Perfecting imperfections- taming the wave part 2.

You know how you will be doing something, and you know it is not perfect, but you kind of think that it will be alright but the whole time in the back of your head you hear a voice says you are going to have to fix it, but you decide not to listen? And then it drives you crazy and you have to fix it only now it is a whole lot harder to fix then it was before.

Let's go back to the quilt that I was having fits at when I was up at the Crow Barn- the one that I had to rip off all the bindings and sleeves. Yes, I got back from the Barn and took this quilt- and ripped and ripped. At the Barn with the help of Rick and Denise Roberts I was able to square up the quilt and get measurements to help me trim the piece when I got home. And I used Sharon Schamber's binding technique to get things better? Remember that?

Well one thing that I did was I followed her directions to a T. And she only uses 2 1/2" bindings which I thought were kind of skimpy- but I soldiered on. I usually use 9" binding that is doubled over resulting in 4" bindings... but I did not listen to my gut and persevered on. And to tame the waves on the edges I machine basted stitches and kind of gathered them in to make the quilt the same size as the binding.
And then I hung the quilt up with rods in the top and the bottom. And it was kind of flat- but honestly not as flat as the pieces I have been doing since- and I kept hoping against hope that it would flatten out perfectly- but it didn't.
And for five weeks I have looked at that damn quilt hanging there- taunting me to do it right.

So this week, I once again took it off the wall, and removed all of the hanging sleeves and ripped out all four bindings- and started over- from the very beginning. I put it on the floor and with my new 72" metal ruler and my two 24" Omnigrid squares I measured that baby all over again. And I re-trimmed. Since it is not the piece selected for Color Compositions I will use it for another show I am working on- and that meant I did not have to worry about an 80" minimum. So I trimmed about 3" off all sides and got it really really squared. But I still had the wavy edge problem!%^&*!# 

AHA! I remembered back to my clothes sewing days and dug out a series of books written by Claire B Schaeffer. I recalled a technique she used to ease in fabric around waistbands that involved hand sewing many small lines of parallel stitches that slightly gathers in the fabric while keeping the fabric flat rather than puffy and gathered.

I tried it, and voila it worked!!!!!

So I sat down again with my unruly but square quilt and went around to every area that was not perfectly flat and finally tamed it. These stitches are hidden by my normal 4" bindings.
It took me probably 4 whole days of solid work to get back to square one- but I feel so good that I took the extra time to correct the imperfections. This is a technique I will use over and over again. Thank goodness for couture sewing!