Applique Today

This is my first time using one of Lori Smith’s applique patterns. The directions are simple and well numbered. I was introduced to her work through the applique class I’m taking at the LQS. It is a great pattern to learn many of the skills needed in applique…as I’m finding out! IMG_5265.jpg

The pattern encourages scrap usage and to date I haven’t used any new fabric. We used bias bars to make the stems and these helped make the stems bendy, easier to apply on. Glue was recommended to keep the stems in place, but since I am on the go and recently learned the joys of basting, I decided to baste the stems on. I’m saving most of my pennies, and glue feels like something I could run to pick up if I was screaming for it, but am glad not to buy right now!

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To make circles close to perfect (mine aren’t perfect!) we utilized Karen Kay Buckley’s Perfect Circles. The O-ring to hold all the circles is included, and I love that! Not only are my circles better than anticipated, but each one looks like a sweet little flower while awaiting application.

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I worked on Carolyn Friedlander’s Arcs all week. What I appreciate about this pattern is how dynamic the arcs are despite being a simple shape. I learned a lot about tucking under and securing corners.

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This is all scrap fabric I had from other projects. The raspberry fabric in the middle row almost had me cutting out new arcs, but I decided to roll with it. This project still has a lot more to be added, and the colors can be balanced. Thread color is going to be crucial.

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Other exciting things have been going on here too. I’ve been drawing a lot and am thinking about ordering some supplies to make printed fabric by hand. Any tips? Has any one worked on making fabric?

What are you working on?

Applique Away

After a week of figuring out some technology–hello, YouTube!–the computer is free for roaming. The snow has been beautiful. Everything is quiet and the cars move slowly along. The sunrise colors are delicate here. IMG_5120.jpg

Post Card Party Swap is a fantastic way to share small quilted pieces with other knitters and totally hits all my favorite categories: mail, pen-pals, quilting, and applique. The LQS offers classes with postcard ideas and this was a class I joined that used wool. It was my first time doing wool applique, and I love how textured and sturdy wool is to work with. When the snow began to fall, I decided to hand quilt circles as the background, enjoying it so much I worked on it until I finished.  Hand-stitching is calming, centering, and adds a beautiful finish to this little postcard!

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Practice makes for more experience and so out came the scrap bag and the rotary cutter, and I cut out six more hearts to applique. The squares are sevens inches by seven inches and the heart is a basic template. Since I’ll always have scraps about this size I plan on collecting at least one heart from each piece of fabric from here on out. When there are enough of appliqued I will make a quilt. Right now eleven appliqued hearts exist. IMG_5161.jpgIMG_5170.jpgIMG_5173.jpg

Savor Each Stitch arrived and it is a wonderfully written book with clear explanations. The first project is cut and ready to be basted. Basting, I’ve just learned after pinning ten hearts, is much easier to work with when doing needle-turn applique. What I particularly liked about basting is how smoothly the round edges turned under. It was a revelation to me, because the pinning seemed to cause distortion overall, but the basting kept all in place! Looking forward to moving ahead with this project. IMG_5154.jpg

Everyone is posting such lovely work! Thanks for stopping by and checking out the blog.

 

 

Appliqué Thursday

I’m in Appliqué class, it’s my first time trying it & I’m smitten! Appliqué, as I’ve just learned, has a great blend of preparation & ease of carrying. There’re lots of ideas coming to my mind (lion, fish, stars, mermaids), because I can appliqué anything I can draw! Doodling is great for releasing my mind & allowing new ideas to form without interruption, so now the doodles have a new home.

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At first I found the stitching & using my needle a little awkward. After the second heart, I was totally engrossed in the process of tucking in the fabric & not pulling too tight. What I enjoy about hand stitching is that it will never be perfect (for me), but there is a consistent rhythm that develops & I love that feeling.

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I admire many people working with appliqué & ordered Savor Each Stitch by Carolyn Friedlander (her work inspired me to start sewing regularly again).

Whose work do you like? What are you appliquéing on this snowy day? IMG_4986

 

Snail Mail Friday!

Receiving mail is thrilling! Writing letters to my friends & family is one of my hobbies & I love having return mail. At nine I signed up for a pen-pal program & was given a writing friend located in Canada; we exchanged letters until age thirteen. Now I exchange letters with friends & cousins, but I also love to receive packages of fabric in the mail too!

Today some fabric arrived for future quilts & bags I’m planning to make. I ordered some of Lizzy House’s Natural History, Carolyn Friedlander’s Carkai & two more slices of Honeymoon from Sarah Watts. All of the prints are incredible, inspiring, & ready to be made in to something!

What are you working on this weekend? Receive any exciting mail? IMG_4915.jpg

Greeting Card Tutorial: Upcycling Scraps & Notecards

I needed a card yesterday. The store’s cards were okay & nice, but lacked a personal touch. After assessing materials in house, I decided to use 5″ x 7″ lined notecards & scraps from the just finished half-squre triangle quilt to make a greeting card.

Materials: 

  • Scissors
  • Hand-sewing needle
  • Thread
  • Pins
  • 5″ x 7″ Lined Notecard
  • Fabric scraps
  • Sewing Machine
  • Imagination!

 

Step One: Grab fabric scraps & see what ideas come to mind. What shapes do you like? Cut those shapes out of the fabric!

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Step Two: Pin shapes on a piece of fabric & thread a hand-sewing needle. IMG_4812.jpgIMG_4813.jpg

Step Three: Sew the shape on to the fabric. I used a straight stitch here. IMG_4817IMG_4819

Step Four: Place fabric on the notecard & decide how the card should be folded. I creased the card hamburger style. IMG_4823.jpg

Step Five: Adjust stitch length & sew fabric on to the card. IMG_4827IMG_4826

Step Six: Enjoy & make more! IMG_4838.jpgIMG_4839.jpg

Thanks for reading & hope you enjoy making some cards!