Thursday, April 19, 2007

Sashing the Crazy Quilt Blocks

I had a marathon session today, getting the 25 blocks sashed.
I am so happy with how it turned out, and it is all due to a little conceptual break-through I had...Undoubtedly others have thought of this before, because it is so logical a solution...but it was a new idea to me.
The big problems with narrow sashing between heavily embellished crazy quilt blocks are two: one is keeping the sashing strips even as they are sewn. The eye really picks up wavy lines in narrow sashing. The second problem is the difference in the weight between the sashing strips and those heavy, multi-fabric layered blocks. So to solve these problems I fused 3/4" strips--the finished width of my sashing--of fusible craft "batting" (it is more like an extremely thin timtex) to the center of my strips.
This solved the two problems at once. The batting gave me a perfect sewing line, and it filled out my dupioni sashing just perfectly so that the quilt hangs just great.

You can tell by the lighting that I started early this morning! These are my craft batting strips.

I used my ruler to line up 1/4" on either side of my fused strip and sliced it. I didn't think interfacing my dupioni first was necessary because of the fused craft batting...but I should have known better. The edges did fray a bit during sewing.

The other good decision I made was in the choice of foot I used on my Juki, the "compensating presser foot". The "toes" on the left of the foot give slightly more clearance for the fabric to go under than the "toe" on the right. This helped with the bulk of the edge of the block going under that side of the foot...it also gave me a nice 1/4" edge to line the edge of my seam up against. All in all, a great way to go.

But...when there was a bead smack in the seamline I had to interrupt the machine sewn seam, then go back and sew that part of the seam by hand.

I just couldn't cut off that pretty purly white bead, now could I?

The lighting isn't great in this shot, but you can see the results of today's efforts. So far, so good!

Do click on this picture so you can see Stephanie Novatski's tree in good detail...I am so enjoying "getting to know" these blocks better as I work with them!

14 comments :

Possibilities, Etc. said...

Great tutorial on the method!! I shall refer to it when you get me totally converted - leaning that way. those blocks are incredibly beautiful - must be a joy to see them up close. JAH

Stephanie Novatski said...

Allie, you just amaze me with your expertise! It would have taken me a year to do that much and I "cheat" and use ribbon! LOL You are my hero.

Peticelul Romanesc said...

I think you are enjoying every step of the process! Thanks for the tutorial! Corina

Barbara C said...

Great problem-solving with the sashing. The quilt looks great. I love these colors.

Jo in NZ said...

This is a beautiful quilt that your group has put together Allie, and you have done a great job putting it together.
I think I have seen these blocks on someones flickr page (Barbara maybe) would you have a link for that?
Stunning work by all, I am envious...

Micki said...

These blocks are so stunning. The finished quilt will be absolutely beautiful.

Susan said...

Wow. This is stunning! I love the sashing and the idea to face the center strip. Brilliant! The color choice was also beautiful Great work and I'm so glad that you shared it.

Charlene said...

What an inspiring project throughout! Wonderful cause, beautiful blocks, and great tutorial!! You make it look almost simple - and I've never put a quilt together. I do have one question - how do you get the horizontal and vertical sashing to match up?

Vickie said...

How blessed are our WTWW ArtBra Ladies' blocks to have your sweet fingers and that wonderful brain assembling this quilt. The tutorial is super!
x,vic

Marty52 said...

Oh, my, what gorgeous eye candy! Lovely job on the sashing (of course)!

Ummm... are their any blogs associated with these artists?

Deb H said...

Oh Allie you did good! What a great idea! You're a genius!

I love the richness of the gold, & the layout is perfect.

Ribbonwiz said...

Allie,
What a beautiful stunning quilt this is going to be..
The ladies have put so much love and care into the blocks..
Your method of consruction is perfect and thank you for the tutorial...

Debra Spincic said...

Super Duper! First class all the way!

belvedere beads said...

i am not a quilter, but i love anything wildly decorative. this quilt is sooo beautiful... every inch of it.