Sunday, October 14, 2012

Green Bay Packers - Quilt #9

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Daryl LOVES the Green Bay Packers.  He grew up in Wisconsin, moved away 15 years ago and still maintains his allegiance to the team.  During football season a glass Packers dish decorates the mantle, and every time the Packers play he wears the same Packers shirt and green/yellow camo pants.  When the Packers went to the Superbowl, our house was decked out in decorations and we served up cheesy food representative of Wisconsin.  Even one of the dogs got dressed up!!  We had an extra TV in the kitchen along with the one in living room so no one would miss a minute of the game. 

This year we agreed not to get each other gifts for our 12 year wedding anniversary.  So, I made him one instead.  I started looking at the internet for ideas on a football themed blanket.  I didn't find any one blanket that really charmed me, so I pulled things I liked from many blankets and created my own pattern.  I was very surprised that there aren't many templates out there for sports related items. There's one out of print book I could find. I scoured both book sections of Joann's hoping to find one, combed through  so for the applique I used a combination of Google images and I downloaded a free trial version of Adobe Illustrator. 

Normally I agonize over fabric choices when I'm looking to buy for a new project.  This time, I went in Joann and had everything picked out within 30 minutes.  I wasn't crazy about the fabric for the green border and 'field', so I went to Aunt Mary's Quilt Shop in Smokey Point (Arlington, WA) and found ones that were absolutely perfect.  Now I had everything I needed!

I started by washing and starching/pressing my fabrics.  This step takes a lot of time, especially when I have so many different fabrics, and a few were large pieces.  It's worth it to me though, I prefer working with washed/starched fabric.  Then I put the top together, which was pretty quick.  Now it was time for the applique.  I love doing applique - I think it adds so much character to a project.  I wanted to try using a satin stitch around the applique (I usually use an applique, or blanket, stitch), but my machine doesn't have a satin stitch and it wasn't doing the close zig zag really well.  On a small amount of applique, I could have used stabilizer and made it work... but with so much I went back to my normal stitch.  
Green Bay Packers Quilt
I did end up using a satin stitch and stabilizer for the threads on the middle football though.  The placement of the football was bugging me, I just didn't like it.  Dionne came over one afternoon while I was working on it and suggested adding the threads on that ball only.  She was soooo right!  Good call Dionne!

Since this was a surprise, I had to work in small pieces at a time whenever Daryl wasn't home.  The design wall was a big help in getting the different pieces put in the right spot.  I started with paper cutouts, pinned them in place to make sure I liked it, and it helped to make sure the size of each piece was right.  Good thing, the original letters I was going to use were too small.  Back to the drawing board....

I was planning to quilt around every piece of applique along with stitch in the ditch around the white field lines and inner border.  The ditch stitching went pretty well.  I then used a metallic gold embroidery thread to stitch just inside the stars.  I was getting so frustrated trying to fit this large of a blanket through my machine's 4" throat, I only ended up doing the larger stars and stopping.  It was that or the machine would have suffered.  Then I would end up suffering with no way to sew.  Got the binding attached and the blanket was ready for our anniversary weekend.
He nap tested the blanket yesterday and it passed.  Today he's keeping it close by as he spends this wonderful fall day watching football.

Happy Anniversary My Love!


  1. Thanks to all of you at Aunt Mary's - always helpful and friendly -- and I love your selection of Batiks! :)