Monthly Archives: April 2013

Chapter 13: The Story Behind the Quilt ~ Unsewables

As you know I had rusted some pieces and was not able to sew them on my sewing machine. Rust adheres to the fabric and little bits of metal will get into your machine besides breaking a lot of needles. I finally got smart and did some research on sewing rusted fabrics after the fact. Not wanting to just throw them away I decided to figure out a way to use them. I am having a lot of fun. I have done spiral stakes, a circular saw blade (have two more) and spiral shanks. Here is some before and after.

Before Rusted Blade

Before Rusted Blade

After

After

Before spiral shanks

Before spiral shanks

Before Spiral Shanks

Before Spiral Shanks

 

These were rusted nails

These were rusted nails

Each piece I am working  on I am trying new things, like Tyvek beads  and beading. It is a fun process to just let yourself go and try something new. I have two more saw blades and a bike chain to put together. Stay tuned and will keep you posted!

 

 

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#11 WIP Wednesday ~ What to do with Rusted Pieces of Fabric

If you have been following along with me I explained how you can not sew rusted fabric on your sewing machine. Not wanting to throw away the pieces that I rusted I figured out what I will do with them.

My first small quilt will be made from this piece that has a lot of rust on it. I cut it up carefully!

Rusted Blade

Rusted Blade

I pieced a background  of different browns that went nice with the rust color. I then ironed on HeatnBond lite to the back of the pieces of my rusted fabric that I cut up. Ironed them onto a bright chartreuse  fabric that also had a layer of HeatnBond lite. Cut those out to make it look like a boarder was placed around each piece of rusted fabric. Then I randomly heat set all the pieces in place.

Close up of small zig zag stitch around rusted piece

Close up of small zig zag stitch around rusted piece

If you remember you can’t sew on rusted fabric because of the metals that adheres to the fabric will get into your sewing machine. I did a really small zig zag thru two layers of fabric so that the metal would not go thru to my machine, just catching the edge.

I added some large hand stitches and then buttons.

A great way to add buttons by machine ~ drop feed dogs, put machine into zig zag stitch, carefully check to make sure your zig zag stitch goes from one hole to the other without hitting the button itself. I take about 12 stitches and it holds it in place great. Those that make clothes probably know this but I don’t make clothes so this was a great surprise to me!

button with zig zag stitch

button with zig zag stitch

I have a couple of other rusted saw blades and other pieces that I am going to make some mini quilts out of so keep an eye out for my rusted fabric mini quilts!

 

 

 

 

 

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The Story Behind the Quilt~ Chapter 12 The Poppy Quilt

Well if you were following me you noticed on my WIP wednesday I was trying to finish up my Poppy quilt. It is finished! Yay!

I had a couple of glitches along the way. Well not exactly glitches but things I wanted to change as I was going along. On my butterfly that I printed onto  fabric using my computer, I had to piece the butterfly together. Not sure if I like the outcome but once I made some changes I could live with it. When it printed, it printed light and it didn’t have the depth of color that my original photo had so I got out my pebeo seta color transparent paints and went to work. I just went over the colors with the paint to make them really pop. I added some orange in with the yellow on the butterfly parts also. Below is before and after photo’s.

Before painting!

Before painting!

after painting

after painting

Also, after quilting the whole quilt, I added the butterfly and then I added the yellow flower to the left of the quilt. Once quilted, it just didn’t look right with the other flowers that were beautifully painted. So I went ahead and painted this flower also but just added a mix of yellow and orange, then some brown to the center like the other flowers.

before quilting and painting

before quilting and painting

After quilting and painting

After quilting and painting

I was happy once it was all done with some of the changes I made at the last minute. I also enjoyed doing a quilt with so many different techniques and combining them all together. Here is the finished quilt!

Field of Poppies!

Field of Poppies!

 

 

 

 

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#10 WIP Wednesday ~ My Painted Poppies

Welcome to my WIP wednesday. Two weeks ago I talked about picking out  a certain background for these beautiful painted poppies I purchased on etsy from Gayle Pulley of Paintedquilts.

original thought

original thought

Well after changing my mind over a dozen times or so, I refigured my design and decided to make it a confetti quilt. One, most confetti quilts are all done completely confetti style. If you don’t know what a confetti quilt is, it is fabric cut up into small squares or shapes about 1/2 inch or smaller. Your whole quilt is usually done like that.

extension of the yellow painted flower

extension of the yellow painted flower

I wanted to keep my painted poppies as one panel and add confetti to the background of the quilt. I  wanted to extend one of the flowers out into the confetti field. I also wanted to add a large butterfly. My thought process was looking thru a camera trying to take a photo of the flowers then the background and side of the quilt would be a little blurry, but look, a large butterfly got into the photo too. Can you tell where I am going with this?? Just my thoughts on how this design came about. Don’t worry if you can’t follow along sometimes it is just my thoughts and I try to incorporate them into a design! LOL

confetti done on one side with placement of butterfly

confetti done on one side with placement of butterfly

If you want to learn how to do a confetti quilt a great magazine article by Sally Manke was published in the Art Quilting Studio Winter 2013 issue, or you can see her beautiful confetti quilts in her etsy shop ~ https://www.etsy.com/shop/SallyManke

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The Story Behind The Quilt ~ Chapter 11: Whole White Cloth Quilt Dilemma

Back in the  90’s when I had my quilting business a customer came to me and asked me to hand quilt a whole cloth piece of fabric already marked. She came with the top, backing, and the batting. At that time this batting was new to the market and I told her I have never used this batting before and would prefer to use the batting I like because I knew it wouldn’t cause any problems. But she persisted. So after a few months of hand quilting this queen size quilt she came to pick it up. Not one day later she came back very upset and wanted a refund. When she washed the quilt to get the marked lines out of the quilt it seems some stains showed up on the top. Come to find out the the cotton batting had cotton seeds that had not all been taken out of the batting. It left oily looking stains on the quilt. Small dots of off- white coloring showed up on this beautiful white quilt.

Quilt before washing!

Quilt before washing!

I notified the manufacturer at the time. Sent the quilt to them to look at it. They sent it back and went to work on fixing the problem.

Being a business woman I thought this really isn’t not my fault. I tried to talk her out of the batting that she personally bought. I ended up giving her money back for my time and the materials she bought. She still wanted the quilt. I ended up with the quilt.

First solution: I ended up tea dying the quilt. I filled a large tub with lots of tea bags and hot water and submersed the quilt. Left it for a day. Then washed and hung it to dry. I didn’t think it was that bad. I gave it to my parents that year. The photos below is what the quilt  looked like after years of being washed and used.

Tea dyed

Tea dyed

 The spots were getting darker and darker.

Spots getting darker!

Second Solution:  I took the quilt and decided to dye the quilt. (I had been experimenting with dying). After talking to the company that I bought the dye from, they told me how to do it in my washing machine. By the way, my parents love deep purple. Their favorite color. I went ahead and dyed the quilt.

back fabric different

back fabric different

It came out beautiful. The top and back fabric of the quilt where different so the dye took different. You can not see any of the original cotton seed stains at all and it washed beautiful.

All Finished!

All Finished!

One problem happened. When I put the salt in my washer (a lot of salt) to dye it my washing machine  started to act funny. It made it thru a week before it went kaput! I think the salt killed it! LOL. Oh well at least the quilt will last for more generations then the washer. You might have a project that just didn’t work out and might be able to come up with a solution that can save it. I love this purple quilt now!

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WIP Wednesday ~ #9 customer dragonfly quilt

I just did a trunk show for the local Quilting Guild in my area. I had a lot of great feedback. One of the women came to my home and purchased some of my quilts and asked if I could do a special order Dragonfly for her daughters birthday. We talked briefly about what colors. She bought some of my inspirational word quilts and I still had some of that fabric left so I went ahead and used what was left for her dragonfly.

Original fabric to start with!

Original fabric to start with!

Dragonfly wings done!

Dragonfly wings done!

Stencil onto fabric “DRAGONFLY” using stencils and shiva paint sticks. Wait 48 hours for paint to dry. Applique some flowers in place. Applique the dragonflies body next. Finish piecing the top together, then sandwich my quilt and start to quilt!

add some extra quilted flowers!

  add some extra quilted flowers!

Add some colorful feathers!

Add some colorful feathers!

close up of feathers

close up of feathers

Quilt bound and finished!

Quilt bound and finished!

Now keeping fingers crossed that she likes what I did!

 

 

 

 

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The Story Behind The Quilt ~ Chapter 10: Soaring Dragonflies

First I have to tell you that most of these photos were not taken in good light when I started this project. The finished quilt is the true colors so you will have to bear with me!

I continued on my way of exploring something new  and heard about a water soluble stabilizer. I really wanted to try this out. After doing some research online and talking to different people that have used them, I purchased a roll at a quilt show. Not just a few sheets but a roll! LOL, Why do anything in half measures, right?

For a while, I have really wanted to do a dragonfly quilt. After drawing out my idea and then pasting it up on my work board I searched thru my fabric stash to find a grey blue background with movement. I opted for a lighter border around the blue. I pulled out my freezer paper and drafted out the large background and boarder then used the freezer paper as a template for each piece. It is one solid piece in the center and one solid piece for the border.

Dragonfly Background

Dragonfly Background

I then sent my husband to take some pictures of cattails which I enlarged on my computer to the size I wanted. The green leaves were easy enough to make by just taking green fabric and ironing heat & bond to the back side of the fabric and then cut out each leaf and then place them on the background piece of the quilt and iron them into place.

#217-Dragonfly 07

Cat tails!

Cattails done!

Now the top of the cattails were different. I got my water soluble stabilizer out and just drew out on the stabilizer the ruff cattail top. Then with a lot of thread, my feed dogs down on my sewing machine, with my darning foot,  I proceded to have fun going back and fourth with a variegated thread. Once I got the cattail top to look like I wanted, I cut it out and placed it all in warm water to dissolve the stabilizer. Took the cattail top and used more thread to attach it to the quilt top.Yay, cattails done.

Lilly Pad

Lilly Pad

The other background pieces on the quilt I did the same way with heat & bond. I even put all the dragonfly bodies on with heat & bond. Then I went and did a satin stitch around all the raw edges. Every leaf and every dragonfly body.

#217-Dragonfly 04a

What was left were the dragonfly wings. I wanted the wings to look realistic. Going to my local library and searching the shelves I came across this book that had a close up of the wings. I scanned the wings into my computer and then enlarged them onto paper. I took my wash away stabilizer and drew all the little connections of the wings with black ink. Then I placed a shimmering grey piece of tulle on top of that. Then I placed them in a small hoop to hold it all in place. Why tulle? Because if you look at the dragonfly wings and you just thread the lines once you wash your stabilizer out nothing is connected so it won’t stay together. Dropping my feed dogs and using my darning foot with black thread, I carefully went around each little area a couple of times so that it would stand out. I then very carefully cut around the outside of the wing as close as I could. In a flat pan with warm water I soaked the wings till the stabilizer disintegrated. Then carefully laid them flat on a towel to dry overnight. The next day I attached the wings by carefully going around the outer edge with more black thread and the main part of the wings to hold them in place. I did this with all the dragonfly wings on the quilt. Even the little ones.

Wings of Dragonfly!

Wings of Dragonfly

Adding the wings to the top of the quilt!

Adding the wings to the top of the quilt!

Once the quilt top was pieced the way I wanted, I layered my quilt with batting and backing and quilted away.

Before being quilted

Before being quilted

I decided on a pebble design for the outer edges like stones around a pond. In the water part there is a lot of quilting swirls to go with the water theme. Another quilt done trying something new!

Finished Quilt

Finished Quilt

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