Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Trip to Des Moines

Back from a great road trip to Des Moines to the American Quilter’s Society quilt show. I love road trips, especially when they involve quilts and fabric. I took two classes in Des Moines—one on “Quilting Outside the Box” with Diane Gloystein, who works for the Sulky thread company, and one called “Love That Lone Star” with Jan Krentz.

In “Quilting Outside the Box,” we played with decorative machine stitches on fancy fabrics to make the two small panels on the right. Diane showed us how to edge the project with silk cord (attach it with a zigzag stitch) for a small wall hanging. It was fun to play around with machine and thread without a big commitment of time and materials. The lone star class lasted all day, but I only finished ONE of the eight diamond points of my star, on the left.

I learned a lot, however, about precision piecing, and this is No. 1: Make SURE you are sewing a SCANT quarter-inch seam! I had a lot of trouble piecing on the machines provided in the class—very nice machines, but not my trusty old Bernina. Jan Krentz was a great teacher, and although I read her book Lone Star Quilts and Beyond before the class, she had extra tips to give us that were not in the book. And since the lone star is not an easy pattern, I think taking the class gave me enough courage to tackle it. I spent two full days in my sewing studio when I got home and finished my star and the setting blocks, below.

Originally I planned to feature blue flowers centered in 4 setting squares, and red flowers centered in the other 4. But the flowers are not quite large enough to do that—I got red and blue in every square. So I fussy-cut all the squares exactly alike to maximize the use of blue and yellow—and pretty much destroyed 3 yards of fabric in the process. (Oh well—that’s what it’s for.) I like the way it turned out. I think the setting squares kind of create a wreath of flowers around the star.

The next step is to make the trapezoid border pieces, but I want to add a narrow blue band of color all around the setting squares. This is going to be a bit complicated!

AND--Quilt Stories was named  "Blog of the Week" last Friday on the AQS Facebook page. Hurray! Thanks for reading.

No comments:

Post a Comment