Saturday, July 9, 2016


A couple of weeks ago, I posted (click here) about my Da Gama textiles from South Africa; and that I had decided to make a table runner after holding the fabrics in my stash for 15 years.

The piecing all went as planned keeping it simple to showcase the fabrics.
Because my favorite hand-quilting method has become laborious from old age, bad eyesight, and arthritis, I decided I really needed to practice some machine quilting on this piece.  I've long admired's  method of curvy lines done with a walking foot.  I decided that this was something I could possibly manage on my domestic machine.
With the use of a variegated thread; I, more or less, let my machine do what it wanted.  I'm pleased with the result and found it fun to do, but I have a long way to go to match Jenn's expertise.
 And then, flush with success from the machine-quilting part, I decided to try doing an all-machine binding.  I watched several tutorials, and decided to cut my binding 2" as opposed to my usual 2 1/2 inches.  I sewed the binding onto the back of the quilt to enable bringing it to the front to machine sew it down.
After sewing it down on the front for about 6 inches, I could tell I wasn't going to be happy with my skill at this point.  Ripped that out, tried again, still not happy, ripped it out, and knew I better just hand sew it down.  It is now passable, but I'm still not totally pleased with the hand sewing edge on the front.  Next time, I'll probably revert back to the methods I have used for 40 years -- a 2 1/2" folded double, stuffed with extra batting, and hand-sewn to the back.  
You never know until you try!
 The minute I discovered these fabrics in my stash I knew I had to make a table runner to go with my collection of 19th-century brown transferware.
Nothing like a little sunlight to show the quilting pattern (and my rather wonky binding).
I've added a new page title under the header photo for Table Runners.  I hope to make some more runners in the future as I practice machine-quilting.

I'm joining the following:
What a Hoot Quilts for BOMS Away Monday
Love Laugh Quilt for Monday Making
Cooking Up Quilts for Main Crush Monday
Quilt Story for Fabric Tuesday
Sew Fresh Quilts for Let's Bee Social Wednesday
Quilting Readers Garden for WIPS Be Gone Friday
Confessions of a Fabric Addict for Can I Get a Whoop Whoop Friday
Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish it up Friday


Nann said...

You had me at Da Gama. I fell in love with shweshwe about 10 years ago -- I made a jacket out of blues. It is snugger than I'd like but I've hung onto it because, well, Da Gama. Since then I've bought a couple more bundles at quilt shows -- I have mostly blue but also some red and brown. At the Chicago show in April they didn't have any red. I asked; it's been discontinued (at least, they no longer import it)....And your lovely runner has given me an idea. My winter dishes are brown transferware, too. Thanks for linking up with Monday Making!

Beth @ Cooking Up Quilts said...

I love those fabrics! They look wonderful in your runner, which looks great with your tableware. I think you did a great job on the quilting, and congrats to you for trying something outside your comfort zone. Machine binding - ahh! I have a love/hate relationship with it. I love the speed, not so much the look. But like you, I will keep practicing... Thanks for linking to MCM!

Bonnie said...

Wow those are gorgeous fabrics. Sadly, I've never heard of Da Gama before. Might I recommend you try your machine binding again and use a wider strip. I use anywhere from 2.25 to 2.5" depending on my mood and or the thickness of the bat. It would be very hard to do a binding at 2". I much prefer doing both sides of my binding by machine. I did hand sew a binding a week or two ago and my hands were achy from it. So, yep, old hands and bad eyes get you every time!

Tu-Na Quilts said...

Great table runner! The colors are beautiful and really compliment the dishes. I too have a few well-aged fabrics in my stash (ok quite a few) and have been wondering what to do with them.

Wendy Tuma said...

What a pretty tablerunner -- that blue really makes it pop! The quilting turned out nicely too! You are inspiring me to try it a bit more. I"m not a fan of doing machine binding either -- it kinda stresses me a bit. I like hand stitching the binding. I sure get the eyesight, etc. thing, though, so I foresee having to do more by machine in my future.

the zen quilter said...

That was a great idea to quilt it like that - really adds even more movement to the piece. Fun.