Friday, April 19, 2019

Show + Tell :: The Calling

April 19 2019,

Well, well, well, that didn't take long, "The Calling" is finished. I think I started this at the beginning of April and within a few weeks I have a finished piece. If you want to read more about the process, please read the previous post.

So this was quilted with Aurifil 12 weight in orange, Aurifil 50 weight in gray and teal, and Valdani size 8. At the time of hand quilting this, the only 12 weight was orange. My conclusion for the king size quilt is that I will use 12 weight in orange, light gray, and gray, and 50 weight in teal, and maybe dark blue. I will also use Valdani size 8 gray to outline the printed fabric.

I didn't know how to quilt the printed fabric part, so I ended up outlining it in gray and making crosses in the circles. I hope it is enough quilting to hold up. I may have other ideas when the time comes on what to do with that area.

Oh yah, this is my first quilt that I actually faced the quilt! OMG. I have been trying to figure this out for years, all the instructions just didn't make any sense to me except for one, just one. It's from Joe Cunningham and he has a youtube about it. So go check it out and see how easy it is to face a quilt. Yipppppeeee!

Oh, I don't have those wonder clips, and usually I don't need clips when I do my binding. But when I faced it, it was more difficult, so all I have was clothes pin and I used it. It was a bit wonky, but it got the job done.

I'm waiting for the long armer to baste the king size quilt, and that will be my next hand project.

Title: The Calling
Dimension: 27" x 31"
Materials: Kona Solid Cotton, Polka Dot Fabric by Riley Blake Designs, Piecing with Aurifil 50 weight thread, quilted with Mettler 50 weight
Method: Machine Pieced + Machine Quilted
Date completed: 03.2019

Quilt & Bitch

Monday, April 8, 2019

Sneak Peek :: The Calling

April 8 2019,

After the quilt top was done for the king size quilt, silly me found a few pieces of the Aboriginal fabric. I don't remember why I had not used it up. At this point I started to research on the difference between regular hand quilting and big stitch quilting. If you know me, you wouldn't be surprise, because of course I never do anything without hours of research.

I realized that I should make a quilt to test out the threads. Below is my 31" x 28" sampler using the leftover fabrics. This way I can try my hand on big stitch quilting.

The batting here is polyester.

The next step was to pin in.

The pinning did not take long. 

After pinning it, I started to hand quilt with the Aurifil 12 weight thread.

I didn't get far because the thread kept on getting stuck on the pins. Back to the drawing board. I unpinned everything and basted the quilt. Because the quilt is small, I basted it haphazardly and mostly in one direction. Technically it should be in two directions, up and down, left and right.

At that moment, I had a light bulb moment. Ah - ah. That's why people don't pin their quilts! The thread gets stuck on the freakin' pin. I was taught to baste the quilts, but never knew the reason why. After 14 years, it finally occurred to me.

After researching on what thread and needle to use, I decided to buy Valdani size 8 perle cotton. I bought 6 skeins of gray. Each skein is approximately 72 yards. At this point, I have no idea how many yards I need, 6 skeins sounded good to me.Below is the Valdani thread, you can't see where the quilting is. I plan to use this thread to outline / quilt the Aboriginal fabric.

While waiting for shipment to come, my friend gave me an Aurifil 12 weight thread to try. Oh boy, did I fall in love. I should have known from the beginning, that Aurifil was not going to let me down. I had already bought the Valdani perle cotton thread. From a cost point of view the Valdani was $5.50 for 72 yards and for Aurifil, $13.00 for 356 yards, it was more economical to use the Aurifil. Below is what the big stitch quilting looks with the Aurifil thread 

Speaking of economical, I also bought DMC pearl cotton thread size 5 to test it. The cost was $1.69 for 27 yards. I just calculated it, and realize that it is the same price in terms of yardage with the Valdani. Keep in mind, that this was more readily available than the Valdani, and also when I bought the DMC one, it was not on sale.

DMC Pearl Cotton Size 5
I tried stitching a row of it and gave up. It was too thick and I did not like the look of it. I had originally wanted to try the DMC pearl cotton size 5, but the store did not have it in gray.

DMC Pearl Cotton Size 5
Back to the drawing board. The only Aurifil 12 weight thread I had was my friend's. I have tons of 50 weight thread that I have accumulated over the years, but no 12 weight. So I did some experimenting. how would 50 weight Aurifil look if I used it to hand quilt? It's not too bad. It has a delicate look to it.

For quilting in the Aurifil 50 weight, I have been using Richard Hemming & Son Large Eye Needles Sharps in Size 11. This is what I usually use to applique with. I find the length and the thinness of it to be perfect for the 50 weight. I am still testing out needle size for the Aurifil size 12 and Valdani Pearle Cotton.

Hubby prefers the 12 weight. I still debating on weight and cost. For a king size quilt, it's going to be a lot of thread. I have put in a phone call to a store and am awaiting the cost of it.

I will most likely go with Aurifil 50 weight on the gray and dark blue pieces, Valdani 8 weight on the Aboriginal fabric, Aurifil 12 weight on the orange and light blue. Decisions, decisions, decisions.

Quilt & Bitch

Saturday, April 6, 2019

Sneak Peek :: King Size Quilt

April 6 2019,

This one is interesting. About three weeks ago, I had a strong urge to hand quilt. After I had finished hand quilting the Untitled quilt, I needed to do more.

In the works at that time was already a king size quilt that was inspired by quilts of Gee's Bend and Bosna Quilts. The 3 yards of fabric was bought about a year ago. It was by M&S Textile called "Women Collecting Water Purple" by Christine Doolan. Again, like most fabrics, it was love at first sight. This is the first time I have bought Aboriginal style fabric, and I remember that my husband had come in with me to the fabric store and had said that the Aboriginal fabrics were awesome. At that shopping trip, I had not bought it, and subsequent shopping trip I decided to buy it.

Below is the king size quilt made of solids in grays, blues and oranges and the Aboriginal style fabric.

This was originally suppose to be machine quilted. I had a friend over who saw the half pieced quilt, and she said, "No, this quilt should not be machine quilted, this quilt should be hand quilted."

That sparked another journey. After deciding that I wanted to hand quilt it, I had to research on batting. I have always hand quilted with polyester, because it is much easier on the fingers. I remember one year I had quilted a wall hanging with cotton batting, it was a disaster. The quilt top was made out of Japanese fabrics. After doing a tenth of it, I gave up and gave it away. It was way too difficult. Since that episode, I do not hand quilt with 100% cotton batting. My batting of preference is Thermore by Hobbs. It quilts like butter even with batik fabrics.

I decided not to use Thermore for this particular project because I wanted to make this into a bed quilt. Through researching of other people's experiences, I decided to try Hobb's Tuscany Collection Silk Batting. So I bought that online and waited for it to come in.

At this point, the top was 90" x 101". I had bought the king size batting which is suppose to be 120" x 120". From past experience, the actual size of the batting  is much more than what is advertised. So this one came in at 124" x 133". I waited to determine the quilt top size because I wanted to maximize the batting.

After the calculation was done, I needed to figure out what I wanted to do for the backing. I usually piece my backs. For this one, I decided to buy wide back, and settled on Kona Wide Fabrics. The width of the fabric is 108".

Knowing the measurements for the batting and the backing, the final quilt top size is now 101" x 120". 101" because of the width of the backing and 120" because of the width of the batting. Yes, call me crazy.

After all that was figured out, I realized I did not have the endurance to baste it by hand. I called a local long armer and she said she can baste it for me. Ta-dah. I will be dropping this at the long armer and my one to two year journey of hand quilting this sucker will start.

I hope I have the stamina and the will to do it.

This quilt has yet to have a name. In a year or two it will have a name, and hopefully will reflect my journey.

Quilt & Bitch

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Show + Tell :: Untitled

April 2 2019,

This quilt was a recent finished. A lady in the area contacted our quilt guild asking if someone could finish a quilt her mother started but never finished. After months of nobody responding, I decided to use my hand quilting skills and contacted the family.

It was a 60" x 60" traditional wall hanging.

I contacted her and took the project on.

It wasn't too difficult, everything was basted and marked. The middle part was all done. I quilted the outer parts, binded, made a sleeve and a label. All in all in took approximately 25 hours.

In return I asked for a donation to my quilt guild. A check of $100.00 was given to the quilt guild for this work.

This has inspired me to come back to hand quilting.

Quilt & Bitch

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Show + Tell :: Peace Out On My Spaceship

March 12 2019,

A happy quilt! Definitely different from the past few ones I've made.

This quilt was inspired from a two things. First and foremost, from the artist Yayoi Kusama. Second, from the book called "East Meets West Quilts: Explore Improv with Japanese-Inspired Designs" by Patricia Belyea.

I used her ""Hachi Quilt Manifesto" but instead of using 8" I used 4" blocks. I wanted this to be an orange and blue quilt. I focused my solids on those two colors. There are two or three shades of orange, one yellow, and two or three shade of blues.

From the beginning, there was no real plan. The main parameter was that it had to be less than 90" (the quilt guild's maximum quilt size for this coming May's show).

I made the blocks, knowing I needed a total of 250 squares everything was send and done. I did not count how many pieces of each color / style I had, I just counted the total. After it was pieced, my first attempt at laying it out was a disaster. I had done it randomly. Hubby said that it did not work, because it was way to random and busy.

I scrapd the beginnings of that I started playing again with the layout. Satisfied with the layout, I pieced it together.

This quilt took 9 days from start to finish. The quilting was very minimal.

A special thanks again to Laura for coming with the name of the quilt. 

Title: Peace Out On My Spaceship
Dimension: 70" x 90"
Materials: Kona Solid Cotton, Polka Dot Fabric by Riley Blake Designs, Piecing with Aurifil 50 weight thread, quilted with Mettler 50 weight
Method: Machine Pieced + Machine Quilted
Date completed: 03.2019

Quilt & Bitch

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Show + Tell :: Making a Statement :: F*CK F*CK

February 26 2019,

* Content Warning - This post may contain language and pictures that maybe offensive to some readers. You have been warned * 

So here's a second quilt that I made with the stamping. The second one is called "Making A Statement :: FUCK FUCK", how original. You can see the first "Making A Statement :: FUCK".

This one was created because I had a lot of leftover stamped fabrics. Again, I focused my negative energy into this quilt. The second half of 2018 was trying and exasperating, thus another negative quilt, it's the same story as the "Point of View" quilt.

The quilting lines are tighter than the first quilt, and again I did the quilting the hard way by moving the quilt in the direction I was sewing instead of learning how to ruler quilt. I think I better start learning how to do that. I have everything ready, and I did 15 minutes of practice and gave up. Thus, I didn't get far and my stitches were ugly.

My next quilt, is very different from the last 3 quilts. You'll be surprise that it is even the same person making the quilt.

Title: Making A Statement :: FUCK FUCK
Dimension: Approximately 42" x 42"
Materials: Kona Solid Cotton, Piecing with Aurifil 50 weight thread, quilted with Mettler 50 weight
Method: Machine Pieced + Machine Quilted
Date completed: 02.2019

Quilt & Bitch

Monday, January 21, 2019

Show + Tell :: Point Of View

January 21 2019,

New Year! New Quilt!

The title of this quilt was originally called "Making A Statement :: Every Story Has Two Sides". My friend Laura, thought it was too literal and not sexy enough. She came up with "Point of View".

"Point of View"

Detail of "Point Of View"
The quilt uses the technique of fine line piecing, similar to the "Conduit", "The Village", "Going On A Trip II", and a few others. This came about with Laura got "The Village" quilt, where the back side of the quilt top was outward facing, so that you see the raw edge of the fine line piecing. Laura also mentioned that the quilt would look good in black and white. Thus, the creation of this quilt.

This sparked an idea where I could integrate half of the right side and half of the wrong side together. The blocks where the white is dominant, is the right side, the the blocks where the black is dominant, is the other side, to create the story line of different sides.

This was created and inspired due to the turmoil on the executive board of director of my quilt guild, that started this past summer and still continues till today. Some of you may remember the post called " 'Nuf Said :: I Don't Care" where I was really upset.

After spending a day writing and appliqueing the story to the back of the quilt, below is the final result. I know no one is going to sit there and read it, but the story is there.

Title: Point of View
Dimension: 49" x 71"
Materials: Cotton Batik, Aurifil 50 weight thread
Method: Machine Pieced + Machine Quilted
Date completed: 01.2019

Quilt & Bitch