Thursday, July 19, 2012

Memories in the Making- Photo Quilts

Putting Your Photos onto Fabric
I have been putting photos on fabric for over 15 years, starting with iron on transfer printer sheets, and now making my own printer sheets using BubbleJetSet2000 & BubbleJetSet Rinse.

this block was done with iron on transfer...note the discoloration (ivory looking) behind the red lettering.  The above quilt was an ongoing project for my Mom-in-law, but she became gravely ill, and my hubby asked if I could have the quilt to her by Mother's day...this was on Wednesday afternoon before Mother's day...So, I rushed to get pics of all 12 of her children put in the blocks (couldn't use BJSet2000 because the quilt was already assembled)..quilted it Thursday & sent it overnight on Friday morning...she got it Saturday morning.  This was done on my old Nustyle machine that would jump time if I sneezed!  I was scribbling left and right on this.  Mom passed a few weeks later.

The first quilt I made using photo transfer sheets made for inkjet printers. You know, the kind that you have to print the image onto the transfer sheet as a mirror image (or it will be backwards), then use your iron to adhere it to the fabric. The earlier types would crack and peel, so you couldn't quilt over them, or wash them, if needed...and watch out if you have to press a seam!

Later, some companies came out with some really good iron on transfer sheets, soft, rarely cracked..but still, you didn't want to quilt over/through them.

Then came BubbleJetSet....some raved about it, some didn't like it. Being on a very limited budget at that time, I just couldn't aford to try it...I needed something that I knew would be worth the money. I tried several "homemade" solutions...soaking in heavy fabric softener (didn't work), vinegar soaked fabric (didn't work), etc. Then in 2005, I found a bottle of BJSet at my local Joann Fabrics...just the one bottle...and someone had opened it (why?) had leaked a little...and I got it anyway. I was impressed. I followed the directions exactly, and the results were better than I had hoped...but not perfect.

Yes, that's my Mom-in-laws quilt top under these prints...but the pics are of a customer's family.  I'm posting this pic to show how I can take a faded photo (see the print on paper at the left..that's from the original I received), and then look at the pic on the right...same pic, I just used PaintShopPro to adjust the print and added a frame in PrintShopPro.  This family wanted their quilt to look old/antique.  I tea dyed the fabrics for their quilt, and here is a pic of the finished quilt:

This quilt is queen size, pictures were printed two to a sheet of printer fabric (BJSet2000 treated white muslin).  I charge by the sheet, not the picture...which saved this customer a good amount.

This is a close up of a block, shows the tea dyed fabrics (that pink and blue floral had a pure white background!) around the white muslin block (I got the rose motif from a coloring book!).
In 2006, I received a post from a lady who was supposed to give a class in using BJSet2000, and didn't. She had several bottles of the BJSet2000, and the Rinse...did I want them at her cost? Yes, I'd take them at the wholesale price! Here it is 2012, and I still have four of the six bottles.

Every photo shown above was done with fabric treated with BJSet or BJSet2000, except the label for my MIL's quilt.  These photos were all washed to make sure they wouldn't fade. 

I didn't notice a difference in the BJSet & BJSet2000, except the process to set the ink in the fabric (BJSet2000 didn't involve heat setting the colors).

Until next time...

But, I don't like Paper-Piecing!

Hi everyone! 
I've been busy lately, quilting (for others), setting up my "new to me" AD860, 12 needle embroidery machine (loving that!).
I've decided before I can start another project, either quilting or embroidery, I need to finish a few UFO's.
First up...a paper-pieced butterfly quilt that uses blocks I found at Quilter's Cache:

Simple enough, even though I don't like paper-piecing...and I did some for a block swap years ago...thought since this is the block I used to teach myself paper-piecing...and did them bass aackwards (had the paper on the bottom..blocks came out facing the oposite of what they should have.... I'd do 30 of them...maybe I'd like paper-piecing better.

Well, I had done a paper-pieced Double Wedding Ring quilt for the same reason (didn't make me like the process any better, and took over 3 years to complete).

King Size Thanksgiving Double Wedding Ring Quilt

Not perfect, but it fits on my bed and works for me.  I just wanted the blasted thing done, so played with random doodles for quilting. Those arcs took forever!

That done...I decided I needed a way to joing the pieces on the butterfly blocks...took way to long to line up the stitching lines while here is what I came up with:

This is two of the three sections I needed to join together..notice the corgugated plastic fabric board behind the sections.

I inserted a straight pin into the very corner of the orange wing section........

Then I inserted the same pin through the very corner of the blue wing section....

Next you insert the pin into the plastic fabric board, making sure the pin stays standing perfectly straight, then you push down gently on the wing sections to have them flat against the board....

Now, insert a pin through the stitching line on the orange wing section, through to the blue wing section...note that the pin is NOT on the stitching line of the blue wing section...I have to remove the pin and adjust the orange section to line up that pin....while doing this, make sure the first pin stays in the upright position & has not shifted.

Second try is perfectly lined up.  Now, I just need to secure the pins for sewing....

I first secured the bottom pin, leaving the original pin secured into the fabric board....then I secured that first pin for sewing.  Nope, don't have to make sure the tip is lined with that left line, as we aren't stitching that line.

Once we stitch the line the pins are on...we continue with the body of the butterfly, lining up and securing with pins the same as above.

And here is my finished block...well almost...needs to be trimmed and have the sashing added...but it's a butterfly & it points in the intended direction!

I don't know how the pros do these, but this is how my left brain told me to do

Can't wait to get this quilt done, and get on to the next one...a scrappy kinda crazy quilt.

Till later...
May the Good Lord Bless and Keep You in His Arms!
Campbell's, Quilting by Marge
(and now, embroidery too!)

Monday, November 29, 2010

My New Toys

New Toys, oh Joy!

Hubby bought me my Lizzie (TL18LS) last year...I've now added the Qbot (quilting robot) & am having so much fun learning to use Lizzie & her new bot.

I like freehand (shown here, freehand stars n loops), but see a lot of potential to expand my longarm quilting with the new Qbot.

I started a TinLizzie group on Yahoo:

It's become a very helpful group...we learn and help one another as we can. The TinLizzie18 company has a great website at:

The blog there is nice, so is their Facebook page, but our group is there 24/7...for help, for ideas, or just plain chatting about our machines.

Qbot has a website:

It's got a lot of information on it also.

I'm not real good at blogging, but am going to give this a try. So, hoping to add to my blog...maybe some ideas and freebies for both the TL & Qbot.
Have to see what I come up with!