Turns out an old dog can learn new tricks. My Machine Quilting Unlimited column, Filler Finesse, is expanded in 2012 - 3 fills per issue instead of two, and an additional stitched out sample using all three fills in one composition. I've decided to use the "three fills in one" compositions to try out some techniques that I haven't really used before. Back in September I shared an experiment I made using thread painting - something new to me. For the March issue I tried something else.
I can't show you the whole sample, as that would give away the quilting fills, but wanted to focus on this flower. I've used fusible applique many times in the past, but generally satin stitch the edges down. In this sample I quilted the entire background first, then fused on the flowers. OK, not terribly exciting. However, the real departure for me was that I did not trace the flower parts at all. I looked at a bunch of crocus photographs, made some very rough sketches, then applied fusible web to my hand dyed fabrics. I then cut out all the applique pieces free hand, just looking at my little sketches. I think I could have done a little better with the shading of the fabrics, but for someone who has always done applique in a very preplanned and precise manner, I'm quite happy with how it turned out.
Have you tried anything new lately?