Quilt ADD in therapy

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Colorado, United States
Other than my family, the passion of my life is quilting. An eclectic, I love a wide variety of styles and techniques encompassing both machine and hand work. I am a longarm quilter who can work for you. I enjoy any style, from pantographs to all-over to full custom, ranging from traditional to modern. I love bringing vintage tops to life and am willing to work with a challenging quilt top. Instagram: lyncc_quilts

Friday, February 27, 2015

Two UFOs Shot Down!!

Yay!!!!  I've finished two UFO minis this week, and it's exciting for me beyond just finishing something that was put together in 2011.

I ain't skeered of no stinkin' McKenna Ryan quilts anymore! In fact, I'm rather puffed up with pleasure at the leap forward.

Koo Koo Puff

Her designs have lots of little fused pieces that are semi-insane to cut out and put together. In many places there are multiple layers which are quite thick with fabric and fusible. The thought of doing the actual stitching on these has frankly freaked me out, both in terms of the level of FMQ skill needed and the difficulty of working through all those finicky layers.

This month I made myself Get Over It and finally got to work on the ones I like least out of the mini collection for "Sea Breeze." This has a series of nine 17"-square scenes, and they will be stretch-mounted on canvas frames to be wall art.

The Snooty Sisters
2015 FAL at On the Windy Side
"The Snooty Sisters" were up first. This mini was on my Q1 goal sheet for the 2015 Finish Along. 

I decided I wanted to further complicate this project by doing trapunto on the marine figures. No big deal: pull out scraps of my wool batting, pin it behind that portion of the quilt, and do the applique stitching for the trapunto layer. (I'm going to work up a tutorial for that with later companion minis.) Well, my Sapphire has a very sensitive tension system, and that fusible stuff really threw it for a loop. Literally.  Loops and nasty nests on the back like this one:

ALL OVER THE PLACE, no matter how I tried to compensate for it. I was bad. After taking out and redoing about 400 of them, I left all the ones you see here and just pulled everything tight to the back as well as I could and tied them securely.

It was all going to be hidden away, anyhow, and this was meant for my own studio, not any competition or commission. Still, I was pulling my hair out at the thought of 8 more of these, and was ready to chuck the whole set back into deep storage for another 4 years!

But then I saw a very timely conversation on Margaret Gunn's Facebook page where somebody offered the tip of applying a drop of Sewer's Aid directly to the machine needle periodically. BRILLIANT! Problem solved!!  Remarkably, when I did the trapunto/applique stitching on "Koo Koo Puff," not a single nest! And I was so excited on that one that I forgot to snap a picture and rushed right into the next step of relayering it with the full batting and its backing. So you don't get to see the beautiful sight of a perfectly clean backside with smooth, happy stitching along all the layering batt.

So, I got both of these quilted up. I kept things pretty simple (but with my own twists), because I like the look in the pattern pictures of them finished that way on the frames. 

I threw in some bubble doodles in silver hologram thread for the seahorses. It's super sparkly in real life:

No binding was necessary, or even desirable - I just finished the edges with zig-zag stitching because it's all going to be hidden away when I take the whole set over to be mounted. (7 more to finish, first.) For now, I've pinned them up by my ironing station.

I really love the effect achieved with the trapunto! Can you see the dimension the figures have? 

Especially this guy! He is COOL with all his poof! (What else could I do with a puffer, fish, I ask?) I went all out and gave him two trapunto layers, in fact. The first one lies under his face and one more "ring", and the other lies under his whole silhouette. It worked perfectly without creating a shelf in the exterior hand of the quilt:

It did cause the outer strips that have no quilting to ruffle up a bit, but those pull out flat very easily, so they won't show when it's mounted. If this much puff was put into a non-mounted project, those outer areas would need fairly dense fill-quilting to tame them.

It was cheaper to buy the 9 unassembled frames from an online art supply store than to get 2 ready-to-go frames from Michaels. Now, if I could just find what I did with the connecting hardware. . . 

So, the verdict is that even with stiffer fused figures, the technique works marvelously. I used washable Tuscany wool batting scraps for the first run, and Hobbs 80/20 cotton/poly for the full bottom layer.

That makes 2 of these UFOs finished for February, which I'll be reporting to Aunt Marti for her UFO Parade at 52 Quilts.

And I'll probably get 3 or 4 done up in March. After this set, I still have a full-sized Christmas flimsy and a beach flimsy of her designs that have been waiting for years, as well, to be finished. And if you follow me, you know I'm working on yet another in my BOMs lineup. But I'm not so freaked about them now.

Linking up at:


  1. What an enjoyable post....can see how much fun you are having....with great results!!!

  2. These are lovely! Love the puffiness of the fish, trapunto is so fun!

  3. I have a love/hate relationship with McKenna Ryan. Great info on the Sewer's Aid on the needle. I've tried it on the thread itself and didn't have as much success. These blocks are fabulous!

  4. You've brought these water scenes to life with your beautiful quilting and clever puffiness. How perfect that you came across the solution for the tangles. They will look wonderful framed.

  5. I'm so glad to see you working on these, they're so beautiful and I do my McKenna Ryan vicariously through you, LOL.

  6. These blocks are just gorgeous--color selection, quilting, trapunto, everything! Very impressive! I have one pattern from McKenna Ryan, but I'm still skeert to try it! Your post will be so helpful.

  7. So much great advice Lyn! It would be terrific if you could do a tute on your trapunto technique. (I sense an alliteration coming on)
    If these are your least favorite blocks, oh my, I can't wait to see the rest!

  8. Sehr schön sind Deine Meereswesen geworden! Eine schöne Arbeit. Liebe Grüße lykka

  9. Loved your work. Bellos. I made counterpoint with the sewing machine, mine with much simpler figures.

  10. They look great, I think the trapunto was a perfect choice. It really brings them to life. I look forward to seeing the others as you finish!

  11. Hello Lyn,

    The sea horses are too beautiful for words - you would never know they gave you so much trouble.

    Thank you for linking up with Free Motion Mavericks!

    Love, Muv

  12. Oh My, these are truly lovely blocks, I am in serious awe!

  13. These are beautiful! Makes me wonder what rock I've been under! How come I haven't seen them before?


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