Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Sylvia's Irises

My dear quilty friend, Sylvia, brought me this paper-pieced wall hanging. Well, I think it might be more descriptive to say, she hurled it at me in disgust (not really). Ha! You see, Sylvia originally pieced this quilt many years ago, when Foundation Paper Piecing was a few generations back.

Paper Piecing is a method that involves a paper diagram, and you actually sew fabric TO the paper. And then you layer on another piece of fabric, in a very specific order (dictated by the pattern instructions), and sew THAT to the paper, and on and on. When you're done, you rip the paper off, and voila! It is really cool for creating perfectly accurate piecing - a requirement for really intricate patterns. Unlike regular piecing, there is no stretching or distorting. It's perfect. But somewhat time-consuming.

And in Sylvia's case, it was even MORE time-consuming, because the pattern was purchased a long time ago, before we knew as many tricks and tips for Foundation Paper Piecing, and it required her to iron the fabric to heat-bond paper. She didn't really know what to do with it at the time, so she just stowed it away and decided to deal with it another day.

Flash forward several years, and Sylvia wants to get this project done! So she had to wash and scrub and rip and tear and finesse all the little bits of paper to get them off. What a pain! Personally, I'm sure glad she took the time to do it, though, because I got to collaborate with her on this striking piece!

I used two layers of batting (QD Select on bottom, Hobbs PolyDown on top) to make the un-quilted areas really pop. I used McTavishing in the blue background, at a dense scale, and I pretty much stayed off the irises. I just stitched in the ditch of the stems and leaves. Some diamonds with continuous curves and serpentine in the borders, to contrast with the free-flowing filler of the background blue.

All my quilting is free-motion, hand-guided on a longarm quilting machine.

No comments:

Post a Comment