This year I participated in Hands 2 Help Quilts for charity. The pattern was a fun one. The colorway and designs are not quite in my comfort zone because it's kinda' modern. I buy charm packs when I find them on sale to use for quilts. This was a charm pack called Waterfront Park by Michael Miller. The pattern was one I bought because it looked easy and I try to find easy patterns for charity quilts.
This year I chose Layers of Hope - Quilting 911. The quilts donated to this wonderful group go to 911 Telecommunications Operators (911 Dispatchers) and their families when they are going through difficult times. They are given to the dispatchers or their families when they are ill, have had to go through a loss or tragedy. The purpose is to give them comfort and support during that time. It is a way of paying back and thanking them for all the significant things they do as dispatchers and making a difference every day.
I think the turquoise binding pulls the quilt together and gives it the pop as if the fabrics don't do that enough! Then I found this great backing that is somewhat like ticking. It was a sheet that I had saved to use for a binding someday, and it worked perfectly here.
I chose a wavy quilting pattern for the quilt. I see many modern quilts with simple flowing design and that helped me to choose this one. I was fortunate to have bought a ruler to make scalloped edges on quilts; I adore them so! Of course, as is usual for me, I haven't done one yet! On the opposite side of the ruler was a wavy pattern that I thought was just the ticket for quilting. I traced the lines and then did free-motion for quilting.
The binding was the continuation of a method I had tried once before: machine binding. For a first attempt it was presentable. This second attempt turned out much better!
I found these most helpful tutorials from Nancy's Notions and Cluck Cluck Sew. I started with Nancy's tute that I found to be the clearest instructions on the video. I switched over to Cluck, Cluck Sew because she had very clear pictures of the final step of sewing on the binding. There are two methods of the last step of binding. Nancy showed how stitch in the ditch from the front of the quilt. Cluck, Cluck Sew demonstrated how to sew from the back side of the quilt. I chose to sew from the front since I would be able to see what it looked like as I went along. I knew if I tried it from the back, it would probably look straight until I turned the quilt to the front and found a wandering line.
The picture below, on the left, shows the finished binding. The picture on the right shows the binding strip where it joins once you are finished. I found a super-duper method of the finishing step on Nancy's Notions tutorial on binding. No longer do you have to pull the two strips and cross them while struggling to keep the quilt from bullying its way to obscure your strips! Truly!
For those of you who just can't wait to see the method on the video, which I highly recommend, here is my explanation. I don't claim you will be able to follow my attempt her, but now you have been warned! Basically, you cut the end one of the strips at a 45' angle and press under a 1/4" seam before you start sewing on the binding. Next you put a small strip of 2-sided fusible web, like Steam-a-Seam 2, along the 45' cut. Once you have sewn the binding to the backside of the quilt and returned to your starting place, you tuck binding that does not have the cut. After that, you take the seam with the fusible web and place it over the other and press it down joining the ends together. Finish stitching the binding and Voila! you have it. No nasty tug o' war with the final step. Now you may run to You Tube (from the link above) and find out what in the heck I was talking about! Don't say I didn't warn you!
All I have left now is to bundle this baby off to Layers of Hope and let it find its way to a deserving new friend.