Quilt Class

Not sure how many of you are interested, but thought I’d share a little about that class I took at the quilt festival and what I learned.  The teacher was Sue Nickels, a well known applique quilter who has developed a technique for ‘stitched raw edge applique’ that is very impressive.  I shared one of her quilts with you at the Sister’s show.  She is a really great teacher, but the most fascinating thing (to me) is that she collaborates with her sister Pat Holly on many of their award winning quilts.  Here is a sample of the beautiful work that they do.

This whole quilt was probably only about 15 X 18 inches!

I was interested in this ‘stitched raw edge applique’ because of a little quilt project I started.  Remember I told you I was fascinated with Marianne Burr’s quilts. Well, her quilts are whole cloth quilts that are painted on one piece of fabric and then extensively stitched.  I decided that I wanted to make a little practice quilt to try out some of her techniques.  So I just cut out pieces and ‘raw edge appliqued’ them to the background.  Even as I did it I knew there was a danger that the way I was doing it wasn’t very stable.  Sure enough, as I started hand stitching on them, some of the edging stitches came up almost as if I had perforated the edge of the cloth.  Okay, I know I’m losing most of you.  Here is a picture of  the little quilt I put together, and then a close up of two of the blocks.  I think you can see the edge stitching, which is machine blanket stitch.

So, when I saw that this class was being offered at the festival, I thought it might be a useful technique to learn if I decide to keep working in this direction.

Sue is an accomplished teacher.  She uses a camera pointed at her sewing machine so all the students can see exactly what she is demonstrating.  Cool, huh?

Here’s my little pile of supplies at the beginning of class, including the most important supply–a good cup of coffee!

And the class pattern.

And, my little block.

Yes, it took me six hours to make that one little block.

So, the technique, for those of you still awake, is using a very soft fusible web, cut to 1/4 inch around just the edge of the shape (heart, leaf, etc.)  This permanently sticks the raw edge of the fabric to the background fabric, so when you stitch it never ravels.  But using the soft web, and also only placing it on the edge makes the quilt still look and feel very soft.  Which is what I was trying to achieve by not using the fusible on my little sampler quilt.  So it was a very profitable class for me to take.

For those of you who have gotten this far, I wanted to point you in the direction of a relatively new blogger, but not a new maintainer.  Debra has lost a lot of weight and kept it off for a number of years, and she writes not just from her own personal experience, but backs up what she says with current research and scientific information.  I was MOST impressed with her blog.  Oh here’s one of my favorite things that she said:

I like to think of Insulin as the party slut.  She dances with all the Ose brothers – Dextr, MonoDextr, Gluc, Sucr, Fruct.  They’re all such sweet boys.  She bounces around inside us, giggling and flirting…

You have to read the whole article to get it in context!  The information she presents should be required reading for anyone interested in losing weight and keeping it off.  If any of you read Refuse to Regain, you might recognize Debra’s name as a frequent commenter on  that blog.

Over and out.  I’ll be back tomorrow!


14 thoughts on “Quilt Class

  1. appreciate the link for Debra – always glad to find another maintenance blogger and it is a doubly good find as she is just starting it is possible to catch up from the very beginning posts.

    I personally (used to) use the ‘just the edges’ fuse technique when I was machine appliquing (like button hole stitch around something folky or Christmasy) or padding/stuffing applique (thin layer of batting basted under the applique piece to make it puff). Not wild about it for hand applique (myself).

    LOVED the pics and the information. Am I the only reader with quilt background? And mine is all background. I don’t quilt any more. But I do get projects ready for my mom, who likes the handwork, so I suppose that counts as still having my hand ‘in’ a bit.

    said with a smile – no dogs and no food – in this posting.

    • I agree–it would be miserable to try to hand-stitch anything through fusible. I forgot that was the other reason I didn’t want to use it at first. Because I had only ever fused the whole emblem, and that wouldn’t work for all the hand stitching I wanted to add.

      I think there are still a couple of other quilters who read. And yes, I thought it odd to write a post and not talk about food or dogs.

  2. Debby, loved the link to Debra’s blog. As a regainer attempting to get back to goal and stay there. My downfall has always been maintenance, so I’m already trying to learn how to walk the fine line between getting there and staying there. Sometimes the blogs of current maintainers are more helpful than those still in the losing mode. Always share links to maintainers that are helping you. Thanks, Sharon

  3. So I have not one single creative bone in my body. But I sure did enjoy seeing what you’ve done!

    Also, (because I’m behind on blogs) I enjoyed seeing your version of Lori’s oats. I think she made a version of your salad last night! Isn’t blogging fun?

    • Yes it is fun! Who knows what I’d be eating if I didn’t have the blogs for inspiration. Got your broccoli beef recipe bookmarked to try!

  4. I can’t believe how tiny that top quilt is!! So pretty though.

    I know nothing about quilting – maybe one of these days when my kids and my job aren’t such a time suck I’ll be able to start. I love to sew, so that just seems to be a natural progression.

    Okay, going to check out Debra’s blog now…

    • Yes, you would love it if you like to sew. When I started quilting, I didn’t know how to use a sewing machine, and at first I HATED it. Now I love hand and machine sewing.

  5. My great grandmother did quilting. Unfortunately, none of quilts survived because they were well worn with use and love, which maybe really isn’t a bad thing.

    I have a problem when I get a new hobby. I can’t just do it for an hour or 2 when I get a chance. I have to work and work until I finish a project. Kind of defeats the purpose of it being a hobby LOL.

    And yay for another maintainer blog!

    • I agree that that is a good thing about your grandmother’s quilts. I really like making things that will be used. Still, it would have been nice to be able to see them, huh.

      Hah, evidently you and I aren’t twinsies in that area. I do like to work a lot on my hobbies. However, I don ‘t seem to be compelled to finish a project once it is started. I always have multiple projects going at one time. Then I finally feel compelled to finish some of them. Which is what I am doing today!

  6. I’m not a quilter, but I enjoy reading your posts about them. I love quilts and appreciate the hard work that goes into them. My grandmother was a skillful quilter and I’m lucky to have a double wedding ring quilt she did. She called it her “chocolate quilt,” because the fabrics were all in various shades of brown. 🙂

    And I’m always glad to hear about another maintaining blog…scurrying over to check it out!

    • Dashing back for a moment to say: Oh, my gosh! You weren’t kidding about Debra’s blog being required reading for maintainers! Thanks so much for pointing us her way. (And I adore her mantra: “Live joyfully most of the time, eat healthfully most of the time, exercise most days and treasure whatever body happens.”)

      • Oh, so glad you like! And I hadn’t even read her mantra yet–so much to read and take in. I love it as well, might even print it out and use as refrigerator art!

  7. I appreciate quilts so much…can you tell that I’m an appreciator and not a sewer? Your quilt with all the suns and swirls is really cool – I always love it when you post pictures of your work. 🙂

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