Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Skinning a Quilt/A Big Finish!

A confession: Yes, this is an example of my machine quilting. Gulp. 
(I can hear you laughing.)
Here's my explanation:
This was one of the very first quilts I put on my HQ16 over six years ago. I had no idea that you should stitch in the ditch to stabilize the blocks or do a practice stitch-out to test thread tension! Or maybe practice the designs. 

 I like to think that now I can do better. 
That's why I did this:

This is called Skinning A Quilt.
The tool I'm using here is an eyebrow trimmer, but other acceptable tools for skinning are a scalpel or seam ripper.
The point is to get between the backing and the batting and strip out all of the quilting stitches.
Hopefully without cutting into the backing fabric or (fingers crossed) the front piecing.
Needless to say, it's enormously time consuming.
I didn't keep track of the exact number of hours it took me to skin this quilt, but I was able to watch all twelve episodes of Mr. Selfridge on my DVR along with six episodes of American Horror Story that I had fallen behind on watching.
(By the way, I loved Mr. Selfridge and can't wait for Season Two!)
Here's a shot of the same quilt re-layered and quilted using a pantograph called Funky Fans. 
It's a Thimbleberrie's Row Quilt. I'm so relieved that I was able to get it skinned, re-layered, quilted and washed (to remove the thread fluff from skinning) in time to donate to the Camp Knutson Quilt Auction this year. It was one of my big goals and I'm pretty happy to have it finished. I hope someone likes it enough to bid on it. It is one huge quilt!
In the interest of time, I did the scrappy binding by machine. I think it added a nice detail. And maybe it distracts from the not-so-perfect (but better than it was originally) pantograph quilting! 


  1. Well skinning probably beats picking anyway ~ ugh! Nice job on the finish, tho - I'm sure it will raise lots of $$ at the auction.

    I really like the way you did that binding! Now I'm gonna have to figure that out ~

  2. Wow, I've never heard of skinning a quilt before. I'm filing that back in my head in case I ever get the notion to do so. I'm sure your quilt will make lots of money. I really like it!

  3. Congratulations on such a beautiful finish... what a wonderful donation/fundraiser!