Saturday, January 16, 2016

Short Weekend Diversion

I have a client's very monstrous Neimeyer Mariner's Star quilt on my frame on it's way to being finished.  Maybe by mid-week, that is...sigh!  It is 108" of enormous, and it does not lack from a gross amount of ruler work.  "Good things come to those that are patient", I keep telling myself, as I quilt on.  This is the last quilt before I will put my Swamp Carpenter's star back on for it's final finishes.  There's not much time to spare, as the photos and entry are due in 15 days for MQX.  I want to be able to get it blocked first so I know if it bleeds to heck and back.  This quilt was made back in my carefree piecing days, when I rarely prewashed.  One of it's predecessors bled horribly.

It is a snowy day here in Maine today, perfect for quilting.  My order of thread from Superior Threads arrived in record time.  It has several I hope to use on this quilt, including one I am using for a little detail work.  

Normally I quilt the backgrounds with Kimono silk, which is a 100 weight - that's super fine.  But on a couple of quilts last year I tried out their Tire silk - it is a 30 weight.  It shows great as a trimming-out/detailing thread.  For kicks, I got a couple spools of the black to outline these.  Though it could be stitched on the longarm, I figured I'd do it on the DSM.  Adding this thread in the past has been to cover-up when a stitched line was not quilt as I liked, or to enhance a part of the quilting.  Here it is just for finishing.
 There's one of the hexie plates...
 ...and here is a detail.  Yup...I have machine appliqued these.  This is a total first for me, despite taking classes on machine applique from Sue Nickel and Harriet Hargrave.  I have just never liked the end result as much as hand applique.  BUT...I wanted to finish this quilt in this decade, so I ventured out.  It has a YLI nylon on the top and silk bobbin.  It really is mostly invisible, and I am pretty sure once it is quilted it will be very much invisible.  I also tried out the water soluble stabilizer that Sharon Shamber sells.  It came really well recommended by fellow applique quilters.  I hope it does truly soften.  My sample isn't too bad, but one of the beauties of Radiance is that the quilts are supple, and soft.
 Above is the same plate with a single line of detail stitching with the 30wt silk.  It gives it just the amount of finishing it needs.
And I think it might mask the nylon thread just a little bit.  This is no fast task -- I probably have another 4 hours of this left!

Here's a peek at a few more of these crazy-bold hexagon blocks...

It's time to get my teaching stuff in gear, as I have 2 new classes debuting in under 3 months!


Tomomi McElwee said...

That applique is brilliant! You are genius!!

DeborahB said...

The green is machine appliqued?! That's extraordinary. What stitch (and what machine) did you use?