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Crazy Quilting Tute #1

Thursday, May 10, 2012




I invite you to think back to any time you've seen a crazy quilt?

Most people are drawn to the 'crazy' way these special quilts look or maybe the hand stitched embroidery or the other multitudes of embellishments you can buy these days were the creativity that drew you in!

Personally, I love the look of the old time crazy quilts with lots of bold colors, endless amounts of hand stitching that really spells out "hand made" and you won't need a rotary cutter etc!

For those of  you who have already made one or more crazy quilts, this little tutorial can be a gift to a special friend. 

Carli's Special Effects Supplies:
 Used top quality evening wear clothing, even flimsy stuff
upholstery fabrics of a light texture
labels from clothing
ribbons, lace, buttons

Welcome to this first tutorial of four on how you can achieve a fabulous one of a kind crazy quilt!

Starting point!
Foundation muslin cut into 12.5 in.squares
(Beginners start with one square to completion)
(Experienced quilters can start with four squares) 

Pick out a selection of 6 focus fabrics that are in the same color choice, but with variable prints, textures and types of fabric.

Pick out a smaller selection of three to five accompanying fabrics that would add 'sparkle' and/or 'interest' to your eye.


Bold and dramatic effect!


Soft and dreamy effect! Lots of cotton here.

 

These are my choices for this tutorial! Yellow, orange, blue and brown! Only the orange flowered white background is cotton, all the rest of the fabrics are recycled silk from clothing. They may be folded, but that's because I've been harvesting awesome fabric from friends, family and thrift shops for decades!!
Yep, decades!

These are simply suggestions of colors choices I'd use to give you the idea that you pick the colors you'll use and put all the rest away. I want you to think outside of this instructional tutorial to express what it is you are mulling around in your head! Whatever that is, you'll mull it over, reflect and begin again with a new light on life!

This is supposed to be fun, creative and reflective! 

Taking a step towards the world of expression with crazy quilts is all about how you pull yourself away from the addiction to commercial patterns where the whole quilt pattern is laid out for you. If we were together in my studio I'd give you a hug!

Therapeutic comes to mind.....be brave, be a wild woman! 


 I chose to add a green Chinese style satin, brown plaid kind of suit material, some sparkle of black orange cotton, deep purple embellishment and some various pre-embroidered vintage linens and the tea towel from Australia. 

Procedure:

Cut a five sided chunk, pin this piece on the muslin, centered.

  Cut a chunk of another focus fabric, place good side down on one side of your 5 sided beginner chunk.
This creates a 'V' shape to fill.
  In order to cover off the 'V' area, you'll need to cut a larger 'v' shaped alternate focus fabric. Place good side down, with at least another inch longer beyond where you'll stop sewing, back stitch.
Fold over the yellow, press so that when you turn over it covers the area as well as any seams with lots of room to adjust as you press and pin.


Fold over the first seam.
 
 Fold over the yellow a second time and press again.

Go to another side of the original center chunk and always covering seams, sew a  new piece on.

 At the end of the new piece, I see a 'V' shape and to cover this off without wasting fabric, you need to cut a 'v' shaped new chunk. Placing this good side down so that the 'v' will be covered off.

Sometimes, you need to make it a curved seam by turning under and pressing along the outside edge you form a curve.


 So moving along, you just keep on going, finding solutions, seeing new ways to cover off seams and prepare the complete the covering of the entire 12.5 inch block.

Its really quite simple once you calm down, have a cup of tea or whatever you like to drink and let go!

For beginners, stop once you've covered off one 12.5 inch muslin. If you wnat to add embriodery stitches, now is the time, but applique stitch along the turned over edge etc. You'll need to purchase some colors of embroidery thread you like and a chenille needle. Add a border all around and make it into something like a lovely cushion cover below!


For experienced quilters, move on to completing all four muslin blocks, then start gathering your embroidery threads, lace, etc for doing the hand work.

In part 2 we'll cover off embroidery stitches in a basic nature
In part 3 we'll continue with special embellishments purchased and made specifically for the piece you are working on.
In part 4 we'll kick it up to completely funky expression of becoming a thrift store purchaser that helps the environment while you make beautiful things.

All the best,

Carli




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