Last time I showed the mostly completed flimsy of a baby quilt begun in March with members of our church's ladies group string-piecing colorful 4 1/2 inch blocks. The group pieced 98 squares, enough to complete two baby quilts. After adding sashing, we decided the design was busy enough that elaborate quilting would be overwhelmed, and decided to keep it simple, with stitch-in-the-ditch quilting and perhaps a bit of linear quilting in the sashings if time permitted.
At this point, I need to admit that I hadn't done any free motion quilting since early September, and sadly discovered that FMQ skills disappear WAY more rapidly than they are gained! I had hoped to add some free motion quilting to this, but without adequate time to practice some of the rusty skills, it looked like this was going to be a problem! So, having decided that the linear quilting design was in order, after stitching each block in the ditch with the dual feed foot, a series of X's were free motion quilted in each of the sashings. I had not attempted to FMQ straight lines other than brief practice in the past, but was happily surprised that as long as the lines aren't much more than 4-5 inches long, they are quite easily done. So, white ceramic lead Sewline pencil and soap slivers in hand, the X design was marked out and quilted this past weekend, and this is the completed quilt.
My friend Sarah completed a second similar quilt, and here is a photo of both just before they were turned in to the school, to be sold during the annual school benefit auction on May 3.
Since completing the Checkered Past quilt, I've resumed hand quilting of the scrappy vintage bow-tie quilt found at a small local estate sale last summer. While I'd love to have this completed by the end of April, it will more likely be toward the end of May before the quilting is finished and a binding added. I'd love to find a yard or so of a nice vintage 1950s fabric for the binding, but wonder if it would be better with a plain muslin binding. The back is a single width of a nice off-white or natural muslin that might be easier to match than finding 1950s fabric that would coordinate. The white ground pieces on the front are a very loosely woven vintage fabric, perhaps from a sheet or tablecloth, very soft but too ravelly for use as a binding, even if I had extra. What do you think?