Tag Archives: Long Arm Quilting

Scrap Quilting is an Experience! / Bonnie Hunter is Fantastic!

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bonnie hunter tulip time block

Had a really great time last week at Bonnie Hunter’s workshop in Cypress, Texas. She is the most down to earth, friendly teacher!! What an experience. She will be speaking at the Coastal Prairie Guild in Missouri City, Texas next February. Yeah, I know, way to long to wait. Bonnie is an avid collector of vintage machines as well as a scrap quilt gal. She has a great scrap saving system and you can read about it on her website, http://www.quiltville.com Lots and lots of free patterns as well.

I am not a scrap person and was really unsure about “scraping”. I did her Easy Street mystery over the holidays and had such fun with it that I have attempted to get into scrap mode. Wow, that’s harder than you would think for a non “scraper”. You would not believe the pieces she was confiscating from the trash bin at the workshop! Look on her site for her little bitty “ruler” that has tiny holes in it so that you can check any machine you are sewing on to make sure you have an accurate 1/4 inch seam. I bought one, but it is so tiny I’m not sure I got home with it. I may have to buy another ($3). I highly recommend getting yourself one. So Cool!  The block is my first of many for Bonnie’s Tulip Time quilt.  It is in her new book “String Fling”.

Until Later
BE HAPPY…Karen

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Hints for a great binding and Sandy Quilt donation project

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Great little quilts from this weeks quilting schedule. The fourth picture is not QUITE a quilt yet but is on my list for the upcoming weekend. These are blocks from all over the place. There are 42 total blocks donated by Mary Kay from Arizona, Evelyn from Canada, Jaynie from Texas, Mary Pat from Wisconsin, Rebecca from Utah, and Lisa from New Zealand. I will build these into a wonky quilt pattern and they will be sent to E-Quilter to be distributed to the people who went thru Sandy, the horrible storm on the East coast. So many are still without homes! It really feels good to give back to people in trouble. I hope to piece, quilt and bind this quilt and get it into the mail next week. Watch for a finished picture.

I had a wonderful time at my David Taylor class last weekend. One of the tips I learned, which I think is fantastic, is how David keeps his quilts perfectly square. Get twill tape (1/4″) from your local fabric store. Measure your quilt carefully and pin a piece of twill tape from exact corner to other corner. Do opposing sides as step 1 and 2. Be sure to pin the twill take carefully, ends, then middle, then split the difference as many times as you need to. Sew with a straight line stitch making sure the tape is right along the edge and does not extend into your quilt where the binding will not cover it. Then, measure the other two sides, excluding the first tape, pin as you did the others and stitch. THOSE EDGES AREN’T GOING ANYWHERE ANYMORE AND WILL ALWAYS BE EXACTLY THE SAME! No more uneven edges to bug you or quilt judges!

BE HAPPY…..Karen

HAPPY VALENTINES DAY! and freebie notice

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A big Valentine hug to everyone! Hopes for lots of candy, dinner out, and especially quilty stuff!  A great pattern for hearts is a free download on Sarah Vedeler Designs site.  She is the designer that has designed the BOM for The Quilt Show for 2013.  She has made hers out of the Dupioni Silk fabric mix that is available in quilt stores (at least thats what it looks like to me).  It is very nice, modern, and very colorful.  Take a look at her site.   www.sarahvedelerdesigns.danemcoweb.com/    Click on the SHOP tab and scroll down to the Free Downloads pic, click there and you’ll find the heart quilt.  I love color!

New tool – to me! Well I finally stopped by the closest Harbor Freight in Sugar Land. Forever I have been wanting to stop by and pick up some 18″ long magnets that help hold the quilt tops I am quilting. I did manage to get several and really like them. BUT, as important, hanging right next to my magnets was a small magnetic wrist band.  It has wide elastic with a velcro closure and is advertised to hold screws, etc. that one might be working with.  HOWEVER, look how wonderful it is to hold a small pair of thread snipping scissors as well as pins.  FANTASTIC…this way I always have my scissors, don’t always need a pin cushion handy, and don’t have a pair of scissors poking me in the “girls”!  Whoo Hoo!  What a find.  I love both things!  Probably only longarmers would use the magnets but the wrist band is super!  I have researched and find that the claim of a magnet near our computerized machines not being good is a false assumption.magnets in use

Packaging of long magnets

Magnets in Use on My Longarm

magnets

My fantastic new find – the wristband.  It is truly comfortable!

wrist magnet

Until Later…BE HAPPY ….Karen

TESTING A MACHINE APPLIQUE TECHNIQUE

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I have been wanting to test this machine applique technique for a long time. I also have wanted to work on this quilt “Red Delicious” by Esther Alieu. It is all done in multiple red prints and I just love the finished product. That being said, however, I just don’t have the time to needle turn applique and have watched Sharon Schamber use this technique of applique on most of her award winning quilts. The pieces are prepared with a specific foundation and edge turned with Elmer’s Glue. Here is the biggy…using monofilament you machine stitch a very small blanket stitch around all edges. As a prep Sharon instructs you to wash all of your applique fabric but NOT the background fabric. After completing the machine stitching you soak the block – this disintegrates the foundation into a soft fibre – and let the block dry. The background fabric, because it has not been prewashed, will shrink just a tad and thereby pull the stitching under so that it is completely invisible. Thats how it’s supposed to work anyway. I will soak my block tonight and let you know tomorrow how it does. I hope the picture of the bird is close enough for you to see the stitching before it is soaked. On this bird I was experimenting with the stitching. I started with a simple zig zag stitch but wasn’t happy with the way the thread pulled to the top no matter what tension adjustments I made. I then changed to a very small blanket (1.0/1.0) and it looks lots better. We will see tomorrow…..

Meanwhile, off to lunch with some good friends and then to the local quilt shop to deliver a couple of quilts.

Until later, BE HAPPY!

Karen

I love Purple!

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Isabelle's 8yr. Grandson's quilt

Isabelle’s 8yr. Grandson’s quilt

P1030678 (2)Caitlin

Champ on his "throne"

Champ on his “throne”

 

 

 

 

 

Boy, I sure wish I could figure out how to place these pictures so they make more sense.  Today has been long, gray and dreary here in Houston.  I finally got myself motivated to get some work done and went upstairs to the studio to quilt a customer quilt.  This is a really Purple quilt, trimmed in lime green for Isabelle’s 8 year old grandson.  The next will be another for her 11 year old grandson.  That’s on the schedule for tomorrow.  Also costuming away today – more solo costumes.  I decided to quilt this one with bicycles figuring all eight year olds love their bikes.  Hope you can see the bike in the picture.

When I quilt, as usual, Champ and Caitlin are upstairs with me.  Champ has his own sofa and you best not sit on it or he will “box” you to death.  Caitlin has a huge pillow under one of my work tables.

Stayed home today from my usual Tuesday schedule because we were scheduled to get some really mean rain – barely a drop came of course.  We even had Flash Flood Warnings.  Sigh….

Tomorrows another day….meanwhile, BE HAPPY!

Karen