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What I did today… or “It’s getting to look a lot like Christmas”… or what do I do with this panel I bought?

Posted on: 18 October 2010

As many of you know, I’ve been involved in one of the local Christmas Craft Fairs for a few years now.  I’m always on the lookout for new (to me, perhaps) and sometimes fun and/or funky items to make.

On a trip out of town in July, I stopped at a Quilt Shop, and saw some of their Christmas Fabric.  The one thing I have found when buying fabric, especially Christmas Fabric, try to buy all the coordinating pieces at the same time, because you’ll never find the “right” colour the following years!  I’m still learning that little nugget!  I particularly liked this one piece called “Holly Holliday” designed by Laurie Godin for Northcott. (And no, I didn’t buy any coordinating fabric at the same time).  The “Holly Holliday” is a panel with 10 different images, repeated randomly.

I had this idea, that I wanted to try out.  Have you ever bought a panel, or a piece of fabric with several panels, and when you got it home, thought “now what am I going to do with it”.  There are many options I am sure.  Use it as alternative blocks, with a block or two of your choice.  Frame them? Leave them in groups of 2, 3, or 4.  Add borders.

I wanted to do something a little different.  I got the inspiration from watching or seeing a design idea used for photographs.

Today I tinkered a little with my free motion quilting, on a piece that would not really work (unless I took off the red border, which I still could do), as the yardage was cut uneven, and the cut edge did not give me a 1/4″ border to sew too.

Finished free motion sample.

Close-up of Stipple free motion quilting.

So now that I have played with the stippling, and got myself back into some free motion quilting, it is time to put my plan in place.  Instead of binding these pieces (6½” x 7″), I decided to use the “pillow-case” technique.  In order to do that, I did not add a backing, and just quilting the panel piece to the batting.  My friend had given me some “Dream Puff” batting, and I thought I would use it.  The stippling would allow the image to “pop” up, away from the background.  I really liked the way it was looking.

I then cut the backing and placed on top of the finished panel.  Stitched all the way around, leaving an opening, so I can turn the piece inside out.   Now the tricky part was how I was going to  have the fabric attachments work, without having to force three of the panels come inside out.  After I had attached four of the attachments, and two of the panel pieces together, a brainstorm hit… why don’t I just “unpick” a small area, insert the attachment pieces, and then stitch them down.  Sooo much easier than trying to work 2 panels through one little hole.  And no, I didn’t think to take photos of the process.  I was in the groove, and wanted to see how this was going to finish up.

That being said, here is the finished piece.

I wasn’t sure if I wanted to add a tab for a holder, but then realized, I had already stitched the top piece.   Of course I could have unpicked and inserted the tabs, and then stitched closed.  But then how would someone hang it?  My DS#1 suggested a loop, similar to what you find in jackets to hang them up on a hook.  Again, how was I going to attach it to the back, but still have a clean finished look?  Then it dawned on me, why not use those plastic rings that are used for hanging small wall-hangings (or other things).  So tomorrow, I’ll have to see if I can find some.  That way, it can be hung on a picture hook, or thumb tack.

And just for something completely different.

I’ve been debating on sharing the next bit, but I am proud of it, and would do it again.  As many of you know, I served with the Canadian Navy, working with the Royal Canadian Sea Cadets.  And I have always liked the yellow rose.  I have always had a love of the sea (ocean), and of course all manner of boats.   I have been thinking about it for quite some time, and almost a year ago, I decided I knew what I wanted for my 45th birthday (which was earlier this year).   I wanted to get a tattoo.  I knew I wanted an anchor and a yellow rose.  You may remember the HMCS Quadra quilt I made, for a friend of ours, well, I contacted the friend, and asked her for a referral.  She referred Leroy to me.  What a great guy.  We worked together via email drafting out a design.   I was going to do it in March, but it didn’t happen.  So I made the appointment for June.  Do you recall the “Wilderness Downpour” quilt?  All in the same weekend!  DD#1 got to look at Wedding Dresses, and watch as her Mom got inked!  Now I know that tattoos are not for everyone, and 10 years ago, even 5, I would have said, not for me.

So here it is.  This photo is just moments after the work was finished, so it quite red, and has some leaking on it.  This is my outside  lower left leg.

So there you go!

-Alice

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11 Responses to "What I did today… or “It’s getting to look a lot like Christmas”… or what do I do with this panel I bought?"

I have several pieces of panel fabrics and am still wondering how to use them. What a great idea! Love the tat. Very pretty!

Liri

The wall-hanging looks great and the next one will go better, since you’re learning as you go! And I like your tattoo. 10 years ago I probably would have cringed like you, but the more I see, the more stories behind them I hear and the more likely I am to have my own one day!

Your wall hanging turned out very nicely! I have lots of panels I bought years ago that have been waiting for inspiration. Some I used three and made wall hangings as Christmas gifts. A couple I used in baby quilts and I just used three Halloween ones to make Trick or Treat bags for my grandkids. I’ve seen them used in hot pads and placemats, too. I have ideas to use some as table runners. Eventually they will all find a home.

I like your tatoo very much. I have considered getting one although my husband isn’t too excited about that idea. It is good you spent lots of time deciding on the design since it will be there forever. I like that it is one that has lots of meaning for you, too, that makes it really special! Enjoy!

Love the work you got done;) Looks very good;) I decided to get mine done after years of thinking about it. Tattoo work is much more accepted than it once was.
Happy Quilting!!

You have been busy. I love the idea of using the panel to create a wall hanging. Your tattoo is beautifully done and so meaningful. Good for you.

Sandy

You did a great job with your Christmas project. I get panels too then never know what to do with them.
Love your tatoo. Great work. Love how you made it your design. Did it hurt?

Glad to see another post from you! I too have some panels I’ve wondered about how to use; you’ve given me an idea! Thanks much!
As for the tatoo, it is very nice, but I’d never have the nerve to do it. Besides, I have enough black and blue marks all the time that would almost pass as tatoos! I keep banging my body into things like door facings and furniture! *giggle* —“Love”

Great use of a panel Alice! Machine stippling is fun and effective and looks great. 🙂

Good on you for getting a tattoo! I’ve never really been into them either, until I was at the dog pound one day and the girl helping me had 2 paw prints on the inside of her wrist. I thought then and there that if I ever got a tattoo, that would be what I’d go for!

Love the panel Alice. You did a wonderful job with the machine quilting.

Happy Belated Birthday. You celebrated it with Art. Just beautiful.
Debra

[…] an applique finish, I just wanted something different on the block I was making.  Working on the Christmas Panels, that I wrote about just recently.   My experiment didn’t work, and I continued on doing […]

Every sailor has a tattoo Alice and yours is a corker! I really liked what you did with that panel print. I too have succumbed to them (usually at the post Christmas sales) and then been stuck for ideas. Your Christmas cards will look pretty pinned to it. Cheers, Ann 🙂

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