Sunday, July 31, 2011

Trouble with Backing (Knoxville, TN)

Great Smokey Mountains - Elijah Oliver's Place

I received my extra wide backing in the mail a couple of weeks ago.  I was a little disappointed in how stiff it felt.   I could not see anyone wanting to cuddle under a quilt with this stiff material as its backing.  So I washed it …..and a second time….then three times.  It still felt stiff.

I turned to my friends on Quilted Paradise Message Board.  Many of the quilters said it was probably the sizing that was causing the stiffness and one suggested I wash the fabric with Arm and Hammer Super Washing Soda.  It was amazing the difference in the fabric after one washing.  I could actually feel the difference.  I washed it 2 more times and I am a lot happier with the fabric.

Now I get to iron all that material on my table top ironing board…oh joy….


Done!   It only took me two hours.

New fabric

Great Smokey Mountains

Smokey Mountains album
We spent an afternoon at the Great Smokey Mountains National Park.  It was beautiful, but not very relaxing.  We made the mistake of going on a Saturday afternoon and it was very…..very…very busy! We decided to do the one loop with the old homesteads.  The best part was the freedom to walk around and explore the nooks and crannies of the homesteads.  It gave me more of a feel of what it was like to live in the 1800’s.  It’s quiet, serene, and simple with a lot of hardship as well.  Yea, I like living in this century better.

I wanted to visit Gatlinburg’s 8 miles of Arts and Crafts.  You guessed right.  There’s a quilt shop there too and another one in Sevierville.  But that wasn't the only reason.  I wanted to see the traditional mountain artwork too.  I use to read the Foxfire series.  Have you heard of them?  If I remember correctly,  students would interview the local mountain people.  There was a variety of art, stories, how to's, etc.  I found them fascinating.  I should look the books 96up.....and I'm off the subject.... 

Anyway, we started getting into heavy traffic in Sevierville.  Crawled through Pigeon Forge, and came to a complete stop on Gatlinburg’s main street.  We stopped for a quick lunch and decided we better visit the national park first.  By the time we finished the Cades Cove loop, it was after 6 pm.  So, I never made it to the quilt shops, but I can leave you the links.  The shops look very nice.

The Cherry Pit  in Sevierville  This site has a list of the artists along with their own websites if they have one.

Oh, in case you are wondering why I did not go on a different day.  Between running errands and Dan installing a new kitchen faucet, we ran out of time.  I can definitely give up a trip to quilt shops for a very nice stainless steel kitchen faucet. 


  1. Thanks for the tip on washing stiff backing! I have some like that too. I have been to The Cherry Pit. They had beautiful fabric and lots of kits. There is another shop close by called Quilting by Iva. She had so much fabric!

  2. You are welcome, Vivian. I hope it helps. Oh no! I really wish I had been able to visit the quilt shops. For now, I will have to console myself with our next stop in Paducah, KY to see the quilt museum and shop at Hancocks of Paducah. Have you been there? Is there a quilt shop there that is a must see? Sandy

  3. That is a very interesting washing tip. I had to laugh over the ironing as it looked like a page out of my book. I really hate to iron anything bigger than two feet wide. The worst part is when it hangs to the floor and gets coated in dog hair. Nice pictures. Your fans await the Paducah report.

  4. Thanks Julie, Isn’t that the truth? I tried to accordion fold the material onto the table. It fell off and got cat hair on it. I was lucky none of the cats felt like helping me this time. The part that always gets me – I seem to always miss a section when I think I am done. This is so exciting! I have waited years to visit Paducah. We leave on Tuesday! WooHoo! Sandy

  5. Foxfire Series! I found them all, one by one on alibris and amazon - yes, they are great!

  6. Hi Susan,

    It is so nice to hear someone who knows what I am talking about!


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