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Lupines: the quilting begins!

Ever so slightly ahead of schedule, I have begun quilting on the Lupines. Luckily (and one reason I chose this imagery) this will be easy quilting.  And yes, once again, I LOVE MY BERNINA Q20.  Crazy expensive and worth Every. Single. Penny.   Lots and LOTS of pennies.

This morning I finished basting the Lupines quilt.  I decided to try something I haven’t done before:  a double batt.   I definitely wanted to use wool, but I haven’t been able to find a source for my favorite Matilda’s Own Wool-poly blend batt in the US recently, and I’m hoarding my last batt.   So I used  Quilters’ Dream Wool which is much fluffier; I fused my top to that.

BUT I was concerned about distortion because of the fluffiness–it just didn’t feel like it would hang well and be stable.  Dreamy (pun intended) in a bed, lap or snuggle quilt, but by itself on a densely quilted wall quilt?  Not so much.  So I took the only cotton batting I had, Quilters Dream Select, and layered that underneath the wool.  If I had had Request, the thinnest, I would have used that instead.  Finally, spray basted the backing and safety pinned intermittently.  I am using up long lengths of print fabric in my stash when they suit the quilt–time to move them along.  Will have to dye something to match for facings and hanging sleeve.

I also selected thread yesterday afternoon and this morning.

When I choose thread for a quilt, I “test drive” it by drizzling on the surface. If it works, it goes in the shallow box. I probably won’t use all of these, but will use most of them–about half the solid greens and almost all of the rest. And I added a medium purple this morning and will likely not use the dark purple in the box at all.

Things I have learned so far:

  • Painting a nonwoven is a good thing.  But if that nonwoven is Pellon 65 heavyweight interfacing, it is somewhat like using construction paper.  Will do the non woven thing again, but will look for something softer yet still dense (so no shadow through).
  • Mistyfuse is by far my fusible of choice.  But it behaves differently on the interfacing than it does on cloth.  If I fuse this particular interfacing again, I will use TWO layers of Mistyfuse–it is plenty fine and easy to stitch, and it will help this painted interfacing stick better–see photo.

Because of the difference (in porosity maybe?) between fabric and interfacing, my fusible isn’t sticking quite as well as usual. So I have re-fused various spots, and in a couple of cases tucked snippets of Mistyfuse under the stubborn lifting petals. I found, luckily, that if I am careful I can still quilt those lifting petals because the interfacing doesn’t wobble around like fabric.

And to my astonishment, I quilted almost five of the six purple lupines today.  I have a couple of the tops where I will use pale lilac or cream unstitched as of this evening, but I am definitely farther along than I thought I would be.

Quilting in progress…done on the right, not done on the left. Using just one purple thread to stitch down the petals/quilt down the petals is working out OK despite the value changes from petal to petal.

That means the “after Eli goes back to college” period may be less frantic than I had feared. YIPPEE!  Barring catastrophe, I will be one and able to take photos and submit then ON TIME.  Stay tuned!




6 Responses to “Lupines: the quilting begins!”

  1. Sue Siefkin Says:

    Looking great! Try Pellon 830 instead of 65 next time. I think you will like the results.

  2. Heather Pregger Says:

    I’ve enjoyed watching this piece progress. It is beautiful, Sarah!

  3. Sarah Ann Smith Says:

    Thanks so much, Heather! I’m pleased so far…but now I’m at the usual “oh dear I’m ruining it phase” so hope that I’m really not!

  4. Mary Lou Taylor Says:

    I would love to learn from you!

  5. Sarah Ann Smith Says:

    <<>> and thank you! I’ll be teaching my collage techniques at International Quilt Festival Houston (Tues and Weds) if you are planning on going! If you are, let me know and I’ll tell you the class numbers–it’s Birch Pond Seasons on Tuesday and Quilting the Garden on Wednesday. Hope some day to cross paths with you, and thanks again.

  6. Patricia L Walters Says:

    I cant seem to find your email address and the last post have a NON reply so I cannot reply to you that way. I read all your posts!
    My brother was here for 2 months and kept me busy playing Super Big Boggle with him and my hubby, Dan.
    With all the activity I was late getting any email read or created. Somehow I have misplaced yours. Please help. I was watching you on Quilting Arts CD 2000 yesterday. Are you thinking of creating a class on-line? I think I asked you before or you mentioned would I like it – Yes! I love your Art quilts and quilting!