Monday, 17 March 2014

Learning Curves

When I posted a piece of black free motion quilting on white fabric, I got a lot of interest (thank you very much!). When I announced that I was going to cut it up, one or two visitors were shocked, but mostly, people were very curious to see what I would do with it. Well, me too, because I really wasn't sure what I was doing. So, here is my first trial.

Learning curves - trial 1

 I started with an old practice piece on which I had tried out some new designs. I edged each piece with a zig-zag stitch before attaching them to the quilted background with a button whole stitch. I think using black thread for this was a mistake.

So, on to the next piece. First the background - a piece of hand-dyed black fabric quilted with an all over pebble stitch.


I took this out in the garden on a sunny day. It is a bit darker than this in reality. I tried an experiment with this. I quilted the circles in undulating rows, which makes it look a bit like a crocodile skin I think. When quilting from top to bottom, this then raised the question of either stopping and starting again at the top (tedious) or turning the piece around so that the bottom becomes the top (not always possible if there is too much bulk) or quilting backwards, from bottom to top. Do you ever do this? It wasn't strictly necessary with the size of this piece, but I thought it would be good practice. Doing pebbles is good practice anyway. Touching the adjacent circle without going into it and travelling around the pebble to the start of the next requires quite a bit of precision. 

Fracture 1
So now here is the first piece that I made from the quilting that I have posted previously. And yes, it doesn't use any of the designs that I made from black and white paper. I haven't abandoned them, but I didn't have enough black dyed fabric for them - and I have run out of material and need to order more  - all of which was going to take time, so in the meantime... here is Fracture 1. Rather than zig-zag the edges here, I  bonderwebed the pieces to stop the cut stitching from unravelling. I then blanket stitched it using white thread.


Close up, this wasn't as neat as I had hoped. What do you think? Would you find this acceptable and any ideas what else I could do?

Here are a couple more shots taken from an angle - just because I think they are fun!




Thanks for dropping by...

Hilary Florence
Please find below a list of linky parties. I may not link with all of the every week, but with some of them most weeks. Please go and have a look at some of the other wonderful quilts and quilters there.
Anything goes Mondays @ http://marelize-ries.blogspot.co.uk/
Linky Tuesday at Free motion by  the river­­­­ @ http://www.conniekresin.com/
Fabric Tuesday @http://quiltstory.blogspot.co.uk/    
Sew cute Tuesday @ http://www.blossomheartquilts.com/ 
Show and tell Tuesday @ http://ihavetosay.typepad.com/randi/
WIP Wednesday at freshly pieced   @   http://www.freshlypieced.com/
WOW = WIPs on Wednesdays  @ http://www.estheraliu.blogspot.co.uk/  
WIP Wednesday at TN + TN  @ http://needleandthreadnetwork.blogspot.ca
We did it Wednesday @ http://www.sewmuchado.com/
I Quilt Thursdays @ http://prettybobbins.com/
Really Random Thursdays @ http://www.liveacolorfullife.net/
Needle and Thread Thursday @ http://myquiltinfatuation.blogspot.co.uk/
Off the wall Fridays @ http://ninamariesayre.blogspot.co.uk/

36 comments:

  1. I love your curve works, especially The Fracture is beautiful!

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  2. Awesome and creative artwork Hilary -- thanks so much for sharing your process with us.

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  3. looks great. If you want a neater look, how about appliqueing bias strips over the raw edges?

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  4. I think they both look great! My thought was to couch some cording - black or white, against the cut edges of your applique pieces before attaching them to the background. I can't wait to see more of these - I'm really going to have to go play, myself, too!

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  5. Very impressive creativity. Love what you've done.

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  6. "Fractures I" is very eye-catching. I wonder if using a tight zigzag (satin stitch) would give the look you're after? It is a lovely piece, regardless.

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  7. this is so intriguing, Fracture 2 stole my heart and piqued my interest. thanks for sharing.

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  8. Love them both but the second one really is wonderful. Very creative! Never would I have thought to do anything even remotely like this and yet it so purely stunning.

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  9. I agree, this is very intriguing. I love reading your posts every week. You are so inventive and it's a pleasure to discover your latest experiment.
    As for what I would have done, I think I would have drawn a line with a pencil (where I want to cut the quilted fabric) and then make a straight stitch along the line with my sewing machine to stop the unraveling when I would cut it. Then I would sew it by hand as for an appliqué, turning the border in as as sew. I think the result would be the neatest as you can tuck in the loose threads as you go. OR I would sew it with the sewing machine, at a very slow pace, turning the border in just before it arrives under the foot. A blanket stitch would be beautiful. But I guess this could be done only if a thin batting fabric was used. But I never tried that, I'm just guessing!

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  10. Ok, you win, you were right to cut it up. I think I prefer the white thread for stitching your applique. I might feel different if I saw them, in person. I also feel that the edges of Fracture 1, are fine. They provide the kind of texture that you can only get, with fibre. They are both beautiful pieces and again, you've taught me something new. Thanks!!

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  11. I would be over the moon if I had quilted something that looks this awesome!! Love Fractured 1!!

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  12. Both are very cool pieces, but the second is my favourite. I quite like the texture at the edges.

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  13. Oh I love these!! What a wonderful way to get to turn a practice piece into something beautiful!

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  14. Fabulous pieces! Love your bravery in cutting into the quilted pieces - and I think that the white edging looks better than the black, but I'd be thrilled if either of them were my work!
    I too would wonder about couching something along the edge if you wanted a definite 'stop' to the piece, but I don't necessarily think that they need that.
    Thanks for sharing!

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  15. Love the idea of cutting into it like you did and two very different looks. The first one reminds me of old pottery for some reason and the second has great impact. Lovely results!

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  16. I love your quilt. What an inspiration.

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  17. Whoa, that is gorgeous! Your quilting is amazing, Hillary!

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  18. Oooooh! I really like this technique. Your designs are awesome!

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  19. That is an awesome project, so unusual!! It's stunning!!

    -Soma

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  20. Wow! I'll join the chorus: I love Fracture 1--the cut curve, the falling placement. My eye just keeps going back and forth across the severed rows. And the pebbles background quilting is perfect. No clue for technique, but I'd keep the fracture line with exposed threads and finish only the other three edges.

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  21. These are interesting and I love what you have done here. I think raw edge definitely has a place, especially in pieces like this. If I was making it, I might probably bind the edges and stitch it down afterwards, however this might be too dimensional or bulky and would change the look and feel... Personally,I don't think it's too messy, I think the exposed threads add something.

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  22. Love these! I agree, there's something very primitive about #1 and very compelling about that curve in #2. You might consider some experiments on practice scraps to find the edge treatment you like best: satin stitch, couching, or perhaps Fray Check applied generously to both front & back before cutting, then finished with white buttonhole stitch as you have in #2.

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  23. Fantastic, makes me think of ancient pottery. Don't worry about the cut edges, it is characteristic of your medium.

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  24. This is brilliant! The fracture, the quilting...I think you could try not using zig zag or blanket stitch. Just bondaweb and sewing straight round the edge with white thread. You won't wash it as it's a fantastic art quilt anyway.

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  25. Very cool! I am so impressed with the fabric you "made" with your quilting. The fracture is dramatic and I have no problem whatsoever with the raw edge, I think it adds to the character of the piece.

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  26. Really cool! And very dramatic!

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  27. When I first read that the black blanket stitch was a mistake, I was surprised. But, I do like the white thread more. Closer stitching would help with the loose threads….turning under as you stitch slowly would help. Have you tried MistyFuse? That seems to really help though sometimes I still wind up with some errant threads.

    Great work! I really love the design.

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  28. I really enjoyed this - reading your post and looking! I also wouldn't have guessed you quilted the black stitching first, then cut - very cool! I love the finished look. :)

    valeriesmithartstudio.blogspot.com

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  29. Lovely work. The Fractured 1 is to die for! I think you could go with a frayed look on the edges instead of a tight zigzag--I mean that's what the fabric wants to do anyway! Free the Fabric!
    best, nadia

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  30. Incredible. I love the contrast in both pieced free motion pieces, and your FMQ is so inspiring and outstanding!

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  31. I absolutely love your fractured1, looks amazing! What a great idea to quilt black on white and then use it for applique! Neat!

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  32. Absolutely beautiful!! I love watching your quilting adventure :) thanks for linking up xx

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