Sunday, June 02, 2013

Spring at last

At long last, daffodils.

These poor flowers began the growth process back in January. At this first class we learned the basics of cutwork: how to prepare the applique fabric with a fusible web, the correct method to add stabilizer sheets to help keep the fabric from jumping around during the cutwork process, hooping all the layers of fabric and stabilizer, and finally, using the cutwork tool (a mini chisel that takes the place of the machine needle) to actually cut out the shape.

It was a lot of fun - the prep work isn't difficult once you know what to do, and the machine did all the actual cutting work. We sat around and talked while the machines ran. Even with the shortened work time due to the demonstrations, I managed to get the flowers themselves cut out.

We were going to learn how to stick the applique to the background and to set the machine to embroider around the edges at the next class, so I did the cutwork for the leaves at home a few days after the first class.

And then....

In February, we had a snowstorm. I live forty minutes from the shop in good weather; I called to say I wasn't going to make it. Class was ultimately cancelled.

In March, I was hacking and coughing. I couldn't expose the rest of the class to my crud; I stayed home.

In April, there was no water in the condo when I got home from work. Finding the cause and checking things out took some time and wore me out; I didn't make it to class.

In May, I made it to class...with an embroidery module that wasn't working.

In other words, as of yesterday not a single block was done for this quilt.

As you can see, the daffs are done! It took almost no time this afternoon to follow the on-screen prompts for placement and embroidery. It was so much fun, I went ahead and did the next block.

I'm still behind, but at least I'm making progress. There are a few traditionally pieced blocks in this quilt that are finished with large triangles around the sides in which there are additional flower appliques. The tulips for one of those blocks were also cut this afternoon - twelve of them - in a lighter red.

There were a few missteps, but all in all, it's fun to see these take shape. I'm not sure how far we are supposed to be for the next class (and wouldn't you know, we are not scheduled to have a class for June). Even though I'm doing one of the smaller of the projects for this pattern, there are still quite a few blocks and border blocks to make.

In the meantime, I'm working on a baby quilt that is about a third of the way quilted. There's a special feature on this machine that gives you even, regular stitches even when doing free motion quilting. That, too, has been a bit of a learning curve.

Still, I can't complain. Puttering in the sewing studio is the perfect way to relax.


Joy Foucault said...

The flowers are lovely!! You are so talented!!

Diane said...

I was nothing but the button pusher for these.

I do have a whole ton of floral embroidery patterns...if you want anything for the girls spiced up, I can do it. Alphabets too, so if you need stuff personalized for school for Abigail, we can figure something out.