Thursday, May 30, 2013

How to remove renegade fabric dyes

After I washed and dried the batik quilt to remove a few marking lines, there were some pink streaks of dye on the blue batik. Ugh! I popped the quilt into the washing machine for a rinse cycle only, added a Color Catcher by Shout--looks like a white dryer sheet--and it picked up the renegade dyes the second time around.

Lesson's always wise (the first time around) to use a dye catcher when washing batik or any other fabric that might be a "bleeder". With treatment, the problem usually corrects itself.

Two other products, Synthrapol and Retayne, are also used to treat these types of fabric. I use Synthrapol when I know there is excess dye in a fabric. I usually wash those fabrics before cutting them for a quilt. When I suspect a fabric in a quilt might bleed but I did not prewash or pre-treat the fabric, I will use Retayne. This product keeps the dye from transferring to another fabric.

Copyright ©2013, Sharon Baggs

Monday, May 27, 2013

Quilting Batiks--Part 2

The batik quilt I've been quilting on for-e-v-e-r is finally finished. It's the pattern Yellow Brick Road (Atkinson Designs) and is my resume of stitches, the ultimate sampler of designs I've used in my own quilts and to teach others. Every fabric is quilted with a different design.

I used Presencia's 50 wt. cotton thread--color #106 to quilt a very organic version of Dianeshiko I learned from Diane Gaudynski herself. She uses silk thread and wool batting to show off her perfect form and technique that is so incredibly lovely.

Mine is more funky to say the least! I drew a 1/2" grid in this space and quilted continuous curves on either side of the line, working vertically and finishing with the horizontal lines. I use the ditch seam line to travel to any unfinished lines to complete the quilting.

When it's completed, it looks like cathedral windows, little pumpkin seeds, a nice background fill design.

The blue patches featured some sort of feather I quilted a shell template with pebbles added to fill the background.

I took a basic template outline and redesigned it for continuous quilting...filled in the detail to make a modern flower design and added some additional echoing. Really like this one!

Copyright ©2013, Sharon Baggs

Friday, May 24, 2013

Matchstick Quilting

Matchstick quilting is a simple, no-mark free form design that is beginner friendly and quick to quilt. (Click on the photo for a closer view). 

Stitching horizontal lines of varying widths gives a nice surface texture to this orange batik that looks like a sunset sky.

Top Thread: Superior Thread's King Tut (Color 912--St. George)
Bobbin Thread: Isacord (Color: Wine)

Matchstick quilting can be completed using a walking foot. The walking foot provides some control with the feed dogs up. The foot has openings on either side that serve as a guide to see previously quilted lines.

Finish a line of quilting by stopping the needle in the "ditch"--the sewn seam joining two pieces of fabric.

Pivot and stitch in the ditch for 2-5 stitches, depending on the spacing width desired for each line.

With needle down in the ditch, pivot the needle and reposition the quilt to begin another line of quilting.

Continue in this manner, varying the width of the lines. Sometimes it's easier to backstitch in the ditch rather than turn the quilt around completely.

The final line here is quilted about 1/8" away from the outside seam (the ditch). Take a few small stitches at the end and leave thread ends to knot off and bury in the batting.

Copyright ©2013, Sharon Baggs

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Quilt Market meets Portlandia by carrie bloomston

Quilt Market: It's a trade show for shop owners but includes teachers, designers, and the creative crew who are trying to find their place in this world. Spring market rotates to 5 different cities so 2008 was the last time all were gathered in my hometown.

The event kicks off with Schoolhouse...8 hours of 15 short classes featuring current trends in the market. So much has, online shops, modern, youthful designers barely out of high school and the entire state of Utah presenting.

There's no logical strategy for visiting all 975 booths, but I knew to sprint to Gen Q Mag's booth to claim a free awesome charm pack of Moda's Simply Style by Vanessa Christenson (modern, youthful designer...also from Utah).

I stopped by the booths of those I saw at Schoolhouse, including this girl:

Amanda Murphy, author of Modern Holiday (C&T Publishing)...a graphic designer who breathes fresh energy into the look of modern/tradition. Definitely knows her stuff about visually aesthetic pleasures to sew up and I bet she got good grades in school too.
Because my last name is Baggs, people wonder whether I make bags for a living. I do not, but Nicole Mallalieu of You Sew Girl!  taught me to avoid a "saggy" bottom in a bag by inserting template plastic into the base. That's the trick and it really makes a good bag design into something great! That and a bit o' classy hardware like O-rings set them apart from the rest.

This Australian designer offers computer-aided drafted (CAD) full-size heavier paper patterns and industry construction tips with helpful, descriptive photos. Get that information into your head when you see her patterns are priced a bit higher to simply cover her production costs on another continent. Bags, hats, dresses, skirts--her finished work is the most professional I have seen. Plus she's super friendly, patient, and happy to answer how-to questions.

Finally, I got to meet local designer, Violet Craft That's her real name, not her stage name. She has a marvelous fabric line "Waterfront Park" by Michael Miller featuring a print of the Portland bridges so shops can take a bit of the city home with them.

Yesterday ended with Hannah's performance at Curious Comedy Theatre's Friday Night Fights We called the phone book and here's who showed up to support our girl and the six other cool teenagers who punished another team of wise-cracking adults to WIN AGAIN!

A great hour of entertainment for only 5 bucks. Catch their next show on Friday, June 7 at 10 p.m.

Copyright ©2013, Sharon Baggs