July Quilted Block of the month part 2

Last week we focused on the “bones” also known as stitching in the ditch. When you’re working on a quilt it’s not a “have to do” rather, it’s a good thing to do. When working on something like @play the bones get stitched as these would be the ditch in a pieced quilt top. Finer thread makes this stitching almost disappear into the batting, which is the goal.

NYB tension check

Our post ended with this delightful conundrum, makes you kind of tense doesn’t it. Changing thread weight and color means that the needle, and tension need some kind of adjustment. For the top Wonderfil FabuLux Hush a 40 wt. trilobal polyester (means shiny!) designed by Debby Brown, for the MicroQuilter by Superior, an 80 weight polyester. Finer threads in the bobbin take up less room in the stitch, allowing tighter, closer stitching without skewing the quilt.
Clearly the tension was off in the first few stitches. This is a simple adjustment of the tension.
– lift the presser foot lever
– increase the tension (move dial to a higher number)
– take a few stitches, stop and check
– if the tension is good, keep stitching
– if the tension isn’t good, tweak it

Using the Sewline Marking pencil I placed a dot, about an inch up from the arc, about in the middle. I stitched from the peak of the spikes to the dot, then from the dot to the next peak. Using the same thread, I arced back. Just a small curve from the top of the peak, to the same dot.

NYB corner making thread choices
What choice thread? Lime Green or Orange?

Next up the big expanse, other wise known as the corner. The options are limitless. A long time ago this would have completely freaked me out. Now either there’s something on my brain. Sometimes I wait. This is a time to doodle, write blog posts, articles, walk up and down the stairs for the heck of it. Then there’s the old phone a friend, and the send friend a picture of the quilt.

The thinking led me to straight lines. It’s a basic principle – opposites attract. Straight lines highlight, and help define curves; curves soften the feel of straight lines. General rule. Lots of straight lines can do something dynamic to a geometric, square, block style quilt. Straight lines chosen, because why not.


Purple and orange are my favorite colors so I chose the orange Magnifico, another 40 weight, trilobal polyester thread. Stitch, stitch, stitch. Using the edge of the #24 Free Motion Embroidery foot, which measures 1/4 inch from needle center to the outside edge of the foot.

NYB straight lines

I started in the ditch (seam allowance) Next week I’ll show you the finished straight line quilting, including a wee bit of unplanned stitching, and what happened in the corner.

Making progress

CAM00828Every once in a while I have a Southern Comfort Manhattan in memory of my mother-in-law. The other day was one of those days where her memory was very present in my heart. Here’s to you Joy!CAM00837

Now back to our regularly scheduled program…QUILTING!I’m continuing to work on “I feel enormous in your Lilliputian world” section by section with the great hope that I’ll have it finished Tuesday night as I leave bright and early Wednesday morning and would like to be able to deliver it on the other end.  The light from the sun and the 780 hit the thread on the left just right so it looks like it’s glowing.  As I stitched the nautilus pattern my eyes were drawn to the glowing. I guess I can call that section “glow worm”.

CAM00838 I decided to switch up the thread changing from Magnifico to Kimono Silk.  The look, feel and texture just work. I’m not sure if each color pictured will be used or if another color or three will be used.  I’m planning on repeating one section however I may have passed the point where the look I hope to achieve will work the way I see it in my head. This is one of the hazards of not planning ahead. It is something I can live with.

CAM00841After I finished the “macaroni” section (after the nautilus section) I wanted to see the overall look and feel of the quilt. I like it, which is nice because there are moments where I don’t like what’s happening.  In those moments uncertainty will settle in with several options cropping up:
1) ditch the quilt
2) keep going and hope it all works out
3) get out the seam ripper
4) show the offending bit to friends privately or publicly and get some input
A side note on quilterly advice: it is there to help us weed out the choices in front of us.  There is no obligation to use the quilterly advice given.  The follow-through to that is when asked and I give advice there is no expectation on my part that you will follow the advice.  It’s your quilt. It’s your rules.

CAM00842Someone asked me if I have “Superman” eyes with all this teeny tiny stitching I’m doing.  Uhm, nope, just bifocals.  At some point I will need to use a magnifier however at this point I’m just stitching and looking through the lower portion of my glasses.
As I show these last two pics I realize the section I want to repeat isn’t going to work visually the way I want it to.  Oh well these things happen.  I’m still happy with it.  I do know what I’m doing with the border once I’m out there, I’m stitching in the title of the piece and signing it.

I just read a great quote that I think is worth sharing:

“When perfectionism is driving us, shame is riding shotgun, and fear is that annoying backseat driver” Brene Brown
Check out this post on A Quilters Heart.

Happy Quilting!