I hope you enjoy your Thanksgiving with family and friends and wonderful traditions!
Here is a beautiful poem written for this month, by a former resident of Derry, NH.
My Sorrow, when she’s here with me,
Thinks these dark days of autumn rain
Are beautiful as days can be;
She loves the bare, the withered tree;
She walks the sodden pasture lane.
Her pleasure will not let me stay.
She talks and I am fain to list:
She’s glad the birds are gone away,
She’s glad her simple worsted grey
Is silver now with clinging mist.
The desolate, deserted trees,
The faded earth, the heavy sky,
The beauties she so truly sees,
She thinks I have no eye for these,
And vexes me for reason why.
Not yesterday I learned to know
The love of bare November days
Before the coming of the snow,
But it were vain to tell her so,
And they are better for her praise.
Back from Quilt Market in Houston, and now we can (finally) share: I was thrilled to be one of the designers asked by Andover Fabrics to create a quilt using the recently released Downton Abbey fabrics! Downton Abbey is such a wonderful series, so of course, the answer was an enthusiastic YES! Luckily my mom, Jean Johnson, and our friend, Marilyn Davis were able to help piece the quilts, and Terry Burris was ready to quilt them!
A box arrived in September and inside were fabrics inspired by the early 1900s to the 20s. It was an easy choice to make; the Nana’s Garden Path twin quilt was made with Lady Mary and the Dowagers fabrics and the bed runner with Lady Edith and Lady Sybill’s fabrics.
The twin quilt (modern hexagons) can be seen in the distance in this picture, taken at the Quilt Market Schoolhouse kickoff session. There were more than 1000 people in attendance! We listened to remarks by the Quilt Market team, then we were treated to an exciting trailer for Downton Abbey! The head of costume production and the head of set designs for Downton Abbey were there to explain the costuming and set design process. It was so interesting to hear about the time period, the fabric choices that suit each character and about the castle itself. Watch some the schoolhouse on YouTube here and here!
Here is our booth; you can see the Bed Runner on the table on the right. These fabrics are so soft and pretty and they are offset by the pretty teal print used in the sashing.
If you would like to make your own Nana’s Garden Path, check out the pattern here. It’s a great way to use 2 1/2″ strips!
I needed a little sunshine-y inspiration in my sewing studio today. How about a bouquet of sunflowers (Pattern #PQD-186)? I purchased an inexpensive set of (3) sunflower stems at my local crafty store and went to work.
I used 1 medium Sunflower Bowl and 2 small Sunflower Bowls for my stitch bouquet!
You can do this too!
Here’s how to do it (see pictures below):
- Dissect the stems to yield a flower, a receptacle (flower back) and a separate stem. I did not need any special tools to do this, (just a firm tug). Set aside the flower to use on another craft project.
- Hot glue the receptacle (inside) to the back of a finished Sunflower Bowl.
- Add hot glue into the mounting hole for the stem before inserting the stem.
- Allow the flowers a few minutes to cool.
Don’t they look cute in this green vase?
By the way, these bowls are shiny, because they have been glazed. See my previous post on glazing here!
We have been having loads of fun with Fabri-Glaze, the Textile Hardener by Innovative Craft Products. We use Fabri-Glaze to seal and stiffen our Sunflower bowls! Ask for it at your local quilt shop!
How we use Fabri-Glaze:
- Apply Fabri-Glaze (in a thin coat) with either a sponge brush or very soft bristle brush. Coat your project completely. If you would like to thin the Fabri-Glaze, add a small amount of water and mix. Fabri-Glaze looks like white glue at first, then dries to a clear coating.
- Coat the project one side at a time, so that you can let the project rest on it’s “dry” side.
- Allow to dry overnight before adding additional coats if needed. For ultra-clear, ultra-glossy results, bake your finished project in a 170F degree oven for 30-40 minutes (place on a clean piece of foil in the oven. You can also speed the drying process by using a heat gun or blow dryer.
- Add a second coat of Fabri-Glaze to your project if you’d like it to resemble ceramic.
- Once you have coated your project with Fabri-Glaze, you can wipe it clean with a damp cloth if needed!
Fabri-Glaze cleans up easily with soap and water while the liquid is still wet. Rinse brushes and containers in running water until clean.
Have fun! -Kris
We just released 2 new patterns in a series called “A Banner Year”. These patterns are meant to be fun to display, easy to piece (featuring Creative Grids rulers), quick to appliqué and simple to quilt.
We decided to call on Terry Burris of Terry Burris Quilting (see her post on these banners ) to give our banners that extra polish that we needed for Spring Quilt Market in Portland!
We asked Terry to quilt these banners in a way that quilters (using their short arms like me) could do! So here are Terry’s keys to Winter Welcome success:
1. Stitch in the ditch to stabilizer your quilt. Terry used clear monofilament in the top thread. I really like Aurifil’s monofilament for this.
2. Stiching around your main appliques will make them POP! You can choose to empahsize small details also – like stitching beside the netting on the snow shoes. This provided definition needed for this simple design.
3. Fills – Terry did not employ fills – I think she made the right choice!
4. Planned designs – Terry added simple snowflakes in key areas. This is an option - you don’t have to do this.
5. Let the fabric speak to you – it will tell you how it would like to be quilted! In the Skate border, Terry decided to give it a bead board finish. At home, you can use your walking foot to quilt straight line alternating between 1″ apart and then 1/4″ apart. You can see the Snow Shoe border that she followed along the plaid. The sled border fabric had a small diagonal print – do a 45 degree cross hatch, spaced 1 – 1 1/2″ apart. In all 3 borders, Terry incorporated a technique that you can do yourself!
What? You say you’d rather have a long arm quilter finish up for you? Communicate with her as much as you can; bring sketches or ask her what she thinks will work. You can also get familiar with quilting styles by looking at your local shops, to see what you like. The more information you can give to her, the better your results will be.
Thanks so much, Terry, for making our banners shine!
Happy quilting! -Kris
Are you ready for Spring sewing? I hope you are!
This is a preview of our new Spring Door Banner. We know you’ll like using the Creative Grids 45º/90º Triangle Ruler CGRMS4590…we used it to piece the baskets here. This is a versatile ruler that we explore in this pattern.
It’s raining here today, but if I look at this banner, I know that Spring is here!
Have a great day! Keep stitchin’,
We have just introduced PQD-187, Fab Photo Frames, a pattern that uses 2 fat quarters and 1/2 package of Heat Moldable Stiffener to create a lovely keepsake! This pattern can be made in prints, batiks, novelties and then embellished with decorative stitching, buttons and trims. Our testers were amazed with the professional results they achieved with their first project. The Heat Moldable Stiffener adds stability to the project, as well as the ability to mail the frame flat to your gift recipient; when the “giftee” receives the frame, they can reshape the frame with an iron to add the bend needed. We hope you’ll give this project a try!
It’s almost spring; before you know it, we’ll be planning barbecues, graduations, showers, all sorts of outdoor events! Now is a great time to try Paverpol! Paverpol is a fabric stiffener with a consistency much like craft glue. It can be applied to fabric, paper, clay, dried flowers, most anything you can think of except plastic. Paverpol makes your creation weather resistant, so it can be used indoors or out.
I wanted to try Paverpol to coat a leaf bowl to make it water resistant. Because our bowl is already stiff, the Paverpol is not being used to stiffen it any more; however the bowl is even more stable with the addition of the Paverpol.
How did I do it? First I completed the leaf bowl per the PQD-176 Natural Inspirations Leaf Bowl pattern; including the molding. (Once you have applied the Paverpol, you can’t re-mold your project, so make sure that you will be happy with the shape that you have achieved). I then the bowl on a sheet of plastic wrap and applied a thin coat of Paverpol to one side using a new sponge brush. (I like to use a new brush to avoid those pesky little foam “crumbs” from adhering to the project). Its that easy! I let the project dry about 2 hours, and then applied another coat. The nice thing about Paverpol is that it dries really fast! I applied 2 more coats on the back.
I found that I could sand my leaf with a 220 grit very fine sandpaper (don’t use a coarser sandpaper or you will remove the coating and some fabric with it!!) – the sanding gave me a smoother finish that I could then apply a 3rd coat of Paverpol to.
I hope you can see a little bit of the shine on the photo! I would not put anything greasy in the bowl without putting in a paper towel for absorption, but at least you will be able to wipe the bowl after using it!
If you like the fabric in this bowl, check out Newcastle Fabric’s Style Mod line – they are also introducing Style Mod 2 – can’t wait to see that!
So, if you need a pretty little bowl for your next picnic, try Paverpol! Ask for Paverpol at your local quilt shop, or get it on line at http://www.keepsakequilting.com/productdetail/8121.htm. If you’d like to get more ideas on using Paverpol, check out www.paverpol.com.