The One in Which I Voluntarily Did Custom Quilting

Once again the week has just flown by. I don't have a ton of progress on anything, mostly because I voluntarily chose to do custom quilting on one of the quilts my guild donates to a local charity for fundraising. As always, I seriously underestimated how long it will take me to complete a custom. Remind me to double my time estimate next time I decide to do one of these for someone else.

I have found that people who are not quilters can't tell much of a difference between edge to edge and custom. So why did I decide on custom for this quilt? Well, it was a round robin quilt and the makers had different design aesthetics. There was a lot of plain gray fabric that I felt needed to be dressed up. I started by sketching ideas in mark up mode in the photos app on my iPad. When I was satisfied with my design, I started working on the quilt. I thought I could get in done in a weekend. HA HA HA. It took me four days. I used nine thread colors on it.

My goal with this was to avoid having to switch between my ruler base and my iQ. I'm not sure why, but adding the ruler base always changes my tension significantly. So I ended up using a lot of line pattern to replicate ruler work. Basically I had to mark along each area with a clicker, place and adjust patterns, and then stitch. So it was slow. I drew a lot of my own patterns, including the vine I used in the green borders, the pumpkin seed in the yellow border, all the aforementioned line patterns, and a brick pattern I used on the silo. I also drew all my cross hatch blocks, but some of those didn't quite go as planned. I need more work on ones that go around designs. I did the black borders freehand.

I then decided to go with a pantograph (Ansley Park 2) in a really tiny, 4" row height, scale to fill in all the gray areas. I forgot to measure before I started, so I guessed at my pantograph area.

Here's what my pattern ended up looking like on my iQ.

Prior to taking leave of my senses, I completed two quilts for others. 

This one is Charlene's, quilted with Winterfest.

Sally's, quilted with Ansley Park 2. Yes, this was my trial run for the custom quilt. 

I did make a very, very, very small amount of progress on my OMG, but didn't take a picture.

Oh, and I almost forgot! I can share the quilt I tested with you. This pattern is called Silly Goose and you can purchase it from Yellow Umbrella Quilts. The pattern has two variations and I found it quick and enjoyable to sew.

I used the trimmed HST to make the back.

We've had a couple frosts, so the outdoors plants are not looking ideal. My indoor lettuce is almost ready to harvest and I set up my second Aerogarden over the weekend. I planted four of the herb pods that came with it and two of chives that I sowed. I wanted to do another chive plant, but I only had stickers for two of the pods. I found a shop on Etsy that 3D prints reusable pod covers and ordered some, but they haven't shipped yet. I'll be ready for my next crop though.

We gave the chickens a new food--coolapeno peppers. These are jalapeños with much less heat. As long as they were chopped in tiny parts, the chickens were happy to eat them. We also discovered that fresh clover is the best thing ever!!!

We also discovered that there is a persimmon tree growing just beyond our property line. Someone bought the lot it sits on and clear-cut almost the entire, densely wooded lot. 😭😭 The creatures are not happy, nor are most of the neighbors whose property is adjacent. Anyway, they left a few trees right along the property line. We were trying to decide how many Norway Spruce to purchase to try to regain some of the privacy and noticed the persimmons. We had no idea it was there. My neighbors discovered they have paw paws along their lot line. Lots of discoveries by those of us trying to preserve the trees. 

We were out on a walk the other day when we noticed what could only be squash blossoms growing on a vacant lot (next to the clear cut lot). This lot had been mostly cleared recently, though they left the large trees on that one.  Anyway, we found a bunch of baby gourd plants and some other weird plants that turned out to be moonflowers. How on earth did all those get there? Moonflowers are highly toxic.  Aren't the seed pods weird looking?

One last bit of news. After 5.5 years, my son is getting his braces removed tomorrow!

Linking with My Quilt Infatuation and Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Alycia Quilts.


  1. I keep wanting to try custom quilting but I feel the same way about any quilt I sell--the buyers don't really know the difference so I go with what's quickest. Interesting about the ruler base. I'll have to remember that. (Still haven't gotten my computer yet but hoping to by the end of the year?) That's sad about all the tree removal! I have read that chickens lack the ability to "taste" the heat in hot peppers btw so don't worry about reg jalapenos, etc. (At the end of the season, I let them eat any peppers that are blemished, kinda old etc and from that learned that the red peppers can turn the egg yolks almost orange-ish red. Just an fyi for next year I guess!). We've only gotten down to the 40's here--no frost yet.

  2. Congratulations to your son on getting those braces off! Your custom quilt turned out fantastic -- I feel the same way about custom, which is why I ended up taking my own custom quilt off the frame for "time out" before finishing it. It was just taking way, WAY longer than expected and the customer quilts were multiplying like bunny rabbits in the meantime! I do remember that I had the same issue you mentioned when I had an APQS Millie with IQ, getting wildly different tension if I tried to go back and forth between ruler work and digital motifs without making adjustments. Thanks for reminding me of that, because my current setup uses belts for the computer operation and it's not really feasible to switch back and forth between hand guided and digital because, as soon as I have disengaged the belts so I can move the machine freely for hand guided operation, the computer has no idea where the machine is on the frame and you have to reset the safe area and realign before going back to computerized quilting. So like you, I try to do as much of one kind of quilting as possible before switching to the other, even when that means doing some things with the computer that would be MUCH faster to do by hand.

  3. I love it - took leave of your senses haha!! but it turned out SO amazing!!!!