Saturday, March 24, 2012

Wholecloth Adventures...

Leah Day is doing a wholecloth-quilt a long, that I have been intending to join since the beginning, but haven't been able to.  Well, today, I have time to quilt!  (Well, actually, I need to be writing a paper, but this is more fun.)

The very first step was a departure from my normal quilting routine: pre-wash the fabric.  That wrinkly vintage look I love on my quilts is not something that is desirable here.  So the fabric needs to get any shrinking out of the way.  I washed once, on hot.  Hopefully that is enough.

Then, like always, I starched the fabric.

And so begins the wholecloth adventure.

I don't have a light box, so I used my door:

Mistake #1.
I thought it would be easiest at eye level, so I don't have to crouch at all.  The problem was that meant some of the design was a bit too high for me.  I had to stand on my tip toes to get the top part.

 It was actually harder to race than I expected.  My left arm hurt a bit when I was done. I can't imagine how difficult it must be to mark a bed sized quilt.

This is what mine looks like right now, ready for the lines to be quilted.
I ended up using sidewalk chalk.  I'll have to wait to wash it out to find out if that is mistake #2.  I was going to use the Frixion pens, but decided not to.  Leah actually wrote a post about why she recommends not using them.  It was basically "what chemicals are you putting in your quilt?"  That really doesn't concern me.  I've written to Pilot and learned they are acid free.  Plus, this is a practice quilt.  It doesn't matter to me if it doesn't last long enough to be an heirloom.  But this is what bothered me:
Kevin took the good camera, so I can't get a picture but I did a test.  I wrote "test".  I ironed it off.  The ink disappeared.  The word "test" stayed!!!  When I ironed it off, it bleached out the fabric.  So it isn't that it won't last long enough to be an heirloom, it will be ruined from the start.

So what color thread to use?  I have a blue that matches perfectly, but a perfect match- while great for an heirloom isn't good for learning.  Do I want dark pink or yellow?  The pink might be hard to see against the blue, but blue and pink look great together.  The yellow will really stand out.

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