It is February, and in much of the country a thick layer of snow blankets the ground. Things are different here – in Northern California, we were lucky enough to have a week of spring-like weather, around 70 degrees. So I decided to blanket my driveway with a quilt.
As you already know, I am NOT a big fan of basting quilts – that is, connecting the top, batting, and bottom fabric of a quilt before you sew through all three layers. It’s really a drag. The traditional method involves lots and lots of safety pins. I do like the quilter’s brass ones, shiny gold-tone pins that are very pliable. And you can use a spoon to close and open the pins to save wear on your fingers. But to pin-baste a quilt that’s bigger than crib size (in this case, about 60 inches square) takes just about forever.
So I turned to an alternative: 505 Spray & Fix adhesive. Many quilt-makers swear by this stuff, I’m told. I had used it once before and it worked pretty well. You spray the batting (NOT the quilt or fabric) and it gets sticky, and then you place fabric down and it adheres. Although it has no CFC’s, the spray does contain chemicals and I was kind of concerned. The manufacturer recommends using it in a highly ventilated area. So it occurred to me: what better space than outside?
I hadn’t thought of one potential problem: Wind. My older daughter helped a little when a light breeze threatened to lift the corners of the top fabric. And I weighted one corner with a bottle of something I found lying around by the garage. If I’d had an adult helper, this would have gone quicker. There are a couple little bubbles on the back, but overall, this was fairly successful, except when kids nearly ran over it with their bikes while I was working!
This quilt is for daughter #2. She loves strawberries and requested a project built around them. I went with a bright green to highlight the strawberry stems and to contrast with the red and it looks very Christmas-y – which was not my intention. The brown tones it down a bit.
I’ll try to machine-quilt it in the coming week. Here are a few closeups to give you a sense of the blocks and fabrics. This pattern came from Simple Style: Easy Weekend Quilts by Sara Diepersloot. That version used a watermelon theme and had a fun picnic-y feel.