We like to keep current with trends and learning new skills, so when we picked up on ‘big stitch’ quilting at the AQS Charlotte show, studio time was needed. Here’s a quick 14″ x 18″ pillow using the Quilt Blocks French Cottage Block #7.
To test some stitching, the block was made and 2″ added to the top and bottom, then 4″ to the sides. The batting is Hobbs Polydown. It has more loft than I would use for machine quilting, but the the perle cottons and 6-stand floss slipped through the siliconized fibers easily.
The Setting Kit includes the designers suggestions for quilting. The designs were marked with pencil.
The block and batting were layered with a muslin backing, pinned, and stitched in the ditch around some of the pieces. The polyester batting was poofy, so I used the even-feed foot and lengthened the stitch. Much better. With everything stablized, let’s quilt!
In the center square, the grid is stitched in DMC floss green #3347. Using all 6 strands, I just couldn’t get the needle threaded! Even with a fresh cut, brighter light, white background, folding the thread, wetting it, twisting it, putting on stronger reading glasses…. Plan B – a bigger needle. A Chenille needle size 24 – large eye, sharp point, and less than 1 1/2″ is my secret weapon.
The dark red swirls and lines are Finca Presencia No. 16 stitched with an Embroidery size 8. This perle cotton is so nice I couldn’t stop stitching, so added some extra lines in the square. More stitching -the vine & leaf on the sides are 3 strands of floss.
Bottom line – I’m looking forward to big-stitch quilting a larger quilt. The polyester batting requires some stitching in the ditch, but then you’re free to big stitch anywhere.