Minding the Gap

So when I first read Sunday Morning Quilts, I became very interested in the Original Ticker Tape quilt. But you know I can't do anything randomly. I made a plan to save scraps from all my projects in 2014 and use this quilt as a kind of scrapbook for the year. 

All year long, I put my small scraps in a zip bag in my larger scrap basket. And since this was such a busy year for me sewing-wise, I had a TON of scraps. A few weekends ago I sat down with all my little bits and pinked the edges. This part wasn't in the original instructions, but you also know me and instructions.

My original plan was to load up to pieces of white on white print on the longarm and then use Web Bond to hold the pieces in place as I stitched around them. The more I looked at that, the more I was scared of gumming up the machine, and the more bored I felt about plain white fabric.

Then I was at the Cotton Patch in Tulsa while John was in a meeting and discovered this fabric:

It would make perfect confetti for the back of my quilt!

I bought all they had because, by this point, I was going to make ten of these!

Long story short, I loaded up the confetti fabric as the backing with a white on white print for the front. I used a batting scrap that was leftover from a previous backing piece and went to town. I stitched around each square about 1/8-1/4" in from the edge. Many of them also got decorative stitching inside the squares. For some it was to hold them down because of their larger size, for others it was to try out a new stitch or an old one in a different scale, but for a lot of them it was all about getting to the other side to start the next square.

I really had fun with the placement. Sometimes pieces are near each other because they were in the same project. Sometimes I was just trying out a new combo.

I got all the pieces that would fit within my batting piece and unloaded from the machine. This was when I noticed the gap on the side. My pieces and stitching had drifted to the interior leaving a gap.

I decided this was an experiment and put the binding on anyway. I used the flat fell foot method, but really wasn't careful enough on the part with the gap so there are some ugly spots.

I washed the quilt and love the texture, but that gap was still bugging me. Last night I used my regular machine to stitch down some more scraps to fill the gap. It was a very different experience to do that on a regular machine versus the longarm. It was also interesting to try to get the tension right on the now-washed 80/20 batting. Hopefully, when I wash it again the big gap will still be gone, and I placed the new pieces well enough that they don't look scabbed in.