Wednesday 14 September 2011

WOW: GoBaby Brights Quilt

WOW = WIPs On Wednesday

Yes, I've been working on my GOBaby Quilt again

I’m thinking about a border of half square triangles – done the fast and easy way of course.

I love it. I’ve already got plans for the next top and a few projects too. I didn’t think I’d be this excited about a cutting tool, but I have been pleasantly surprised.

Tuesday 13 September 2011

It’s Tomorrow, Today

Update: 10:55am

Yes, I am using fusible throughout. That way I can simply iron into place. I plan to satin or buttonhole stitch afterwards.

I am still considering my options - because fusible is too expensive to use as freely as I want. I have so many plans. I'm thinking about glues like liquid stitch? But since it's not readily available where I am, I am thinking this through.

With fusible, even with the added cost, I still feel the advantages outweigh the cost. I am really still experimenting and deciding as I go. I will keep you posted. Working with this easy cutter is still new to me.

So if you have any thoughts, please share them, I'd love to know.

Oops, I forgot to post my GOBaby progress. Where was I? Oh yes, here we are
As I mentioned in my previous post, going straight into arrangement without cutting is a lot of fun and I’ve been playing around with brights. I have some projects – a bit different to what I normally do, that I’ve been meaning to make for some time. But you know how it is. With so many WIPs on the go, I never find the time. And to be frank, I haven’t been motivated to organise and cut…for the sake of experimenting.
Until now...

Still going ... will update again
tomorrow for WOW

Monday 12 September 2011

Thank You Wyndham Quilters

Well, I had a lovely time on Saturday, guest speaking at the Quilt In. Being a Guest Speaker is really such an honor and something I enjoy so much. Sometimes when talking about your quilts (or looking through them) do you sometimes surprise yourself?
I do. I forget sometimes how many quilts I’ve made. It doesn’t feel like it as you work through each quilt, but after a few years (I’ve been quilting for 11) it starts to add up.
As per the theme, I wore black and white and my something bright was my lipstick.

Saturday 10 September 2011

Come and See Me Today

I've got my black and white...still sorting out the little bit bright part.
I have 10 minutes before I leave, so I'm thinking fast!

If you can, do visit the Wyndham Quilt In,
it's going to be a great day!

Thursday 8 September 2011

AccuQuilt GoBaby

I’ve heard a lot about GoBaby and no doubt, you have too. I’ve been wanting to try one out myself for a while now, so I was really happy to receive this machine from AccuQuilt last week in order to do just that.
If you’re anything like me, you have a lot of beautiful fabric you want to put to use. The idea of quick cutting really appeals to me. And I have to say, the GoBaby does not disappoint.
Yesterday I pulled some brights from my stash and started playing. How easy is it?
Prepare the fabric
I cut several layers at a time
And put the plastic cover on and roll it through

As I'm rolling these through,
I'm daydreaming about how wonderful it would be
if all applique were this easily cut...

The result is perfectly cut shapes

I keep the cut away fabric, I like these ‘negative’; stamped cuttings, I know I will use them to great effect somewhere, possibly a border.

When I ordered the bird, daisy and feather dies, I knew straight away that I wanted to applique brights on a plain white background – I want a fresh and vibrant feeling quilt.

This is not my usual kind of quilt - and that's what I was after. Something that allows me to experiment more than usual. I have a lot of tools that, honestly, I don't get much use out of.

It's always a dilemna when I find new interestings things. Will I use it? Will I really use it?

I can see so many possibilities with this tool

Something a little whimsy. Something to have fun puzzling together, because this is how it feels, with the cutting done you are simply putting what you want, where you want.

This is my progress in one afternoon….
Today I will iron down my designs and show you what I got up to, tomorrow

In the meantime, why not take advantage of Accuquilts current free offer?
Click below to find out more
22 Free Patterns - Download Now

Wednesday 7 September 2011

WOW: A Very Exciting Arrival

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays

Last week a little something special arrived in the shape of a parcel...

I was sick with the flu, so I wasn't able to enjoy it. I left it to sit on my studio table, surrounded by my shelves of fabric that this machine is going to help me conquer.

Oh yes, I have a lot of fabric and ideas. Today, I unpacked it and those ideas are shaping into a day of doing.....

Stay Tuned....

Monday 5 September 2011

The Stencil Option

Making Peaceful Pathways?
Have you considered the stencil option for your verses? Here's how I made mine:

From the pattern, trace the verses on a sheet of freezer paper which has been cut down to size.  With a cutting matt and scalpel, cut away the letters. Keep the letter insides where required and set aside, you will need these to complete your letters when ironing onto the fabric.

When you have cut away all your verses, iron them onto your background fabric. Use a hot iron - no steam, and ensure that all the edges are securely fixed down onto the fabric. You don't want any paint leakage when you begin to stencil.

When all your stencils are ironed to your fabric, it's time to paint the stencils. I have chosen a clear red without blue undertones. You can see the two reds here. As the fabrics I will be using in this quilt are not blue-reds, I have opted for a clear red hue for my verses.

You can stencil with any appropriate acrylic / fabric paint and textile medium, according to the manufacturer's directions. I use Permaset Aqua Fabric Magic. This paint does not require additional textile mediums and is an environmentally friendly textile ink.

The two reds here are: Mid red and Bright Red. The mid red has blue undertones and I have used the Bright Red in this case. These pigments won't fade or wash away and are considered to last as long as commerically printed fabric.

Stenciling is straight forward. The most important step to remember is that your brush should always be a little on the dry side and that it is better to build up colour gradually, remember - you are not painting and your brush should not be heavily coated. Saturating the stencil in colour will result in leaking and smears. Work as dry as you can.

Before painting in the stencil, always work a little product off onto some scrap fabric or paper toweling to blot off any excess paint.

Dab a little onto the freezer paper first, to ensure that it is not too wet. Build up the colour gradually as you work.

Then leave the stencil to dry about 2 minutes, it should be almost dry.

Now gently peel the stencil away from your fabric carefully

Some paints require a curing period of up to several hours prior to heat setting. With Permaset this is not required, so within a few minutes of peeling away the stencil, heat set your paint by ironing over the paint for several minutes with a hot dry iron. Your stencil is now set and is permanent.

Remember to cover the stencil with grease / parchment paper to protect your iron!

Now the stencils are heat set and permanent, it's time to get them into position. In this picture below, you can see the stenciled fabric and the template pattern behind.

DO NOT PRESS your block with the paper behind it from this point on as the graphite may transfer onto your lovely white block!

Using AURIFIL thread (this is a heavier thread used for embroidery), and a plain stitch on my machine, I followed the lines of the template and simply stitched over them. I released the top tension on my machine (because this thread is thicker) and it stitches beautifully without knots or shredding. It's a delight to work with. And I stitched 2 lines very close together to create a thicker line.

I used the printed template as a paper pattern to directly stitch over.

And to achieve this thickness, I actually stitched 2 lines very close together

Now, the inner text is framed in red according to the pattern, which is how I wanted it. You'll notice that I have stitched another line around it in white, following the template. This extra line is for my own personal margins, it shows me where to add a seam allowance to finish this block when I come to set it into the borders.

 For many of us, quilts are personal undertakings, and I am no different. Although I have been stenciling for a few years and am able to cut smooth flowing script, you'll have probably noticed the the text in these blocks is not perfect. However, I believe in the perfection of imperfections and in this case it is a sentimental imperfection for me - this is because I had my DD cut them out for me. I wanted her to do this and as you can see, she has never stenciled before! Therefore, some of the lines are jagged instead of smooth, so they do require some neatening up.

You can go back in with a toothpick and the original pigment ink if there is a larger
gap. You can also use Fabrico or Sharpie or Faber Castell Indian Ink in red or black. Basically, fill in the jagged and missed lines to make it as neat as cursive as possible.

I have not heavily corrected the text lines as I intend to sew over them at the quilting stage.

The red inner line to set the text, the white outer line to mark the boundary and then, I cut inside the last black outline (see template). Always measure twice and cut once and don't cut if you are unsure.

It is not necessary to cut this block down to size yet. I have been generous with allowances on this block as I know many quilters are embroidering and this shrinks the fabric down. My red stitching line didn't pull in, however it is a straight line. If you embroider or zig zag, you will have to test and re-measure. The template gives you 1/8th more.

This finished block measures 6.5 x 8.5inches with seam allowances, ready for setting into the border later.

A note on stenciling:
I used Permaset and the curing / iron times apply to this pigment only.
I have previously used and can recommend Jo Sonja Artist Paints and Textile Medium
There are lots of new products on the market, including paint stitcks, fabric fast pencils and crayons that will work just as well. Be sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions.

Stenciling is not a new technique, it is an old fashioned heirloom technique that is present in some of the oldest known quilts. It's definitely a method worth trying. If you are interested, why not try stenciling my Tulip Delight Table Runner - (on the sidebar) I have this project on offer for free.

Why not give it a go?

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