Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Chicken Wallhanging - WOW!

I'm so excited about this post.  Keep in mind when you read this blog I'm not taking credit for making this  wall hanging that I’m going to talk to you about today. 
This wall hanging is made by my cousin, Carolea.  She purchased this wall hanging by joining a Block of the Month Club through Keepsake Quilting which provided the material and pattern each month in 2000.  She finished the blocks in 2001.  Now I have to tell you that this whole wall hanging is done by hand.  She needle turned all of it.  Each feather, each raspberry and grape clusters, all the branches, flowers, leaves, eggs all of it.  Layers upon layers were added by appliqueing on each chicken feather.  Last July she took it out of the closet and decided that she only wanted to finish the wall hanging by hand quilting it.  She started hand quilting it the first night of the Olympics and finished it a week ago.  Hand quilting was challenging because of the thickness of all the materials.  She said she’d probably never do another raspberry or grape cluster again! Appliqueing  and/or hand quilting.   Can u blame her!  She’s happy with it and I would to be if it was mine.  Another point this was her first project or attempt at needle turning.  Looks awesome cousin!

Carolea will welcome any comments!  She’ll be watching my blog to see what you say.  Hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed posting it.

Off to the sewing room…….


Sunday, September 9, 2012

Disappearing 9 Patch Quilt

Have you ever gone into a quilt shop or on line and see these little 5” square packs of material and don’t know what or how to use them?  These are called “Charm Packs.”
I am really starting to like using 5” charms.   Charm-square packages are produced by the manufacturers using there fabric line and colors that blend together.  It’s quick and easy!  They come in a variety of different colors or values.  The theory is “use what you have” just like quilters have done for so many years. These charm packs come in a variety of quantities within a pack.  Just depends on who your manufacturer is.

TIP: A note on charm packs, they usually don’t stick around very long so if you see one that you like you might want to purchase one or two right away.

Cutting a charm square is very important to make sure you don’t miscut.  Don’t let this scare you because if you do miscut there’s a good chance you might have a piece of stash that you could cut a 5” square out of and use it for a substitute.  It doesn’t have to match perfectly and remember you’ll be the only one that knows you substituted.  Some charms have pinked edges and these are usually measured from the outside edge of the pinking.  So be sure to measure your square before you cut.

I’m going to tell you how to make a “Disappearing 9 Patch!” If you don’t have any charm packs and you’d like to try it you can cut 5” squares from any of your stash and do the same thing.  That’s why charms are so much fun because they are already cut for you and not that expensive and you can go right to sewing them.

Now how does a “Disappearing 9 patch” work?   Using 5” Charms, sew together 3 charms x 3 charms, which makes a 9 patch.  When figuring out which charms you want on each row remember that the 4 corner blocks will not be cut.  So within the pack you find a few squares you don’t really care for then put them in the centers of each row.  You are now ready to cut.  Cut down the middle of the 9 patch, turn and cut down middle again.  Once cut then mix and match the blocks, the way you like them.  Don’t forget to take the time to square your blocks up when completed. There is no right or wrong way to set your blocks.  It's your quilt!

Now doesn't that sound very quick and easy?  Try it and let me know if you like this technique. 

Keep that sewing machine humming,