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Archive for March, 2011

Street Art

Isn’t this odd? It’s knitted and wrapped around a tree on a side street in downtown Richmond (Shockoe Slip). It’s behind my office building, right outside my parking garage. I made sure to snap its picture this morning before it rained since I didn’t think it would look as nice soggy.

Street ArtStreet Art closeup

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Introducing…

Pure Sunshine aka Canaries aka the 10-year-quilt.

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Taking this off the UFO list!

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Success with Synthrapol!

After 6 washings, 4 with Woolite in cold water and 2 with Synthrapol in hot water, I am very happy with the results!

Depending on the light you’re in, there is a slight blue cast on the front, so I don’t think absolutely all of the dye came out of the yellow fabric there. But enough of it came out that I can change the status of this quilt from “ruined” to “almost ruined.” The “after” shot makes it look like the yellow fabric is faded, but that’s just the poor lighting in the picture. None of the fabrics faded.

Before

After

All the dye came out of the backing fabric, that was a major relief!

Before

After

I was a little concerned about the fate of the label that I had printed on my computer using EQ Printables fabric sheets that I buy from The Electric Quilt Company. Interestingly, the label has that blue cast to it (it was originally white) but the printing didn’t fade a bit. That’s good news for the label I’m going to put on Anya’s quilt which I expect as it’s a baby quilt will get a lot of use and multiple washings. These are the Cotton Lawn sheets.

Happy sewing!

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My goal in 2011 is to finish all my quilting projects.

Yesterday I put the final stitch in the binding of one such UFO, officially titled “Pure Sunshine” in the magazine the pattern was published in, but I’ve been calling it “Canaries” because of the fabric in it. I made the top in 2001 and it’s languished all these years. On the label, I called it the “Ten-Year Quilt.”

It’s not an important quilt. It’s not a gift, it’s only for me. I saw the pattern in a magazine (which I can’t put my hands on right at the moment, it was probably published in 2000 or 2001) and just loved the canary fabric. I went on a quilting retreat down in North Carolina in 2001 and we made a field trip to Mary Jo’s fabric shop in Gastonia, just west of Charlotte. I couldn’t believe it, but they had that fabric. So I bought it and made the top shortly thereafter.

I used Sharon Schamber’s glue basting method on the binding. It takes more effort than using pins or clips, but the binding doesn’t move around while you hand stitch it and you get a better result. I also used her preferred method of the ladder stitch rather than the applique stitch I’ve been using for years. I like the ladder stitch much better.

I had had it quilted by a local longarmer. It seemed rather stiff and I had gotten some glue on the outside of the binding, so I decided to throw it in the washer to see if it would soften up. I used Woolite rather than Tide and cold water. These two detergent choices were all I had on hand.

Tragedy struck! The solid navy blue fabric bled like there’s no tomorrow. I usually pre-wash my fabrics but I must not have done it that time. Or maybe I did and it still had a lot of excess dye left to release. I also didn’t think to throw in a color catcher. And to add insult to injury, instead of tossing in an old towel to keep the washer balanced, I put in the flannel quillow I use in the family room on chilly nights in front of the TV because the dog sits on it and it needed to be washed. I didn’t see that the dye had bled in a couple of small places on it and I put it in the dryer. Hopefully I can get that out with Oxy Clean.

Click on the pictures to view them larger. And by the way, that’s a variegated thread in the quilting.

I washed the quilt two more times (again using Woolite) and used the color catchers. The second wash produced a really blue catcher, the third one was still pretty clean. I hope that doesn’t mean this is as good as it’s going to get. The solid yellow backing fabric has released most of the excess dye but I can’t see any difference in the yellow on the front. The two fabrics are different and the backing was purchased within the last couple of years, and I’m pretty sure I pre-washed it, if that makes any difference.

So, I will be stopping at Quilting Adventures on my way home tonight to pick up some Synthrapol, I hope they have it in stock. If Synthrapol doesn’t help, I may just soak it in Oxy Clean.

I know I’m in good company, this happened to Alex Anderson. In my twelve years of quilting, this is the first time for me.

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