I cut up all my binding strips last night so hope to get onto binding over the next couple of days. The end if nigh, and this time I mean it!
I’m using a blue polycotton that came in the stash that my Granma gave me a while back, it’s sort of cornflower blue and matches really nicely with the colours in the quilt. I think it’s also fitting that I use it to complete this quilt seeing as she sadly passed away before I could show her it, I really wanted her to see what I’ve struggled to achieve. As a sewing teacher and an accomplished home sewer I wanted her to see how I was inspired by her paper pieced hexagons to make my own and, using some fabrics from her, how I’ve created something that will hopefully last a long time…oh well, maybe she can still see it
As I have not idea how to do this I’ve been looking out for tutorials for binding a quilt and I thought, maybe you guys might be trying this too, or contemplating producing a quilt – do! So here are the two best tutorials I came across, with different ways of doing it…
Crazy Mom Quilts – Hand sewn finish (or you could try Sew Inspired)
Christine Mann – No hand sewing.
|Quilting the hand sewn paper pieced quilt
So very nearly there! Over the weekend, whilst trying to distract myself from Helga’s troubles I did quite a lot of quilting having finally got the even feed foot I needed for my machine. I definitely won’t claim that it’s the best quilting that I’ve ever seen but I’ve done it so it looks great to me Usually I’m my harshest critic but I’ve put so much work into this it’s hard to be objective! I do wish I had planned how the quilting pattern would look as I would have done it slightly differently but by the time I realised this I’d sewn about 50 lines and there was NO way I was unpicking them AGAIN! Room for improvement on the next one I guess…next one?!? What am I saying?!?
So a few pictures of how it’s coming along. There’s every chance that I’ll have it bound by next week. Going to get started on that tonight hopefully and then when Mr B asks if he can snuggle under it yet I can finally say yes….and move onto producing some of my other creations that I’ve had oh so many ideas for over the last few months!
|The front and back
I was hoping that the aquarium would be good as, other than the eating and shopping, it was the only thing in Chicago that I really wanted to do and I was thankfully completely blown away. WOW!
The Shedd Aquarium was absolutely amazing, full of fantastic features, amazing sea creatures and the biggest tropical reef tank I’ve ever seen! Plus the building it’s all housed in it just beautiful, with so much gorgeous architectural detail, I did spend much of the time with my mouth open…when I wasn’t trying on stupid hats that is!
Everything was great other than perhaps the funniest show ever, it was THE funniest thing I’ve ever seen – we went because they had whales and seals performing but…perhaps it’s something that only Americans get?!? To be fair I think it was aimed at the kids but I couldn’t stop laughing at Santa descending in a canoe from the ceiling or the elves in wetsuits or the singing girls who looked so embarrassed! Perversely it was probably the most memorable moment of the day though so clearly I got something out of it!
I leave you with some gorgeous picture of our visit…
We were heading back from the Art Institute of Chicago, which was pretty cool I have to say – lots of gorgeous impressionist paintings, and we were so exhausted from all the walking and kind of just fell into this place on N Michigan Avenue. I’m glad we did!
Sweetwater Tavern and Grille is nothing special really. It had about 50 huge TV screens showing every news and sports channel ever which is not really my thing and our waiter was a little brusque but it was warm, we had a giant booth all to ourselves and they served a lovely bloody Mary. I was sold!
We also thought we’d share some appetisers as we weren’t really hungry enough for lunch but fancied a bite. Why, oh why did we not remember how HUGE the portion sizes are?!? Minutes later the most massive portion of Nachos and a huge number of Buffalo Wings arrived. Though having to munch through so much food did give me the excuse to have another drink Plus Mr B loved the beer names and had great fun drinking his ‘drool’.
The Sweetwater was a great place for a little (big) nibble and some interesting beers – a nice little find I think
Mr B's favourite - Moose Drool
House nachos and buffalo wings
So when in Rome, do as the Romans? So in Chicago we HAD to have a deep pan pizza. I LOVE pizza but I love thin and crispy Italian style loaded with goats cheese or peppers or caramelised onions. Not loaded with huge amounts of mozzarella and pepperoni…So I came across the Uno Chicago Grill in my guidebook, opened on the corner of Wabash Avenue in 1943, there are now Uno’s all across America…would it be too chain like? Would I feel like a silly tourist???
I wasn’t as excited about this as Mr B but I reserved judgement and…it was delicious!! They’re essentially pizza pies – not at all like the deep pan you get over here. I loved it so much I completely forgot to take a picture of it – how unusual
The other great thing about this place is how local it felt, it wasn’t ‘pretend’ US, Uno really felt like somewhere people from Chicago go to eat. But maybe I was just cleverly lied to!
LOVED the Uno Chicago Grill pizza, loved the atmosphere and LOVED their bloody Mary! Oh how I remember the days when I was allowed to eat cheese and carbs
P.S. Seriously want some pizza now…MUST keep to diet