Monday, September 26, 2016

Upcoming Blog Hop will be Inspiring!

If you've been following my blog, you know that I had a book come out from the American Quilter's Society in late August.  Some of my fellow Island Batik Ambassadors and friends are all working on projects from my book to share with you in a blog hop coming October 10-14!  I am super excited to see what they come up with!  I've seen a few of their projects via email and they promise to be fantastic!


I also randomly found this design the other day when I was searching for a coloring page for my kids.  It would make a fabulous quilt!


I hope you get to quilt today!
Suzy

Friday, September 23, 2016

Blogger's Quilt Festival - Miniature



I am so loving seeing all the entries in the Blogger's Quilt Festival!  Here is my miniature quilt for the Festival.




Here is the process I used to make this quilt.  It was a challenge for the Island Batik Ambassadors.  It was really fun to make using their Fire Island line.



Here are some of the gorgeous black prints from this line.


I used an ink jet printer to print my leaf shapes (don't use laser printers on fusible because it will melt!)


Then I arranged them on a grid I'd drawn on my background fabric.


Here is the finished design.


Hmm....which thread to use?


Testing quilting ideas on tracing paper.


Using mirrors to reflect the quilting possibilities.


The quilt before binding.


The quilt after binding. I call it All Fired Up!   I really like this little quilt.  It's about 14 inches across. 


Here's a detail shot of the quilting.


I hope you get to quilt today and be sure to check out all the quilts in the Blogger's Quilt Festival!
Suzy

Free Motion Friday - Curl Echoes

There are many variations of curls out there and echoed curls too.  This is a take on them I have been working on.  If it's out there somewhere else, please let me know so I can give credit.


Directions for making this design are here.

Stitch in the the ditch around your block.  Then start off with a small curl between 1/2 and 1 inch in diameter.



Make a curl around the original curl and echo back making the distance between the lines about 1/8 of an inch.



Add a third curl echoing the first two.



Make an S shape off the curl ending a new curl to start your new echo.



Echo this second curl two times.



Make an S curve ending in a curl to start your third curl. and make two echoes around it continuing in this pattern.



Here's a curl in the corner.  You can see that I echoed around the curl, but had to stop in points because I hit the edge of the block.



Here is another example of when I hit the edge of the block.



You can see that I have an open area in the center of the picture.  It's almost completely contained.  These kind of areas are harder to quilt than any other kind because they have so many boundaries.  I try to avoid doing this, but it happens sometimes.



Another curl in the corner.



Oops....a little space I made.  Here's how I filled it:  Make a curl and then echoed around the extra space once.  Then I went into a new curl again.



Saving the center for last...how do I end if I'm in the middle?  Pick a place to end and just do it.  NO one will find it in the final design.


So....can you see where I ended in the final design?  Not easy is it?!


I'd love to see how your Brick Wall quilts are going!  Please share your pictures on my Machine Applique Adventures Facebook Group!

I hope you get to quilt today!
Suzy

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Blogger's Quilt Festival - Applique Category

I love this little runner!  I designed it based on a ironwork railing I saw in Prague, Czech Republic.  It's a really different looking flower and that's what made it so fun.  I also love the texture the quilting gave to the runner.




Here is the process I used to applique the pieces.  First layer:


Second layer:


Third Layer:


Final Layer:


I also had a lot of fun quilting it with designs from Christina Cameli's latest book.




And the final product!  It was so much fun to make and I'm excited to share it again her on the Blogger's Quilt Festival!


I hope you get to quilt today!
Suzy

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Black and White Flower #5

This flower was a bit of a challenge for me because the black piece in it was so small.   I am really enjoying adding black and white fabrics into these blocks though.

Here is the first layer.  The batik I cut this piece from is gorgeous batik with a lot of geometric variation to it.



The back of the first layer.



For the second layer I was able to add two more pieces.



And here's the back.



The final layer added the last two pieces.  I had a lot of fun fussy cutting the white piece in this flower.



And the back.  I didn't play around a whole lot with the size of the blanket stitching on this block because all the fabrics were so busy.  I tend to do larger blanket stitching on quieter fabrics and smaller stitching on busier fabrics.


I hope you get to quilt today!
Suzy

Monday, September 19, 2016

Mirror Inspiration

I'm addicted to my smart phone camera.  I use it all the time to take pictures for inspiration.  This picture was taken in the bathroom at All in Stitches (an amazing quilt shop), in Zumbrota, Minnesota.  I love the curves in the top and all the details.  It would be a fun border around and applique block.


So then what did I do?  I googled mirrors.  Holy cats!  There are thousands of possibilities, but here are just a few I found.

The first is from Pier 1.  It is totally a quilting pattern if not an applique design.  I would love to have this mirror hanging in my house!  However, my boys would smudge it up really quick and it might not be so fun to clean.


The second is from Overstock:



I'm going to have to do this again sometime!

I hope you get to quilt today!
Suzy

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Black and White Flower #4

I love this particular flower.  i think the main reason is because of how I fussy cut the black and white fabric in it.  It's also the only flower that uses three black and white prints instead of two.  Here's the first layer.  I used a larger size blanket stitch on these pieces since the fabric is pretty solid.



Adding the second layer.  If you look at the thread I used on these two new pieces you can tell that it's lighter than the fabric.  I was trying to match the dots in the print as best I could.  It's not a perfect match, but you can see that since the thread is lighter it adds some dimension to the petals.


You can tell from the back that I also used a larger stitch length for these petals.  I did this on purpose to highlight the thread and make it really visible.


Okay, this picture was definitely taken in a weird light.  Oops.  Third layer is complete.  It's the same fabric as the bottom 2 petals.



Here's the fun part!  Do you see the three large petals at the bottom!  Those were cut from a fabric that had circles of the little white shapes.  The black at the bottom of the petals is part of the fabric, not an extra piece.  I love to fussy cut fabric.


I decided to use a consistently small (1.8 mm) stitch length on all the black and white pieces so you can really see the fabrics.  One thing I did discover along this process was that sometimes as the needle pierced the black part of the fabric you could see the white from the back of the fabric peeking through.  I find this frustrating.  Fortunately, since it's black, I just colored over it with a sharpie, no problem.  However, this is probably the main reason I use batiks instead of prints most of the time when I'm appliqueing.
.

And the final flower!  It was really fun fussy cutting those pink rectangles so that they were standing upright correctly in the flower.


You can see that I also used a large size blanket stitch on these pieces.  I did this because I like the look, but also because I realized the further into the piece I stitched, the less layers I was catching underneath which made it a little easier.


I hope you get to quilt today!
Suzy