Quilter's Academy - Volume 2 - Sophomore Year

Vol 3 - Junior Year

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Project 10 - Double Nine Patch

Whoo Hoo - here I am at Project 10 which is well underway.  I added a single border, selected my design, marked the top, sandwiched, basted and ditch stitched it and am now ready for the free motion.

All marked up and ready for the machine

I've chosen a simple sunflower design for this, for obvious reasons.  There are 3 components to quilt with the design, the circle, the inner petals then the outer petals.  Um, actually there are 4 with the little lines on the petals and ..oh.. the griding in the centre makes 5!

I needed to use the light-box to trace this, and reassured by Harriet that it will wash out clean, I marked the top with a blue marker.  I used a Mark-Be-Gone marker and I love this!  The lines are bright, not too fine and so easy to see.  I tried it on a sample and the lines disappeared instantly when I popped it into a sink of cold water.  Not the case with the red quilter's crayon I also tested - even after an overnight soak the red markings were quite visible and had even bled into the fabric a bit.  It will need soap and I suspect some rubbing to remove the lines completely.

Sadly, I managed to dry the Mark-Be-Gone marker out and had to try other makers to finish.  I wish I could remember where I got it - I didn't even realise I had it until I went rummaging around.  The Roxanne's Quilter's Choice pencil in silver worked well and I also had another go with the Clover pencils.  I even managed to figure out why the pencils kept breaking - no I wasn't pressing too hard - the pencil leads would simply pull out of the top of the pencil as soon as I sharpened them.  In frustration I bought a Clover pencil sharpener, and the problem was solved.  Why a normal pencil sharpener causes the leads to break inside the wood I have no idea, but I think now I am covered in the marking department.

There are a total of 25 of these sunflower designs to free-motion on the quilt top.

I am a little nervous about free motion on this top, as there is lots of white space and the quilting is going to show!  There is not a lot of busy prints for my quilting to hide in, so I hope I can get it together and do a decent job.  After the sunflowers are done, I'll do a diagonal grid across the top, working through the centre of each flower.  I fiddled around with border stencils a lot until I finally decided on simple channel quilting, working diagonally from the centre of each border in opposing angles.  Drawing this up was an interesting exercise for me, getting the angles and lines to fit properly.  I hope to sort it out when the time comes to sew.

For this quilt I'm using Matilda's Own 100% cotton batting, Sew Art .004 nylon in the needle, Gutterman cotton in the bobbin and a size 70 Microtex needle, then switching to Coats & Clark Star Egyptian cotton for the border work.

The quilting essentials!

Learning from my experience with the previous quilt, where I suffered pleats and tucks, because I chose to use a basting spray and not ditch stitch first - I did an all-over SITD with this one.

Again taking advice from Harriet (and why wouldn't I, since that's what this blog's all about) I didn't use the edge foot for ditch stitching, but switched to an open toe applique foot.  Now the edge foot is great but with this foot, I can see exactly where the needle is going and finished all the SITD with (almost) no glitches.

Open toe applique foot for ditch stitching

Look Ma - no pleats!

I wanted to share the finished quilt with you all.  I can't believe how far I've come with my quilting since I did the first one - back in March I think.  It just shows what practice can do - organising the lessons so that all the quilting comes one after the other is genius - not only is my work improving, but I'm enjoying the process more and more. 

Finished, washed and laid out to dry

The little bit of stippling makes the hearts pop up

Lots of shrinkage and wrinkling with this one - unwashed fabric and cotton batting will give this look

From the back

It's still wet and pre-wrinkled!


  1. I am so impressed with your work. Watching your progress is so interesting, it has made me [almost] speechless.
    Well done!!!!!

  2. I am continually impressed by your work - and in awe. I think the quilting patterns you've chosen for the past two projects are quite lovely.

    Your blog has inspired me to try this as well - as a complete newbie to quilting - though I have sewn items like curtains and dog pillows and even one purse in the recent past. I've done counted cross stitch for over 30 years and love needlework in general.

    Yesterday I received my copies of the Quilter's Academy Freshman and Sophomore years and am itching to get started - once Hockey Season ends for my son this weekend.

    Cheers, Kirsten

  3. Thank you so much ladies. I sometimes can't believe how far I've come either, as I'm pretty new to sewing too. Harriet is a brilliant teacher.

    CorgiNole, good for you! Please blog your work, I'd love to watch how you get along. Blogging is a great way to document your progress, and get extra advice from experienced quilters too.

  4. Great Posts...Love to see how you are setting up your Quilting...as a Newie you really have gone in Guns Blazing...Good for You...after 12yrs I'm still teaching myself to Stipple...I'm a bit slow at some things.lol.

  5. Kudos, Kudos, KUDOS Lesley!!!! Bravo- look you go! My word- you have really been working hard and the results are just beautiful!!!! Wow! This is just fabulous- and what an incredible example if one sets their mind to learning (and we are from the Best, Harriet!) what can be accomplished!
    Just love how your quilting is turning out so nice!
    And if I understand right- you are doing all this while in the process of either getting ready to move into a new home or are already unpacking the new home? Again- Bravo!

  6. Hi Annie

    Yes, I'm moving house - my sewing area has been downsized to a corner in the living room and I'm marooned in a sea of boxes. Sewing is my escape from the chaos! The actual moved has been delayed for another 3 weeks.

    How are your projects going? Will we get a new blog post soon? (hint hint)?

  7. Yes- new blog coming this week, got unexpectedly sidelined from my sewing projects, but I'm back up to par now. Check out your most recent post- you and I are on the same path with getting better equipment (I can't believe we ended up with the same "new" to us machines!

    I do hope to catch up quickly as the next volume is out and am anxious to get back into the swing of things and move it a long. Sewing is such a great form of therapy for me and a great escape from all the chaos you are going through with the move.

    Look for a much overdue updated blog sometime this coming week from me- Sunday I will be putting the "new" machines to work! Hope to show my latest project -sucessfully - I pray!lol!

    Again- so very impressed with your incredible progress! Keep up the wonderful work! You are a true inspiration to all!

  8. Hi Annie - I do seem to progress fairly rapidly, but when indulging a passion (husband calls it an obsession)it's no hardship. I'm simply doing what I love to do.

    I'll keep an eye on your blog for the lastest update. Have you seen book 2 yet? I'm anxiously awaiting my copy - but don't want to get distracted back to piecing just yet. I still have 3 1/2 quilts to finish!