No matter what I make, I am always wondering whether the fabric combinations will work after the quilt has been washed in the machine. Whether it’s a combination of fusible and pre-washed or pristine fabric fresh off the bolt or fabric and batting–polyester or cotton or cutaway or tearaway stabilizer, I never know how things will turn out. So, for the alphabet quilt, I did a little experiment.
I use Armo-Weft as a leave-in stabilizer for machine embroidery in quilts. I learned this from the Anita Goodesign project that I did last Spring. But I have been trying to decide whether to use a cutaway or tearaway stabilizer beneath the Armo-Weft. And, there is always the question as to whether to pre-wash all my fabrics or not. So this is the experiment.
I used Hobbs Heirloom 80/20 batting and 100% cotton backing.
The results: There is no appreciable difference between prewashing and using fresh off the bolt. And there is no appreciable difference in tearaway and cutaway stabilizer. The fabrics fresh off the bolt seem to shrink in accordance with the batting, so maybe it’s better not to prewash. All of the applique fabric had been pre-washed and it did not shrink or pucker on any of the blocks.
The underlining of ArmoWeft makes a nice weight quilt and is not heavy at all. I will continue to use the ArmoWeft,and I will not worry about washing the background fabric at all.
A couple of weeks ago I made the trek to Greensboro to McKinney Sew & Vac to look at embroidery machines. I’ve been saving my pennies for a long time as I planned to get a six needle machine. I looked at all the machines and decided on a beautiful single needle machine, the Pfaff Creative Sensation. It was love at first sight and after two weeks of stitching with it, I believe it will be a long-term romance. This photo is a bit dark, but you get the idea. Notice my calendar in the background is still on March 🙂
Here are some blocks that I have been stitching with it. I have always wanted to make an alphabet quilt, so this is one that is on it’s way. The embroidery is a set from Designs by JuJu. I love her work.
In the meantime, I’ve been digitizing a set of monsters, something I’ve always wanted to do. These aren’t fancy, but they’re fun–especially with bright fabrics. It seems it takes me at least three days and sometimes more to get a single monster the way I want it. But these are definitely coming along.
My Mom is still here, and I am trying to take one day a week to go somewhere with her. Last week we went to a Sewing and Quilting Expo in Raleigh. I had soooo much fun looking at all the wonderful machines and patterns–and I think she did too.
SewCalGal and other great quilters are having a blog hop this week with tutorials and projects to celebrate the release of a new book: Quick and Easy Hexie Quilts. And. . . there’s a prize at the end.
Here is the line up for this blog hop this week:
June 3 Karen Griska (The Selvage Blog)
June 4 Susan Cleveland (BlackberryCreek)
June 5 Melinda Fulkerson at Melinda’s Blog
June 6 Victoria Findlay Wolfe (Bumblebeans Inc)
June 7 Sew Cal Gal (SewCalGal)
June 8 Kelly Jackson ( I Have A Notion)
June 9 Pat Sloan
June 10 Julia Wood (Hexie Blog and Green Quilts)
These are two of Sherry’s quilts that I just finished. She has been binding for me, and I have been quilting for her. I think I’m getting the better end of this deal, but she says she has come to like doing the binding so who am I to protest. Which is your favorite–binding or quilting?
I used Aurifil–as always–for quilting these and did spiraling squares for the three-dimensional quilt and a zigzag overall for the black and white. I fell in love with the 3-D quilt the minute I saw it and bought the book (Scraps by Judy Martin). Haven’t made it yet, but it’s on my bucket list.
Have you seen this tutorial on making labels using Spoonflower fabric? It is the greatest idea. And wouldn’t it be a great way to make care labels for your quilts that could be stitched into the edge of the binding on the back.
For care labels, I like to make a fold-over label. I fold right sides together, stitch the sides, turn right side out, and stitch the raw edge into the binding on the back. This is a little trick I learned from Linda Lawson at Longarm Chat.
Have you had fabric printed by Spoonflower? I used some in a commission quilt and it was very nice fabric.