I learned that I often imagine things being a lot harder than they turn out to be. I have been dragging my feet for two years on this top because I was so dreading puttting it together.
I had referenced this quilt in that thread and sent out pattern kits to everyone who asked for them, but I finally got around to piecing the main part of the top, and I finished it, today! It *was* a pain in the neck but it wasn't nearly as hard as I anticipated! :)
You can see stages of the top in progress and sort of how I mixed the sizes of blocks in my flickr account: http://www.flickr.com/photos/thepolyparrot/sets/72157627457611250/ - I included one picture exported from Electric Quilt so you can see where I deviated from the plan. It was kind of like puttting together a puzzle because of the differently sized blocks.
The quilt is called "Bubbles." I used 1930's repros mixed with white on white and white on natural prints and I mixed bits of traditional layout almost willy-nilly to get a modern look. I'm going to baste it tomorrow and hopefully have it done in another week. After I quilt the main area, I will serge the edges of the quilt and put on the borders, which are in a traditional layout.
Right now, the quilt is 90" square and when it's done, it will be 103". :)
Bravo! I think many time "we" make things harder than they actually are. I know I sure do. I have seen that pattern and do believe it is in my "to do" notebook. Love the 30's prints-----but then I love anything using those prints. They just keep calling my name. Great job!!!
Thank you! I spent yesterday basting it and the Civil War Double 9-Patch & Star. I'm hoping to have Bubbles quilted and ready for borders in a couple or three days.
This makeshift table saves my life - sawhorses, 2x4's and two sheets of OSB plywood split lengthwise to make them more handle-able.
I usually wait until I have a batch of quilts to baste before I set it up, because it's kind of a pain. I make sheepeyes at my magic heavy-stuff-totin' angel and he pulls it all in from the garage and sets it up. You can see, I can barely get around the sides. I get as many quilts basted and marked as possible, then *poof,* my magic heavy-stuff-totin' angel puts it all away again.
I LOVB the bubbles. I usually don't like the 30s re-pro fabrics but in this they are lovely.
I see Bubbles in my future. I bought a nifty curve piecing gizmo and never get around to using it. THis may get me motivated.
I want to see that "table" without a quilt on it!!! I know you have talked about it before, maybe even showed us a photo??? but when you take the quilt off, can you show us ?????
I use a few of those white fold up tables, side by side, if I need that large, or for smaller quilts I use just one table, but I am finding it is harder and harder for me to work the clamps I use to keep fabrics attached to table...would be much easier to be able to use those clips!!!!
ABSOLUTELY GORGEOUS QUILTS !!!!! yes I "yelled" so excited at the beauty!!!!
Well, my magic heavy-stuff-totin' angel just left yesterday on deployment, so rather than wait two months to set it up again, I drew this sketch and hope it gives you the idea. The perspective is all off, but I think you can see how simple it is. :)
I don't usually use many clips - I use some binder clips along one edge so that I can go around to the other side and pull the backing taut.
But, I find that the OSB is so rough that it grabs the fabric and holds it for me.
Then I align one corner and two edges of the batt and pull it smooth, then the top. I start basting in the center of one side, working from the center to the left and then back to the center and working right. Then I do another "row" of basting a few inches farther away from me, again starting in the center and working left and then starting back in the center and working right.
When the area within a comfortable reach has been basted, I fold the quilt in 5-6" folds and pull the whole thing toward me, aligning the edge of the fold with the edge of the table and pulling the quilt taut on all sides.
Then I baste everything within a comfortable reach again. I use either the tagging gun, curved safety pins or straight pins with Pinmoors. :)
My face is beet red from all the compliments - thank you so much! :)
I finished making the borders for Bubbles and today I got my quilting space all set up and ready to go for tomorrow night.
I used a tagging gun with a fine point and very fine tags to baste these two. I have used basting spray, but I don't think I will ever use it again. I had a bunch of vintage quilt tops that I'd bought on eBay and the last time I set up my table, I did a whole batch of quilts - several of them with spray.
Unfortunately, the spray has remained sticky in two of them and quilting them is impossible. The machine skips more stitches than it hits. :( I've tried everything and only cleaning the needle every 20-30 stitches enables me to sew at all. I have the quilts hanging over the balcony (indoors) and I keep trying every few weeks to get some quilting done, but the needle still gums up right away. I have tried ironing the quilt on both sides, even, but I think they're ruined. :( I have one last trick up my sleeve but if that doesn't work, I will have to remove all the stitching and replace the batts. This basting was done with 505 and June Tailor brands, but I don't think brand makes a difference - I've tried a couple of other brands and the stickiness is unpredictable. I should have tested.
The CurveMaster foot makes an incredible difference in the speed of piecing Drunkard's Path (or any curved) blocks. I started off piecing by hand, then went to a vintage short-toed quilting foot then to the CurveMaster. I can do eight or ten blocks in the same time as one hand-pieced and I can do two or three blocks in the same time as one block with the vintage quilting foot.
The quilts are only scraps because there are so many fabrics - several hundred different fabrics in the Civil War quilt and around 80 in Bubbles. They started mainly with fat quarters, layer cakes and charm packs, with the light backgrounds in yardage. I used maybe 20 different white on white and white on natural in Bubbles and the CW double 9-patch has maybe 20 shirtings, aged muslin and Moda neutrals.
I hope I answered all the questions. :)
Oops, I'm sorry - I missed one - I do all my quilting on either my 1947 Singer Model 15 or on my 1972 Kenmore 1803. :)
There is definately a difference is basting sprays. We only use Sullivans in the pink labeled can. About $13.00 at Hancocks. We have made 100's of quilts using it. A very small amount will hold for several months and it washes right out.
The small blocks are 3½" and the large are 6½" - and it would be perfect for scraps! :)
Thanks again for the nice comments.
I'm pondering the quilting, now - I'm leaning toward white thread front and back, but I have a large number of variegated 40wt equivalent polyester thread and I'm thinking that it might be pretty to do it with all these colors, too. On the other hand, the top is soooooooo scrappy looking that I think it might need the one color of quilting thread to tie it all together.
the diagram is fantastic!! thanks you sew very much ^_^
I use basting spray too, and I love it!!! have not used a pin since I tried it !! could not tell you the name off the top of my head, I get it a t Joannes, it is not the most expensive one, and not the cheapest one either...
I have sprayed a quilt, and then stitched it right away, and also sprayed a quilt and have had it sit for months, and not had any trouble...sew sorry you are having problems with yours :(
I love variegated threads so that would probably be my choice, but all white would go very well with the "vintage" feel...
2 month deployment ?? not anywhere "bad" I hope (((((((((((((((((( Elizabeth ))))))))))))))))))))
I don't hand quilt so I'm no help here. What we do is to put 2 or 3 banquet tables together. We then use masking tape to hold the backing (right side down) taut. We next layer the batting ( Warm and Natural or Warm and White) fold back (halfway) the top and the batting, then lightly spray the backing and smooth the batting down. We then spray the batting and smooth the top down. Repeat for the other half. Be sure everything has been ironed and that selveges have been removed. Most of our quilting is done using either stitch in the ditch or serpentine stitch. I occasionally will use my embroidery machine and use a hoop. This method works well with the baby quilts for the hospital and the charity quilts that are used on twin or double beds. We haven't done any king size with this method.
I'm against polyester thread for quilting. The poly is "sharper" and can wear the fabric more than a cotton thread will. I always quilt w/100% cotton thread.
There are some pastel varigateds that would look nice. I'd avoid a varigated with bright colors or a short repeat.
Try off-white as opposed to white. It gives a softer feel.
Check the threading and tension often while you're quilting!
I had finished quilting the main part of Bubbles and when I flipped it over to look at the back, I had a 1' x 4' swath where the upper tension was too loose. When I got done crying, it took a full day to get all of that unsewn. ;)
It could have been a lot worse and I'm grateful that it wasn't, but it could have been avoided entirely if I had just kept watch on my upper threading. If the thread isn't seated between the disks on the tensioner, the tensioner isn't doing a dad-blamed thing to that thread. :D
Used the basting spray for the first time.
Well maybe should have done it out side...It got on the hardwood floors :(
But it seems to be holding up on the quilt just fine.
I am hand quilting on the go no hoop or frames.
We shall see if I like the out come.
Laura, just a small piece of advice from lesson learned...if it is a small piece that you are hand quilting it should work ok with just the spray basting...but if hand quilting a wall hanging or lap quilt use also basting pins to adition with the spray basting.
I learned the hard way that the backing still will shift oh so slightly with just the spray with each row of the shadow quilting I did on my sunflower wall hanging. I think it was because like you I did not use a hoop or frame and the handling/gathering moved the backing fabric (had backing fabric and batting 1" bigger then quilt). So at about 3/4 finished I took all the stitching out and started over with basting pins and spray basting and it worked out perfectly...no shifting at all.
But then again...maybe it will work for you without the pins...maybe it was just the way I manhandled the fabric...lol
I learned (day before yesterday, really) that even fairly dull rotary cutters can cut into the tip of a pinky finger and into the nail, if the cutter jumps the ruler . . . I also learned at that time that I really can keep from swearing at sudden pain when my kids are in the room. It really didn't turn out to be a deep cut at all - although it did get about 1/8 into the nail. The worst part of it today - even though I trimmed the nail as short as I could, was that the cut edges kept catching on things, bending the nail back on that half of the cut. I'm wondering if clear nail polish wouldn't help protect that a little . . .
Nicole, you can also make a "patch" that will help. Wet down a tea bag and cut it to fit your entire nail. Put a layer of nail polish down, then the tea bag THEN several more layers of polish. That will help you grow it out until you can trim away the cut area after it grows out.
The patch Pat suggested helped alot today! Thanks Pat! I was looking at the cut today at work, and I realized how much worse it could have been. The cut was not deep at all . . . the worst damage was the cut thru the nail, and now with the patch in place, I think I'll get thru without much discomfort.
I just don't know how I could prevent this from happening again in the future, except for wearing iron gloves, and maybe a new ruler and/or rotary blade . . .
Yes, Pat - exactly! Chain Mail gloves! That's what I need! I am going to take the patch off this weekend, then put on a new one, and do a neater job of it this time round . . . but it has been a nail saver!
Well, Barb, now you mention it . . . I did purchase a set of "quilting" gloves some time back, but have never worn. They are yellow, and have a bunch of bumps on the palm area . . . maybe to hold material still? I got them at Joann's for almost nothing with a coupon and a sale . . . maybe I will use those when cutting for now on . . . at least the gloves could take some of the brunt, at least.
I HATE wearing gloves, the only ones I are even remotely almost tolerable is the knit/latex gardening gloves. Unfortunately they are not protective enough to keep the rose thorns from making mincemeat of my hands. I react (allergic) to rose cuts and thorns. And my husband wonders why roses are HIS favorite and NOT mine??? LOL
I learned that I will need to work on patience. Yesterday after jury duty was finally over, I went to Hancock Fabrics, since their Bernina vendor has a layaway plan for their machines. I was talking to her about a basic, beginner embroidery machine . . . one where I can maybe download a design or two . . . she showed me the one that was about $1100. I asked if she had any that were more on a smaller budget, and she said they came out with a new model she didn't have yet for around $500. She gave me the model number - 580 and said they could order and put on layaway on same day. So, I came home to google it, and the cheapest I could find a Bernina 580 was about $6k.
Nicole, when I checked out the Bernina embroidery machines, they were roughly $5K... these were the ones with the bigger hoops, not just the fancy stitches, although the machine had tons of built-in stitches. I was looking them over before the owner came out, and the one machine I picked out that was for quilting/some embroidery was about $45K. I asked if she dealt in trade-ins, but she said she had a list of people already, and IF she did get any in, it would be spoken for. I can't justify that for a machine at the moment, so I just plug away on my old machine that I got in 1972...LOL One of these days, though...
I was doing ok until I got an embroidered block from Mittsy in our Charm Swap... now I'm going thru the withdrawals again... LOL
Yes, I'm thinking she got the models confused. I may go back this weekend and ask again. It's not like I can get one right away anyway, but on a layaway plan? It'd sure be easier . . . There is another place here in town that has machines . . . but this is the place that tried to sell me a $400 machine when I was looking for under $200 . . . Still, I didn't look at their embroidery machines . . .
Consider a Bernina like an Escalade (Cadillac SUV). Most of us do not drive Cadillacs. Shop around, Ebay and even Wal-Mart have some nice embroidery machines for under $400.00. My sister Mary bought a used embroidery only Brother Disney model for $350.00 just recently from EBay and my friend Fran just bought a new 4 x4 Brother embroidery machine that connects to your computer to upload designs. When I bought mine it was the previous year's demonstration floor model. That was in 2001.
Brothers seem to be very popular, and reasonable in price. I haven't gone machine shopping for awhile, so haven't kept up on the prices since I drooled over the Bernina... That day I just bought a few yds of fabric at that shop, as a treat for NOT getting a new machine.. LOL
What kind of machine are you 'driving', Mittsy? That embroidery block sure was nice...
When I get to the point where an embroidery machine becomes a necessity again, my next embroidery machine will be a Brother. The features and reliability that you get with that brand are amazing for the price.
They have one that I am particularly interested in - it is not a sewing machine, it does embroidery only.
But, it can do 5x7" designs and you can use an ordinary USB thumb drive to transfer any design to the machine. It also has some fonts built-in, including a couple of small fonts for making things like quilt labels with care instructions, where you have to write small.
walmart.com has it with free shipping to your local store for $631. I know this will fit into my budget a lot sooner than a Bernina. ;)
-SE400-Computerized-Embroidery-Machine/dp/B003AVMZA4/ref=cm_cr_pr_sims_ good price???
Came across this accidentally by loooking up Singer Futura 250 which my friend talked about today. She has this one.I wanted to see what we have in the futura. i don't like the fact that you need to use the computer in order to embroider...
Helene, I have the Futura SES1000 which is very similar to the Futura 250 and 350, but it was sold on HSN. I would not have bought this machine for half the price (heck at ANY price!) if I had known what a lot of trouble it was going to be to operate. It goes through bobbin cases like some machines go through bobbins! I will never, ever, ever buy another modern Singer!
Having to be hooked up to the computer is no issue for me - I loved the editing software that came with it - very easy to follow and very easy to tweak designs to fit perfectly, etc. It had some great features - IF they had only worked as advertised! ;)
That machine is a complete pain in the neck. I would honestly rather have the Brother SE400 even though the the 400 has FAR fewer features and less design area than the bigger Singer. (and even that is not that great a difference - the actual working area on the Singer is quite a bit less than the stated 4x4 & 5x7 design areas!)
With the Brother, I do think you have to have a card reader and PES Basic installed on your computer if you want to tweak any of the designs or if you want to put any of your downloaded designs onto a blank card or memory chip. PES Basic comes with software and an 8-in-1 card reader, if I remember correctly.
The only thing about the 400 is that 4x4 is going to be *very* limiting for some people. I wouldn't mind it so much, but the most beautiful cutwork designs (my favorite) were made for the 5x7 hoop. :( If all you're going to be doing is juvenile or floral motifs or monograms, and stuff like that, the 4x4 is plenty big)
thanks Elizabeth! I like to have choices of fonts, although I may not use them much. I figure if I'm finally going to blow some cash on a machine, there are a few extras that I would like, but not necessarily need all the time. I've seen hoop videos on Youtube, and really like the larger ones. If the machine has built ins, and takes a thumb drive for extras, that makes it worth looking into!
Kathy - gee no ( I just gave one away that came with a table. table and machine for $15.00 - it was a Singer)
I had to be in touch with a long time friend who had a stroke perhaps 7 - 8 years ago and had just bought this Futura so I wanted to learn what she may have and what it does. That's all. She is partially paralized and is tying to get back into using the machine. If I had my way "All I want is the top of the line Bernina" but I am stuck with my 2 Janomes and that's ok. And all i want is to be able to "read instructions and follow them as intended" my brain does not convey to my hands. So all I want is to be a "perfect quilter, have the perfect machine etc etc an none of that is happenening..
Helene, I looked at the Futura's also a couple years back. Joann's had them on sale and I almost bought one, but just didn't know what I wanted for sure. I would certainly love to have one of those Bernina's, but would like to have a big sewing suite first. My room is only about 10x15, but not all of that is taken up by my sewing stuff. I just need a bigger house! LOL
I'll never be perfect, but I'm sure having fun trying!
It will be months before I can get an embroidery machine, no matter the brand. It would be helpful, though, if Walmart still had layaway for those, though. I've seen the Brother SE400, there is the SQ9050 (or something like that), and then the $600 one that is also at Walmart . . . I'm going to call the Creative Sewing Center here in town and see if they have the Brother machines . . .
I learned that some things can not be repaired and you just have to move on. My dear friend, Fran had her Brother Ultimate in the repair shop. Getting the parts to repair it have become a nightmare. Over three months and no end in sight. Yesterday she purchased the new 5 x7 hoop Brother with the built in Disney. She is pretty much homebound with caring for her husband. Sewing has been her outlet and fills her life with joy. She taught me so much and we had such fun when we got together to sew. After their home was burglarized they moved closer to their son and his family. We have gotten together only a few times since they moved. Her new machine has a flash drive. She is so frustrated with the whole concept of converting her design patterns from 3 1/2" floppies to this new format. She has 10 years worth of pattern collecting.. I can relate to all this because my current machine is one year older than her Ultimate and I have a lot of 3 1/2" floppies, too. I'm currently connecting a 3/12" floppy reader to my laptop and transfering one or two patterns to disk and then taking the disk to my sewing
/embroidering machine and inserting the disk into the machine and saving it temporarily to memory.
If you have had experience in upgrading to new technology I'd like to offer Fran some help. Her new machine will not be able to stitch any pattern over 5 x 7 so those patterns will be culled.
Her old embroidery machine took floppy disks 3 1/2", her new machine takes a flash drive. Her problem is how to get the pattern from the floppy to the flash drive. She had a computer crash and bought a new laptop. It doesn't have capability to accept a 3 1/2" floppy. I tried to explain to her that she could purchase an external 3 1/2" floppy disk reader but she didn't know what I was talking about. i don't know of any other way to get it from her disks to a flash drive. Mine plugs in via a usb port. Works great with my Windows XP op sys. She has Windows 7 but it should work the same way.
I have a friend who I believe has both. I gave him my external floppy drive and I know he has USB ports and the technology. If she would want to send her floppy with a flash drive I can get it transferred for her. Please keep in mind that floppy's are unstable and the possibility exists that the data is no longer available.
I can assure her that if it is possible, he can do the job and would as a favor to me.
I finally learned how to stitch the backside of a binding project without it looking horrid. Still need to work on the mitered corners, though . . .
I had a thought . . . If I was going to get a sewing machine in the next week or so from Walmart, would it be better to wait until Black Friday? Does anyone remember if they have sales on sewing machines?
Mama has a new machine! It is a Brother . . . not the cs6000i I was looking at, but I got the ce8080prw . . . we have been going thru and trying a variety of the stitches . . . so, I'm learing about my new machine! AND it has an automatic needle threader (well, not what I'd call automatic, but it will help if I'm not wearing my glasses) .
Yippee on the new machine! These Brothers are just packed with pretty stitches, aren't they?
I think the site you're thinking of is http://daystyledesigns.com/ - Leah Day is working on 365 different filler designs for FMQ. She has a small store and a lot of free info and videos - setting up for FMQ, machine tips, etc.
I just bought a Featherweight for my collection yesterday and I'm just about ecstatic. I soaked it will fresh oil last night, so today, I can clean and wax it and get it sewing. :) Not perfect, but very nice condition. I fixed the broken cord and have to fix the wiring to the light, now. It came with a full set of attachments and bobbins and a manual and the case is in excellent shape - for $200, which is just about perfect. Okay, I'll shut up now - I'm just so excited, I can hardly sit still. ;)
This is a site with simple stencils meant for kids coloring. I use these stencils. Draw them the size I want onto white contact, cut out the shape. peel of the backing and apply to quilting area, stitch around it with any design I want. Good method,especially for small projects. contact stencil can be used more than once...
Freezer pper works too but has to be pinned down to hold up to the quilting motion...