Saturday, February 23, 2013

A seam-ripping day/Liebster award

It has been a long, frustrating day, getting to know my seam-ripper on a personal level! I have finally had a free weekend to work on my own quilts and inspiration seems to have deserted me. I have been working on an Asian tea cup quilt that I found in a magazine. I am very happy with my fabric choices, but am struggling to come up with quilting ideas.

I decided on a swirly filler, a la Angela Walters, for my creamy tea cup blocks. I was very happy with how that turned out, so I moved onto the next color block.

Basically, the whole thing alternates between the above blocks. I had a nice Asian feather block planned for the koi blocks. If you can make out the tiny block in the last photo that is in the second row, second from the left, you can see what I had in mind. I thought, hey, gold metallic would show up nicely on this. Wrong! Not only did it not show up well, it also conflicted with the fabric pattern, and it sounded wrong. Don't know if that makes any sense to you guys, but I could almost hear the machine fighting to pull it through. I used regular cotton thread in the bobbin and there was nothing wrong with the tension, it just sounded different. Maybe I'm crazy, but I was a music major, so maybe that is my excuse:)

So, with the help of my trusty seam ripper/clipper, I spent a  couple of hours ripping out what took about 10 minutes to stitch. Grrrr....... Still wondering how that works! And it was so sad, because it looked lovely on the back:( I should have stuck with my instinct and stopped stitching when I thought maybe it didn't look quite right. That will teach me!

So now I'm stumped. I was aiming for amazing, intricate, tight quilting, and now I'm wondering how to pull it off on the busy fabric. And I decided to try out wool batting on this one, so it has to be stitched tightly or it puffs out like crazy! I'm starting to think I might just follow the lines on the fabric instead of trying to compete with them. Maybe I can change up the cream blocks or do something fancy on the teal.
And the tea cups?! Hmmmmm.............
Any suggestions?
And, by the way, if you have made it this far, you might as well know a little bit more about me:) Kelly Wood from remember your karma has nominated me for a Liebster Award. Thanks Kelly! So I guess this means I get to answer some questions. Here they are:
1. What is your favorite quilt block or pattern?
I'm not really a quilt block sort of person. I love making art quilts, and if a block speaks to me, then I go for it. Just don't quiz me on their names:)
2. What is your guilty pleasure?
I don't know if it is a guilty pleasure or not, but I have a horrible sweet tooth. I try to keep chocolate out of the house, but my husband keeps surprising me by hiding Reese's cups in my drawers (and that is dresser drawers, not under things;)
3. What inspires you?
I am inspired by longarm quilters like Angela Walters and Judi Marsden. Their work is amazing!
4. Tell me about your pets!
We are a house of dog lovers. We brought our lab/border collie mix over with us from Wales when we moved here 9 years ago. Murphy is a mutt of indeterminate breed. Very sweet. Lily is my baby. We got her for the girls, and she attached herself to me. And who wouldn't want a sweet little cuddly chihuahua in her lap?
5. What is your music of choice?
I like a variety of music. Depending on my mood, I could be listening to Classical, Pop, Celtic, Latin, who knows...
6. Favorite vacation spot
Wales, definitely!
7. What is the most influential book you have read?
Hm, I love to read. I think The Food Revolution, by John (?) Robbins was a big one for me. Really opened my eyes up to the food industry in this country and made me more aware of what I am putting into my body.
8. What quilts are on your "bucket list" to make?
I'd really like to get my art/photo quilt finished. I finally got it all fused together. Just need to quilt it:) I also finally broke down and bought Star Gazer, a Lunden Designs pattern. I try not to pay for what I can figure out on my own, but this one has been speaking to me.
9. What is your favorite quilt making technique?
Steam-a-seam 2! Woo hoo!
10. What is your favorite color combination?
I am a big fan of blue and white.
11. What quilting tool or gadget can you not live without? (other than your sewing machine!)
I would have to say my Anchor seam ripper. I bought this at Sewingly Yours a few years ago and I would really struggle without it. Not to say that I rip out seams a lot, but it really is a pair of scissors as well. Perfect for clipping those little threads on the underside of a quilt without worrying about cutting the quilt as well.
I think this is where I am supposed to nominate other blogs, but I am still new at this and my blog list is sadly lacking:) Thanks again Kelly!


  1. I feel your reverse quilting pain! Be there before. I have never had luck with metallic threads. I know some people that use them put them in the bobbin and quilt upside down.
    I like the metallic look of polyester embroidery thread. The "PolyX" at Sewingly Yours or the Isacord at Sew Original both quilt well for me. I use them in the top with a 50 wt cotton in the bobbin.
    And thanks fro playing with the Leibster Award. It is just a fun way of getting to know each other!
    PS: We are dog lovers, too!

  2. well, I just think you are brave to try metallic thread. so sorry you didn't like your results and had to spend time ripping out. bummer!
    enjoyed reading more about you. that is funny about your hubby hiding chocolate but not very good. LOL