About Me

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Great Falls, Montana, United States
I love creating art. I love the Creator! And through that love, I find a little slice of heaven on earth and I give Him all the glory! It's a great adventure and I'm excited to see what's around the bend! Come join me, won't you?
Showing posts with label Bernina Patchwork #37 foot. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bernina Patchwork #37 foot. Show all posts

Friday, January 25, 2013

From My Studio ~ City Lights ~

Good Friday Morning everyone!

Today I want to show a new piece I designed last weekend.  I'm calling it "City Lights." The base fabric is, once again, my stash of aqua "grunge" fabric from Basic Grey for Moda.  It came together almost by accident, as I was cleaning up in the studio. As I was folding up fabrics, I began to think about how some of them really were quite intriguing against this aqua color...

I dropped what I was doing {go figure}, and didn't even take time to fuse these scraps to fusible.  I just decided to go for it, and audition those scraps, cutting them into narrow strips, and it started to look like a cityscape to me.  It kind of started with the grey and white print, which reminded me of a skyscraper... and then I saw the lime green modular batik print, and it looked like windows... and then other, more geographical prints, as well as the flowered ones.  When the flowered ones are cut up, they resemble foilage, trees, and greenery, against a backdrop of blue sky, or buildings, or well... your imagination!  And they are even more interesting in little slices...
I pinned each strip, and then began to stitch them down with the white thread.  While I was doing that, I knew it 'needed more' and I thought how cool it would be to add a bit of silver Razzle, you know, like the sunlight streaming down on the shiny skyscraper buildings and reflecting?  And of course, why stop at just one?  I added lime green, and aqua Razzle Dazzle or YLI Candlelight threads to further add sparkle and shine.
The picture above is the best rendering of true color of the piece.  Good light in the winter can be elusive in our house.  The picture below shows it hung on our living room wall, which faces the south, but it was a cloudy day outside, so there was not much light.  I'm sad that the sparkles and colors don't both really show off, but hopefully, you get the idea.
It was designed it to be hung horizontally, and I wanted the left side edge to have the feeling of kind of 'falling away' into the distance as you leave the city {at least that is what I was going for}. I used two different fabrics for the binding, too, and deliberately placed the blue one on the curvy left edge.
And I also hung it vertically, to see how looked.  I prefer it horizontally I think.  The next day the sun came into the house, but it kind of washes it out, but you can see how it will really sparkle and shine for real!
My Bernina 830 has a walking foot built into it; it's called the 'dual feed' and it just flips down from the back of the machine, and attaches to any dual feed foot.  {these are marked as "D" feet in case you ever want to know}. I used my patchwork foot #37D for all the straight rows in white thread.
Rows upon rows of straight stitching, unevenly spaced apart, and parallel to each other.  Right up my alley. haha.  And the fabrics are fraying a little bit too... which also appeals to me.  If I do another one, though I may take some time and fuse, as it's less hassle than pins.
See that little slice of text print above?  That's leftover from my stencil printing.  {cool!} And yes... I'm still lovin' that lime green and turquoise together.  I deliberately left the green top thread on my machine as I couched the aqua thread down, using the Bernina #39 foot.  I just really dig that contrast.

I hope you're looking forward to a nice weekend.  Terri's Blog Hop has sure been fun, huh!  I can't wait to see what Vicki has to show us today!  There's been such fabulous ideas for using them, you're bound to find something that will surely appeal!  

Thanks for stopping by; it's been a great week!
JOINING my sweet blogger friend Jennifer at Studio JRU for her Friday "In the Studio!"
Soli Deo Gloria! 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Binding Finish & Sewline Chalk Pen

Hi everyone!  Hope you've had a great week so far!

Thought I would share how I finish up my bindings.  This method is nothing 'new' - that's for sure.  And I know many people like to do it a bit different.  But this is how I do it, and I learned from my Libby Lehman DVD "A Day of ThreadPlay" which is a wonderful DVD!  I hope some of you may have had the chance to be in her class in Great Falls this past week!

So I've squared up the edges of my quilt, using the inside border seam as a reference for the straight edge.  The binding has been sewn on, and the gap below reflects the space that I've allowed to finish the binding seam, and so it will meet up with the quilt evenly.
I fold the binding so the folds meet, and press.  This puts a reference fold line, pressed into the binding fabric, so I can see where to sew the line to joint those two ends of binding fabric.

Sometimes, on darker fabrics, like this green batik, I also like to add a bit of a line (on the pressed fold) using my "Sewline" chalk pencils, so I can see where I'm sewing better.  I love this chalk pen!  I use it to mark all my curves for free motion feathers, too.  No sharpening, and it even comes with an eraser.  (Sorry, my thumb is covering the eraser!)  

The white pin (below - wish I had used a brighter colore dpin!) is where I pinned the excess quilt fabric, so it makes it easier to sew the binding ends together...
I open up the folded edges of the binding fabric, pin it, and place them rights side together, to prepare to sew my 1/2" seam...

I like to use my #37 patchwork foot. Notice I chalked the edge just so I can see for sure where my seam should be.  Be sure to look at the edge of your slide-on table... those markings are mighty handy guides! (And I forgot to take a picture of that -- oops!)

Here's the finished seam, the edges of the binding are back together, pressed, and ready to perfectly fit on the space left to finish up sewing onto the rest of the quilt, nice and flat.

I like to press the binding away from the front of the quilt, just to make it nice and neater in sewing down the backside of the binding to the back of the quilt.

I know alot of folks out there who probably join the binding edges using a 45 degree angled seam.  That's great, too.  This is a technique I picked up from a video by Libby Lehman.  "A Day of Threadplay."  And I don't think it leaves the seam with excess bulk... but perhaps I'm not so picky about it either!  Anyway, I enjoy this finish, and it is easy to do, and quick!

Thanks for stopping by!  I appreciate that you do.  Have a GREAT DAY, everyone.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

In A Quick Bind

Bindings.  Uhm... not my favorite thing to make, or finish, until lately.  Two reasons.  First, my Bernina 830 machine.  Second, a new technique I learned that finishes the binding, and adds a bit of BLING.  Two for one babycakes! And I love that!  
Like many of you, I sew my binding strips for the 45 degree angle, so the bulk and/or seam is less noticeable, hopefully.  Normally, it's best to chalk that seam line, and measure, so it was straight.  
 As my friend Lisa would say, I have a 'fancy-schmancy' machine in my Bernina 830. True. One of the schmancy parts is built into the throatplate.  There is an angled line that has been cut into that metal, showing the 45 degree angle line to place my binding strips on when sewing for that same angle.  In the pic below, you can see the engraved line, just above the blue strip of fabric, where my wooden pointer is showing. 
I also have a feature called 'dual feed' on my new machine.  My dual feed #37 patchwork foot is also attached.  This is really cool in the way it helps feed the thicker pieces of fabric through my machine.  I no longer need to attach a walking foot, and I love that. This little dual-feed piece swings down and clips onto the back of the foot, and when not needed, it just flips back up to the backside of the machine. 
I moved the fabric strip so you could see the line, (two pics above) but I would align my fabric with that line when I go to sew the strips together.  Trim, fold strips in half, press. Next, on to the attachment of the folded binding to the quilt top.
 Stop! Don't clip those threads just yet!  When you reach the end of stitching into the angle into the corner when attaching the binding strip, don't cut your threads.  Instead, hold onto them.  As the song says "You got to know when to hold em...!"
And then 'hold em' -- just like in poker - lol! Hold them in such a way so you can grasp the threads.  This will help 'jumpstart' your beginning stitches as you continue sewing on the binding. And would say that is a neat tip no matter what machine you own!
 I'm holdin' em tight, ready to begin stitching the next section of binding.  I then also make sure the edge of my binding/quilt is on the exact 1/4" placement, using the engraved 1/4" line on my throatplate.  If you'd like to see more information about using your patchwork foot, click here.
 This technique really helps you to avoid a nasty knot of threads to begin, and maybe a bit of a 'snafu' as there is alot of bulk in the corner... actually 7 layers worth!
 And to finish.  I pressed my binding away from the seams on the front, then turned it to the back, and fused it down with Steam-A-Seam 1/4" fusible tape.  Then on to the fun part!  Instead of using one my most favorite foots, the #39, (click here for a bit of a tutorial on the #39 clear embroidery foot) with the hole in the front part of the foot... I wanted to show how easy it is to couch on a thick thread, such as Razzle Dazzle, shown above, with the #20 open toe foot.  I've set my machine to these settings:
(FYI my bobbin indicator is flashing that I have 18% of thread left in my bobbin--another feature of the Bernina 830). So now choose a zig zag stitch, 1.5 in width, and  a 3.5 in length.  Set the needle position to the FAR right orientation.  Why is that helpful?  Well, it means you can use the foot as a guide, keeping the inside edge of the right-side toe of the foot, aligned with the inside edge of the binding.  (see below pic) Make sense?  That way, the right swing of the needle will pierce the seam (stitch in the ditch), and the left swing of the needle will cover the cord.  All the time... this is sewing a zig zag on the back of the binding, catching the edge, and attaching your binding, all in ONE FELL SWOOP!  Woohoo!
 On the corner, pivot with needle down, and I stop with the needle in the left side position, so that when I turn the corner, the next stitch taken will be to the right, and it will be a nice, neat, 'squared' corner, instead of a rounded one, where the couched thread is concerned.
And this is a close-up of the thread... I happened to have a black cotton (Masterpiece) as my top thread, and since it blended so well, it 'disappeared' onto this dark-colored purple-blue thread that is couched into the seam on the binding.  I really like it, and it's just another way to make it simple, and easy on the ... hands! And time, too!
I used Masterpiece 50 weight in a green color in the bobbin and a black Masterpiece in the top, when I used this couching technique.

Do you think this is a technique that would suit your binding and quilting styles? 

It sure does mine!  I hope it was helpful. And you don't need a 'fancy-schmancy' machine to do it!  

Come back tomorrow for the "Bittersweet Fall Give-A-way!"

Monday, May 9, 2011

JUST THE FACTS - Bernina Patchwork Foot #37

Will the REAL quarter-inch seam reveal itself?!  
The Patchwork Foot #37 and the stitchplate
Ok! So much for being a 'game show host! Now on to the facts!

The most common reason this foot is purchased is to enable accurate, 1/4" seams in piecing for quilts. Before I go into further details about this fabulous tool, first an important message about the stitch plate...

I hope you can see the lines engraved into the stitch plate in the pictures above.  The first engraved line ... just barely to the right of the white material (where my awl is pointed)- that is the TRUE 1/4" measurement mark!  The next mark to the right is the 3/8" mark, then the 1/2" and the 5/8." 
Hint: THE very BEST way to get a precise 1/4" seam is to use the.... STITCH PLATE. Hands down. No bones about it. True story! 

Yes, the patchwork foot itself is 1/4" wide.  BUT... it's NOT MEANT to be used as the  'perfect' 1/4" seam maker... it's really just a guide!  Emphasis on the word "guide" here.   If you want accurate 1/4" seams, then you should be using the 1/4" mark on the stitch plate as you are piecing seams using this foot. That's how you get a consistent... 1/4" seam!  And I think most of us realize that consistency is key when you are piecing.  Most especially if you are doing a Mariner's Compass or Lone Star type block.
Just take a look at those three handy-dandy  notches on the edge of the foot! They are on both sides of the foot, too. I love those!  These notches are all 1/4" apart.  Looking at your needle once this foot is attached,  you will be able to see that the back notch is 1/4" behind your needle, and the the center notch is lined up with your needle position, (where it pierces the fabric) and the third notch is 1/4" in front of your needle position! Handy.
 Using those notches is one way I use this foot for turning and mitering my corners on bindings.  I stop sewing when the first notch hits the edge of the fabric and I know it's time to make my 45 degree angled stitch into the corner.  Works like a charm! Hint: Don't forget to use your Free Hand System to lift the foot for EASE and manuervability!
The 1/4" seam, stitched into the corner on a piece of fabric to emulate the 45 degree angle when binding a quilt.
There is also the patchwork foot #57 with a guide, pictured below. Many people like this foot to help keep their fabric even and riding against the edge of that guide... which is fine, but remember that if you make your seams pushing your fabric toward that metal guide, it's almost a certainty that you will not have accurate 1/4" seams. (See the stiletto pointing to the 1/4" mark on the stitch plate, as compared to the metal guide?)  

Regardless of the type of patchwork foot you use, what you need to know is the foot itself is not the most accurate guide.  The engraved measurement lines on the stitch plate ARE.

Here's a good tip I heard in a class from one of the Bernina Educators:  don't watch the foot as you're guiding the fabric... keep your eye focused on the the engraved line with the 1/4" mark on the stitch plate as you piece, and you will find your seams and piecing come together accurately and consistently!

Every once in a while I hear students commenting in class that the patchwork foot is just a 'scant' 1/4"... and therefore not a 'true' quarter-inch seam.  Now if you hear it... you'll KNOW THE DIFFERENCE!  Yay!

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