From My Carolina Home

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Quilt of Valor – Eagle Squares

Moving on to the next Quilt of Valor, each one has been unique and interesting.  This one had foundation pieced stripes on a muslin base, alternating those squares with an eagle print.  I was concerned that the difference in weight between the squares might make quilting a challenge.  I laid it on the longarm bar to check the size of the backing and batting.  The batting is Warm and Natural all cotton.  It was nice that this piecer did a good job on her borders.

QOV Eagle Squares at From My Carolina Home

The stripes had to be precise so that they would seem to move behind the eagle print squares. Foundation piecing made sense for this. But the difference in weight between the muslin backed squares and the others was noticeable.

QOV Eagle Squares at From My Carolina Home

I loaded it on the longarm, and chose a lighter color thread than I usually choose to use.   I picked a lighter ecru color Essentials thread, with the same thread in the bobbin.

QOV Eagle Squares at From My Carolina Home

The backing fabric was a light beige, and anything dark would show every little wobble or glitch. I don’t plan to do that but it usually happens anyway. The first pass across the quilt did nicely, thank heaven no tension issues with this one.

QOV Eagle Squares at From My Carolina Home

That was a relief, as it was very apparent to me with the additional drag on the machine when I was stitching in the striped blocks. Quilting on the eagle print squares had less drag, so I tended to speed up just a tiny bit. I think the stitching does the best when I can maintain a consistent speed in movement of the machine.

QOV Eagle Squares at From My Carolina Home

Still, it really didn’t seem to matter, the stitching was good over the stripes too.  The pantograph is called Fascination by Lorien Quilting for Willow Leaf Studios, designed by Hermione Agee.

QOV Eagle Squares at From My Carolina Home

Looking at the two different blocks after quilting, side by side,  the size is pretty consistent.  The stitches get a bit longer when I am changing directions, so I adjusted the cruise to a higher speed to compensate.

QOV Eagle Squares at From My Carolina Home

Going over the borders, the thread color blended well.

QOV Eagle Squares at From My Carolina Home

The seams where the corners joined had some excess bulk due to the extra muslin layer. It would have been better to clip out some of this excess muslin before sending it for quilting. But, I just tried to do my best.  Here you can see the rounded seam and a bit of gathering in the blue on the left.

QOV Eagle Squares at From My Carolina Home

Most of the time I was lucky and the stitching line on the pantograph went around the point where there was extra bulk.

QOV Eagle Squares at From My Carolina Home

But you can see how the extra fabric in the seam allowance makes that point pop up a bit where four blocks come together.

QOV Eagle Squares at From My Carolina Home

It quilted quickly, and I trimmed it before folding it up to add to the shipment back to the guild.

QOV Eagle Squares at From My Carolina Home

As usual, I learn something with every quilt. This one taught me that differences in block weight didn’t make a difference in the stitches, but I should trim excess foundation from the joining seams where possible. I have a couple of friends with longarm machines helping me with these, but I still have several more to show you. I’ll get to most of them between the end of August and through September. I am working on doing another Autumn Jubilee in October, and I already have some fantastic plans in the works. More on that later!

What are you working on? Have you ever done a quilt with foundation piecing?

 

My blog is about a variety of topics, quilting and sewing, crafting and cooking, reading and travel, mountain living and gardening, and more.  I have lots of free patterns for quilters, mystery quilt alongs, holiday quilt alongs, and seasonal events with giveaways.  Please follow me for all the fun!  New projects coming up!!  I do new tutorials and patterns quite often, along with a variety of other subjects on my blog. I would like to invite you to follow if you want, by using the sidebar buttons for your favorite blog reader, or enter your email to follow via email. I post usually about 4 times a week, not excessively. My annual Autumn Jubilee is coming up in October, and I’ll have a lot of new things to show, projects to do, a quilt along and giveaways.

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Be My Neighbor – Quilting the Beast

After the flimsy was done, I measured the quilt.  It came out at 70 x 96 inches, quite the beast!  So now the decision was how to quilt it.  From the beginning, I wanted to do a cloud fill in the sky parts, and individual motifs and designs on each house.  I needed to decide as it affects the way it is loaded on the longarm, custom quilting gets loaded with the top edge pinned to the leader and quilted from the front of  the machine.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

That, frankly, was an overwhelming idea at this point, with it being such a big quilt.  I could do that and just not finish for this year’s fair, after all there’s another fair next year.  But I just chickened out and decided on a pantograph. So, I need to load it crosswise, with the longer axis parallel to the leaders.  Pantographs are quilted from the back side of the frame.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

That decision affects how I would piece the backing as well, as it is best for the seams to run parallel to the bars. There was only one fabric in my stash for backing that had enough fabric on the bolt.  I needed 5-1/2 yards to get the required 4 inches all around for longarming.  I have a couple of wide backs in the stash, but their autumn look didn’t go with this quilt.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

Now, what pantograph to choose? I pulled several from the basket to audition.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

I eliminated three right off, as they were not dense enough for the look I wanted. So, these two were the choice. The flowers and leaves didn’t seem to be the right scale for the houses. So, I picked the one on the left below for its feather motif and fairly dense quilting design.  It is called Feelin’ Groovy designed by Michelle Wyman and Terri Watson for Heart and Soul Quilts sold by Willow Leaf Studio.  The width of the panto is 14 inches, so one pass quilts a lot of area.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

Backing seam done, it was loaded with Warm and Natural batting. I folded up the bottom to check the square. Yippee, my borders are straight! Yes, I do this on my own quilts. I want to fix piecing or border issues before starting quilting. You can do the same with your quilts using the side of a bed.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

OK, getting there. Next choice, thread color. I auditioned lots of colors, I thought the greys would win, but they didn’t look as good on the houses as a brown tone.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

The choice came down to these three.  I had an idea that the light variegated gold might look like sunlight in the sky, but it was too bright for the houses. Ultimately, I decided on the light brown Essentials thread for the top, with Bottom Line in the bobbin.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

And we’re off! Amazingly, the tension is perfect from the beginning.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

The stitching stepped over the appliques easily. I was nervous about that.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

I like the look on the lighter colors, adding a bit of pattern to the larger pieces on the houses.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

It disappeared on the busier prints and darker colors.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

The birdies did well too, another breath holding moment, or five, LOL!

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

Working my way down the quilt, all is going well. I left it for the evening, to pick up again the next day.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

Starting again on day two of quilting, new bobbin and it is quilting nicely.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

And in a stroke of luck, the bobbin only ran out on the pebble fabric, so I could tie off and bury the threads and it didn’t show the starts and stops at all.  I did buy a side threading needle to make that easier.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

Down to the bottom of the quilting (which is the side of the quilt top), still doing well. Whew!!

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

Backing checked, no thread loop runs, all looks great, so off the frame it came.  Amazing!  No trouble at all.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

I cannot tell you how happy I am that it is quilted. I was really afraid that it would be a pain since the piecing has been such a trial.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

But there it is, here’s the bottom half.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

All trimmed, and ready for the final touches. Binding is next, and football preseason is here, so I have handwork to do for a number of days. I need to do the binding, then add all the embellishments like buttons for bird eyes and some other things. After that, it will need a hanging sleeve and a label. At this point, I am ahead of schedule and will surely have enough time to finish in time to show it at the Mountain Regional State Fair.

Quilting Be My Neighbor at From My Carolina Home

Have you ever had a project that gave you as much trouble as this one has given me?

My blog is about a variety of topics, quilting and sewing, crafting and cooking, reading and travel, mountain living and gardening, and more.  You can follow my blog in several ways, see the sidebar for email sign up or blog-reader links.  I have lots of free patterns for quilters, mystery quilt alongs, holiday quilt alongs, and seasonal events with giveaways.  Please follow me for all the fun!  New projects coming up!!

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Building a Brighter Year Quilt

Last fall during the Autumn Jubilee, quilter Diann won the prize of quilting a table topper.  She contacted me to ask if I would do a small quilt for a charity called Building a Brighter Year instead of her table topper.  This charity supports families with infants facing medical challenges and financial hardship in Colorado.  Of course, this was a no-brainer, I had to say yes to help this very worthy cause. She mailed it to me, and I set it up on the longarm with Warm and White cotton batting.

Diann's Quilt - Quilted by From My Carolina Home

Auditioning threads, there were several that looked nice. I decided on the brown on the left as it went well with the backing fabric she sent.  It is also polyester, so it adds a bit of shine to the work.  The bobbin has Bottom Line.

Diann's Quilt - Quilted by From My Carolina Home

Quilting it was fast, as it was small.

Diann's Quilt - Quilted by From My Carolina Home

I thought this sweet pantograph of hearts would look nice.

Diann's Quilt - Quilted by From My Carolina Home

The scale was good for a small quilt, giving a nice density to the quilting.

Diann's Quilt - Quilted by From My Carolina Home

I trimmed it for her, and shipped it back to her last week. She will add the binding, and then donate it to the charity for their silent auction, which will be in April. Thanks, Diann, for letting me participate with your charity! Her blog is Little Penguin Quilts, and I imagine she will show the finished quilt there when she gets it done.

Are you doing any charity sewing?

 

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Victorian Pastel Quilt

This was a beautiful quilt, and so pretty in the pastel pinks and purples.  I love this combination of colors.  The blocks are five sided log cabin style with at least a dozen different prints.  They were left for our local club’s program chair at our sew in and no one claimed credit.   The blocks were so pretty, and Marti set them on point with pale pink squares, and found a neat striped fabric for the border.  She wanted some kind of quilting that would show nicely in those pink blocks and I had the perfect thing.

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

Once again, the quilt is flat as can be even with all the bias edges in the setting design.

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

The pantograph is the same one I used on my AQS jury accepted quilt 2 years ago at the national show.  It is called Plumeria Garden by designer Lisa Calle at Intelligent Quilting.  It takes up excess fabric nicely if there are waves in the piecing, but this wasn’t needed in a quilt constructed by Marti. Heaven to quilt. Loading it up, I auditioned thread colors, and decided on a sweet pink Essentials thread. As usual, I put Bottom Line in the bobbin. The batting is Warm and White donated by The Warm Company. I started the quilting, and rolled it to the next pass.

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

Remember how I always say that I learn something with every quilt? Well this one was no different. Sometimes it is an exercise in problem solving. This time, while quilting one pass, the laser light wasn’t firmly tightened, so it drifted during the quilting. What that left me with was gaps in only part of the quilting between passes.

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

Oh great, now what. I couldn’t quilt another pass of the pantograph because there wasn’t enough room between the two. and when I got to the other end, the pantographs fit together again.

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

So, after a little thought, I decided on doing a bit of echo quilting, with a bit of the motif shapes as I could do them freehand. Whew! It doesn’t follow the pattern, but on a charity quilt, I am hoping that the similar density will camouflage the mistake.

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

The pantograph looks wonderful in those large pale pink squares, lovely texture.

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

Once again, I marvel at how flat the joining points are between four blocks.

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

I rotary cut the excess off after finishing the quilting.

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

My favorite Slow Sunday stitching, putting on binding.

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

All done, and ready to deliver.

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

I love these colors and this design. I am seriously thinking of making one for myself!

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

Someone is going to be just delighted!

Victorian Purples on Point ~ From My Carolina Home

Have you made a quilt with a block like this?

 

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May Is For Makers Week 3 – Free Motion Quilting

This week I’ll highlight a quilter blog that I regularly read. This lady should be on the blogroll of every quilter who does their own quilting. Her designs are so creative, and she does it all on a domestic sewing machine, not a longarm!

May Is For Makers | LRstitched.com

Her name is Lori Kennedy and she blogs at In Box Jaunt. I am continually amazed at the prolific new ideas for continuous motion designs she shares for free. Her imagination is simply boundless, and she is one of the most generous bloggers freely sharing her ideas and tutorials.  Her Free Motion Tutorials run the gamut of motifs from bugs to flowers, footballs and pencils, critters and kitties, leaves and fruit, holiday and seasonal, you name it!  She has over a dozen tutorials on just Doodling to create your own continuous line designs.  There are so many tutorials that the pages take almost a minute to load, so be patient and you will be rewarded with more ideas than you can imagine.

IBJfreemotion

Then she will show you posts on using many motifs to create lovely works of art, like this one posted just this past week.  It is a teacher gift using several of her motifs with doodle quilting.

LoriKennedy003

When Lori went to Craftsy recently to record her own class, I knew I had to buy it.  Her class is called Divide and Conquer: Creative Quilting for Any Space.  It is done in her easy follow style, and has class materials to download for practice pieces.  She is just so creative!  It is fun to watch Lori in action.  There is so much there that I am going to take weeks to work through all the lessons and do the practice.

Screen Shot 2016-05-06 at 7.11.47 PM

Right now it is still on the introductory sale until the end of May, so get it soon!  It is a super value considering all she shares and includes in the class.  Once again, I want to thank Lori for her generosity and sharing her expertise to help the rest of us be better quilters.  Buying her class was a really easy decision, and by doing so, she knows her work has value to me and many others.

If you are just finding this series, see what it is all about at May Is For Makers.

Do you free motion quilt?


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WIP Wednesday October 29

I went to five wonderful longarm classes at the AQS Show in Charlotte this past summer.  I have done a little practice of what I learned on the muslin pieces provided to us, but up to now I haven’t had a suitable quilt top to play with.  At the last meeting of the quilt club, the charity quilt chairperson gave me a Quilt of Valor to quilt.  This one looks like it is just made for a custom job, and I get to practice some of my new techniques.

QOVcustom-1

Loaded on the frame, now I have to decide what to put in each block.

QOVcustom-2

QOVcustom-3

I started by doing some SID (stitch in the ditch) around the blocks, sashing, and border.  Then, I warmed up with two motifs I have done before – piano keys in the outer border, and ribbon candy in the narrow sashing.

QOV Custom 4

OK, deep breath, and get over my fear of marking! I am just terrified that the water soluable pen won’t come out. I have new chalk markers too, and I am a little less afraid of them. But, here goes, marked the curved lines using Jamie Wallen’s Quilter’s Apothecary curved ruler and went for it.

QOVcustom-5

Yikes, lots of wobbles!!  I do need more practice, but you have to start somewhere! I’ll be working on this one for a few weeks around my day job.

What are you working on this week?

 

WIPWed   be6b3-linkybees


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More AQS Show Pearls and a Giveaway!!

One of the nicest, most genuine people I met at the AQS Charlotte show was Jamie Wallen.  His youtube videos literally saved my sanity when I was having trouble with my longarm tensions.  Warm, caring, and wonderfully encouraging, Jamie shares everything he can about free motion quilting, cramming an 8-hour course into 3 hours.

P1030986

His ruler design is great, with an angled handle that makes it easy to control.  Several of us tested this theory in another class using both a flat ruler and one with a perpendicular handle.  Neither of these were as easy to control as the ones from Jamie’s line, Quilters Apothecary.  I got both a straight edge and a curved edge ruler.

Quilters Apothecary Rulers 1

Quilters Apothecary Rulers 2

One of the pearls of wisdom from Jamie was this – if you break a titanium needle, it will not break cleanly.  It shatters.  If this happens to you, be sure you take out the old broken needle, remove your bobbin case, and flood the bobbin hook shuttle with machine oil to flush out the shards.  Then while the needle is still out, run the machine slowly to work the oil around and get the tiny shrapnel out, wipe off the hook then reinsert your bobbin and a new needle.  Jamie says this will prevent damage to the bobbin case and shuttle hook mechanism.

His designs were just stunning, and I wrote to ask what I might show on the blog.  Jamie and Rich generously said to share whatever I wanted.  So here are a couple of his beautiful designs.

P1030993

P1030998

Stunning aren’t they?!!! Jamie uses a water soluble marking pen in blue, and removes the marks with Sew Clean.  I tried this at home (of course I had to get a bottle from Jamie and Rich at the show) and it works great.  Plus it has a nice citrus scent.

He had lots of designs to show us, impossible to soak up all he had to offer in three hours. Did you know that wool battings will prevent creases in your quilts?  I didn’t!  Another pearl!!  I will need to investigate wool batting!!

P1030996

So, we got to draw for a bit, then sew a bit on the Gammill machines set up for us.  I wish I had taken a picture of the set up.  There were eight 12-foot tables with two longarms on each one, so 16 spots to practice!  Jamie says it takes 6-8 hours of practice for a design to be smooth, so practice first.  I just got a whiteboard that I’ll keep next to my chair to practice shapes in the evenings.  Here’s part of my practice piece.

Jamie's free motion

He also taught us how to do these delightful bleeding hearts. I just loved these and they weren’t as hard as you might think.

bleeding hearts quilting design

If you’d like to learn from Jamie, see his free videos at Jamie Wallen Quilting Videos.  I highly recommend these videos especially the one on longarm tension!!  If you ever have a chance to see him in person, go!!

Now to the giveaway!! While I was at the AQS show in Jamie’s class, I received this neat gift from Gammill, in fact I got more than one since I took more than one class in the room with the Gammill machines. The little kit has an 8 x 10-inch lunch bag sized tote, a beautiful set of silver and gold tone thread snips, needle gripper key chain, tape measure, retractable snip lanyard, a chapstick for lips, a four piece nail emery board and smoother, and a spritz hand sanitizer.

Gammillgiveaway

So, I will give one away to a faithful reader! If you are a follower of my blog, just leave a comment on this post, any tip or comment on quilting or Jamie’s videos, and how you follow to be entered in the random drawing on Friday afternoon.  International entries welcome!!  Good luck!!   Sorry, giveaway has been done, but stay tuned, there will be more.

 

Linking up

WIPWed  be6b3-linkybees Val's Quilting Studio