Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Quilt Fail

I couldn't resist trying to squeeze in one last holiday project...  I had plenty of scraps left from my various Kate Spain Christmas collections to make this Christmas Baubles mini quilt by Jen Daly Quilts for the Moda Bake Shop.  I'm not sure I agree with the Easy classification on this pattern.  It's not so much that there are any difficult techniques and Jen's instructions are clearly written and illustrated but sewing 88 1 1/8" squares to the corners to make 22 snowball blocks is not for the faint of heart.

Alidiza: Christmas Baubles Flimsy
Also, 1 1/8" inch sashing?  That's just annoying!  I would definitely suggest that you not cut the 1 1/2" strips that go across the top of each ornament grouping until after you've assembled them.  My units all ran a 1/4" longer than the designated length.  I could have eased them in to the smaller length but it seemed better to cut the sashing to fit since they were consistently off.

Alidiza: Christmas Baubles Quilting
If I did it again I would increase the size of the sashing between the ornaments to 1 1/4" and I would add a bit more white space around the tree.  I left off the pieced border and got right to quilting this.  I copied Jen and did straight lines to emphasize the tree shape.  On the bottom I did free form lines to look like snow drifts and I stole the idea to quilt snowflakes along the top from the awesome BettyCrockerAss.

Everything was going fine until I tossed it in my bag to tack the binding during the day's inevitable wait times.  Also in my bag was my almost empty travel mug of tea.  At some point the bag got tipped enough that my tea dregs leaked out onto my quilt.  There were some choice words used when I got home and saw what had happened.  I immediately turned to social media for help and got tons of sympathy and suggestions for removing tea stains.  I tried:

  • Soaking in Oxyclean
  • Dawn dishwashing liquid
  • Vinegar
  • Wisk
  • Blotting it with Color Catchers
  • Oxy MaxForce
  • Resolve
  • Zout
  • Lemon Juice and Salt
  • Spot Stop
  • Hydrogen Peroxide & Baking Soda
Alidiza: Christmas Baubles Tea Stained
I'd say the lemon juice and salt seemed to be the most effective but it's hard to say for sure given everything I tried.  In the end while I was able to fade the stains they are too obvious for me to want to use this.  I'm also a bit concerned about the integrity of the fabric after all the chemical treatments.  I will say that these Moda dark reds (which I didn't prewash) didn't seem to bleed a bit.  So have I learned the lesson quilts and tea don't mix?  Probably not but maybe Santa will bring me a travel mug with a top that closes:-)

With Christmas rapidly approaching it's a good thing the rest of my holiday making has gone smoothly though I will admit to some last minute applique on our flight down last night:-)  Have you finished all your holiday projects?  


  1. So, so sad! After all that fussy work too. So disappointing!

  2. What if instead of trying to get rid of the stains, use the tea to stain the whole front so it gives it the antique look? Just a thought.