I am now up to date with my Dear Jane Blocks. This month I was working with my Singer 301 Sewing Machine which just got cleaned and had some adjustments made. It is such a nice machine. It has a great stitch and is amazingly light. Perfect for taking to class.
I also wanted to comment on this month’s triangle block. Instead of appliqueing the curved piece on the bottom I decided to just sew it on with the machine because it is not much of a curve. And I cheated with the little melon. Yes, I did. It is fused in place with steam a seam and machine stitched around the edges. I think this will be just fine. After all, this is a MODERN Dear Jane quilt, so I am using as many modern techniques as I can!
Good Grief. It’s nearly the end of August and I still haven’t shared my Dear Jane Blocks.
I enjoyed putting these blocks together … not too much applique this month. Just the handle of the basket, which I did by machine. Not sure if that was a good idea or not, but it looks okay. I used steam a seam and ironed the handle in place and then machine sewed along the edges.
Here are my latest Jane blocks. Three of the five blocks are purple this month as indicated in my plan for the quilt .. a rainbow scheme starting with green in the middle, followed by yellow, etc. I still love working with the Kaffe Fassett and Philip Jacobs fabrics. You can use the large scale fabrics and pick sections to work with. The blocks seemed fussy to me this month, but maybe it was me! The reverse applique is the most trying. Hard to get the corners sewn without the raw edges poking out. I think I need most improvement in that area and will not doubt get the opportunity to do so in the next few years of my Jane Journey!
I have finished my Dear Jane blocks for Tuesday night’s meeting. I am enjoying this quite a bit …. so far! I love the fabric I am working with and the fact that each block is so different. This month I had two rotary cut and pieced blocks, two paper pieced blocks and one applique block. The paper pieced blocks are the fussiest, but the triangle block went together pretty quickly. Take a look at the May blocks. 10 done 215 to go!
Main Streets and Back Roads – A twelve month Block of the Month designed by Antoinette which, if the previous months’ block is finished, is free each month. This is the first month, so I am all set for my free block 2.
Aunt Lucy – A 16 month block of the month quilt in reproduction fabrics with 5 months completed!
In the Meadow was the 2012 block of the month. I started the background a a few of the blocks, but never finished because I was too focused on the Bird Quilt, but I am really going to try to find some time for this now!
Chicken and Stars is a 9 month BOM. I already have two months and I need to get started on this one before it ends up like the In the Meadow quilt!
Seven Sisters – This is the same pattern as the Star Quilt, but I am going to do this as a Seven Sisters quilt, with the 7 stars in the middle in blue and the others in purple.
Christmas Quilt – Peggy Anne has asked me to get a Christmas Quilt ready by June for her store. I have a pattern ready for this and will be getting the top done this month!!!
And … there is a an entire basket of quilt kits …. someday!!!!
Despite all of the projects I am working on, I could not resist signing up for the Dear Jane quilt group at Quilter’s Common. I started a Dear Jane quilt a few years ago using reproduction fabrics but I only got four blocks done before I gave up on the idea.
This time around I am feeling more confidant with a few more years of piecing experience and a sewing machine (Bernina 830) that makes it a lot easier to be precise … which is absolutely necessary with these small 4 1/2″ blocks . I have decided to go with modern fabrics this time and I am using a pale gray fabric for the background.
I have a collection of Kaffe Fassett fabrics and also just purchased three sets of 6 1/2″ squares of Kaffe and Philip Jacobs fabrics. I think the 6 1/2″ squares will be perfect for the Dear Jane blocks … 5″ squares would be too small for the blocks that require 2 or more 2 3/4″ square pieces from the same fabric.
I am already ahead of my first attempt attempt at Dear Jane. I have finished four squares and a triangle. I make no promises about keeping up with the pace and I don’t plan to make this a Dear Jane Blog … but, I will post updates as I go along!
The article provides all the instructions for programming your embroidery machine to sew around each little applique piece when using raw edge applique for a project. The article features my Gold Finch applique pattern which is in my Bird Applique Quilt, along with my Blue Jay.
I also made a pillow with my Mr. and Mrs. Cardinal pattern.
Please visit my Craftsy Shop if you would like to buy these patterns … and finish the applique any way you want! My method, your method … but do try applique … it is like paint by numbers combined with a jig saw puzzle and does anyone else remember colorforms???
But wait, please read on! … I must give this fabulous applique designer credit …. the majority of the patterns in the Bird Applique Quilt were designed by Peggy Anne Klinker. These were made available for her 2011 Block of the Month quilt. You can still get some kits for a few of the birds in that quilt, as well as some from her 2012 BOM quilt. And now Peggy Anne has a new BOM featuring Hens and Chicks … very cute, so do check it out. Sign up!
For a closer look at the applique embroidering click on these thumbnails of the Gold Finch and Blue Jay:
I finished my little house quilt last Friday, the 19th of April. I spent the day listening to the news and waiting for Suspect 2 in the Boston Marathon Bombings to be found and arrested. While listening I worked on this quilt. This terrible event hit close to home, as I work in Boston 3 days a week.
But on that Friday I was safe at home working on this fabric picture of my house and hoping that the law enforcement officers would all be safe while doing their jobs. Thankfully no one else was injured or killed and now we can move on …. while remaining vigilant!
This little quilt is 18″ x 18″. The story behind it is here … and to see a full size version of the finished quilt click on the thumbnail photo.
I have been wanting to do a little art quilt of my house for awhile now. I was thinking in terms of pieces cut and sewn together, but when Quilters Common was offering a class by Sue Colozzi featuring landscaping with raw edge applique I decided to give that a try. The class project was a house … a standard center entrance colonial. My house is a rather unique L shaped cape with a garage underneath. Very 50’s!
Not to be deterred I decided to go ahead, with encouragement from Sue, and used a picture of my house for the project. But, I needed to enlarge the picture and rearrange things a bit. I did not want the tree in front of the house! I started with an acrylic painting that I had done, enlarged that and then referred to a photo taken in the summer. I had to add the squirrel, but Bob wanted me to put a car in the driveway …. of course he did! Maybe next time.
I am happy with the result, which I think is nicer than the painting. I work better with fabric!
Of course, I still need to take the time to finish this quilt. The edges of each piece need to be sewn down, borders added and the whole thing needs to be quilted. My plan is to use my embroidering method, which will mean taking the time to scan the quilt and “program” the stitches and then let my embroidery machine finish it for me!
If you decide to try this here is the method I used for fusing the shapes to the background. I first drew the house, then I scanned the drawing and printed a mirror image of it. I then took a sheet of Steam a Seam 2, which is a doubled sided fusible web, and traced the shapes from the mirror image, grouping shapes by color. Then I cut out each group of pieces and fused it to the back of the appropriate fabric. Then I cut out the individual pieces and used the original drawing for a guide to place the pieces on the background fabric.
To finish the edges of the applique I used my embroidery software to digitize the stitches to embroider around the edges of each piece. Look for an article in Issue 17 of Bernina’s Through the Needle on line magazine to find out how to do this.
Patterns for the blue jay and gold finch appliques are for sale in my Pattern Store. I have also finished the pattern for the cardinals in the pillow. All of the other applique designs were designed by my friend Peggy Anne, and some are for sale at Peggy Anne’s Shop.