Aug 25 12

Long Absence

Sorry it has been so long since my last blog post.  There’s nothing  going on behind the scenes to worry about; I’ve just been way overextended and haven’t had a second to come up with a blog  post.  Because of vacationing coworkers, I’ve been working many more hours than usual at hospice, so my “free time” has kind of evaporated.  I should have a bit more time over the next couple of weeks, though, so my goal is to spend loads of time sewing and hopefully, I will be able to get back to more regular blog posting.  I have gotten some sewing done, so here are some shots of a wall hanging I recently made.  (Sorry about the not-so-great photos.  I didn’t realize until tonight that these photos weren’t very good and I’ve already given this wall hanging away.)

This “tulip quartet” was an experiment in playing around with a single stem of a tulip and I like how it came out.  It’s all done as machine embroidered applique and I cut the shapes using my Sizzix  Big Shot machine and Appli-K-Kutz dies. The batting is another 2-layer combo.  The bottom layer was a Hobb’s silk batting (this is the batting that’s become a disappointment to me when used alone but I’ve got a lot of it that I need to use up.)  The top layer is an ultra-thin polyester batting that is sold by the yard at a local fabric store in Asheville.  I wish I could tell you who makes it but I don’t know and neither did the store owners!  What really blew me away was the incredible texture that was created by adding that ultra-thin layer of polyester batting-it really made the quilting look great!  Here is a shot of the background fill quilting in the center square:

These aren’t actually feathers, but the quilting definitely gives you that same luscious feeling that feathers do.  It’s the rudimentary version of the “plumify it” background fill design and it really lends a great sense of movement to a quilt.  Here is a closeup of a stem shape; this was cut using the “Stylized Stem 2 die.”

…and you can kind of get a sense of how it poofs out from the background, yet there is no trapunto layer here.  Again, this is the beauty of machine embroidered applique.  Because all the decorative thread work is done when it’s just a quilt block, the stitching isn’t drawn into the batting layer the way that quilting stitches are.   Here’s a closeup of a tulip:

…and here’s a shot of the background quilting in the green/blue corner setting triangle section:

That is just a simple loop-d-loop design but sometimes it can add a wonderfully simplistic but fanciful look to a quilt.  I used a YLI Variations thread called “Grass” for that section and it is one of my favorite threads for quilting.  This last shot of the feathers will give you a sense of the ” faux-trapunto” effect this machine embroidered applique can lend to a quilt.

There is a line of stitching in Superior Threads Monofilament Thread, (aka invisible thread) that outlines the stitching that finishes the feather edges, but the outline (that you can’t see) is the only quilting done on the feathers.  All of the fanci-schmancy thread work that you see on this quilt is the machine embroidered applique!  This wall hanging was donated to the Asheville Quilt Guild small quilt auction to raise money for community quilt supplies.  If you’d like it, you can bid on it during the auction on the last weekend of September 2012.

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  1. Donna Says:

    So beautiful. Love the batting combo. I use 20/80 that i love for quilts. It is light and warm. I would like to try the thin poly idea when i want the quilting look puffy. Glad things are getting getting back to normal. My summer was crazy too.

  2. Donna F Says:

    Absolutely gorgeous! As always your colors are awesome. I am going to start using wool batting soon for my quilts, can you recommend a brand that will be extra puffy for my applique?

  3. SewCalGal Says:

    Beautiful as always.

    I am curious how you feel your eye is being drawn – is it to the machine embroidery or to the free-motion quilting?


  4. Doreen Says:

    That batting combo is very interesting. I haven’t come up with a local source for the silk batt so haven’t had opportunity to work with it. Your results, with the 2 layers, turned out wonderful! The applique is outstanding (figuratively and literally!!)!!
    Where DO the days go???????

  5. Jean Says:

    Gorgeous as always. YOu do wonderful work.