Sunday, July 14, 2013

The Year of the Feather

No, this is not some oriental New Year of some sort. That is what I dubbed this year back in January. I set out to conquer (well, maybe just get more comfortable with) feathers.
I know you can't see them at all, but I just quilted up this little flimsy and put feathers in the border.
To be honest, so far this year I have only become relatively comfortable with two types of feathers--the style I put on the black border above, which you can't see, and shaped feathers for setting triangles. Both of them are more visible in this little quilt that you may recall I made up back in February.
I have occasionally tried other types of feathers, like these little swirly ones...
...but the free form feathers have eluded me. This year SewCalGal is continuing to challenge us in FMQ, but instead of one challenge a month, there have been six challenges presented and we have until the end of Oct. to complete any three. The second challenge I have chosen is a tutorial on feathers by Joanne (Thread Head blog). We are to practice different feather types and find what works best for us. Then we make up a few quilt sandwiches "about the size of a piece of paper" and mark our feather spines and get quilting. We are to quilt background designs around the feathers and then bind the pieces.
I have filled a few sandwiches with practice feathers, but today I got down to the real thing. So far I have finished the quilting on this one piece...
I'm not too crazy about it, but it just needs the binding, and it will be good to have one under my belt.

My second one, below, doesn't have any background yet, but it is an improvement on the feather, I think.  Deep curves are still a challenge.
I'm toying with the idea of only using one or two designs on the background of this one.

I think I'll try one more sandwich after this and get a little more adventurous with the feather style.

I need to give a shout out to two very kind bloggers who quilt beautiful feathers and have gone out of their way to share information on their methods with me. Thank you Sharon (Grass Roots Quilting blog) and Debbie (Stitchin' Therapy blog) for your efforts in sharing your design sheets. I have referred to both many times, studying them, tracing them, and practicing the styles. It has helped immensely.

Just for fun, I tried to find the sandwich that had my first feather attempt from almost 2 years ago. It is nowhere to be found. I must have chucked that one. I do remember, though, that it didn't even remotely resemble a feather.

One other small thing I did this weekend was finish up two pincushions that have been partially made for months now. One is from the Schnibble Tuffet pattern, from Miss Rosie's Quilt Co., and the other was just a way of using up 6 leftover HST from another project. How do you use 6 HSTs? Answer--make 3 faux flying geese and put them into a pincushion. I made both of these into the "box" style cushion as demonstrated in my Tuffet tutorial on the tab above.
That churn dash is only 1 1/2" finished. I'm thinking it would make a great little ornament. : )
That is all for now.
Until next time,
Janet O.

36 comments:

  1. You are going great with your feathers!! Looks like you have a long arm machine, is that correct?
    Cute little pincushions

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow, I am impressed! Your feathers look great!

    I plan to try feathers this year too. I signed up for a craftsy class on feathers, but haven't tried even a practice sandwich yet.

    ReplyDelete
  3. good for you to keep practicing and perfecting your quilting. I keep saying I am going to do that too, just need to set aside the time and do it!
    love feathers on quilts, great job
    I am so impressed
    Kathie

    ReplyDelete
  4. Fabulous feathers Janet!!!! Good on you with the practise, I really want to get the SewCalGal challenges done this year too. Your little pincushions are too cute - great idea to use up your scraps like that.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Amazing feathers, Janet... I'm impressed with those and those background designs too! Very, very nice!!!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Fabulous feathers! We are our own worse critics....I see my mistakes, and you see yours, but others never even notice! Your backgrounds are amazing, especially the geometric styles, which I do not like to do, and the pebbling is great.
    I'm pinning your project to push me to branch out more!

    ReplyDelete
  7. You are making feather designs much, much better than I could do. I should do like you and practice, practice..

    ReplyDelete
  8. Beautiful just like you!!!

    Don't stress when you do feathers. It's all organic. Hugs.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I think your feathers are beautiful. You are doing a wonderful job improving your quilting skills.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Janet, feathers are my favorite quilting design. I love how they look on almost any quilt. You are amazing when doing your feathers, they look great!
    Kristie

    ReplyDelete
  11. I really think your quilting looks amazing - just love those feathers! And love your new little tuffets.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Keep having fun. It's about the journey.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I love your little quilt! And I think you are doing a great job with your FMQ feathers. That is something I've yet to master.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Oh my, your feathers are just delicious to look at! I especially love all the design work on the brown sampler the way one design flows into another. The more that I look at it, the more that I want to look at it some more!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Oh goodness Janet...you are doing fantastic! I love each project! Way to go!

    ReplyDelete
  16. You look very comfy with feathers! They are beautiful! The brown "sampler" is just fabulous - all the different designs flowing into one another.

    ReplyDelete
  17. I love doing feathers. I need to try the curved fill in ones like you did in the triangles. Very Pretty!

    ReplyDelete
  18. AWESOME!!!! Maybe someday I'll get there!!! Your work is beautiful!! I looked at the Sew Cal Gal challenge - but alas, I'm a little toooooo "rouge" LOL!!! Seems my FMQ is still too fledgling to handle a challenge! So...just stitching away on fun stuff!! cute, cute little pincushions!! You are a wonder!!

    Blessings sweet friend!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Another finished quilt! Where is this little lovely going?
    Your feathers look fabulous! as does the background quilting.
    Love those little pin cushions. What do you fill them with?

    ReplyDelete
  20. Your feathers are wonderful, Janet. Well done. As always love your quilts.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Your feathers are absolutely fabulous! When you actually do them on a quilt the little imperfections (if there are any) won't even show up. At least that's my theory. I want to finish 2 more of the challenges which will complete the 12 months from last year. I didn't get them all finished because of traveling around the country.

    ReplyDelete
  22. My goodness, your feathers are so stunning! I love the look of your samples - they are works of art! I really need to commit practicing machine quilting.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Wonderfull feathers! Your feathers inspires me. One of my next projects is a wish of my daughter. A white whole cloth for her bed. I will try this big feathers!Hope it will be a little bit like your feathers!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Flawless Feathers Mom!
    I agree with Debbie up there :)

    ReplyDelete
  25. These samplers are beautiful!
    :-}pokey

    ReplyDelete
  26. I agree with Aimee... flawless feathers that look fantastic! Really Janet, how could they get any better!?! Love those pin cushions... can never have enough!!!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Practice makes perfect, and I'd say you're making some pretty fantastic feathers. I've made notes of the sources you're getting info from, cuz I want to work on mine some day. Your feathers look full and interesting and flowing, and the background stitching looks like it was great fun to create.
    Way to go, Janet!! My guess is you're much more comfortable with your stitching, and those sandwich samples look like keepers. Evidence of how well you're doing. To me, your stitching looks wonderful !!

    ReplyDelete
  28. Beautiful quilting, Janet!! Love your pin cushions, too! I collect them old and new...you can never have enough-- is right!

    Carolyn

    ReplyDelete
  29. Janet, I am impressed with your feathers and your drive to learn. I need to bite the bullet and make some sandwiches!!! Your little pin cushions are precious!!!

    ReplyDelete
  30. Janet, all I can say is AWESOME! Your quilting is really great, you could quilt mine anytime. LOL I like the rail fence quilt, the colors are beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Well, my humble opinion is "your feathers are great"!
    So are your little pincushions, could you direct me to you tuffet tutorial? I can't seem to get the tab to work.

    ReplyDelete
  32. You are seriously mastering the feathers! Way to go!!

    ReplyDelete
  33. I haven't attempted a single feather yet but I think your hours of practice are certainly paying off! Love your sandwich, and seeing all your different quilting designs. Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  34. Good job with those things! The rail quilt is perfect -- you did a terrific job with it! And very nice of your teacher/mentors to lend assistance . . . you know the old saying, right? Quilters of a feather, stick together! LOL! :)

    ReplyDelete
  35. Hello,
    awesome feathers! I love your pincushions too. I couldn't get the "tuffet tab" to work either but I believe I found your tutorial here: http://roguequilter.blogspot.fr/p/tuffet-tute.html Thank you!
    The "tumbler flag" tab is not active either on my screen.
    Beatrice (from France - Europe).

    ReplyDelete

I love to have your comments and feedback.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...