Tag Archives: hand quilting

15 Years in the Making

Back when I was in high school, my sophomore year, my sister made me a quilt top of sunflowers, daisies and cats for my Christmas present.

That break she, our mom & I basted it together on the floor of our parents room.

I started hand quilting it immediately. Then school, band & church all caught up with me & the quilt just sat there. So I sent it back to Colorado for my sister to work on. Then she moved back to Texas. Then she had kids & gave me back the quilt. (now keep in mind this isn’t just a quilt we’re sending back & forth, there’s also this huge PVC pipe frame that’s going about half the country). Then time passes & I got my first apartment, and my 2nd and my 3rd.

Still working on the quilt.

Then I graduated from college & realized I’d been working on this project for over 5 years!

Then a few more moves occur & before I know it, I’m in Alaska, married, it’s been 10 years & I’m still working on this quilt.

Then more moves occur & every time I pull it out, I’d hear a groan from J. Yes, once again I was pulling out THE quilt that somehow took up the entire room & would end up as a cat bed.

Then this year I realized I was turning 30 & this darn quilt would have been in progress for 15 years!!! Some women have beauty or youth crises when they turn 30- I however freak out about quilting.

So I was determined to finish it this year! I pulled it out for the umpteenth time & noticed there really wasn’t much more to do- so I set to work.

Then as it happened I went down to Texas & thought I would finish it then (here’s a lesson I should have learned by now- when you go visit your family, you’re not going to have things like TIME to work on quilts!) but after taking a nice little rest in Kansas on my way home, I see that the end is in sight for this quilt.

Last friday, I’m happy to say, I finished it. 3 months before I turn 30

Here are the photos of the finished quilt in all its beauty:
(it’s actually kinda small!)

Close up:

And of course, the requisite pic of the back, so you can see the quilting:

Ahhhh, is there anything nicer than a finished quilt??

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This is a customer’s quilt that I finished quilting this week! I used a simple “block” pattern in each square since this customer doesn’t like heavy quilting. I took advantage of the design software & used the block pattern to create similar patterns for the flying geese & border.

This is something I’ve come to realize I’m very particular about. I like themes. I like all the quilting to have a flow. If a piecer puts all the time & effort into color coordination & patterns, the quilter should make the quilting coordinate. It seems that overall freehand quilters are better at this, but there’s no reason why computerized quilters aren’t just a good.

I’m also hand quilting this quilt. I should clarify. I’ve been hand quilting this for quite some time. My sister actually pieced this for me when I was 15. Yes, you read that correctly. 15. Sophomore in High School. Back when I was a very different Robin. She has just taken a quilting class & make me this top. We had a great idea that we would hand quilt this. Not sure what we were thinking since I was crazy busy with school, band & church (oh yes, I was one of those teens) & she lived in another state. So basically this quilt travelled from Colorado to Texas more times than some people have. In the end I had it (I think she had kids at this point & told me she was never, ever, ever going to be able to work on this again) & then I dragged it around with me.

Fast forward to a few weeks ago & a friend was over in my studio quilting with me. She saw the quilt peeking out of the bag. I dragged it out & told her the story. She pointed out rationally that there really wasn’t much more to do. I eyed the quilt with some doubt & realized she had a point. So after deciding what frame I was going to use (I’ll explain more in another post), I pulled it out & it now sits on half our couch while I quilt about a square a night.

I also realized something. I am almost done. With the squares. Then there are 2 borders. Hmmm….. maybe this really isn’t so close to being finished.