It’s a Finish! 9-Patch Pizzazz

he retirement party was yesterday and the quilt has been gifted, so now I can post the pictures.

No, as I’ve said before, quilting is not like riding a bike. I made just about every rookie mistake I could have on this puppy but I persevered and, eventually, things started flowing again. Mostly, I got ‘er done!

This is the 9-Patch Pizzazz technique by Judy Sisneros. It’s a great way to use large scale fabrics, and it’s also a design that leaves a lot of room for your own sense of color and artistic layouts. This is the second one of these I made, and I may make more in the future. The part that takes the longest is deciding on your layout.


Before I sat down to quilt it, I pulled out a muslin practice quilt sandwich and ran myself through a FMQ design that I used to do, just to see if it was going to give me grief. Surprisingly, this was the part of quilting that was like riding a bike! I immediately got back into the rhythm and movement. I have to say my practice sandwich wasn’t half bad!

That made me feel a lot more confident about quilting the whole quilt. 

I had some difficulties with batting. I didn’t have any big enough in batting bin (and not enough scraps of any one kind to be able to stitch pieces together for use), so I made a quick run to Joanns. This is where my being-out-of-the-game came into play—I couldn’t for the life of me remember which brand of cotton batting I used to like. I prefer cotton to poly as I like the drape and the “antique” look you get when you wash it. Batting was on sale so I chose Mountain Mist—and bought three bags of it so be prepared for another couple of quilts I want to finish. When I got home and started spray basting it to the backing, it gave me no end of grief. It was super thin—almost see-through in some places—and as I tried to smooth the wrinkles out of it, it just keep stretching, puckering, and getting thinner. I was afraid I was going to pull right through it.  

After about a half hour of monkeying with it, I finally gave up, ripped it totally off the back, and decided I’d have to go back to Joanns again. This time I picked up a poly batt, then one Warm and Natural cotton batt to work with later. Looking at it more closely, I’m pretty sure that’s the one I used to use—it’s much sturdier than the Mountain Mist but still really drapable.  

Anyway, the poly batt went down beautifully and I had the entire quilt basted in about 15 minutes this time. Go figure. 

Once I had it under the needle, the quilting went really well. I’ll talk more about that on my next podcast episode. Meanwhile, here’s what you’re really waiting for... 

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