Thread Journey: Quilt Construction, Part 1

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 1

Welcome to first part of Quilt Construction for Wendy Sheppard’s Thread Journey Quilt Along! We are so thrilled to be embarking on this journey with all of you and are looking forward to seeing your progress and eventually, your finished quilts. If you’re sewing along and want to share your images on Instagram, please consider tagging Wendy (@ivory_spring), Aurifil (@aurifilthread)and #threadjourneyquiltalong so that we might share in your process!

With that said… here’s Wendy!

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Hello Friends, here it is! Today is the day we start our Thread Journey quilt. I sincerely hope that making this quilt will mark a fun episode in your own thread journey!

DISCLAIMER:

#1. I intend for YOU to have fun making this quilt. Therefore, you are free to change things around anytime, anyway, or anyhow! It is YOUR quilt.

Elizabeth Bennet in BBC’s Pride & Prejudice said it best, and I quote, “Maria, this is your trunk; these are your gowns. You may arrange them in any way you wish. (whisper) Lady Catherine will never know.”

#2. I understand that this sew-along will reach quilters of various skill levels. Considerable effort is made to present clearly the steps to make this quilt. Basic and common techniques are not presented in detailed, assuming quilters can look up information on the techniques for themselves to prevent this post from being too lengthy. However, if certain hurdles persist in attempting this project, I will do my best to assist you.

#3. Should you have additional questions or need assistance, I will be checking in on this post as often as I can. Please leave your questions in the comments and I will do my best to help you out! 

PART 1: FABRIC SELECTION
I thought I would briefly address the issue of fabric selection since a few have asked how I select my fabrics. Honestly, my rules of thumb are “pot-luck” and “the more the merrier” with triple dosages of both when it comes to a scrap quilt (like Thread Journey). I am always surprised at the visual effect when I throw in hot pink and turquoise blue and use them together with bright orange! For this project, I am using the fabrics from Wyndham’s Basic Lines (Palette, Mary’s Blenders).

***

For my quilt center background, I have selected a muted palette that covers a wide range of colors. Muted because it is for the background so that the added applique will pop against the muted background.

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 2

I auditioned fabrics of rich and bold hues for the applique pieces.

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 3

PART 2: Quilt Center

1. The quilt center finishes at 20″ x 20″. Therefore, it should measure 20 1/2″ x 20 1/2″ raw edge to raw edge.

2. Options (measurements given are unfinished measurements):

  • Piece together 10 (2 1/2″ x 20 1/2″) strips
  • Piece together 4 rows of 4 (5 1/2″ x 5 1/2″) squares
  • Piece together 5 rows of 5 (4 1/2″ x 4 1/2″) squares
  • Piece together 10 rows of 10 (2 1/2″ x 2 1/2″) squares
  • 1 (20 1/2″ x 20 1/2″) square — no piecing for this one!

3.  My version is made with 10 (2 1/2″ x 20 1/2″) strips that are pieced with shorter pieces joined together by diagonal seams.

  • A simple way to figure out the Math is to find the combination of numbers that add up to 20 (finished). For example, 6 and 14. So, I would add 1/2″ to one of the numbers, and add 2 1/2″ to the other number in my cutting. In this case, I can cut (a) 2 1/2″ x 6 1/2″ and 2 1/2″ x 14 1/2″ pieces, or (b) 2 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ and 2 1/2″ x 14 1/2″ pieces. This Math works for other combinations of (2 1/2″)-wide strips as well.
  • If you don’t want to be bothered with the Math, and still want to use strips pieced diagonally, you can always just piece the strips, and trim the pieces to measure (2 1/2″ x 20 1/2″).
  • The steps and diagrams for diagonal piecing:
    • Place 2 fabric strips perpendicular to each other
    • Draw a diagonal line. I always draw the diagonal line, and make sure the diagonal seams works before pinning and sewing.
    • Trim 1/4″ away from sewn line. Open and press seam open.

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 4

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 5

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 6

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 7

So, here you see my hodge-podgey pieced quilt center:

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 8

PART 3: TEMPLATES & FUSIBLE MACHINE APPLIQUE

1. The templates provided in the pdf packet are at 100% (no enlargement or reduction required). Click here to download the PDF Packet.

2. They are already reversed for fusible machine applique, except for the leaf labeled SB8. If you want the look exactly like the quilt layout, you will need to reverse that shape before tracing it onto the paper-side of fusible of your choice. [Be sure to note #3 below]

3. Please note that SB 8 is actually SB 9, and SB 9 is actually SB 8.

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 9

4. I use the the “window” cutting method (i.e. cutting away excess fusible and only leave what is necessary) when I prepare my applique pieces when applicable. I didn’t do the “window cutting” for the swirl pieces because they are narrow in width. Upon being fused, I finish with buttonhole stitching.

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 10

If you are unclear about this method, Pat Sloan has amazing tutorials here:

Fusible Applique, How to make it Soft
Pat Sloan’s Fusible Applique Tutorial

5. For quilt center applique, trace applique shapes are found on pdf page 4-7. Prepare and fuse pieces using method of your choice. Refer to pdf page 1 and 3 for placement guide. (Keyword “guide” — you may change the placement of the pieces as desired).

6. We will wait till the very end for the yoyo’s. So, don’t worry about the yoyo’s for now.

7. I use a very sharp applique scissors to cut out the shapes to prevent fraying. Mine is a pair of Olfa 5″ applique scissors.

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 11

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 12

8. I do want to show you the layering at places where the swirly stems meet.

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 13

9. When I buttonhole stitch around the applique shapes, I use the Mako 50wt thread. On my Bernina machine, I used 2.3(W) and 2.6 (L) for this project. To start, I normally pull up my bobbin thread to form a tail with the top thread. After stitching, I pull both thread tails to the back of to tie a knot to secure the starting stitches. To end, I simply take the width of my buttonhole stitch down to 0, and shorten the length and take tiny bit in the last few stitches before cutting my threads.

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 14

10. Here is my quilt center, complete with applique pieces. You will notice I moved my SB 3 leaf further down to the bottom left of the quilt center.

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 15

11. Here are a couple of close up pictures of my applique piece finished with buttonhole stitches. I didn’t stitch around the birds because I will be using quilting to embellish them.

Thread Journey Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard - 16

***

Alrightie, Friends! I hope you had fun tackling the quilt center of our Quilt-Along. Remember to enjoy the journey! I shall see you in two weeks.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

ABOUT WENDY:
QBV03_PieceBlock_12_crop_smallWebsite — Instagram
Originally from Southeast Asia, Wendy came to the US for her tertiary education.  After her degrees in Chemical Engineering, she worked in research in a wind tunnel for a spell.  Nowadays, she is a stay/work-at-home Mom to a 7 year old.  Wendy’s designs have been featured in major quilting publications, both home and abroad.  She is also an author for Landauer Publishing, as well as an online quilting instructor.  She is passionate about encouraging quilters to enjoy their quilting journey.  During her free time, she loves to read history, and indulges in hand needlework.

Foxglove by Aneela Hoey

AHFoxglove-Threads

Aurifil is pleased to introduce Foxglove by Aneela Hoey. This stunning collection features a mix of 50wt, 28wt, and 12wt threads in a darling array of colors. It was created to coordinate with her second collection for Cloud9 Fabrics. Foxglove is inspired by the English countryside and some of the striking wild flowers  – foxgloves, cowslips and primroses – that grow there in abundance. We get a little giddy thinking about the wonderful things we could create with these beauties and hope that this post leaves you feeling inspired to create something of your own.

Foxglove-Fabrics

THREAD COLLECTION DETAILS
Foxglove
100% Aurifil Cotton, 12 Large Spools
Colors included:
2785 – 2277 – 6730 – 2021 (50 WT)
2420 – 2830 – 1133 – 6730 (28 WT)
1133 – 2830 – 2420 – 2277 (12 WT)

Foxglove

To view this info on our website, click here. For purchasing, please contact your local Aurifil Dealer.

THE INTERVIEW
Can you tell us a bit about your background and how you got into this wonderful world of textiles?
I studied printed textile design at Winchester School of Art.  When I finished my degree I worked in a couple of different studios and also freelance.  In those days, I created actual artwork using paint, ink and collage.  Whilst taking a few years out to have my children, I picked up a some hobbies including quilting and through this found myself falling in love with fabric and design all over again.  I decided to try creating some new designs and had them printed digitally using Spoonflower.  I put some up for sale in my small etsy shop and they sold super fast.  I had more printed up but couldn’t keep up with demand so I decided to approach a fabric company.  I emailed Moda one day in early 2010 and they decided to take me on as a new designer.  It was a steep learning curve, I’d decided to try creating my designs digitally but had no clue how to use illustrator.  I taught myself and learned as I designed my first line ‘Sherbet Pips’.  It took me two weeks to design and I still have no idea how I managed to get from zero experience to that in such a short time.

AHFoxglove-Thread+Fabric2

What inspired Foxglove, both in terms of color and pattern?
The initial idea behind Foxglove was to get more of the flowers I loved onto quilting fabric.  A lot of the time fabric flowers tend to be the same old roses or chrysanthemums.  I wanted something unusual but beautiful so I looked at drawings I’ve done over the years of flowers like foxgloves, cowslips, dianthus and so on.  I knew that I wanted them to look very clean and graphic not painterly or overdone and also that movement was very important.  I drew up my designs digitally in illustrator making sure that there was plenty of movement and also incorporating light/shade and colour.  It’s kind of an odd process because I feel like I am making up this picture in my head then trying to create that picture digitally.  One day I was doing some housework and thinking about where else I could take the designs.  I suddenly had this brainwave to throw some foxes in there dashing through the foxgloves.  I had that mental image in my head, so all I had to do was to recreate it.  Initially there were a lot more colours in the designs but this wasn’t making the patterns work well as a group.  The combination of colours used in the Fox In The Foxgloves print were some of the strongest so we started to narrow the colours down to those and that helped things click into place.

AHFoxglove-Colorway1

AHFoxglove-Colorway

I know that this is your second collection with Cloud9. How did you first connect with them and what was the fabric design process like for you?
A couple of years ago my friend Pennie and I went to a talk given by Gina Pantastico of Cloud 9 on the subject of organic fabric at The Village Haberdashery in London.  What I loved most about Gina’s talk was that she was highly informative and passionate about her subject but never preachy.  I had been working on some new designs and a few months later submitted them to Cloud 9 through their online site to see if they would be interested in us working together.  They liked what I sent in and we began developing the collection a little.  In some patterns we altered the layout, in others we played around with scale and so on.  I love working with Michelle (the design director).   I always feel like she helps me move my design thinking forward whilst retaining my original vision for my design work.

AHFoxglove-Flutter2

How did you work through selecting colors for your coordinating thread collection?
I took it very seriously indeed as only a thread and fabric loving girl can!  I set up my Aurifil color card, my Foxglove strike offs and my various spools of Aurifil thread and floss.  I spent a lot of time thinking which colours and threads would work for different sewing situations – piecing or quilting a quilt, making a bag, sewing up a dress.  I thought about topstitching and hand quilting too.  I knew that I wanted a variety of different thread weights included and spent a lot of time draping threads across the fabrics to see which colours would work best across all these scenarios.  The thread box is basically a box of answers to all these questions!  Plus it looks kind of pretty too.

AHFloxglove-Threads2

Do you have a favorite Aurifil thread color/weight?
I love everything Aurifil but if I had to narrow down to just one it would be the light pink 2420 in the 28 wt.  This colour is super pretty and blends or contrasts well with a large number of colours so it works really well when quilting a top pieced from different fabrics.  The 28wt is that little bit thicker so creates a really strong seam, excellent for when making bags and pouches and also gives a beautiful finish when topstitching.  A great all rounder.

AHFoxglove-AllinOneBoxPouch

You just finished a fantastic collection showcase over on your blog. What was it like to work with such a wonderful collection of designers, all eager to create with your fabrics?
All the makers featured in the showcase were people I’ve been following for a while.  In many cases they’ve made something from my fabric or patterns at some point or something else which has caught my attention.  They are all artists who always know instinctively how to use a particular fabric or print.  They just have that eye and imagination to take the fabric somewhere else altogether.  I’m so grateful for getting the chance to collaborate with such a talented team, I learned so much myself, things that it would never have occurred to me to try!
[editor note: see below for showcase project gallery]

What is next on your own project list? What can your fans look forward to next?
I’ve been working away on new patterns and designs most of this year, it’s a continuing process.  Hopefully things will be finished enough to show very soon.

ANEELA’S FOXGLOVE SHOWCASE
Aneela just finished up a tremendous collection showcase both on her blog and through a group of incredibly talented designers. Aneela’s posts are listed below for easy reference. Click through for free projects and added insight into the inspiration behind Foxglove. See below for a gallery of additional projects.

5/26: Foxglove Thread Set
5/30: Foxglove Showcase
5/31: Cowslips
6/1: Foxgloves and Foxes
6/2: Stem Dot
6/4: Evening Primrose
6/6: Foxglove Nesting Boxes
6/7: Flutter
6/8: Foxglove Colourways
6/9: Foxglove Selvedge
6/10: Foxglove Showcase Gallery

GALLERY

THE GIVEAWAY
Foxglove-Rafflecopter2
To enter-to-win,  click here to head to the Rafflecopter entry page, or simply click on the image above. You do not have to complete all the options to be entered but the more options you choose, the more entries you have!  Entries will be accepted from now through 11:59pm Eastern Time on Tuesday, June 21! Winner will be randomly selected and announced here on Wednesday, June 22. Good luck!

UPDATE (6/23): This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to our winner, Chiska!!

ABOUT ANEELA
WebsiteInstagramTwitter — Pinterest
Aneela Hoey is a textile designer and pattern writer.  She designs fabric lines with Cloud 9 fabrics and also previously designed for Moda Fabrics.  Her sewing and embroidery patterns are available in her online shop whilst her embroidery book Little Stitches (published by Stash Books) is widely available in Bookshops.

aneela hoey

** Images by Aneela Hoey & Showcase Designers (as listed)

Aurifil 2016 June Designer of the Month Jacquelynne Steves

Aurifil 2016 Design Team June Jacquelynne Steves collage

I’m Designer, Author, Radio show host Pat Sloan.. June is coming in with sunshine and flowers, which is a perfect fit for our June Designer Jacquelynne Steves She is a beautiful artist and very clever designer! You will want to go right to her website to join her Free Sew Along “Maggie’s First Dance”

I have talked with my friend Jacquelynne a few times on my talk show.. —> 4/20/15, 9/29/14, 3/4/13 and 12/10/12 CLICK to Listen or subscribe by Itunes

Let’s get to know Jacquelynne!

Continue reading

Top Ten Tuesday {Tips & Tricks}

Top Ten-2

One of the most wonderful things about the sewing & quilting community is how supportive we all are of each other. Need advice on what threads to use for the topstitching on a handbag? There’s a post for that. Just getting started with quilting and find yourself overwhelmed with thread types and uses? There’s a post for that. New to reading patterns and feeling lost? There’s a post for that too! We are a remarkable and knowledgable community, always willing to lend a hand, share a tip, and teach a friend. Today, we’ve compiled some of our favorite tips & tricks and hope that you find them as useful as we have!

1. Top Tips for Top (Bag) Topstitching — U Handbag

UHandbag-BagTopStitching

2. Hiding Threads — France Nadeau

FranceNadeau-HidingThreads

3. Aurifil Spools — Aggy Burczyk for Auribuzz

AurifilSpools

4. Preventative Sewing Machine Maintenance — Threads

ThreadsMagazine-SewingMachine

5. Make a Stitch Sampler Book — We All Sew, Bernina

Bernina-StitchSampler

6. Top Tips for Jelly Rolls — Pat Sloan

PatSloan-JellyRollTips

7. How to Read a Sewing Pattern — The Sewing Loft

SewingLoft-SewingPattern

8. How to Sew a Round Hem — On the Cutting Floor

Screen Shot 2016-06-14 at 12.15.27 PM

9. 2 Sewing Tips You Need to Know — Made by ChrissieD

MadebyChrissieD-BetterBagLining

10. Aurifil Thread Info & Carry Case — Sew4Home

Sew4Home-AurifilThread

Electric Quilt Company Giveaway

EZ25Electric Quilt turns 25 this year and to celebrate, they’ve launched a year long party! Every month, they feature a new industry partner, resulting in a list that now includes Fat Quarter Shop (February), Moda (March), Riley Blake (April) and Free Spirit (May). We particularly love June because June is all about Aurifil! We are pleased to have partnered with Electric Quilt to offer a fabulous giveaway over on their blog in addition to another one right here on Auribuzz. We hope that you’ll join us in wishing the Electric Quilt Company a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!

But first, a little background…

Screen Shot 2016-06-09 at 1.53.02 PM

The Electric Quilt Company started as Dean Neumann, then a math professor at Bowling Green State University, married Penny McMorris, a corporate art curator and producer/host of several PBS series on quilting. Both loved quilts. And Dean had an idea he hoped might help quiltmakers develop their design ideas on-screen. So as Penny worked on a new television series, Dean spent spare time teaching himself programming, then developed the first Electric Quilt software program.

Dean’s program debuted on a segment of Penny’s “Great American Quilt” program (WBGU-TV) in 1991. Viewers from across the country called the television station. Penny and Dean collected their names. And The Electric Quilt Company was born.

Brochure for EQ1 which debuted in 1991.

Brochure for EQ1 which debuted in 1991.

Today The Electric Quilt Company is the leading quilt design software company in the world. In the company’s 25 years it has produced over 54 software editions, published over 27 books, and a whole line of downloadable block patterns called My EQ Boutique Blocks.

Screen Shot 2016-06-09 at 1.54.58 PM

But equally important is customer support and education. The company offers an online Forum, classes taught by EQ teachers through EQ University, and a yearly EQ Academy for hands-on learning. Electric Quilt places a special emphasis on offering customer service. Penny & Dean both agree, “We are immensely proud of the people behind our company: how hard they work, how smart they are, how eagerly they tackle new assignments, and as importantly, how kind they are to users who contact us for help.”

Pretty awesome, right? So, how would you like to win your very own copy of EQ7 design software ($189.95 value)? [Insert squeals of delight and mad applause here!] To enter-to-win, simply click here to head to the Rafflecopter entry page, or simply click on the image below. You do not have to complete all the options to be entered but the more options you choose, the more entries you have!  Entries will be accepted from now through 9:00am Eastern Time on Saturday, June 25! Winner will be randomly selected and announced here on by noon on June 25th! Good luck:).

ElectricQuilt-Rafflecopter

If you’re feeling particularly lucky, you might also want to bop over to Behind the Mouse, the electric quilt blog. They are giving away The Heritage Collection by Jenny Doan for Aurifil, a gorgeous thread box with 12 large spools of our perfect 50wt thread. To find out how to enter, simply click here or on the image below.

UPDATE (6/25): This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to our winner, Joanie MacIntosh!! 

HeritageCollection

Fridays really are perfect, aren’t they? Enjoy your weekend & Happy Stitching!!

 

[All images and historical text courtesy of Electric Quilt Company]

Big Stitch Hand Quilting by Sherri Noel

Happy Thursday! We are so excited to introduce you to Sherri Noel, quilter, pattern designer, and sewing blogger for RebeccaMaeDesigns.com. Last year, Sherri hosted the Sew Scrappy Sampler on her blog, releasing one 12″ block a month. Each block focused on a different technique, including foundation paper piecing, appliqué, english paper piecing, traditional piecing, dresden plates and more. Sherri’s quilt used fabrics from her Kaffe Fassett stash, a wonderful collection of bold and bright prints in a wide range of colors. She felt that her finished top, measuring at 90″ x 99″, would be best highlighted by hand-quilting and turned to Aurifil 12wt. We’re so thrilled that she was able to document her process in order to offer a tutorial on Big Stitch Hand Quilting here today. Welcome Sherri!

SherriNoel-BigStitch1

Hello! I’m Sherri Noel from RebeccaMaeDesigns.com and I’m so happy to be a guest here on the Aurifil blog. I’ve recently discovered Aurifil’s 12 weight thread, have used it on several projects now, and I’m loving it! I have a tutorial on Big Stitch Hand Quilting with Aurifil 12 wt. thread to share with you today.

I originally got started with hand quilting due to my aversion to machine quilting. Just when I’d finish all the patchwork on a quilt, I would stress over how I would get it through my machine. So, I got interested in alternative quilting methods and ultimately became addicted to hand quilting. I really love everything about it. I find it so relaxing , love how it looks, and love the organic feel and soft drape of the finished quilt. I really just love it all! If I have the time (and it doesn’t take as much time as you think), I always go for hand quilting… hands down! Some quilts call for big stitches… It’s just so yummy! Plus, you can use it for cross stitch, machine applique (I did!), redwork, hand applique and embellishing.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting2

Here are some of my favorite colors… If you want your stitches to stand out, don’t be afraid to go darker than you think!

SherriNoel-HandQuilting3

Aurifil has plenty of 12 wt. colors to choose from!

SherriNoel-HandQuilting4

So, let’s get started!

Supplies:

  • Aurifil 12 Wt. Thread
  • Quilters Hoop — I used an 18″ Hinterberg Quilt Hoop on a stand for this quilt. I like to use a smaller 14” hoop when I’m quilting in my lap or on the go.
  • Thimble — I use a Metal Open-Sided Thimble by Clover.
  • Scissors — Small pair
  • Needle — I’ve been using a Clover gold eye Chenille #24 for hand quilting and I really like it. It’s sharp, has a nice large eye for threading and is a good fit for my hand.
  • Needle Threader — optional
  • Removable Marking tool — optional, for marking lines or motifs
  • Painters Tape — optional, use as a guide when stitching straight lines.
  • Basted Quilt Sandwich

SherriNoel-HandQuilting5

Getting Started: 

It’s best to begin from the quilt center and work out toward the edges, so position your hoop closest to the center of your quilt and secure. I started my quilting in the center and worked my way around and out to the sides. It’s a little more cumbersome when you’re working in the middle of the quilt, since you have more quilt to wrap your arms around, but just adjust everything until you’ve got a comfortable set up. As you work out to the edges it becomes a little easier to manage the bulk.

Cut a piece of Aurifil 12 wt. thread, no longer than 30″ (manageable length). If you cut your thread longer, it will be too long to work with and it will get fuzzy and weaken if you pull it through the quilt sandwich too many times. Do you have a new 12 wt. spool? Did you know that the round stand comes off the spool so you can find the start of your thread? So convenient!

[editor’s note: There is a terrific Thread Matters post all about Aurifil spools right here.]

SherriNoel-HandQuilting6

Thread your needle and tie a simple overhand knot at the long end.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting7

If you need a needle threader, I recommend this style pictured below. It’s strong enough to pull the thread through the needle without the threader breaking.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting8

Start by inserting the needle approximately 1/2″ from where you wish to begin quilting. Push your needle through the top and batting only. Then travel through quilt and bring your needle up at your starting point.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting9

Pull the thread until the knot reaches the quilt top and give it a sharp tug ~ it will pop through the quilt top and embed itself in the batting. You will get the hang of this after a few tries. If you find your thread comes all the way through without getting stuck within the batting, try weaving your needle in the batting a little before coming out at the start point.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting10

Let’s get quilting. I quilt toward myself at a slight diagonal, (rather than right to left) and I find it the easiest way for me. Do what feels comfortable for you. Start a stitch with the needle sticking straight down through the quilt. I’m right handed and I have my right hand on top of the quilt making the stitch, and my left hand guiding the needle on the back of my quilt. In the next picture, my left hand is under the quilt sandwich and the needle is just poking through the other side resting on my finger tip. (yes, this fingertip will get a little sore…)

SherriNoel-HandQuilting11

When I feel the point of the needle come through the back of the quilt with my left hand fingertip, I tilt the needle backward away from me. Next, I push the finger behind the quilt up, creating a small bump on the quilt top where your needle is. With your right hand thumb, push down on the quilt top in front of the needle, making the bump more defined, and now you can push the needle through that bump.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting12

Also notice in the picture above how my needle rests right in the lip of my thimble.

Review steps: 

  •  needle straight up and down, just through quilt sandwich touching left hand finger tip
  •  tilt needle back
  •  push up with left finger from under quilt
  •  push down with right thumb in front of needle to make the defined bump
  •  push needle through bump

Here is a side view of the bump created by my left finger at the back and my right thumb.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting13

When you get started, your thimble may feel unnatural on your finger, and you may struggle through the first several stitches, but it will quickly get easier. Stick with it! Your left finger tips will get sore and there are some products you can use like another thimble or little ‘dots’ to stick on your finger to protect them. Personally I don’t like having anything on my left hand fingers, I need to be able to feel the needle.

Once you are comfortable with making the stitch, try rocking your needle to take 2-3 stitches at a time before pulling the thread through.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting14

Again, look at the needle on my thimble in the photo above. All those little dimples do good work at keeping my needle in place.

When you are ready for another length of thread, or done your quilting, you will need to tie off and embed the end of your thread in the batting.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting15

Start by tying another overhand knot in the end of your thread.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting16

Slide the knot down to the top of the quilt.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting17

Insert needle back into hole that the thread is coming out of and travel through the batting only, then back out of top about a 1/2″ away.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting18

Pull the needle through and give the tread a sharp tug to embed the knot into the batting and carefully snip off the tail.

SherriNoel-HandQuilting19

That’s all there is to it!

If you’re new to hand quilting, start on small projects like I did, then when you’re comfortable, move your way up to a large project.

Here are a few more pictures of my finished quilt…

photo 24

photo 22

Notice how the quilting can really make your piecing or applique pop like in this Dahlia block.  The stitching around the shell shapes really make them stand out.

photo 25

The most important thing is to have fun with Aurifil 12 wt. big stitch quilting and enjoy the process.

photo 26

And don’t forget that the quilting on the back of the blocks can be just as much fun to admire as the front!

photo 27

I hope you liked this tutorial and give big stitch hand quilting a try. You can find additional pictures and information about this quilt and more on my blog — rebeccamaedesigns.com.

photo 19

If you’re wondering how you can use 12 wt. thread in your machine, check out this post.

Happy Quilting!
— Sherri 

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

ABOUT SHERRI:
Blog
— Tutorials — Facebook — Instagram — Pinterest
sherri 250x250 300dpiSherri Noel is a quilter, a pattern designer and a sewing blogger. You can find her bag and quilt patterns plus tutorials on her blog at rebeccamaedesigns.com, named after her daughters. She is best known for her scrappy block-of-the-month programs, big stitch hand quilting, quilt as you go tutorials (joining quilted blocks) and her popular Madawaska Mittens made from recycled wool sweaters. Visit her blog and say hello!  

 

 

Showcase Sunday {6.5}

SHOWCASE SUNDAY

Welcome back to Showcase Sunday, our forum to showcase the beautiful work that all of you do! We took a short break for Quilt Market and we’re back with some  magnificent images of what you’ve been creating. We’re thrilled to share some of them here today. Keep tagging us and sharing your work and we’ll feature some of our favorites here every other Sunday. Don’t forget to check in on Facebook & Instagram to see more! Happy Stitching:).

(Click on any image below to learn more via the the artist’s Instagram or on the actual link to visit the artist’s blog)

1.  The Not So Dramatic Life

@cassandra.beaver

@cassandra.beaver

2. Charm About You

@charmaboutyou

@charmaboutyou

3. During Quiet Time

@duringquiettime

@duringquiettime

4. Betz White

@betz_white

@betz_white

5. Campbell Soup Diary

@campbell_soup_diary

@campbell_soup_diary

6. Quilts of a Feather

@quiltnfeathers

@quiltnfeathers

7. Minki Kim

@zeriano

@zeriano

8. Quilts by Marisela

@marisela_quilts

@marisela_quilts

9. Dizzy Quilts

@dizzyquiltsblog

@dizzyquiltsblog

10. Whole Circle Studio

@wholecirclestudio

@wholecirclestudio

11. Moobird Stitches

@peaches1003

@peaches1003

12. Good Starter

@good_starter

@good_starter

13. Lilly Ella

@lillyellasworld

@lillyellasworld

14. Quilts by Laurel

@laurelsstichery

@laurelsstichery

15. Mommy2Lu

@mommy2lu

@mommy2lu

 

Thread Journey: Quilt Along with Wendy Sheppard

Today, we are thrilled to introduce the incredibly talented (and super sweet) Wendy Sheppard of Ivory Spring. She is a quilter, an author, a pattern designer, an Aurifil thread collection designer, and an educator. Her knowledge is vast, her skills enviable. We are ever in awe of her creations and couldn’t be more excited to welcome her to Auribuzz for a 7-part Quilt Along. Over the course of the next 3 months, you’ll have the opportunity to attend Wendy’s online classroom as she shares her tips & techniques for creating one of her treasured quilts, Thread Journey. So, without further pause, let’s offer a HUGE Aurifil welcome to Wendy!!

banner1

Hello Everyone, my name is Wendy Sheppard, and I am an absolute threadaholic (particularly Aurifil’s threads). I blog over at www.ivoryspring.wordpress.com. I am very happy to share with you a free Quilt-Along pattern of the quilt that was hung at Aurifil‘s booth at Fall Market last year. I have simply titled my quilt Thread Journey, because the quilt encompasses my own quilting journey from one who never even touched a sewing machine until about 11 years ago, to one who is playing a small part in the quilting industry…

Thread Journey, Wendy Sheppard - 1

Finished Size of Quilt: 54″ x 54″

StarBirdQuiltFinal

How this works:
I intend for this Sew-Along to work as kind of playing Round Robin with yourself. What I mean by that is that this entire quilt is going to be made with scraps from your stash. So I will alert you what you should prepare ahead of each installment fabric-wise during the construction process, but this quilt is meant to be as colorful as you wish it to be!

Tentative Schedule:
June 2: Quilt Construction, Intro — Today
June 16: Quilt Construction, Part 1
June 30: Quilt Construction, Part 2
July 14: Quilt Construction, Part 3
July 28: Process of Quilting, Part 1
August 4: Process of Quilting, Part 2
August 11: Process of Quilting, Part 3

Techniques:
1. Simple piecing, with tips for accurate points in the star blocks.

Thread Journey, Wendy Sheppard - 2

2. Fusible machine applique (with a tiny bit of embroidery)

Thread Journey, Wendy Sheppard - 3

3. After the top is constructed, I will spend three separate posts on how I am quilting my quilt, as well as domestic machine quilting tips that I hope would be helpful to you! We might not quilt the Sew-Along quilt exactly like I had quilted the original version because the quilting was pretty all free-handed and unmarked. But we will be doing something similar and FUN!

Thread Journey, Wendy Sheppard - 4

4. And finally, embellishing with yoyo’s.

Thread Journey, Wendy Sheppard - 5

A Few More Pictures:

Subtle Strings:
You will notice from the quilt back pictures that I had used different color threads to quilt my quilt. The colors are from my Subtle Strings collection. You can read more about the collection here: https://ivoryspring.wordpress.com/2016/04/01/thread-talk-from-my-sewing-machine-69/

Sew-Along version of Thread Journey:
1. The original Thread Journey quilt is currently on tour with Alex Veronelli when he lectures at various quilt shops. Perhaps you might get a chance to see it in person.
2. In order for me to show the steps in the entire process for this sew-along version, I am re-making the quilt (so that I can keep it, ha!) with some basic fabrics generously supplied by Windham Fabrics. I picked basic fabrics that aren’t so busy with prints so that I can better show the quilting later on. But feel free to raid your stash to find whichever and whatever that suit your fancy!

Thread Journey, Wendy Sheppard - 9

3. For June 16, we will construct the quilt center that finishes at 20″ x 20″.

a. For the Quilt Center, you may either
–  just use a 20 1/2″ x 20 1/2″ square
– piece the quilt center using my design with 2-1/2″ strips. So collect about 10-20
2-1/2″ strips (all those leftovers from your quilts made with precut strips)
– or you may piece it in anyway you would like as long as the quilt center will
measure 20 1/2″ x 20 1/2″ raw edge to raw edge.

b. You will need scraps of fabric for the applique (using the diagram below as a guide), as well as any fusible you would use for machine applique. If you have never done this before, I will have more details on June 16.

StarBirdCenterArt

Alrighty Friends, I shall see you again on June16 — I am SO excited!

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

ABOUT WENDY:
QBV03_PieceBlock_12_crop_smallWebsiteInstagram
Originally from Southeast Asia, Wendy came to the US for her tertiary education.  After her degrees in Chemical Engineering, she worked in research in a wind tunnel for a spell.  Nowadays, she is a stay/work-at-home Mom to a 7 year old.  Wendy’s designs have been featured in major quilting publications, both home and abroad.  She is also an author for Landauer Publishing, as well as an online quilting instructor.  She is passionate about encouraging quilters to enjoy their quilting journey.  During her free time, she loves to read history, and indulges in hand needlework.

2016 Spring Quilt Market, Part 3

AurifilBooth10

Welcome to Spring Quilt Market, Part 3, our final wrap up post of all things Quilt Market! We had such a great time walking the aisles , soaking in the vivid colors, new patterns, and basking in the glory of overwhelming creative inspiration. So, let’s dive right in!!

We absolutely adore working with Art Gallery Fabrics and had so much fun with the staff and amazing team of designers over Market weekend. We partnered with them on our Missing Market Giveaway and they popped by our booth for a quick tour and chat with Alex on Sunday.

Pictured here is lovely designer Amy Sinibaldi debuting her brand new collection with Art Gallery Fabrics, Playground. Her Aurifil thread collection, Sweetly Stitched, was released earlier this year and we just love how wonderfully her colors coordinate with her fabrics. To learn more about Amy and Sweetly Stitched, visit our collection announcement post.

AmySinibaldi

Gorgeous booth display to feature Art Gallery Organics.

ArtGalleryOrganics

The amazing Pat Bravo simply glows with excitement in her booth. Here, she showcases two of her Aurifil collections, Rustic Vive and Intense Glow.

PatBravo

Sharon Holland shows off a stunning handmade dress along with her Aurifil thread collection, Color Story, available in both Large & Small. Sharon is such a huge Aurifil champion and we love seeing her creations!

SharonHolland

Maureen Cracknell never fails to amaze with her Market booths. We are in love with the Nightfall display to showcase her new Art Gallery collection. Here, she shows off Bohemian Garden, her last thread collection with Aurifil.

MaureenCracknell

Susan Emory of Swirly Girl Designs had a wonderfully bright booth, showcasing the fabrics of her new collection for Michael Miller, Summer Lovin’. All arrows point to Aurifil in one of her displays!

SusanEmory

SusanEmory3

Tula Pink also wows us with her displays. At Spring Market, she introduced her brand new show-stopping collection with Aurifil — a custom printed box of 45 Small Spools in a fabulous array of colors. The box coordinates particularly well with her new Free Spirit fabric collection, Slow & Steady, in the Strawberry color way.

TulaPink

We love seeing Lori Holt of Bee in my Bonnet. Alex took a moment to pop by to say hello and Lori, of course, had one of her Aurifil Happy Colors collections on hand to showcase! We simply adore the Cherries quilt!

Designer Jill Finley recently signed on with Riley Blake and was at Market to present her debut collection with them, Meadow Sweets. We had so much fun working on the coordinating thread box!

The Portage Lake BOM Quilt looks absolutely stunning on display. It uses fabrics from Minick & Simpson‘s new Moda fabric collection, Grand Traverse Bay, and threads from their brand new Aurifil thread collection, Portage Lake. To learn more about the BOM, head here.

Minick&SimpsonPortageLake

We spotted this amazing quilt in the Moda Grunge booth. WOW!!! Katy Perry never looked so good!

ModaGrunge

We always love to see what Kate Spain has going on. This quilt is a stunning display of fabrics for her new Moda collection, Grand Canal.

KateSpain

Joanna Figueroa of Fig Tree Quilts shares a gorgeous collection of quilts in support of her latest collection, Chestnut.

JoannaFigueroa

Corey Yoder had the sweetest display of our threads in her Moda booth in support of her new collection Sundrops. Those colors make us want to dive right into Summer!

Darling Little Dickens by Lydia Nelson for Moda has us reminiscing about our younger years and we absolutely love the ‘I Love You’ quilt on the right. Wouldn’t that make the perfect baby gift?

LydiaNelsonModa

We had a chance to visit with Heather Jones and Samantha Lindgren of A Gathering of Stitches. Heather put together a gorgeous booth to launch Color Dash, her debut collection with Robert Kaufman fabrics.  We are thrilled that she selected colors for a coordinating Aurifil thread collection.

Heather&Samantha

How sweet is this kitty quilt in Erin Michael‘s booth for Moda?

ErinMichael

Our new Creative Director, Erin Sampson, had a chance to share a quick hug with the amazing Pat Sloan. Pat is one of Aurifil’s biggest champions and we are ever grateful for her support (and for things like the Aurifil DOM, the Splendid Sampler and so much more!)

Erin&Pat

Felice Regina had the most amazing bursts of color in her booth for Luna Sol, her debut collection with Windham Fabrics. We love the bunny!

Kimberly Jolly of Fat Quarter Shop, It’s Sew Emma and Ruby Red Designs popped by the Aurifil booth to check out her debut thread collection, First Blush. True to the name, the collection showcases the sweetest lineup of colors, perfectly matched to the fabrics in her new collection with Windham Fabrics.

KimberleyJolly

We missed meeting Aneela Hoey at Market, but were thrilled to see Foxglove, her new fabric collection with Cloud9 Fabrics. Don’t you just love how the threads are nestled into the display?

AneelaHoey2

Annie Smith of Quilting Stash popped by to say hello and shared this quilt with us. WOW. The appliqué is simply perfect and the colors make us think of a perfect Spring day. Annie is a huge fan of our 28wt thread for appliqué.

AnnieSmith

Elisabeth Phillips of Island Batik came for a visit to talk about a handful of upcoming collections. We were proud to launch new collections for Island Batik designers Fourth and Sixth Designs, Claudia Pfeil, Kathy Engle, and Tammy Silvers at Spring Market.

Erin&Elizabeth

And… that’s a wrap! Thank you so much for all who were able to pop by to say hello. We absolutely adore having a chance to see you all in person and are already looking forward to meeting in Houston.

For more information on our latest collections, keep an eye on our website. We just launched a brand new collection page and will be adding to it throughout the week.

Until next time!

2016 Spring Quilt Market, Part 2

AurifilBooth17

There is something particularly thrilling about attending International Quilt Market. There is always a buzz of excitement in the air. Collections ready to debut, new products to announce, old friends to seek out, new friends to meet… The event is super-charged with inspiration starting with setup day, straight through the final hour on the last day.

We kicked off our experience on Thursday, May 19th with a lineup of three Schoolhouse Sessions by three incredibly talented designers: Pat Sloan, Tula Pink & Susan Emory. Schoolhouse Sessions are designed to educate shops, to give them the tools needed to connect with their customers and to fuel creative inspiration.

Pat Sloan is a true Aurifil Ambassador, in addition to being a quilt author, a radio/podcast show Producer & host, and a fabric designer. She has worked with Aurifil for years and has run the Aurifil Designer of the Month program since 2011.

Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 2.34.08 PM

In Salt Lake City, she spoke to a full house of captive listeners and shared how to use the free DOM program to inspire sales and motivate consumers to create.

Aurifilbooth19

Tula Pink was one of the first to design a collection for Aurifil and presented her latest masterpiece at a short Schoolhouse. You can always count on Tula to have some amazing statement pieces — just check out that fabulous bag on the right in the image below. The bag was made from a pattern by Sew Sweetness and all 45 colors of Tula’s latest Aurifil collection were used to embroider the eyes.

Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 2.34.49 PM

The Ultimate Collection features a custom printed case containing 45 small spools of 100% Aurifil Cotton in 50wt. The collection was incredibly well received by shop owners and we anticipate that you’ll start seeing it in stores next month.

Our final Schoolhouse was presented by Susan Emory of Swirly Girl Designs. She is a true Aurifil Champion and even created a fantastic handout for her attendees. Susan focused on creating kits using Aurifil thread and how shop owners can put together kits that their consumers will love. She also introduced her brand new Aurifil Thread Collection, Summer Lovin’, hand-selected to coordinate perfectly with her latest fabric collection for Michael Miller.

Thursday evening was ALL about Sample Spree, one of our favorite shopping events of the year! Show attendees lined up hours in advance, hoping for the chance to snag a Fat Quarter Bundle of an exclusive collection or perhaps a favorite Aurifil thread collection. We started with this:

SampleSpreeBefore

and ended with this:

SampleSpreeAfter

People do love their threads!

Friday brought the open of the trade show itself and, as usual, the days sped by. We are always so grateful for the opportunity to meet with our Aurifil Designers, to chat with shop owners and reconnect with distributors. It’s an absolute delight to make that personal connection!

Barbara Eikmeier was one of the first to come by the booth. We are thrilled to present her debut Aurifil Thread Collection, Vintage 30s – Ruby’s Treasures to coordinate with her latest fabric collection with Paintbrush Fabrics. Featuring 10 hand-selected colors of our Aurifloss, it was created in conjunction with McKim Studios and pairs popular 30s-style prints with the embroidery designs of Ruby Short McKim.

BarbaraEikmeier

Leslie Levy and Carolyn Ducey showcased the latest collaboration between Aurifil, Moda Fabrics and IQSCM. We simply adore that proceeds from the sales of Collection for a Cause – Preservation go directly to IQSCM (International Quilt Study Center & Museum). The threads are stunning and the reproduction quilt created from the fabrics is a total show-stopper!

Leslie&Carolyn

Moda Collection for a Cause Preservation  Quilt (100x100)

Lynne Hagmeier, of Kansas Troubles Quilters, debuted Bees ‘n Blooms, a new collection for Moda Fabrics. Her coordinating Aurifil thread box was also on display, but we were even more in love with the clever way that she used the small Aurifil spools in her booth design. Can you spot them?

LynneHagmeier

The amazing Jenny Doan popped by to say hello and shared a moment with Alex. Her debut collection with Aurifil was just released and should be available in stores in July. The Heritage Collection is a gorgeous collection of 50wt threads on large spools.

JennyDoan

We were so thrilled to see the lovely McKenna Ryan who was at market presenting Tigerfish, a new line of premier batiks for Robert Kaufman. Her coordinating thread collection, The Tropical Box, will be available next month!

McKennaRyan

Her label may just be one of our new favorites!

McKennaRyan-TropicalBox

Brenda Ratliff of Pink Castle Fabrics was at Market presenting her brand new collection with RJR Fabrics, One Room Schoolhouse. Her coordinating Aurifil Thread Collection was the perfect accent to the booth, and we love the container of perfectly selected threads!

RJR never fails to inspire with their market displays. Their company hashtag, #quiltwithlove, seems to be interpreted anew at every event. We just adored the book-themed heart on display in Salt Lake City!

RJR

What a treat to run into Amy Friend at the book signing for her latest release, Intentional Piecing. Amy is a huge fan of Aurifil threads and used them in every single quilt featured in her book! She is also the Aurifil Designer of the Month for May!

AmyFriend

How cute is this display of Aurifloss in Shari Butler of Doohickey Design Studio‘s booth?

DooHickey2

We also spotted some small Aurifil spools on display in Corey Yoder‘s booth. She was at Market presenting Sundrops, her new collection with Moda Fabrics.

It was a pretty terrific Market kick-off! We’ll have more Market love for you tomorrow. Until then, Happy Stitching!!