Karen writes about life as a Quiltmaker in Austin, Texas; surviving in an empty nest, marriage, cooking, gardening and (did I say?) Quilting...

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Quilting a Holiday

What better way to spend a few hours on a quiet Christmas day than to work on a Rag Quilt?

A couple of years ago, I made 5 or 6 of these easy, but arduous quilts. They were all the rage - patterns were everywhere. I looked them all over and settled on the RagTime pattern from Quilt Country in Lewisville looked simple enough. As you can see, it's just alternating plain blocks with 4-patches, with a 1 inch seam that is sewn on the front, then clipped to turn into a lovely raggy chenille like surface.


The problem is the heft of the flannel, which makes the final sewing of the heavy batting filled strips a real bear wrestling match. And then, there is the clipping.....


One of the scissor companies came out with a scissor especially designed to make the work a bit easier on the hand, but it's still requires thousands of snips... tick, tick, tick, goes the life clock.



I discovered an old pair of electric scissors in my collection of old sewing things, and discovered that it is the simplest way to clip those seam allowances - no wear on the hands, and does the job in a fraction of the time required with manual scissors!



I had two large blanket-sized bags full of pre-cut blocks, that have not been touched for two years - last year I laid off, and decided I'd given away enough Rag quilts for a while!



But, alas, one important member of my family had NOT received a quilt - my baby brother! 10 years my junior, he's just not someone I think of as one who sits around needing a lap quilt...



But that said, he recently commented that he "had NEVER been given a quilt".... and so, the mighty bags of flannel squares were resurrected from the depths of my stash closet. Some uncut yardage, which included some darker, more manly, and less Christmas-like fabrics were also enlisted in the efforts.





The old 1927 Singer 31-15 was more than up to the task of constructing the quilt, and those old electric scissors still work as well as I remember. If was a fun task to work on over the holidays.

So, for the past few days, I've tried to finish off the quilt. Tomorrow, I'll post a picture of the finished quilts.


I do hope you were able to take a few hours out to enjoy doing a bit of quilting this Holiday Season - and wish a Very Merry Christmas to you and yours!


3 comments:

Julia said...

Happy Holidays, Mrs. H! I hope John, Mr. H and the animals are well.

Mel said...

Wanted to let you know how much of an inspiration you are to me. I've nominated you for Make my Day award.
http://melsquiltingblog.blogspot.com/

Donna said...

What year was your brother born???? and how much older are you??? And how old is Dad???
Just teasing you, you know, Ha, I made it to your web site again.
Rusty thought he had one of your rag quilts, but I think you just gave one to me or us in general, so I think he wants one of those when you get started on one for him.
Donna