I’ve been spending most of my time quilting the secret project and a bit of hand work. I do not like switching from quilting to regular piecing because I’d have to switch out the feet and I’d rather just finish the quilting than going back and forth between quilting and piecing. But the quilting is done now. I’ll finish hand binding tomorrow and will get the label on it at some point. I’m sorry I can’t post pictures yet.
1. Raining Cats and Dogs – Block 6 – The house is done. I’ve got the dog and the lamp left to do. At the rate I’m going, this should be done in the next week or two and I’ll be able to start on the next block next month. This is definitely going much faster than I thought since Block 6 wasn’t even on my list of things to get done this month. When I started this BOM it took me 3 months to complete the first block. So I’m happy to see how much I’ve improved over the last two years. When I put all the blocks together it will be interesting to compare the first blocks I did with these last few and see visually my improvement.
2. my hand quilt – Working on quilting Border #3 – I finished quilting the first ring of the last border last night. I think I’ll be doing at least 2 more rings but I may turn that into 3. We’ll see how it looks as I get further along.
3. Rainbow Garden – I’ve slowly been working on this BOM. It was a really slow start. I got my first block in September only to discover that I didn’t have the right thread. I’d never worked with wool before so I had no idea what I was doing. I didn’t even know what kind of thread I needed. So I asked the shop doing the BOM to send me my thread and they sent it to me with my October block. So right off the bat I was a month behind. When I received the thread I enjoyed looking at it and the pieces of wool but I was afraid to cut into it. Again, I had no idea what I was doing. I went online and googled how to applique wool. The method I found and I tried was the following:
- Trace patterns (without a 1/4 inch seam allowance) onto freezer paper – I used a lightbox
- cut around the patterns – not on the line but just to separate them from each other
- Iron them onto the correct color of wool – I had to look at the picture and figure out which piece matched which fabric
- cut the pattern and wool on the line to get the exact wool piece
- place the pieces onto the background material – I matched the picture to figure out where things go where
- use a lot of needles to pin it down
This BOM listed the order of the tread in the instructions they sent for the September packet. I haven’t looked at the October packet so I do not know if this was just done for the first one or will be the case each time. It helps that they list it in order. At first I wasn’t sure what kind of stitch to use. When I applique normally, I’m needle-turning for an invisible stitch. That isn’t something I can do with wool. One, because it’s to thick. Second, because I didn’t cut a seam allowance. Well – even if I did – it would still be too thick to needle-turn wool. 🙂 The instructions said to whipstitch. I’ve always understood whipstitch to be the simplest stitch in stitching two fabrics together but I still thought that the stitch was practically invisible – at least I tried to make it so. I whipstitch when I do my hexies. But nobody taught me this and all my research has been online so it may not necessarily be correct. I tried to applique the wool with the whipstitch being “invisible” but it didn’t come out so well so I made the stitch visible and I think it looks better.
This process has been a real enlightenment for me working with something new. I’m almost done stitching it. I’ve got the large leaves and the stem left to do and the last step is to embroider. I’m not sure yet what that entails as the only embroidery I’ve done is the bit I have to do with Raining Cats and Dogs. But while I’m stitching I realize that this is an art that doesn’t need to be precise and maybe that’s why there isn’t specific instructions on how to do it. You pretty much have to look at it and do whatever looks right to you. This is so different than appliqueing with cotton fabric which has to be very precise. I have to consciously let go of wanting to be precise and just do what I think looks right.
What is on your WIP Wednesday?
~Wish I was quilting…