Yes I'm still here! I've been sewing away on many different projects, but some are top secret gifts and cannot be shared until after Christmas.
But this baby quilt for my newest great-nephew Caleb is now finished and delivered to his new home, so I can share the photos with you. His mother is planning the painting and decorating of his new nursery since moving this summer, and I can't wait to see the photos! For more details on the design and construction of this quilt top read this post.
I had intended to quilt this one myself, but finally caved and sent it out to a long arm quilter. The waves pattern we selected fits the sailboat theme and is a tad beyond what I could have accomplished with my own with my domestic machine. And he isn't going to be a baby for much longer, so I got some help :)
The quilter did a great job centering the pieced back. I like this side almost as much as the front!
In order to have the quilt finished quickly I enlisted the help of a different long arm quilter. Her business is run differently than my usual quilter Carol. I've been spoiled by Carol - she allows clients to come to her house and search through her wide range of thread choices so you can actually see the thread against your quilt top and make the best color choice. Her computerized quilting software also allows her to input the dimensions of your quilt top to create a line diagram of the component blocks and borders. She can then superimpose potential quilting patterns over the diagram so that you get a sense of the pattern's scale. She can then increase or decrease the pattern size to better suit the design of your particular quilt.
The quality of this quilting is very good and I'm pleased with it overall, but I do wish I had been able to see the pattern against the blocks and decrease the scale to better suit the size of the sailboats. Like I said - spoiled.
Lesson learned. I'm not sure if the lesson is to better communicate my needs and wants with a new long arm quilter before contracting with her, or to simply make the decision to have it quilted earlier in the process so I can utilize my usual favorite long arm quilter even though she has a longer waiting list? Probably a bit of both ;)
But thankfully Caleb is unconcerned with the size of the wave quilting!