Finally... Finished!

They say better late than never, and, in this case, I couldn't agree more! I finally finished Baby M's Halloween quilt. Yes, I know... it's a week and half late, but he doesn't seem to mind, so I won't, either.One reason it took me longer to finish it than I'd expected is that I decided to hand quilt it. I actually tried to machine quilt it (twice!) but was so unhappy with the way it looked, I decided to try hand quilting it instead. It worked out well, too, because for a while there Baby M decided he wouldn't nap unless he was in his car seat. I can't tell you how nice it was to have a project that I could work on while we sat in the driveway.

I found hand quilting quite enjoyable, which surprised me. I've always loved the look of it, but it was always a bit intimidating to me. My stitches are not as even as I'd like, but for my first attempt, I'm very happy with it. Now I'd like to take a hand quilting class to learn how to do it properly (especially how to hold the quilt while you're working on it... I always ended up with some pain from holding it awkwardly).

When I started working on this quilt, I was less than thrilled with my fabric choices, and thus not too excited about it. After spending so much quality time with this little quilt, I have to say that it's really grown on me. In fact, I kind of love it now (and so does Baby M, who you can see running around all over the quilt in these two pictures!).
I tried to use my scraps for a pieced backing, inspired by AmandaJean. I like how it turned out, but I found it challenging lining everything up to get the pieced strips to be straight. Do you ever make pieced backings? How do you line them up so that they're straight? I'd love any tips!
Happy Friday!