Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Mailing Quilt to a Quilt Show

The time has finally arrived to send "Sunshine Sherbet" out of state. I have mixed emotions. Happy to have it entered in a national quilt show. A wee bit nervous about it arriving safely. 

Prior to shipping, I had final touches (six things) to complete.
  1. The hanging sleeve had to be redone as the previous sleeve was a bit too tight for the pole. I remeasured my original sleeve opening and was short a good quarter inch. Ugh! It seems I have to do everything over twice.
  2. Labeling the quilt which I accomplished by embroidering my name, year of completion, and title of quilt. 
  3. Make a label covering for judging purposes. 
  4. Double check for loose threads and remove lint remnants and possible pet hairs from my sleepy helper.

  5. Wrap and pack per show requirements. 

  6. Off to my local UPS store. Cost to ship with insurance was a surprising $34!  

    Phew! The next time I see Sunshine Sherbet will hopefully be sometime next week hanging up in a convention hall in Columbus, Ohio. Stay tuned for my first out-of-state quilt adventure.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Entering a Quilt Show

Finishing a Quilt

Yahoo! I have completed a long overdue UFO. I had been working on it much too long. Life would happen and sometimes I would tire of it. It was in storage for a couple of years until recently when I was totally motivated and inspired by Teresa at her blog, Fabric Therapy. Teresa was on a quilt marathon to enter a beautiful applique quilt into a show. Click here to view her post.

It occurred to me that I needed such a deadline. I pulled out my UFO to determine how much quilting was needed and happily discovered that there was only a few ice cream cones along the border that needed hand quilting. Yeap, I would also like to enter a quilt show!

First, I had to reassemble by plastic Q-Snap frame to get ready for some serious stitching.

That was the easy and relaxing part. Thereafter, I had a couple of time-consuming and frustrating glitches:
  • All the pretty ice cream cone scallops (I refer to them as the ice cream scoops) had to be bound (a tedious job).
  • The marking lines were difficult to remove due to the length of time in quilt (years).
Binding 67 scallops was a challenge, but I was determined to persevere.  I practiced binding on a sample 16-inch square with similar scallops.  This helped me choose the correct binding width.
Practice binding on practice sample.  
This is when I realized I was in trouble. 

Credit goes to "sandpat" on the Quilting Board message blog. She gave good tips on how she bound a Dear Jane quilt with scallop edges.  She suggested the use of a walking foot which was a godsend.
Prior to adding binding, I basted scallop edges  to prevent unnecessary shifting.

Pinned and sewed 3-5 scallops at a time

The 1.25 inch bias binding stood on end
 but then smoothly folded to backside for hemming (a miracle)

Finally, binding totally attached and blindstitched on back.

Removing years of marking lines was another irritation.  I will never use yellow pencils or yellow chalk ever again!  Yellow pencils and yellow chalk markers should be illegal at quilt stores and shows.  The blue pencils lines were also difficult to remove, perhaps due to the length of time the marking was on the fabric.  Maybe the lines were too thick and heavy in my zeal to hand quilt.  I used several products to lighten, Baby Oxiclean and Pyrex 2.  Markings were lighted, but not totally removed.  Some of prints may have faded ever so slightly.  Should you have the same issue, proceed very slowly and carefully on your cleaning products.  I hope to never get into a marking-removal predicament again...

Next step was making the sleeve and hand stitching to backside of quilt.  Photographing quilt was the last requirement for submission.  In order to do this, I purchased an 8-foot metal closet rod at my local Home Depot.  It was long and strong enough to hold complete quilt.  Since the quilt is 94 inches in length, it had to be propped up on something tall (my curio cabinet with a box on top).  My husband stood on a ladder and held the other side.  Of course on the only day (deadline day) that that I could photograph, it was a rainy dark spring day. The overall color was not as bright as I would have liked, but that is what happens when it is the last minute!

In my relief of finishing the quilt, I have entered it into two shows of which one is juried and one is non-juried.  I am awaiting a response on the juried show.  However, it has been accepted to the National Quilt Association Show which is held in Columbus, Ohio on June 27-29, 2013.  Now I have two good reasons to travel to Ohio.  1) I will be attending several informative lectures of which one is about an organized sewing area, yea!  2) It will be exciting to see Sunshine Sherbet on display at a large show.

(This is not the image that was submitted as an entry)
I am delighted that I persevered!  It was worthwhile working through the glitches.  I almost forgot to give credit to another helper.

However, he kept falling asleep on the job!