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Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Project Learn to Quilt: Commenced!

So I finally gave in and decided to learn to quilt.  After all, it seems to be one of the most useful needle arts, right after general sewing.  But you see, my sewing machine and I DO NOT get along.  I feel like I'm constantly fighting this thing, which is why cross stitching was always my thing.  When I found out you could quilt by hand, I was sold.  Here is my first project as set forth in the first issue of Fresh Quilts:

I decided not to post my step by step progress photos because I don't want to step on any copyright toes (I am a lawyer, after all), but here's the finished project, just in time for mami's birthday.

It went surprisingly smooth: the hardest part was the final battle with my sewing machine to do the topstiching on the sides to close the purse.  The most time consuming part was cutting out the "tumbler" pieces--all 72 of them!  I'm not too confident with a rotary cutter right now, so I cut each piece out individually.  If I ever make this purse again, I'll try folding my fabric in order to stack the layers before I cut.

The machine piecing was pretty easy.  The pattern calls for 1/4" seam allowances, so I just kept an eye out on the edge of my presser foot and was good to go, even trying chain piecing for a change!  The batting calls for fusible fleece, which was easy to find and easy to use.  I was already familiar with interfacing (for the strap), but I was new to fusible web, which was slightly tricky for me. In the end, it worked out just fine--the fusible web remained tacky for quite a while, so I was able to press the lining in place even after tons of manipulation.

I broke my first sewing machine needle on this project--I guess I was a little too anxious to finish it, and got into an epic battle with my bobbin.  In the end, a nice, deep, long breath and an extra burst of patience got me through it, and here it is--my first quilting project complete!

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