Friday, March 28, 2008

My First Quilt

Here it is . . . the famous one, the famous one. My very first quilt: "Checkerboard Chain" made during a 4-week beginner's quilt class. The color scheme is strikingly ordinary but the gold inner border helped the quilt "pop" and not fizzle into ho-hum. As I approached quilting, I grabbed at anything I could find to use, whether it fit the quilting space or not. Desperate without a darning foot, I used my walking foot and turned that baby all the way through. How I quilted it: stitch-in-the-ditch around the gold border, a stencil design for the 4-patch areas (blue thread), and a pre-printed stitch-and-tear cable design on the cream border (gold thread). There are lots of unquilted open spaces but I love looking at it and seeing how much I've learned to do since then.

Copyright 2008, Sharon Baggs

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Book Bag Completed

Sarah, known for creating things on the fly, learned to meander free motion at age 12 by doodling on a white board. Now 18, she stipples like nobody's business. She outline stitched the star and leaf designs on this sassy little book bag, created for her dear college friend Charis. Once the two pieces were quilted, she sewed the three sides together, leaving the top open. With purple fabric she added lining, binding around the top edge, and straps. Very cool. I'm going to make one with black and white fabrics, trimmed with red. But first, I'm binding three quilts this week.

Copyright 2008, Sharon Baggs

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Batik Book Bag

Spring break provides time for extracurricular creations. Scoffing at my suggestion to search the internet for instructions to make a book bag, my daughter, Sarah, proceeded to improvise and design it herself. And it turned out so beautifully! She started by cutting two pieces of Warm and White batting--a good choice because the scrim layer makes a durable bag. Next she pieced batik fabrics randomly, then trimmed them to 14" x 16". The batik pieces were layered with the batting (no backing) and free motion quilted with Superior's King Tut thread.

Keep fingers a few inches away from the needle to avoid quilting them. This quilter did jab her right forefinger but she recovered and persevered; you'll see the completed bag next time!

Copyright 2008, Sharon Baggs

Sunday, March 16, 2008

First blog for my worldwide readers

In honor of yesterday's National Quilting Day, my blog has officially launched! Sit down, thread your machine, and get ready for the ride.

This is an easy beginner's quilt called Fence Post, inspired by The Art of Classic Quiltmaking by Harriet Hargrave and Sharyn Craig. I used a walking foot and orange cotton thread to quilt cross-hatching lines from edge-to-edge. Quilting tips: Low-adhesive blue painter's tape is helpful for marking quilting lines. Simply lay down a 12" piece, stitch to the right edge of the tape, and keep moving it along. After a few lines, you'll be able to eyeball the quilting lines without using the tape. Try it!

Copyright 2008, Sharon Baggs