Borders can make all the difference in a quilt top which just doesn't seem right. My heart quilt was way too "hot" - it just seemed so extreme once I put the heart blocks with the black and red lattice/cornerstones. Do you remember the heart blocks? They were featured in this blog. Then I showed how to put the top together in this post. And now here we are almost a month later! However, it is nowhere near Valentine's day 2014 so I am doing fine. See how good I am about rationalizing fluid deadlines? But hey, I had shopping to do. I needed a border that would cool down the sharp contrast between the blocks and the lattice work. Plus, I wanted to make it look a little snazzier, a little more up to date. I just wasn't satisfied with the top, I liked the blocks but not all together. Sometimes when the pieces are better than the whole, you can save it with just the right border.
Here are the three fabrics I had to choose from. I put all of them next to the top. Which one would you have chosen? If you have trouble deciding, I always do the elimination method, I kick one out first. I wanted to have the quilt look a bit more modern, a medium value to counterbalance the dark/light values and bring in all the colors. I decided the grey and black flowers needed some red and the fabric wasn't very modern next to the top. I threw it out first and put it with my stash of grey fabrics. (Which now that I think of it, I need to replenish the solid greys, stop, focus Kathy!)
Now I was down to two fabrics and this was a hard choice. Both had the medium cooler value I was seeking. Both had the red and the black in there. And I liked both! What to do, what to do!
When I have trouble deciding I always take each fabric and make it look like it is the border and this made me choose the Hip 2 b square fabric. It just looked better. I was a little afraid that the dots wouldn't break up the bowling shirt vibe I was getting off this top.
When you spread out a fabric just the right way, it looks almost sewn and you get a really good idea of what it will look like all put together. Phew, found a fabric I liked and eliminated the competition. But I did like that dot fabric so I decided while it wasn't enough for the back of the quilt, I could use it on the back. I love the way people piece the backs now. I had a bunch of that red Merimekko fabric left over from the heart quilts I made my daughters. This quilt was wider than 54" so I cut it in half lengthwise and cut a 12.5 inch strip of the dots. It wasn't as long. Rats. Wait, I had some leftovers of the border. And voilà the back.
There is a reflection in the picture and I didn't realize it until I had the back on the Gladys and it was too late to take another picture. I was so enthused with piecing this back that I briefly considered cutting up the red panels and inserting more in them but I made myself stop. What I had done so far was from necessity, I wasn't really looking to have a reversible quilt. (However, it's an interesting idea for a future quilt!)
Now all I have to do is quilt it. It won't be as fast as the boy quilts. Oh yes, thanks for asking I did finish quilting the second Space quilt. I had to so I could load this one on and here it is. I am very pleased that the borders make the difference, the value is much better and it's perkier.
I am floating the batting and the top right now but there is a part of me that wants to clamp that top on the other roller. It is quite a bit bigger than the boy quilts. I just started floating tops with those two and table runners. I liked the control it gave me so much that I am thinking I will keep it up. But just to make sure, I came down from the sewing room and left it there to "marinate" while I make sure that's what I want.
I have about ten days in front of me with no babysitting of Zara as my daughter is on Spring break. Will I get more sewing done or does having limited time actually make me more productive and efficient? We shall see! I will also show you this quilt when it is all quilted and bound because right now I am wondering, which fabric will I use to bind it. See why this is such a great hobby? There is always something to think about! The binding choice isn't as important as the borders which did make the difference. Phew!
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