Quilting for Dummies
May 24, 2006
Good news! The new windows seem to be staying bolted into the walls, the dust is settling at a rate I can almost keep up with, the kids are in school, and I find myself with an unexpected free afternoon. So, obviously, I’m going to make a quilt.
HAHAHAHahahahaha. No really! I’m going to make a quilt! But first I’m going to write a tutorial, How To Make a Quilt By Kay Gardiner Who Has Never Made a Quilt.
Step 1: Get a copy of Denyse Schmidt Quilts, by Denyse Schmidt. (I mean, if you are going to make a quilt, make it a cool one, right? There are no cooler quilts than DS quilts.)
Step 2: Choose your quilt. I chose, of all things, a log cabin: “What A Bunch of Squares”. It’s a Courthouse Steps layout, very simple. Denyse gives you templates in the back of the book, so that your log cabin strips will be wonky, not straight, and your centers will be different sizes. With the arrogance that comes with having absolutely no experience making quilts, I decided, WE DON’T NEED NO STINKIN’ TEMPLATES. I mean, if I can’t make a strip wonky, what good am I? The saving grace is that you can square up each log cabin before you join them into the quilt top. That’s my theory.
Step 3: Before you do anything else, KNIT THE QUILT. Do not, under any circumstances, skip this step. Sure, it’s a shortcut not to knit a whole quilt before starting the fabric version. But Grasshopper, it is only by going through your stash and knitting up yarns in a variety of shades of ‘Lake’, ‘Limeade’, and ‘Lemonade’, that you truly understand qu’est-ce que c’est le Lake, le Limeade, et le Lemonade. (Sometimes, I find, Lemonade is orange.) There are 9 more knitted squares in my basket. I had a blast mixing different cotton yarns. The center patch is a self-striping cotton by Katia called ‘Jamaica’–isn’t it the Lake-iest?
Step 4: When you are one with the Lake, the Lemonade, and the Limeade, choose your fabrics. Cut. Sew. No problem.
I’ll let you know how it goes.
P.S. Setting up my photo shoot on last night’s Magnetic Poetry surface, I found the following sentences composed by Carrie.
I have no small amount of maternal pride at the one about the President. Hubby and I are doing strong work, raising the next generation of Upper West Siders.