Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Fuzzy-Wuzzy Blankie

I know.
A pieced, quilted, fur blanket is decadent - even for me.  I offer no apologizes for this.
You see:  it gets COLD up here on the mountain!!!   I have always maintained that, given a choice, I prefer a cold climate to a hot one.   Now, we all know why:  so that I have a reason (I do try to be pragmatic!) to sew, and wear, warm, fuzzy, soft, bulky and cuddly things.  Sybarite that I am, I love texture - and plenty of it.  Hence: this quilt.

This is not a typical quilt by anyone's definition of the term.
But then, I have never aspired to be typical.

I started with a kit for assembling a fake fur throw.
I read the directions, really I did.  I even thought I was following them.  However, the first instruction  --  "cut printed fur into 9 - 8in wide strips"  --  threw me.  I started cutting the strips, following the instructions to cut each fabric, single layer with scissors rather than a rotary cutter.  This I did, until after the 7th strip, when I ran out of fur.  S * I * G * H.   A closer look at the instructions revealed that there had been no mention of which direction to cut the strips.  Selvage to selvage??  Lengthwise??     I used the SWAG method and cut selvage to selvage, which gave me the longest strips.  The process deteriorated from there.
Once I was done cutting the fabrics as close to the instructions as I could, I proceeded to arrange the strips of fabric according to the photo on the front, and attach them to each other.  Having no advice on this from the instructions (it was roughly around this time that I tossed the instruction sheet into the recycling bin), I attached the strips with my serger set on a wide 4-thread, with Wooly Nylon in the upper looper.  So glad I thought to do that!!!   Fake fur creates A LOT of lint.  A LOT.  My cats loved chasing puffs of fur lint around the house.  My vacuum cleaner was less enthusiastic.

I could have pieced the strips, borders, and sashings together, and been done with it  --  that was the original design. [as near as I can remember].  But I didn't like the networking of serger thread that only matched some of the fabrics, showing.  Also, as I may have mentioned, it can get a tad nippy at this elevation, so I didn't think a warm backing, with tight, cotton batting between would hurt a thing.

Since I have taken the Stashbusting 2014 pledge, I couldn't run to a store, or website to buy backing fabric.  Not to worry  ---  for several moves now, I have carted around a thick cotton flannel fitted sheet that no longer fits any bed we own.  I couldn't get rid of it  --  it was great fabric.  I cut out the elastic (yes - I saved it.  I'll use it someday), and used the sheet for the backing.  It feels great!!!!

Black machine quilting thread (Gutterman) was used to stitch-in-the-ditch on the topside, using my Pfaff's Quilting stitch.  This is a back-and-forth stitch that, on the bobbin side, looks like hand-quilting. [which is as close as any project I ever make will come to actually being hand-quilted]

For binding, since this blankie was all about texture, I wanted a satin binding.  Behold!  My stash contained 3/4 yd. of a black crepe-back satin that I cannot remember buying or using. (!?).  It took some piecing, but there was just quite enough to make a wide bias bound edge.

When all is said and done, the most important thing you need to know,
 is that this blankie is kitty-tested,

and kitty-approved.