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Opinions, please!

I've finally managed to muster enough energy to stop staring at the pile of Stained QAL blocks on my sewing table and do something with them...

I cut 48 squares of wadding and used 505 basting spray for the first time:

A not very interesting pile of squares of wadding

And then sorted out the blocks and stuck them to the wadding.  I learnt my lesson about the after-effects of spray basting (tight chest and very sore, itchy hands) and, instead of spraying them in my sewing room in front of a wide-open window, I decamped to the conservatory... I briefly considered donning gloves but decided that would be a step too far - I just washed my hands at regular intervals and then three times when I'd finished!

...where I could stand in front of the open door.  I just brought through one set of squares at a time so I could get out of the room every few minutes and allow the fumes/smell to dissipate and keeping the door through to the house closed meant the smell didn't spread.  Much better!

I ended up with this:

A squishy pile of quilt blocks (in case you're wondering about the scale - that's a 500ml can of spray).

I also managed to get a photo which better shows the colours of the fabrics:

It's still not great but it gives you some idea.

This quilt is for my mam (and therefore not my usual style/colours of fabrics - I do like them, just not for me!) and I'm using the bits left over from this quilt.  I decided that the design of the quilt would be ideal for QAYG, particularly as I'm using a double layer of wadding to make it nice and warm (and heavy!) and don't fancy wrestling the whole quilt through the machine. 

So, here's where I need your opinions!

Here's the front:

Please imagine grey sashing strips between the blocks!

And the back:

Again, imagine the blocks have grey sashing strips between them!

How should I quilt it?!!

At the moment I have two plans.  The first is wavy lines, similar to the border of this wall hanging I made (using Oakshott) for my mam but I'd put the lines further apart.  (You may not be able to tell from the awful photo but it's an allium!)

Sorry, it's a rubbish photo - I think it may have been taken on my mobile!

I thought I'd alternate the direction of the lines so that the quilting on each block went in a different direction to its neighbours.

My second plan (in case quilting through two layers of 'Warm and Natural' wadding is awful!) is to stitch one or two sets of diagonal lines across each (12") block.

Do these plans sound like they'd suit the quilt?   Have you got any other suggestions?!  As the 'between the blocks' sashing isn't going to be quilted I don't want something where the quilting lines are going to have to line up from one block to the next.  And I really don't think I can face quilting in the ditch around all those pieces, even though I would just be doing a block at a time...oh, and I don't do FMQ, even though it could be the perfect solution for this quilt.  I've tried (on the allium wall hanging) and found it just too tiring (and stressful).  Other than that all, suggestions are welcome - please chip in!

Lily's Quilts

I haven't really done much this month but I thought I'd link up to Fresh Sewing Day and make a mosaic to show just how little I've done!

See?  Not a lot!
Clockwise from top left: an EPP Paris pin cushion, some gorgeous Japanese import fabrics from Sarah, the start (finally!) of my Summersville quilt (I've almost finished the first square), my first Umaro scarf (completed), my second Umaro scarf (halfway through), my invisible crochet blanket.

I'll leave you with photos of what Archie was doing while I was spray basting 24 blocks...

What are you up to?  Does it involve food?

You're in and out like a yo-yo and I'm getting dizzy.  And hungry.

Thanks for popping in!

P.S.  If you fancy a laugh at my was only when naming and saving my 'October' mosaic I realised that for the entire month of October I've been tagging my photos (and saving them in the folder marked) September 2012.  I hadn't even made a folder for October...I knew it was October,I just had linked that fact with the photo tag/folder name...I'm such a divvy!


  1. Since you're doing QAYG why not go crazy and do something completely different on each block? The wavy lines idea will look nice, but it seems a bit of a wasted opportunity now that you've got all the pieces cut up into squares!

  2. Your Stained is looking wonderful!! I like the idea of wavy lines, I think it'll give it nice movement. The mosaic of makes is beautiful too :)

  3. When I did my cheeky quilt as you go quilt I did straight(ish) lines horizontal one block then vertical the block next to it and so on just alternating them. I was very happy with how it turned out and something similar could really work well on this quilt. I also made mine varying widths apart. Random... That's the word I'm looking for, random widths apart.
    Good luck!

  4. Would you be happy to try this design but more open as it would sort of echo your rectangular shapes?

    I know it is FMQ but I think you could do it with a walking foot on your squares - just something else to consider...looking good though and it will be great to get this quilt finished!

    Your knitting looks fab - it takes quite a lot of time Helen to do such a pretty pattern!

  5. I really like the idea of the wavy lines! It would really soften it up :) Lovely projects in your mosaic too!

  6. when you do quilt as you go how do you attach the blocks together so that the seams aren't obvious? I have seen it done several different ways and wonder on your method

  7. Lovely! I think the alternating wavy lines would like really nice. So then you need to spray=baste batt to each of the sashing bits when it's time to pull it all together??

  8. I love what you've got there for the quilt as you go. I like the idea of the wavy quilting to add some movement to all those straight lines.

  9. I like the idea of wavy lines but wonder about those blocks that are straight up and down. Those would only work if you do those lines going left to right, so I would say go with the diagonal design. Of course this is my opinion and that and 50 cents will buy you a coke. In other words its not worth much.

  10. I have no sensible quilting advice. I understand the process of QAYG and can get my head around it when it's individual things like a mat or something. I can't get my head round the joining of the blocks and making one big quilt and not having it look funny or... dunno

  11. Your Stained blocks look wonderful! I like the idea of the wavy lines.
    That scarf is gorgeous!

  12. They're not necessarily my kind of fabrics either, but it still looks gorgeous! Well done! I'd be tempted to try something different, like concentric circles but starting from different spots on each block?

  13. Another vote for wavy! Archie could be a professional model!

  14. Wonky wavy quilting gets my vote :)

  15. I reckon the wonky lines would look great xxx

  16. Wow, who knew spray basting was so bad for you! I love the pincushion, its gorgeous, and the Umaro scarves look cool, I don't do knitting, i'm just getting my head round crochet, one needle/hook at a time though!! Ange : )

  17. I like the idea of the wavy lines going in different directions on each block. It's going to be a very pretty quilt!

  18. Such a lovely quilt coming along for the mam. I Like Kat's suggestion. There is a lot going on visually in each block. I would decide the widths of the quilted lines to correspond with whats happening in each block. Wavy could look nice but I'd be scared to do anything even slightly on the bias.
    KISS (Keep It Simple S.....)
    So pleased to see eeyore up and about... but terribly miffed that Archie wasnt in some ridiculous Halloween costume this year....and I hope your Invisible crochet blanket got dry... wouldnt want mould appearing on your lovely hard work.

  19. I did very basic wavy lines on my stained and absolutely loved how it turned out. Love how its coming together

  20. I like the wavy lines option .... But I love Sarah's circular option, would be great with different spacing, some really close, and a few more spaced apart!

  21. I love your stained blocks Helen. I like your first suggestion. Good luck with it.. QAYG has always been kind of a mystery to me, how to sew them all together in the end, etc. Can't wait to see how it turns out. I love that little Paris pin cushion, too, and of course it's always good to see the WonderDog! :)

  22. I could just frame your mosaic and smile happily at that lovely pincushion and knitted scarves. Of course, I would want a separate framed picture of Archie to set on my dresser. I'm no help with your stained glass except to say it's lovely!

  23. I like the idea of the wavy lines going in different directions. Each perpendicular to it's neighbours, right? Would have a nice weave look to it

  24. This is going to be a beautiful quilt :) I'm thinking that you may well find quilting through 2 layers of heavy wadding a tad difficult and your machine may not like it. However, I'm in the wavy camp ;) I love the look of the wavy borders in the little wallhanging. Do you have an 's' type decorative stitch on your machine? It would make an even wiggle line like a continuous 's' and can your machine alter the length and width of the decorative stitches? What type of wadding are you using? Is it warm and natural? Have you ever tried fusible wadding? May be a better option for you than the spray stuff. I like it for small sections... seems my answer is like an inquisition, LOL.. I'm sure whatever you decide will be the right decision. Ellyx

  25. Hi Helen....thanks for commenting on my post today. I agree with the wavy lines for your quilt; I think it will be fabulous!!!!! What I don't understand about QAYG is how does it all come together especially the back? Do you just quilt the top to the wadding and then add the back? Maybe I'm having a

  26. It's going to be great and you may even beat me! I like Laura Jane's idea of something different on each block but I also like wavy organic.

  27. I like the wavy line idea and then you can turn them as you plan and it will look wonderful - an effect that would be really hard without the QAYG approach. By the way, I never spray baste, just pin and have not had issues.

  28. Loving your quilt! I would do different patterns on each block to get some practice in, but I do like the look of wavy lines in different directions. Hugs xx

  29. I like the idea of wavy lines, I used them on my nephew's quilt ( and it was really fun :D

  30. Catching up now I'm home! As a tip from an asthmatic that only spray bastes, pop into B&Q, get yourself some masks for spray painting - dirt cheap, and totally helps! I never touch it mind, so not sure what to suggest about the hands (other than don't touch ;o) ) Don't ask me how to quilt the thing though ;o)

    Loved your randomness too, even if you do have bizarre musical appliances ;o)

  31. I like the wavy one.Very nice.

  32. Sorry to be so late to read this. Haven't read all the comments so might be repeating others' comments.
    I like the wavy lines very much and alternate directions sounds great.
    Assume you are doing QAYG with strips?
    I am worried about you using 2 layers of W & N - I always find it makes a pretty heavy quilt as is.
    Have you ever tried 80/20 wadding, I find it easier to machine quilt.
    I am with Leanne on the pinning only too - especially for blocks. I recently used 505 on a baby quilt and felt it was quite stiff and unwieldy to quilt.It is handy for small stuff tho.

  33. Hi Helen! Just reading this now. I think it would look great quilted with the wavy lines. I love it, by the way (I'm a big fan of Asian fabrics)-- your mam will be very happy to receive it. Archie is as cute as ever-- love your photos and captions! Looking forward to seeing the finished product!

  34. I think this is such a lovely it's going to look good whatever you decide so best go with whatever you'll find quickest and simplest :)


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