Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Homemade Basting Spray, and a Smidgen of Ukulele

Now that the Christmas parties have passed, and homemade Christmas presents are finished, I'm focusing on two projects I'd like to complete by the end of the year.

The one getting first attention is the Wayward Transparency quilt. Instructions for the quilt along are complete, so it's a matter of me getting mine finished and linking up to Yvonne's blog (QuiltingJetGirl) beginning January 12. I've been working away, doing everything times five, because, as you know, I'm making what would otherwise be one quilt (see Yvonne's finished versions here) into five small quilts. They'll hang in my living room above the sliding glass doors.

I thought these small quilts would be a great opportunity to try out a recipe and tutorial I found for homemade basting spray: Instructions and tutorial found here on the StringandStory blog.

It's nice to use spray baste because it's easier to quilt when there's nothing (safety pins) to impede quilting motions. I'm also reluctant to use commercial basting spray because it's sticky and spraying an aerosol indoors isn't healthy. When I have used commercial spray baste, I usually go outdoors.

With this homemade version using water, salt, flour, and rubbing alcohol, I felt comfortable spraying in my sewing area. After making the spray, I ended up with enough to fill an empty Best Pressed spray bottle, with a little left over that I poured into an empty juice jug.

I taped the 30" X 30" quilt back to my sewing room table, and covered it with Quilter's Dream Cotton batting. I folded back the batting, and sprayed both the batting and the backing.

I smoothed the batting back onto the backing, and then folded back the opposite half of batting to spray it and the opposite side of backing. You can see that even though I used the "spray" setting on the bottle, it came out more like a stream. My only concern through the whole process was making sure that overspray didn't get on the laminate floor.

After the backing and batting were together, I positioned the quilt top on the batting and repeated, folding back the quilt top, and spraying both the batting and the back of the quilt top.

 You can see that after smoothing and patting the layers together it all seems pretty wet.

It was, but all visible signs of wetness disappeared when it dried. I allowed it to air dry with the ceiling fan twirling. After an hour or so, I untaped it and moved the whole quilt sandwich to another room where I placed it under a fan with the back side up. I repeated all these steps to make five quilt sandwiches.

By the next day when I was ready to start quilting, the quilts appeared only a little rough looking, like they were covered with tiny bubbles. A hot steam iron easily smoothed the front and back.

When I did the actual quilting, the quilts stayed together really well! I was impressed that even the corners, which I had made sure to spray well, stayed in place!


I've finished walking foot quilting all five quilts, and added facing (not binding) to all five quilts. I followed Robbie Joy Eklow's quilt facing tutorial on WeAllSew. No, I didn't have enough of one backing fabric, or one facing fabric to make all the backs identical. I'm hand-sewing down facings. 

The only negative of the homemade spray, in my opinion, is that the quilt must be washed afterward. Apparently if the quilt isn't washed, the spray may attract bugs or mold. But, I don't anticipate any problems, and will no doubt use this spray again. I think it does the job, for walking foot quilting anyway. There's enough left that I expect to baste another large quilt in the next few days, and that one will be free motion quilted.

Dan has watched my progress on these five quilts and has only commented that "when you see all of them hanging on the wall above the sliding glass doors you're either going to love it, or hate it." No doubt he's right... For all this work, I sure hope I love it!

"Ukulele on the Square" at Lake Sumter Landing was this morning. It was as much fun, and as well-attended as we hoped! A successful first-time event. This was my view from the back of the gazebo where the performers sat. I sang two songs, as well as played my uke.

Dan took this picture of me when he stopped by briefly between his abs workout and teaching a Tai Chi class.

I wish I'd videoed a Christmas song, but I was having so much fun myself, that I didn't want to stop playing and singing! So here's a bit of a non-Christmasy tune: "All My Loving." Linda

7 comments:

  1. I'll be interested in hearing how you like the spray for fmq. I haven't tried spray basting yet but would prefer one that is homemade.

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  2. Good to hear about the basting spray. I'm anxious to see your 5 quilts hanging!! FUN at your UKE event! ;-)

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  3. Thanks for sharing the basting spray experience. Definitely something I want to try. Looks like a uke amount of fun!!!!

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  4. Homemade basting spray! What a concept! I’ll definitely have to give it a try, and will definitely pass along the information. Loved your video! Such fun!

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  5. You guys sound so busy: ukulele event, tai chi and abs workouts! Glad to get the news about the basting spray, but I'm still resistant to using them, preferring the pins. I saw your Transparency Quilts on IG--they look terrific!

    I loved the phrase "doing everything times five" and at first I thought it meant you were working up a storm, but then caught on it meant you were making five quilts. I think we ought to keep that phrase in the vernacular, especially when we are on deadline!

    Merry Christmas to a fabulous woman, who always is learning, always has something to share--
    Elizabeth

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  6. I finally got here to check out the ukulele playing - and found fun singing, as well! Looks like such a fun event and an appreciative crowd. Hooray!!

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  7. I’m so glad you liked the spray baste!! Happy Quilting! πŸ’ƒπŸ½

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