New York Beauty Quilt

I need to get this off my chest. I am not meant to be a quilter. I do like free-motion stitching and I do like regular machine stitching, but anything larger than the cat blanket that I made last month is NO FUN! I am sorry to say that I was cursing right and left as I struggled to quilt a queen size bed quilt last month. I knew it would be tough. The top which my mom had pieced and given to me three years ago, languished in a bag in my closet while I tried to muster the desire to put it together. Since I had been practicing my free-motion quilting with the lap quilts and tablecloth (also pieced by Mom) I figured it was finally time to tackle the large quilt.

The pattern is New York Beauty and it is beautiful. My mom is a genius with fabric choices.

new york beautyI have fabric for a bed skirt. That may get sewn sometime before this decade is over.

To start, Mom recommended that I quilt it in sections before putting it together. That seemed like a great idea except that the pattern was on a diagonal and that’s the way it would be quilted.  A better way for diagonal quilting would be a “low fat” or “low carb,” I don’t remember which it is called. That is where the backing  and top are all stitched together and the batting is cut away on one side to reduce bulk for the first bit of stitching.

DSCN0233The backing is the yellow. The top is rolled back from the top right corner to expose the batting. I’ve cut the batting away in a wavy cut to make it easy to line up again when it is time to rejoin them. After I quilted the diagonal center section, I turned and then quilted the corner with the batting. I then rejoined the cut batting with loose hand stitching and quilted the last corner.

DSCN0227I put my machine on a large table to support the weight of the quilt. Better yet, I found it most helpful to have a table also on the left of my chair to support the quilt as it feeds into the machine. Even so, the quilt would get hung up and stop dead. Free-motion isn’t really free when the fabric doesn’t move freely. Hence the cursing. My straight line, stitch in the ditch around the points isn’t too straight and my curves and spirals in the negative space are not too smooth. DSCN0335Repeat for 72 blocks and it’s amazing that I finished in 3 weeks.

You can see the stitching better on the back side. I liked stitching the spirals. If only they hadn’t gone on for so many blocks.

DSCN0338I’m glad I have my beautiful quilt finished. It will be used in my guest bedroom. Maybe by next Christmas I’ll have the rest of the room as pretty as my new quilt.

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5 Responses to New York Beauty Quilt

  1. I know what you mean, I think quilts can look lovely, but they look awfully tedious to make so I’ve never had any desire to try

  2. Given that I find even a medium-sized curtain is inclined to fall off the table as I work it, something heavy like a quilt gives me the horrors – I am so impressed with you for finishing it!

  3. Maryvonne says:

    Wow. This is absolutely beautiful, but what a sweat! I don’t know how you managed it. Congratulations. Maybe I will have the courage to tackle the quilt I started about six or seven years ago (and it’s not as complex as yours). I haven’t got much faith.

  4. nita says:

    The quilt is beautiful!!!! Wow what a journey you had. I love the swirls stitches! Even if they are not all the same size I think it adds interest to the quilt. I like to see a handmade quilt with some little imperfections than a handmade quilt that is perfect.Any way I love it and think you are very brave to take on such a big undertaking!

  5. alison cook says:

    I can’t imagine working on that – you’re a saint! I’d have cursed and bitched and ended up throwing the sewing machine across the room. the quilt is such a beauty – you really did it justice with that beautiful quilting.

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