Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Madness in my methods

Sue asked how I am constructing these skinny landscapes. The ocean one from the book "Skinny Quilts & Table Runners" is sewn right to the batting. You cut all the strips first, get them organized the way you want, and press the edges... from the horizon down about halfway, you press the top of the strips under and stitch them close to the edge. About halfway down, you start working from the sand and press the bottom edge under and topstitch. One strip in the middle is pressed on both edges. It goes together very quickly once the decisions are made.

The fence is made with edges turned under and stitched down, and the wire and grass is just drawn on with thread. It needs more quilting lines in the sky, water and clouds, and some shells added, maybe some birds too.

I've also decided the water layers on the horizon are too dark so am putting tulle over it. I'm amazed at that... it modifies the color but is almost invisible. It is not on in this picture... next time you can see the difference.

I started the mountain one first, but after reading the directions for the ocean quilt. I don't like raw-edge applique or satin stitch. So I made a freezer paper pattern and cut each section from it, allowing 1/4" all around. Then I used my little iron (or my big one) and pressed under a seam allowance where it was needed. I left it unpressed wherever something else would overlap. Then I used matching thread and sewed close to the folded edge, again sewing the pieces right on to the batting. I started with the sky and the farthest away objects.

I know, this all sounds like a lot of work, but it gives me the look I want. I use a Bernina 1630 which makes thread-swapping very quick, and had my Babylock Quilter's Choice Professional threaded up too and in free-motion mode. Then whatever one had the best thread color already in it was the machine I used. If a change was needed, I used the Bernina.

I did stick the large tree in the mountain quilt on raw edge because the edges of a fir tree look better that way. I've been doing some thread "drawing" and will post a closeup when my mountains start looking like rocks.


SueR said...

Thanks, Elsie, you sure answered all my questions. I think all landscapes that have any detail to them are a lot of work, and you need to, to get that detail. I *so* like these skinny quilts! It'll be fun to see the thread drawing when you get that far.

Susan J Barker said...

came by for a visit, via quilting bloggers and a lazy sunday afternoon...
Very much like your skinny quilts and the method of construction - you got me thinking on them, so will go looking for the book you have suggested.. Thanks!

Leah said...

oooh wowow love the skinny landscape!! what a cool idea. i love this beach one with the little fence and everything. nice work!!