Flannel Plaid is “Rad”

The weather is getting cooler, and those flannel PJ’s, quilts and throws are looking pretty cozy about now. Even in the south there are times when flannel feels awfully good. Flannel backing on a cotton top quilt makes your quilt feel so nice and snugly when curled up on a couch with hot chocolate and a good book.

Flannel needs special handling and if you don’t know these things, a beautiful quilt, that you put a lot of work, heart, and soul into, can end up looking awful over time. The most important part of working with Flannel is the prep work. It’s vital to not only pre-wash, but also machine dry and starch, because Flannel shrinks significantly. Continue reading “Flannel Plaid is “Rad””

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To Hoop or Not To Hoop, That is the Question?

Hooping can be a mystery to a lot of “newbie” embroiderers and for some old timers who maybe don’t know some of the new techniques. It all really depends on what you are getting ready to embroider. The consensus is that hooping your product is always the best way to have a design turn out with little or no puckering. Sometimes you can’t.

Decisions are made depending on whether the product will get what they call Hoop Burn. (a ring left from the hoop crushing the nap down)

If you are going to embroider a  flat or waffle kitchen towel  hooping is your best bet. You can use a tearaway stabilizer with 505 spray or Floriani Perfect Stick. For a Red-work style design using Floriani Wet n Gone Tacky wash away type works nicely. Continue reading “To Hoop or Not To Hoop, That is the Question?”

The History of Quilts

donnas-star-1Quilts have been around for a long time but they started out as a necessity. They were made of old clothing, ragged blankets, or whatever fabric the pioneers could find.  I guess you could call it, early recycling. If they were wealthy enough or lucky enough to get hold of some nice fabric then those quilts turned into beautiful artistic treasures that were  handed down through the generations. All the piecing and quilting was done by hand and could take years to make depending on the designs. These quilts were made of many different blocks or one or two of the same blocks

The “blocks” as they are called all had specific names and for the most part those names have survived and not changed much since their inception.  There are always new ones that creative quilters come up with but your traditional  blocks are still the same, like the Churn Dash, Pinwheel,  Rail Fence, 9 Patch, the various stars and my favorite, the Log Cabin.

Quilts were made for different occasions. Like for a wedding, for a new baby, or just because! But during the Civil War, they were made to help direct escaping black slaves to the next safe house on the Underground Railroad. These quilts were made of one pattern. A pattern that would tell the slaves if that house would give refuge, or food, or a warning that slave catchers were nearby. I’ve heard some people say this isn’t true. Knowing quilters, I would like to believe these stories are true. Continue reading “The History of Quilts”