Monday, 12 September 2016

The Two Sides of A Quilt

Last week I made myself a promise, to tackle the #behemoth from the rear. A quilt has two sides, a front and a back. And a middle, the squishy bit. Rather like ourselves, a front face, a backside and a rather squishy middle. Or like me in any case. I should in my own case be paying attention to my middle but I am concentrating on the backside of the #behemoth.

As I said last week, in my #bravequilter post, I love the interest and creativity of a pieced backing. There is nothing more boring than a plain backing with minimal quilting. Now a plain backing with intricate quilting is a thing of beauty, but my quilting hasn't reached that standard ... yet. I have got over the fear that the pieced backing looks a bit poor mouth, as it did way back in my first quilting adventures in  the 1990s and so I decided to embrace the #behemoth and jump straight in.

My backing is still in two parts. But be patient. The sum of the parts is the whole.

And this is the first part, bobbing in a gentle breeze in the sunshine on Sunday.

I had a few blocks made early on which didn't make the cut. This was mostly because they were bigger blocks with a predominance of white. As the sea glass tones took over the quilt, the white became rather a distraction. Funny how it evolved like that, in the original concept the white was to be the unifying colour between the blues and greens.

I decided to use these large blocks in the back  with the origami fabric I had chosen for  backing. I had bought what was left on the  roll from Cindy, Fluffy Sheep Quilting in Galway. I had thought it might need to be supplemented, but the quilt is a bit bigger than was originally planned. 

I also got a little carried away making the flying geese, a previous #bravequilter challenge I set myself.

This next photo is of the other side of the other side. Again taken on Sunday, and not quite completed but as it was yesterday afternoon.

I had a little spare time this morning and decided to finish off. Remember the generations of women for whom Monday morning was housework? Not in this house. This is what feminism is all about. Sewing instead of hovering!

 I had previously sewn some of the trimmed off blue half square triangles  into two blocks. I sewed these together and just added and cut and added and cut. I love fabric play like this. Its the grown up version of a toddler cutting  and sticking bits of paper on a blank sheet. This strip was topped and tailed with more origami.

My not very good photo was taken today in the blustery wind and rain. No juvenile jokes place about blustery wind and backsides. We are not at home to Mr Smutty as I used to say to my twin sons.
Apologies for the dodgy photos.

Now, I am assuming when I sew these two halves together they will be approximately the same length. I am also assuming that when the sandwich is made, this new backing will be the approximate  length and width. There is a distinct possibility there may be some more cutting and sewing. I just hope I don't "lose" any good bits.

So, the games afoot  as Sherlock Holmes says. Hopefully towards the end of the week I will begin to wrestle with the quilting. Quilt Wrangling. Should this be an Olympic sport?

linking up with Beth at Cooking Up Quilts, Main Crush Monday.


  1. I love pieced backing - a little bit of piecing, a lot of piecing anything goes!! The use of the initial blocks is great and will give the back such interest. Can't wait to see this finished.

  2. Beautiful backside! It is looking just fabulous Helen! My favourite (as I'm sure you know by now) colours of blue and the windblown photos too.

  3. Quilt Wrangling could definitely be an Olympic sport! I love both sides of the back and look forward to seeing it all put together. :) I hope it all works out just right.

  4. Definitely quilt wrangling (and basting) should be a sport! Your back will look so pretty when it's quilted with the top. I love pieced backs but usually don't have the patience for them. I think it's time to rethink that! :) Thanks for linking to MCM Helen!

  5. Might I say, Helen, that is a mighty fine backside you have there. I can't wait to see how this comes together. I've always wanted to play with pieced backsides but haven't quite worked myself to it yet. And I'm pretty sure I qualify for your definition of a quilt...a front, a backside and squishy in the middle, but I'm okay with that...I love quilts.

  6. I do like your idea of feminism. It's only recently I got into pieced backsides, I always thought they took too long to make and took away my quilting time, silly me. Your backside is lovely.

  7. I love a pieced backside. Especially if it helps me use up fabric lines that are specific to a project and they don't really fit into my stash style. I think they are worth the effort. I try to keep the labor intensive bits away from the edges so that I don't have to trim them off. Yours is turning out fabulous!

  8. Brilliant! I love a pieced back: like that element of surprise when the quilt is turned over. I really, really like that you have used up leftover blocks and also the variations in scale you will end up with.


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