Thursday, 29 March 2018

Challenges Met

Three secret sewing projects with March deadlines = a very quiet blog!

I'm happy to report that all three projects have been completed and entered in their respective challenges. Whew!

Here's something I can share - a client quilt, Fresh off the Frame!

This quilt was a challenge for its maker, with all sorts of bias edges and weird angles. She was a little stressed out by the end because the darn thing refused to lay flat.

When she asked if I could do the quilting I said, "YES! I'd be happy to help."

I promised that - though there may be a ripple here and there - the quilt would lay flat and look BEAUTIFUL when it was done!!!

I decided to spray-baste the quilt before loading it on the frame, using the construction seams (it was assembled in quarters) as my guide for squaring the quilt top. Once the horizontal and vertical lines were established, excess fabric was evenly distributed and controlled.

In addition to the spray-basting, straight pins helped prevent shifting as the quilt was loaded.
(Better safe than sorry, I say!)

Once it was on the frame, I worked from the center, out.

Wavy lines, swirls, and S-curves helped "eat up" fabric while complementing the modern aesthetic of the quilt.

As promised, the quilting did the trick. The quilt is officially flat, and looks amazing!!!

I sure love a happy ending!

Linking Up With:
Let's Bee Social @ Sew Fresh Quilts
Needle and Thread Thursday @ My Quilt Infatuation

Try, Learn, & Grow!

Friday, 9 March 2018

Drop-Dead Gorgeous!

"Arcadia Avenue" is exactly that.
The colours sing against a dark background, and the blocks - well!   Intricate piecing pushes this quilt over the top!

My client requested a feathered wreath in each block, and I was certainly game!
It seemed like a smart way to enhance the quilt. Still custom, but less intensive than designing something different for every block.

The blocks are quite large (as you can see, below), so I needed a large-scale plan.

Hatching the Plan
  • Step one - make a bunch of small doodles to generate ideas.
  • Step two - draw the best ideas at actual size.
Pretty quickly I could see what I liked (and didn't like) for this quilt.

Executing the Plan

A stitched spine kept the inner and outer feathers of the wreath tidy. A chalked boundary helped keep the wreath nice and round.

I used an acrylic template as a stitch guide for the spine, and a somewhat more humble foam plate for chalking the boundary line. (...officially a tool once the pin was added for centering, right? Yep!)

The chalk line also acted as a pretend-spine for the outer ring of feathers, added to fill the remaining space in the block.

(You can see what I mean in the picture, below. Notice the wreath in the center, and the filler fronds around the outside edge.)

I was pleased with how great the feathers looked in every, single block!
(Everything is just a theory until the needle goes into the fabric!)

See what I mean?

Giant wishbones were used in the background between the blocks. Their straight lines provide a foil for the feathers, and they don't pull attention away from the stars of the show.

Generous (gigantic!) feathers flow along the top and bottom borders, and also appear in the skinny "filler" triangles along the sides of the quilt.

Here is what the top looked like before it was quilted - I was a little nervous about poking a million holes in this baby. (Ulp!)

But all's well that ends well!

Linking up with:
Needle & Thread Thursday @ My Quilt Infatuation

Try, Learn, & Grow!