A Quilt from Beginning to End Hightower Stitching


This is Stephanie at Hightower Stitching
and I’ve been trying to make this video. This is the third time so this should be
the charm! Today’s is about Grandma’s Patriotic Sampler and has to do with
choosing a pattern, piecing the blocks, and doing the finishing quilting. I had
just finished two queen-size quilts and I was ready to do something a little
different. I thought might like to do some hand piecing for a while, because
I can carry that with me, and there’s no hurry. I don’t have to keep the sewing
machine set up. So I started looking through my magazines, and I saw
this red and white quilt. and I thought the stars and the blue was so pretty. I
realized that I had red fabric that I had never used. It was a quilt kit that I
had bought, and I didn’t make.So I had plenty of red to use for that. This
quilt was in the Love of Quilting, May June ,2019, edition. I have found out
that a lot of directions for quilts now they give you the list of materials that
you need, and they tell you how to cut it, BUT, what you end up doing is
you’re cutting the whole quilt out at once.
Well, I found that sometimes- there are blocks that are not my favorite, and I
really don’t want to spend that much time or that much money making a whole
quilt. So I looked at the directions, and I was able to decipher what it would
take to make one block – to see if I liked it. This is the quilt block with a
ten and a half inch block, and it turned out to be a lot of fun. It seemed to
fit together really well, and I made another block out of some of the red.
It turned out like this, and there again I was very pleased. These blocks end
up to be ten and a half inches- roughly. A lot of times people take and
‘square’ the blocks; I found out that’s usually when I end up in more trouble-
when I start trying to be real neat and square. I wait until I’m all
finished. Quilt’s going to have a sashing, so the blocks won’t be right
next to each other. Tthe blocks have give-and-take because of some of the
bias edges. Don’t get too excited about cutting them down to size early on.
So I started hand stitching, and as I got going, I said, “Oh,
let’s get this going faster, and I went to the sewing machine. I started sewing the
pieces together, and they went really well. I was able to do some chain piecing. I opened all the seams that I like
to open. Every once and awhile I’d look at the backside to check on the points. The points looked pretty good and most of the time. If there was a problem and seems weren’t deep enough I’d just go back in there to that little part and make the seam a little bit wider. And
then pretty soon I had 20 blocks finished, I was ready to put the
quilt together. I wasn’t going to do forty two blocks. This is the
quilt that I ended up with, and I thought now I don’t need another quilt laying
around so what could I do with it.l I have a 12 year old grandson who’s going
to have a birthday, and I said this is nice and patriotic and has great
colors. I sewed it together and put the sash in between blocks. The sashing was a really nice blue color. Then came the part of getting ready to
quilt each one of the blocks that were in the quilt. I already knew there
was going to be an issue because some of the pieces were so little. If you look at
the little pointed pieces, they’re very small and I had been used to working on
really big blocks on those queen sized quilts. I had to think- I don’t think I’m gonna
do each little piece separate. did I want to do a part, or parts together or the whole block as a whole. There were a lot of good decisions to
make. I decided not to make make all the blocks the same for several reasons. 1) that’s boring to me, and 2) this was going to be a fun quilt
for my grandson, and 3) I could practice some new motifs. That gave me a lot of room for what I wanted to do. I grabbed my practice samples, which I
like because they show me how things really look. Then I went to
my favorite sketchbooks which is one of of my favorite ways right now to keep
notes, samples, and drawings. I can sit at the computer for hours and
work on things and put them in the books. One of the things I starting doing is I putting page numbers. I didn’t have them before. That has been helpful
since I have now have 3 books. Books 1, book 2 and I just bought book 3 ,they
include everything from threads to stitching to some of the sites that I
love to go to and the people that own them. For this project I said
I think I’m going to combined some of the parts of the block together and what are some motifs that are smaller that might work well.
Even if I wanted to consider the block as a whole, what could I use. On a
piece of paper I’d write down a motif on a particular page in a book or I’d just
draw a sample on paper. So I went through the books collecting motifs because I knew if I had 20 blocks, I was going to have a
lot of entertainment. And this is what I came up with; this is my Grandma’s Patriotic Sampler. I did it in different ways: sometimes I used
red thread, sometimes I used blue threads…. I’ve got pebbles; I’ve got clams. I used
the ruler foot; I used a walking foot; I used some of the rulers with the ruler
foot, and right now I’m into doing feathers – I finally think
I’ve got a little bit of a handle on feathers- so I snuck some feathers into a block
which aren’t going to show it very much. It won’t mean anything to him but they mean a lot to me. And then I have a block that’s has his name in one of the corners. The
other part of the quilt was the back and that turned out to be fun. Since it was
for a boy I didn’t want to put a white fabric on the back. That fabric made a nice back. There are so many decisions you make while making a quilt. In this light, the blue
doesn’t look like the brilliant blue that it is, but this is the blue sashing
I wanted to have a motif that went along with this
patriotic kind of a theme for this sampler. I remembered
seeing a wave in one of the pieces I had practiced on my machine .
There was a really neat wave that goes across, but of
course, that was way way too small for what I needed. I did a little
measuring and I came up with a template that I could use to draw on the
sashing. I placed the template on the quilt and drew around it with chalk. Here I’ve used the air erase marker so you can see it.
In this video, you can see t I’ve done one other time already. Excuse the
extras, I’m over here and I’m going to go down and get my bottom thread up;
I found, oops, didn’t quite go far enough. I have found that I like a
tweezer to pull up the bobbin thread. I can find the tweezer every time I need it. I can pull the thread up if I’ve got it
in the right place. You can see I didn’t there. I’ve got both thread up they won’t get tangled in the back. I’m going to
take my not dirty just dyed gloves and show you how neat this wave was to do.
The waves were in three sections. When I was doing the quilt I didn’t do a line that went all the way across I would just do one wave at a time.
you need to go up and you double back and you double back again. Then you’re ready for the next one. my message to you:
remember this is your quilt nobody sees those lines are going to be
gone. It’s a little harder to do for this small piece of small
fabric. When I was doing it with the big quilt, it really moved a lot
better. You get the idea and there I could go and when I go to the long lines
I could do a section after section after section. So I hope in watching this that
I gave you a little inspiration or that you think of a project that you’d like
to do in a way to attack it. This is Stephanie at Hightower Stitching …. and just sew on and sew on