Sunday, February 24, 2013

Memento Quilt - finis!

I have fi-nally finished the memento quilt I've been working on and couldn't be happier! The fabrics were a true treasure to work with and have left an amazing quilt top. I always underestimate how long these will take and my husband suggested I quantify it, so maybe next time I won't blithely suggest I can get this done in three months.

Yes, this means you have to stick with me through facts and figures (or, you know, just scroll down to the piccies). Before anything else I had to start with measuring allt he emblems, appliques or focal images on all the garments to find out what the average size was and what sort of block would work best. Fortuantely, there were only two very small images and only two very large ones, and the rest all worked themselves happily at about 4.5" square.

You should be able to see in this image the template plastic, marked with centering lines from each corner, over the image of the house:

Of course, part of what takes so long is my underestimating how long it will take to cut (and fussy cut!) that many 4.5" patches.  42 blocks, plus one for the back means over 300 patches.  Oy.

An additional element of difficulty comes with handling infant and toddler clothes: there's not always that much real estate, fabric-wise.    There's quite a few patches that were cut so close to the edge the seam allowance includes the stitches of cuff or ribbing.

Then, of course, there's the pinning. Miles and miles (and miles) of pinning:

One of the basic things I tell all beginning sewistas is to always pin more than you think you need to.  Because you really need to.

It was absolutely worth it in the end:

Having so many different fabrics makes an all-over stitching pattern preferable, as it unifies the top, across all the various colours and textures.  Rather than a stipple or loop that goes all over everything, we went with a traditional diagonal within each block, excluding any appliques:

The texture on the reverse actually makes me giddy - It's a delight to behold!
Oh, and that big number I know you're waiting for - 14,066 feet of thread.  That's right, between top and bobbin threads that's nearly three 500-yard spools!

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