Saturday, July 30, 2016

Blended Quilting

Last week, while quilting the Holiday Forest runner, I was very conscious of making the background quilting blend in with the trees. And by that I mean making the background quilting in the small areas relate to each other, creating unity between all the small spaces.

Notice the landscape lines in between the trunks. See how they hit the trunks, follow the trunk for a small distance, and come back out again?

This is what I mean by 'blending'. It creates unified quilting between all parts instead of a bunch of separately quilted areas. It also makes the background quilting stay in the background, as the lines in the picture below appear to go behind the tree.

The drawn example below is what not to do. It creates a quilted area that doesn't relate to the other piecing - it just bounces back and forth. The background doesn't flow from one area to the next.

The correct way to quilt around pieced shapes is to have the quilting bump into the object, then stitch following the seam line, then resume quilting in the background. Yes, that means stitch-in-the-ditch.

The quilting moves to the element, stitches along side it, then moves away from the pieced element, ultimately creating a joining of all the elements.

Here's a closeup around one of the snowballs. 

The outline stitching around it blends in with the background stitching.

This concept applies to any background fill, not just the lines I've shown you. All it takes is a bit of planning, and the willingness to stitch-in-the-ditch. But the results are worth it!

Happy Quilting!

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Christmas in July Wrap Up

Yesterday was the last day of the 12 Days of Christmas in July Blog Hop, sponsored by Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict. Many thanks to Sarah for organizing this hop, keeping everyone updated, and creating a Christmas quilt-along too! I had so much fun seeing all of the great projects that I'd love to do it again next year! How about it Sarah?

So in the excitement for my day, Day 12, I totally forgot to feature the two wonderful bloggers from the day before. Carolyn at CJ gave this tutorial for a really neat tree wall hanging,


while Tisha at Quilty Therapy showed how to make this adorable wreath.

                          fabric christmas wreath

And of course, here's the three featured bloggers from Day 12. Let's start with Beth at Cooking Up Quilts with this lovely table topper, Double Diamonds, 

                          Paper Pieced Table Topper

and Linda at One Quilting Circle with this aptly named flying geese runner, Recalculating.


And lastly, my Holiday Forest runner and mats.

Thanks again for joining me on this Christmas blog hop, and have a wonderful time creating your own Christmas goodies!

Monday, July 25, 2016

Holiday Forest for Christmas in July

Today, it's my turn for the 12 Days of Christmas in July Blog Hop! My Christmas project is Holiday Forest, a table runner with matching placemats.

Made with a variety of green batiks for trees and a pretty blue snowflake print for the background, this runner and place mat set celebrate the Christmas season in a modern, understated manner.

Constructed with easy to paper piece trees, strip cut units for background pieces, and a few applique snowballs, this project was a snap to put together.

The runner measures approximately 15 1/2" x 44", and the place mats 11" x 15 1/2".

Background quilting is an easy landscape type fill, with the trees getting a simple shape repeat. Both add just the right amount of quilting, so as not to dominate the design.

Interested in making your own Holiday Forest runner? You can do just that, as I have a pattern available at my Etsy store. 

Thanks for sticking with me over the last 12 days of Christmas blog hopping! It certainly has been fun! 

Merry Christmas and have a great day quilting!

Friday, July 1, 2016

July 2016 Book of the Month

Time to move on from June's Irish Chain Quilts, (affiliate link) and choose another book to explore for the month of July.
The Book of the Month honor goes to Black & White, Bright & Bold, (affiliate link)

a book that has been on my shelf for quite awhile. It's time to make some quilts from my extensive black and white stash.

Over the past 3 1/2 years, I've enjoyed introducing you to different books each month, making the quilts, and giving a brief book review. But due to the treadmill of life, I've been considering moving the Book of the Month feature to a quarterly schedule. My question is: how do you feel about that? Do you enjoy seeing a different book each month for inspiration, or do you have so many projects going that the ideas go onto the 'someday' list? I'd love to hear your feedback, as it will help me decide which way to go. So, please, leave a comment, and I'll let you know my decision next month. But for this month, look forward to a Black and White, Bright and Bold (affiliate link) quilt!

Thanks, and have a wonderful weekend sewing!