Geode Quilt Along by Alyce of Blossom Heart Quilts

Geode QAL with BlossomHeartQuilts

Today we are excited to share the Geode Quilt Along hosted by Aurifil Artisan Alyce Blyth of Blossom Heart Quilts! The Geode quilt is a stunning project that can be made in four different sizes: Baby, Throw, Queen, & King.

This week, the QAL is all about choosing fabrics for your version of the quilt and of course that means choosing the perfect Aurifil thread to go alongside those fabrics. 😉

Selecting Aurifil thread to match Tula Pink fabrics

We adore the Tula Pink fabrics and Aurifil threads that Alyce has chosen for her baby version of the Geode quilt. She will be playing around with some fun free motion quilting, so she selected threads that coordinate well with each of the different prints.

Alyce was kind enough to send us the Geode pattern, and we stitched up a block using Valori Wells fabric combined with Robert Kaufman Essex Linen. We’re looking forward to piecing more blocks in this monochrome blue theme. Piecing was done using Aurifil #4140 Wedgewood, and will be quilted with variegated 40wt #4655 Storm at Sea.

Geode Quilt Block

Head over to Blossom Heart Quilts to learn more about Alyce’s fabric recommendations for the quilt and to enter to win in an amazing giveaway sponsored by us! 😉


About Alyce
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Alyce Blyth

Fueled by lattes, Alyce loves designing, making, teaching, snuggling, and giving quilts (except making binding, she doesn’t like that). She is inspired by her family, her surroundings, and of course the pretty fabric, to quilt according to her motto: create what you love, with love, to love.

 

Tips for Combining Machine + Hand Quilting

Today we are thrilled to have a post from our talented Aurifil Artisan, Jessica Skultety of Quilty Habit! She created a beautiful quilt using  Anna Maria Horner‘s new 12wt thread collection, Stitch Gallery. It is available as a Limited Edition in the super fabulous wooden box you’ll see below, and also in our standard cardboard packaging. She has kindly shared some of her favorite tips for how she combines hand quilting and machine quilting! Take it away Jessica!


Hi! I’m Jessica Skultety of Quilty Habit, and I teach, lecture, blog, and quilt obsessively. As an Aurifil Artisan, I’d love to share some quilting ideas with you today. Combining machine and hand work isn’t a new idea, but it’s an option that can add another special detail to your quilt. You don’t have to add a lot of either one to make a huge impact!

First, I’d like to introduce you to my latest passion project, “Bouquet,” and explain the process behind quilting it. Then, I’ll share 5 tips and more inspiration!

Quilting is my favorite part of the quilt-making process. It didn’t start out that way, but as soon as I started to free motion quilt on my home machine, I caught the bug. This is not to say that I don’t quilt with my walking foot – because I do!

One of my main goals for a quilt is to showcase or emphasize its design with the quilting itself. This is sometimes difficult to figure out, but it gets easier over time. It’s like deciding how to decorate a room: how will you accentuate its features? Often, for me, this means creating movement with waves and spirals.

I’m also a huge, longtime fan of Anna Maria Horner’s saturated, colorful fabrics, so I quickly began to dream up a wall quilt with her older fabrics and newest line, Floral Retrospective (which, luckily, contains some reprinted fabrics in brand spanking new colorways), plus her new special edition 12 weight Aurifil thread collection. Aren’t they so beautiful (and that box!!)? Since orange peel quilts are my favorites to make, I used petals as a starting point, much like my first orange peel quilt, Scatter.

After making the petals and adhering them with fusible and raw edge applique, I machine quilted in a circle from the bottom left to emphasize the circular, spreading out motion of the orange peels/flower petals. I quilted with 50 weight Aurifil 2600 (Dove Gray, my favorite) so that it would somewhat blend in the background but show on the petals.

My walking foot was a big help here; I marked the first couple of circles with my hera marker, starting at the bottom left corner, and then followed the lines roughly. You can use the guide on your walking foot to follow previous circles, but I chose to make them imprecise (imprecision in quilting is my favorite).

I’m admittedly a novice hand quilter, and I wanted to keep it simple but striking. First, I chose the Anna Maria Horner 12 weight threads that matched the quilt’s colors (leaving out just orange and yellow). The colors I used: 2566 (Wisteria), 4020 (Fuchsia), 2026 (Chalk), 1125 (Medium Teal), 4662 (Spotted, variegated green), 1248 (Grey Blue), 2845 (Light Juniper), and 3660 (Bubblegum, variegated pink). Can I just say how much I’ve fallen in love with using variegated threads for hand-quilting?

I marked my lines with a blue water soluble marker and ruler, right over the machine quilting. Then, I blissfully sat on my couch for a few hours with an audiobook in hand, stitching away. I’ve tried a few different hand stitching threads, and admittedly I love Aurifil because of the huge variety of colors and smoothness of the thread gliding through three layers. The thread doesn’t split easily. I wore my thimble but barely needed it!

Originally, I hand-quilted one line extending from almost every petal and between, but on second thought I decided to add another line of contrasting thread next to it. The quilting shows even more now! I love how it shows up on the back, too:

We took Bouquet for a walk down a (usually crowded) alley in Easton, PA. It was simply too windy to take more pictures, but this one will do! I’m really pleased that the hand-quilting shows up from far away. Again, another element added to my quilt.

5 Tips for Combining Machine + Hand Quilting

  • Machine quilt first, then hand quilt.
  • Use a frame or don’t – find what works for you. I’ve only hand-quilted small quilts and projects so far (see below) so a frame hasn’t felt necessary.
  • If you want to achieve consistency with your hand stitches and you’re new like me, try sashiko stitching first. If you buy a premarked fabric, you can practice making a beautiful design. Aurifil 12 weight threads can be used for this, too!
  • Get yourself a needle minder. Mine are magnetized and stick onto my project, so I never lose anything!
  • Be open to imperfection. It’s impossible for every single stitch to be perfectly straight, every time. Let loose and embrace the notion that you’re making a beautiful handmade piece of art

More Examples

  • I love how my friend Chawne Kimber (@cauchycomplete) regularly combines hand and machine quilting. Check out the details she added to her Cotton Sophisticate quilt.
  • Within the last year, I’ve been combining lots of machine quilting with hand stitching. Here are some other samples with links to their blog posts:

Clockwise from top left: “Starlight,” Fall Table Topper, Sashiko Flower Pillow, “Fractured Cathedral Window.”

And, if you’ve read all the way to the end, thank you! And thanks to Aurifil for providing the threads for this project. Let me know – have you tried combining hand and machine? If not, what’s holding you up?


Thank you so much Jessica! The quilt is beautiful and the tips and tricks are certainly a wonderful resource for anyone looking to try out this technique. You can find more details about all three of the Anna Maria Horner limited edition collections HERE. And stay tuned to the Auribuzz blog for the official collection announcement!

Weekend Quilting & Giveaway!

Aurifil Artisan Jemima Flendt of Tied with a Ribbon has just released Weekend Quilting, her debut book with Fons & Porter. The book is a gorgeous representation of a wide variety of techniques, presenting the opportunity to build your quilting skills. We had a chance to chat with Jemima about the book and are thrilled to share that interview with you here today. And… there’s a giveaway because who doesn’t love a good giveaway?

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Welcome Aurifil Artisans!

Today is a very exciting day in Aurifil’s world… it’s the day we get to announce our 2017 Aurifil Artisans! We are beyond excited about this incredible lineup of quilters, sewists, and makers. They come to us from all over the world from India, to the UK, to the US. They are quilters, pattern designers, fabric designers, bag-makers, long arm quilters, crafters, and tailors. They love to create and love to work with Aurifil thread! You’ll be learning more about this wonderful team throughout the year, and will be seeing more of their work both here on Auribuzz & on our social media accounts.

Aurifil Artisans

Row1: Renee – Quilts of a Feather, Pamela – Pamela’s Quilts, Sandy – Hissyfitz Designs, Richy Jr – Spazzy Cat Designs — Row2: Shannon – Eva Blakes Makery, Shruti – 13 Woodhouse Rd, Taunja – Carried Away Quilting, Sheri – Whole Circle Studio — Row3:  Sharon – Pine Valley Quilts, Wendy – Wendy’s Quilts and More — Row4: Lisa – In the Boondocks, Yvonne – Quilting Jetgirl, Sedef – Down Grapevine Lane, Jessica – Desert Bloom Quilting

Untitled design (1)

Row1: Afton – Quilting Mod, Alyce – Blossom Heart Quilts, Ange – A Little Patchwork, Blair – Wise Craft Handmade — Row2: Casey – Casey Taylor Threads, Connie – Freemotion by the River, Cheryl – Meadow Mist Designs, Erin – Quilts by Starlight — Row3: Faith – Sarana Ave, Erin – Sew at Home Mummy, Gillian – Gillian Travis Textile Art, Jayne – Twiggy & Opal — Row4: Geta – Getas Quilting Studio, Jessica – Quilty Habit, Jemima – Tied With a Ribbon, Jess – Elven Garden Quilts

Untitled design (2)

Row1: Karin – Karin Jordan Studio, Karen – Lady K Quilts, Kim – Persimon Dreams, Kitty – Night Quilter — Row2: Lauren – Molly and Mama, Laura – Slice of Pi Quilts, Laura – Sonic Stitches Quilts, Leslie – Seasoned Homemaker — Row3: Lee – May Chappell, Laurie – Neon Kitty Quilts, Lori – The Inbox Jaunt, Lisa – Sew What You Love — Row4: Mary – Mary Menzer Designs, Mel – Piece, Love & Happiness, Maryellen – Mary Mack Made Mine, Paige – Quilted Blooms

Congratulations again to the entire team!

Aurifil Artisans

 

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You know Aurifil as your favorite thread on the market… The thread with incredible strength and sheen… the thread made with 100% Egyptian Mako Cotton by a dedicated team working for a small family company based in Italy. We stand by the quality and do our best every day to ensure that our product is one that makes us proud, one that makes our hearts sing. But at the end of the day… Aurifil is nothing without you — the creatives, the visionaries, the designers, the artists… You do amazing things with our thread, always pushing the boundaries, trying new things, wowing us with your innovations and your artistry.

With that in mind, we’ve revamped our Blogger/Artist program and are proud to introduce our Aurifil Artisan Program! The program offers a wonderful collaborative opportunity… a way for us to partner to herald the work that you do and spread the Aurifil love.

We have a limited number of spots available for the first year and have developed an application which can be reviewed, filled out, and submitted below. Applications will be accepted until Friday, April 7. Our Aurifil Artisans will be contacted by April 14 and introduced here on our blog shortly thereafter.