Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Getting it done

I am finally getting around to layering the sections of a quilt that I started over a year ago. I am teaching a Quilting In Sections class
for my guild next month and I need to get this to the point where I can use it to demo. The big hold up was getting the sashing and the border strips cut and then the backing. I went back and bought more of the striped fabric because I decided to put it on some of the back sections also. Then I discovered that the backing fabric that I needed was not going to work the way I wanted because I had cut 2 pieces from the fabric at opposite ends on opposite sides. This is not the first time I have done this kind of thing. I finally worked it all out after walking away from it several times.
These are the two right and left side sections all layered up and ready to quilt ,the backing is the same striped fabric.              
This picture shows one of the inside braids and sashing laying on the backing fabric for the inner sections.

The quilt below is a quilt that I made earlier as a class sample and it isthe kind of fabric that I am having fun working with right now. The sections between the braids are not pieced, it is a funky striped fabric that made it so easy to put it all together and quilt.

As I tried to work out how I wanted to make the best use of what I had decided to use for the back I kept becoming distracted.  I moved all the furniture again in my sewing room, I gave the fabric weaving a try, I finsished a community quilts top and I worked on writing some instructions for our stockpile of baby quilt blocks for our group at church. If we teach new quilters to make simple blocks and if everyone in the group makes blocks we can make a baby quilt or quilts quickly when we need them. This sounds good in theory anyway.

These blocks are ones that I made while I was writing the instructions. I also made up about 20 kits to make three blocks each from the same 2 fabrics.
When I got done with that I cleaned up the mess and I knew what to do to cut the backs for the sections of the braid quilt. I guess a part of my mind was working on that while I was doing something else. I love when that happens.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Denim Bag

I finished my little bag this morning. I can't believe how easy the weaving went. The instructions in the book were easy to follow.
I have not fused anything much for a while and even though I read Melody's tips on fusing, I had a few problems but all in all it went pretty well. Maybe  I need to slow down a bit and pay attention to what I am doing.
The photo shows up the marking lines that are used for guide lines when cutting and weaving but I really can't see them "in person". I used a chalk pencil that always comes out by itself as I am working but I had to work at getting it out of this. I will use a lighter touch next time.
I had a new blade in my rotary cutter but by the time I finished this it was beyond dull. The lighter fabric is a pretty stiff and dense fabric maybe some poly in it. I had to use a 100/18 needle for the stitching. I did a narrow zigzag over all the raw edges with medium blue thread.

The bag is about 7 1/2 by 9 inches and has a long strap that I can wear across my body to the opposite shoulder so I can have my hands free and not have to fuss with it all the time.
When I got to the flap I thought the whole thing was looking rather dull so I finished the edge with a heavy cotton varigated Jeans Stitch by YLI.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


This morning I was putting some stuff away in my sewing room and I picked up a denim skirt that needed new elastic in the waistband. I decided that I did not want to bother with doing that so I cut it up. What to do with it? I didn't want to throw it away, I could have done that without cutting it up. I looked around for some more denim and found a piece of something that is the weight of denim but different.  It contrasts with the denim so it is right.
For a long time I have been wanting to try weaving fused fabrics together. I bought a book last year  "Simply Stunning Woven Quilts" by Anna Faustino. I was so excited about trying the technique I could hardly wait to get started. I bought some great fabric but couldn't find anything I wanted to weave it with.  I bought fabric 3 or 4 times and never used any of it for one reason or another.

This morning it struck me that the denim would be a good choice to start my learning experience. The fabric was "free" not $25 a yard so if I messed it up I wouldn't be upset.

This picture shows my progress with the 2 pieces of denim fabric I am weaving together. I have 2 more strips to weave and then I will fuse it. I am working on a flannel covered piece of foam core that I use for a small design board. The directions in the book say to fuse it to batting but I don't want batting so I am fusing it to a piece of blue print fabric so I won't have to make a lining. I am going to stitch all of the edges with a narrow zigzzag.              I want to make a small bag that I can use for my wallet, keys and cell phone and not much more.  I will show my progress as I go along. I have already learned a few things that have shown me I was right to start with something other than "wonderful fabric".