Quilt Without Borders


My first quilt top is almost done, I just need to add the polka dot border. It took me all day today to get the top finished. I had to piece the sashing and cornerstones. I am so proud of how it turned out.  It is very difficult to see from the picture but the blue “solid” blocks actually have outlines of butterflies on them in a batik-ish sort of look. Recently, I read about a great concept on Bonnie Hunter’s website called Leaders and Enders.  I sort of thought it was silly but it really does make sense and works. Here’s the run down of the concept. Most people will use a little scrap piece of fabric to prevent their machine from “eating” their good fabric of their project. I know that whenever I would start my machine or rethread, I always used a scrap piece of fabric to “test it” but I would always just cut the thread and keep going. Well, this made for a lot of wasted threads and time.  Bonnie’s concept is this, use your precut scraps (cut while you are are working on a project as part of the Scrap User’s System, also on Bonnie’s site) as a leader, fabric that you run through before your “real” project or an ender, which you run through at the end of whatever you wanted to piece, and which will become a leader. It’s pretty much the same as chain piecing something.  Bonnie explains it really well with pictures on her website.  So, if you follow her system, you can, in theory, work on two projects at a time! So, I started the leaders and enders just using the precut “bricks” which were 2.5″ by 4″ rectangles I had cut from my scraps. When I ran out of those, I realized something, I have a TON of strips just waiting to be pieced for my Chelsea’s Boutique quilt! Why not just run those through in between piecing my quilt top?  So, I decided to do it, and I DID! So, I have pieced my entire quilt top, PLUS finish strip piecing 36 light/dark strips for my Chelsea’s Boutique quilt.  Believe me, just running strip, after strip, after strip would NOT be very fun, but putting them in beween the pieces of this top worked perfectly!  Now I am about two steps closer to finishing that top as well!

In other news. I decided I wanted to start working on some embroidery projects I have but have never started. The reason I have never started them, I don’t have a light box. So I searched around town and I could either pay $50 or $80 depending on the box I decided to purchase! Way too much!  I remembered someone saying one time that you could easily make a light box/table if you had a glass table with a lamp underneath.  Well, I didn’t have a glass table, but I did have a sewing machine table with a top that drops down. Hmm, I wonder what would happen if I got something that is made from glass and put it on top? Well, I have this Pyrex dish (9″x13″) and if I set it on top… Now I just need a lamp. I grabbed the lamp off my cutting table which has an adjustable top.  Hmm, if I stack up some books and prop up the lamp, MAGIC! A light table that works perfectly and didn’t cost me anything! I am so proud of myself for being so frugal!  Here is a picture of my light table:


Click on the image for a closer view

Sometimes I am so smart I amaze myself. Well, I hope that this idea for a light box will inspire you to create something out of common household items. Hopefully I’ll have pictures to post soon of the embroidery I plan to do. Until next time,

Happy Stitches to You,




January 21, 2008. Tags: , , , , . Beginner's Quilt Class, Quilting, sewing.


  1. Kim replied:

    good start on the quilt – can’t wait to see it finished!

  2. fatiah replied:

    The quilt looks great. I can imagine how proud you feel as I still can recollect how I feel many years back about my first quilt.

  3. Jean-o replied:

    Good for you, that’s using your brain there kiddo! Nothing like coming up with a way to save $ ….. don’t forget to tell hubby! They need to know that we think of ways to save $ too! Hey, and your quilt top it really great! I like the colors and the blocks are great! Poke-a dots will look sooo good with the other fabrics you have. Way to go on the fabric selection! Pat yourself on the back….. pat, pat, pat! Your doing a great job! Jean

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