Thursday, April 1, 2010

Happy Birthday to us and a blog contest for you!



It's April and Great American Quilt Factory's 29th birthday, which means that we are going into our 30th year in business.! Hip, Hip, Hooray! I can still vividly remember sitting on the cement floor in a brand new vacant space, drinking a glass of wine and wondering how we were ever going to make it to the end of our first 5 year lease and here we are, many leases later.

Now the store is in it's 30th year which means I have been quilting for over 40 (I started at a very, very young age). Recently I have been researching different hand and machine applique techniques. I do quite a bit of machine applique but haven't done applique by hand for many, many years--my how it has changed! My method back then was to baste all the seam allowances under, baste the pieces into position, and then applique. Several years ago I tried a little bit of needle-turn and decided it wasn't my cup of tea. Just recently I took a class on the freezer paper method by Pearl Pereira-P3 Designs. I really enjoyed it, especially because after the applique was glued into place, it was totally portable. Next I'll be checking out the back-basting technique for hand applique and revisiting Beth Ferrier's machine technique.

Now, I'm asking for your advice. Please leave a comment telling me what your favorite method of applique is and why and/or your favorite applique tool. You will be entered into a drawing for a chance to win one of 3 autographed copies of our out-of-print book, Joy to the World--a collector's item and very difficult to find in perfect condition. You will have until Sunday, April 18th to comment and the 3 winners will be chosen at random on the 19th. Please make sure that you leave an e-mail so that you can be contacted.
For a quiltylicious way to celebrate your birthday or special occasion, this little quilt from the pattern Ode to a Cupcake, might be the perfect choice. In fact, I might use this pattern to experiment with my applique techniques making an applique sampler.


Quilting has changed so much in the last 40 years and I am so glad that it is still my passion! Next I'll be checking out hand piecing techniques and perhaps we'll hold another contest.

Best of luck to each of you and happy stitching,
Lynda

43 comments:

pigbook1 said...

I have never really tried applique, it's on the list of stuff to learn

Kathryn said...

I like the freezer paper method the best, although I wouldn't consider myself an expert. Happy birthday and may you have many more! Kathie L in Allentown

paula, the quilter said...

I am a "totally prepared" gal myself. Starch on the edges around either a freezer paper or templar template, iron and then glue. I *do* remove the template if it is freezer paper.

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

You are not kidding about quilting changing in the last 40 years. It has changed a lot in the last 25 years. When I learned to quilt we used scissors and templates. The new cutting tools have revolutionized quilting for me. I don't do a lot of applique, but would love to do more. I use the freezer paper and machine stitch the edges down. Thanks for such a wonderful way to celebrate your birthday :-)

Michele said...

I must be old school-- I like needleturn applique the best.

Margy said...

I love Beth's method. But then I like to get things done rather quickly to move on to the other "hundred" of projects. Happy Birthday; keep it up!

free indeed said...

I prefer the needle turn. I don't do it particularly well but it is passible. I like that I don't need any extra items beit freezer paper, starch or extra steps like ironing a crease etc. It a just start it technique. I'm pretty good at reverse applique, though I've only done it a few times. I like hand work in general.
Congrats on this milestone and many more!

Kari said...

Congrats on starting your 30th year! I want to try the starch method applique, but still stitching by machine. I try to do all I can on the machine. I can do hand work but it just takes sooooo loooong. :)

Deb said...

I recently learned how to hand applique. I've tried the freezer paper on top, template and starch, back basting and needleturn. With my limited experience, I think my preferred method is needleturn. I look forward to hearing about your hand piecing techniques. Love the cupcake pattern! Congratulations on 30 years!

Linda said...

I am afraid of applique. I took a sweatshirt applique class years ago and it was fuse and satin stitch the edges. So I wouldn't like that method so much on a quilt. Would love to win your book for some inspiration to give it a try again! Congrats on your birthday celebration!

stichnRN said...

my favorite is using freezer paper, but i spray starch my pieces after basting to the freezer paper. then i remove the freezer paper before i stitch it in place. no removing later, easy to peel off. it looks like needle turn, but easier.

Nancy said...

I haven't done very much applique but I have tried the fusible web, iron it down and then sew around the edges.

Nancyw303@msn.com

Richy Jr said...

I use freezer paper on the right side of the fabric and turn the edges as I go. When the piece is complete I just simply peel the paper off. I am a 24 year old male and have been needle turning for the last 9 years. This is the only method I like. I have tried lots of other ways but I just don't like them.

Terry said...

I have fallen in love with applique - Even finally finished the quilt from Jane Dumlar's Wildberry Vine class... I use heat resistant templar. I paint on the edge of the piece with starch then iron. It's a beautiful finish. I remove the templar then lightly glue baste the piece in place. The technique may be more time consuming than some but the results are absolutely beautiful.
Happy B-day! Terry S. in Parker

Lori H. said...

During a recent class, our teacher showed us needleturn applique. While my sister "hated that day", I loved it. I look forward to many new projects.

JANET said...

MY FAVORITE APPLIQUE IS THE FREEZER PAPER METHOD. IT TRULY IS VERY PORTABLE.i ALSO LIKE WOOL APPLIQUE. i JUST USE A STAPLER TO HOLD THE APPLIQUES IN PLACE .

Nancee said...

I am relatively new to quilting in general but I love machine stitching applique. The detail with the blanket stitch looks great to me and I probably would not get it done if I used the needle-turn technique. nancee932@msn.com

Debbie R. said...

I love love love needle turn applique. But in a need for speed I do use a light weight fusible interfacing to do machine applique.

Laurel said...

My vote goes to needleturn. No extra steps or materials. Pin in place for larger pieces, pick your starting point (on a straight edge) and get stitching. Sharp points and tight curves are dealt with on a one by one basis and you do what you have to to make them behave.

I am also a hand piecer/quilter, although I am beginning to move toward machine piecing for simple designs. Large projects are inviting me to consider attempting machine quilting. I haven't quite bitten that bullet yet, but maybe soon.
lkohl@mhtc.net

Miss Jean said...

I suppose it depends on what I'm doing. I love the look of the freezer paper method but sometimes fusing raw edge and machine blind stitching works just fine.

SheilaC said...

I am new to applique and I have been experimenting with fusing and machine stitching....

I don't think I have the patience for needle turn and hand stitching, but we will see what the future may bring :)

Thanks for the give away and Happy Birthday!

SheilaC

MrsMonreal said...

I love machine applique! I like the ability to outline my pieces in a variety of thread colors. I guess it goes back to my coloring book days where everything was supposed to be inside the line. I love getting to play around with decorative stitching to enhance applique and I like how fast I can get work done with a machine. Hand work seems to tedious.

Mary Rogers said...

I use wonder under on the traced applique pieces. After I cut the pieces out, I iron them on to a special cloth (you sell it at your store). I wait for the applique to cool and then I put in on the quilt top and it is ready to stitch. I learned that a single hole machine plate makes applique easir as nothing gets caught in the plait.

Carol said...

Fuse and machine stitch the edges. Easy, fast and fun.

CruiseToScrap said...

To get a project done especially with inside corners nothing beats fusible appliqué. I've tried needle turn but the shape doesn't always come out perfect. That's why I like freezer paper appliqué with a twist.

I put the waxy shiny side out away from the front of the appliqué and turn the edges over onto the waxy side and press with the edge of a dry iron. The wax holds it down with no need for starch or glue. Since the front isn't adhered down it's very easy to pull the paper out before the last few stitches are in place.

The most important thing I use for appliqué (other then the paper or fusible) is a toss up between good thread and a good needle.

Ellen said...

I like using WonderUnder or Steam-a-Seam 2 and then just fusing it down and machine sewing it down. "Instant gratification" as you can put it all down right away after you've cut the pieces out.

PS - Happy Birthay

Caro said...

Congratulations on your 29th anniversary! I love needleturn the best but I'm always up for trying a new method. Thanks for the opportunity to win one of your out of print books too! casands1@comcast.net

susan said...

Has it only been 29 years? It seems like I have loved your shop forever!
I LOVE all types of applique & have read about all of them. I have a friend who does beautiful needlturn & have a quilt from her.
However I usually machine applique. When I first started to quilt seriously I was working full-time & taking care of my aging mother. Time was of the essence. If you take your time and work carefully machine can be just as pretty as hand.

Lisa said...

I've tried all of it, but I think my needle turn applique turned out the best.

NancyNoBlogBlogs said...

I like to machine applique. I like the finished look and since I have some arthritis in my hands doing hand applique takes too long. Can't wait for the new book.

Evelyn said...

I recently learned reverse applique and found the technique very useful and the wood tool to roll the seams made it extra easy.
evelyn_007@hotmail.com

Evelyn said...

I recently learned reverse applique and found the technique very useful and the wood tool to roll the seams made it extra easy.
evelyn_007@hotmail.com

Evelyn said...

I recently learned reverse applique and found the technique very useful and the wood tool to roll the seams made it extra easy.
evelyn_007@hotmail.com

Susie said...

I love raw edge applique on the machine because it is so fast but by hand, I prefer the glue to the freezer paper templates. I find I can manipulate the shapes better with this method especially with the advent of the applique glues that are on the market

Carol Ann Waugh said...

Happy Birthday, my friends. I don't know what I would do without having your store nearby to visit, get inspired and purchase beautiful fabric! I look forward to celebrating your next milestone!

As an art quilter (no heirlooms for me!) I LOVE drawing on wonder under, cutting out the shape, ironing it onto my background and machine blanket stitching around the edges.

Karen said...

I just took a class from Nancy Odom and ironed fusible web on the back of fabric and then printed the patterns to be cut out on printer sized sheets of freezer paper. Much faster than drawing the patterns on the back of fusible web! Iron freezer paper on the prepared fabric, cut out, it's ready to fuse and blanket stitch down. Love the new freezer paper for printers! My new favorite tool!

Mary said...

Happy Birthday!
I've only done two types of applique. One was raw edge, but not a favorite. The other was an alphabet book for our grandson. Lots of work, fusible, press and satin stitched around. Really enjoyed that. Forgot the little bit of blanket stitch. Need to practice that more. Joy to you.
Mary

Sharon Metzger said...

Happy Birthday to You!!! My favorite applique method is fusible applique! I bought Pearl's (P3 Designs) Baltimore Halloween pattern and her applique DVD. I wanted to learn her method of hand applique. Great method but to slow for me. I like to trace-cut-iron and applique. I seem to finish a lot more projects this way. I am way to slow at hand applique. I love your books and patterns! Some of my favorite books are Hearts a Plenty, Home for the Harvest and the PS I love you series. Keep up the great work!! Thanks for sharing your Birthday presents with us!

the perpetual optimist said...

I love the way hand applique looks but I just don't have the patience to do it myself! I prefer to use freezer paper or a fusible interfacing and machine finishing. I think I do a "hack" job but it works for me. One day I will have to take a class.

Jen said...

I usually use the freezer paper method or needle turned method. Happy Birthday to you!!

Jen Ward

JoAnn in CO said...

Happy Birthday!! Fusible ... I have taken hand applique classes from multiple teachers and just can't get into it.

Anonymous said...

Needle Turn is the best and I just add a dot of glue to take it on the road if I think it is needed. I must have a hand work project to do in the car I guess I'm not a very good passenger. Plus when we go to the dr I need to fill the time.

Patricia said...

I love to do needle turning because 1)you can meditate or think things out 2)listen to an audio CD or tape 3)carry all the items you need in a small bag--grab and go 4)work on it anywhere and lastly, 5)you have something beautiful when finished. I have and do use the many other methods.
Congratulations on year 30. GAQF is my favorite--7 min. from daughter's home. Patti