Friday, March 27, 2009

Cutting out fused fabrics


I got this email and thought I would respond to it for all to see.

I just read your blog and may have had an "aha" moment. You say that after you fuse your fabric, you remove the paper backing and then cut it. You also say that you end up with clean edges. Does this mean that if I were to cut out a flower with scissors, that I, too, would have clean edges? I usually button hole stitch my pieces, but I have tried just using an embroidery running stitch close to my cut out piece for depth. I like the look, but some of my pieces (ie. "flowers), tend to ravel, and I don't like the look of that. These are all wall hangings, so I don't have to worry about washing them.

Any comments you can give me would be helpful!



Hi Kris,
First of all are you pre-washing your fabrics before using with fusible? It is important to wash commercial fabrics first as they have starch on them which makes the fusible not want to stick well. And yes I think you will like this method much better. Fuse your fabrics and let the fusible cool. Remember it is an adhesive that melts when it is heated and solidifies when it cools. Remove the release paper and place the release paper on top of your pattern piece. Use a pencil and trace around the design you want to make. Place the release paper pencil side against the fused side of the fabric and press with a hot dry iron for just a quick second. The pencil will transfer to the back of your fused fabric. Now take your scissors and cut out just inside the pencil line. Place your fused flower head in the right place on your design and fuse it in place. You are all set to go. I like to stitch in the ditch around all my design elements, because all of my fused pieces are art and go on the wall. That is the only "finishing" of the edges that I do. I have found that "Wonder Under", #805 on the end of the bolt, is a very durable and dependable product. They also make a product called Wonder Web that comes without the paper and says #807 on the end of the bolt. This is a great product but not what I use.
AND I got such a large teflon sheet from Bear Thread Designs . They custom cut it for me and one for Laura too.
Ya know, you could have me come to your guild and teach a class on fusing and learn ALL the great tricks and tips that I have about fusing.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Illinois Landscape

Diane wrote-

Love the landscape, Frieda. Is is fused or pieced? The edges of the pieces are so neat that it looks as though they've been sewn. I'd love to see how you'll quilt it, too -- the colors are just wonderful.

So I thought I'd talk about the construction of this quilt. So I thought I would tell you a little about that. I usually start with a sketch. I couldn't find the original sketch for this one, but I know I did it very quickly while riding in the car on the way to Minnesota several years ago. The above one has a similar feel to it.
I then blow up the sketch to the size that I want it. This quilt is about 36" x 20".
I decide on the fabrics I want to start with and I fuse them all. I use only #805 WonderUnder. I remove all the paper from the fabrics as I am using them and cut out all my pieces with a rotary cutter and no paper on the fabric, so that all the edges are really smooth and clean. Then I reassemble my pieces on either a piece of release paper, or in my case a large Teflon sheet. I have one that measures 40" x 60". WoWo
This quilt is all raw edge fused, meaning that I haven't finished any of the edges in any way. Then I layer it with batting and backing, fusing it down to the batting. For this quilt all I did was stitch in the ditch, right next to each "seam" where two pieces slightly overlap each other and are stuck together. I stitched this quilt with several different colors of #30 weight Madeira Rayon Thread. I love the fields and the sky, this is what it looks like in my neck of the woods once you get away from suburbia.
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Monday, March 23, 2009

Check it out


I have quilts on the back inside cover of these two magazines this month. You should check it out. When I showed up in Baton Rouge last week one of my students had the magazines to show me. They look great.
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Live Wire


I’m trying a new program to enter my blog entries. It is called Live Wire and is from Microsoft. Melody recommended it to me. So let’s see if it is any easier.

FAIllinoislandscapeThis quilt is called Illinois Landscape. If you click on it, it will open larger in a new window, that’s good.

Live Wire let's you size the pictures in the blog formatting, blogger doesn't let you do that.

It will take some time to get used to this format, but I think I like it already.

I have to go exercise.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Favorite Flowers

Some of my favorite flowers will be appearing soon. The much maligned Dandelion! Each year when I walk up to the woods these are the first flowers that greet me as I approach. The flower heads are so bright and cheery and long ago I realized they deserved more respect. The lowly Dandelion has one of the brightest and most velvety flower heads in the natural kingdom and is a tenacious bloomer. Just because we don't like to see them growing in our pristine grass yards is no reason to hate them. The first time I made this quilt is was very large, 50" x 40" and was part of the Husquavargna Traveling Exhibit that went to Barcelona, Spain.

Petite Dandelion 16" x 20"
I now offer it as one of my fused patterns. The size of this pattern is 16" x 20". And of course in each of my patterns you also get the tiny version to make using your left over scraps. The tiny versions measure 8.5" x 11". They are precious indeed. This tiny version is made from silk scraps.

Tiny Dandelion 8.5" x 11"
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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Quilting Arts Table runner


I got this email a few days ago, so I thought I would post a picture of the Leafing Out Table Runner. If you go to QA website I think you can down load the directions for it. It is all raw edged fused. I have washed it over and over again and it holds up excellent!!!

Hi Frieda,
Is there a picture of the Leafing Out table runner anywhere? I downloaded the pattern from quilting arts. It looks fantastic and I sure would like to see a picture of it. Otherwise it will be quite a mystery quilt.
I noticed your email address quilting goddess. Well, about 10 years ago, I went to see an orthopedist about my bad knees. His office was so fun. Lots of crazy pictures and fun humor. So when I filled out my occupation on my intake form, I wrote down domestic goddess. I presumed the docs never really read those forms. Well he took my file off the outside of the door and started laughing really hard. He walked in and said, "Let me shake your hand,
I've never been in the company of a domestic goddess before." It was fun and memorable, but I never put it on a form again.
From one goddess to another,
Just had to show you this miniquilt I made for the Dallas Quilt Celebration Miniquilt Auction. It sold for $200. In all, we raised over $6000. for the Ronald McDonald Center here.

It uses your beautiful gold fabric. When I bought it all I could see was pumpkins! Love your fabric!


Fran was in my class this fall in Dallas and she sent me this great photo. I love it.

I have been on the road teaching. I was in Baton Rouge, LA teaching for the Gulf State Quilting Association. They have a small symposium that is in it's 26th year. There were a great group of teachers offering a variety of classes and we had a fabulous time. I even got to eat some Cajun food while I was there. I am very impressed with the resilience of these quilters they have faced so many natural disasters and still they keep quilting.
I am now in SugarLand TX. I will be presenting my lecture FUN Fusing this evening for the Quilt Guild of Greater Houston and tomorrow I will teach Free Motion Machine Quilting. If you are in the area stop by tonight.
I of course am missing home and George very much.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

More wedding pictures

Here are some more wedding pictures. I misspelled some headings, ignore that. It takes too long to reload.

Monday, March 9, 2009



I have an article appearing in a British on line magazine this month called QuiltWow. It is featuring my quilt Winter Forest. I hope you go and check it out.

QuiltWOW is a quarterly publication exclusively on the internet, featuring the very best British and International tutors, giving step by step details of varying textile techniques, ideas and their use in our quilt world. Be creative with machine and hand quilting. Learn new methods and ideas for machine and hand embellishment. Dabble in mixed media. And we won't forget those of you who enjoy piecing and appliqué. Keep in tune with the latest developments in products and technology. You will find all this here. We review books and products and keep you in touch with all that's new.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Multi color gradation dyeing


One of the ways I dye fabric is with multiple colors all on one piece of fabric. This gives the fabric a water color effect and makes my quilted art so much more interesting than flat one color fabrics. My March Special is a collection of 4 long quarter yards of three spring flower colors and one multi colored green for all your flower creations. If you can't have flowers yet, at least you can have them inside on your quilts.
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Friday, March 6, 2009

Flooded with Color

One of the classes that I teach is called "Flooded with Color". It is a great class to learn the basics about hand dyeing fabric. We start out dyeing the color wheel in two different color ways and then move onto other fun ways to dye fabric. It is very important to know how the color wheel works and how colors are created, so that you can begin to experiment with creating your own colors.

Dyeing class in southern Illinois. We worked hard and got gorgeous fabrics and got a tan at the same time!!
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Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The wedding pictures begin

So I'm starting to share pictures, I know this could get a little out of hand, but bare with me. Here are the first of what will probably be many installments.

Spring is coming

We are getting ready for the spring shows that are coming up. First IQA in Rosemont outside Chicago at the Donald Stevenson Convention center. April 16-19, Laura and I will have our booth again. I hope you will all plan on attending and visit the booth.
And then of course AQS in Paducah. I love Paducah, probably because of all the flowers in bloom and spring really being in the air. This year our booth will be on the main exhibit floor. We have been moved up!!! I really hope you will make the effort to come and see us.
But for right now you can view us on the Quilting Arts Blog, check it out.

I will post some wedding pictures soon. I have to transfer them from my other computer. The wedding was great, it all went well, the bride and groom were happy and funny and lively and we danced till we dropped.
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