Monday, March 25, 2013

Juxtapostion-phase II- assembly & Book Review

The reason there are no pictures outside. The reason I have time to sew! I am home from work so I could get my deer fence installed. Obviously not happening today.  This is spring in Cincinnati for ya!

It's been a busy week and weekend of sewing and assembling rows together. At last posting I reported I had ordered Colorful Quilts for Fabric Lovers from Blue Underground Studios. The authors are Amy Walsh and Janine Burke. I am enjoying this book and have learned a few new things about quilting with a "modern edge". This is my first experiencing at ironing my seams open. I like how the authors don't just say do it, but talked about the benefits and what they like about the appearance of seams pressed open. Since I am not nesting seams I used double pins on the seam of the narrow strip. This really did improve accuracy.  In the book they said that you did not have to back stitch your seams because the rows cross each other. However, I found that as I assembled the rows, some of the blocks seams seemed to unravel just a bit, especially the batiks. This made me just a little nervous. The quilt went together great, still I worried about washing and drying and would those seam, loosen up more in the future. So I decided to go ahead and back stitch the seams. The funny thing is I normally don't, but pressing the seams open felt odd, so I decided to assemble on the side of  strength. It really does not take much longer and the last five rows seemed more secure. (Of course that could just be in my head).

Pinning through the middle of the seams.

Seams pressed open so neatly!

Results in a beautifully matched (not perfect though) and neat front
 I am still uncertain about the raspberry fabric. My hubby said it looks fine.The quilt is together, so it's there to stay.  My son saw the quilt and likes it, but his "favorite" fabric is the dark blue in the picture above. My favorite is it's neighbor, the teal with the circles. He also wanted another row added so he can wrap up in it. This gave me the opportunity to make some darker fabric blocks and tone the quilt down a bit. He probably would have preferred something all dark blue and dark green, but I felt I needed some contrast for this pattern to work. Actually for future reference I saw a lovely all blue batik quilt in the book. The pattern is Crossroads. It is very similar to Juxtaposition. The difference is there are three blocks. The narrow strip sits   differently in each block. When assembled some are turned sideways.Very intriguing!  The blocks are also square, rather than the rectangles of this pattern. I have a feeling I may be making this quilt in the future. In reality if I had seen that pattern first I might have made Crossroads instead. However, I will say that there are certain design elements of this quilt that I really like. No regrets here.

Still needs to be quilted.  Amy Wash said that she loaded her quilt sideways on her long-arm so she could accentuate the vertical design. She used a long-line meander and neutral thread as to not distract from the design.I will send mine out. My son likes a dark blue tie dye fabric back on another quilt so I am hoping Sandy still has some. If not I have a back up plan.

Diagonal Dots 108'' Quilt Backing Blue/Purple
Designed by Windham Studios, this 108'' wide quilt backing features an allover dotted design in shades of blue and purple.I think it will be a nice alternative. I found it on
What the quilt will probably look like all crumpled up on my son's couch or floor.

Some words of wisdom from Amy and  Janine's book Color Quilts for Fabric Lovers.:

  • The Power of the seam. Two fabrics stitched together can look different than when they are sitting next to each other. When testing fabrics sew some together to see if you like the appearance.
  • Color is very personal. There are no wrong combination.
  • Have extra fabric on hand, make extra blocks.
  • Use a design wall.(I use the basement floor, but I can't keep my designs there or the cat rearranges them.)
  • Prewash 108" wide-backing fabrics whether it's cotton or batik,as the nature of the size may cause it to shrink differently.. (Never knew this and will prewash in the future.)
  • Detergent can create wear and bleeding. They recommend Orvus Quilt Soap (My bad..I need to go shopping).
  • I am a process oriented person, so I love how they talk about the inspiration for their patterns. I love how they talk about color, fabrics and building your stash.
  • I recommend this book. I think it will be one of my favorite.

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