I was in the mood to start and finish a project today and I’ve been meaning to make a bigger mug rug for my night stand so that’s exactly what I did.
I pulled a few FQs (fat quarters) from my stash, some had already been used a little, and cut 5″ squares. I made two rows of three and then sewed the rows together – that was just the perfect size. I pulled another (not so favorite) FQ from the stash and used a 10×14 piece for the backing. I decided I was going to use some left over pieces of batting for this project so I pulled three strips and zigzag stitched them together. I wasn’t really sure how that would work out but they pieced together pretty easily and didn’t cause me any problems during quilting…yay!
I pulled another FQ and cut strips for the binding. I tried a new technique when sewing the binding to the mug rug: instead of sewing the beginning and ending pieces together on the diagonal, I created a diagonal crease at the beginning and then tucked the ending piece into it.
Lastly, I tried my hand at FMQ in the center…with my 50 year old machine! Clearly it’s not made for FMQ!! Or maybe I’m the one who’s not made for FMQ! LOL
I’ve been plugging away a little each day on the Crossword Puzzle quilt and I’ve got the top all done – woohoo! Now comes the ‘scary part’ (for me anyway) I need to lay out the backing fabric, line up the batting and then line up the top – with no wrinkles! Here’s where my OCD will either be a help or a hindrance :-s
First I needed to make sure that I had enough backing fabric to cover with several inches of allowance on all sides and that’s where I hit my first snag 😦 I clearly didn’t measure correctly when I cut the backing fabric and I only had enough allowance on the sides and not the top and bottom – ugh! Ok, so this is my first quilt I guess those kind of mistakes are allowed 😉 Luckily I had a 4″ strip left over when I was cutting for the additional border so I added it to the top (you can see how it’s short on the upper right corner) – clearly not perfect but I guess I’m going to go with it anyway.
I need to press both the top and backing, mark the center of each and then take a shot at layering them with the batting (fingers crossed!). I’ll try to snap some shots of that process – I’m sure it will be hilarious!!
I had the itch to sew something else and I had read/heard that I should test quilting with the fabrics before I actually start on my main project so I thought I’d try making a mug rug. I had a left over 5″ charm in white and a piece of backing fabric 2″x40 so I used the ‘quilt as you go’ method. My machine had no problems going through the fabric + batting so that was a relief and since I plan to quilt using straight lines I think I’m good. The binding is another story! I watched several YouTube videos before starting but I still had horrible results…I attached the binding to the back and then tried to machine stitch it to the front – not pretty! Me thinks I may attach the binding to the front of my Crossword Quilt and hand stitch it on the back…we’ll see.
And last but not least, I found it hard to keep track of all the pins I was using to try to keep my seams straight so I used a few scraps of backing fabric to make myself a pin cushion. I didn’t bother with making the closure look professional, after all it’s just going to sit in my sewing room. I had some long grain rice I used that as my filling…it works great!