Wednesday, March 14, 2012

first quilt finish of 2012

At long last, I have finished the quilt for my niece, Averie!  Originally meant to be a Christmas present last year, I had to put it off as I realized just how much work was going into a (almost) twin-sized quilt especially since she and her brother are young enough that I'd need to have both ready for an event like Christmas.  Her birthday is in March, so that was my new deadline.  Of course, I thought her birthday was March 15, and it turned out to be late last week, so I didn't make her birthday like I intended...but I will make the deadline that I thought it was, as it will be shipped today.

I've spent the last two weeks watching TV/movies and sewing down the binding, and I finally finished it on Monday night (while watching Black Swan, which is an incredibly creepy and crazy movie).  Yesterday when I got home from work I added the label and tossed the quilt into the wash to see how it would finish up.

The final dimensions stayed very close to the pieced dimensions, and the quilt is about 54" wide by 92" long, give or take a bit.  I was targeting 54" x 90", as that's what I had found for twin quilt dimensions when I searched for them back in the design phase, but apparently I found incorrect measurements as most twin quilts are at least 60" wide.  I'm a little sad about that, but there was nothing I could do at that point as I'd already completed the quilting and was about to put on the binding, so it is what it is.  It's definitely long enough, as Chris had to stand on a folding chair to hold the quilt up for a picture!

I did end up with one minor problem on this one, which I didn't really parse until it was too late.  While sewing down the binding, I came across about an 18"-24" stretch where there were apparently tension issues when the binding strip was machine sewn to the front of the quilt.  It didn't seem like a problem, so I went right ahead and hand-stitched the binding down...only to find when I rotated the quilt that you could see similar tension issues on the front.  If I had really thought about it in time, I could have re-stitched the machine part before the hand sewing was complete.  At this point the way to fix it would be to rip out the handstitching, resew the seam, and redo the handstitching, so I decided to wash the quilt and see what happened.

The problem is much less noticeable after washing, hurray!  The binding is very securely sewn in place, so as long as someone doesn't grip that edge of the binding and try to rip it up, I think it will be just fine.  The location of the weird area is down at the "bottom" of the quilt, so if it's kept on a bed it shouldn't be used as a grab point very often, and if the quilt is used as a lap or play quilt then it probably won't be gripped by just that spot all the time.  And worst case if it does come off, I know what to do to fix it.  :)

Yesterday marks six weeks post-surgery for Curzon, or 42 days.  He is continuing to be his own normal and awesome self, being loving, cute, playful, energetic, and a pain in the ass just like nothing happened.  I did manage to make him yelp a bit the other night while messing with his scar tissue, but he forgave me quickly with some belly scratches.  At flyball practice this week we moved up to full recalls over all four jumps (set to 7"), and also started the bounce drill for equipment respect and made it to 3 jumps set at 18" by the end of our first session.  Curzon REALLY wants to go hit the flyball box though, so I don't think we'll keep him away from it for very long - hopefully we'll start some wall work with him either this week or in three weeks.  Next weekend will be hard on him as we're going to a tournament that he's not going to race in - but he'll run in the May tournament, so it won't be long!

I think I will take him swimming at the therapy pool another time or two, and then we'll transition back to the regular "dock diving" sort of pool exercise so that I can take Ezri and Jadzia along with us.  I've really enjoyed swimming with him, however, it's very nice to spend time with just one of my dogs upon occasion - and being able to submerge in 75F water in the middle of winter isn't bad either!

In closing for today, this was posted up on Facebook and it really struck a chord with me - this is exactly what the rabid religious right is trying to say with all of their attacks on women's rights.  It truly disturbs me that a woman's right to contraception and abortion is being questioned in this time, and it disgusts me that Senate hearings about these very topics don't include any women, either giving testimony or making decisions.  Santorum is definitely living up to his redefined name (thank you Dan Savage) with his continued insistence that women are fit only to bear children.  Oh, he doesn't use those exact words, but his actions and beliefs that contraception is unnecessary for "good women" and that all of our country's problems are due to women not staying home with their children are more than enough to send the message.  The other candidates for the Republican nomination are spewing the same sort of vile, bitter hatred towards women that is just astonishing and depressing.

These men want nothing more than to remove women's rights to control their own bodies.  They want to spread a culture of fear under the guise of religion, they want to give more money and control to corporations (whom they consider "persons" unlike the very women that birthed them, married them, and were born to them), they want to deny legal protections to anyone not like them (i.e. white, straight, and "Christian"), and they want to take away support and rights from the very people they are trying to win the election from.  I hope that the American public wakes up soon, because if this loss of women's rights happens, our country will be set back decades and it may never recover.

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