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.

A gift

Sometimes gifts come in fun and beautiful ways. Debby Brown, friend, quilter, quilting teacher and Handi Quilter Educator. Debby is a quilting bestie, offering encouragement, sage advice and good honest opinions when asked. A darned fined quilter, indeed. I do admire Debby.
gift 1The other day Debby and I were chatting and she asked if the mail arrived.  It had not. Yesterday she asked again, and my husband handed me a box. Inside a little gift, a tiramisu, a little pick me up of sorts: an adorable fat-eighth, a sparkly pen that will stay with my planner (which I love by the way. Deco-Bob thread (I’ve been wanting to try this one), Wonderfil Tutto (a nod to the article I have in the current issue of Generation Q Magazine). Did you notice that the Tutto is orange? She knows that orange is one of my very favorite colors! 
Did you notice that the colors on the front of this issue are purple and orange? Oh my goodness! I totally have to thank Lisa Lauch, our Creative Director, for that. Though I don’t think she really knows that purple and orange are my faves!!

chuao chocolate – mmm chocolate and lip balm, who doesn’t need a good lip balm every now and again. And the sweetest bit: a Longaberger basket. I love Longaberger baskets and I have several around the house that once belonged to Joy. I’d own a few more, they are spendy and worth every, single, hand-crafted inch of their spendiness.
gift 2This little pick me up has a purpose and it is received with the joy in which it was intended.
Thanks so much Debby.

Happy Quilting!


Mail Art & a quilt shop

Mail Art

The Introduction to Art on Coursera is fun so far.  Mail art speaks to this quilters heart, we’ve been sending postcards and making artist trading cards for ages.

mail art backI’m titling the mail art “Treasured Memories”

Part of the fun of any project is figuring out what will work and working with what I have on hand.  After reading the guidelines I decided to make a party invitation.  I like all the background work of the party, making the invitation, planning the food and decorations, giving thought to what the party is about.  Then I’m done.  Y’all can party, let me start cleaning up. Okay it’s not quite like that I do enjoy my friends.

side note: I’m going to need more lutradur, just sayin’.

mail art full viewTo give the envelope some body without using quilt batting I fused fabric to lutradur with Mistyfuse.  Around the edge of the card and the envelope I used Wonderfil 50 wt cotton thread to do a zigzag stitch all the way around.  (Love the BERNINA 780 for this!)  Keeping with the “what I have on hand” theme I used bits and pieces to decorate the back of the envelope, evoking memories of letter writing marathons I’d have with a few friends in my early teens.  This was our only way to chat with each other as we lived in different states.

When we first started letter writing I was a novice.  It took a little while to get the hang of answering, writing back took more than a simple, “yes” or “no” to her questions.  I can imagine the perplexed look as she read my pithy missives.

Once the pieces were stitched together I used a gel pen to address the envelope and make the “place stamp here” in the upper right hand corner.

If you were to take the invitation out of the envelope this is what you’d see.  The inside is more of the Paula Nadelstern Fabrique-Istan collection that I used in “Name” and “Woman”.

mail art lets have a partyI need to get a slightly better shot of the invitation as it is right now.  The yellow from the inside showing at the bottom is intentional, in the right light the words “Let’s have a party”.  On the inside of the invitation I broke out the Derwent Inktense pencils and played just as I did when I would write letters.  Just a little something to make the paper interesting.lets have a party inside

I think one day I’d like to have this party. Make all of the invitations.
Each unique and fitting the person being invited to the celebration.



Mariner’s Compass Quilt Shop

mariners compass 006Tilde and Feather Zone are headed for Ohio for the National Quilt Associations Quilt show.  I forgot that Feather Zone needs a regular sleeve again as it had been mounted on fabric for hanging at Quilt Festival in Houston. So this morning I took a quick trip to Mariner’s Compass in Bath.  This shop is 3 blocks from Halcyon Yarn.  I was |   | close and didn’t get there before today.


When I walked in both Amanda Campbell and Deb Boucher (Tea Rose Quilting).  It’s a delightful shop that just became a Brother dealership!  Congratulations!!!  I now have a BadAss Quitlers Society Pin thanks Deb.  We wore them to pose for a photo that one of the customers took for us.

mariners compass 004I picked up the purple for the sleeve, stork scissors, a Nancy Drew book panel and a spool of Wonderfil, another good thread to use quilters!

Happy Quilting!