My current FAL list had a new item on it this time, which feels quite unusual as I seem to roll over the same projects quarter after quarter: a small quilt/wall hanging which I made when I hadn't been quilting long (the label says I finished it in 2008) and which hung above my stairs. It's the second quilt I made and is the first one which was machine pieced:
The problem with it smacked me between the eyes every time I looked at it (which was at least a dozen times a day!) and slowly but surely drove me batty(/battier). I'm sure you've already spotted it but, just in case you haven't, I'll tell you: the border was wavy, the corners weren't square and it didn't hang right due to a combination of the aforementioned waviness and me taking notice of a blog post about 'I don't make hanging sleeves for quilts, I put hanging triangles in the corners'. As someone who detests making hanging sleeves (even back at the beginning of this hobby!), this really appealed to me. What I didn't know is that (corner) hanging triangles only really work if you're hanging a very small quilt. I had to tack a partial sleeve between the triangles so that the weight of the quilt was more evenly distributed and pin a few tucks into the hanging triangles so that the weight of the quilt (which isn't significant) didn't drag the quilt out of shape. I was only partially successful but I hung it up and called it done, faults and all.
The day came (somewhere around November last year) when I couldn't stand it for a moment longer. I contemplated throwing out the quilt or donating it to the dogs' home but then realised that I was still rather fond of it, just not the wavy borders and not-square corners. It was then I decided that a touch of surgery would be in order and that listing it on my FAL list would give me the impetus I needed to get the scalpel out. (Not literally but only because I don't have one. If I did, I definitely would have used it, I'm sure!)
I washed and dried it (it had been hanging on the wall since 2008 with just the occasional shake/hoover to get rid of the dust!) and then unpicked the binding and set it aside to re-use later. Then came a few days of dithering over whether to remove both borders or just the wavy navy one. In the end I cut off the navy border and had a good look at it with just the narrow aqua border before deciding that I wanted to have the blocks going to the edge of the quilt (even though it does make the binding a touch harder as there are points which could be lost) and got the unpicker back out. At this stage it started to look a little sad but there was a glimmer of hope in there somewhere:
I sorted the binding (pressed it open, starched it and then re-pressed it in half) and stitched it on, being careful with the points. I decided that blocking would up my chances of it hanging flat(tish) on the wall and so got to work. Usually, I pin the item out when it's dry and then lay a well-wrung cloth over (this is my preferred method of blocking fabric and yarn items) but decided that the quilt needed to be washed again now the wavy borders had been removed as they were probably pulling the blocks out of line and a wash would help get rid of that distortion, and if it was going to be wet then I may as well block while wet!
And then re-hung it on the wall (after a friend's husband chopped 6" off the dowel for me):
It's taken me a while to get used to the smaller quilt up there but it's much better than it was and it's far better than an empty wall. I even managed to incorporate the original label on the back so it has two finish dates: 2008 (on the label) and 2015 (on the binding)!
The finishes link-up for this quarter is now open, so I'm linking up with Adrianne:
We're having a mini heatwave (and yes, I'm complaining about it! I don't complain about it being really cold or raining for a solid fortnight in January, I save it for the summer!) and Archie is torn between enjoying the sunshine (mainly on the front garden, which means I can't be away from the front window for more than a couple of minutes in case he takes it upon himself to wander onto the road or next door's garden) and doing the dog equivalent of sitting inside with all the windows open and the curtains closed:
|It's too hot!!|
|Hello, Mrs Bee!|
This is one of his favourite places to lay in the back garden as he can see up the path and through the gaps in the gate to the road out the front. If he's in the back and he's not on this spot then he'll be stood at the gate, either with his nose poked through a gap or trying to see if it will open with the application of a paw and some serious staring...
|You don't need to take a photo of almost the entire garden...|
The garden is taking shape, if you ignore the blue trug of pebbles and the blocks seemingly scattered round - they're marking out where I'm getting another raised bed (the ground there is dreadful and 'poorly draining' doesn't quite go far enough as a description so the only solution is a raised bed), once the landscaper gets back to me with a quote and has a gap in his diary. I'm hoping it will be built by the autumn (I have plants to put in it!) but I'm not in a huge rush. (Although if he said he could do it tomorrow, I'd snap his hand off!)
|...because I'm the star turn: you just need a photo of me! Honestly, you just can't get the staff these days *tuts*|
Thanks for popping in, I hope you're doing well with your FAL list - don't forget to link up all your finishes before the linky closes (on 6th July at 11pm PST. I think that's 7am on 7th July for us in the UK but I'm not completely certain so you're probably better off linking up before the deadline is imminent!)
I'm off to lie down in a darkened room - shout me when it starts to rain, will you?!!