Hi Quilters and Embroiderers!
Have you ever colored quilt blocks? You know, like coloring in a coloring book? Well let me tell you, it’s FUN!!!
First, get a solid color of all cotton fabric. No blends, please. Wash it to remove any starch or sizing, dry it, then iron to remove any wrinkles.
Next, draw a design on the fabric with a washout fabric marking pen. Not artistic? That’s okay, copy a page from a coloring book, tape that to a window or a light box, tape the fabric over the page and trace the design onto the fabric. OR, you could grab any embroidery block with a pattern you like!
Gather a set of Gel Pens and a box of Crayons. It doesn’t matter which brand. I have a box of 96 that I don’t share with anyone else.
With the Gel Pens, go over all the outlines of the design (anything that would be stitched with an outline stitch in embroidery).
Now color in the design with the crayons. Lay down more color for shading, etc, or leave it looking like a fun, kid colored design.
Set your iron on high heat (as high as your fabric will allow), no steam. Lay your colored fabric on the ironing board with colored side up. Lay a paper towel on top and press with the iron. This melts the wax into the paper towel and sets the color.
If you want your design to be darker, color right over the top of what was already done.
Repeat the process of coloring and ironing until you like what you see. And, yes, you can wash these without loosing color. Pre-stamped blocks for embroidery work well for this technique but you can’t pre-wash to remove the sizing or the design will wash out also.
Give it a try. Hope you like it!
Hey all, it looks like the snow is staring to melt, and spring is just around the corner!I With the spring season comes the excitement of our new show season, in fact our next show will be in Evansville, IN next weekend. After that is Queeny Park in Ballwin, MO the third weekend of March. April however will be our busiest month with shows in Decatur, IL and Paducah, KY. Check our show schedule to see when we will be coming your way!
Interesting places: we have a quilt museum to tell you about in Lincoln, Nebraska! Called the International Quilt Study Center & Museum, it is located at the University of Nebraska on Lincoln campus. It was started in 1997 with a donation of 950 quilts from ONE couple. If you happen to be traveling through this area it might be something worth seeing and telling your fellow quilt enthusiasts about!
Stable Piecing: We have several new ideas for you using Stable Piecing. The miniatures are coming along nicely, and as always, the pattern is the most time consuming part of the design process. Our testing process takes a while, so as to ensure the very best of our efforts so you can have a beautiful piece to create at home at your leisure. We find that this process is well worth it in the end, as our goal is to give you the best possible product. Coming soon to you: Stable Piecing Miniatures!
Batting SPECIAL: We will have a batting special available for pre-order through our website for deliver at Paducah, KY this year. That means you can order batting through our site to receive the special and it will be delivered to the show for you to pick up! (We will be in the Pavillion at the same booth we were at last year). Watch our website for this up and coming special: Just think of all the shipping savings that will be!
Thanks for coming by, and until next time keep up the good work!
The name of the group is “Knitting With Ginny”, but knitting isn’t the only thing we do! This is a great place to come when you can’t find time anywhere else; you won’t have to answer the phone. We work, chat, and laugh a lot. Come prepared to play with yarn, string, fibers etc.
The Forgotten Shop Hop is back again for its second year! Eight shops will be participating this year, but never fear: you will have nine blocks available, and we are making two blocks for you! All the blocks are baskets of some sort, each one has it’s own unique characteristics. You will be able to embellish them with your own style, therefore making your quilt a “one of a kind” treasure.
All the blocks finish at 12″ and they are all made to be set on point. Mom and I have had a blast designing the finishing kit we are going to use; the ideas are endless! The difficulty was choosing just one.
The hop has a scavenger hunt for you to participate in this year, and each shop is giving a $25 gift certificate of its own! Prizes will be given for just visiting the shops, and a different prize for participating in the scavenger hunt. Have your passport stamped at each shop to make sure you get your name in the running for all the prizes. Passports can be purchased ahead of time or at the first shop you visit.
All the shops will be open at the same time to make your trip planning much easier. Pick up your flyer at any of the participating shops to get all the details. We are looking forward to seeing you all again this year!
The holiday season is coming, as well as our November sale on our in-stock garments such as: coats, polos, hoodies, sweatshirts, T-shirts, etc. – at 30% off while supplies last! (This does not include letter coats or hats). As always we will be open during normal hours the Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving.
We have just completed our show circuit for this year, the last one we attended was in Bloomington, Indiana. We had a great time! However the weather was brisk, making it just chilly enough to make you appreciate the hot chocolate. Since our last show, we now get to stay home and plan for Thanksgiving. I am still blessed to be able to have all my kids home at the same time and point during the long Thanksgiving weekend.
As we begin to welcome the holiday seasons, I find it is mid-November and I have icicles hanging from my truck. There is a nice blanket of snow covering the grass, a dusting on the roads, and icy spots on the sidewalks. The leaves have all blown away and my last rose bush has succumbed to the freezing weather. I still have a few mums in protected areas around my house that have blooms that don’t look frost bitten yet, that won’t last much longer though.
Mom is still coming up with more Stable Piecing designs! She is developing the foundations and writing the first draft of the pattern, while I am working on testing these new designs. The first release of the new year will be a collection of miniatures. My daughter is piecing these and writing the first draft of the pattern, the initial release will be 2″ & 3″ blocks. I have seen a couple of the blocks and they are going to be awesome!
May I ask for your help? Feel free to give feed back and let me know how you would use these miniatures – Christmas ornaments, cornerstones, borders, garment embellishments, etc.?
Happy Thanksgiving to all! Hope to see you soon,
Much as I dislike talking about Christmas before Thanksgiving, I know that I, and probably you, also, need to think about what we are going to give. If you are like me, you like making presents yourself…..there’s just something special about a gift that comes from your heart and hands. With that in mind, may I suggest a couple of quick–and I do mean QUICK– gifts to make.
One is pillows made of polar fleece–you know, the kind we make blankets from. All you need is 2 pieces of fleece that measure 2″ to 4″ larger than your desired pillow size. This 2″ to 4″ is arbitrary depending how long you want fringe to be, so plan accordingly. You will need a pillow form or you could substitute poly fill stuffing or scraps of quilt batting in place of the pillow form.
Pin the pieces of fleece together. Decide how long you want the fringe to be–say 1″–and stitch around 3 sides this distance from the cut edges. Use a longer stitch length than for quilt block piecing. Insert the pillow form or stuff and close the remaining side.
Make fringe by cutting from the outer edges of the fleece up to —but not through— the stitching.
For another quick gift think about making a 10-minute table runner. You can insert Insul-Batt when finishing it to make a long pot holder! We have several kits available in the store and fabric if you don’t find what you like in our kit choices. The batting is not included.
There’s also the 1-Hour baby blanket. These are kits with fabric and directions included. You can make a beautiful blanket for that little one in your life and still have time to finish that other quilt you’ve been working on!
Until next time, keep those needles humming.
How’s this for a familiar scenario? You are busily piecing on a quilt and there’s a deadline (either self imposed or otherwise) and every time you come to a seam, the machine can’t quite climb over the several layers of fabric confronting it. It begins to do what I call Sewing-In-Place, which translates to the fabric not moving under the foot as it should, and the machine is packing in stitches one on top of the other instead of spaced out like they should be. The needle has probably jammed a couple of those layers of fabric down into the throat plate of the machine.
Now, what do you do? Well, one choice would be to take the piece out from under the machine foot and start over. The same thing will probably happen again.
The second choice would be to set the needle into the fabric in what we call the needle-down position. Then lift the presser foot and gently lift the fabric so it moves up the needle. Take a long needle—a darning needle or a doll needle works well—and pierce the fabric just behind the machine needle. Put the foot down and start to sew slowly while gently applying a little pressure to the darning or doll needle to coax the fabric to feed as it should.
This problem most often occurs when the needle hole on the machine’s throat plate is a wide one. That’s the one used for fancy stitches. You can also change the throat plate to one with a single hole as another option.
If this still doesn’t work, please feel free to bring in your machine and project and we will do our best to help you solve the problem. We hope to see you soon!
One of the comments I hear most often is “I can’t learn that. It is to complicated.” When I was a kid I can remember saying that to my Dad. His response was always, “You can’t learn any younger.” So, in other words, get busy and learn it if you want to.
The things that I have learned and can teach someone else in the quilting realm I had to take the time to learn first. I suffer from a syndrome that plagues most people. I just want to know something, I don’t want to take the time to learn. Well, that just doesn’t happen. You have to want to learn something, then take the time to learn it. That means taking a class, reading, practicing and having the tenacity to stay with it long enough to learn it. Finding someone who can help you when you get stuck is another powerful way to acquire a new skill. Pretty soon it is easy.
Just think of all the things you have learned in your life: cooking, cleaning, gardening, canning, baking, driving, raising kids, etc. How many of these things did you just know how to do? None. You learned them by doing, failing, watching someone else, usually a parent, and continuing to try until you succeeded. You may not remember the learning process, but if you reflect on your life I think you will find that you had to take the time to learn all of the skills you now possess.
I’m sure you have many more skills to learn in the rest of your life. Maybe one of them will be dealing with textiles of some sort. If there is any way we can help just let us know. We always learn something from those we teach as well. We are all students and teachers at the same time, we just have to slow down enough to recognize just what we are and what we have.
Have your ever figured and then cut your batting to what you thought was the right size only to be surprised at the last roll of the quilt that the batting is a couple of inches too short? It happens more often than you think. The only way to fix this is to add a piece of batting. There are a few things that you need to watch when adding this new piece so that the join isn’t visible.
First, cut a piece the size you need, giving yourself a little wiggle room. That means you need it a couple of inches bigger all the way around. Now the next thing to consider is how to incorporate it in the quilt top. Ask yourself a series of questions.
1. How close is the join to the edge of the quilt?
Answer: If your joining point is very close to the edge, you will need to cut the quilted batting back away from the edge so the join is several inches from the edge. You will want to look at your border quilting design to decide where the best place for a join is.
2. Will the joined edges of the two pieces of batting have quilting crossing this join the entire length?
Answer: If the quilting design will criss cross the join, like a feather or stipple, you will just need to butt the edges of the two pieces of batting together. Use quilt basting spray to assure the edges stay where you want them. Make very sure that they do not overlap or have gaps between the edges. The overlapped places will have bumps because the batting in those places will be twice as thick as the rest of the quilt. The places where the batting doesn’t meet will have thin places because there isn’t any batting there. You will be able to see these places quite easily.
3. How do I get the batting edges to stay where I want them until they can be quilted?
Answer: Use quilt basting spray if the design is dense enough to hold the batting in place. If the quilting design just won’t accomplish this task, then you will have to whip the edges together. Do not pull this seam tight as this will create bumps in the batting. If the seam is too loose there will be gaps in the batting.
4. What thread do I use for this seam?
Answer: Use your regular piecing thread to match the batting. It doesn’t have to be a perfect match, just don’t use a thread color that will show through your top or backing fabric. I usually use white, off white or black, depending on the color of the batting.
Hope this will get you back on tract again to finish those UFO’s that find themselves plagued with this problem. Please feel free to bring your quilt in if you need some help with this.