A Fine Vine

We had a lovely weekend weather-wise. Mike was able to get quite a bit accomplished outside. Of course, I was out and about as well. Sunday was a little more cloudy, although one of the warmer days we've had. I checked in on things in the greenhouse. For now, I'm watching those little lettuce seeds like a hawk. They need to be uncovered as soon as they germinate. I made the mistake of going off one August after planting and covering some seeds for a new round of lettuce. The weekend was especially warm, and the poor things germinated and then boiled in their own wet soil. I'm much more careful now.

Things are moving along in the sewing room. The random square sections of the Mommy & Me baby quilt are sewn together now, and I laid them out with the other sections so that I could get a look at the whole background.

Before sewing together the 5-inch blocks, I spent a little time getting the colors and patterns random, but I kind of like Sharon's no-stress, grab-and-sew method. With that in mind, I didn't spend too much time on it, and I'm happy with where it ended up. 

Until I receive the jumbo rickrack and the fabric for the elephant applique, I'm afraid I've taken this as far as I can. I'll want to trim those sections to size once the rickrack and the applique are sewn on. For now, I'll just fold this up and work on some other things. The fabric I chose for the elephant applique might not work because the background is rather light. It might mean a trip to the fabric store to find what I want. That would just be terrible wouldn't it? I just hate it when I have to go to the fabric store! It's all part of being a quilter...wandering through bolt after bolt...fondling all that fabric...sigh...Okay. Shaking it off now. 

With that done, it seemed as though I couldn't avoid the vine on the Quiltmaker's Garden any longer. The vine is made from a one-inch wide strip of fabric cut on the bias. There were some instructions accompanying the pattern and, true to form, they made no sense whatsoever. Thank you, Quiltmaker. Just consider this my newest reminder that I will never forgive you for the crappy instructions that accompanied this quilt.

Going it alone, I decided to first fold it in half and press in a crease. Then I folded each edge to the middle crease and pressed again...essentially making a double-fold bias tape. I have a tool for that, but mine was too large to be of any use. When I talked about doing this in an earlier post, several of you had excellent ideas for making the vine wind around the trellis to make it look more natural. They were all good ideas, and I thank you for your suggestions. Frankly, the fight went out of me long ago on this quilt. The paper-piecing really did me in. With that in mind, I ended up doing it more or less the way it was pictured on the pattern. It was pinned about every inch and then stitched down using the blanket stitch on my sewing machine.

As you might guess, I had plenty of help doing this. The vine was long and so much fun(!), if you get my drift.

Once that was stitched down, I needed to make 26 leaves for applique: 11 small ones, and 15 large ones. That actually went more quickly than expected, and in short order, I had them fused down.

Today I'll work on getting them all top-stitched. The quilt is rather large now, and I'm going to need to do this on my domestic machine. I'll need to get my arms in shape for plenty of wrestling, I'm afraid.

It'll be a good project to work on while I tackle Mt. Laundry on this rainy Monday. There is one other housework chore to do. Nevertheless, getting this quilt top finished is my highest priority. Then I'll pile it in the middle of the room, plant a flag, and declare victory over this, my nemesis quilt. It would be a good name for it, don't you think? The Quiltmaker's Nemesis.

8 comments from clever and witty friends:

Vroomans' Quilts said...

I am sure you will be so happy to have the Nemesis finished. Aw, shucks - a trip to the fabric store. I need one of those for some perk me ups, but I have to whittle a little more down before that happens.

claudia said...

I could make a run to the fabric shop for you, if you'd like! No really, I don't mind at all!

I hope that when you have quilted and bound Quiltmaker's Garden and hung it up (if that is what you are going to do) you don't sneer at it every time you pass by it!

Brown Family said...

THe vine looks great! Almost to the top of mount Nemrsis

Dana Gaffney said...

I feel that way about most patterns, it's like they use a different language, but I'm glad you persevered and got that vine done, it looks great.

Wendy Tuma said...

The Nemesis is almost done. What will you do with it? Are you going to hang it somewhere? It looks really nice, but I do understand those quilts that just were no fun to make. Too bad about having to go to the fabric store; I could come and go along help you pick out all the right fabrics and wander through the nooks and crannies of the shop . . .

Denise :) said...

Hey, it's looking real good! I love the idea of planting a flag in your nemesis quilt -- and yes, it's the perfect name for it -- though it's really too pretty for such a name! :)

Betty said...

That quilt should serve as a reminder of your determination and "can do" attitude! It's very pretty and may become one of your favorites someday.
I'm not an applique person at all, but I do recall seeing a method that seemed like something I could do if absolutely necessary. The bias strip was folded in half, pressed, then stitched to the background with a very small seam next to the raw edges. The folded edge is then pressed over to cover the raw edge and stitched down to the background. That could be done by hand to be invisible. Thought that might come in handy if you ever find yourself needing to make another vine.

Lyndsey said...

Nemesis is definitely a good name for the quilt. I like the vine on the quilt even if it doesn't go round the posts.