Tag Archives: aurifil

Word of the Year – Joy

My daughter signed me up for Ali Edwards’ One Little Word class (She did ask if I would like to try it first.).  My daughter is a creative, prolific scrapbooker, and I love what she does.  She has played with paper ever since she was a tiny tot.  I, however, am not a scrapbooker.  But she assures me that I don’t have to be to enjoy this class.

In fact, she bought a journal for me instead of a binder.  I haven’t written a word in it, yet, but I love it! 

Joy Journal 2015

I will write in it soon.

As you can see from the cover of the journal, I have chosen the word ‘Joy’ for my word this year.  I’ve had some tough times the past few years and I’ve lost my ‘muchness’.

I understand that joy is an attitude; a choice.  But it is much more than that, and I shall be exploring it this year.  I hope to be a better person by the end of this year.

I splurged and bought a reminder to wear everyday.

Joy Bracelet

I love this cuff bracelet!  It is hand made, well made, and I supported the maker in my small way. 

I had decided that I wanted a pillow, and then I saw the  2015 Free Motion Quilting Challenge.  For January, there are three options to choose from.  I’ve chosen a variation of Option #3.

I altered a design found in my Electric Quilt program and traced it onto my fabric with a blue water soluble marker:

Joy Pillow

Joy Pillow

I drew quilting ideas onto my paper pattern (it got a lot messier later):

Joy Pillow

Using water soluble thread, I sewed two layers of batting underneath the letters and the surrounding heart shape.  After sewing, I cut away the excess batting.

Joy Pillow

Joy Pillow

I chose a 12 weight orange Aurifil thread to outline the letters and heart shapes.

Joy Pillow

The filler was sewn with a 50 weight cream Aurifil thread.

Joy Pillow

All of the stitching is done with free motion.

Joy Pillow

I need a larger pillow form to fill out the pillow cover better.  It is on my shopping list.

Joy Pillow

My happy place, the sewing studio, is lime green and white.  Orange poppies and lime green (functioning as the zipper cover) make me smile.  This pillow will fit right in!

Joy Pillow

Be Mine – Finished


I stayed the course; I stayed focused and it is finished!



This was a very good project for me to sew to learn how to use the new sewing machine.  I only had one temper tantrum.

I wanted to stitch the binding on completely by machine (a first for me…I always hand stitch it to the back), and I was looking for the mirror image of a blind hem stitch, or something similar.

I had trouble mirror imaging any stitch, let alone a blind hem stitch (which cannot be done on this machine).  Thus…major meltdown.  Ha, ha!

But I persevered and I know this machine much better now.  Our relationship is improving…so much so, that I just may give her a name soon.  My beloved Bernina’s name is Bertha (for those inquiring minds).

Thank you to the Janome Yahoo Group and their files!

Also, for those inquiring minds, this wall hanging was sewn, and quilted, with Wonderfil Invisifil and Aurifil 50 weight.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
 Update:  Pattern designed by Cynthia Tomaszewski and published in ‘Tea in the Garden – Quilts for a Summer Afternoon’ by Martingale.

Free Motion Machine Quilting Challenge – February

Month (lesson) 2 of SewCalGal’s Free Motion Quilt Challenge.  Feathers.  One of the best free motion quilters is the guest teacher this month, and she knows feathers!  I printed out Diane Gaudynski’s lesson and started sketching out feathers. 

Whooo boy, do I need to practice up!  I don’t want to use stencils…I want to master fun, funky and free feathers all by myself!

For some reason, sketching these feathers is very stressful for me, so I need to loosen up.  A cup of tea, and a search for chocolate is in order.

Yeah, I know.  Desperate times.  It’s all I could find in the house.  Don’t tell Hubby!  

My first feather.  I had problems with skipped stitches.  I tried everything…changing needles, thread, tension, fabric.  I came to the conclusion that my machine may be having an issue.  I am determined.  I end up with a tea-dyed muslin scrap, Aurifil 50wt in the bobbin, WonderFil Tutti 50 wt. in the top, a Schmetz 10/70 needle, and a tension of 1-2.

I also chose to use separate colors in the top and bobbin, so I could really see tension issues.  In spite of skipped stitches, the tension actually looks great.

The back (clicking on any of the photos will get you a larger photo):

The next feather was done at a later time and shows improvement.  I was more relaxed and actually enjoying it.

However, my photos stink!  Sorry!

This time I’m using Mettler 60wt. in the top and Bottom Line in the bobbin (I like this combination).  Muslim is the same and again I am using a Schmetz 10/70 jeans needle.  No problems with skipped stitches.

I kept chanting to myself…around the corner…around the corner…around the corner.  Diane pointed out that feathers were made by rounding a coin.  When I remembered that, my feathers looked better.

These feathers are stitched side-by-side, so I’ll have a sampler to refer to later.

I can do this!

Free Motion Quilt Challenge – January

I am taking the Free Motion Quilt Challenge over at SewCalGal’s blog in the hopes of honing my machine quilting skills (And do they ever need honing!).  I am excited about this challenge; SewCalGal is packed full of helpful tips and information.  She has also gone to the effort of procuring a terrific lineup of expert free motion quilting teachers.

January’s teacher is Frances Moore.  She has given us a leaf design to practice free motion quilting.  Her video can be found here.

And yes, I’m posting at the end of the month.  What can I say?  Better late than never…I’ve been busy…life in the way…dog ate my homework?

I divided a fat quarter into thirds to practice this design.

I think I am practicing hearts, not leaves.  LOL!

On the back, I like to write what needle size, tension, and thread I used for practice.  I don’t remember what I’ve done, so I keep my practice pieces for reference.  I’m the only one with this problem, right?

Leaves (in my case, hearts) with a spiral twist.  Cute!  They are more exciting to me; they dance!  I do need  to pay attention…there is one heart without a spiral in it (don’t strain your eyes…I didn’t capture it in the close-up).

The back looks better here!

Leaves on a stem.  These could be lots of fun; I need to practice with these more, and change the shape.  My brain wanted to make fat leaves, but they would look cool if I elongated them.

The back looks good here too.

I would’ve tried a size 16 needle (just for reference) but didn’t have one.  Also, I am using Schmetz denim needles (for the curious need-to-know).  After looking at the back, I much prefer WonderFil InvisiFil 100wt. or Aurifil 50wt. over Bottom Line with the heavy 30wt. YLI.