Monday, January 13, 2014

My Guatemalan Quilt

  Hundreds of Guatemalan Cortes come through my hands.  I have made curtains, handbags, and the usual like for years. Now it is time to show my clients what they can really do with these 4+ yard amazing compound ikats. How about the amazing world of quilting. Patchwork, whole cloth, all kinds of techniques I am just finding out about.  The weird thing, as  I began this project, everyone I talked to either quilted or has some friend, family member who makes quilts. So here it is..

            My finished quilt.            


The project was not hard at all, a beginners quilt.  I cut 66 - 4 1/2" strips of corte material and 20 2 1/2" strips.  From the wide strips you sew three strips together  and cut those strips into 4 1/2" strips.  Miracle. You now have three squares sewn together. Combine three of those and you have a nine patch block.  The small 2 1/2" strips you sew in fours and make 16 square blocks.  The cutting and sewing went fast, I had so much fun.

Cutting the back pieces

The next step was to cut the large pieces for the back.  I learned from my cousin, the master, that it is always better to have big pieces on your backing.  Too many seams, and you know there is going to be many seams on the front piece, can give the quilting machine some hard times.   Here's a photo of both pieces, front and back.  

The next step is to take all of your pieces to a quilter.  One can quilt by hand, lay everything out and baste by hand all of the components and then quilt using hand stitches. Alternatively, you can join all three pieces and quilt with a home sewing machine, free style.  I want to try this soon.  The most common way to quilt is a quilting machine, the mother of all sewing machines. I am so glad I did this, the quilt being so large.  I loved this lady I met, she did a fantastic job, amazing.  If you have never seen one, it is mind blowing.                                                                                         

She puts the three pieces, top, batting, and bottom on separate rollers.  Then, following a pattern line or freestyle, she stitches away.  About 6-8 hours of stitching for a double size quilt. This takes some muscles.

Takes up an entire room. My quilt came out so tight and very warm.  Love it!

I am not finished with this yet!  Here is my next project, a 20x20 pillow. 

I sewed leftover pieces together sort of haphazard. Things are not straight, yet I am liking it. Going to try that machine quilting thing. 
All of this left me with the feeling to do more. After the next Warrenton, I am digging back into the sewing room.  Maybe quilting kits for all of my clients.  What do you think? 


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