- Sherri Ramsey
Spring Has Sprung, Fabric Dyeing and More!
Spring Has Sprung - At least in Colorado!
I see the beauty of nature and new growth all around me. Is it just me, or do the birds sing louder too? This is a great time for me to finish quilt tops. I have numerous BOM’s that I’m trying to catch up on so that I can complete the top to do my favorite thing – quilt it! Do you have any unfinished quilt tops or BOM’s lying around? Let the new growth of nature spring you into completing at least one quilt top – no perfection necessary! And if you need a longarm quilter to quilt it for you – I’m your gal! It’s what I do. Just email me, or click the Book A Quilt tab on my website.
Fabric Dyeing Retreat
Earlier this month, I attended a fantastic workshop with Jane Dunnewold on Dyeing the Color Wheel and Approaches to Over-dyeing. It was held at the beautiful Gateway Canyon Resort on the Western slope in Colorado, and hosted by Alegre Retreat. It was a fantastic week filled with lots of color, laughter, quilts, and new friendships. I cannot to use these fabrics (and dye more) for a new quilt I have in the design works!
Pantograph of the Month - Spring Break
I selected the pantograph “Spring Break” as my featured pantograph this month. It’s curvy and flirty, and flowing with floral interludes. And it stitches out beautifully! If you like denser quilting, this one is just right. If you prefer something a little looser, I can scale it a bit larger – just let me know your preference!
Celestial Solar Eclipse
Also, this month, if you are in the Southern Hemisphere, you can witness a total Solar Eclipse on April 20, 2023. Read about the rarity of this event here. If you’re into spirituality and want to know more about the effects this eclipse may have, a fun article to read can be found here. Even though I am not in the Southern Hemisphere, be sure that I’ll be checking out the sky on this night and feeling the vibes! I may have to add eclipse-chasing to my future travel plans!
These are a few of my favorite things!
Fons & Porter Notions Instant Flannel Design Wall 60” x 72” I love it when things help make my life easier – especially when it comes to piecing a quilt. I recently bought this INSTANT design wall from Fons & Porter. It’s easy to hang with 3M Hooks – (no need for honey-do tasks – I hung this myself!) Just pre-mark your wall so you have a straight line before you place the hooks!
Homedics PerfectSTEAM 2-in1 Garment Steamer & Iron This puppy fits perfectly in my hand. Fill with distilled water, plug in, turn to the desired setting, and TADA! You have a perfect mini iron and steamer. I mostly use this as a steamer when long-arming vintage quilts that have lots of puckers and waves.
Sewing Clips with Tin Storage
If you quilt, I am pretty confident that you have used (or seen) these cute little colorful clips. If you don’t have these – you should! They don’t poke like pins and are perfect for holding the fabric together when binding. Bonus-- they come in a cute little metal tin for storage.
Question of the Month
Why do I need so much backing when I send my quilt top to be longarmed? My Opinion:
I suggest an extra 4” of backing fabric on EACH side of your quilt top. Example: If your quilt top is 60” x 70”, your backing should be 68” x 78” (size of quilt top plus 4” on the left, right, top, bottom).
The reason this is important for long-arm quilters is so that when the backing is loaded onto the frame, the sew head has room to comfortably reach the edges of the quilt top, sides, and bottom without any hindrances. The backing fabric is secured to the top and bottom bar, and a heavy-duty clamp on the left and right side holding the backing in place.
If, for some reason, the backing is not large enough, then I have to take more time (costing you more money) to sew leaders onto your backing to achieve the necessary space required for longarm quilting.
I like to think of this process as the “first layer” in achieving a successful quilt-out. Having a stable backing that is flat and square sets the stage for the success of the rest of the quilting process.
Do you have a question that I can feature in a future newsletter? Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.