Last month I shared the back story on that ill fated quilt, the one that endured multiple fabric bleeds and seam unraveling. The good folks at Robert Kaufman came across my post and sent a very kind email apologizing for my less-than-stellar experience with Essex Linen. Like I said in that post, it wasn't necessarily the linen's fault, as I didn't prewash it and maybe didn't quilt enough. How nice of them to reach out!
Then, check out what they sent! Yep, that's a pile of Essex linen - lots of shades, particularly the yarn-dyed varieties. So, YAY! I'm so lucky. And also, what? As in, what will I do with that now? An ounce of reflection yielded the answer - test, Test, Test Quilt!
My friend at Completely Cauchy shared that when folks sew clothes with linen they use 1/2" seams and overcast, zigzag or otherwise finish the seam allowance to prevent unraveling. Aha! I want to be able to incorporate linen in my patchwork again, because I Love Linen; but, only if I can do it confidently. Keep in mind that in both my experiences with linen unraveling (happened with this quilt too, which was sashed with 100% linen), the problems didn't show until about the 4th wash.
So... let's meet that question head on! I'm going to make a quilt incorporating multiple cuts of Essex linen cotton blend. I'll sew all linen with 1/2" seams and zigzag the edges, like so. I've already prewashed my Essex. And, I'll finish the quilt with generous free motion quilting.
I've settled on a simple design - a huge log cabin inspired by this quilt. I've added some prints and some Kona solids, to keep things interesting. The quilt is going to be pretty low-key though, as I have it in mind to gift it to someone in particular.
But, ONLY after I wash and machine dry it 4 times and report back to you! Crossing fingers.