Quiltville Custom Quilting
~A Quiltville Mystery Quilt~
©Bonnie K Hunter
(even though it still needs binding!)
You know, I tried so many different border treatments on this thing, my head was spinning! I've spent the last week at it!
There is something that happens when you put a quilt on point. The dimensions, which start out even, since everything is built on a 9" finished block size..becomes WIERD. The dimensions are 63 3/4" X 76 1/4". By itself, that isn't a problem. But if you want to have a nice little pieced border that marches around the quilt, you are going to have to find a common denominator for these units, and that means having to add spacers to the top and bottom of the quilt that are a different measurement than what you add to the sides of the quilt to give you the right size.
And that is only IF your quilt actually DOES measure 63 3/4" X 76 1/4" Your own personal cutting and personal sewing might leave you with a different sized quilt center. Not that that is wrong, but just different.
The center of this quilt is so busy..that I decided less is more. I just didn't think that anyone was going to want to add odd sized spacer border strips, and no one was going to want to piece another gazillion square in a square blocks as that is what I was leaning towards!! :cD
I added a 1.5" cut inner border of the cheddar/gold, and I even had to pull in a second cheddar/gold because I ran out of the first one. It's okay..I just alternated the strips so it looks like I intended to do that :c)
If you wish to do the same, sew random lengths of 1.5" strips with right sides together, joining them on the diagonal as shown in the pic above. I press my seams open as it eliminates bulk in the border.
Lay out the quilt on the floor, smoothing as you go so it is straight and flat, but do not stretch...just let it lay flat. Now take your border strip and lay it down the CENTER of the quilt, top to bottom, just smoothing it out. DO NOT STRETCH, just smooth, smooth. Trim it off at the bottom of the end of the quilt. I lay my quilt out on carpet, so I also like to anchor the beginning end of the borders with a couple of long pins stuck into the carpet. It keeps that one border end from creeping as I smooth. Cut the second strip the same way.
It is really important to cut your border strips straight across, or you can compound the problem if that angle is off from 45 degrees. If the angle is too wide, your next border will flare up at the corners. If it is too narrow, it is going to pull the top/bottom border down and your side border will be too short. Keep those angles square when you trim!
Pin side borders to sides of quilt, matching centers and ends. Stitch to quilt easing in any fullness if there is any. This is the center measurement and we need to make the sides of the quilt fit the center measurement to be square, and not to "dog ear" towards the corners.
If the border seems bigger than the quilt top, stitch the border to the quilt with the border against the feed dogs. If the quilt seems a bit bigger, then sew that on with the quilt next to the feed dogs to ease it in a bit.
Now for your top and bottom borders! Back to the floor...lay the quilt out... smoothing smoothing....and lay the border strips across the center of the quilt (including the borders you just added) from side to side. Trim evenly. Pin centers and ends and ease where neccessary as for side borders.
Press seams towards the borders, away from the quilt center.
I pieced eight extra 9 patches for the cornerstones..making four "4 patch" blocks with two 9 patches and two 3.5"brown squares for each corner.
Outer Border: Cut 8 6.5" strips selvege to selvege from your border fabric.
I piece my wide borders end to end, not on the diagonal, because if I piece it on the diagonal, I LOSE so much fabric per strip..I'd actually have to then use 9 strips of fabric instead of 8. This adds up, but how you join your borders into one long length is up to you.
Following the measuring instructions above, measure through the quilt center, including the first borders added, and cut two border lengths from top to bottom, and two border lengths from side to side.
Sew the long borders to the sides of the quilt as above, pressing the seam towards the borders.
Add the cornerstones to each end of the shorter top and bottom border strips,paying attention to which way the 9 patches face. Press seams towards the border strips.
Add the top and bottom borders to the quilt, pressing seams towards the final outer borders.
This is where I tell you to quilt as desired! I quilted it with Keryn Emmerson's Double Plume. Thanks Keryn for a great design! I love designs that don't mash the quilt so flat, leaving a quilt that is begging to be wrapped up in. I think this one fits the bill just fine. Believe me, I love gorgeous machine quilting, but some scrappy busy quilts, that kind of quilting gets lost. Let the quilting suit the quilt, I say!
I sewed a bunch of left over pink strips together for a scrappy pink binding, and I'll be doing the hand stitching on that tonight. The back was also pieced from several different pieces of pink that I am happy to find a home for! Of course, when the binding is done,and the sleeve sewn on...I'll post a finished pic here!