I have procrastinated too long about showing some of the quilts and embroideries I have stitched over the last 30 years. I am now rectifying this and hope to add to my journal as quilts and creations are gradually completed. I have so many unfinished projects many of these used for teaching purposes. I have decided that after the last few years during which I have been unable to stitch as much as previously it is time to try and finish as many as possible.
I hope that you enjoy looking at some of my creations as I work through this pile! It may take some time.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Applique and quilt

Applique in the hoop
 This quilt started out as a digitising lesson for Otto & Pennys Sewing Centre and the Embroidery Forum.  The idea was to show how to digitise free motion applique.  We followed that lesson with one showing how one could make the quilt and preview it using the Quilter part of Designer 6 software.
When I decided to make the quilt, I played around with lots of blocks but finally decided to make my own five patch chain block leaving me a large alternate block for the applique flowers.  I had intended to applique flowers in all of the blocks, but decided that a quilting design would be much better and make the quilt "lighter".   The blocks were pieced and borders added.  I then quilted all of the straight line quilting through the middle of the small blocks, around the red border and finished with hooped quilting in the print border. I then finished off the edges with piped binding.  Next step was to hoop each plain block using the Bernina jumbo hoop.  The applique designs were surrounded by stipple quilting which was stitched before the applique but in the same embroidery file.  The border designs did not include the stippling and this was stitched after the applique was finished. 
I finally decided that there needed to be more straight line quilting and I think that the closeups will show this, including a thread I hadn't noticed until I uploaded that particular photo.
A quick note - I used an assortment of batik fabrics for this quilt - approximately 20 greens and yellows with 40+ oranges and reds for the flowers.

Alternate Block quilting which echos the applique design.
Closeup of the border applique designed to fit the edge triangles

Block applique

Corner applique
I hope you like this quilt.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Better late than never

Hi, it has been a while since I last posted but I have been busy both stitching and with family commitments.  I have finally finished several quilts and with others nearly there also.
Otto has one of the Bernina quilting frames now in the shop and we have been busy learning how to best use the software and put the results onto a quilt.  The quilt I am posting today is one that I used for a teaching sample back in the very early 1990s in fact, it might have begun before that as I can remember purchasing fabrics from a store that has since closed when we were living in a little country town called Saddleworth.  We moved there in mid 1987, I began my first quilt - a Baltimore album queen size hand appliqued and quilted piece - and we moved from there to Cowell early 1990.  By that time, I had been merrily stitching and I was asked to have an exhibition of my quilts.  I filled the institute building - for those who don't know this is a community building and generally there is one in most country towns and they are huge!
Anyway in order to practice using the quilting frame I decided that it was time some of these old quilt tops were quilted.  This one is an old favourite and still popular no matter the colours used or the setting used.  I used a quilting design that came with the software and "scooted" the second row to intertwine with the first row of stitching.  With the second row, I actually decided that it would be quicker to take the original design into the PatternCad where I changed into a pattern that began at the halfway point of the original design.  Much easier and quicker to use once that was done.  PatternCad is really quite easy to use.

This was one of my early scrap quilts and even then I believed in using lots of different fabrics, quite a challenge then as we did not have too many quilt shops.  I can remember phoning USA (Keepsake Quilting and Hancocks) to add to my stash. 

The quilt didn't take too long to quilt but a lot longer than I anticipated as I had moved the designs closer together so that there was little blank areas

A close up of the centre

 One thing that took a bit of juggling - with this top I had purchased a Jinny Beyer strip to use for the background.  Enough for me to machine quilt.  However, the quilting frame needs a lot more so I had to piece the backing including fussy cutting.  Now that it is quilted, one would never know!  I must remember to take a photo of the back to show.
I just need to doctor the next lot of photos for another top - another teaching sample - and I will post that tomorrow.  This one was custom quilted but more tomorrow.