Sunday, 15 July 2018

KISS Quilting

It's easy to get carried away and forget that simple can be strong.

This t-shirt quilt featured a number of stretchy, shiny, slippery (aka, uncooperative) fabrics. Some of the logos were heavily embroidered and others were kind of rubbery.

Either way, the stitching needed to be dense enough to prevent the logos from rippling, yet simple enough to visually disappear.

Thankfully I remembered the KISS principle in time to use it! (Keep It Simple, Silly)

Client quilt

I decided to alternate vertical and horizontal wiggly lines over the logo blocks, and then repeat the wiggles in the border for a cohesive finish.

Alternating swirls and wishbones in the striped rows between the blocks added interest and quickly filled those spaces.

Sometimes simple is best, don't you think?

Client quilt

The next quilt was also quilted simply.

My client requested large swirls in the background and wishbones in the printed border, and nothing too "frou frou", please!

Client quilt - BEFORE quilting

Alrighty, then!

To enhance the radiating design, I used point-to-point wiggly lines in the giant diamonds that make up the star, wiggly outlines in the triangles, and loopy "L"s around the perimeter of the medallion.

A zigzag wiggle following the curve of the yellow-green fabric that encircles the star completed the picture.

Client quilt - AFTER quilting

The zigzag wiggle came about because of seams that needed repair. Repeating the same wiggle in a decorative capacity integrated the repairs into the design.

Client quilt

I often repeat elements (swirls, loops, wiggles) from the quilt's body in its borders. Not only does it fit the KISS principle, it adds a sense of unity to the project.

Client quilt

So striking!

Client quilt

There's nothing quite like a log cabin quilt that plays with light and dark - AND there are stars!
I love stars!

What a great example of the KISS principle! Repetition of one simple block, rotated and thoughtfully placed = a delightfully complex looking design!

Client quilt - BEFORE quilting

This quilt just says "comfort" to me.

About the time I wanted a picture, I realized the light was good in our basement guest room.
How pretty!

Client quilt - AFTER quilting (Hearts in Bloom panto)

My next client designed herself a Canada 150 quilt based on a photo of a Peace Country icon - the sheds by the highway that signal the final leg of our journey home. 

Baste-y, baste-y, little quilt.

Client quilt - BEFORE quilting

The reference photo had big, fluffy clouds high in the sky, so I went with similar clouds in the quilting.

I used a combination of small, geometric curves and loose, wavy verticals in the field to imply distance. The small curves also help the trees fit into the scene by directly relating to them (another geometric shape of a similar scale) and grounding them (by touching at their base).

The vertical, straight lines of quilting around the trees are repeated horizontally around the lettering, completing a visual "L" that frames the scene.

Client quilt - AFTER quilting

KISS quilting. My favourite kind!

Linking up with:
Whoop Whoop Friday @ Confessions of a Fabric Addict
Show off Saturday @ Sew Can She

Try, Learn, & Grow!

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

New Life for an Old Coat

I'll do almost anything for family, so when my SIL requested a couple of teddy bears to pass along to her grandchildren in memory of her mother, it had to happen!

Vintage coat - the "before" shot

SIL also wondered if I could make a little something to preserve her mother's name embroidered in the lining . . . who would say no to that??? In fact, it sounded like fun!

Visions of upcycling upholstery and home d├ęcor samples I'd rescued danced in my brain!

The first step was to disassemble the coat. Out came the lining, pockets, shoulder pads, and so forth.

The bottom was double-lined. I think it was to ensure the coat would drape well and slip back into place as its (wearer? occupant?) moved around. Clever.

Seams were opened and the sleeves and collar removed.

Just enough for a couple of bears!

Once the fur was flat I could trace the pattern pieces onto the leather and cut them out.

Snippy, snip - use the tip to avoid cutting the fur

One bear - an "exploded" view.

Reminded me of hieroglyphics for some reason

Two "exploded" bears. They are similar, but not identical.

I lined the bears with muslin to keep the leather from being overly stressed when stitched. Wouldn't want to create perforated, tear-away seams!

I used locking doll joints in the neck, shoulders and hips so the bears can be moved and repositioned.

I also used safety noses and eyes that lock into place. A stitched nose is beautiful, but doesn't work very well on leather. That whole perforation, tear-away thing, ya know?

To preserve the fur, I did the bare (bear? haha) minimum of facial trimming. I also left some springy whiskers by their noses for character.

Fun whiskers

Oh, and the embroidered lining?

It became the genesis of a crazy patch cushion . . .

Collaged and fancy-stitched on this side

. . . with fur on the back.

Pieced the scraps for this side

Nice and plump!

Something from nothing!

The cushion is about 16 inches square. Here, you can see that the bears are sizable, too.

Paw pads = upcycled clothing

Bye, guys! Have a good trip home!

Test fit - they were plastic-wrapped and packed snugly for shipping

The box - and everything in it - made the trip in good shape, and my SIL is now sporting a big, happy smile!

Linking up with:

Monday Making @ Love Laugh Quilt

Try, Learn, & Grow!