Monday, August 4, 2014

Quilt-along: Big Reveal

Today's the day, my quilt loving friends. It's finally time for my crafty cliffhanger to come to an end. My Quilt-Along project is finished! Only seven months late!

Cue the belated fan fare!

Truth be told, I finished it about a month ago, but at this point, who's counting? I should maybe feel embarrassed that I so grossly underestimated the time it would take me to tackle a project like this, but really, I'm just so excited about how it turned out, and proud of what I made, that I can't really be bothered with the timing.

The planning stage took for-ev-er (which is pretty much my signature move) but then once it came time to making it...that wasn't exactly fast either. But I plugged (and snipped) away, getting pieces and parts done on sporatic evenings until I had two finished sides. After quite a delay, I got some much needed help for the actual quilting portion, and then it sat in a heap (and inside of a moving box) a couple months. Finally I had to kick myself in the butt, and hunker down for the last step: binding. So I cued up some podcasts, and got to work.

I sewed.

 And sewed.

And sewed.

 And sewed some more.

Oh wait. And a little bit more.

It turns out sewing the perimeter of a twin sized blanket, twice (as is required with binding) takes a couple hours. Or at least it does if you're me. But it was at least simpler than I had feared, and at the end of the night, I finally had my pièce de résistance.

But before the dramatic reveal- here's a quick reminder of my final plan.


And here is the finished product. The front:  

And the back:


Ok. That was obnoxious. But I kind of can't even sincerely apologize, because YOU GUYS, I LOVE IT SO MUCH AND I'M SO PROUD AND LET ME SHOW IT TO YOU AGAIN AND AGAIN AND AGAIN, OMG, LET'S SNUGGLE.

But really...It's just turned out exactly like I wanted. Or maybe better. (You'll notice I technically photo'd the front upside down compared to my plan...but you get the gist. I stayed pretty true to my original drawing, just swapping out a few colors here and there, and adding a couple of extra pieces at the last minute.) And super crazy bonus- it matches our new living room perfectly (inherited paint color, but new couch).

See? And if I can suddenly and bizarrely personify the quilt for minute, I'll tell you it has already made friends with our throw pillows! They're like a little textile family!

But let's get to the details. It's hardly the most complicated quilt anyone ever made...but it is by far the most complicated quilt I ever made. mostly because it's only my second quilt, so I give myself license to be proud of every last tiny rectangle that I over-stressed about.

I hadn't planned on doing straight quilting lines on this one (that's what I did on my first one, so it kind of felt like a cop out), but I'm so happy with how it turned out. Maybe a more complicated design would have been cool too, but I dig the simple variegated rhythm, and it seems to fit with the modern vibe of the whole thing.

And I could not be any happier with the fabric selection. I totally agonized over that part (ok, and all the parts, really...) but I'm glad I went to the effort to get exactly what I pictured in my mind. I even ordered a different grey in the beginning, which turned out too cool (as in: "blue-toned", not like "awesome") and insisted on finding another shade rather than compromise my vision. (That sentence right there is a tiny example of what my husband deals with. I'm actually a person who says things like "compromise my vision" in regular instances, without a trace of irony. But I had a vision! That shouldn't be compromised!) All that hemming (not literally) and hawing is what dragged this project out for an extra three months or so...Well actually, the literally hemming (and cutting/sewing/quilting/binding) is what dragged it out, but it was worth every minute.

(Oh- and the really funny part- is when I look back at the results of the poll I posted to get some design advice, I realize I pretty much chose the opposite of what everyone suggested. For every aspect of my quilt. Ha! So either I've proved you all wrong, and you're on board with my hated it then, and hate it now. But I'm so pumped that I don't even care. And truth be told, I'm proud I went with my gut. It was a good reminder that I should trust myself more with things like this.)

And perhaps the best part- I totally didn't even have a place in mind for this quilt when I started. I made it roughly twin size figuring that would be a good "snuggle on the couch" size too, but it didn't match my previous living room at all. So I was beyond excited when I finally got to fold it up and drape it over our new couch, and realized it's the exact shade of grey, and the warm tones play off of the other existing colors in our new living room. Sewing serendipity!

But you guys know how I like to keep it real...I'll be honest and tell you the quilt, as lovely as it is, hasn't been folded for longer than ten minutes or so. I'm constantly cuddled up under it, 90 degree weather be damned, so it's semi-permanently in a heap somewhere on our continent-sized sectional. 

But I'm not sorry about that either. It just means it's ready for you to come enjoy it too. 

 Anyone else join in the fun? Or if quilting's not your thing...have you finished a project recently that you're super proud of? Go ahead and deserve it...


  1. Oh my, you did great!! The feeling when an idea in your head is finally held in your hands, and its the same... AHHHH-mazing! I especially love how you pieced the back so intentionally, it looks awesome! Pinning this!

  2. This is beautiful -- you did such a great job, especially for only your 2nd quilt!

  3. COURTNEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (I would hold in to infinity and beyond if I could) YOU ROCK! that quilt is so fabulous. super duper proud. wow. just wow. you go! Columbus suits you. You're getting so much accomplished!

  4. LOVE the colors...the floral pattern especially:) You have way more patience than I do! That sectional wouldn't happen to be from Macy's would it? We have a new continent sized one as well that looks remarkably like yours:)