Wednesday, November 21, 2012

the panda quilts: #11: king-sized granny squares wedding quilt

One of the quilting blogs I follow, Blue Elephant Stitches, posted a "Granny Squares" tutorial back in January. Around this time, I got my new fancy sewing machine and decided to make a block and posted a picture on instagram. The photo was "liked" by a dear old friend of mine who happened to be engaged to a dear old friend of my mister. They're special to us. So special, that at that very moment, I decided I'd make a quilt as their wedding gift. I figured it was a completely do-able over the next 9 months or so before their wedding day. 
the beginning. this one didn't even make the final was a little too small
Whenever I'd get a free moment here or there, I would go into my scrap bin, pick out 2 colors, and cut and sew 25 2 1/2" blocks together.  (I used Kona Snow for the "background" color). My scrap bin handled the job with flying colors, but I bought a few 5" charm packs as supplementation.

I didn't document my process very well. But every so often, I would lay out my completed-to-date blocks and snap a picture with my iPhone to check out the color composition and whatnot.
22 down, ??? to go
 And I'd try to guestimate how many blocks I'd have to come up with to make a king-sized quilt.
In the end, I wound up with 6 rows of 7 (or 7 rows of 6...however you want to look at it!). This picture was taken before I sewed all the sashing strips. I used 3" strips between the blocks, then ended up adding about 16" all around. (I can't find the sheet I used for my sketches and calculations). If you're doing the math at home, that equals "a heck of a lot of" Kona Snow. I should've just bought a whole bolt of the stuff.

While I was piecing all the strips to the blocks for the quilt top, I decided that I was physically incapable/terrified to "quilt" the quilt at home on my machine. It was 108x100, twice the size of the largest thing I had ever done (a twin).  I'll skip the whole long story about how I ended up in Springfield, TN, but that's where I brought my quilt...

In the meantime, the bride and groom were married and it was a beautiful and fun ceremony and reception.  Fast forward weeks and weeks (and weeks) later, and I finally got the word that it was done. (Not quite though...they didn't bind it! So I decided to do that myself, and I am glad I did. It made me realize that (if I should ever undertake a king-sized quilt again), I may be able to quilt it myself. (I was really just afraid of the maneuverability of something that size, and I handled the machine binding with patience and ease).
close-up of the quilt back - you can see the "meandering tear drop" design

I wanted to photograph the quilt before passing the it off to the newly-marrieds, which posed another problem. My mister's arms weren't long or wide enough to hold the whole thing by himself. He used a microphone stand to prop up one corner and we finally put our back deck to use:

Cheers, Fergusons...We love you!


The Blonde Mule said...

This is so awesome! I can't believe you did this!

Carolyn said...

I love the "meandering teardrop", all of this is so great!