Thursday, 20 August 2015

"One Very Happy Camper"

Many of my regular readers will recall the lovely bright quilt top I put together in February, called "Cabin Beneath the Stars" - photo of the finished top in the March post.  The top was made using some left over jelly roll strips used in the "Bugs in a Rug" floor quilt made for Master K. I added a few more fabrics from my stash and made the top large enough to fit the queen size mattress in our camper trailer. Of course, I didn't give any thought as to HOW I was going to quilt it on my home machine, OR what to use for the backing! So it was put away with the other PIPs in my "must-do" work basket.

We are now only two weeks away from the start of our three month adventure to Western Australia, so I thought it was time to put aside all other projects and try to finish our "camping" quilt - not withstanding a few "dilemmas" of course!

Dilemma One:  What to back it with? And do I want to add batting? My first thoughts were to use one of my microfibre blankets - you know the ones - they are fluffy and very warm. Nope, not big enough. Search the stash - nothing that fit the idea I had in mind. Oh, but wait - what about those few winter fabrics in the laundry cupboard? Ah, herein lies the beauty of the saying - "I'll buy that fabric on special - might come in handy for a project one day". And there I discovered a long forgotten "end-of-bolt" warm corduroy - metres of it -- certainly more than I needed for this project. And NO, there would be no batting used.

Dilemma Two:  Fabric not wide enough but lots of length.  So I measured, and measured again (always remember - Measure twice, Cut once). Cut the desired lengths (which was really the width of the quilt and not the length), and stitched together to give me the desired width and length. Now with the two pieces joined there was more length than the size of the quilt (and it was slightly wider - about 2.5").

Stitching the self-binding bottom
Dilemma Three:  Yep. What to do with the extra length. Do I cut it to size? Nope. I decided to make it longer, to fit under or over the pillows. Process:  As there was to be no batting I decided to join the top and backing fabric together like a sack, so it became more of a warm coverlet rather than a thick quilt. First I joined the top and bottom of the top to the top and bottom of the backing. Not a good move as the backing was slightly wider than the top - only by 2.5" each side, but enough to make it all out of shape. Unpick the bottom seam and have a rethink. Presented Dilemma Four - of course.

Dilemma Four:  Where to from here? Isn't it a great feeling when you suddenly have a creative thought and things start to come together. Laying the conjoined top and backing out on the guest double bed I discovered there was enough backing fabric along the bottom and sides to create a "self-binding". So I set to with pins and binding clips to fold and pin the bottom binding first. Took it to the machine - and voila - an open sided "sack".
Stretchy sides?

Bottom and side self-binding complete
I was a little hesitant about stitching the sides. As I mentioned, the backing fabric is a warm corduroy (more like velveteen actually), but the only thing I was concerned about was that it is a STRETCH cord. A little more difficult to sew but what the heck. I had successfully managed to deal with the other Dilemmas and was determined there would be no more. So I decreased the pressure on the machine foot and slowly stitched the sides a small section at a time (stitch, stop, remove pins/clips, adjust) and in no time at all there was one finished coverlet ready for the camper trailer bed.

Yay - Finished Coverlet!
The OGO was a little disappointed that it was not actually a "quilt" per-se, with no warm batting. But he was still impressed with the finished coverlet (more impressed that I had ACTUALLY FINISHED another project from my PIPs basket!!!!).

So I am One Happy Camper looking forward to our three month adventure to Western Australia starting on 3rd September.  If you would like to follow our adventure you are more than welcome to go on over to our travel blog -

We'll be posting photos and a little summary of the different areas we will be travelling through.

A very Happy Camper!!!

But before then I think I may have time to put up one more post here as I hope to finish a couple of more things before we leave home. So now I'm off to the Woman's Cave to see what other creative things I can work on.

Hugs and Happy Stitching 


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