Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Video of Blocking quilt

So, I am going to try one more time to post the video of how to block a landscape quilt. My attempt yesterday didn't work but hopefully, this time it will. Live and learn. I hope it works this time. It was the easiest method of blocking I've tried and I will use it from now on!

Joyce R. Becker
Landscape quilt artist, author, web site www.joycerbecker.com  JBecker3@hotmail.com


Video about blocking your quilts by Joyce R. Becker

I am not sure if this is going to work or not, but I am going to give it a try. I have a new way of blocking my quilts and I thought I would share a video with you about how I do it now. My friend Sonia Grasvik initially showed me how to block my landscape or wall quilts and trust me, it has been a life saver over the years. 
If you have never blocked your wall or landscape quilts before here's why you should:
Blocking your quilts results in quilts that lay flat without wavy or wobbly edges. What you are basically doing is marrying the three layers together so they are one and you do it with heat and water.
Previously, I blocked my quilts on the floors which were carpeted. Since we now have hardwood floors, I can no longer do that. Also, my arthritis prevents me from getting on the floor anymore anyway!
Go to a hardware store and buy a piece of insulation board. I bought one and then had it cut in half at the store.
Cover the shiny top of the insulation board with the Teflon fabric you can buy at the fabric store. 
On top of that, place a vinyl, flannel backed tablecloth, with the vinyl next to the Teflon.
Place your quilt face down on that sandwich and pin into insulation board with t-pins.
Dip a piece of muslin or a tea towel in water and squish out some water so it is not dripping.
Place it on one corner of your quilt
Heat your iron to cotton setting, dry heat NO STEAM.
Iron the muslin until it is dry, pressing down at the same time
Move muslin and repeat until you have done that do the whole quilt. 
If possible, place board under a ceiling fan or project a fan on the quilt so it dries quicker.
Once the quilt is dry, square it, add your binding, and Voile, You are done! 

Monday, June 20, 2016


Well, as you might know, sometimes when you try something, it doesn't always work! In this case, I quilted the bottom of my quilt, Mt. Rainier, reflecting in Tipsoo Lake with a variegated thread. While I was quilting it, it looked fine. When I hung it on my working wall, it looked like KA KA. The darker portions of the thread stood out and didn't look pretty. So, I said to myself, "Well, I guess you'll just have to pull out all the quilting threads."

Have you ever "reverse stitched" quilting threads or tried pulling them out. Maybe things would of been fine if I were yanking out quilting threads on a commercial fabric but I was in fact, pulling them out of a fabric I hand-painted. As I pulled them out, my cloth starting looking like it came from another planet and the blues became almost white. So, half-way through the process, I bagged it.

Of course, I hadn't painted enough matching fabric when I initially painted my sky and water fabrics, so what to do?????? Digging through my stash, I found a perfectly lovely hand-painted fabric by Mickey Lawler that  sorta kinda "went"  with the sky fabric. I dug out my wax pastels and did some shading to reflect the sky and voila! it looked pretty darn good.

In order to remove the fabric I previously quilted, I cut away the backing, batting, and hand- painted fabrics. Luckily, I had enough backing fabric leftover, so I hand-stitched it to the back of the quilt, placed another piece of batting inside, followed by the Mickey Lawler fabric. The major issue was the trees and the mountain reflection were then twice as thick so it was kinda sorta touch and go stitching them down to the new fabric and backing and batting. It also required more machine embroidery and a pretty large needle to go through all of the layers. Before stitching those layers down, I slid in three layers of different colored tulle to make the reflections on the water a bit darker than the sky. 

I am now "re-quilting" the bottom portion of the water with a different colored thread! Lesson learned, always test your quilting on a like piece of fabric before going to the actual project!
Here's a photo of the quilt prior to quilting it with the wrong thread. I'll post a new photo once I finish the quilting!

Happy quilting!