This weekend I was packing. We are getting our house ready to sell so we can relocate. My “real” home is presently nearly 200 miles from the office. I go home on the weekends and have an apartment just a few miles from the office where I live during the week. We’ve decided to make our real home up here.
So as I was removing quilts from the walls and getting ready to pack them, I was thinking about all the different techniques and twists that can be done with a single idea. I started specifically thinking about embroidery. I do machine embroidery but I think the same ideas apply to hand embroidery.
The first, most obvious technique with embroidery is to embroider plain squares of fabric and set the squares together with sashing. Apply borders, quilt, bind and you have a quilt.
I “wrote” my name in the quilting on this quilt. I was traveling a lot with the quilt in my trunk show and it seemed like a good idea at the time.
This is a wall hanging so it is fairly small. The fabric is silk dupioni which gives the quilt a very elegant look. I think you can put just about anything on silk dupioni and it becomes classier than if it were on cotton. And I applied crystals to add a little more glamour.
This second quilt is simply a Jennifer Lokey Design Studio pattern that I made. I followed the pattern exactly. This was another easy-to-create quilt. I did the embroidery on squares of fabric, used the squares as part of the blocks, added borders, quilted and put on the binding. This is also small – a wall hanging.
The third example I have today is using the embroidery as the quilting. There are designs for machine embroidery specifically digitized to be used as the quilting, but you could do the same thing with hand embroidery. For this particular quilt, I used a package of charm squares to make four-patch blocks. I set those together alternately with a square of the light green fabric and added the borders. Then I basted the 3 layers of my quilt together and quilted the light green squares with a machine embroidered design.
I stitched on buttons through all three layers on the four-patch blocks. The quilting in the purple borders is a straight stitch down the middle. In the light green border the quilting is one row of decorative stitching and one row of straight stitch.
This last example is more unusual. I adapted it from a design created by Pfaff’s team in Sweden when they were introducing a new machine. It includes two embroidery designs. The peacock feather embroideries are stitched over the top of the appliqued peacock tail.
The Celtic designs could have been used as quilting but that is not what I did. I simply embroidered them and then finished the applique. (One of the bird’s pink legs is appliqued over the Celtic embroidery.) The yellow wing has rows of decorative stitching. Each “feather” in the top knot is a row of machine stitching with a different single decorative stitch to end the row. I quilted in the ditch to keep the peacock as the focus.
So there are four different looks, four different ideas for using embroidery in quilts. I hope one of them starts your head going with an idea for something fun to make.
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