Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Machine Applique - Lessons Learned - WOW

Eight Grandkids -- One Quilt!

It's been on my list for the last few summers.... replacing the black, floral, hand-me-down, store-bought quilt at the lake with something that "Gramma Made".  So when our little slumber pack is resting by the water... they're on a "hand made" quilt and I have a better background for pictures!  I wanted to use materials from items that we've given to the kids and have a beautiful scrappy applique quilt - with texture and familiar things (for the little ones).... and made with love !

I'm on a roll.

I'm using several "New to Me" techniques on this large quilt - which means lots of Lessons Learned !
Heat-n-Bond Fusible Interfacing "Lite" - Draw shape onto either side of product, place over fabric with "dots" to right side of fabric
So far, I am very pleased with this product - only one side is fusible -it's very "lite" so you don't have that flat feeling after you've ironed it.
Stitch 1/4 inch allowance - Clip Corners/Curves - Slit Interfacing
Turn right side out - Now the dots are ready to be ironed and stitched down

Before I stitched the applique to the background, I layered a piece of batting to the back to achieve a "trapunto" effect on the front - then I stitched the applique piece with invisible thread and a zig-zag stitch to secure it on the front and cut away the excess batting on the back!
Lesson Learned -- instead of doing the Trapunto on the back of the background fabric, integrate it into your initial sewing of the shape.  Fabric and interfacing right sides together, and a layer of batting behind them.  Might be easier ?
Click the pic to see the invisible zig-zag and machine blanket stitch - you can also see the stitch in the ditch around both

Lesson Learned -- I did the blanket stitch AFTER the star was stitched -- feed dogs caught on the invisible thread and broke it... not good... be careful to not make this mistake!!

Each DGC gets their own "Star" and initials... two kids on each quadrant - - sew much fun! 
I stitched in the ditch on each applique and then stitched at least one row of echo.
Emily's flannel snoopy pillow case scraps -- and throw pillow fabric for the Caleb and Benjamin
Quilting on my DSM has been a Joy - well sorta...
Lesson Learned - don't layer 100% poly med loft with 1 layer of 100% Cotton Warm and Natural -- way too hard to quilt...but....  it will be the standard until I finish 3 more quadrants : )
I'm making 4 quadrants, quilting each (on my DSM) as I go and I will use Leah's great tutorial to piece them together!

Lesson Learned - Top Thread Breaks - (Using Signature 100 Cotton) - I put my spool in the freezer overnight and the next time I quilted I had LESS Breaks !!   YAY !
I'm nearly done with this quadrant -- lets see - only 20 days to finish 3 more and stitch them together...   It might be a two quadrant quilt for this Memorial Day.

I hope you enjoyed this "Lessons Learned" session - more to come !

Have a wonderful day -- hugs -- Karen

Linking up to Lee and Esther's WIP Wednesdays!!


  1. Hi Karen! I just had to stop by when I saw your link at Lee's WIP Wednesday. I'm a "50 something" Grandma on Cayuga Lake!

    Love you quilting and trapunto!


  2. What great ideas and thanks so much for the very helpful hints/tips. The freezer....had no idea!! Have done QAYG t-shirt quilts. Definitely the way to go for very large and/or heavy quilts. Look great when done and the quilting on a DSM goes so much better!! Wonderful post!!!

  3. What a lovely idea for the lake quilt, was fun to follow and some wonderful tips there you have shared. I hope the Grandies don't fight over who is going to use it first????? Thanks for sharing. Cheers Glenda

  4. This looks so effective, it's stunning!

  5. Lucky grandkids...they're all going to want one!

  6. What a lovely quilt. Thank you for the tips. Your grand kids are going to enjoy this beautiful quilt. GREAT JOB!!!!

  7. looks like you are learning loads! I love the colors. Your grand kids will treasure it:)

  8. What a neat quilt and look at all the new techniques you are using! The grandkids are really going to love this!

  9. Wow, this is beautiful!! Thanks for all the tips. Thread in the freezer -- brilliant!!! I am sure this quilt will be VERY well loved!

  10. Great ideas on this quilt, Karen. Thanks for the tips, too. I'm a DSMer, too. Now my question is what kind of invisible thread do you use?, so I can try it. Thanks so much for linking at Applique Thursday.

  11. Hello- coming from Happy Quilting link up! Lovely quilt - your grandchildren are very lucky and will love having their own 'piece' of the quilt. Gorgeous :o)