Enger’s heavily involved with pet rescue efforts at the Etowah Valley Humane Society in Cartersville, Georgia. She also runs the homeless pet club at our school. The t-shirts in the quilt are some of her favorites from a variety of past dog rescue activities. It was a pleasure to work with colored t-shirts instead of the usual white or gray. Judging from the big smile on her face and the interest from her 3 canine children (Shadow, Macy and Tinkerbell), I’d say I have a satisfied customer!
The finished t-shirt block size is 14″. This meant that I had to add borders around three of the t-shirts to get them to the correct size. The t-shirts were cut 12-1/2″ square and then 2″ borders were added all the way around. The sewn blocks were then trimmed to 14-1/2″ before adding sashing and cornerstones. Enger specifically requested a “drapey” quilt and didn’t want a lot of quilting that would make her quilt “stiff.” I used Pellon cotton batting with a 10″ wide quilting space and ditch quilted the blocks, followed by some quilting around the logo designs or merely a big X through the block. I also changed the top thread color to match the t-shirt. The binding was attached and finished by machine.
The quilt police are probably pulling their hair out with the fact that I didn’t finish the binding by hand. This quilt is going to be washed and well-loved over time. In my opinion, machine stitching the binding is the way to go for durability. It also took less than an hour to glue baste the attached binding with Elmer’s washable glue, heat set and machine stitch it down. I stitched s-l-o-w-l-y with my open toe walking foot. I was extremely pleased with the finished result. It also helped that my backing and binding matched and were a busy all-over print. Machine binding also kept the quilt within her budget.
I liked working with the Pellon batting as I typically use Warm & Natural batting in my quilts. It does have more “hand” than the Warm & Natural – almost as much as the bamboo batting I love to use (when I can get it on sale).
As usual, I learned something this on this project: (1) the gluing method I learned in the applique class works quite well for temporarily holding the binding in place while you stitch it down by machine, and (2) if I use Pellon batting again with a wide border, I need to machine quilt at least 2 rows of stitching evenly spaced down the middle of the border if I do not do an all-over E2E design.