Friday, June 21, 2013

Going Crazy - with crazy quilt stitches!

June 21, 2013


As if life isn’t crazy enough, Kaye and I have gotten hooked playing with crazy quilt stitches and blocks.  Since we love twilling, we decided to start adding other stitches to our twilling projects which then led to playing with all kinds of crazy quilt stitches, which in turn, led to experimenting with silk ribbon embroidery and beads.  
Oh, the beads! The crazy quilt blocks I have been working on are made with brighter, more modern looking fabric which lends itself perfectly to BLING!  I started out with just a few beads, but then I had to keep adding more and more and more. 
Kaye is using more vintage style fabric and silk ribbon embroidery looks great on it.  She has been using several different widths and types.  She has used some hand dyed which is beautiful.  The quilt shop has also started to carry a larger variety of silk ribbons and beads - and books related to crazy quilting. 

Getting started on a crazy quilt block is very simple.  We have been foundation piecing our basic block using Carol Daok’s paper piecing paper.  Patterns for the blocks are available in many books and EQ computer software.  I’m sure you can also google it and come up with some patterns OR simply take a ruler and drawn lines through a square at different angles and you have now made your own pattern. 

Then pick a variety of fabrics using many different types of fabrics (cotton, velveteen, wovens, silk …) and piece your block.   After removing the paper from the back of the block, we then iron on a fusible stabilizer to the back or if you foundation piece with the pattern drawn on fabric, you won’t need to do this as the foundation will act as a stabilizer. 

Now the real fun begins.  We look through all kinds of crazy stitch books and pictures of crazy quilts to look for ideas for what we want to accomplish.   We usually start by decorating the seams in the block and then fill in the open areas with a variety of stitches and embellishments.  It is much easier to do all the stitching first, then add the embellishments.  If the buttons, beads, or silk ribbon are added as you go, your thread will catch on EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM as you try to complete other stitches on the block.  So, we suggest you plan out what you want to do, but wait until the stitching is complete before adding the embellishments. 

If you are in Eudora area, you are welcome to come by Quilting Bits & Pieces and take a look at the blocks we have completed.  We also have a Crazy Quilt Club that meets once a month.  The charge is only $5.00 and you have the option of purchasing a kit for $10.00

I hope you get as excited about this as I am.  And PLEASE bring in any completed (or partially completed) blocks.  We love show and tell. 

(the proud grandma of Will, Olivia, Luke, Brady, and new twins: Lincoln and Audrey pictured here)