Sunday, November 14, 2010

Folk Art 1

Time to reveal my last project... I chose “Folk-Art Applique Table Center” on page 160.

The project is listed under hand appliqué in the book. However, I didn’t use any hand appliqué. Instead, I used three different methods for machine appliqué.

Machine Appliqué methods used:
1. Fusible-Web Method -- using Lite Steam-A-Seam 2.
2. Reverse Appliqué -- where a seam allowance is cut inside an appliqué shape that was marked on a top layer of fabric.
3. Iron-on interfacing used as a foundation fabric -- great for crazy quilt, appliqués, and selvage blocks.

Book, Fabrics

For this last project, I am going to divide it into two parts. That way, I can dialog the process the way I wish to and still have time today to continue with my preparations for this week's exams.


First, I hand-stitched my layers together and marked where the leaves were to go using a yellow tracing paper. Below it shows that I machine stitched on this yellow line before the shapes can be cut out. I had three layers of fabric - top, white, yellow-green. The backing fabric was stitched on after all the applique was complete.

Stitching on the Yellow Line

The pattern was copied from the book with my printer and the pages assembled before I could transfer some of the details to my top fabric.

The Paper Pattern

Next, with a small pair of scissors I cut just inside the machine stitched lines. This was done in two separate steps as I didn't want to cut too deep and mess up the process. Below you can see one shape is cut one layer deep revealing a white fabric. The shape beside that one is cut two layers deep to reveal the yellow-green fabric.

Because the yellow-green fabric is much darker then my top layer fabric, I used a white layer in-between them so that the darker colour would not show through the lighter fabric.

Yellow-Green Leaves

After all the shapes for the leaves were cut out, I used a light coloured thread and zig-zagged around the cut edges. Also shown below are the cut-out pieces for the flowers and the red hearts.

Applique Pieces- Leaves, Flowers, Hearts

The green flowers (tulips) and red hearts are ready to attach to the quilt top. Along with the leaves, this quilt uses three applique techniques. And now that I think about it, it appears to be a very fitting finish to my year's technique challenge, in that I end with my favorite technique.

Applique Pieces Ready to Attach

The tulips are stitched to the quilt tip using the machine buttonhole stitch in a variegated thread to match the fabric. Also, you can see the zig-zag stitch around the leaves. As this is a folk-art quilt the leaves to me don't really look like leaves, but they do create an interesting pattern around the edges of this quilt.

Leaves and Flowers

Lastly, the hearts are stitched to the quilt top. I was originally debating whether to use the buttonhole stitch or the zig-zag stitch. But after trying both, I wasn't happy with either. I also considered trying handstitching them on, but of course, you can probably guess how that went.  Or didn't go!!

So, digging out my sewing machine manual, I decided to use a stitch I hadn't used yet, and that one worked perfectly. A new machine stitch and no messy results, well, that was perfect! The book calls is an applique stitch.

Stitching on the Hearts

Before stitching on the flowers and hearts, I machine stitched the star in the center of the quilt top, as shown above. First, I marked it with the yellow tracing paper and then marked the points with pins and then carefully stitched on the yellow lines.

This may look confusing, but it worked really well. I didn't want the tracing lines to be dark, so this helped me see the points where I needed to turn the fabric. After stitching it in yellow, it needed more punch, so I stitched more lines with a red thread.

The Pins Mark the Star's Lines

Next week's entry will show the completion of the construction process and final photos... Enjoy your creative time!!

More Book Titles...
If you wish to see more quilting books you can check out my website for more details. Those books reviewed are listed on the "featured" page.


Sharyn said...

Looking good! Best wishes on your schooling.

Darlee Byron said...

Thanks Sharyn!