Earlier this year, I joined an "I Spy" fabric swap at Kimbo West's blog, A Girl and a Glue Gun. Now, I'm not a quilter, but I do have a "practice grandchild" -- my next-door-neighbor's little boy. He's turning two this month, and I wanted to make him something special from his "Tante" (as he calls me). What better than an I Spy quilt? So I signed up. I sent in my squares (I had to send in 10 squares each of 10 different fabrics; in return, I would get a package of 100 squares, all different). I got my package of squares back during the summer, and the project sat awaiting my attention. Finally, its turn came a few weeks ago, and I got started piecing the squares together.
The only hitch was that there were quite a few very "girly" fabrics in the mix, and this boy's parents are kind of on the "traditional" side, so I had to substitute about 15 fabrics. I didn't have that many in my own stash, but the amazing Julie Bowersett came to my rescue and provided the missing fabrics that were just perfect. Thank you, Julie!!!
I was also in a quandary as to what to use for backing. The solution presented itself when I was at the Sewing Expo, and I came across the SewBatik booth. I had bought their extra-wide border print batiks in the past to make the Folkwear Kimono. Well, they had something new: extra-wide batik flannel!! I bought two yards in a mottled dark blue/green colorway.
The assembly itself went pretty quickly; it was all done by machine. There are a few spots where the seams didn't quite line up, but hey, I never claimed to be a master quilter! It was also quilted on my Juki industrial -- which doesn't have a walking foot, yet somehow I ended up with virtually no shifting or puckering. I'm constantly amazed by that machine. I just stitched in the ditch along all the seam lines. The binding was a strip of the same flannel as the backing, on the straight of grain, machine-stitched to the front, then turned and hand-stitched to the backing. I digitized the label with Embird and machine-stitched it to the backing (before sandwiching the quilt, of course) with a fine zigzag stitch.
And here's the final product!
As you can see, I didn't do any sashing or anything like that. I just wanted to have the jumble of pictures, for maximum
Here you can see the backing fabric:
I'll be presenting the quilt to the birthday boy on Saturday, and can't wait to see his reaction. In the meantime, I'm glad I'm done, as I'll be spending the next two days in a computer class and will have zero time for sewing!