It’s hard not to sometimes, post on facebook that is but I know not everyone who reads my blog follows me on facebook. I’m okay with that so for those of you who follow me on facebook, some of this will be a bit of a repeat.
As an opening aside Keith sent the next quilt, we’ve named it “Arsenic and Old Lace” I am desperately trying to understand the “color” of arsenic, apparently there is no general consensus as to the color and I was provided with this link which left me more options than I thought. Yiyiyi what is this quilter to do…I do have something percolating in my head and it’ll all come together at the right moment.
A couple of weeks ago I shared Mini-me where I’m piecing a series of small log cabins using 3/4″ strips. The log cabin will come together shortly. These strips for this next quilt are cut at 1 1/4″, significantly larger just cause I wanted them to be. 🙂 Good reason, eh? I’m still working with small strips and one of the things that becomes even more essential is keeping that 1/4 inch seam allowance. For me there are 3 components: A) needle & thread; B) patchwork foot and C) pressing.
In the first photo the BERNINA patchwork foot #37 from needle center to the outside edge of the foot it’s 1/4″. The other thing I like are the front and back notches that are 1/4 in away from the needle position great for piecing and binding.
It’s hard to see the color variation in this photo however this is part of the color run of gray and the red to yellow from Cherrywood Fabrics. Pardon me a moment while I swoon.
Thread & needle – I prefer to use MasterPiece by Superior Threads for piecing. Look what happened today! I use an 80/12 needle with it – either a microtex or top stitching needle. Depends on my mood and what I’m doing. I love quilting with this thread as well particularly when I want the quilting to fade to the background it’s fine.
So as I’m stitching those strips my bobbin runs out. Holy cow it’s weird when that happens on my Bernina 780. And I do mean weird. So I wound another bobbin and 1/2 with this and soon the spool was empty. Shock! Horror!! What’s a quilter to do? Rummage through every drawer of her thread cabinet looking for the other spool that I know I have. Success!
Pressing. Essential to the art of piecing is knowing when and how to iron and when and how to press. Iron yardage, press piecing. On the advice of a friend I’ve started pressing with vodka (cheap vodka, but vodka) and it works very well. When pressing I use a multi-step process: press to set the seam; spritz and finger press open the seam; press to set the seam; flip the piece over and press from the front. Something I’ve noted as I press the seams open I can feel if I’ve got the seam all the way open.
Because I’m cutting this on a 45 degree angle later on I’m offsetting the piecing by 1 1/4″ (the width of the cut strips) this save fabric later on. I’m using the see through drafting ruler. It’s handy, light weight and fits under the extension table on the machine. This is Cherrywood people, gotta use it to the best advantage. Yes, I know I can get more, but I have this here, I’m inspired now and chomping at the bit to stitch.
And here we go, the first finished star point. I’m using all the square inches I have available to me to get as many of these stitched up as I can. I’m not sure of the layout just yet. Right now I’m thinking it’ll be dark in the center and lighten up as it goes out. I say that now, it could change. But probably not. As I stitch I use the peek-a-boo method to make sure my seams are lining up, the seam ripper came out a couple of times just to get things lined up. I have something in mind for this quilt.