Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Lacy clouds part II

I wanted more clouds. As it is allowed to add stuff outside the challenge package, I decided to use cheesecloth to create more clouds. I got this idea from the wonderful book by Judith Baker Montano: "Free-form embroidery".

I folded the cheesecloth double to form a solid edge.
After some manipulating and sewing I got this result.

More clouds.

The sky was very blue, too blue. To tone it down I added a densely woven transparent  fabric. I tried tulle first, but I felt the texture was too plain. 
The misty result will create an impression of distance. I think that will become more clear when the rest of the landscape is appliqued. 

All about the "Message in a bottle challenge" can be found here.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Lacy clouds part I

The top fabric is supposed to be the sky, the two at the bottom the sea.
I don't like the combination of the sky blue and the sea green.

Clouds can act as a nice division. Fortunately the challenge packet contains a lace motive.
This motive is perfect for clouds.


I cut the motive apart, used fray stop for the cut ends,

..and rearranged them, then sewed them on.

Finished clouds.

All about the "Message in a bottle challenge" can be found here.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Introducing a new project: Message in a bottle

Last November at Crazy Quilting Supplies a challenge was announced:
Message in a bottle.
I couldn't resist and signed up.
All information about this challenge can be found here.
This project will also be submitted to CQJP 2013.

I ordered the challenge packet: 14 fancy fabrics,

lace, ribbons, trim, beads, charms, pearl coton 8, interfacing, an unusual fabric (empty) bottle charm (in the red oval).
Everything in the packet must be visible on the challenge piece.

This is the rough plan: sky, sea, mountains, beach.
The bottle (without a message) of course is washed ashore among driftwood.
The canvas measures 27 x 35 cm, that is 945 square cm. This means the size of four blocks as the minimum size of a CQJP block is 225 square cm.
I will work this piece as one large block which can count for four months.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Finished CQJP 2012: Crazy Violets

Crazy Violets
Click right and choose open in new window to enlarge the photo.

To flatten all the seams at the back I stitched them down with herringbone stitch.
Sharon at Pintangle has written a series of posts about "How to assemble a Crazy Quilt". I followed more or less her instructions.
Allie Aller wrote about finishing a crazy quilt in CQmagonline.

Next I ironed on a medium weight interface (vilene).
Then I layered on the back: batting (left) and a cotton fabric (middle) for the back
The fabric on the right is upholstery fabric which I used for the false back.

I pinned the quilt, batting and back together and started tying the quilt sandwich. 
No stitches are visible at the front because all stitches are hidden behind the embellishments.

Next I attached the false back by sewing on six buttons at the intersections of four blocks at the front. No stitches are visible at the front, they are hidden in seams or behind embellishments.
Than I sewed on a hanging sleeve and the binding. 
I followed the instructions from the book "A-Z of quilting". 
Online I found a tutorials on a hanging sleeve here and on adding the binding here and here.

I thought a strip used to hold a poster could act as a rod.
One strip didn't, two strips didn't either because they bent too much

Then I tried a flat wooden slat with two pushpins to secure the cord.
The board turned over a bit so the quilt didn't hang flat.

When the pushpins are secured at the top of the board the quilt hangs best.

This is the end of my journey on creating a complete crazy quilt.
The Crazy Violets Quilt found a spot on a wall in our living room.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Final embellishments part II

When I embroidered these cast-on violets, I wanted to expand them to the block below when the blocks were sewed together.

Here they are.

There was a problem with the "floating" basket. I got different comments on how to solve it.
I decided to use some fallen flowers.

The seam is covered with a fly stitch branch.

Another empty seam.

Magic chain stitch, another catch up TAST stitch.
I used a slightly lighter orange thread than the orange patch and a slightly darker yellow thread than the yellow patch.


After....I just expanded the existing lacy flower spray.

Cretan stitch seam treatment in purple.

A combination of chain stitches and straight stitches with sparkling Kreinik #4.

The right part of this seam beneath the lace needs something more than a little stitching.

I decided on a ribbon with sparkles along the purple fabric. The transition below the lace is now less abruptly.
Along the left are buttonhole stitches. A butterfly charm hides the intersection.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Final embellishments part I

All twelve blocks are sewed together. The "new" seams need some embellishments as I want the whole quilt to look as a unity.

First I embroidered the seams with Wheatear stitch. Next  I sewed on a lace flower to cover the intersection. 
Wheatear stitch is a  catchup TAST stitch. I used two threads DMC floss in different colors to match the fabrics.

The horizontal middle seam is covered with open chain stitch. Here is how this stitch is done.

Next intersection.

A ribbon is sewed on, a ribbon flower at the right and a lace butterfly.

I added two flower beads and a few orange french knots. These additions make the blocks blend.

That "half" branch in the middle left looks chopped of.

I added another ribbon with tufts and more little lace flowers.

Next I will fill the emptiness above the new added ribbon.

The orange flowers are expanded to the blocks nearby.

A simple herringbone stitch.

Fern stitches with a variegated thread.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

December block: finished

This is just a simple chain stitch with a variegated thread. 
I love its delicateness.

I completed the bunch of pansies with a stem stitch branch and lace leaves.
I cut the leaves from a larger piece of lace and sewed them on.
The orange lace butterfly looks better than the tatted one I talked about before.

On the seam of yellow patch I embroidered Cretan stitches, on the seam of the purple one Buttonhole stitches.
The flower spray at the top are berry stitches, I posted about it here.

I wasn't happy with the lace butterfly after all. It didn't soothe the orange as much as I wanted.
So off goes the butterfly. On go some gathered ribbon flowers. I'm sorry I forgot to take step-by-step pictures. I made a drawing though, which is below. These flowers are also from the book Ribbonwork Gardens by Christen Brown.

The red dotted line indicates the running stitches. At the blue arrows the thread is looped over the edge. Pull the thread and stitch next to the knot. Of course the knot is made a little from the edge. Match both triangles at the ends and fasten them.

The lilac ready made butterfly had a relief in the wings. This asked for silver metallic fly stitches to create the veins.

The last addition are the lilac flower beads at the bottom. Their color matches exactly the lilac fabric on the right.

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