Sew Karen-ly Created...

If you have arrived here via a link (such as to a tutorial) click on "Sew Karen-ly Created" to return to the latest blog post. I invite you to my website to see a gallery of quilts and patterns available for purchase. Shown here is "To Be Where You Belong", presented to Sir Paul McCartney on his visit to Nova Scotia in 2009.
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Thursday, 9 April 2020

Threaducation

I am making the best of this lock-down time, and have decided to focus on learning as much as I can about thread, specifically Aurifil thread.  I've been a user for many years, and a dealer for over 6 years now.  But even with all the sewing I do, there are things I have not tried.  I am on a mission to learn it all!
Recently, I completed this top of blue and yellow 36 patch blocks, made from Island Batik's beautiful "Forget Me Not" collection.
This is the same fabric I used previously to make "Sweet Dreams", which I quilted using Aurifil 50 weight thread.
The 36 patch quilt went together quickly, each square finishing at 2" (I used 2-1/2" strips, so it was quick to cut.) Only two colours were used in each 12" block, alternating blue and yellow.  The gorgeous light and dark batiks make for a nice wash of colour when the blocks are set together. This shows 3 x 3 in the layout, which is a nice size for a baby quilt, but I ended up doing 4 x 5, for 48" x 60". It makes a nice couch sized quilt.
To quilt this, I decided to use 28 weight thread.  It's the next to heaviest weight that Aurifil makes (12 being heaviest), and is a nice, substantial thread. It comes on a grey spool.  I've used it a bit in the past for satin stitching, sewing on buttons, and for mending a rip in my son's backpack.
Only once before had I quilted with it, and that was for free motion stitching. Never had I used it for straight line quilting with my walking foot.

I chose 1135 light yellow and 2725 light Wedgewood blue.  In the bobbin, I used 40 weight in 1135 light yellow.  For the needle I used a size 14/90 Microtex, which has a sharp point.
Stitching in the ditch was completed first, and for that I used a finer 50 weight.
This was a perfect design for walking foot quilting, as no marking was required;  to work the diagonal cross-hatching, I just eyeballed the distance from corner to corner in the squares. Hobbs Poly-Down is the batting.
My top tension was reduced just a tiny bit, and my stitches were perfectly balanced top and bottom.

Here you can see the difference in the size of the thread, the yellow being the 28 weight and the lighter one in the ditch is the 50 weight.
It was hard to get decent pictures.  At this time of year in Nova Scotia, the grass is still brown and only a few brave crocuses are daring to pop their heads up.  Normally, I would take the quilt to a pretty location like the beach, or a park, but with our province-wide mandatory quarantine, we can be fined $1000. for going to these places. I'll wait.

I am extremely pleased with how the 28 weight thread performed, and will definitely be using it again. 
It's distinct without being overbearing, and I know it will hold up well.

I have a few colours in my store if you'd like to give it a try.  Among other things, Aurifil says the thread may be used for machine or hand embroidery, cross stitch,bobbin lace, couching, thread painting, mending, tatting, crochet, crewel, buttonholes, and serging.  Oh my - with 6 weights of thread, I will not soon run out of things to try!

4 comments:

  1. Love that yellow thread close up, what a great time to try all the options. Here in NZ, we are in total lockdown, no travel apart from essential service workers, and those of us who have a medical, doctor appt, or have to brave the queues and do grocery shopping. After struggling with laying curtain and linings on the floor ( I have lent my big cutting table to a friend who has her 2 work computers at home) I left that and am playing with applique place mats, 12, with a green batik shamrock on pale grey cotton. Hope that N.S. stays safe, as much as it can be, and all your family and friends cope with the self isolation and find some joy every day, the sky, the green shoots coming, white clouds, and friends all over.

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  2. Same here, Karen......we can be slapped with a $1000 fine for frivolity. Love youur quilting choice, it sets off those gorgeous fabrics beautifully!

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  3. I love that your post starts out with a confession about being a 'user' and a 'dealer'. 😊 The stitching on your quilt is beautifully precise, without a pucker in sight. Lovely!

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  4. It looks great. Thanks for the information. Our grass is icky brown as well. Hope you are well. Happy Easter.

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