Monday, May 30, 2011

Did I tell you???

I love quilts. Well, duh, you say. Look at her banner picture! And her Facebook albums! Did I tell you I also love Quilt in a Day books by Eleanor Burns? I think her instructions and practical time saving ideas are wonderful, and just up my alley. I love things to be fast, fun, and easy. Well, maybe that didn't come out right, but you understand my meaning, right?? I meant projects. The quilt in my banner was a QIAD Lover's Knot that is now on my bed. Although, to be honest, I let it sit as blocks for about 5 years before I recounted and decided to finish it, realizing I hadn't made a mistake and had the right number of blocks. It was one of my earlier quilts, and I know all the mistakes.

This was another UFO quilt. It was together and partially quilted, and I pulled it off the shelf when I was organizing my fabric a few weeks ago, and decided to finish it. Yes, I know these are called Quilt in A Day, and mine become Quilt over a Few Years, but they are pretty, and were fun. This one's challenge was in the quilting. I was working on the butterfly appliques, which is where the frustration started. I don't think I had the lucite table to make the machine bed larger, and I was looking for butterfly stencils for the other blocks. The quilt was large and difficult to stitch around the butterflies. Excuses, but... sometimes when one is frustrated, it is best to look at a project later. This was one of those. I am a much better quilter than when I started this. I love stippling, and have played with other designs. I am better at using free motion quilting on stencil designs. This quilt said "Finish me now" because my confidence has grown. So, here are some pictures. It measures 72 by 115 inches. And it is listed in my Etsy shop.




Friday, May 13, 2011

A Recent Project

Hi! I have been asked to do some unusual things with my sewing talents. This is the story of one of them.

A few years ago, my friend Deb's mother-in-law was diagnosed with Alzheimer's and moved to an assisted living home. Deb and her beautiful daughter, Lorenna, were going through the house and discovered a pile of tulle and taffeta at the bottom of a closet. The find was Pat's wedding dress. Much of the tulle was damaged and the gown was stained. Lorenna put it on, and it fit her beautifully. She loved its full twirly skirt. She wanted to reuse it for a prom dress. I suggested it be dry-cleaned before we did any major work, because the staining would affect the amount of repairs needed. They looked at colors of tulle, and picked a pale lavender/grey, and eggplant purple. I was a little surprised they didn't want to stick to the ivory, or go with something light, but when we tested the eggplant color against Lorenna's complexion, it really made her glow. My task was to remove any damaged tulle and replace it with the eggplant. The gown was soaked again, since the bead work became dark with the dry cleaning process, and I set to work taking apart an almost 60 year-old dress.

Getting the dress apart took quite a few hours. The tulle side panels were double stitched to the front panels. The bodice was triple stitched, and then some areas had lace appliqued on top. That alone was a challenge. I used the ripped and torn tulle as a basic pattern for replacing the parts, including the pleated bodice, and sleeves.

Here are some pictures.