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Friday, October 9, 2015

Tough to tackle

     I am not a restorer of quilts. I make new ones. Someone from church asked me to redo a quilt that an aunt had made her. I said no. They quilt came to me anyway in a plastic bag. My husband said immediately to put it in the garage. I did a post on its awfulness at that time. http://artinsearch.blogspot.com/2014/05/the-very-bad-quilt.html
     After washing and washing, I have moved it about 30 times and looked at it. It is made of upholstery fabric and a kind of polyester knit that was disintegrating and was tied. I had taken it all apart- batting, backings (more than one), binding (again sewn over), and tried to think how to fix it.
     Finally, in September, I made my mind up to get it done and out. It was not a good quilt when it was made, and it was not going to be attractive no matter what I did. I had to rip off the blue polyester strips holding the upholstery coins together- it could not be patched. 

Huge mess. I bought some bottom weight navy twill cotton for the strips and borders. Ripped it to length, sewed it to the coins. Added the bottom and top borders. It was a wobbly mess. Advice came in that I should have staystitched the upholstery fabric. Too late- it was going to get finished. 
    I put it on the long arm the long way across and basted it every 5" to keep it stable. Then I quilted it all in long lines along the longest direction. Ripped out all the basting. Put on a green plaid type binding. Bundled it all up and it went back to church on Sunday. I had thread/string crud everywhere with this beast- BUT- I finished it and it is gone. It literally sucked all the joy out sewing for me. It really did not look great- but it was clean, serviceable, and solidly sewn. I do not like the way it turned out, but did not know how else to restore and move it out. Trying to get it out of my mind.


6 comments:

Peg said...

Well, the photo looks good. Hope you say NO the next time someone asks for a "favor" like this. And also hope that after all your blood sweat and tears, the neice actually unbundles it and uses it.

Perhaps a good verse for a quilter's inpiration -

Luke 6:38 Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”

Vicki W said...

Well, you did your good deed for the year! I hate those kind of projects but often they are the most appreciated and loved.

Shelley: the Dread Pirate Rodgers said...

If the owner of the quilt was truthful to you about how much that quilt meant to her (but wait .... if it did, why on earth was it in such a sorry mess?? never mind .. moving on ..), then she will be *thrilled* beyond measure at the miraculous restoration job you have achieved.

You have every right to be pleased as punch with yourself and your efforts. And when that owner starts praising you to everyone she knows, you need to start practicing your explicit "NO!". "No, I can't fix this." "No, I can't fix this." Just be a broken record. Continue to refuse to accept the package if it is continually brought to you. You do NOT need to give anyone a *reason* for your refusal .. all courtesy demands is that you give them a 'yes' or 'no'.

Exuberantcolor/Wanda S Hanson said...

You are a better person than I am. I would have stuck with "if she takes off the backing" and told her you could wait until her hand healed from the fall so she could do it.

Elizabeth said...

It is so hard to say no. You did a lovely job and now you have completed your good deed for the decade. Not that you would ever be anything but kind and good, but if anyone else comes to you with such a project again, you can tell them that you can't get it done until 2025.

Jan said...

I think it looks great. I have a policy for people who ask me to mend. I'll do it as long as they sit in the sewing room with me keep me company and help me by pressing, seam ripping, etc. This has REALLY cut down on the requests, LOL. You will never do this again, I know you won't! In the meantime, it looks good and it's GONE.