Saturday, January 24, 2015

"Morning in the Moor" - Project Quilting Challenge 2

Challenge 2 on Project Quilting had the theme Sunrise/Sunset and I admit that I needed a good two days to actually decide what I wanted to do for it, because I was unsure wether I should go with a sunset or a sunrise, the latter won in the end, after several hours of googling. Also, I have a huge love for the cloud fabrics of the Danscapes collection and it just happened, that I still had a piece of clouds with sunrise colours left in my stash ;)

So, here it is, my entry for challenge number two, which I called "Morning in the Moor"

First I want to explain why I called it that. I live in the very north of Germany in midths of marsh land and close to a moor where we always walk our dog. The mornings around fall and also this time of year are foggy, you often see crows flying and there are cattails here and there in the small water channels by the fields, so this picture pretty much represents home for me. 

As a sunrise gradually builds up as the sun goes higher on the sky, I started with the deep reds at the bottom and worked my way up into oranges and pinks, that lead up to the clouds in the blue sky, that is still etched with hints of pink and yellow.

This piece is a wall-hanging again, measures 12" x 19" and is backed with cardboard, which I actually sewed on. But I have an old machine that was used for industrial purposes and it doesn't budge on 1/8" thick cardboard. The actual project was sketched onto paper at first, then I went through my stash for matching fabrics and started to cut out the pieces.

I then used double-sided fusible web to iron these pieces onto a thin muslin. I admit that I use the cheapest Ikea cotton fabric that I have for this purpose, but it works best. I might add that I starched the heck out of all fabrics to make them smooth and sturdy before I started to apply them to my muslin fabric, though. 

After that I added one layer of batting and another simple layer of muslin as backing and started to secure my fused pieces by adding decorative stitches in thread that was matching the fabrics by colour. Burying all the threads took some time, but it was well worth it, I really like the look those stitches created. 

At this point I was unsure if I should go with my original plan to add silhouettes of birds and cattails, but I felt that without anything added to it, the project would've come out looking a bit boring. I actually rehearsed several different layouts in photoshop, then printed one out and cut out the details to then draw them on with my Frixion pen. 

The next part was something I never tried before. I was at a bit of a loss as to how to "fill in" my drawings and I didn't want to iron on more tiny parts with black fabric, as that would've meant more stitching onto those small parts and hey, the edges fray really easy even on bigger pieces. 
I started googling 'machine embroider on a domestic machine', as that is all that I own and let's be honest, you don't buy a fancy embroidery machine for one challenge of Project Quilting ;)

I found several tutorials on Youtube that described it for beginners. It's basically nothing different than doing free-motion-quilting (which I suck at honestly), you use your free-motion foot, lower your feed dogs, and you need a topstitch or embroidery needle since those have a bigger hole in them and the thread runs through easier. After work I went to the nearest store that sells machine needles and got them, then went straight to working on a test piece. It looked a bit wonky at first, but after a few tries I had worked it out and could start on my actual embroidery.

And that is the story of how I created "Morning in the Moor".

I hope everyone loves this one as much as the last! And speaking of... massive THANKS to everyone who voted for me "Four Seasons" wall-hanging in challenge number 1! 

I received 146 votes in the Viewers Choice voting and won first place! Woohoo! Not a bad start for the first challenge, so I definitely have high goals now and can't wait to receive the Aurifil thread that was up for a price for this category. Thanks so much everyone!! :)

Once again, all of the fabrics used were from my stash, so I'm still firmly sticking to the SewMyStash2015 challenge as well! 

See you with the next challenge!
xx Lia


  1. O.M.G!!! Julia- you amaze me!!! This is absolutely PERFECT, once again!!! I will be voting & sharing the heck out of this one, too!

  2. such another beautiful job! Thank you so much for sharing your story - on how this game to be!

  3. Lia - your quilt is stunning and you did a great job. I had a look at all of the entries and yours really stands out! Needless to say I voted for you! Good luck!

  4. I love that you took the time to explain your process and a gutsy process at that which paid off beautifully! Well done!!!

  5. What a stunning piece. I didn't realise when I saw it first on IG that the bull-rushes and birds were completely stitched, they really do look amazing. Best of luck in the challenge.

  6. This came out beautifully. Congratulations on another beautiful finish.


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