Friday, August 31, 2012

Merge Your Serging and Quilting Skills

Thirteen's a Charm
©Sharon V. Rotz

Have your serging skills and quilting skills joined forces? 

If you are looking for options to marry your skills and create wonderfully detailed quilts, 
please join me at the 

in Madison, WI
 on September 6, 2012.

I will be sharing ideas for using your serger as a quilting tool on 
Stage A
at 2:15 p.m.

Please stop by to say "hi" and get inspired to dust off your serger 
and use it for your next quilting project.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Tuesday's Tile - Is your Serger a Quilting Tool?

Quilter's Tile - Playtime
8" x 8"
©2012 - Sharon V. Rotz

Are you a serger owner? If you are, do you see your serger as one of your quilting tools? 

With the rapid speed of your serger, you can quickly piece your quilts. I've had fun zipping through my piecing. I've also found that I like the added detail I get when the serging is done on the front of the quilt.

Normally we stitch our seams with right sides together, but if you like the look of the serging showing on the front of your project you will start with fabrics wrong sides together.

You will be creating a seam allowance on the front side of the fabrics rather than on the back side.

When the seam is pressed open, the serged seam is showing.

With a detailed photo, you can see the color and thread accenting the pieced squares of this simple block.

Looking for more ideas for combining serging and quilting? I invite you to explore the ideas found in my book "Serge and Merge Quilts".

Dust off your serger and use it as your newest quilting tool. What will you make? 

Friday, August 24, 2012

Friday's Tip of the Day

Today, I would like to share an idea that keeps my seams in check and my stitches from wandering wildly as I walk the line, that narrow 1/4" seam line, that is!

When stitching 1/4" seams on long strips, I add a piece of tape to the bed of my machine. I place the tape in line with the outside edge of my 1/4" foot.

The fabric strip can be guided along the tape so it is in perfect position when it gets to the foot.

Your seam will be accurate and your stitching straight and true. 

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Tuesday's Tile - A Fishy Rescue

Quilter's Tile - A Fishy Rescue
8" x 8"
@2012 Sharon V. Rotz

This past week, I took a workshop with Darcy Lanz-Sage, an expert at fabric dying. We had the chance to try many different dying and printing techniques and I came home with wonderful fabrics to add to my collection.

This piece left a little to be desired. We were discharging color with a bleach gel and I think I got carried away. In my enthusiasm, I may not have been listening to the instructions. (It's been known to happen.)

But I'm always up for a quilt rescue so I didn't throw away this piece. I could see what could be interpreted as a fish skeleton.

With some hand embroidery stitches, my fish came to life.

I added a stitch that I previously tried and thought would work well as underwater vegetation. Just because it is called the "wheatear stitch" doesn't mean it couldn't breath "under the surface".

I added those fun, fun french knots at the top and bottom. And my rescue is complete.

Here's looking at you!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Shape up with Diet Quilts

Color My World
©Sharon V. Rotz

Is your stash getting a bit too weighty? 
Are your shelves beginning to bow under the stress? 
Is it time to trim down and shape up? 

Join me in Madison, WI 
on September 6, 2012 
at the Quilt Expo.

 I will be sharing ideas that can lighten the load and eat up your scraps.

I invite you to follow the link to sign up for my lecture 

See you on Thursday, Sept. 6 at 11:30.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Tuesday's Tile - Sashing Gone Astray

Quilter's Tile - Sashing Gone Astray
8" x 8"
©2012 Sharon V. Rotz

Today, I thought I would combine two techniques for using smaller pieces of fabric: paper piecing and string piecing. Both of these techniques are easily done using a foundation and both of these techniques will work well for making an interesting sashing in my newest quilter's tile.

I started with a sketch that I drew on paper. Already, I could see that the sashing strips between my 16 squares were a little aggressive. All those teeth were eating away at my squares. Yes, my project was beginning to go astray as the sashing strips began to take over.   

But, as they say, "What will be, will be!" 

I traced the pattern onto tracing paper that works well for paper piecing foundations. Here, I have begun to cut the foundations apart to use for my piecing. The 16 plain squares will become templates for cutting out the squares. Since all of the foundations will be used on the wrong side of the fabric, I also have to remember to place these templates on the wrong side of the fabric to cut my squares.

Here several of the pieces are cut, (some complete with string piecing) and laid in position on my original sketch.

Oh my, these pieces are quite small! 

The beauty of paper piecing is that despite the small size, I can achieve accuracy and perfect points.

As I started to stitch the pieces together,

I couldn't resist a look at the right side. Then, back to the wrong side and completion of the piecing.

Yes, the sashing has taken over and the 16 gallant, but misshaped squares are pushed to the background.  A new identity has emerged.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Are you on the Go?

Braid Craft - Mag Bag
12" x12"
©2012 Sharon V. Rotz

Are you organized and ready to go at the drop of a hat? Today I would like to share a braided bag that is just the right size for your favorite magazines or e-reader. It combines three fabrics, which are cut into strips and braided together. A color coordinated yarn is inserted in the braid to add a playful, textural detail.

The Mag Bag is one of my designs from Braid Craft Designer Bags and Totes. The book and the braidcrafting tools are available through Herrschners, Inc.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Tuesday's Tile - A Four Patch?

Quilter's Tile - Perfect Harmony
8" x 8"
©2012 - Sharon V. Rotz

My husband and I recently celebrated our wedding anniversary and through our many years of marriage, we are thankful for the many blessings we have enjoyed.

But one thing that I have learned is that we don't always solve problems in the same way. Even if it is a simple as sharing a stuffed pork chop or making a home repair, we both come up with different solutions. Is one better than the other? Maybe one idea has a slight advantage, but more often, I have finally come to realize, it really doesn't make a difference.

This brings me to today and the idea of cutting my fabric square into four patches. Should they be equal? Could they be off center? Will one idea shake up the world and the other leave it flat? Probably not.

Are we struggling too hard when making our quilting decisions?

After going off center on the cutting, the next choice is how to put my four patches back together again.

Will the sashing area between the four be equal?

Or will the four patches all line up on the outside?

Or will it be a compromise?

Many solutions, but no clear cut winner that I can see. I will make my choice and not look back.

Maybe I should have spent more time thinking about other things, like the fact that I have a wonderful foot for my machine that would have made the job of sewing on the trim much easier. (I'll try to keep this in mind for my next project.)

Perhaps the greatest lesson we can learn is to live, making the best decisions we can at the time,  looking forward with love and filling our days with harmony.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Searching for Aqua?

Potamogeton Rising
48" x 68"
©Sharon V. Rotz

If you are looking for an event to visit this weekend, 
check out the 
"Aqua - Fluid Motion" juried exhibit 
at the Central Wisconsin Cultural Center, 240 Johnson St. Wisconsin Rapids, WI.  
The exhibit includes oils, acrylics, watercolors, sculptures and photography 
as well as several fiber pieces.

I love shows that include a variety of mediums so viewers can truly see the many options there are for expressing themselves through art.

I am very excited that "Potamogeton Rising" was awarded a blue ribbon.

(Now, while we are inspired by water and its motion, it would be so nice to watch a little of it falling on our parched fields and raising the levels of our lakes and streams.)
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...