Monday, March 29, 2010

Bedford Quilt...

There's something about washing and drying a quilt that makes it even more amazing than before. After I had finished machine quilting this, I was not liking it at all. You see, I used larger needles as was recommended by a Juki expert on yahoo groups. I experienced alot of shredding and thread breakage, even with my new favourite thread, 50wt Aurifil And it made holes in the back of my quilt. Topped with the gray thread, it just looked kind of icky.

And then I washed it:
Even my uneven circles, my wobbly lines were rescued. My doodling curvey filler in between the circles even start to look cool.

This bottom brown block is my favourite colour block of the quilt:
From the distance, I LOVE love love the effect of the circles. Next time, I would do all of the circles dense spirals...
I'll even let you look close at my crazy filler doodles.... because on the white backing, the entire quilt looks oh so cool. If you are a long armer and reading this, or have your machine on a frame - do not judge my work. I just have fun with it. plain and simple.

I placed a small border on it. I was fiddling forever on what to do with borders. I didn't have enough fabric for my first idea.

Measures approximately 46 x 56 after washing...please excuse the unevenness of the quilt in this last photo - I realized I hadn't stretched it and shaped it after taking it out of the dryer. In this photo, you cannot see the hint of the contrasting dark binding colour I used...but it's there.
It's called Bedford because, well, the colours remind me of Martha Stewart land, and one day, I will have a vegetable garden just like hers so I can stuff myself silly with okra.

Pattern is a basic rectangle in rectangle - no pattern used, so if you're interested in measurements, just contact me. The circles are 12" diameter - I cut out a piece of cardboard and marked the circles randomly on the quilt - then I just machine spiralled inwards from the outside edge of the circle.

Things I learned in this process and want to pass on to you (what I can think of at the moment):
  • Dense quilting makes it difficult to handsew binding on - get a thimble handy.
  • I find the Konas fray quite a bit. With the white sashing - trim your frayed edges, as when you baste/sandwich, those little buggers show through and then you have to take it apart because it bugs you.
  • when cutting and piecing your whites, make sure you really look carefully that you have all of the same lot of white. White is not all the same. I have two kinds of white on my sashing...if you look carefully in person, one is a creamy white. shhh, don't tell.
  • when machine quilting, look ahead of where you're travelling to with your machine, not directly where you are. Higher speeds often help the motion better (at least for me)
  • doodle with continuous line drawings on paper to practice your fillers. I used to do this all over my algebra books in highschool, except I didn't realize it would come in handy 20 years later!
  • when you are doodle filling, try and do this all in one sitting. I did it in two sittings, and found the 2nd time, it took a bit to relearn the doodle pattern groove I was in at the first sitting.
  • holes made from your needle will close up after washing.
Kona Colours used:
Candy Green
Bahama Blue
O.D. Green (what does O.D. mean anyways?)
Old Green
Sweet Pea

**at this rate, it's doubtful that I'll meet my "all" konas used goal by the end of the year...but I'll sure have a fun time trying!

Backing - a white cotton that I get from the drapery department of my fabric store. It's affordable and a nice weight, and it's super duper wide.
Thread - light grey Aurifil 50wt 100%cotton
Basting/Sandwiching - I spray basted and once again, loved it.


  1. Hey girl, OD in relation to fabric color is Olive Drab, a US military term used to identify uniforms for the armed forces. Oh, and your quilt is can send it on to me. I only wish I could do half that good of a job quilting~~pat yourself on the back, super! Elaine

  2. I love your quilt so much I linked to it here

    Warm regards,
    Scarlett Burroughs
    Quilting Editor, Craft Gossip

  3. I'm so inspired by your quilt to actually give machine quilting a go. And you spray basted instead of pinning? I just pin basted a small playmat. HATE.PIN.BASTING.

    I REALLY like the colors your chose.

  4. I love it!!! It is gorgeous. I love that you tried something new for the quilting. It looks amazing. I will have to try that!

  5. I love your loose, uneven circles and spirals, such a fine example of freedom restrained and a wonderful contrast to the rectangles.

  6. What a great quilt! Your quilting looks wonderful too! Just love how they look after that first washing.

  7. It's gorgeous! Thanks for the info on the circles - I might just give that a try some day.

  8. Another great finish! It's amazing what the wash and dry will do for the finished product, isn't it? Thanks for the tips too, they're most welcome. Andrea, your solids experiments are a resounding success!

  9. Your quilt is really gorgeous. The colors are beautiful and it was funny how you said they reminded you of Martha Stewart. Thanks for the tips, too!

  10. Looks AWESOME!! I am glad you posted the tips about the spirals. Those are looming in my future so I am glad you did it first. I can pick your brain when I get there now.

    I think this is my favorite of your solids quilts. I just love it.

  11. Love this quilt! The quilting looks fantastic, and I love the border you added. And thanks for the tips!!

  12. love your solids inspiration. i think your quilting looks fantastic, the colors are so soothing to me!

  13. It looks great Andrea. I just adore that quilting.
    Another hint about your doodles/filling in. If I have to stop and start on free motion I keep some small, scrap sandwiches nearby so I can practice my rhythm before I start on the quilt. Even doign the same thing on paper helps.

  14. This is beautiful. I've never worked with solids ... but your pictures would convert anyone!

    Thanks for your reply and the details about how you made your circles, for some reason I always forget that I can mark a quilt top and still do free motion (yes, I'm silly).

  15. I love this quilt Andrea! I have been on a long quilting break, but I am ready to get back into it. I'm not one to use borders much, but I really like the way yours turned out. It fits this quilt perfectly.

  16. absolutely gorgeous! Your quilting is beautiful!

  17. Oooo I love this Andrea, the quilting is great! It's great where you went with this...uber natural and free.

  18. Andrea,
    This quilt is spectacular! I LOVE the texture the quilting created, and I'm going to have to borrow your idea of inward-spiraling circles sometime soon. I love the way quilts that have been densely machine quilted feel after they come out of the wash. The little bumps of fabric are so soft and lovely!
    Gorgeous, quilt. Great job! :)

  19. Beautiful quilt and a great job of quilting it - I don't care who's looking at it!

  20. What a lovely quilt! I know what you mean about Martha...what is her secret?

  21. Oh my goodness, this is beyond amazing. I want to cuddle it right now. I love it. Really. Thank you for sharing your lovely blog, keep up the great work!

  22. Hey, this quilt has inspired me to finally make a quilt. I would be so grateful if you could let me know the measurements as mentioned in your post. I don't have the confidence yet to forge out on my own with a pattern.

    Thank you

  23. Anonymous 3:53 PM

    I just found your site after looking at one of your patterns on the Moda Bake Shop. I'm enjoying your blog and back tracking on it. Came across the "Bedford" quilt & I don't know if your offer still stands regarding the sharing of measurements for it, posted in March. If so I'd love it if you'd share them. I don't have a blog, but I'll leave my email. Thanks in advance; I'm going to keep "back-track-reading".

  24. I just saw this quilt and LOVE it. If you're willing to share, I'd love to know the measurements you used -- just the width of the strips and the center rectangle would be enough to get started. thank you!!

  25. I would love to have your quilt pattern measurements. Thank you so much!


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