Friday, January 27, 2017

Flag Rock

I have added some highlights and low lights to the rock.  Below is the photo.

Ok side by side.

The fabric resembles the photo but a bit darker.  I think it a reasonable facsimile.  Maybe with a blue background and grey or blue tulle over the portrait work.  I hope Mike and his family like the stylized result.  I need to make the birds yet.  I am thinking I will use black batik for the cormorants.  The tight weave frays less.  I could actually sew in the tulle from left to right completely.  Another thought.  

Flag Rock Progress

I am making progress on the rock portion of the quilt.  I have been layering fabrics on a non-woven which reminds me of the Stretch and Sew material that I used to make clothing patterns back when everyone was making polyester double knit pant suits.  Once I get this layered up  I wonder where and how I can store it while I am working on the storm at sea background.  Hmmmmmm....  I have more to do on the rock so I will keep going.  Maybe I can roll it up somehow.  Maybe it can fit in the trunk in the next room.  I like how it is coming along.  I am also wondering how I will stitch it down. I think I may look for some tulle to use as a top layer to stop any fraying.  I have this dark gold tulle that I have used on my hedgehog quilt and other portrait quilts but maybe silver or gray would be better for the rock.  I wonder if Ben Franklin has any.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Try Try Again

 For my nephew's commissioned quilt I was concerned about how to make the stars of the flag.  I decided that appliqueing them was not going to work and decided to embroider them.  I practiced various satin stitching with different threads and decided to use  Superior Thread Sew Sassy #3301 (Snow Cap).
 But then "Houston we've had a problem here".  The red fabric stained the stars red.  I was using a dry iron to paper piece the stripes.  I was very surprised that this happened.  This is why people prewash their fabric.
 I thought it would just come out in the wash.  I washed it with Tide.  Then I washed it with Tide and Clorox and then I tried some solid bleach followed by soaking it over night in OxiClean.  Nothing worked.  Some of the stars are still quite red.
I will spend today stitching stars on blue fabric.  I think my red fabric is well prewashed at this point. Hopefully I will not have to redo them.

Friday, January 20, 2017

The Easter Deadline

 I have been asked by a family member to make a quilt for them to give as a gift.  I have made quilts that I have given as gifts, but this is my first pro bono commission.  It is for his soon to be in-laws.  He gave me this photo that is from their favorite haunts, White Horse Beach.  I do like to make quilts from photos.  I have posterized it.

Now I am in the process of cutting up hunks to create patterns for chunks of fabric that I am gluing together.  I cut a large piece of nonwoven to use as a base.  You can see through to assist in positioning.  I have been using temporary spray adhesive to attach fabric to the nonwoven and then some water soluble glue to layer fabric on top of that,

Here is my progress so far.  I think I may commit to the completion of the top as my February OMG. I should really figure out when exactly Easter is this year.  I had fun picking out fabric.  I hope this goes well.  My plan is to applique the rocks onto a double on point storm at sea setting.  The top blocks will be light blues for the sky, the water will be light, medium and dark blues for the water and some tan blocks at the bottom to resemble beach.  I hope he likes the result.  I am worried about how to deal with the stars on the flag.  I have printed the blue field of stars and reversed the image.  I am going to try to embroider the stars onto some royal blue fabric using the printed image as my guideline which I will baste to the blue.  Here's hoping.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Modern Mystery Quilt 2012

by Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr

In 2012 I made the top and the bottom of this quilt.  One side was the modern mystery and the other side was Storm at Sea.  This quilt was a UFO because I had trouble getting the two sides together.  I added a burgundy Damask border to the Storm at Sea side.  The border was over sized to facilitate sandwiching.  I always have an extra 2 to 6 inch on the backing and then cut of the excess.  I had in my mind that Modern Quilts were often solids.  My brother had given my sister-in-law's stash to my sister and I.  Among the fabric was a bunch of solids.  Someone told me that she used this fabric to make flags.  I remember a time when people commonly displayed flags/banners/pennants outside their houses.  This fabric is heavy like denim or canvas and I wonder if it is water resistant.   I measured the sides, top and bottom and cut them accordingly.  The Damask is just a regular cotton and the print is also a regular cotton.  The Damask looked rippled...almost gathered.  It was not right and I was not sure what I could do to improve the situation so there it sat in the UFO piled.  I decided to tackle the problem and right or wrong do something.  Plus I wanted a quilt to practice my machine quilting.  I took the border off and starched it and rechecked the measurements. They seemed OK so I just reattached them.  They still rippled but less so.  I sandwiched it by basting with water soluble thread.  
 Modern Mystery Side
Storm at Sea 

When I made the Rami Kim Quilt I used circular spiral quilting.  I had seen an episode on and decided I would try it.  I really liked the result.  It dawned on me that I had taken a Craftsy class so I reviewed the course Next Steps With Your Walking Foot with Jacquie Gering and decided to try a diamond spiral pattern.  I used a 35 weight polyester Superior Variegated Thread.  
I was at home and my Bernina was at my mother's so I quilted it on my Tiara using my echo-foot.
 I have done very little on the Tiara and was thrilled that I had the opportunity so to do.  My quilting is pretty wobbly and my stitch lengths vary quite a bit but it was great practice.  I really love the result.  To do the diamond spiral one is supposed to mark a vertical and horizontal center.  I decided to forgo that and just use seam lines.  Where there was an expanse with no marking a drew a shot line or a dot.
My quilting rulers were at mom's so to assist with my stitching I grabbed my blade sharpener that was thick enough to serve as a guide.  I would lay it on the previous stitching line and run the echo foot up against it.  I was wishing I had my Line Tamer ruler.
Then on to the binding.  I started to hand sew the binding but this fabric is so heavy.   I remembered from a class I took on machine quilting.  She uses a double buttonhole machine stitch to attach her bindings.  I decided that I would try that.  I quite like the result.
I used these settings on my Bernina.  

And a 20D foot.  I figued out that if I allign the stitching line on the left inside foot that the stitching will line up nicely on the other side.
I had trouble at the corners.  I had to muscle it about to get it to continue stitching.  I wonder if it was hanging up on the even feed somehow.  I just could not figure out what the problem was.  I had no problem turning the corner but after I turned the feed dogs did not advance the quilt.  Binding a quilt takes me days by hand.  Doing this by machine I think made the binding secure.  I decided that this quilt needs to be a picnic quilt or a beach rug or something for the family pet to use.  I am thrilled that it is done.  This quilt is definitely a two sided quilt.  The quilting complements both sides equally well.  I did not look at the Modern Quilt Side until it was done.  I was well pleased.  Now on to the next unfinished project.

1718 Coverlet Inaugural

I was looking at The 1718 Coverlet book by Susan Briscoe given to me by my sister Paula and I realized that next year the coverlet will be 300 years old.  I decided that I needed to get to work on it.  In the spirit of OMG by ElmStreet Quilts  I decided it needed to jump the queue. Originally I thought of trying to finish in a year.  When I sat down and mentally calculated how many blocks a week I would have to do, I quickly realized that to impose such a stringent timeline on the project would take my joy away.  I decided to shoot for a two year timeline instead.  I started collecting fabric for this project a few years back.  I decided to honor the original which is made of silk. I would use silk radiance.  It is a cotton silk blend that can be hand washed.  I decided that quilts are not washed all that often so hand washing would be just fine. Most of my quilts have been cotton.  I recently started using wool.  This will be a new adventure.

I like the look of the look of the quilt so I originally planned on sticking to silk radiance and the color scheme of the original.  I was going to try my hand at dyeing some PFD silk radiance to emulate the striped fabric and let it be 100% silk blend.  I changed my mind.  I will make fabric choices block by block.  I have come Cherrywood hand dyes that I love and some cottons with text to represent the papers that had been used in the construction of the quilt by mosaic patchwork a.k.a English Paper Piecing.  I think my sister wanted me to join her in adventures in EPP and thought this might be the spark.  She was right.  I plan on using mixed techniques.  The whole project will be willy nilly. I like willy nilly.    

Digression:  I looked up the deriviation of the term willy nilly. "The Barnhart Concise Dictionary of Etymology says it's a contraction of “will I, nill I” or “will he, nill he” or “will ye, nill ye.” The word “nill” is from the Old English “nyllan,” a combination of “ne” (no) and “willan” (will). The phrase “willy-nilly” means “unwillingly” or “haphazardly." " Cool that.

I know OMG is not biannual. But I thought I would make short term goals along the way.  January goal is complete-Fabric Choices.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

January OMG finished

This project was a great learning experience.  I used the project as an opportunity to experiment with different threads and different stitches.  I am planning another wool project that will similarly use embroidery as embellishment.  This was good preparation.  I was going to start stitching but my nephew asked me to make a quilt for him to gift to his fiance's family.  He asked if it could be done by Easter to that project has bumped to the top of the list.  I am also working on quilting another project  for this month.  It is still underway.  I'll keep you posted.

......and now to see the second finish here is my ?2012 Mystery Quilt Finish

Come on over and join the fun at Elm Street Quilts OMG Linkups.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

The Quilting Begins with the Weaving

I  chose this thread, a discontinued Superior 35 weight thread because it had many of the colors of the fabric and wool.  I used Superior's Bottom Line in Black in the bobbin.  I think the quilting come out well so far.  I don't see any puckering on the back.  I am well pleased.  This gives me hope that I become a better quilter and become more confident.

I spiral quilted the center section which is quite thick because it was created by weaving doubled strips of fabric and then there is also a stabilizer on the back.  One of the quilting classes I took suggested that incorporating curved quilting complements with linear patterns. I reviewed my Craftsy Class Next-steps-with-your-walking-foot by Jaquie Gering before I proceeded.  The next part is more challenging.  I need to decide how to quilt around the applique.  While I am thinking about that I will do some simple Wobble Stitch in the first border around the center.  I think it is too late to do any good work tonight so I will give it up until the morrow.  I have to decide about the binding.  I have a piece of black to use for the hanging sleeve.  I will have to see if I have any more of this, but then I may decide to use the first border fabric for the binding.  I've got to quilt a 6 inch perimeter before I do that.  Good night all.

Rami Kim Ready for Quilting

 I used this blue wool for the bird beak but from a distance, you could not see the beak so I decided to add some oomph.
 I added a picot on top of the beak made from variegated  DMC perle cotton.  The beak is not stitched down.  I assembled the top by adding the borders to the woven middle.  Now I need to sandwich, quilt, add hanging sleeve, label and binding.  Getting there.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Rami Kim: Top Border

Before                                    After
I was bedazzling my quilt with Razzle Dazzle and had this thread piece left.  I guess since my grandparents and parents were depression era and was taught to waste not want not, I did not pitch this.  I used my bees wax thread conditioner and tamed it.  It needle quite nicely.
Here is the top border so far.  I was trying to learn how to pearl stitch around the gold triangle on the left and sometimes when I pulled the needle I got a knot and sometimes it did not.  I looked at the stitch diagrams over and over.  I have a little learning disability which was identified when I was in High School.  It seems that my reading speed was extremely slow compared to my vocabulary.  I qualified for special education services. The wonderful educators determined that I had directional confusion and intervened with some pull out classes to remediate my reading deficiencies.  The disability does not go away.  My brain works the way my brain works and sometimes it takes me a bit to figure out things.  In this stitch you have to turn the needle clockwise.  I finally figured out what I was doing wrong.  the first few stitches were not quite right but I left them as is.  They were knots and only I and now you know that they are a bit different.  Can you tell which ones they were?   

I just watched an episode of and learned that I should use nymo thread for beading.  I do not know what size or color to get so I think I will have to make a trip to the craft store to learn about beading threads so I can use them with my stitching.  I may add some beads to this later.  Now on to the bottom border.  Making progress.