Sunday, February 19, 2012

Quilting to Pass the Time - Sis 3

My husband is a CPA and external auditor. Thus, from November to March, I am an accounting widow. Monday through Friday, he leaves the house at 7:30 a.m. and returns at 10 p.m., with just enough energy to turn on his laptop for another hour of work. His down time is watching 10 minutes of Sports Center while brushing his teeth before bed.

Weekends are better. My CPA only has to work 6-8 hours on Saturdays and put in a few hours from home on Sundays. As a bonus, we usually make it through church without any phone calls from the audit team.

I'm pretty independent, but even for me, a two-hour-a-week relationship leaves a bit of a gap. Last "busy season," I decided to fill the gap with a bit of creativity.

My mother taught me to sew when I was very young. With her help, we kids made everything from doll clothes to prom dresses. Quilts were frequent and favorite projects. Our living room would be swallowed for a week at a time with a quilt stretched out on the wooden frames. When we could escape the actual sewing, we loved to camp out under the colorful canopy and watch movies. About the only time my mother ever watched movies was while quilting or canning. We grew up with a love of canned peaches, John Wayne, pieced patterns, and Cary Grant.

So, when faced with an empty house and time on my hands, I turned to quilting. I found a great pattern online at luxury my mother never had. I modified the pattern a little to suit my creativity and then took advantage of a great sale on cotton print. Armed with a couple of good ol' black and white movies, I was in business.

Piecing the top went smoothly enough. The tricky part came when it was time to quilt. I'm woefully frameless. Unfortunately, our California apartment has no room for storage, so buying frames wasn't practical. Instead, I resorted to safety pins.

I moved the couch, then stretched the quilt back across the room. With heavy-duty straight pins, I secured it to the floor. Next, I layered on the batting and finally the pieced top, which I pinned to the floor as well. Once everything was nice and taut, I pinned the layers together using large safety pins. Presto!

Although the safety pins didn't keep the layers quite as straight and bunch free as frames would have done, I did like the freedom they allowed. I could stitch for an hour or two in the evenings, then fold the quilt up and put it away until the next opportunity. Of course, that did mean I missed out on the movie-perfect-tent...

This week, I finished my quilt! I'm quite happy with the results.

Now, with another busy season in full swing, what's next?

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