Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Bursting Buds by Pam Bono

This is a Pam Bono piece and it's quite large; lots and lots of pieces both small and large and machine quilted. I am working on my skills in that area and unfortunately I made an error in selecting the thread for the project. It's a variegated Sulky thread which shows up very dark on the light parts of the runner and quite light on the dark parts. I'm not sure which would have been the better choice but it's done now and there isn't too much I can do other than making a better selection next time. Overall I am pleased with the results. Batiks worked very well although the background is very light. I selected all of these from webfabrics.net and even with a design wall, it's an inexact science to buy coordinating fabrics on line. Most of the time I have good results but every now and then, things just don't come together as you might hope. That's the sacrifice you make when you choose good prices over hands-on buying.
On a related topic...I am hoping to make Storm At Sea in the next year and thought I would go to the above mentioned website and request that they take a look at the pattern I am going to use and help me with fabric choice. I described the color way I was interested in and after a few email exchanges, a photo array of fabrics was emailed to me. I printed it off, looked closely and decided five of the eight were great but requested that they swap out the other three for alternate colors I thought would fit . Their reply was that the colors I wanted would throw off the color contrast and that the quilt wouldn't look right. This from a store with hundreds and hundreds of bolts of fabric to choose from.... So much for the "yes we do this all the time".... I was quite disappointed in the lack of assistance. Too bad for me and for the shop which would have been selling me ten to twelve yards of fabric. I guess business is really good! All things considered though, it's still the best place on line to buy Batiks.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Maritime Beauty and what a beauty it is...

First things first: if you check http://sewkaren-lycreated.blogspot.com, you will see me with this project, along with Wilma and hers...we made them together and sent the photo to the designer who then added it to her blog!!

I like this project more than anything I have done in a long while. Karen Neary has designed this piece and although this is the first time I have used her patterns, it won't be the last. In fact, I can't wait to do another one of this particular design. I love the movement in the piece and I am fascinated with how KN has used this familiar New York Beauty block and adapted it to her own style. It's brilliant. If you have the latest Keepsake Quilting catalogue, you will discover one of Karen's kits. It's done in jewel colors, quite Caribbean in appearance but essentially it's this block combined with squares to create a very dramatic table topper. I haven't seen the pattern by itself; the colors in the kit aren't my favorites...otherwise I would have it...but I suspect it will be available sometime.
This piece is quilted with the blanket stitch and a double top-stitch that I like very much and is done with a variegated Sulky thread. I probably should have done a more dramatic machine quilting but I was afraid my lack of skill in that department might detract from this lovely table topper. I used a bias binding, ready made, prurchased from webfabrics.net. I'm totally sold on bias bindings and often used black as a finishing touch to my projects. I make it up in quantity so it's ready when I need it.