Sunday, March 17, 2013

Happy BirthYEAR, Edwina!!

I just HAD to share this email that I received from fellow quilter, Edwina!  She made my day!  This week, you might remember that I wrote about Joanne’s method for measuring and cutting borders…fast and easy!  It met with some scepticism and trepidation from some of my other readers…you can read my post  here!

Here’s a picture of Joanne’s technique…she lays the borders in the middle of the quilt and cuts the top and the bottom to that size…then sews it onto the sides (no measuring in three spot and no averaging out.)


And here’s Edwina’s letter in regard to this post….

Dear Paulette~

I absolutely LOVE it when I find that tricks I’ve been using for years are finally DISCOVERED…. especially since I didn’t realize that everyone doesn’t do the same thing.

Borders and bindings have always been my nemesis so I started using the measure down the middle—with the fabric—years ago. I even iron my two pieces of border together so they stay together. I’m getting too old to get down on the floor anymore, well… the getting down isn’t the problem… it’s the getting back up that’s the problem.

Anyway, I have one of those big boards on my ironing board so I put my quilt top on that, smoothing out carefully and pin the border down to the quilt middle every 12” or so. Then I can pull the whole quilt, with the border pinned down, off the board to get to the other end of a large quilt. I never have catawampus, uneven borders anymore!

For the problem binding, I do pretty much the same thing with the quilted quilt laid down on the ironing board—smooth out the quilt—lay the binding on top of the edge—and pin. Then pull the quilt down the board so I can get to the end of the side and finish pinning. Then drag the whole thing, over to the sewing machine and sew down with the walking foot. I do this for all four sides and shasham… no more too tight or too loose binding.

Also… I roll up my binding and “pin” with those huge, heavy-duty binder clips so I’m not dealing with all those yardages of loose binding that get twisted and turned. Just be sure you unroll from the side of the roll… not from the top so it gets twisted while being unwound.

Both these “tricks” have made my finishing up quilts such a pleasure instead of a chore.

Hugs… Edwina, Petaluma CA—widow, mom to 4, Grammie to 5, living on the same sheep ranch I came to as a bride 60 years ago. Busy with family, friends, bookkeeping business, P.E.O. scholarships, and QUILTS. Celebrating my 80th this next weekend.


Another little thing that I do that has taken the wobble out of my borders, that I forgot to mention, is to cut the border fabric lengthwise—even if I have to seam it once—as that gives it more stability. However, I cut my binding crosswise as I do want that to have a bit of a “give.” I pretty much have all my quilts machine quilted. I started with my gal about 20 years ago when she first started. We both laugh about that first quilt I had her do. It was a baby quilt for my first grandson and the stitches were both long and short. She has come a long ways and does an absolutely gorgeous job now.

Well… off to the barn to feed the sheep.

Have a good day and again… thank you for the birthday wishes. I always joke about celebrating my birthday for a whole month; this year, I’m thinking of making it for the whole year.

Now WHO am I to argue with an almost 80 year old quilter who has been using this technique SUCCESSFULLY for years…and I might add…is still going strong!!  SHASHAM…I like this lady!  This is one spunky quilter! 

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a million times…we quilters need to live to be 100 just to get everything done!  Edwina, I wish you a VERY happy 80th and predict that there are many, many more quilts to be made in your future!  YOU GO GIRL!  Happy BirthYEAR!!

Shasham…I like that word!

Have a Sunny Sunday (but not too hot:) and happy Quilting!~P


  1. Hi P. Coming home soon I hear. Beautiful sunny day up here today but it has been rainy. I would love some of that heat but nothing above 80 for me. Blogging doesn't appear to be for the faint hearted - I've noticed that quilters have no problem stating differing opinions on someones elses blog. I wonder why that is?

  2. Gosh, Edwina could have been my teacher cause I do everything that she does, except I use the cutting table to lay the quilt out to do the pinning of binding as it's much larger than the ironing board.
    Try to stay cool in that heat.

  3. Hi Paulette!
    I found this link where a lady in the USA is selling an antique Grandmother's Garden Quilt, needs repair, but cheap! cheap! cheap!
    I thought you might like it.
    Good luck, Leslie

  4. Well, by, George, who am I to argue with an 80 year old woman either--my next quilt, I am trying it!! And since I am my own longarmer, I will know if it makes wonky borders better!

  5. We each have our favorite methods of doing things. Whatever works for you, go for it! There are no quilt police in my world!