Monday, September 29, 2014

My Tweets, hand applique

After last weeks UFO unveiling it seemed only right to work towards reducing the pile.   So I chose the UFO most appealing to the eye.
My Tweets By Erin Russek.  As far as UFO's go, this one is just a toddler at 3yrs old.  
 For the most part I stayed with the color palette in the pattern.  Making a few changes to some of the color placement.  And tweaking the design in a couple blocks.   
This BOM was free for one year on Erin's blog One Piece at A Time and then to finish the quilt we needed to purchase the center block, Miss Kelley.  The wonderful thing about Erin's BOM's is she also shares tips and tutorials along the way. 
Here's what the finished quilt would look like if I could stick to a pattern.   My quilt will have different sashing and borders, I'm thinking of omitting the border applique..maybe.  My redesign is still in the idea stage.
I've made a couple different small projects from the pattern.   The one below was made for momma for Valentines Day.  I call it Valentine Tweet.  It was block 2 in the series.  The border was designed from one of Erin's Tutorials. 
 And this one is made from the center medallion.  Both of the smaller projects were machine appliqued.  
One of the reasons this quickly became a UFO is HAND APPLIQUE.   I'm using FUFU's  machine embroidery thread for the hand stitching.  Several years ago I purchased an embroidery machine and a large variety of threads.  The machine gets little use, except for the occasional quilt label.  But the finer threads have come in handy.  It melts into the fabric much nicer than regular threads and is easier to get through the eye of needle.  At first I was leery of using a shiny thread, fearing that my stitches would show.  You never know until you try, and it came out beautifully.  Many quilters use applique sharp needles but I find they distort the fabric, causing puckers.    I'm using hand quilting needles #10  and #12.   I know most of you are curling up your nose at the thought of such a tiny needle, but really once you get the hang of using them you don't even notice the size.  
This combination of needle and thread make the stitching invisible.  Another thing that helps me reduce puckers is hoop-less stitching.  When I first started hand applique a few years ago I found that hoops offered false tension security.  My applique always puckered.  Going hoop-less let's me know immediately if I'm pulling the thread to taunt.  Of course learning the proper way to stitch also greatly improved the overall look.
Below is the incorrect way to take a stitch.  See how the needle comes out on the front of the applique?   I've seen so many quilters do this and then try to pull the stitch tight in order to hide it thus causing puckers and distortions to the block.
The stitch below is correct.  The needle should be somewhere between where the fabric folds over and the back of the applique piece.  Pinching the fabric layers between my thumb and forefinger as the stitch is pulled through, keep pinching until the stitch is complete.  It doesn't take much tension to make the stitch disappear.
 TADA!  No puckers and no stitches showing.  One more tip is glue basting.  No pins for distorting fabric and poking my fingers.  In my humble opinion it's the best thing since sliced bread.  I've heard quilters complain saying its to hard to pull the needle through.  So  my second tip would be, you're using to much glue too close to the edge.  It only takes a very small amount and then set the glue with an iron.  Here's a video link to Erin's method of glue basting.   
Well I'm a few stitches closer to the finish....10 blocks stitched down and one in the process.  
 Only one more block before tackling the center Medallion.  Now how many of you noticed the dreaded purple?  For those of you that are new to my blog, I really DISLIKE PURPLE so using it this quilt was a huge decision.  Too late to turn back now!

~ Lea Anne ~










Pin It

31 comments:

  1. Your blocks are beautiful! The color choices, the design... the collection. What a happy, cheerful quilt. Good for you for tackling this one! I need to start another applique project after seeing yours. I miss doing it!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for the tips and the pictures with them. Your quilt is going to be gorgeous.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I like what you did with the individual blocks and finishing into a wall hanging. Especially the Valentine piece.
    I find it interesting to know what type needle you use for your applique stitching. Would not be easy for a person with arthritis to use that type needle but it works well for you.

    ReplyDelete
  4. You do wonderful hand work and that will be a lovely quilt. I love hand applique (both to do and to look at), so thanks for all the info in this post.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thanks! I needed that! Wish I'd read it yesterday! Love the purple! I have like 5 pieces of purple fabric because I dislike it so much but in this quilt, it's perfect! I'm still going to make a list of UFO's like you did. Also, love the "toddler" comment....lol.lol.lol. Thanks for sharing! XO

    ReplyDelete
  6. These are gorgeous! and guess what? I use my little quilting betweens for applique too! :) I am used to them, and use them for just about everything...:)

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thanks for sharing you applique tip. I've never heard that before and it's very good to know.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Go Lea Anne Go. I had the best time doing this BOM and learned new techniques. Now it is 'resting' in the closet waiting until I get better on my longarm before I quilt it. Hope to see your's finished soon!
    Liz A

    ReplyDelete
  9. Really beautiful work, Lee Anne. Your photos and tips are great, too. I always learn something when I read your blog. I hope you learn to love the purple. It really is pretty.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Your blocks are gorgeous!

    I really disliked purple, too, until one day in very early spring after a rough winter, weather-wise and otherwise. I was driving home, and there, in the soggy bleak gray world, was a riot of purple crocuses. They were just what I needed, and I've loved purple ever since then. Maybe some day you'll have a day like that - maybe not. If you really hate those blocks when they're all done, I'll gladly take them off your hands!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Woould you feel better about "that" colour if you thought of it as different shades of blue? The applique is lovely though, especially the two mini's you made from the pattern.

    ReplyDelete
  12. lovely -- hope you are able to continue the progress -- just finished a "young" UFQ (I call them) myself -- good feeling!!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Oh, so gorgeous! I love applique, but lack the time and patience to do it by hand - and really admire those who both can and do! This is wonderful....I love your blocks!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I can't believe it is already three years since this project came out! I bought it, but never started it. I did, however, just see a beautiful hand quilted version at a show earlier this month.

    Your colours are gorgeous! They just glow. Good choice for the next finish!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Beautiful - and a great description of blind stitch, I love it, hand appliqué is so satisfying (and I don't use a hoop either!). Never tried glue basting though, thanks for the tip! (I usually baste.)

    ReplyDelete
  16. Visiting from Lily's Quilts' Fresh Sewing Day - what wonderful appliqué, and a good explanation of the blind appliqué stitch!

    ReplyDelete
  17. you will learn to love purple, doesn't it look great on your piece?

    ReplyDelete
  18. Your appliqué work is beautiful, and I love the overall color pallette for your fabrics!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Your blocks are beautiful -even with the dreaded purple. I'm that way about pink myself, but I still end up using it more than I would have thought, and it always turns out great. I really love the blue piece you did from the center medallion. How are you using/displaying it?

    ReplyDelete
  20. Love these blocks! Your colors choices are great!

    ReplyDelete
  21. It looks lovely, even for purple. Funny thing, being a new follower I had just had the thought that you must like purple only to learn in the next sentence you don't. I feel purple is fine - in other peoples projects.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Your blocks are looking fantastic, Lea Anne! You know you're making me feel guilty, now, because your My Tweets UFO is reminding me of my own hand applique UFO from one of Erin's BOMs, the Jingle BOM that I started last year. I finished all of the blocks, but then like you I decided I didn't want to follow the suggested layout and I kind of petered out in design confusion about what I wanted to do and stuck the blocks on a shelf while I started new projects. It doesn't help that I'm pretty sure one of the fabrics that I used for my berries and birds in EVERY SINGLE BLOCK is going to bleed all over the background when the finished quilt is washed. That really saps my motivation, you know? Yet I keep on using fabric without checking for colorfastness first, so go figure! Congratulations for getting your mojo back on this one, and good luck seeing it through to the end, purple and all!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Beautiful blocks! They look like a lot of work, but it's going to be a gorgeous finished quilt.

    ReplyDelete
  24. It is a beautiful applique UFO. I love the purple too! I agree with you I think I would leave out the outside border and do something else and let the center of the quilt do the singing for you. The tiny heart border on the little quilt is adorable too.I enjoy the hand work of applique and hand quilting. I don't use a hoop for applique either...I find it just gets in the way! Good luck getting this UFO to completion. After all that work, will you hand quilt it?

    ReplyDelete
  25. Your blocks are beautiful. I love that you make changes to the pattern. It makes what you work on very uniques. No one else will have that quilt or any of those blocks. I really have to start thinking out of the box.

    ReplyDelete
  26. I have been eyeing Erin's pattern. You have done a terrific job. I am practicing my applique. I, also, do not like pinning as they drop in the carpet. Ouch. Thanks for the tips on needles, thread and glue.

    ReplyDelete
  27. You are doing a great job on the applique. Love the fabrics you used. I'm with you on using quilting needles. A little bit of effort getting used to the small size and a needle threader make all the difference!

    ReplyDelete
  28. Lovely blocks and thanks for the applique tips! I will have to try that the next time I am doing some applique!

    ReplyDelete
  29. Gorgeous blocks...I like purple! Thank your for the applique tips.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Your blocks are indeed gorgeous! I love their colors and the motif of the fabrics that you mixed beautifully. And I must say that I admire your workmanship regarding the stitching of those appliqués. :-)

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...