Skills and Techniques

How Long Does It Take?

Just a fun little story to start today:  My cousin (who did not know how to sew at the time) came to me in November to make quilts for her immediate family for Christmas.  I asked her how many quilts are you thinking of doing?  She said, “About 10 twin size quilts.”  This with us spending only about 2 hours per week on them.

When I’m talking about my quilts, one of the first questions that is asked is:  “How long does it take for you to make a quilt?”

To help you all be a part of my world for a bit, I would like to share with you the time it takes to make a quilt and my thought process for how I come to the price I charge.

There are certain factors I consider when pricing a quilt:  cost of materials and labor.   I don’t want to dwell on labor charge with this line of work, however, keep in mind this does fall under the skilled labor work category for me.  I do this for my job and not a hobby.

The size will vary the time I take on each piece, so that is why I am giving you the specifics of what I am working on to give you a good idea.

This quilt that I am showing you is all t-shirts (Top and Back) and it is 88″ x 88″.  The only added materials I added in this quilt was batting and thread.  I am still working on it so there is no finished product photo today.  I’ll add one when it is done.

 

The first step is preparing the t-shirts which takes about 4 hours.  In that time, I have to rough cut the shirt, iron stabilizer on the back, then cut to size, and plan the layout of the t-shirts and the design of the quilt.

Next is sewing everything together and pressing.  Not hard…..all straight lines.  It’s amazing how long it really takes….another 5 hours.  Now I have a front and a back of a quilt totally sewn.  I don’t do this all in one day.  It is vary tough on my 52yr old body.  I do it in steps over about a 1-2 week period at the shortest amount of time.

 

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Now, is putting it all together.  The technical term is “sandwiching”.  This is when the top quilt and the back quilt are sandwiching the batting and pin basted together (the little colored dashes in the photo above).  This took me about 1 hour.

The final step is quilting.  This is the stitching that goes through the quilt sandwich to hold it together.  On this size quilt, it takes me approximately 5 hours.

So on an 88″ x 88″ quilt (about a twin size quilt):

Total hours worked:    15 hours.

Adding the skilled labor/hour rate (not as much as a mechanic or general contractor), and material cost.  That is how I come up with my final price.

I hope this helps enlighten you to the time that is involved in this type of work.

Thank you for reading my blog today and visiting my corner of the internet!

Have an amazing day!

Peace – Pam

Skills and Techniques

All About That Thread!

bottom-line-quilted-feathers  Sharing my knowledge of threads with you. Click on this link to read: All about that Thread 

I found Superior Threads to have a vast amount of articles to educate the public on threads, needles, tension, etc.  Here’s their link: Superior Threads Website

They also had on their site a chart of what threads to use for what project and here’s that link: thread-selection-guide

Hope you learned a lot!  I learned that I have more to learn about threads!!!

Thank you for reading my blog and for visiting my corner of the internet!

Pam

 

Skills and Techniques, Uncategorized

Not Just for T-Shirt Quilts – Part 1

I am huge on family memories stories and tangible items.  It’s even better if the item can be sewn!  You can wrap yourself up in those memories or hang them on the wall to gaze upon those memories every day!

You may have heard about T-shirt Quilts.  If not, these are quilts that are made from t-shirts that were saved typically from a young adult’s childhood (ie: sport participation, musicals, school functions, vacations, etc.)

There are quilts that are termed as memory quilts (t-shirt quilts are just a part of that category) are designed from any memory that can be sewn.  For example:  Ties, Hankies, Dance Costumes, Button Down Shirts, even photos (I make a copy of them for the quilt) to name a few.

Currently, I am designing and making a hanky quilt from my customer’s mother’s hankies.  I had a few challenges (which I love to figure out).

  1.  The hankies are a thin fabric  and a bit fragile.  So I decided to back them with Heat and Bond Lite to support the fabric and adhere it to a piece of white fabric (another piece of the puzzle that I will explain).
  2. When I ironed the hankies, they were almost impossible to make perfectly square, so I decided adhering to the white fabric would give me that perfect square to attach to other pieces for a good result.
  3. A couple of hankies had hand crocheted borders that needed to be starched.  I never did that before, but I knew how to do it.  Not hard, but time consuming!!!
  4. The photos below are showing the hanky in the original state.  I started pinning the point of each set of stitches.
  5. After it was all pinned and straight, I sprayed it with Terial Magic and let it dry over night

 

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I was impressed that it came out stiff as a piece of paper!  I was able to adhere it to the white fabric, stitch down and secure the crochet stitches and then eventually into the quilt.

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This is the point I am at so far.  It will be a very big quilt when completed.  I’ll keep you updated as to the progression!!

Please leave a comment to tell me (or ask me) about this article!

Thank you for supporting handmade and reading my corner of the blog world!!

Peace – Pam

 

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art quilt, Skills and Techniques

Borders on an Art Quilt

I was surprised to discover how the color and hue of the border fabric that was auditioned on this art quilt really brought out different hues in the quilt!

 

If you take a look above, the photo to the left is the total painted quilt without no border. Under the same light and same position, to the right, I placed a muddled dark purple fabric next to the piece.  The photo under that one, I placed a batik fabric that had green, teal colors through it.

I was quite convinced that the batik was too bright and the art was calling for a quieter fabric.  That’s why I chose the darker purple.

Wow,  when looking at both photos next to each other, the piece looks totally different!!  One pulls out the darker hues and the art does not look happy and bright.  When the batik was placed next to the piece, the art piece came to life and it was bright and cheery!!

This totally amazed me.  I hope you found it interesting as well!!

art quilt, Skills and Techniques

Wedding Art Quilt Process

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This slide show is a presentation of my process of a wedding photo that I created into a fabric art quilt piece which can be beautifully hung on their wall for years of enjoyment!

The last two photos of this slide show are the original photo and the completed art work from the photo.

I use a combination of fabric, acrylic paint and thread to create my art.  When it is complete, it is put on a frame with a wire so you can easily hang it on a wall when it arrives at your home.  Also on the back is a label that has the couples name (which is not present on the one above), the wedding date, and my contact information.  Each art work is signed in the front as well.

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These make a special unique portrait gift for an anniversary, birth, birthday, wedding, house warming, etc.

I would be honored to create an art piece from a photo that is special to you or a loved one.   I tried to answer all questions, however, if I missed something, please contact me and I would love to answer any and all of your questions.

Please click here to get further details of my art.

art quilt, Skills and Techniques

Carriage Quilt Shoppe Class!

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Color In The Lines – Spring Flower
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We painted on white cotton fabric and used Aloe Gel for our medium! Very different and fun!
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It was time to quilt our sandwich using free motion. This was the first time that some of us did free motion! They all did an amazing job!
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The class was a two session class. We painted on the first day and quilted on the second. Next time, I will take photos of the painting process as well!
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Once quilting was complete, we used a zigzag stitch to finish the outer edge. Then we glued our completed quilt onto a stretched canvas.
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Wow! How amazing that looks!! Looking forward to my next classes!

Look on my teaching page for my up coming teaching engagements.

Skills and Techniques

Faux Pipping Technique

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Have you ever had the thought of adding a fine line to your quilt for framing or to give a pop of color or for a “piped” binding?   Sometimes is tricky to do.  I just learned this trick in my Fiber Interest Group.  I practiced a couple of times and it seems to turn out every time, and wanted to share this technique with you!

In my sample, I used a solid strip at 3/4″ wide by 8″ long.  The print fabric is cut into 2-1/2″ by 6″ strips.  We are going to add the solid in the middle of the two print pieces, and will only show about 1/16″ – 1/8″ wide strip.

  1.  Start with one print piece face up and the solid piece face down.  Right sides facing each other and the sewing edges of both flush and pinned.fullsizeoutput_e19Figure 2
  2. Use 1/4″ seam allowance to sew both pieces together.
  3. Press seem towards the solid fabric. (figure 2)
  4. Place other printed piece right sides together lining up the unsewn solid piece side (figure 3)
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5.  Flip over, align both edges together.

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6.  Using the previous stitch line and your presser foot guides, sew to the right of the first stitch line and the desired end width.    EXAMPLE:  In Figure 4, I know that the first job on my presser foot is 1/8″ away from the needle.  I will stitch a second line to the right of the first to achieve a 1/8″ piping.

7.  Press seam allowance to the second printed fabric on the wrong side.( figure 5)

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8.  Flip to the right side and you have a 1/8″ strip in the middle of your piece!! (figure 6)

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Hope you will try this. Please post a photo of your sample or how you used this technique! I would love to see it!