Unusually for these parts we have been having glorious sunshine and temperatures as high as 32 degrees.  Very odd, and really rather lovely.

In such weather as this it seems unlikely that I’m focussing on quilting!

There are several reasons for this:

  1. It’s simply too hot to knit.
  2. The Gardener’s Journal quilt has been winking at me for quite some time, begging to be finished.
  3. I have a bag of hexies that are equally demanding.
  4. Did I mention…it’s too hot to knit?
  5. It’s picnic season and the GJ quilt has long been earmarked as our picnic quilt.
  6. I only have teeny pockets of time for sewing this week as the kids are on summer holidays now. A few lines of quilting are just the ticket.
  7. The hexies are the perfect handwork for evenings with the husband and a movie.
  8. And, of course, it’s just too darned hot to knit.

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So I am currently machine quilting like a fool trying to get the GJ finished.

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It’s my first outing with a walking foot and I managed to snap 6 needles before I got the hang of it. Not cool. But I’ve completed all the left to right rows and am well under way with the up and down rows.  The border will be 1″ cross hatching and therefore a great deal quicker.  I’m aiming to have it ready for the binding by the end of the weekend…although that may be a tad unrealistic.

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I’ve also sorted out all the flowers for the hexie quilt into stacks of 10, with an interesting mix of light and dark colours in each stack.

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Each stack is then bagged up and I’m working through one bag at a time as each represents one row of the quilt.

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I’m finding the machine quilting isn’t the most fun I’ve ever had with a sewing machine. With each row I admire more and more the skill of quilters who put together a top in no time flat, and quilt it even faster. I may have mentioned it before, but I’ve actually learned a whole load from trying different types of quilting.  I love sewing quilts by hand, not machine.  Hand sewing a quilt is a lovely social activity.  Hexies are a fabulously portable project. I also find hand sewing tremendously soothing.  If I’m sat at the machine I’d much rather be dressmaking.

This, for me, is the joy of developing our skills as needlewomen.  You can explore your craft and find what works for you. For me, when it comes to quilts, it’s going to be hand sewing all the way in the future.

But still, I’m getting there with Gardener’s Journal.  I don’t think there is a single straight line on this quilt but it is looking lovely.  And hopefully will soon be finished. Perhaps in time for cooler weather…and a return to the knitting needles.

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