Thursday, January 16, 2014

Quilting Morning, Noon and Night in the New Year

Fun selection of grey and teal prints for new quilt
A new year called for a new quilt project.  Terry Atkinson's Morning, Noon and Night seemed the perfect project to kick off 2014.  I am still in love with the color teal, and I've been using greys for backgrounds and negative space.  So I decided to follow Terry's color selection and had lots of fun pulling out a fun selection of assorted teal and grey prints from my stash.  In fact, I had enough variety of fabrics to create the queen sized quilt.  In fact, all the fabrics (quilt top, backing and binding) are from my stash (so I am using what's already in my studio--go new year's resolutions!!)

I've made several Terry Atkinson patterns so I greatly appreciate her easy-to-follow directions and how quickly these projects come together!  In fact, it only took a day to pull out, iron and cut the fabrics, and then assemble the blocks and another day or so to layout the blocks and assemble into rows and columns for a completed quilt top.  Not until I laid out all the blocks did I fully comprehend how large this quilt would become!  So much for my new mantra of working small!
Serpentine Quilting Lines--15 hours total
Instead of FMQing this quilt, I decided to put on the walking foot and use the Bernina Stitch #4 on maximum width size and 3.5 stitch length to create a gentle serpentine lines.  I decided to do a serpentine line every 1/2" and totally underestimated how much time and/or thread this would involve!  

I timed just one line of serpentine quilting at 5 minutes, and with a 90" quilt, I calculate that over 900 minutes or 15 hours were required to quilt the entire quilt top!  Boy, did this quilt live up to its name as I literally quilted it morning, noon and night!  I paced myself to do an hour or so of quilting in the morning before work, 20 minutes during my lunch break and another hour or two before bedtime.  I couldn't believe how the hours just passed away as I found the quilting process very meditative, as the needle wandered back and forth the full length of the quilt top. 

And I naively purchased just one 500 yard spool of Superior brand King Tut Angel Teal.  It was the perfect selection as it appeared slightly grey when quilted on the teal fabrics, and slightly teal on the grey fabrics for a slight contrast!  And best of all, my machine seemed to like this new thread and didn't give me any tension woes or thread breakages...alleluia!!!  In fact, I've already ordered some more Superior thread to add to my thread collection, along with their thread color charts to have as a reference for future quilting projects.  The only glitch I did experience was totally underestimating how much thread needed to finish all the quilting!  I kept sending Doug out to my favorite LQS to pick up just one more spool!  All in all, there are well over 1000 yards of thread.  But it was all worth it as I love the finished look and texture.  

For the binding, I decided to add a pop of bright orange fabric and worked like a maniac to hand stitch it in just 2 days!  All that is left is to create the label before it is shipped off to Virginia as a gift for my younger male cousin who is in high school.  I just hope it is masculine and modern enough for a teenage guy!  But here are some pics of the finished quilt...     

Teal fabrics transitioning into light teal, light grey and finally dark grey
Serpentine bike rack design parallels the serpentine quilting
More orange and grey for the quilt back
Just one quarter of the entire quilt--mostly Greys
Another quarter of the quilt--mostly Teals
Photographed during early morning, hence some of the shadows cast across the surface
Morning, Noon and Night is officially my first start and finish of 2014!!

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