Vintage Sewing Machines and the Multi-Purpose Quilt Spray

Have you ever noticed those scratches on the bed of your vintage sewing machines and wondered how they got there?

There are any number of reasons about how the machine bed got scratched, but I think that the majority of the time, the damage can be attributed to pins.

These older machines were mostly used for practical sewing and you know that straight pins are an essential part of that type of stitching.

Adding a collar to a shirt? Got to have pins to hold those pieces together as you stitch.

Easing in a full sleeve? Where are those pins?

Unfortunately, straight pins have a tendency to pop out of the fabric sometimes and jam on the sewing machine bed – if not in your fingers! Before you realize it, they’ve damaged the finish on your bed.

 
Old-fashioned "pin cushions" could cause scratches to the machine

Old-fashioned "pin cushions" could cause scratches to the machine

 

We also use pins when basting our quilt sandwich together, although these are quilting pins and not straight pins. They can still pop open and cause damage or you might be trying to open one up as you are quilting along and accidentally catch it on the bed of the vintage sewing machine. There’s a way to avoid this type of damage to your machine when you are quilting: use the Multi-Purpose Quilt Spray, rather than quilting pins! Get rid of your quilting pins and use this spray to baste your quilt sandwich.

If you haven’t already read the previous blogposts about this Multi-Purpose Quilt Spray and its uses, I’ve gathered all the information into one blogpost that you can read here.

Using it when quilting on your vintage sewing machine prevents the addition of more scratches to the machine bed. It also allows you to quilt without having to stop to remove quilting pins. A double win!

Try the Multi-Purpose Quilt Spray when quilting on your modern, or vintage, sewing machine. It's FREE and you can print it out so you'll have all the information you need to make your own batch of it.

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If you have any questions or comments about this spray, please leave them in the Comments below.

Creatively,

 

P.S. Join the private Chatterbox Quilts Facebook group for quilting and vintage sewing machine information.

Stitch and Flip Flower Block

Now that things are finally warming up in Calgary - I thought the winter would never end - I think it's the perfect time to create some flowers in our quilts. Today's Telecast Thursday is all about creating a pieced flower from a Stitch and Flip block.

If you haven't watched all of the videos about creating this type of quick quilt block, you can find them all grouped into a playlist for easier location.

The Stitch and Flip Flower block is created from four Stitch and Flip blocks. The key is the fabric placement. To make each block you'll need:

1 - 5" square (this will form the petal)

3 - 1" white or light coloured squares (this will form the background of the petal)

1 - 2" yellow square (to form the flower centre)

It's important to ensure that there is a contrast between the petal fabric and the background fabric to create the proper effect. While I've used yellow fabric for the flower centre, you could use other colours, just be sure they contrast with the petal fabric.

Draw a diagonal line on the back of all of the smaller squares (1" and 2" ones). Place the yellow square on one corner, right sides together, of the 5" square (the petal fabric). Stitch along the diagonal line or just a teeny bit off towards the corner. Press the yellow fabric towards the corner and then trim off the underneath fabrics. Repeat this process for the remaining 3 - 1" squares.

To make the flower itself, you'll need to make three more of these units. 

Refer to the video below on or my YouTube channel to see how to arrange the four blocks to create one lovely flower.

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While my flower looks like a poppy due to my choice of the red colour, you could certainly change up the petal fabric to create the look of other flowers. Morning glories, anyone?

Please share this information with your quilting friends. You can do this by clicking on the "Share" icon below and send out this blog post via your favourite social media site.

I'd love to hear your suggestions for how you could use these blocks in a quilt setting. Would you just use the same colour for the petals or would you mix them up with wild colours? Let me know your ideas in the comments below.

Creatively,

 

P.S. Please join my private Chatterbox Quilts' Facebook group for information and discussions on quilting topics. I'd love to chat with you there!

 

 

 

Essential Oils in the Multi-Purpose Quilt Spray

I recently received a comment on my YouTube video about the Multi-Purpose Quilt Spray that you can make yourself. (If you haven’t seen the previous videos on this amazing and easy to make spray, you can find them here).

The comment was:

 

"Have you or anyone else ever considered adding some type of fragrance? If so, I'm wondering what would work best.” From JB

 
 

The Multi-Purpose Quilt Spray has quite a strong medicinal odour and it would be great if something could be added to it to change it to a more pleasant smell. I’m not a parfumière, but my first thought was to add essential oil to the spray. So I did. I added several drops of lavender oil to the already made spray and let it sit for several days.

In addition to changing the smell to something more agreeable, I wanted to be sure that the spray would not leave an oily mark on my fabric. I sprayed some dark batik and then sandwiched it, just as I would for a quilt. And then I left it to dry overnight.

 
Sample sandwiches for testing

Sample sandwiches for testing

 

Here’s what I found:

1.     The essential oil didn't dramatically change the smell of the spray

2.     The spray did/didn’t leave a mark on any of the fabrics

 
Teeka, the sample inspector

Teeka, the sample inspector

 

I found that I had to add more lavender oil to the spray than I would’ve thought to change the smell of it at all. Unfortunately, I couldn't ever completely erase the medicine-y smell of the Multi-Purpose Quilt Spray, even with lots of lavender oil drops. The good news is that the added oil did not stain any of the quilt sandwich samples. 

Get the FREE Multi-Purpose Quilt Spray printable download so you can create your own quilt spray.

If you have any suggestions as to a method of improving the smell of the Multi-Purpose Quilt Spray, please leave them in the Comments below.

 Creatively,

 

P.S. Join the private Chatterbox Quilts Facebook group for quilting and vintage sewing machine information. I'd love to have you join us :)

Double Stitch and Flip Block

Welcome to this week's episode of Telecast Thursday!

I'm adding another block to the Quick Quilt Blocks playlist with the Double Stitch and Flip block. I must say that as we go on, the blocks are sounding more and more like gymnastic manoeuvres! :)

This block builds on the original Stitch and Flip block, so if you haven't already watched the video on that block, you might want to check it out. 

To make the Double Stitch and Flip block, you will need:

  • 1 - 5" background square
  • 1 - 3 1/2" square
  • 1 - 2 1/2" square 

You can, of course, adjust the sizes of these squares, but I would suggest that the smallest square should be half the size of the background square and the second square should be at least 1" larger than that square. For example, if your background square was 9", the smallest square would be 4 1/2" and the second square would be 5 1/2". 

I would strongly suggest that you ensure that there is good contrast between these fabrics to make this block effective. If the background block is a dark fabric, the next block should be a light and the smallest block should be darker again. You'll see what I mean in the video.

You'll draw a diagonal line on the back of the two smaller squares and then match the larger of these two up, right sides together, on one corner of the background block. Stitch along this diagonal line or slightly off it, closer to the corner. Press out to the corner and then trim off the underneath fabrics 1/4" away from the stitched line and then you can add the second smallest square in the same way.

Watch the video for how to create bonus half square triangles while stitching this block. It's always nice to get two blocks from creating one!

You can watch the video showing this block creation below or on my YouTube channel.

Remember to check the Quick Quilt Blocks playlist to see other quick quilt blocks (try saying that three times in a row!).

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Feel free to share this blog post with your friends. Just click on the "Share" button below to share on your favourite social media platform. 

Do you have any favourite quick quilt blocks? I'm looking for suggestions as to how these can be put together into a quilt so if you have any ideas, please let me know in the comments below.

Creatively,

 

P.S. Please join my private Chatterbox Quilts' Facebook group for information and discussions on quilting topics. I'd love to chat with you there!

Spring has Sprung with Janome

Did you see my recent project in the Janome Life blog? I created a quick spring project using the Janome Artistic Edge digital cutter as well as the Janome Memory Craft 500E embroidery machine. 

 
I kept the project really simple by popping it into an embroidery hoop.

I kept the project really simple by popping it into an embroidery hoop.

 

I wanted to keep this project simple and knew that the Artistic Edge would make cutting out the intricate appliqué shapes so easy and accurate - and I was right! While I could've spent lots of time drafting up a design on my own, I opted to use a design that was already available in the Simple Cut software that was bundled with the Artistic Edge. 

 
Accurate cuts with the Janome Artistic Edge digital cutter

Accurate cuts with the Janome Artistic Edge digital cutter

 

Once I had refined my design I chose some decorative stitches to use with the Memory Craft 500E to finish off the appliqué edges. It is so much fun to choose from the hundreds of stitches available in the Simple Cut software. You can lengthen or widen these stitches to create your own version of them. I had to be careful not to play around too much with the stitches or I might never have completed the project!

 
Just a few of the decorative stitches available with the Simple Cut software

Just a few of the decorative stitches available with the Simple Cut software

 

I wrote two articles for the Janome Life blog (one in February and the follow up in March). Click on the photos to read them.

 
Ready to cut out appliqué shapes on the Janome Artistic Edge digital cutter

Ready to cut out appliqué shapes on the Janome Artistic Edge digital cutter

 
 
Final project looks great on my fireplace mantle

Final project looks great on my fireplace mantle

 

If you have any questions about this project or how to create one that is similar, post them in the Comments below and I'll be happy to help you out.

Creatively,

 

P.S. Please join the private Chatterbox Quilts Facebook group where we carry on lively discussions on vintage sewing machines and quilting related topics. I'll see you there!