Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Let's chat about corners

Let's chat or curse, whichever, about corners.  (I personally, will curse.)
I hate'em.
They are the bane of my quilting existence.

I can do many things in quilting, and I feel confident about my projects, except for the corners.  I am still after nearly 20 years of working with fabric, trying to get a good decent corner consistently.

I have read all the tips, I try all the different ways, I listen to suggestions.
My corners look like hell, in my opinion.

My last three or four projects, I started to feel good about the corners.  Breathing a little easier when the turn came up.

I think they were starting to flow with the binding application and they looked pretty decent.

They even had the little miter fold.  I was not feeling anxious at all about placing the corners or even showing off the edges.

I have picked, re-worked, gone slow and cautious, a lot of times to no avail.  I don't say anything to a quilt receiver, they probably wouldn't notice, but I do.  And I look at other quilters corners, and I think 'why in the hell can't I get this down?'

So, it was going better, and for the Modern She Made Swap I wanted to make my partner place mats.
Four place mats with four corners each.  That is 16 corners!
Guess what?  I'm a bookkeeper, and I didn't do the math.  Until I was already down the rabbit hole making four place mats, and it was way too late to start anything else that only had four corners or maybe was round and didn't have corners at all!
It did not go well with the corners. 
And giving this to another quilter made me want to cry.  The corners just fought me.

I made little tiny 1" finished squares.  I free motion quilted the borders.  The colors look darling.  I don't think I ruined it with the corners, but they could look better.
 I would say 4 of the corners turned out well, 4 were passable and the other 8 look like amateur hour.

I could not bare to even take a photo of the corners close up.

I also made her a scarf, a scarf that does not require binding.
Which made me feel better.  I added fringe to the end of the scarf for fun, I was feeling so good about not making corners.

And then when I was addressing the package, I saw my partner lives in FL.  Perhaps something that might have made me think twice about making her a scarf.
Hmmm.  Well, it's a thin scarf, hopefully she will like it to add color to an outfit.

This is a good swap, I have been in it before, I received a great bag I'll show in another post.  So, it isn't the swap it is the swapper having a bad sewing week.

And so, if you have advice you would like to offer on corners, throw it at me.  I will read it all, I will try it all, and I will drink after to take away the sting.


Colleen said...

That's too bad about your corners, Mary. My "fail" is the quilting - most of the time. Have you ever watched a Fons and Porter show where they have demonstrated how to do the binding corners? I've seen it on their shows 2 or 3 times, and they do it very well. For me, I always hand stitch the binding, because I find when I machine stitch, it is wobbly and doesn't look as nice as I want. But hand stitching helps the corners too - you have time to get them folded just right, then you can hold them tight while you take the stitches.

heart of charnwood said...

I can empathise with that Mary, i am hit and miss with corners, sometimes I have to wrestle them into submission, and they're still pretty bleurgh, other times they look beautiful, and taking more care doesn't seem to make a difference, just seems to be luck! Don't ask me about making coasters, they always look yuck, the corners especially, I 3 mismatching ones, because every time I make the first it looks so rubbish, I try a different look! : )

Issabella The Cat said...

Mary I have to say I feel your mitering pain! You are not alone! I utterly detest binding specifically because of corners. It turns out I bind "In a funny way" if you believe the ladies in my LQS, so I'm going to blame my "funny" binding and just laugh at the corners I produce!
BTW I love the scarf the colours are really pretty :)

Carolyn S. said...

Love the placemats and the scarf. Great colors! And really cute quilting on the borders.
I hear you on the corners. Mine are kind of hit or miss, but where they really fall down is the back of the quilt, which I don't understand, because I'm doing that by hand!
And I can't sew a binding on completely by machine to save my life. I see peoples' blogs where they show how it's done, and theirs look so crisp and finished, and mine looks like I don't even know what, but it's not good.