Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Quilts, Embroidery, and Meg

The power of the internet is an amazing thing for quilting and crafts. Back in the B.I. age (before internet), a quilter might go into a shop and find a great pattern, buy it, and show it to a friend, who would then have to get the pattern as well. They'd show other friends and before long, many of the quilters in a community would have the same pattern. But it wasn't global like it is now that we've entered the internet age--unless a manufacturer advertised a product in a national publication. Now we can just post a great find on our blogs and other like-minded quilters see it and go out and buy it--or, better yet, order it off an internet website. That's GOTTA be good for the economy, doesn't it? Maybe someone should do a study.

Speaking of studies, I saw a headline the other day that said, "study reveals women don't like to look at deformed babies." Or something like that. I knew I should bookmark it but I forgot. Anyway, a couple questions came to mind. As usual one of my first thoughts was "Gee, they needed a study for that? How much did they spend on the study?" And the second question was "So MEN like looking at deformed babies? Or is this a really sexist study?" Anyway, like I said, I forgot to bookmark the site and never did read the article, so maybe I'm waaaay off base--maybe the article would have justified the study. But I'm rambling. Back to the subject.

The other day, Dianne Flamingo Feet posted the first block she'd completed of a 12-block stitchery by Crabapple Hill called Hocuspocusville. Really cute. It's a Halloween pattern, and each block is a different "store" in town--for instance, Dianne showed her finished quilt shop block. And, having recently discovered the wonders of embroidery--yet another craft to spend money on--and being a complete sucker for any type of "house" pattern, I had to buy it. She megged me.

(Do you know about megging? If not, check out this old post of Vicky's. I love the term! Up until I saw Vicky's explanation, "megging" to me--me being the typical soccer mom--meant tricking someone in soccer by kicking the ball through their legs. Which is kind of similar when you think about it!)

So, anyway, here's a photo of my brand spanking new pattern:


Have I megged anyone yet?

If not, well it's kind of hard to see the pattern and then there's that glare on the packaging. If you'd like you can go HERE and see it at the Crabapple Hill website. Click on the image to enlarge it. (By the way, if you're feeling a bit megged, let me help you out here: I found mine on sale at Over the Rainbow.)

I like the way some designers have used stitcheries in quilts, but sometimes I feel the pieced portions of a quilt overwhelm the stitchery parts--and since the stitcheries take the most time, that doesn't seem fair. If/when I make this, I think I'll at least want to change the colors used in the pieced portion of the quilt. Maybe I'd use something like that Michael Miller spider web fabric in place of the black squares to lighten it up some.

I think, though, that Helen got it right in designing this Christmas quilt:


To my eye, it looks much better balanced, and the stitcheries hold their own. Have you gotten hooked on embroidery yet? What do you think about using it in a quilt? Inquiring minds . . . .

The other question in my mind involves quilting a quilt that has a lot of embroidery. How do you quilt it? That's a bridge I haven't come to yet, but I'm sure I will some day. Are there any "rules"? In the photo for this Crabapple Hill pattern I just bought, the quilting on the stitchery blocks is just a kind of meandering in the background that looks a bit like clouds. I think it works pretty well. But what about where the embroidered block is words, like the block above that says "Merry Christmas to all . . ."?

Maybe someone should do a study. Let me know if you come across one, okay?

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi, You should see the Halloween quilt made at Starry Night Hollow Quilt shop in Leucadia, Ca. It is done on fabric that goes from orange to bright pink. They have added a little paint to it and then stitched in black. Very nice! By the way ypu're a kick, love reading your blog! Thanks, Janet

Anonymous said...

I can't beleive yoou found Hocuspocusville too!! I just ordered it 3 days ago.I agree with you about quilting an embroidered quilt, it is a problem. I wouldn't want the quilting to go over the embroidery. I'm doing another new craft as well, locker rug hooking,have you tried that yet?! Hugs, Cathy Trumble

Kelly Ann said...

I also ordered Hocuspocusville..and recently gotten so stuck on embroidery work. I've pulled out my cross stitch, ordered some really cute patterns from Bareroots and we're even gonna have an embroidery club at my store...I'm tellin' ya...it's hot...hot I tell you...

Orcsmom said...

Megging, maybe I can use that I my boss, what da ya think? WOuld I be charges with harassment? At this point, who cares!! I am with you, I am enjoying embroidery more than quilting! I think I am also going to have to get that pattern, maybe Lindy will order it? Anyway, I love your Jo's quilt, it turned out brighter than the picture, which I like! I won't be there Wed., baseball meeting, last one, yeah, but BFF will be. Oh, she is excited about you going to camp in Sept. Talk to ya later!

Pam

Vicky said...

Uh, Kim? Trying to meg me back, huh? LOL. That pattern is gorgeous, but I agree with you about replacing the black. Can't wait to see your blocks!

Nancy said...

Well, it seems I have been megged in the past and just didn't know it. Our redwork group meets at a quilt store and the leader brings all the new patterns to show us...Talk about pressure!! LOL

I have an embroidery quilt top ready to be quilted and will just do stitch in the ditch between the blocks. Since there is very little white space around the stitchery it will work for this one.

We had a discussion at redwork club about this subject and the consensus was not to quilt through the embroidery, but to stop and restart..

dianne said...

ha ha ha! so far i've megged you and Mamasparks with Hocuspocusville (known around here as HPV - not the virus) - and i megged ME with the witch's hat that is crazy quilting, also from Crabapple Hill ...... as soon as i finish HPV, i'll let you know how i decide to piece and quilt it - that should be in four or five YEARS, give or take (i did buy some Moda "Chic or Treat" charm packs when they were on sale ... check out the line and let me know if i megged you again)

Tamara said...

One of my local quilting friends has the hocus pattern and she too is not thrilled with the pieced part of the pattern, so she will be changing it up to suit her likes. Just like I know you will change it up and get a great finished project.

Crazy for Primitive Quilts and Gardens said...

I also have this pattern and, in fact, traced my first block last weekend! Took an hour, lol. And funny, but I started with the exact same one... the quilt shop of course! I agree with everything you said about balance. I love this quilt, but might change things up a bit in order for the embroidery to be the 'star'. And I have completely fallen head over heels for embroidery in my quilting. It combines my love of cross stitch into the quilting art. :o)

Gran said...

Cute post - never heard of "megging" so look out I am going to meg you te he

Heckety said...

I would make wall-hangings as presents with a redwork embroidered panel framed by patchwork. So far quilting in the ditch round the embroidery and more elaborate quilting on the patchwork has worked. I love the balance betwwen the embroidery and the patchwork. Several of the Australian quilting and stitchery magazines have regular embroidery patterns. Hatched and Patched would have to be my absolute favourite, not sure if they are Australian though.
The christmas pattern you showed has me all excited....

Dawn Heese said...

One of the local quilt shops here is doing it for a block of the month. If I had kept up with mine it would be done in time for Halloween. I love it but I am still behind. As Usual.

Sregora said...

I love the "'Twas The Night Before Christmas" pattern!