Hi everyone! Happy May, nearly June how can that be???!!!!!
Right and Wrong Sides of Batting… One main benefit of having a quilt store in my home is all the information that walks into my house in the heads of women coming shopping for fabric. Once I’ve learned it I have a habit of thinking everyone must know it, but with respect to the right and wrong sides of batting I was reminded recently that not everyone does know about it. So here is what I’ve learned.
If you are having a problem with your batting “bearding”, or poking through the backing fabric when you are quilting it, it may be that you are putting your backing into your quilt upside down. Most battings these days are needlepunched onto a scrim, a fine polyester mesh whose purpose it is to stabilize the batting and prevent it from migrating into balls of batting over time. The process of needlepunching creates a right and wrong side to the batting. Here’s what the APQS website has to say about bearding…
If the batting has been "needle punched” then it has a right side and a wrong side. Your quilting needle should penetrate the batting on the right side. Load your quilting frame with the batting’s right side facing up. To find the right side of the batting, study the surface carefully. The right side will have more indentations or "dimples” where the manufacturer’s needle-punching machine pressed the fibers together. The wrong side of the batting will typically be rougher, with more small "pills” or balls of batting. It will look like a worn sweater that needs a "shave.” (Warm and Natural batting’s right side is the "dirty side”.)
So if you check your batting and find the smooth side, put the smooth side against the top of the quilt, and the rough side against the back of the quilt! Now you know too:-)
Hanging Diamonds Quilting… Here is something I learned this week from Gladys about a neat way to quilt your quilt for all of you who are a bit fearful of free motion quilting. Gladys learned this technique from Shelley of the Bernie and Shelley team…
Once your quilt is sandwiched, take painters’ tape and attach it to the quilt top running from one corner to the diagonally opposite corner. Then run a series of other strips of tape parallel to each other at about 3” intervals until you’ve covered your quilt top with a set of diagonal strips of tape all running the same direction. Now quilt along each side of the painters’ tape from beginning to end of each strip. This gives you a series of straight lines at alternating half inch and then 3 inch intervals. Remove all the painters’ tape. Now reapply the painters tape in the same configuration but going in the opposite direction, starting with the other two diagonal corners and moving out in parallel lines about 3” apart. Then quilt these painters’ tape strips on both sides of the tape. The result, when you remove the tape, is a series of hanging diamonds, both large and small, covering your quilt top.
So if you think about it, you could also use this technique for just a portion of your quilt top, and do something different in other areas. Just makes your mind start churning, doesn’t it???!!!
Crinkling your fabric… This is a technique I learned from Robin Fischer in an excellent workshop she taught. This wasn’t the purpose of the workshop, just one of the many “by the way” things we learn when we go to a workshop to learn something else:/)
Robin described a process of turning any fabric into a textured piece of fabric. I’ve just done it with some blue silk dupioni and it works beautifully. Three easy steps… here they are:
Wet your fabric, wring it out, and then squeeze it as tightly as possible into a ball and secure the ball with rubber bands… Here’s a photo of my two little blue balls
Leave your little fabric balls to dry thoroughly or, if you are impatient like me, put them in a dryer and listen to them go ker-chunk ker-chunk until they are dry!
Unwrap your fabric balls, stretching out the fabric until you have the amount of crinkle that you want and then iron the fabric onto a light weight fusible interfacing such as Presto Sheer. The result is a personally made, to your specifications, crinkled fabric to add texture to your quilt! Here are a couple of photos of mine… I’m so pleased with myself!
New Shipment of Yarn Dyes… I just received my fifth shipment from Japan, replenishing my yarn-dye selection and allowing me to make more of the Shizuka quilt kit. Here’s the photo of the quilt:
So I wanted you to know the fabrics are here. If you want one of these kits they will be ready soon… and if you just want to try the yarn-dyes in your own quilt design, I now have an excellent selection of them for you.
Finally, the Saturday June 4 Batik Blowout Sale… Just a reminder that Saturday June 4 from 10 - 5, all batiks will be 25% off, and there are a lot of lovely new ones for you to choose from. Hope to see some of you here the first Saturday in June!