Every good Pioneer Housewife should have at least one quilt (I am not sure this is true, but it works for this story). With that in mind I decided it was about time to try quilting, armed with the information my little sewing machine wouldn’t cut the mustard I forged ahead anyway. It’s not pioneering if you have all the correct gear.
I managed to find what looked like a nice easy ‘learn to quilt’ design, got hold of the material I needed (Mystery DIY Man quickly became bored at this point). I needed to find 14 different fabrics, 12 designs for the front of the quilt, one for the backing and some white (or something plain) for inbetween the blocks on the front. I also needed to pick up some wadding for the middle of the quilt. This was where I realised I was making a cot quilt…I don’t even have a cot (Mystery DIY Man?), let alone a small human. I decided I wanted to have 6 different patterns make up the front of the quilt, but have each pattern in two colours (for the total of 12). I found a lovely piece of fabric for the backing – turns out it is a design from the Victoria and Albert Museum.
After picking out all the fabrics, if you haven’t done any quilting before all the books say you have to get a cutting board, measuring board and a rotary cutter. I am still in two minds about the rotary cutter, but I don’t think my learner status helps. If you want to make a quilt be prepared to spend most of your time cutting pieces of fabric out. Luckily, I had picked rectangles, I hate to think what would have happened with hexagons or something equally complicated.
Once you have spent many hours slicking pieces of fabric, and your back feels like it belongs to your elderly grandmother you’re probably about ready to stick them all together. I put all my pieces out on the floor and tried to decide how it should look – this can take a while if you’re a bit of a perfectionist. Once all your blocks are sewn together into one piece, you get to try and layer up all the pieces (front, wadding and backing). Pin them all together and decide how you want to do the quilting (the patterns sewn through the whole quilt). Because I had very busy material (and was sick of the quilt) I stuck with a fairly basic rectangular spiral.
Just when you think you’re finished, you’ll suddenly discovered your quilt still needs a frame/border/edging. Again I went with a really plain binding , which I made from the white stripes I used in the front panel. With it all finished I guess I’ll have to find a small human to use it.