Community Quilt 156

27 07 2014

I loved the colours of this quilt! The aqua and black and white were so fresh and crisp, and set off perfectly by the plain black backing fabric.

With the colours and the wavy blocks, my first thought was to quilt it with parallel lines (with curved ends) emulating water, then I thought perhaps large bubbles (as in breaking waves), but decided on large spirals to emulate waves and water turbulence as I was on a deadline to finish this one and needed to quilt it with something that was big and that covered a lot of area fairly quickly.

It was a big quilt, so I used my bungee cord system to reduce drag and the weight of the quilt when moving it under the needle.

It took about 2 hours to stitch in the ditch around each block first, then about another 2 hours to do the spirals.

(Click on a photo to view it larger)

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Threads used:

  • Top: Fil-Tec Glide ‘Mint’ (40 wt, trilobal polyester, colour #60345)
  • Bottom: Fil-Tec Magna Glide pre-wound bobbin (black)
  • Needle: Size 18

Photos of all the Community Quilts I’ve quilted are here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhondamadeit/sets/72157630291250200/





Community Quilt 155

20 07 2014

This large quilt was unusual in that it was made up of 9 large rectangles of fabric divided by white sashing strips. From the ‘hand’ of the fabric, I suspect the rectangles were screen printed. I liked the almost Japanese feel of the fabric, with the indigo and the stylised chrysanthemums (that’s what I saw, anyway;-) It was quite a large quilt.

How to quilt it? I had some thoughts when I first saw it — perhaps uneven parallel lines almost like a tartan? Perhaps large circles or wreaths? My thoughts on this waxed and waned, but what didn’t change was my idea to quilt it using fluoro (neon) thread. I auditioned a few threads against the fabric, and while I quite liked fluoro orange against the dark blue, I decided to try something different and blend a fluoro lime green and fluoro pink! I’ve only stitched with two threads once before, and I was a bit hesitant as the weight of the combined threads through the needle eye might cause shredding or breakages. But I worried needlessly — the two threads I chose worked PERFECTLY through the size 18 needle I used, and I didn’t have a single thread issue across the whole quilt.

As far as the quilt motif went, I decided to follow the organic roundness of the flowers (or are they fireworks?) and do a mostly rounded motif, with some ‘flames’ scattered between. In the end I did lots of spirals, segueing into flames and/or bubbles. I really liked how the threads played together — despite them being fluoro pink and lime green, the overall effect is a sort of thick yellow, and it’s only when you get close that you can see the different threads weaving around each other.

One final thing — if you’re ever handing off your quilts for someone else to quilt (or if you’re going to quilt them yourself) PLEASE make sure that ALL pins are removed from inside the quilt layers. I ran over a small safety pin a couple of times and was just very lucky that I didn’t break a needle, jam the needle in the bobbin case, and/or throw the timing out on my machine. Had the timing been thrown out, it would have cost me a 4-hour round trip to the city plus about $50 to $100 to get it fixed!! That’s one expensive safety pin!

(Click on a photo to view it larger)

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The back:

 

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The tiny safety pin that I missed, which was buried inside the quilt layers:

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Threads used:

  • Top: Both Isacord 40 wt threads — colours 1940 and 6010
  • Bottom: Fil-Tec Magna Glide pre-wound bobbin (60 wt, white)

Photos of all the Community Quilts I’ve quilted are here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhondamadeit/sets/72157630291250200/





Community Quilt 154

14 07 2014

I quilted four Community Quilts on my quilting retreat weekend last weekend. I didn’t keep track of the threads I used, so unlike the others I’ve documented, you won’t get thread choices in these posts.

What a pretty quilt this was! Navy and yellows just go so well together. There was a lot of work in this quilt, and like #152, it just cried out for different quilting motifs in each block.

As usual, I started by stitching in the ditch around each block, then around each appliqued piece. Once that was done (yes, it took a few hours…), I tackled each block separately, deciding on one or more quilting motifs to stitch in it. I did all the navy blue stitching first, then the stitching with the yellow thread.

(Click on a photo to view it larger)

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Photos of all the Community Quilts I’ve quilted are here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhondamadeit/sets/72157630291250200/





Community Quilt 152

14 07 2014

I quilted four Community Quilts on my quilting retreat weekend last weekend. I didn’t keep track of the threads I used, so unlike the others I’ve documented, you won’t get thread choices in these posts.

This quilt just screamed out for different quilting motifs in each block, so that’s what I did! I stitched in the ditch around each block first, and around the appliqued centres, before stitching a different rounded motif in each block.

I did a large meandering stipple in the outer border in a variegated thread that blended with the fabric.

(Click on a photo to view it larger)

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Back:

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Photos of all the Community Quilts I’ve quilted are here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhondamadeit/sets/72157630291250200/





Community Quilt 151

14 07 2014

I quilted four Community Quilts on my quilting retreat weekend last weekend. I didn’t keep track of the threads I used, so unlike the others I’ve documented, you won’t get thread choices in these posts.

This first one had lots of hearts in each block forming a central star-like shape. I stitched in the ditch around all the blocks and borders first, then around the hearts to stabilise the quilt, then echoed around the hearts to make them ‘pop’ from any decorative stitching. I then free motion stitched ‘straight’ lines in the centres of the stars, and in the very busy floral fabric sashing strips (with a spiral at each central part where they joined). I left the solid yellow and green borders in each block free of stitching. Finally, I stitched large spirals in the border fabric.

(Click on a photo to view it larger)

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Back:

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Photos of all the Community Quilts I’ve quilted are here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhondamadeit/sets/72157630291250200/





Community Quilt 150

29 06 2014

I called this one ‘Quivering Butterflies’!

I started by stitching in the ditch around each butterfly block (inside and out), around the border, then around each appliqued butterfly to stabilise the quilt. Next, I echo quilted around each butterfly, giving a quivering, shaking, scared effect ;-)

As the floral fabric was so ‘busy’, I just did a large meandering stipple in that area, followed by a simple straight line echoing the edge of the border.

It took about 3 hours to quilt this quilt — I was able to really speed along (70% speed on my Sweet Sixteen) in the meandering stipple as I have a lot of ‘muscle memory’ for this motif.

(Click on a photo to view it larger)

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Threads used:

  • Top: Wonderfil Deco-Bob tan thread for stitching in the ditch (80 wt, colour DB 414); Fil-Tec Glide ‘Cornflower’ (40 wt, trilobal polyester, colour 80120)
  • Bottom: Fil-Tec Magna Glide Classic pre-wound bobbin (white)

Photos of all the Community Quilts I’ve quilted are here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhondamadeit/sets/72157630291250200/





Community Quilt 149

22 06 2014

Every appliqued centre of this quilt was a ‘B’ word. My favourite was the banksia; I wasn’t quite sure about the very hairy baby in the bathtub!

How to quilt it? I started by stitching in the ditch around all the blocks, then around the appliqued pieces, then echo stitched about a quarter inch around each appliqued object/set.

I decided to do largish motifs in each block — I still wanted this quilt to have some puffiness. Finally, I switched to a blue thread and stitched deliberately wobbly lines along the sashing, with spirals in the corners and joins.

For this one I used quite fine thread — an 80 wt and a 100 wt in the top (with a 70 needle), and a 60 wt in the bobbin.

(Click on a photo to view it larger)

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Back:

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Threads used:

  • Top: Wonderfil Deco Bob (80 wt, colour DB112); Wonderfil Invisifil (100 wt, colour IF311)
  • Bottom: Fil-Tec Magna Glide pre-wound bobbin (white)

Photos of all the Community Quilts I’ve quilted are here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhondamadeit/sets/72157630291250200/





Community Quilt 148

7 06 2014

I thought Quilt #146 was my challenge quilt in the latest bunch. Not so. It was this one!!

Why was it such a challenge? Well, it was FULL of bias edges, very thick seam joins, and lots of puffiness as a result of those bias edges. I had to do a LOT of quilting on it to try to flatten it, and I think I succeeded, for the most part. However, there are still parts of this quilt that have pleats and folds that I just couldn’t get out. And where the big circular blocks join, there are masses of seams that come together to form a big lump — having already snapped a needle off in the bobbin case before (which cost me $$ to have fixed as well as a trip to the city), I wasn’t going to attempt to sew through those. Someone has carefully appliqued on little circular disks into the centres of the other seam joins, and I’ll be suggesting that they add more where those horrible lumpy seam joins are.

I started by stitching in the ditch are all the circles and the borders to stabilise the quilt as far as possible. Then I tackled the centres of each circle inside a larger circle by curving out to a point and back in, making flower petals. For the larger circles, I did the same, dividing (with my eye) each inner area into thirds, stitching up to an outer point then back down then up to the centre point of the curve, then down and back up to a seam point.

After stitching the big flower petals like this, they were still too puffy, so I stitched some inner ‘flame’ sort of thing inside each one, then did some echo stitching around the big petals. That squashed them for the most part.

For the areas outside the circles, I just did some echo stitching in a continuous-line spiral. I left the pink borders unstitched. For the main white border, I continued the theme of the curved petals (no markings or rulers — just eyeballed them) then echo stitched around each one.

The first set of pictures below show the finished quilt, followed by pictures showing the puffiness I had to deal with in this quilt. Yes, it WAS a challenge and half!

(Click on a photo to view it larger)

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Puffiness:

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Puffy, puffy, puffy…

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Seam join with about 8 seams coming together. Very lumpy.

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Stitching some puffiness into submission, but some of these folds were just unavoidable

Threads used:

  • Top: Fil-Tec Magna Glide pre-wound bobbin (white)
  • Bottom: Fil-Tec Magna Glide pre-wound bobbin (white)

Photos of all the Community Quilts I’ve quilted are here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhondamadeit/sets/72157630291250200/





Community Quilt 147

3 06 2014

What a bright, vibrant kaleidoscope/stack-and-whack quilt! (and the back is even brighter!) But how to quilt it? All those colours, those designs in the fabrics, those triangular shapes…

First, I stitched in the ditch around the central black banner and all the borders. Then I laid some clear plastic over one of the motifs in the banner and drew a couple of ideas before committing to stitching them. My initial thought was to do a stylised flower pattern with squared off petals, echoing the stitching lines and the overall shape of each hexagon, but then I moved the plastic a tad and saw that I could do the same but off-centre, thus ‘cutting’ the seam lines with the straight top of each petal (see the second photo for what I mean — it shows it better than I can describe it). As each centre was full of seams, I wanted to avoid stitching there (I’ve had a needle break doing that and it wasn’t pretty… or cheap to fix!), so instead of stitching in to the centre of each ‘flower’ I left a gap to give the illusion of a centre.

I stitched the ‘flowers’ in the central banner first, in black, but I was having trouble with that thread breaking all the time, so I switched to one of the other threads I’d chosen — a deep pink/cerise Isacord thread, which gave me NO trouble at all for the rest of the quilt. I stitched all the flowers in the main quilt top and the black areas and the border with this thread and it went through my machine like a hot knife through butter. Where possible I also stitched in the ditch with this pink thread in the main areas to get from one hexagon to the next without stopping.

All stitching was free motion (except for the straight stitch-in-the-ditch lines when I used my Line Tamer ruler), so some of the flowers in the black areas and the borders have 5 petals, some have 6, others 7 or 8.

For the border, I stitched a half flower of the motif I used in the main quilt, again using free motion (no rulers or markings).

(Click on a photo to view it larger)

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Back:

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Threads used:

  • Top: Isacord (40 wt trilobal polyester, colour 2508); and Robison-Anton (40 wt rayon, colour 2632 ‘Jet Black’)
  • Bottom: Bobbinfil (70 wt cotton, black)

Photos of all the Community Quilts I’ve quilted are here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhondamadeit/sets/72157630291250200/





Community Quilt 146

3 06 2014

I was told when I picked up these Community Quilts for quilting that there was a ‘challenge’ quilt amongst them. I have a feeling this might have been it. Why? because someone had started quilting it (the long straight lines extending from the blocks into the borders) and had marked big circles randomly across the quilt, ready for quilting.

On pulling this one out of the bag, my first thought was to quilt it in yellow to set off the grey in the uneven width borders and to echo the yellow in the sashing strips (only on 3 sides). My second thought was to quilt the ‘white space’ in the borders with more circles (or pebbles or bubbles, or whatever you want to call them). I wasn’t quite sure what to do in the main top where the busy fabrics were.

I started by stitching around each of the circles, then free motion stitching an echo circle about one quarter inch in from the marked circle I’d just stitched. Then I continued stitching a wavy matrix inside each circle, leaving the gap between the two lines of circle stitching to act as a slightly puffy border. Even though my inner circle line wasn’t always exact (i didn’t mark it or use a ruler), with the extra stitching I don’t think it matters too much.

After I finished stitching all the circles and their centres, I had decided to do a simple all-over motif for the gaps between the circles in the very busy fabric of the main part of the quilt top. To echo the circular motif, I stitched a squared-off-end version of my ‘open headband‘ motif across all the open areas. And then I stitched circles/bubbles/pebbles in the open areas of the grey borders.

I liked the overall effect, especially the yellow thread against the grey fabric.

(Click on a photo to view it larger)

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Back:

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Threads used:

  • Top: Mettler Poly Sheen (40 wt polyester, color 0706 [bright yellow]) and when that ran out, Fil-Tec ‘Glide’ (40 wt trilobal polyester, colour 80116 ‘Mango’)
  • Bottom: Can’t remember, but likely a Wonderfil Invisifil (100 wt) in a dark brown thread.

Photos of all the Community Quilts I’ve quilted are here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhondamadeit/sets/72157630291250200/








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