Archive for the ‘Appliqué’ Category


Word Quilts

January 16, 2012

Last week I posted about free motion quilting around appliqués and this week I’d like to tell you about that quilt. My niece Kaitlin was married on December 30 and back in November my Mom and I had a shower for her. While planning the event Mom mentioned that it would be nice to hang a banner from the loft (we live in a log home and our bedroom overlooks the living room). I thought about printing one on paper, but then inspiration hit ….

I appliquéd each letter of Kaitlin and Marty’s names on a quilt block, using my Repliqué technique (from my second book: Snuggle & Learn Quilts for Kids), and hung them from a clothesline.

Then I made those blocks into a cuddly lap quilt as my wedding gift to them!

So here’s the beautiful new couple:

And here’s the quilt:

It was an enjoyable project and I even found matching flannel for the back!

Waukesha County Technical College – Quilting Classes

The new semester is just underway and I wanted to mention a few of my upcoming classes (Wendy is teaching some great classes too and all the information can be found at ; click on class search; scroll down and type “quilting” in the “Course Title/Subject” box and click on submit)

My “Open Lab” classes are a great place to get quilts finished while spending time with a wonderful group of quilters on Thursday afternoon. There are three sessions this semester and each one is four weeks long.

I’m also offering these one day workshops:

Fabric Silhouettes 

Saturday, Feb. 11

Learn to create silhouettes in fabric with this fun, free motion satin stitch technique. The class project will be a floral design, but we’ll also discuss how any picture – a grandchild at play, a friend’s profile, a cherished pet, etc. — could be created using this simple technique.

Irish Chain – Friday, Feb. 24

Create a charming, traditional double Irish Chain quilt, with simple strip piecing techniques, in plenty of time for St. Patrick’s Day!

Simply Dynamic – Saturday, March 10

By using just two different fabrics and a simple block, create an amazing variety of quilt designs. The only challenge is deciding which arrangement is your favorite! This course is designed for quilters of all levels.

Beyond Meandering Friday, April 13 Students will learn spirals, leaves, stars, snowflakes and so much more! Make quilting the quilt as much fun as stitching the top. Bring along a quilt top and we’ll brainstorm how to quilt it.


Snuggle and Learn Update

October 16, 2010

Just a quick note as I do my final packing for Ireland.

My current book: Snuggle & Learn Quilts for Kids is available through Martingale & Co. and can be purchased in quilt shops and on line. I have a trunk show of quilts from the book that has traveled for almost 2 years and is coming home for a rest. If you know of someone who owns a shop and would be interested in displaying the show, please pass along my blog address. There is no charge for hosting the show and a fun 4 step demonstration of my Replique technique is also included.



Satin Stitching Reply

June 10, 2010

Here are some of my best satin stitching tips:

1.  Machine set up: Set the machine for zig zag. The stitch width will be increased. The amount of increase depends on the look you want, but keep in mind that the wider the zig zag, the bigger the “bite” into the appliqué and the stronger it will be in a quilt that will get used and loved. The stitch length should be decreased to almost zero. The stitches should be close together, but not on top of each other.

2.  Match the thread color to the fabric which is being appliquéd. This way if the fabric shows between the stitches, it won’t be obvious (compare orange to black stitching in “K”). I feel that satin stitching puts a lot of holes in the fabric which can weaken it a bit. By matching the thread color the length can be relaxed a little and still yield good results. If you absolutely must use a contrasting thread you will need to shorten the stitch length.

3.   Use a stabilizer underneath the block. Without stabilizer the stitches tend to pull together and cause what’s called “tunneling” and the result is puckers. Many different stabilizers are available for purchase: wash away, tear away and heat away, just to name a few. I prefer scrap paper from my computer. It’s a good way to recycle misprints and costs nothing. When doing Repliqué the paper which the pattern is printed on is already in place and works great. Satin stitching puts so many holes so close together that paper removal is easy :-).


Satin Stitching

June 6, 2010

I’ve just returned from a very enjoyable weekend teaching at the first annual Sewing and Quilting Expo held at UW-Platteville. There was a nice variety of presenters, great vendors and entertaining evening programs. Next year’s event will be held June 10th & 11th and I highly recommend it! I wish I could post a picture of some of the fun, but alas, I forgot my camera :-(.

Snuggle & Learn Quilts for Kids and Replique Quilts

It’s time for my next “topic of the week” and, since I just did a Saturday lecture on Repliqué and it’s fresh in my mind – satin stitching seemed like a good choice. This machine stitch is made by increasing the stitch width and decreasing the stitch length. It can be used as a design element or to cover the raw edge of an appliqué. Of all the ways to appliqué, this is my favorite. So much so that I’ve written 2 books on the subject!

Do you like to do satin stitch  appliqué? What do you like/dislike about it? Are there questions you have on how to improve your technique? Do you have a tip to share?

I’d love to hear from you. I look forward to any comments and will address them as well as some of the questions I hear most often from students in my Thursday post!

PS Yesterday my son, Brad, graduated from Madison Media Institute with a degree in audio engineering. It was a proud moment. If you happen to know of any job leads in the area of sound production or recording, please let me know :-).