Sunday, 25 March 2012

A quilting labour of love

It has been a big week in our house. My news is: I've finished my daughter's quilt - my first attempt at quilting - and just in time for her second birthday on Sunday. Its progress had been brought to a screeching halt by the craziness of the last couple of months that has gulped down my evenings leaving little time for the fun creative stuff. Although, it is fair to say that I had left the quilt in a place that was not much fun at all - I had reached an impasse when I came to the last instruction in the pattern I had been faithfully following: the instruction to 'attach the binding'.

I didn't know where to begin. I was following a quilt pattern from the Polkadot Chair blog and she had used satin ribbon for her binding, so that's what I decided to do too. In fairness, she did not recommend it, but I figured, 'how hard could it be?'. I also have the memories of my favourite blanket as a child having a satin binding and so I was keen that my daughter should have the same...

That was until I tried to attach the ribbon to the quilt. It was a nightmare. Being so soft only means that it slides around all over the place and pinning or tacking only damages it. It took me three attempts to learn this and left me despairing of how I would ever finish. The beautiful ribbon lay unpicked and frayed - looking as defeated as I felt.

A couple of months back, I found an off cut of dusty pink cotton with white polka dots and bought it with a vague intention of one day re-tackling the whole binding issue. All I needed was time...

This week, my Danish lesson was cancelled because my teacher was sick, instantly freeing up two precious children-free evenings and I pounced on the opportunity to do get some much needed me-time. I ran at the binding and found a fabulous tutorial on Crazy Mom Quilts that gave clear instructions how to make a binding and how to attach it. It took less than a hour to make a long strip of polka dot bind, I stayed up late one night to machine sew it onto one side of the quilt and then hand stitched the other.

To say I am thrilled would be an understatement. It has been a roller coaster of a quilting adventure but now, seeing my daughter snuggle up with it, I know it was worth every moment.

Oh, and the other big news in our household this week was my son learning to ride his bike without the stabilisers. We are so incredibly proud of his effort and I had the biggest grin on my face as he told me tonight that he now has two favourite things that he loves in the world: his lego and riding his bike.
I did say its been a big week for us ; )