A quick post today to show that I have not been lazing around, but am truly working on finishing up my next quilt. I always procrastinate when it’s time to baste because I really just do not enjoy it. With small items like pillows, I spray baste. But when it comes to quilts, I just don’t get the same finish quality as when I pin baste. But I do know others that have great success with spray basting, so I always say you should do what works best for you.
I had always planned on doing straight line quilting on this one. When I received the Bernina 750, I knew it didn’t come with a walking foot. I asked during my training if I could use the walking foot from my 440 with it and found out yes, I could. But I might not want to because the 750 has a dual feed system that can be used for straight line quilting.
I will go ahead and tell you that in my head I thought “SURE. Right. There is NO.WAY. the dual feed can compare to the walking foot when it comes to quilting.” You see, I love the walking foot on my 440. The first time I used it after buying that machine, it was like the clouds parted and the sun shined directly on me.
Then, at quilt guild last week, my friend Catherine assured me that the dual feed on the 750 works great for quilting. Yep, I was still skeptical because I am really stubborn like that.
So I thought I would do a little test. I set up my machine with the dual feed. I followed the recommended pressure foot settings for quilting from my manual. You can see on the screen above, I changed the pressure from 50 (the default) to -10, as recommended. I switched my needle to a 90/14 Machine Quilting needle and got to work. I stitched a line with the dual feed setup. Then I switched to my walking foot. Below, the dual feed line is on the left and the walking foot line is on the right.
Ok, here it goes. I.Was.Wrong. Yep, the dual feed did an amazing job! And not so much the walking foot. I will say once I saw how good the dual feed was doing, I didn’t spend a ton of time tweaking my settings to try to make the walking foot look as good (messing with pressure foot settings and such).
*** Update *** This morning I spent some time testing settings again with the walking foot. With the right settings, the walking foot worked great, just as nicely as the dual feed. Below is a photo and the settings I used.
Fabric and batting: Art Gallery Pure Elements Solid / Quilter’s Dream Cotton Request Loft
Dual Feed: Stitch Length 3.0 / Foot 1D / Foot Pressure -10
Walking Foot: Stitch Length 3.0 / Bernina Walking Foot / Foot Pressure 55
You can see the main difference is the pressure foot settings. I decreased it significantly from the default setting of 50 for quilting with the dual feed. I increased it just slightly for the walking foot. (This will depend on your type of fabric and batting. I use a very low loft batting.)
So there you go! Now I have the option of using both the walking foot AND the dual feed – I just need to check and double check my settings before getting started.
So I’m going to spend much of today continuing with my straight lines. Over and over again. It always takes longer than I remembered, but it’s turning out great!
April 29, 2014 40 Comments
Between snowball fights, taking the kids ice skating, preschool holiday programs and baking cookies, I managed to finish something this week! (I know, pretty amazing). A couple of weeks ago I shared this photo…
I decided to make four blocks from a pattern in Elizabeth Dackson’s Becoming a Confident Quilter book and turn them into a mini quilt. Not too mini, as the blocks are 17″ squares. I paired the Oakshott Cottons with some linen. Because I wanted to keep things interesting, I made one block with the Essex Linen black background.
I really love these colors. They remind me of the Amish community. For the backing I used strips of additional Oakshotts and Essex linen. I quilted this with straight lines, that radiate in a “V” shape on each side. It was my first time quilting this pattern, so I am trying not to be overly critical of myself. I did get better as I went.
I also wanted the binding to blend with the front, so I matched the binding color to the background color in each block.
It was great working with Oakshotts again. I know they are a bit pricey but they are definitely something special. Elizabeth’s pattern was also wonderful. Perfect for beginners on up and I love the modern-traditional look of the design.
Update! You can find Oakshott cottons in the US at Contemporary Cloth.
December 18, 2013 25 Comments
Happy Monday! I hope everyone had a relaxing weekend. I spent both days traveling to the city for various birthday and Mother’s Day parties – May is a very, very busy month in our family. I did manage to get a photo of me and my kiddos yesterday. Usually I’m at the other end of the camera so it’s always a special treat.
I wasn’t able to spend any time at my sewing machine, but I did finish up my newest mini quilt last Friday. This quilt was so fun to make. Mostly because of the great fabrics from Laura Gunn. The colors are really amazing!
When making this quilt, I first cut my neutral squares at 2-1/2″ x 2-1/2″. Initially I thought this was going to be a pillow, so I set it up to finish at 18″ x 18″. This means there are 9 squares across and 9 squares down (for a total of 81). I pieced those together first, and then created my quilt sandwich for quilting. The neutral fabrics I used are all Free Spirit Designer Solids – Pearl, Sand Dune and Dogwood.
After that was all set up, I started placing out my circles until I came up with a layout that I liked. I used Heat n Bond Lite to fuse the circles to the squares.
After I was done ironing everything into place, I did the quilting. I’m not sure if this is a weird order to go about the process, but I thought it would be fun/smart to combine the applique and quilting steps. (As opposed to appliqueing the circles onto the squares, and then sewing them together, creating the quilt sandwich, and quilting).
At first I started just going around the edge of each circle, but after one row I changed my mind and decided on something a little different. So I ripped out those stitches and started quilting 4 straight lines through the middle of each row and column. Just something a bit unexpected.
From the beginning, when I was thinking about this project, I envisioned raw edges fraying in the finished quilt. I’ve washed it a couple times now and it’s only now starting to fray a little. I think I need to throw it back in a couple more times. I’m really enjoying the texture it’s creating.
This week I’m hoping to sit down and do some design work, and also get back to work on my Simply Style work in progress. Finger’s crossed!
May 13, 2013 31 Comments
Don’t worry, I didn’t just whip this quilt up in the last few days. (You probably figured that out based on the weather in the photo here.) Last December, I had the great opportunity to make a new, larger version and pattern of my baby Starfall quilt for Modern Quilts Unlimited, Spring 2013 issue. (See the bottom of my Publications page for pattern errata.)
I originally made this quilt for the class I co-taught at the Sewing Summit – Shapes and Angles. This quilt was an example of what you can make using the Partial Seams technique. (Speaking of…I do plan on *finally* putting up a tutorial for partial seams very soon.)
I fell in love, hard, with Denyse Schmidt’s Chicopee collection last year. So much so, that I made this second quilt out of the same fabrics. I mixed in a few fabrics from her DS Quilts Collections from JoAnns and one perfect green print from Anna Maria Horner’s Good Folks collection.
The finished quilt measure 60″ x 72″ and I quilted it with straight lines, 1/2″ apart. As usual, that took awhile but was more than worth it in the end.
I definitely recommend picking up the magazine – not just for my quilt but for all the others inside. It’s full of beautiful patterns by all sorts of names you will probably recognize (Rossie Hutchinson, Patty Sloniger, Patty Young, Elizabeth Dackson, Victoria Findlay Wolfe and many others) and a great article about Negative Space by Jacquie Gehring.
I believe subscribers already should have their copies, and you will be able to find it at shops soon (if not already).
May 2, 2013 38 Comments