Thursday, October 29, 2009

Current Quilting Project

So I've been cutting templates, cutting material and sewing curves. All for my little latest project. It's a small one so it's a nice change after all the more longterm projects I have been working on. It uses small panels of really bright colours amidst large expanses of white. I think it will look really good. More as it comes.

It's the Autumn Quilt Festival at Chilford Hall on November 6-8th. I am so excited. I am going to restrain myself though as I went rather mad at Birmingham. All I need is some white material to finish this project off and a backing material perhaps. But what can I say? sometimes you just can't help yourself! Clairey will restrain me right? right?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Applique bits

I sewed my last leaf today and ironed all my bits. I've been taking it very slowly, as it's a bit laborious to try and do it solidly, but every time I sit down to watch TV I've been doing what my mum advised. Tacking leaves and sewing circles. After my awful attempt at the fast way, the difference it makes doing it this slow way is amazing. I am half tempted to unpick my first attempts but if I did that I think the quilt would no longer me my test quilt. There's something satisfying about being able to see your skills progress from one shitty edge to the final perfect one. Well I say perfect…

So in a nutshell, the winning applique technique I have found works best:

Iron freezer paper templates onto wrong side of material.
Cut round material leaving 1/2 inch seam.
Fold edges over freezer paper and tack right into paper roughly making sure you start outside in so your knot is easy to cut off once you've sewn it.
Pin and sew onto material 3/4 way round
Undo tacking, retrieve freezer paper and sew to finish.

Cut shape out leaving 1/2 inch seam
Use a double thread making sure the lopped thread is at the end of the thread
Sew from outside in leaving a small loop on the outside to start with
Small tacking stitches all round circle
To finish come out through the top into the loop
Place mylar template inside and pull thread in loop to tighten
Extract mylar

It's a real rigmarole. Definitely more pernickerty than other methods I've seen, but it gives a foolproof finish as the shapes don't look lumpy when sewn on. Maybe as I get better I'll do it differently, but my mum still uses this technique and she is an applique machine I tell you!