quilted applique

For starters, furnishing fabric samples are probably not the best choice for a quilt top. Not being able to easily remove the paper border that was stuck to each sample didn’t help and having to reduce them in size as a result was another factor that should have rung warning bells loudly in my brain. On the other hand, I really liked the fabric texture and the colours available, had no other use for the samples and nothing better to do this week.

I appliqued the pieces to the blue top fabric and used repositionable mounting spray to baste all the layers together since I don’t possess quilting safety pins, have no intention of buying them and was too lazy to baste by hand. Once the applique was done, I took photographs and used Photoshop Elements to try out various free-motion quilting designs. The one I finally chose looked fine in the 12 x 12″ test quilt I made but the actual quilt was surprisingly heavy and difficult to maneuver when free-motion stitching and this resulted in inconsistent stitch length. I constructed a temporary working area to hold the quilt when ripping out the large area that I’d just sewn and subsequently moved my sewing machine there to better support the quilt when stitching the simple diagonal lines which were my final choice for securing the layers together.

This quilt is only approximately 34 x 44 inches so not large but is an ideal lap quilt size and I’m glad I made it – something else ticked off my list of ‘things I haven’t sewn yet’ list and although JP liked it and admired the work that went into to it, when I suggested to him that I could hang it on a wall, he suggested an outside one. I’m sure he was just joking. If I make any more quilts in future I think I’ll stick to small ones. I admire those quilters who sew bed-sized quilts on a domestic sewing machine but I imagine that it is actually more of a struggle than they care to admit!

blue quilt

quilt table





decisions, decisions

Finally, I made a decision about what to stitch on the backing of the felt appliqu├ęd teapot embroidery. I wanted something that was free-motion embroidered and tried some stitchy ideas this morning using cotton backed with fusible batting but nothing was working out satisfactorily so I resorted to my usual go-to for machine embroidery – heavy duty interfacing. I cut a piece approximately 60 x 70 cm and spray-basted the black polycotton fabric to it so that they would remain together without using pins or clips. I’ve seen quilters on YouTube videos use a can of spray basting but I only had Elmer’s repositionable mounting spray (which does not include fabric in the list of recommended uses) at my disposal. It did the trick and kept both layers together while I scrunched and folded and rolled the interfacing and fabric in order to manoeuver it under the needle as I stitched. I take no responsibility for anyone who uses this same spray on fabric and finds that it ruins the fabric! I’ve never free-motion embroidered such a large size of heavy-duty interfacing before and it’s not brilliant but I’m happy with it considering how unwieldy the interfacing was.

teapot backing


Rejected samples stitched on 100% cotton (blue) and a linen blend (black).