Friday, January 28, 2011


yup, I have actually reached post number 200!
Today's post is about working with black fabric, the first thing you need to know, is that you will always want to purchase more fabric than you think you will need for a project (black fabrics are really difficult to match if you find you have not bought enough) I realized too late, that I don't have the yardage required for what I had originally planned, so this piece will have to go in a different direction. In an earlier post, I showed one of these hand appliqued feather blocks, here are four of them now joined to create the center medallion.
Those colours? some are commercial dyes and many are my hand painted fabrics. Another thing I discovered about using black fabric is that with such high contrast, every flaw is magnified. YIKES!
Now I suppose post number 200 needs to be celebrated, so I think I must have a giveaway. Leave a comment to enter, its just that simple. Please be sure I have a way to contact you
The prize?
how about a copy of Zentangle Fabric Arts

(you can read the post about my involvement in this book here)

For any of you who may already own this book, let me know in the comment and if your name is drawn I'll send you something else. I'll make the draw next Friday.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

"My Tweets" Block 1

Those of you who know me, know that I rarely use patterns created by others, but this year I have decided to take on my very first BOM. Erin Russek over at One Piece at a Time is hosting a block of the month called "My Tweets" applique quilt featuring lots of birds, flowers and vines.
Now, of course, you know I am not going to do exactly what everyone else is doing. While I really enjoy hand applique I also want to draw, paint, ink, bead............and well you get the idea. I began block one with some paints, inks and brushesOnce I had the image completely painted I added applique here and there.
I want to wait until I have several blocks to this stage before deciding how "finished" this is. I am looking forward to seeing how this will evolve over the next 12 months.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Washing Yardage

Let me begin my stating that this was NOT my idea......I read, or heard of this method for pre-washing yardage some time ago. I wish I could remember where because I would love to give them credit. This little time saving trick worked so well for me I had to pass it along.

I had a piece of fabric just over 9 metres long, needing to be pre-washed. You know what happens when you throw that full length of fabric into the end up with a big twisted mess that has to be unwound to then go into the dryer where it just twists up again so that by the time it is dry you have to spend a long time at the ironing board trying to get rid of all the wrinkling.
To avoid this, a little prep work is all you need. Here is what I did.
I opened the fabric up so that it was the full 45" long, serged the raw edges to prevent unraveling, and then began accordion folding in roughly 1m lengths along one selvage edge. I set my machine to a long stitch, used a contrasting thread in the bobbin and proceeded to stitch the selvage edges closed through all layers. ( Not sure if it was only supposed to be done at one end but I did this to both ends)
What went into the washer was a piece of fabric that measured about 45 x 40 inches and 9 layers thick. I checked it a couple of times during the wash cycle to make certain it stayed in that shape. When it came out of the dryer I unpicked the basting threads and left the piece draped over the ironing board still folded, to finish drying (the selvage area was still damp)

The only pressing I will need to do is what I would generally when beginning any project. You can bet I'll be using this method to pre-wash my fabrics in the future

Friday, January 14, 2011

Marking Solution

How do you transfer a design onto dark fabric when even a light box doesn't work? Here's what I did. Wanting to transfer my markings for applique placement, I created a stencil.
This allows me to easily see exactly where I am placing my design and mark it. In this case, I kept it a little "inside" my finished design so that I could place my applique pieces knowing that I would not have to worry about any of the lines showing on the finished block

You might think this would be a bit of a pain if you only plan to use the design once, but it is a great solution for doing multiples of applique, quilting designs, trapunto......well you get the idea.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Getting Back on Track

I had fallen a little behind in doing the weekly responses for The Creative Prompt Project.
I thought that while I will continue to pick away at the list of ones I've missed, I would at least try to stay up to date with the words for 2011. Jaye posted the first one of the new year on is my response. Can you guess what the word is?

The answer is here

Monday, January 3, 2011

Do you love applique?

Well, if you do, you will not want to miss out on this opportunity. Over at One Piece at a Time ,Erin has so generously provided her patterns as free download-able PDFs for a beautiful block of the month applique quilt, but you will need to hurry as they will only be available till January 5th.... you can find all the info about this quilt and the downloads here
I am still pretty new to applique so I can use all the practice I can get.......I did a quarter of one of the blocks just to see how it would look.For this, I used the Invisafil threads. I LOVE them for hand applique. They are a fine, 100wt polyester.... your stitches will just disappear!

Saturday, January 1, 2011


Yes, I know it is Jan 1st, and that it is winter here, but yesterday I awoke to loud honking of a flock of Canada geese flying overhead...........silly birds should have flown south some time ago, which sparked this response to the CPP prompt word #91 Autumn
This past Friday, Jaye of Artquiltmaker, posted the 100th prompt word since starting this project nearly 2 years ago. You can find the prompts words for 2010 here and 2009 here
Jaye is always happy to welcome new participants (doesn't have to be a can post anything that a particular prompt word brings to mind)
It really is a terrific exercise to keep the creative juices flowing!
Copyright Jill Buckley