There are two essential skills which go hand-in-hand with piecing - quilting & applique, and this week I've had a bit of a go at both. Lucky for me, Harriet Hargrave has excellent books on both techniques - Heirloom Machine Quilting and Mastering Machine Applique.
Knowing that I have a load of quilting coming up very soon, I've been playing around with designs and ways of transfering them. My husband made me a light box, which is excellent and makes tracing so much easier.
Remember the very first quilt I made from the QA book? It was the quilt that grew - it was supposed to be a small panel quilt, but my panels were large and retangular, which required modification to the pattern. Anyway, as I've decided not to put borders on this top, (it's big enough thank you) I've gone straight ahead to the quilting design.
The design is a simple one from Harriet's book. I've practised it a bit but am going to need more before working on the quilt top. The rest of the top I'll probably just stitch-in-the-ditch.
The pattern reflects the one in the panel (which you can't really see in this pic).
On to Applique
For some reason, I was finding getting started on applique work rather intimidating. I think it was because of all the different techniques available I was confused and didn't know were to start - so I didn't!
Finally last night, I sat down with a pattern, some freezer paper and a bunch of fabric scraps and set to work.
I found the process rather enjoyable. It's really fiddly but no where near as difficult as I thought it would be. Again, I chose a simple pattern from Harriet's book, played around with some colouring-in, then picked up my scissors and got to it. It took a couple of hours, and the points aren't pretty, but for a very first attempt, I'm rather pleased with the result.
I used freezer paper templates, cut the fabric to 3/16" then pressed it over. Not a single burn to my fingers either!
These are still loose pieces, which I've simply laid out. When I get a chance, I'll set it up on some backgroud fabric and start stitching.
THE NEXT PROJECT
I haven't completely neglected the next projct in the QA series, I just haven't progressed very far yet. I've only made 3 blocks, which is slow going as it's a more labour intensive design. I'm hoping to have half the blocks done tomorrow and can start putting up some pics.