Thursday, 11 November 2010

Helen, one of my quilting friends, brought this pattern into class and three of us decided to have a go. I have used this technique before stitched by hand so decided to attempt this one by machine.

I could not find a suitable background fabric to go with the flower fabrics I had chosen from my stash, so I decided to paint one. I had a piece of plain white cotton that I painted with ultramarine transparent fabric paint, graduating the colour from dark at the top to a paler shade at the bottom. I sprinkled coarse salt onto it while it was still wet to give a mlottled effect. I heat fixed it in the tumble drier once it was dry. It was exactly what I needed.

Experiments on the type of tread to use gave unfavourable results with clear and smoke invisible threads (YLI), good with fine black polyester (Gutterman polyester embroidery). I used a black nylon bobbin/lingerie thread in the bobbin. I tried out the stitching on my newly purchased Janome 4800QC and my old Singer Special Edition and decided the stitching was better on the Singer,it was also easier to line up the needle with the edge of the bias binding on this machine.

I tacked on all the coloured sections and the 1/4" bias binding and layered the top, wadding and backing. I started machine stitching the bias binding in place but was not happy with the result. I unpicked the stitching and separated the layers. I stitched the binding on the top layer, occasionally I wobbled off the binding for a stitch or two but it was a better job than through all three layers. I layered the stitched top with the wadding and backing and machine quilted them together 'in the ditch' on the Janome with invisible thread and the even feed foot. I used a black bias binding to finish the edge. It looks lovely hanging on my sewing room wall where it complements the blind (also my own work) and a sunflower picture.

I started this in January 2005 and finished it in September 2005. Helen hung hers on here yellow dinning room wall where it also looks lovely. I don't think Carole ever finished her wall hanging, she is not too keen on applique.

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