Posts Tagged quilt design

Organic Quilting For All- The Quilt Top

Perhaps the name should be eco-concious, or sustainable quilting, instead of organic.  Because you don’t need to be using organic fabrics to improve your quilters carbon footprint.  I have been noticing that there is a lot of vauge, unhelpful and plain wrong info available about quilting organically.  So heres to setting the record straight, and helping all quilters get a little greener.

A quilt is basically three layers of material held together with stitching.  Each layer can be approached with an idea of how to make it greener.

The Quilt Top

The good news is that you don’t have to give up designer quilting fabrics.There are some wonderful designers working exclusively with organic fabrics

http://www.harmonyart.com/index.html 

http://www.daisyjanie.com/ 

http://cloud9fabrics.com/

Some larger companies are also adding organic lines

http://www.robertkaufman.com/green/

But adding organic cottons is not the only thing you can do to be more earth friendly.   What about that stash?  Most quilters over purchase fabrics for specific projects, and so a stash is born.  Making every fourth or fifth quilt a stash quilt is a great way to save money and make your quilting a bit greener.

Another thing to consider is trying new fibers.  I am currently loving working with hemp and hemp blends.  Hemp is not generally an organic certified fiber, but is considered sustainable because coventional production is already very low in chemicals.   Hemp Silk is a wonderful luxury fiber to try out.  Make sure you preshrink  if you are mixing fibers in a quilt.

http://www.hemptraders.com/

Did I miss a good resource?  Let me know in a comment and I will add it to the list.

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Tulip Field Quilt

As I am slogging away at reorganising my space (yes still at that), I have been unearthing a lot of unfinished quilts.  I tend to jump around between projects mostly when I get tired of piecing, bored, hit a problem, get a new idea, well pretty much for any reason at all. 

However I didn’t realise I had such a major problem.  I discovered 10 different projects that I have been working on in the last month!  Needless to say this was a bit disheartening, so I stopped and finished one.

  It took me a grand total of 2 hours to finish this quilt, photograph it and list it for sale .

I started this quilt after my dad sent me a link to pictures of Dutch tulip fields, the amazing surreal stripes of colour across the landscape begged to put into a quilt, I immediately ran out to my dye station and dyed the fabrics.  As soon as they were ready to use I dived right in.  I quit when the quilting wasn’t going right.  If you look closely you can see it has a quilted motif of tulips.  When I sat down to finish it up I loosened up the shape of the buds, and it just clicked.

So now I only have 9 current works in progress, but I know most of them are only needing a few hours work, and that makes it seem so much more doable.

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Little Boxes Block Tutorial

I Saw this great cubby unit on Papernstitch yesterday and the arrangement of squares and rectangles were so intriguing that I had to make a quilt block out of it.

I started out by choosing 4 fabrics, and cutting some 2 1/2″ strips, and  4 1/2″ squares.

This is the layout I came up with.

It looked pretty bland, so after taking another look at my inspiration I decided to add a white strip between each piece.  Of course this raised a technical issue.  Because of the varied sizes of the blocks I need to cut down the pieces to fit the sashing in.  Also to piece the blocks easily I couldn’t have the long strip in the top center.  But with a little tweaking I figured it all out.

So, here is your cut list.

Cut two or three pieces from each fabric

3x 4 1/4″x4 1/4″

2x 2 1/4″x2 1/4″

2x 2 1/4″x4 1/4″

1x 2 1/4″x6 1/4″

1x 2 1/4″x7 1/4″ (this is the strip for the top middle)  cut this strip down into three pieces, a 4 1/4, a 3/4 and a 2 1/4, cut them in  that order so they go together well when they are joined back together.  Set aside the 3/4 piece for later, and insert the other two pieces into the layout.

2x strips 3/4″ wide of white 

Lay out your block.  It will not line up at this point, so don’t be concerned.

Start by piecing the most basic units. 

Make sure you press the seams away from the white sashing, otherwise it will get really bulky.

Assemble the units into larger units until you have two halves.  Now comes the tricky bit.  I was not willing to give up the look of the large strip at the top, so I faked it.  Get the 3/4″ piece that was set aside earlier, and sew it to one end of the white sashing.  Press the seam toward the white.

Carefully pin the strip in place so the seams line up, and sew, do the same for the other side.

Done!  If you want you can add an additional piece of white sashing around the outside. 

This is a somewhat fiddly block, but well within the reach of anyone who has been quilt for a while.  Just take your time and don’t be afraid to take out stitches and do it again to get it right.  Please let me know if you have any problems following this, and send links of your versions.

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