Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Crazy Cats Quilt

This was a kit that I bought at a quilt show. It came with the pattern and all the fabric to make the quilt. These are hand-dyed fabrics. This quilt is approximately 29" x 24" and hangs in our upstairs hallway. I started this quilt in late 2001 or early 2002. I believe I finished it in 2003.

I used hand applique and embroidery, machine piecing, and hand quilting techniques as I made this quilt.

I just love the expressions on these cats' faces!

With the exception of the noses, anything you see here that is black is embroidery. The noses are made of black fabric and then appliqued on the cats' faces. I pretty much followed the pattern when making this quilt and didn't really alter anything about the cats or their expressions.

I think that cat in the middle is thinking, "How did I get stuck between these two guys?"

Okay, this is known as "echo quilting" (for obvious reasons). When I look back at this, I really think I went a bit overboard on this. It's another one of those "WHAT was I thinking?" moments.

At the quilt show I bought this from, the vendor had a sample of this quilt hanging in her booth. I remembered that it was quilted like this and I thought it was neat, so I planned to do it the same way.
I quilted this without measuring or marking any quilting lines....just by sight. At some point after I finished this quilt, I saw that sample quilt again at another quilt show (same vendor was there). It was at that time I realized how crazy I was to quilt these lines so close together...these are about 1/4" or less apart. The quilt hanging in the both had the lines quilted more like 1/2" apart! I guess by the time I started the quilting on this, my memory of that sample had faded somewhat.

But, no matter! I certainly logged a lot of quilting hours and improved my stitching while I worked on this!

Here is more of the quilting. If you look REALLY closely at the cat here, you can also make out some of my applique stitches along the edge of the cats' spots, tail, and body.

Again, not sure what I was thinking....once I got started on the first few rows, I had to keep going with the rows that close together or rip it all out and start over. So, I just kept going....and going....and going...

....and going....and going....

By the way, I measured these stitches and they average 8 stitches per inch. I honestly can't see getting them any smaller than this, but somehow, somewhere, people are quilting 10 and 12 stitches per inch! I ask you....HOW is that possible?

Here you can see my applique stitches. Look along the edges of the cats' body pieces. The idea is that you're not SUPPOSE to be able to see them, but depending on the lighting, they aren't that difficult to spot.

You can really see my applique stitches here along the cat's jaw and chin.

Just another close-up.

And the back...

This is the quilting as seen from the back.

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