Fabric Temptation

I realized that if I am going to enter my Snowflake quilt in the AQS show in Lancaster next year I will need to finish it by Nov 6 .   Yikes!
DSCN4525

Lots of quilting to go!

I really do want to make this one

fall idea

But I will finish the snowflake first.

Temptation is strong to work on the new one

I have some fabrics ready

DSCN4556

The picture doesn’t do them justice, they are actually brighter, but you can get the idea.

perhaps just a few blocks?

I’ll let you know next time

Happy Quilting

Tim

 

edge work

DSCN4534

Last time I posted about the snowflake quilt

DSCN4524

and said that I pinned towels to the edges to make quilting the edges easier in the hoop.

DSCN4530

Today I put it in the hoop so here is how it looks

DSCN4533

The light was perfect so I took a few more pictures …when the light is right it really shows the texture. (click pictures to enlarge)

Teddy was ready to pose today so here is his photo shoot

He is such a good model….but I am afraid he really needs a bath :(   but don’t tell him….he hates getting wet!

Happy Quilting

Tim

autumn 2

We had a hard frost so many plants in my garden have bitten the dust :(   but there are still lots of fall colors around.    I have been thinking of a new quilt idea in fall colors so I drew up a plan.

fall idea

I am not sure when I will actually make it….I decided to work on the snowflake quilt and get it finished….

DSCN4363

the #11 between needle I use for hand quilting this one sure seems small compared to the size 5 embroidery needle I used on the last one

 

I also want to finish the batik quilt top

DSCN4324

and several others before I start a new one….but thinking about new things keeps me moving along.

Happy Quilting

Tim

More vintage tops

DSCN4410

I have a few more vintage top to share today.  I plan to get to these soon, but as you know I change plans frequently ….

This lone star is really great!   I love 2 color quilts.

DSCN4396

As is often the case with these it has a few issues.

DSCN4399

the center is rather mountainous.

DSCN4397

and the setting triangles are on the bias and very puckered.

DSCN4398

I think the easiest solution will be to take it apart into the 8 main pieces/star points and trim them to the correct size and replace the bias cut triangles.  When I get to work on it I will post all about how I do the fix.

Next is a spool top.

DSCN4400

A very simple design but I really like it.   It is a bit less than well made

DSCN4402

not really flat and not very precise in the piecing

DSCN4401

and some of those vertical stripes would be much better if they were horizontal…more like thread on a spool.

but I really like it as it is.

I think I will just press this one well and quilt it as it is.

Teddy likes it the way it is

DSCN4410

Remember this quilt?

dscn3738

I made it with a line of fabric from P&B Textiles called Interplay

DSCN3742

P&B Textiles now has my pattern (as well as many others) available as a free download on their website here http://www.pbtex.com/free-patterns/

It is an easy one to make…and could easily be made larger with the addition of borders.

If you are going to be at the Houston Quilt Market visit P&B at booths 1356 & 1361

 

I have a Floral Design Class to teach Saturday Morning …pictures of that soon

 

Happy Quilting

Tim

 

Foundation piecing

DSCN4275

I am working on the Batik project and I thought it might be a good time to talk about foundation piecing.

Paper foundation piecing is very popular these days but it is nothing new.    This vintage top used Montgomery Ward catalog pages as the paper foundation

 

2012_0406wards-paper0001 2012_0406wards-paper0010

Older quilts often used Muslin as the foundation…this partially finished quilt used muslin foundation.

2012_0125string-star-foundati0001

Here is the back of one of the pieces.

2012_0125string-star-foundati0008

When using fabric as the foundation it is left on….paper is removed

These vintage string star blocks were paper foundation pieced but the paper was removed after they were made.

2012_01139-24-120006

I am using paper and I remove the paper when the block is finished.   Some people will leave the paper on until the entire top is done.

Today I am working on the borders

here is the plan that I designed on the computer

Batik plan

you can see that the border has a lot of long narrow points.   the advantage of foundation piecing is that the foundation prevents the fabric from stretching and becoming distorted as it is sewn.   This makes for much greater accuracy.  In my vintage and antique quilts I really don’t worry too much about accuracy, but for this quilt I thought I would try to be as accurate as I can.

I start by printing the pattern.   Computers make quilting so much easier!   In the past the patterns would need to be traced onto the paper.

I hate to waste fabric and one of the drawbacks of foundation paper piecing is that there is a lot of waste from all the bits that are trimmed of.    Since all the pieces in the border blocks are the same size I was able to pr-cut the pieces.  I had to do some figuring to get the size right and it worked out that if I cut 2.5 inch strips and then cut them in half on the diagonal I have the pieces the right size with very little waste.

DSCN4265

DSCN4266

DSCN4267

next I arrange the pieces in the order I plan to sew them

DSCN4268

I pin the pieces to the paper before I sew.   I line up the piece 1/4 inch beyond the line (1/4 inch seam allowance) and pin in place

DSCN4269

The fabric goes on the back of the paper so that it fits into A1  The next piece is pinned on so that after it is sewn on and pressed it will cover the next area (A2)

DSCN4270

sew on the line then press open….this is how it looks on the finished side

DSCN4271

Now I trim the piece in A2 so that there is 1/4 inch seam allowance on the long side by folding the paper up to the line and trimming the overhang…and then pin the next piece in place

DSCN4272

DSCN4273

sew that one down and press it open

DSCN4248

and then fold the paper back to the line

DSCN4249

and trim to 1/4 inch

DSCN4250

fold the paper back to flat and add the next piece

DSCN4252

sew and press

DSCN4253

fold back and trim

DSCN4254

keep adding new pieces

DSCN4255

until they are all added

DSCN4256

Looks like a bit of a mess until it is trimmed.    It is important in the block that I did not sew beyond the line at the top (where the large purple piece will be added)

DSCN4257

I fold back the paper at that line

DSCN4258

and trim that overhanging fabric to 1/4 inch and then fold back the paper

DSCN4259

Now I can add that big piece…make sure it fits

DSCN4260

pin in place

DSCN4261

sew and press open

DSCN4262

now flip it over

DSCN4263

trim all the edges

DSCN4264

and it is done.  here are a few of them finished in place

DSCN4275

I partially made one block before I realized I was doing it wrong.  I had reversed the order of the pieces….see how it doesn’t fit with the others

DSCN4274

the points go the wrong direction.   It can be easy to get it wrong because the sewing is all done from the back of the paper.

I should also mention that I turn the stitch length to almost as short as I can for this.   The smaller stitch length gives the paper more holes  so it is easier to rip the paper off…it breaks easily along the stitch lines with all those little holes.

 

 

Teddy the Helper

DSCN4214

Today I have been working on the Batik Project.    The Fabrics are from Lelia and Co. Fabric and Design and the blocks are paper foundation pieced.   I am getting better at paper foundation piecing the more blocks I do.

I have 21 done now of the 100 needed to finish

Here is the plan which I did on the computer

Batik plan
I decided to see how the blocks look laid out and Teddy was there to help me arrange them.

DSCN4214

and he did a pretty good job

DSCN4217 DSCN4215

he needed some help getting that last one flat

DSCN4219DSCN4223

I hardly ever mention my other job as flora design instructor but my nephew got married yesterday and I did the flowers for the wedding.

The ceremony was at the Grosse Pointe Academy Chapel …here is a picture of the chapel (It is a picture from their website not the same wedding)

full-chapel-interior-2014

I am really bad about getting pictures of weddings , usually I am in such a frenzy trying to get it all done on time that I just forget to stop and take some pictures.    I did take a few in the work room before I delivered them.

Brides bouquet

DSCN4197

Bridesmaid

DSCN4198

Chapel flowers

DSCN4200

centerpiece

DSCN4207

My Sister made the cupcake wedding cake

DSCN4205

Teddy says it is time to get back to work now

Happy Quilting

Tim

New top

DSCN4033

I started making a quilt top about a year ago.    I was planning to do it with spiderweb blocks.

DSCN4025

I made a few and it just didn’t feel right so in December (while cleaning up to decorate) I packed it away.   I started again on Sunday with a fresh perspective.   Over the course of the year I have expanded my view of quilts.   I still love the very traditional, but I also appreciate the less formal improvisational style.  When an idea strikes I need to go with it right away so that is what I did.

Using the same fabrics I did the piecing like I did in the last quilt.

DSCN3879

DSCN4024

I incorporated the blocks I had already finished into the top

DSCN4033

Now i like it.   I might add a border

DSCN4037

without a border it is 58 x 68 inches

DSCN4032

Teddy looks good in(on) these colors

DSCN4042 DSCN4040

The pictures without Teddy are a truer color ….I took the Teddy pictures without a flash so he eyes wouldn’t get spots.

I was very excited to get a new book today (I have been waiting for months for it to come out) Unconventional & Unexpected  American Quilts Below the Radar 1950-2000 by Roderick Kiracofe

DSCN4038

I have one of his other books “The American Quilt:  A History of Cloth and Comfort 1750-1950″  and this book completes the story.    People often view quilting as nonexistent between the late 40’s and the quilt revival of the 70’s.  This book shows that this was not the case.  The nearly 150 quilts in this book are surprisingly improvisational, much like Jazz is to music .   The notes are the same but they are played differently.    It is a beautiful book and I highly recommend it.

Now that I have satisfied my improvisational desires for a few days I am back to work on some traditional hand quilting.

Happy Quilting

Tim