Continuous Tarts Quilting

Tarts: Bottom Center (Latte glass and silverware)
Tarts: Bottom Center (Latte glass and silverware)

As you can see from other posts I am not continuously quilting on the Tarts, but it is a project I try to work on every day.

I was pretty excited about how the frame went after my first post, so I worked quite a bit on it. The bloom, however, is off the rose, as mentioned in my last post. Still, I am soldiering on.

Tarts: Latte glass quilting
Tarts: Latte glass quilting

My latest efforts are some smallish blocks on the center bottom, a latte glass and some silverware. I thought I could do some straight-line curves around the latte glass. I wasn’t happy with it and I ripped it out and went back to straight-line quilting the background.

I like dense quilting and I like my quilts flat so straight lines are working best for me.

Tarts Then and Now

I am becoming slightly obsessed with this project. I wonder if I need to worry about how often I am using the word obsession or its derivatives lately?

The first record I have of the Tarts is from 2003. That is a few years before I started this blog, so the details are lost in the mists of time or hidden in my journal from that time. I had a 6 year old, so who knows what I wrote down?

You can see that some of the elements stayed, but some are gone. If I find those elements, I can bring them to the guild for the orphan blocks donation project.

More Tarts Quilting

I am done with the novelty of quilting. The bloom is off the rose.

Tarts: Pink corner background quilted
Tarts: Pink corner background quilted

Still I am quilting. It took me all day to quilt one corner background of the Tarts. The quilting looks good, but it was tedious and took a long time. No, I am not doing free motion quilting; I am doing straight-line quilting, which is the type of quilting I can sew successfully and, thus, be happy with.

Am I tempted to rip out the quilting and take it to Colleen?

Yes.

I am going to hang in there. I have made so much progress after years of no progress that it would be stupid to rip it out. Still, I am tempted. Quilting is terrible.

The Tarts Return…Yet Again

The Tarts Come to Tea - July 2022
The Tarts Come to Tea – July 2022

Yes, after YEARS of having this project on my to do list, I have pulled it out of the project box and started to finish the quilting. First, I am obsessed at the moment with crossing things off my to do list. Frankly, I am sick of looking at the same items month after month. Second, I need the project box for something else.

Now that you are back in your chair a second time after being gobsmacked on to the floor, you read that right. I am machine quilting a real quilt. It isn’t a king sized quilt or anything, but it is also not fabric for a bag or a tablerunner. It is real quilting on a quilt.

Tarts: quilting center right
Tarts: quilting center right

I started working on it last Friday. I started with the frame of one of the blocks. I thought some straight line quilting would get be back in the groove.

The good thing about that red frame is that the quilting would not show if I used red thread.

You are probably remembering the Cha Cha Cha table runner. Yes, I quilted that myself, as well as some fabric for bags this year, so it’s not like it has been 20 years since I actually quilted anything. It has been about 10 years since I worked on this project. Recently, I have decided that UFOs are a bad thing for me and I want to eradicate them, as much as possible from my workroom.

I had the box of thread I used for the other, already quilted Tarts blocks, so I picked out the red (Maderia rayon I used to use for embroidery) and got busy.

Tarts: quilting finished center right
Tarts: quilting finished center right

I was pretty pleased with how the process worked. I was a little nervous about doing the frame before the center, but it ended up all working out.

I was particularly pleased that the quilting made the frame flat. It seemed really puffy when I started (first photo, above). I know that I need to work from the center out and I am doing that, mostly. I started with the frame, because I didn’t want the quilting to show while I worked out stitch length, etc.

Tarts: quilted frame detail (center right)
Tarts: quilted frame detail (center right)

I think the stitching looks ok. It is not Colleen’s stitching, but it is not terrible either.

Onward. Maybe I’ll finally finish this quilt, but one thing at a time.

Thinking about Machine Quilting

Tarts Come to Tea Teapot
Tarts Come to Tea Teapot

Yesterday, I taught a class on machine applique. In the course of the discussion, I brought out Down the Drain to show different examples of satin stitching. I also showed The Tarts Come to Tea.

This brought up the idea of quilting, which I tried to gloss over, but my intelligent students wanted to know why they had never seen the Tarts and I had to admit that I hadn’t completed the quilting.

I felt silly admitting that the quilt was partially quilted and languishing in a project box. Will I get back to it? Maybe. They didn’t think it was weird or out of date looking, so it might be time to get back to the quilting. I quilted Down the Drain and survived the process, so perhaps it is time to get back to it?

#TBT: Early Tarts

I don’t often have something to show for Throwback Thursday. I received a box back from ScanCafe and I found an early photo of the Tarts Come to Tea. It is amazing to see how it has progressed and to realized that the quilt is still in process. Sigh.

Early Tarts Come to Tea
Early Tarts Come to Tea

I started this quilt pretty soon after TFQ and I made She Had to Have Her Latte and I was still thinking that novelty fabrics would be a good idea.

Those novelty fabrics were jettisoned at some point, but some of the elements stayed. Even some of the placement basically, stayed.

I also started out using much darker fabrics.

I do still have that vase, which I like and may make into another applique type quilt.

I am not sure how I feel about these improvisational pieces now. Clearly, I am having trouble finishing the Tarts, despite keeping it on the list.

Cupcake Block

Cupcake Block for Mark
Cupcake Block for Mark

Lynn of Country Crossroads Quilt Shop started a project to make a quilt for Mark Lipinski. The theme was cupcakes and the block to the left is the one I made for him. Lynn said that he likes pink, so pink it was. I had the pink dot out for the Swoon #6 block, so I used it for the background. The cupcake pattern is from the Tarts Come to Tea. I just made the cake part a bit taller so it looked robust.

Lynn must be a woman to be reckoned with, because I got a photo of the quilt and someone delivered the quilt to Mark in time for his birthday.

Mark Lipiniski Cupcake Quilt
Mark Lipiniski Cupcake Quilt

I was really thrilled to get a photo of the quilt from Lynn.It is a wonderful quilt. There is a block in the upper left corner that has the Facebook “Like” thumbs-up symbol. There is a really a lot of nice work in this piece.

Captain Cupcake
Captain Cupcake

Someone also made him a very cute chef’s hat. I saw a photo of Mark wearing the hat on Linda Lum deBono’s Facebook page.

Just fun.

Tarts Return

Tarts quilting Detail
Tarts quilting Detail

I rearranged my workroom yesterday and quilted on the Tarts. The quilt was calling from where it was neatly hung in the closet and begging to be worked on. Since I had no good excuse NOT to work on it, I pulled it out and quilted some blocks. I did lots of straight line quilting, because the tension on my machine needs to be adjusted. I also didn’t feel like taking the time practice.

I set a goal of doing the yellow section that I had to pick out last Fall. I surpassed that modest goal by quilting that small section, the section next to it, a cup and a piece of pie. I am pleased.

Spending Quality Time with Tarts

I got a bug in my ear a week or so ago to quilt the Tarts. They weren’t hanging in the closet quilting themselves and the label does say 2010. I hauled them out, set up the table and quilted away. I did mostly straight line quilting the background of the 3 cups blocks. I also quilted (mostly) the to go cup. I need a differented colored thread to finish that one.

FMQ Fail
FMQ Fail

Then I got cocky, practiced my free motion skills and did one small strip in free motion circles. Big time fail. I couldn’t get the tension quite right. Yes, I was using the same thread in both the bobbin and the top (different colors, but same thread. Yes, I matched my speed of moving the quilt with the speed of the machine. Fail. The bobbin thread ceased to show through the front, because all of the top thread went through to the back. The yellow you can sort of see in the photo is the top thread. Unsewing is required.

The good part is that I am back in the saddle on this project and there is hope that I will get it done in 2010.

Hideous Tarts

Tarts Come to Tea, April 2010
Tarts Come to Tea, April 2010

Ta Da!

The Tarts are ready to quilt. Don’t have a heart attack when you see the grey border. I know it is ugly fabric that does not coordinate with the bright cheerfulness of the rest of the quilt. It is a quilting border and will be removed or cut off after the quilting is done.

I worked on the last bit of applique’ over the weekend and sewed on the quilting border. Except for the basting, the Tarts are ready to quilt. I didn’t realize that this piece was acting like a creativity dam. It was stopping up my creative problem solving for other projects. As soon as I did the applique’ and put the border on, I felt like I could do anything. It was an awesome feeling.

Tea Kettle with Stars
Tea Kettle with Stars

I tried a number of slight variations in location for the stars, for about 2 minutes, and then I just appliqued them on. Mentally, I am done with the project and hope I can make it through the quilting.

Tea Kettle with Stars, detail
Tea Kettle with Stars, detail

I am pleased with the way the block looks.

Lesson: stop thinking and just do it!

More Tarts

I finally buckled down this past weekend and got some of my ‘rote’ sewing out of the way. Rote sewing is stuff like making backs, putting on bindings, etc. I usually consider it to be stuff that I have to do at the machine, but isn’t very creative. I often have a hard time getting started on it. The good thing about rote sewing is that it usually goes fast once I buckle down and I can often cross a lot of tasks off my list after a rote sewing weekend.

Fluttering Hearts Test
Fluttering Hearts Test

This time I worked on backs and tossed the Fluttering Hearts into the mix. Above you can me trying out the Fluttering Hearts. I have had 3 on the piece on my design wall since November or December. I really wanted some at the top and decided that Saturday would be  good day to try it out.

Fluttering Hearts Appliqued
Fluttering Hearts Appliqued

I spent a lot of time sewing carefully around the hearts with the satin stitch. I am out of the thin Maderia embroidery thread so I used a spool of Robison-Anton that seemed relatively new. I love the sheen of that thread. It is also thick like quilting thread, so the satin stitch looks pretty full on the hearts.

Tarts with Fluttering Hearts
Tarts with Fluttering Hearts

Above is the Tarts with the Fluttering Hearts appliqued. I thought I would be done, but I am thinking that I need to applique’ something to the tea kettle (lower left), some steam or stars to the Chocolate Pot, like I showed in this post.

I think I might be getting too mired in the layering thing that is going on in my head. I have to remember that I put the label on the back and it says I finished this quilt in 2010, so I have to finish it!

Tarts Back
Tarts Back

Here is the Tarts back, another bit of rote sewing from the past weekend. It went together really fast! I was shocked. I guess I really do need to finish this quilt!

Give me your opinions about more bits of applique’ of it you think I should just wait to embellish with buttons and beads and embroidery.

Tarts Again

The Big Drip
The Big Drip

Yes, I am obsessing. This is the last time I will force you to read my obsessive, compulsive rantings on, what I am now calling, The Big Drip. The reason? The Big Drip is done. It is glued and appliqued down for eternity. Or at least until the glue from the fusible rots away and the fabric underneath is no longer viable.

I am pretty pleased with how it came out and will be even more pleased when I am at the point where I can embroider a stem on the cherry. Stay tuned for that drama! 😉

Fluttering Hearts
Fluttering Hearts

After successfully appliqueing The Big Drip to the piece, I had the idea that, perhaps, I should add some other little, appliqued embellishments to some of the other blocks.

I have to admit that the big grey teapot needs some spicing up. I cut out, and am trying, these little hearts. They do add a bit of a spark and draw the eye up towards that corner of the quilt, which is good. I don’t want the piece to look like I copied Mary Engelbreit. I also want it to be fun and not cutesy. Let me know what you think.

Tarts Cream Drips

Tarts, Small Drip
Tarts, Small Drip

This is the piece of pie and whipped cream, which you have seen four dozen times. I am forced to continue to show it to you until you scream for mercy. Only because you asked for it. 😉

Okay! Okay! I am not so mean. This is actually a slightly larger drip than before. I took your advice and decided to make the drip a little larger. I don’t think it is large enough here. When I stand back, it still looks like a speck. I don’t want people to think I made a big boo-boo on the applique’.

Tarts, Big Drip
Tarts, Big Drip

Here is the big drip. It looks like something! I used the same shape; just made it a bit bigger. I like it and it will probably be sewed down this weekend.

Sewing it down would be very nice, because then I can get it off of my design wall and put something else up.

Oh. The back. I still have to make the back. Sigh.

Whipped Cream Drama

I know you thought I forgot about the Tarts. Or, perhaps, you thought I abandoned the piece for another 3 years?

Oh ye of little faith!

Non quilt parts of my life have been busier than usual. I have still taken the time to diligently test your ideas for the whipped cream on the second piece of pie after I posted some thoughts in a previous blog post. I thought it would be easy and fast. HA! When will I ever learn?

Another issue is that the 9K is back in the shop. It is fixed now, but I won’t be able to pick it up (80+ mile round trip) until Friday since I am going out of town on Tuesday and the shop is closed on Monday. I tested an approximation of a satin stitch on the Jem. The Jem is a great machine, but the satin stitch it makes doesn’t compare to the 9K’s satin stitch. I need to wait until the 9K returns from his/her vacation. I’ll get everything ready, however.

Below are the candidates:

Whipped Cream #3
Whipped Cream #3

I liked this one, but didn’t think it was enough. I thought it needed more of something. Someone mentioned a drip in a comment, so I started working on that.

Whipped Cream #4
Whipped Cream #4

The drip above is too small. I want it to stand out a bit more against the plate.

Whipped Cream Test #5
Whipped Cream Test #5

The one above is pretty good in terms of having more than just an element on the top. However, the indentation in the top of the dripped whipped cream on the plate looks strange. It may be realistic, but it doesn’t look fun or interesting.

Whipped Cream #6
Whipped Cream #6

The one above is the option I have decided to use. I like the more engaged shape of the drip. I don’t think that is how drips really look, but this quilt isn’t reality.

As you can see, I take Lorraine Torrence’s admonishment to “make visual decisions visually” to heart.

Janome Clear View Quilting Foot and Guide Set

I saw this in an email from Janome yesterday and was already drooling about he possibilities. I decided to quilt the Tarts Come to Tea myself, so I think this would come in handy. I am going to put it on my Christmas list!

One of the things I like about it is that it gives the sewist cornering markings. That might make me better at getting even lines when I have to turn.

I’d love to know your thoughts if you have used this!

Janome Clear View Quilting Foot
Janome Clear View Quilting Foot

Clipped from www.janome.com
Attach and remove the guides as needed to suit your task at hand- gives you three feet in one- 1/4 Inch Foot, Ditch Quilting and Clear foot.  Markings indicate 1/8 inch and 1/4 inch from center needle drop position with handy cornering markings for both 1/8 and 1/4 inch seams.  Oval-shaped needle hole allows needle adjustment for scant 1/4 inch piecing (computer models only).  Fits virtually all Janome top-loading models.  Please see your authorized Janome dealer for more information.