Saturday, January 26, 2008

Crazy Quilting Part One

While Andrea and I where staying with my Grandfather out in Washington early last year, we were invited to "quilt for a day" with our Aunt Alicia. It was a delightful treat and we were very thankful for her hospitality. When we arrived she had everything prepared for us; tools laid out, strips pre-cut, and sewing machines at the ready.

What impressed me the most was her plethora of short cuts...I had started quilts and found myself overwhelmed by the tediousness of it and that quilting seemed to be a never ending project...

Aunt Alicia taught us that there is no need to be overwhelmed and that shortcuts abound. I had never occurred to me to seek out shortcuts. (That sounds too much like cheating...but then again I did go to public school.) She taught us that there are many creative ways to accomplish the same tasks in a fraction of the time without compromising quality.

Aunt Alicia sent us home with instructions and we couldn't wait to pass on what we had learned. The crazy quilt block is very simple and there really isn't much planning involved. (The part of quilt making I find tedious)

The girls pick out the fabric they would like to use as their centerpieces.

Since we're all girls here, we are using heart templates to create our centerpiece motif. Templates are used and these are handmade from flexible vinyl plastic. These hearts can also be used as butterfly wings.

Tracing around the templates on Heat and Bond paper. We'll use this to make our centerpieces fusible to the center blocks.

Next the girls trim around their hearts leaving a 1/4" outside the lines.

The center blocks are ready. These measure 5 1/4" x 6 1/4". I am sure that any size would do. This is the only piece in the quilt that is a uniform size.

Preparing the center piece fabric. If your fabric is like mine is gets a little wrinkly in storage. Pressing it before you apply the heat and bond will create nice and neat results.

At this point you will notice the Renae is ironing the heat and bond shape that she created to the back of the fabric. That's important. Too much heat will set the heat and bond permanently. Run the iron over your paper a couple times and that should do it.

Now cut out your centerpiece shape on the line that your drew originally.

Aren't they pretty?

Peel the paper off the back of your centerpiece and you will see that you have applied a bonding material enabling you to iron your centerpiece to your center block.

Align your centerpiece on your center block how you prefer.

Here is an example of how to lay out two small hearts.

Pressto! Iron them to your center block. This is the cheater way of appliqueing. You'll notice in the first picture of this post that I did some embroidery work around my centerpiece. It's a pretty addition and it make me feel better about securing the motifs.

Renae with her finished centerpiece.


Dutchess said...

I love love love LOVE funky unplanned quilts!! They are so much more original. My sister Valerie makes beautiful quilts from beautiful patterns....but I don't have the patience either! And I like the craziness of mine...

The Serven Clan said...

Hello girls,

What fun! What was the name of the book that you used for the instructions? I've many fabric scraps that someday need to find a new home nestled in a quilt. : )

See you soon,

Miss Kelly & Miss Andrea said...

The book that we are working from is called "Folk Art Quilts ~ A fresh look ~ 18 quilts for hearth and home" by Sandy Bonsib. The ISBN is 1-56477-218-7 There are some other great quilts in there that I plan on doing later. Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

Wow. Quilts *are* art! Wish I could sew like that. I think I could learn...if I could tear myself away from the computer. :)

-Christine from Arizona