Saturday, September 21, 2013

block for sarah...

This is a block for Sarah Fielke's Birthday quilt which is a re-creation of her "All That And The Hatter" from her latest book. As ridiculous as it sounds, this block took me forever to make. My first attempt at appliqueing the handle with freezer paper was a complete disaster. Am not very experienced and that inner curve was tight. The block was saved by my discovery of this tutorial on front basting by Liza Prior Lucy.  In front basting, I copied the shape of the handle on freezer paper and then ironed it to the right side of the fabric. I then sewed this to the block with contrasting thread. If you click on the photo below you can see this step in more detail. I sewed at a regular 2.5mm stitch length. Then I unpicked a few stitches at a time trimming as I went and hand sewed with a matching thread. The beauty of this method is that you don't need pins or glue. The piece is very stable and the unpicked stitching creates the perfect crease to turn the seam allowance. Can't say front basting will make an applique addict of me but it sure made the technique pretty painless... Hope she like it!

Saturday, September 14, 2013

st. louis 16 patch top finished...

I finished this top a few days ago but needed BOH's (Beloved Other Half's) help to photograph it. This St. Louis 16 Patch is so large that Mark very kindly borrowed some rigging stands meant to hold movie lights from the studio from the Key Grip. Thank you so much Stretch (yes that is his name...)! Still wrestling with how it is going to be quilted...

Below is a shot of my crew lying down on the job.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

challenge 4 art #2...

As I wrote about here, I excitedly joined this group "Challenge 4 Art". Our second challenge was "BLUE". I decided to explore the subject on two levels. I made a quilt about my first "grown-up" bike from my childhood. At the time, all the girls' bikes in the store were pink and I desperately wanted a blue one. My parents ended up giving me the boy's metallic royal blue 10 speed model. I loved it although admittedly that crossbar made for some painful abrupt stops! Furthering the blue theme, I made my piece using a cyanotype imaging or blueprint process that makes a cyan-blue photo on paper or fabric. Because the method is so fast I could not take pictures.

It is a very easy process with only 4 steps:
  1. Place your design element on the treated fabric. (I printed the bike image on overhead projector acetate from the office supply store. I covered everything to weigh it down with glass from a picture frame to make the image as sharp as possible.)
  2. Expose the fabric to sunlight. (It took about 12 minutes on a sunny day at around 2 pm but this varies depending on where in the world you live and the weather conditions.)
  3. Rinse the fabric until the water runs clear.
  4. Dry the fabric and then use!

The contrast in my image could be better. My acetate was a bit transparent which means my bike ended up pale blue rather than white. I wanted to try again by marking over the transparency with a black pen but since the weather was not co-operating by becoming overcast I used the original print I'd made enhanced by some free motion embroidery and a zig zag border to suggest motion.

You can buy pretreated fabric or the chemicals to make your own blue prints at this site. Cyanotype printing is a fascinating process and the level of detail achieved is just amazing. Have a look at theses images at Flickr. As in the last challenge, it was so much fun to try something new and am looking forward to the next one. Check out how the other Challenge 4 Art participants LisaAmy and Claudia interpreted "BLUE"!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

fresh sewing day...

Can't believe it is the first of September and the end of summer! This month I am linking to Lynne's Fresh Sewing Day for the first time in awhile. August was a bit of a blow out on the sewing front but I did manage to finish sewing all the blocks for a huge St. Louis 16 Patch top. Above is what I think will be the final layout. I could not find a good space to lay the blocks out so the this is not a shot of the actual fabric but a paper mini mock up. My software was not co-operating but my scissors, tape and printer were!  Doing it Old School... Here are the fabric blocks. Also, made a small art quilt for my "Challenge 4 Art" group but we are posting on Tuesday. Have a look at what everyone made in August!

Lily's Quilts