Posts Tagged ‘embellishment’

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31.8 I come back to this quilt periodically

August 1, 2013

After a year of off and on only stitching the border around my Periodic Spiral quilt, I finally joined the ends the other day.

A couple of years ago, I started off on a journey of tiny hexagons, sewn around batik scraps collected by some of my guild members.

I was inspired by an online “maybe it’s abandoned program” which no one from the program contacted me weather it was okay or not okay to talk about their website in a blog/podcast.

I mean the Periodic Sprial quilt from the diagram on the “Periodic Spiral website“.

I have podcasted about it, blogged about it when deciding my trims, and then mentioned it again when showing some of the embroidery I did for it.

I printed out the PDF from the website onto some Printed Treasures paper.

periodic spiral website on fabric

And then I cut out the group names that I had previously embroidered.

rough layout of periodic quilt trim start

The previous photo was taken about a year ago.

Last weekend, I arranged the periodic table group name labels close to the groups in question.

trim complete periodic spiral embroidery layout

I am planning to outline each of these with trim of some sort (hasn’t been decided yet which trim). And then I am going to embroider a line from the name to the group area.

I remember making one mistake design element two years ago when setting up these hexies into blocks. I never separated non metals & metalloids, the traditional ‘staircase line’ that follows most versions of the periodic table.

So I will have to embroider it in place.

And have I shown you about the shiny fabric???

I had really prepared for this quilt last year, as the letters I made were cut out with fusible on black batik already.  And then the shiny fabric was cut to make a perfect ‘border’ around the black fabric letters.

periodic spiral with letters layout

So this year, I decided to transfer the previously cut and made letters onto the previously cut shiny fabric, after adding fusible webbing to the back of the shiny fabric strip for stability.

I referenced the Tip Sheet for Metallic & Sheer fabrics for a rough idea on how to handle this. Although I currently don’t have it sewn down yet, I think this will be a nice idea.

Really there so far, doesn’t seem to be much to it. A fusible webbing heat set onto the back of the fabric, one of those two sided ones that you have to peel off later.  And then I have my applique pressing sheet to make sure it happens okay. I don’t use the pressing sheet often, but good for me for having it & using it.

Now it is going on my wall, or rather on the front door to my sewing room, and I know I’ve been tempted by the lure of shiny fabrics in my past, but I’m not making the same mistake with this one. I made a pillow out of similar fabrics while in high school, yes it was shiny and cool feeling, but you woke up with face sparklies and for a few days didn’t know why.

The shiny fabric above leers on the edge of “gaudy” or “tacky” but as a silver background, it pops out nice with the forground colors AND evokes all the METALS that can be found as natural elements.

And so what’s probably next for this quilt is to get back out my box of trims (there are more than this) and decide what’s going around all the group names.

box of trims

I still like the black braid outlined in white that I thought about using for the whole center outline, but I have to figure out where to use it that it will go, but not attract too much attention away from the hexagon ‘star’ middle of the quilt.

For now I am contemplating that braid around the key, and maybe a black with silver beads around the group names, and maybe the same black around the words “Periodic Spiral”

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31.7 Little Star – from UFO to FO to Applique to Beaded

July 29, 2013

I can’t believe all the blog posts that have been coming out from me lately and none of them have really had to do much with what I’ve been sewing.

Which yes, I have been doing actually. A good thing for a break, and a good thing to be back in the middle of these UFO unfinished object things.

Of course, I haven’t really touched my machine in a few weeks, so I’m trying to be creative, think outside of the ‘using a machine’ for quilting steps.

This post, I will discuss my ‘fun’ in finding out that a finished object wasn’t exactly finished.

Some of you may have seen the pictures on twitter or something already.

Little Star went through some ‘stellar evolution’ over the course of the last month.

My little star was a bonus quilt, an orphaned block I purchased.  I bordered, quilted, and then created a single applique star in the middle.

It sat this way as a finished object (FO) for 6 months or so, and I kept looking at the quilt, thinking, huh, I don’t like the center quilting (heading toward the center star) very much, although very happy with the rest of the quilting.

I asked myself if I wanted to put it in the show, and I wasn’t sure.

Until about 3 days before the quilt show.

mini star quilt

Then I had an idea of “a fast fix” since I really didn’t feel like spending time gluing down applique pieces and then hand appliqueing them. I decided to “go look for heat-set / iron-on stars”.

So I drove to town, listened to a few quilting podcasts (starting to catch up much closer to on time now, helps that it’s summer and episodes are a little sparse with peeps), and located all the stars that I could at Hancock fabrics. I looked all through the jewelery section, and all through the buttons, and the iron on stars, and I purchased several types of things to try.

And then went to Michael s, and they had some silver sequins, in addition some iron-on metal-type stars.  And then I was in the bead section, and found some fantastic looking yellow stripey beads.  This got my brain thinking beads, to know to check my bead box when I got home, as I purchased a TON of types of beads and trims for the Periodic Sprial quilt (linked post only shows about 1/10th of my choices).

Coming home a few days (a day?) before the quilt show, I started arranging and making choices about the gold iron-ons, blue iron-ons and the silver tiny iron-ons. And set to work with the iron, a pressing fabric.

The yellow iron on stars stayed very well. The blue ones kept falling off no matter how heavily I pressed and pressed.

I was confused because the blue and yellow pieces were essentially the same brand, but apparently, the gold stars had a better glue than the blue stars.

But for that night they stayed on the quilt.

And these little metal iron-on stars had a few things that made them different (notable).

I was in such a hurry I didn’t get any progress pictures at all, but here’s how they worked.

The entire sheet of stars had a fusible webbing type backing on the bottom of the star, and the whole thing had a clear plastic sheet on the top of the star.

The idea was to cut out the star from the entire sheet of stars, and then peel off the webbing from the back, leaving the clear plastic top.  Which seemed odd. And then you had a scrap fabric covering over the clear plastic sheet, on top of the little metal star, on top of a webbing which now only appeared directly below the star and star alone.

Press down on the scrap fabric, hold for X amount of seconds, then remove the plastic from the top (when cool).

And by golly, these things worked. Worked well. I did lose one in a ‘folding accident’, but one only.

So I had all these stars ready to go. Day of the show I had a label I was pinning down to the back (no time to hand sew it in) and the blue stars kept falling off.

And I was going to try to get to the set up for the show, I knew I would be needed. But, I had like 45 minutes before I wanted to be there, and so I ’emergency appliqued’ my blue stars down.  I went for all the inside points of the star. Not easy to poke through. Not my best applique effort, but enough to keep any falling off.

You know how hard it is to applique thick pieces of fabric not meant to be sewn through, while they are not staying on the quilt, while you’re on a strict deadline? Not easy at all!

But it all got done. In time for the show. I was only a “little late” for setup.

DSC03900

So the quilt is NOW finished???

Umm….

No…. Not exactly ….

Saturday after the show (1 week later), I kept coming back to the yellow beads and some grey/blue disc beads I had bought before, and several strings of some irregular grey/blue smaller beads.

So I decided, post-quilt-show, to bling up the little star quilt again. More.

The very corners of my quilting have circles, so naturally the flat yellow beads fit directly into those prequilted circles.

And the half circles of the blocks lent themselves to the blue/grey disks.

And then I lined the very outer ring of the half circles with the small irregular beads, and couched them down.

little star with beads

Here is a closeup of it with the embellishments.

closeup of little star applique and beads

I kind of like that I didn’t stop when I thought I would.

Someone called this a ‘flag’ due to the symmetry and the colors and such. so now I think of it as the Little Star Scientific Quilter flag quilt.

I did do more quilting and gluing and stuff, but since I have been so good at posting lots of ‘smaller’ posts lately, I will wrap this up and show you my other progress in future posts.