Thursday, June 11, 2009

Almost Done

The second quilt for my Mum is almost done!!!! Then I need to start and finish a quilt for a customer before next weekend. Whew! I think I can get it done. I think I can, I think I can, I think I can....actually, come to think of it. I promised the customer that it will be done. So, I had better get my act together and GET IT DONE!

I'll post pictures of all quilts as soon I find some people to hold the quilts up for me for picture taking.

Monday, June 8, 2009

The quilt is done!

I have completed the first and have started the 2nd of Mum's Quilts. I have also taken in 3 more quilts to be have my work cut out for me before the end of June.

I think I may have a touch of ADD.....i usually plug in my mp3 player and listen to music. I have it set to play everything at random. I am finding that I can only quilt for 15-20 minutes at a time with this setting. Recently my husband picked up a library book on CD. I copied it to the player and have enjoyed reading while I quilt. Best of both worlds. Now, I can quilt for much longer periods of time as I quilt by the chapter. So, I am squeezing in a bit more quilting so that I can get to the end of the chapter.

no new pictures today...I'll try to get some of the new quilt in progress and then completed pictures as I get done.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Custom Quilting

So, I said earlier that I would track my process of quilting my Mum's Quilt. It is so hit and miss that I sometimes don't touch my machine for over a week. But here is what I have done to date....

I "stitched in the ditch" all the sashing and border seams. The quilt blocks are "on point" and I wanted to keep things from stretching. I was also doing some other quilts at the time adn needed to stitch in the ditch for them as well. I don't use a walking foot. I tell my students to save their money for fabric and thread! I use a couple of straight pins to secure the seams. Never had a wrinkle or pucker this way. I used an 80wt bobbin thread for the top and bottom.

I also modified a quilting hoop by wrapping grip tape around it. I placed the hoop around the needle and used that insead of my hands in gloves to guide the fabric. I found that everytime I needed to move a pin, I had to take off BOTH gloves to do it. Don' t ask me why both gloves, but I guess I needed to remove both gloves at some time and my brain was imprinted!

Once all the s-i-t-d was done I could quilt "properly". I don't particularily like stitching in the ditch and consider the free form quilting the best way to go. Mum's quilt is a block of the month she did a few years ago...So, I quilted curved lines in each of the print pieces. I read somewhere years ago that we should quilt curved lines in straight quilts and straight lines in curved quilts. I do that and it works.

The center block and the side setting triangles are background fabric and were just screaming for something special. So, I changed the needle thread to a heavier cotton and filled in with a free form pattern. By making the blocks a bit different each time, I didn't have to worry about making a "mistake" and the blocks not being perfect.

The border is a combination of leaves and curls. I worked from the corners to the middle of the border and then back again adding more curles to fill in the spaces.

This quilt is almost done and now the worry is that I'll have enough of the needle thread to finish.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

A quilt in progress

I do a limited amount of custom quilting. I "sit and sew" on a regular sewing machine and quilt free hand. Some customers ask for very specific designs, some tell me to "do whatever....I trust you". What a wonderful compliment and responsibility!

I have had two quilts (my mum's) here to quilt for over 2 years. She pays for me to go to an annual quilting retreat with her each June and I am expected to get her quilts quilted. I am very far behind. So, my challenge is to get these two done before I see her in June!

I have just finished a challenging more said about that other than now that I am done, I feel much lighter and want to get onto other projects.

Mum's orange quilt is one of them. I have decided to journal the process. I sat down yesterday and began the "stitch in the ditch" quilting around the blocks. I don't normally do this, but feel that the quilt needs this to keep the diagonal blocks from stretching too much. I want to do some really neat free form on the blocks and heavily quilt the background. We'll see once all the dreaded "stitch in the ditch" is done.

So, now off to put the plugs in my ears.....My music and stitch some more. I'll take and post a picture when this first step is done and try my best to record each step....just for interests sake.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

snow, snow and more snow

I went out shopping for new shoes sandles in sight for me. I had to get shoes that wouldn't allow any snow in! More snow this weekend. I want to put extra sweaters on because the air conditioning is too low....not because it is cold outside and there is a foot of snow on the ground!!!

Ok, enough complaining. I am busy working on next month's Stash Buster sample. These monthly events have been fun. We have seen some really great quilts. Astrid and Joanne have completed their top from January. The border really finishes the quilt.
Joanne has also completed her Chocolate Delight quilt top. the top pictures is my sample (still not complete) on the design wall. The bottom is Joanne's quilt - completed!!!!
This Friday we are doing the Garden Path...assorted greens and floral coloured prints. I want to get some more FQ cut for swapping and then need to get a head start on next month's Flying High.....

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Time Gets Away

It is amazing how quickly time gets away from us. We have been back from Vancouver just over a week and it feels like I never left. Our classes are filling up and we are excited about the coming spring. Lots in store for us at Needleworks.
I wanted to add a few here goes.

These are pictures of two recent students who completed their Quilter's Primer class. In this class students stitch 6 (12") blocks, join them with sashing and borders, layer, quilt and add binding. I have found this method to be the best for beginner students. There are not that many decisions to make other than chosing fabrics, which leads to greater success. And believe it or not, its all done in 5 weeks (3 hours each) with a bit of homework.

I have also completed custom quilting a quilt this week. This is a lovely quilt to work on. Once I got into the rhythm of just flowed.

A closer look of the quilting.
The you can see the quilt details. I used Wonderfil Silco Multi thread for the front and back. Blends beautifully.

Now all I have to do is finish the next quilt on the table....this has taken a very long time....and get to the pile I have stacking up. I'll try to post more pictures of custom quilts on the web page as I complete them.

Just had to show off Astrid's Winter Ice Stash Buster Quilt Top. We will be working on the Chocolate Delight this Friday evening and I'll have more pictures to show.

Friday, February 20, 2009

I'm back

What a wonderful weekend we had. We took two days to drive to Vancouver from Calgary and then another two days to drive home. I visited a number of sewing stores....bought a whack of books, some notions and yarn for more socks! I even knit 3/4 of a sock for an up coming birthday present! Now to find the time to do the other one!

As I can't find my camera!!!!