Monday, September 19, 2016

Piecing 101

Inspired by Sharon Wright's lecture/class when she visited CO West Quilt Guild in March, I pieced a back for my Mom's Amish quilt.  I had a lot of black fabric left over since I didn't do the appliqué borders, but not enough for the whole back, so I used pieces of the solid colors on the edge and pieced this back. I like how it turned out!

Normally I do not like to piece backs.  By the time I get the top all pieced, the last thing I want to do is piece a back, even if it's just sewing a seam down the middle to piece two large pieces together! I just don't want to do it, but of course I almost always have to at least sew two large pieces together.  It makes sense however to piece backs if you have a lot of fabric left over from the quilt top, because 1. You're putting it to good use and 2. You don't have to go out and buy more fabric (even though it is fun to buy fabric - it's not as much fun to buy backing fabric :)
This pieced back took a little planning.  I figured out how big it needed to be and cut the colored rectangles on the edges accordingly.  Then I made a huge mistake.  One of the first things we learn in quilting is to MEASURE your borders and MEASURE the center of your quilt and MATCH those measurements and sew careful, so you don't end up with WAVY borders.  Well, I was essentially just adding borders to the black middle and I just sewed them on the black fabric WITHOUT MEASURING and ended up with a LOT of wavy black fabric in the middle.  You can tell how bad it is in the photo above, but I knew if I left it, I would end up with puckers when I quilted it....

So, here I am unpicking both sides of the quilt back, MEASURING and resewing carefully.  I don't know why I am smiling in this picture because it was NOT fun.

Just as you cannot see all the waviness in the top photo, you can't really tell how much better it looks in this photo, but trust me - it does!  And when I quilt it, I will be so glad I took the time to "un-sew".  Where is my youngest son when I need him?  He is very handy with a seam ripper :)

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