Monday, September 19, 2011

marathon quilt // baptist fan marking and quilting

lately, i've been making a bit of progress on grandma's quilt. after taking it over to my friend's house for an evening of quilting + dinner, i ambitiously thought i could draw out the fans, lay the pieces out and baste the 'quilt sandwich' together in the span of 3-4 hours.  after 4 hours and i'd barely been able to draw out 1 row of fans i knew i needed to re-evaluate.  this thing is HUGE.  also, that clover water soluble blue marker only drew about 2 rows before it gave out completely. 

the next day, i headed over to one of the only quilt stores in NYC, the city quilter, and picked up some water soluble mechanical fabric pencils (one in white; one in gray).  the markings from these aren't as dark, but i was able to mark the whole rest of the quilt using just a few leads.

the first 2 pictures are the clover marker marks, and the second the mechanical pencil.  i ended up drawing the fans using this little cardboard guide.  i made it by cutting a long strip of cardboard, drawing out a straight line down the center, and then stabbing it to make little holes every inch.  the first hole at the bottom is the anchor (and i'd stick a pin through it and never pick it up till all of the fans were drawn), then i'd stick my pencil in each hole, one at a time and swing it around, drawing the arcs.

i made my template with the largest arc at 13".  i'm realizing most people stop at 8".  my quilting hoop is only about 11" so i have to do some partial arcs sometimes.  i'd go with 8" next time.

also, 2 straight days of marking this quilt, i came across this amazing blog, with instructions on how to freehand baptist fans. which i may try the next time. marking these things seriously was the worst.

baptist fan quilt marking

however, in the end it's turning out pretty well.  i've quilted a few fans so far and all seems to be going well.
i even love the fans on the plain muslin.  you can really see how they stick out.  i'm realizing this is going to take MONTHS to finish though.  yikes.



stephjmg said...

It will be so worth it! You're doing a great job--definitely an heirloom piece.

Katherine said...

WOW! I haven't attempted quilting since I had to finish one of my mothers. Yours looks REALLY good.


acommonthread said...

Thanks! Although, I have to admit that my grandmother did the piecing. I've just been finishing it by doing the quilting :)