Thursday, February 25, 2016

50th Anniversary Wall Quilt - Final

After quilting the background, I selected the border I thought would look best and got sewing. But I wanted a mitered border, which I've never done before. I watched several YouTube videos and of course they always make it sound really, really, easy and never once to they say "don't do X because then it won't work" or "watch out for Y." No. They simply say, "See its easy!" No. No it isn't.

Mitered Corners

The first step to mitered corners is marking your center panel. Mark 1/4" away from your corners in every direction. Sew your borders on the panel starting and stopping at the 1/4" marks.

Once you get all 4 sides done, your borders will NOT be sewn down in the corners. All the borders are floppy and weird at this point. Lay all your borders flat out so that they overlap (sorry, I don't have a picture). Mark with a pen, on each fabric with a  little dot, where the two borders intersect.

Next, fold your center panel in 1/2 on the diagonal. Match up your top border and bottom border right sides together. You should now have a big triangle, wrong side facing up. Take your bottom border and the SIDE border and line them up right sides together.

The center panel gets pinched in between as you can see. Now lay everything as flat as you can on a cutting mat with a 45 degree angle. Now, draw a 45 degree line across the border. This is your sew line. Remember that little mark you made when all the borders were laying flat and the two borders intersected?  That little mark should line up on the 45 degree line you just made.

Pin along the sew line. If you have a double border like I did, make sure you pin at the seam. You want to start up near the top but NOT as high as you marked. If you do, you will see stitching in the center panel and get a big pucker. Ask me how I know.

This was definitely the hard part. Figuring out where your stitching should start. I had a lot of trouble to the point where my fabric frayed to the point where I had to take off 2 borders, re cut the gold/brown fabric, re-sew it and then sew it back onto the center. Yeah, not fun.

I'm not sure I actually did this right but I'll tell you what worked for me. BEFORE sewing on the 45, lay your borders flat out criss crossing each other. At the corner where the fabric meets, stab a pin straight down. Flip it over and mark where your needle came through.  This mark will be on the back of the fabric after you line your fabric up and you have your 45. This mark may NOT fall on your 45, but each time I dropped my needle in that spot my corner worked. Also, something else I did was extend the sew line where I attached the borders, a lot closer than 1/4" away. After I got one of the corners on and it looked good but I had gaps where it clearly wasn't sewn down just before the corner. Not good.

In the picture above, I have a teeny tiny pucker in the corner, which I tore out and resewed. I simply couldn't stand it but that's what I mean by pucker. But otherwise a really good mitered corner. The seam is really out to a corner but the picture doesn't show all the fabric and the seam looks off but it wasn't.

The mitered corners were definitely the hardest sewing I've done on this project and I admit was ready to give up. I probably sewed about 20 corners on something that only has 4.

Applique Blocks

I laid out my blocks and once I was happy with them I sewed them together and then I sewed them onto the center panel and after looking at them I thought they were missing something.

I thought I'd cover up the seams between the blocks and I used cream fabric with gold flecks looked really nice. Subtle but nice. I got out my Clover 1/2" binding tip and made some strips. Next, I took my fusible tape, pressed it onto the seams I wanted to cover and pressed the 1/2" sashing over the tape and fused with the iron.

I took a light tan colored silk thread and hand stitched the sashing down. It took a while to hand stitch it but I like the look instead of machine stitching all over the front.


Then, I took the gold/brown fabric and cut 2.5" strips for the binding, sewed those together and got it stitched down on the front and hand sewed it to the back.


I also sewed the quilt label to the back. You can put anything you want on the quilt label just remember to always put a title, date you completed your work, your name and contact information and if you used a pattern make sure to reference the pattern and author.

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