Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Custom Christmas Quilt Finish

Intensive Custom Quilting

There is tremendous satisfaction in finishing a beautiful quilt, and I felt both exhausted and pleased at the same time with this one made by Connie Karlowicz. Custom quilting is a marathon experience. It takes a great deal of pacing, perseverance, and attention to detail for everything to come out right. And then there is the artistic element, the combination of designs, and hope that everything you've chosen works where it should, and supports the rest. I find it a little daunting at times.

I learn something with each of these special quilts. I don't want to say it's a hiccup with each one, but I always walk away humbled. My design plans may be  solid, but it's hard to account for everything before I first drop my needle.

I had 2 such issues with this project. One was choosing the wrong color thread for the border. Less than a minute of stitching took 90 minutes of ripping to clear. I have made it a rule to never get upset about ripping. I smile, put on some happy music, and just do it. It's all attitude, and a part of this kind of work. 

The second was how to handle the quilting in the frames around the cross-hatching. I tried many design options on my computer ahead of time, but nothing was narrow enough to work. If it filled the border space, it would infringe on the center. I finally landed on this design; 4 individual borders that nested together as a frame. It isn't much different than planning a quilt border, but I was mentally hung up on thinking it should be one unit. When I got past that thinking, it was a snap. It was a valuable lesson.

Materials List

The cross-hatching thread is Superior's MonoPoly in Smoke. Only use clear monofilament on white. Everything else works best with Smoke, and cuts down on the light reflection. The light thread is Glide 40# in cream, and the green is Superior Threads Omni 50#. Bobbin thread is So Fine 50# by Superior Threads. Batting is Pellon 80/20, and I work on a Handi Quilter Pro-Stitcher Premium computerized longarm system.

I love what I do.💗

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Thank you, and Happy Quilting!
Come on, Doxie girls.
Let's go sew.



Rebecca Grace said...

This came out great, Julie! It seems like computerized custom quilting involves retraining your brain to learn how to "speak computer." All of your final choices for borders, sashing, and crosshatching look great on this quilt, and that's an interesting tip about the smoke monofilament. I'd heard the opposite -- to use clear monofilament on everything except for dark fabrics. But especially with this quilt, I can see how it is more important for the monofilament stitches to disappear on the dark poinsettias and, if the stitches are a little more visible on the background, that's okay because that's where the crosshatching is adding beautiful texture rather than competing with a print. At least that's how it seems in the photos. In any case, it's a job well done. On to the next one! :-)

Linda Swanekamp said...

Well, it certainly was a wallop of work! Turned out very professional. Never tried to quilt with monofilament thread. Congratulations!

WeedyMama said...

Beautiful. If I had quilted it and it came out looking as it does, I would have a hard time returning it to the maker.

patty a. said...

The quilting is beautiful - well done! I do like the leaf design you used in the sashing border a lot. It fills in the space nicely.

Angie in SoCal said...

What a tour de force! Congratulations. We learn as we do.