For Christmas this year I splurged and bought myself a few titles from my publisher, C & T Publishing.
I took my time and went through each one slowly, unwrapping each page like a present.
One of my favorite projects was from Applique Outside the Lines – No Rules, No Ruler, by Becky Goldsmith and Linda Jenkins. (You might remember me gushing over seeing Becky at Quilt Market in an earlier blog.)
I had first seen this dynamic duo years ago on Alex Anderson’s televised quilt show. I remember them showing how to make appliques and thinking – I like how the work looks, but I could never do that! All the pieces and the precision and the fussy fussy. Cripes!
I went to a quilt show in the fall of 2010 and I took photos of only six quilts. (That means I only really liked these 6) One of them was very whimsical and charming. I didn’t write down the name of the maker, but…
…it just happens to be from a pattern found in the book that I just bought! This is a project called Tree O Life and it is a great example of the lively, lyrical approach found in Applique Outside the Lines.
Each time I see a quilt from their creative team, called Piece O Cake Designs, I feel a bit green with envy because their applique work really appeals to me.
However, the fact is that I avoid applique like it is a four letter word. This is strange, when you know I wrote a whole book about applique chair quilts! While I espouse using a glue stick at every turn, Becky and Linda show both hand and fusible applique directions in the book, so you can use either approach.
The leaf quilt on the cover really called out to me and I hopped at the chance to make it in raspberry, pinks, and greys with green stems. This would give me a chance to use all these great greys that a dear friend sent me as a Christmas gift. (Winning!)
Of course, I started out using glue stick like I do for my large pieces on the chairs. But I found that this really stretched the edges of the leaves and with the small pieces it was a real pain – I got glue all over everything BUT the leaves! The leaves ended up in stupid little curls of fabric or with so much fringe they looked like J Lo’s false eyelashes.
Then I smartened up a bit and began to put fusible on the back of my pinks. I couldn’t be patient enough to use the books’s templates, but I didn’t think the girls would mind if I rotary cut them.
What I did was remove the paper off the pieces first and then cut each leaf with a swoop, swoop of the rotary cutter. Then each one was ready to place and fuse quickly and easily. Boss!
I sewed a funky zig zag stitch around each fused leaf and then added the green stems.
Then I added a fun and funky border – just like the girls! I even made a great pieced binding, too. Love it!
So what’s next, you ask?