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A few weeks ago I collected an unfinished quilt top that someone had put on a freecycle site.

I was really looking forward to seeing what it was like and maybe finishing it.  It was pouring with rain when I collected it and the giver had left it outside, but wrapped up and under a large plastic box to collect.  I only had chance to ensure it was a quilt before loading it in the car and coming back home so that I could see what it was actually like.

It took me ages to get into the bag – it was wrapped in 3 and stuffed so tightly in it took a big pull to get it out.  I found all the patches had been done in a drunkards path block – mainly in what I believe is called ‘robbing peter to pay paul’.  This is not one of my favourite blocks so I was not off to a good start.

I laid it all out on the kitchen floor

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About half the blocks had been sewn together in a very odd way, and a lot of the others were in strips, with some odd blocks and also just some pieces cut out.  My first thought was to may be just reset the blocks as there didn’t seem to be any obvious pattern to the top but I soon changed my mind.  There were so many things wrong with it, in the end I decided to take it all apart and start again!

Here’s all the things that made me decide this.

–  No obvious layout pattern

–  Many seams were not matched in each block

–  Although templates had been used and seam lines marked no attempt seem to have been made to sew on the lines.

–  The fabrics used varied a lot in weight.  It included polycotton dress material and sheeting, polyester dress material, polyester knitted fabric, polyester gaberdine, cotton wyncette, polyester gingham, cotton upholstery fabric, voiles, dress weight cottons, and quilting weight cotton.

–  There were at least 3 different types of threads in 4 colours (bright yellow, green, navy and brown) used to sew it together and the stitch length varied from about 1.5 millimeters to at least 4 millimeters.

It took me 2 weeks to take it all apart and sort out what fabric I wanted to keep and what need to be put back on the freecycle site.  What I didn’t want has now gone to some one for craft projects, and the rest is sitting in a box waiting for me to put back together and organise into a coherent plan for a quilt top.

Watch this space for progress.

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