I’ve been working on my Terra Australis quilt for seven months, and I’m thrilled to report that I finished the quilt top yesterday.
I have blogged more about this project than any other project. The posts below include some details about tutorials I followed, but after I made a number of blocks, I started making adaptations to some of the tutorials. A good example of that is the last block I made for this project, Block 25.
Starting on 1/3/16, I wrote about the fabric for this quilt in my Sunday Stash #9-Terra Australis post. On 2/1/16 I wrote my post, 2016-Change in Direction Already where I wrote about the first four blocks that I completed for my Terra Australis quilt. On 3/1/16 I wrote a post called Bee Blocks and More-February ’16 that included information about Blocks 5-8. Blocks 9-13 were blogged about in my March Terra Australis and Bee Blocks post. On 4/25/16 I blogged about Blocks 14 and 15 in my April 2016 Blocks post. I took some time off from this project to complete the Breaking Bad Wall Hanging for my great-nephew, John, and to get ready for Glamp Stichalot in early June in Ann Arbor. After I returned from Michigan, the first quilt-related thing I did was to sew Blocks 16 and 17 blogged about in my Building Blocks Tuesday–Quilting is in My Blood Guest Blogger post. The second weekend in July, I started the final push. Block 18 is referenced in these two posts, Terra Australis July ’16 WIP Update and 2016 Q3 Finish-Along Goals. Then I kicked it into high gear and sewed seven blocks in four days blogged about in my Last Block Laid Out for Terra Australis Quilt post.
Until this past weekend, I was going to make the quilt a little longer than wide by adding a top and bottom border. I made quite a few square-in-a-square mini blocks and even sewed some together.
But I decided not to use that border for a couple of reasons. It became clear that if my sewing was absolutely perfect that the border would be the exact length it needed to be because I had calculated the math. But you can see in the photo above, there are small discrepancies in the mini block size, and I wasn’t going to be able to make it work without be jerry-rigging some corner strips, and I just didn’t want to do that. Plus the bigger this quilt top got, the harder it was to wrangle around my sewing machine and ironing board. And my shoulders started to cuss me out!
So I decided that I could live with a turquoise dot fabric outer border, so the measurement of quilt top is 82″ by 82″. When I actually use the quilt, I will pull it down a little lower on the bed, so I think this size will work perfectly for me.
I want you all to know that the square-in-a-square mini blocks are not going to go to waste. I’m going to use them in a 36″ x 36″ kitty quilt that I will place at the end of my bed to protect the big quilt from the three cats who seem to feel that my bed is their bed. I’m going to use the Moonlight Star block designed by Gerri Robinson which will require that I make more half-square triangles, but by now, I am a HST machine! I created this block in Quiltography, and I like how it looks:
And then I did a mock-up of what nine of these blocks would look like again using Quiltography, and I LOVE the secondary design that is created using these blocks.
For the back of the quilt, I’m just using a three-yard cut of grey prism fabric from BackSide Fabrics. One of the first quilting blogs I started following about two years ago was Yvonne’s Quilting Jetgirl blog, and it was from her blog that I found out about BackSide Fabrics. I love using their 108″ wide fabric and not having to piece a quilt back. And I have to tell you, they are fast! I ordered fabric from them on July 29th, and it was delivered to me clear across the country today, August 1st.
I’m taking my quilt top (I know many of you refer to a quilt top as a “flimsy” but to me that sounds like an insult!) tomorrow to my local quilt store, ThreadBear, to have it long-arm quilted. I bought the binding fabric today, so I hope to start binding the quilt fairly soon after I get it back. And then, when it is all done, I plan to do this quilt justice and photograph it outside with good outdoor lighting. I even have a possible quilt photography site in mind. Then it will be time to enjoy the fruits of my labor. Hopefully we won’t be in the midst of another heat wave!
Linking up to Cooking Up Quilts: Main Crush Monday
Mary, dear sister, you are a force of nature!!
Congratulations on this wonderful finish Mary! How exciting to see it finished. It looks wonderful. Doesn’t it feel wonderful to get these long term finishes done. I’m with you on the term flimsy. I hate it…I’ve never been sure why I hate it but you’ve given a good explanation that might fit for me. A flimsy sounds so insignificant, but a lot of work goes into piecing a quilt top.
Oh, it turned out beautifully, Mary. And great use of the left over square in a square blocks. I love the idea of a kitty quilt for the foot of the bed!
So much to say here , I love your quilt . I prefer it without the border , I think it gives it a more modern look . A kitty quilt – that’s a new one on me but a great idea . And… Having told Yvonne her backside was great , I’ll just tell you the same !
Great to see the completed top – looks great!
It is soooo beautiful!! And it’s brilliant of you to make a kitty quilt. 🙂 Congrats on finishing this project – I’m looking forward to seeing it quilted! Thanks for sharing this on MCM.
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Mary, this is beautiful!!!
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