Jan 18 08

Another Quilt is Ta-Done!

I finally finished “Heralders of Spring, 52 inches High x 42 inches Wide:”


This was a very fun quilt to quilt, mainly because it’s just so darn thrilling to be looking at such lush colors while you work! I haven’t used a stipple stitch as a background fill in a LONG time, and I’d forgotten how easy it is to just kind of “space out” as you stitch away! Here’s a close up of a couple of the pansies, which are trapuntoed, so they kind of stick out a bit:


All the decorative stitching was done when it was just a quilt top, and then I stitched around all the pieces of appliqué with invisible thread once it was in a quilt sandwich. This makes the trapunto really prominent, but it also makes some of the non-trapuntoed appliqués a bit more prominent, like these leaves:


The short leaf stems are hand embroidered using a chain stitch, and then I quilt just outside the stems with invisible thread to make them have a nice texture. Fun! I like to put butterflies in a quilt partly because I just like how they look, but also because it provides an excuse to stitch some feathers as a flight path:


Here’s a shot of the base of the leaves-I think this area is a bit ho-hum:


I like this corner with the fern-variant of the artsy-fartsy leaves. I originally stitched these out using free motion machine embroidery using a permanent polyester interfacing as a stabilizer, and then stitched just outside all those bars with invisible thread once it was in a quilt sandwich. The picture doesn’t show it well, but it makes them prominent and they have a cool texture that you just want to touch:


I started out the same way with the artsy fartsy leaves in the opposite corner, but I wanted to experiment and see what kind of texture I got if I just stitched along the outer perimeter of the leaves. See how it makes the whole thing kind of balloon out? Yuck!


I like to have a variety of textures in a quilt, but I couldn’t bear to leave that in there, so I ended up stitching around all the individual bars again. Here’s a shot at the sewing machine of 1 out of 3 leaves done and it really shows the difference:


Much better! So here they are all done:


And here’s a shot of the hyperquilted heart leaf vines at the bottom. I love how they came out, but this is a perfect example of why you should never do this kind of hyperquilting on a busy fabric-there’s so much going on that all your work is lost in the frenzy!


I think I’m saying au revoir to the pansy for awhile…I love them and they sure are fun to make, but other flowers are beckoning me…


One Comment

  1. Mechelle Says:

    Hi Patsy – I got your DVDs for X-mas this year – I’m working through them now they are great!! Can you share your technique for the edge stiching on your appliques?? I love the way it looks, much better than plan ol’ satin stiching!

    Hi Mechelle,
    You’re gonna be shocked by just how easy that stitching is! It’s done with a straight stitch with your free motion foot. I think of it as kind of like an EKG stitch, you’re just going straight back and forth, using the outer edge of your appliqué piece as the “baseline” that you’re bouncing off of. The key to making it work is that you want to always stitch perpendicular to that baseline, so that means that you’ll be doing some rotations as you pass along curves. You want to deliberately vary the lengths of all those EKG lines-if you look closely at them, there is no pattern here, it’s just that I’m randomly making some of them longer and some of them shorter. You also want to never make them longer than half the width of whatever you’re working on. On large appliqué shapes, I never come close to that length.
    One more thing-I usually don’t pick a high contrast thread to do this stitching in, but I DO try NOT to match my thread and my background fabric exactly. (i.e. on a stem, I wouldn’t match my greens). I figure that I’m going to the trouble to do this decorative stitching so I want to make sure it will be noticed. Try it on a small fused appliqué and you’ll really like it-it’s very fast!