough to thread the needle, and a real pain to bury the knot. Can you imagine? No wonder I was complaining.

I discovered my mistake while I had half the inner borders done, but I thought I should stick with it to keep everything uniform. I used a coffee cup as a circle template, and traced it with one of the General chalk marking pencils. HINT: It helps to look ahead to see what configuration or path you can take to avoid stopping and starting so often. 

When I got to the outer borders with lots of seams, I switched to the real #8. These 3.5" curved hemostats cost $2 at a local antique mall. Even pulling #8 Perle Cotton got tough when my hands were tired, and they really did an excellent job of getting the needle through.

 The binding is from my stash, and cut on the bias. I normally use a straight cut binding of 2.25", but the rounded corners dictated a bias cut. It was a cinch. 

I hate the amount of time hand binding takes, and chose to machine sew this also. As a benefit, I know my stitching on the edges is very secure. We're zoomed in pretty close here, and it's not easy to tell.

Mary Huey Quilts

I'm linking up with a brand new link party at Quilting Through Rose-colored Trifocals. Mary Huey has a dvd on chain piecing Y-seams which I've found very helpful, and opened her first linky this weekend. Pop in to check it out, and link up your Y-seam projects.

I have a laundry list of things to make today so no more dawdling with electronics. I hope you're squeezing in some creative time, too. If you're an Instagramer, tag me @pinkdoxies so I can see what you're doing, too. 

Come on, Doxie girls.
Let's go sew.


  1. Darling little quilt full of color and interest. Love the border too!

  2. This has such a vintage look to it I ♥ it, given anything with a needle and thread has me challenged I do admire anyone who can do a stella job hand quilting :)

  3. Congratulations! This quilt is a real cutie. It is bright and happy. Great job! ;^)

  4. Thanks for linking up at Y-Seam Warriors, Julie -- so pleased to see this quilt finished!Yeah, you!!

  5. This is a great piece. I can't wait for spring and better light for taking photos.

  6. Nice finish, Julie! I once used perle 8 on a quilt and it shrunk horribly. (My quilts go in the washer and into the dryer on medium heat.) Could you please let us know how your quilt managed through the washing and drying process? (Unless, of course, you're more gentle with your quilts than I am! (Thanks, in advance.)
    --Nancy. (ndmessier @,

  7. Very nice and coloful quilt you have done, and I like yuor handquilting with Pearl Cotton!
    Wish you a nice Sunday!

  8. This turned out beautiful Julie. Hand quilting and the binding sewn on by machine, I'm just the opposite.

  9. Fabulous finish Julie! Thanks for the thread lesson too =)

  10. Julie, this turned out beautiful. Discovering your thread mix up, really does explain quite a bit. Who would have thought there would be such a big difference between a #5 and #8. I love that you used the coffee cup for a template. When looking for the perfect circle, I always search around the house.

  11. Beautiful 'On the Fly' quilt! I love using Perle's and keep small pliers nearby when big-stitching. I have also used size 8 for finishing binding, it goes faster and I loved the result:)

  12. Hey Julie - I just found your quilt as I randomly looked at other blogs - linked from Sarah Craig's. Neat! I just love this network of quilters, and the sharing of their daily quilty lives.

  13. Pretty quilt! I like the quilting even if you did use the wrong type of thread. Since I've never done any perle cotton quilting I would never have noticed if you hadn't said anything. I want to try sometime though, so I'm taking notes.

  14. Thank you thank you for your inspiration and link to the Show and Tell Monday !! Bambi Hug

  15. It's a lovely finish, thread problems or not. Thanks for linking to TGIFF.

  16. I'm wowed by your rounded triangle corners! The whole quilt is beautiful!

  17. Your quilt is quite beautiful! I love how the outer border is a reminder of the triangles we see in the centre block. And using that many different fabrics brings everything together, in my opinion. I'm sorry to read that your hand quilting work has been difficult.
    Thank you for participating to my Fabric, Thread and Yarn link party. Have a good weekend!

  18. What a lovely finish! I have just the linky party for this post, given that you're confessing to your "Big Mistake". Please join in the fun at my Lessons Learned Linky:


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