December 1, 2015

Drunkard's Path QAL: The Binding

December . . . the final month in my Drunkard's Path QAL, and I'm thrilled to say I'm starting the month with a finish. WaHoo!!!   You can find all the previous QAL posts here.

November was the month of machine quilting and I will admit it wasn't easy. Free motion quilting is not something I particularly enjoy but the QAL provided me with the motivation needed to have a finish. That's a big one for me since I'm better known for multiple starts and fewer finishes. You can read my quilting post here where I look at possible quilting motifs to use and my process of exploring ideas. I ended up going with a poinsettia looking leaf design throughout including the borders. You can see a bit of it here. I was worried that the change in thread color would look bad on the back but it's not that noticeable when you see the back as a whole.

With the quilting complete, all that remained was the binding. I find binding a relatively easy process. Especially after struggling with the quilting. Most often I don't decide on my binding fabric until the quilt is complete and then I audition various fabrics. I especially love to use stripes for my binding and usually keep quite a few stripes on hand for that purpose.

For this quilt I pretty much assumed it would be a red binding. I pulled out both red and green stripes to try and instantly knew the green was better. Either would look wonderful but the green really allowed the red fabrics within the quilt to shine.

When I put the following image up on Instagram, Linda of @FlourishingPalms made the suggestion to use both colors in a flanged binding and recommended this great tutorial by Karen of @RedBirdQuiltCo. Social media can lead to learning so many great new things.

I loved the look of Karen's flange binding and, after reading through the directions, felt sure this would be my choice. The best of both colors. Just a hint of red. Then I pulled a red solid and tried it. It looks really nice but once again I found the red shouted it's presence. The green 'leaves' in the quilt recede behind the red 'petals' in the design and I wanted the binding to recede a little as well. The red petals need to be the focus of this quilt. I felt any red in the binding simply brought too much attention to the edge of the quilt. I really do like Karen's tutorial though and will definitely be trying it on another project sometime soon. It's a great look for the right quilt.

Drunkard's path quilt, Christmas quilt

So green it is. A lovely green on green small stripe from the Caterwauling line by RJR Fabrics. It's been in my stash for awhile, the selvage says 2011 so who knows how long I've had it. I love it when I find the perfect fabric in your stash?

Here's the finish . . .

Drunkard's path quilt, Christmas quilt

Drunkard's Path quilt, Christmas quilt

At what point in the process do you choose the binding fabric? Do you have a go-to binding choice? Solids? Stripes? Prints? If you've made a quilt during this QAL along I'd love to see it. Shoot me an email with a photo.

I hope to show more photos in a few days when I actually get the house decorated.
Right now it's time to get my Christmas decorations put up. I think I hear Christmas carols calling . . .