You might recall that one of the BOMs I'm doing this year is the Hoop Sisters Feathered Star. I did a blog post about my excitement for it a while back.
For some reason, I have been paralyzed by fear to start it. Don't know why...maybe because there's been quite an investment in fabric, thread, and embroidery designs. Maybe it's because this is different from anything I've tried before. The blocks are all done on the embroidery machine. While I've done machine embroidery, I have never made quilt blocks of this level of detail before.
But at the Great Lakes Modern Quilt Guild meeting, I met Elaine, who is also doing this quilt. She said, "Just go for it! You'll be fine!" So, with her encouragement, I am forging ahead.
I finally took the plunge this weekend and made my first block. And here it is! It measures 8" inside the line around the outside. That line is water soluble thread and is where the block will be sewn to another block. I haven't trimmed everything yet. This is one block of six that will form the feathered star. I'm using my friend Jackie's hand-dyed fabrics for the colors, and a Bella white for the background.
Here is a close up of the stitching/quilting. The "feathers" are all threadwork, not fabric. There is an extraordinary amount of quilting in the block. I am using Floriani embroidery thread for all the colored threads. I was successful in finding threads that matched my fabrics really well. Maybe I shouldn't have matched them so well...they might show up a little better if they were just a bit "off."
Sorry for the poor lighting. It's another rainy day here! Here is a photo of the quilting in the white/background area. Also beautiful! I am using Aurifil 50 wt. white cotton thread here. I wanted it to contrast with the embroidery thread. It is thinner than the embroidery thread and not shiny.
Sharon Schamber did all the quilting designs for this. I think the quilting is just fantastic.
Here is the back of the block. I am using a Bella white for the back also. For some steps of the embroidery, you do the sewing before applying the backing fabric. Then, the backing is applied, and you are supposed to put matching thread in the bobbin so all the quilting stitches show up on the back.
This block had almost 28,000 embroidery stitches on it. Wow! It took me about 3 hours to stitch it out (there were a few breaks in there). But it's worth it. I am looking forward to making more blocks and getting them assembled. I'll keep you posted. So far, I am happy with how it's turning out. I'm wondering how "comfy" this quilt will be as a bed quilt, however, with all the threadwork on it. It has the potential to be sort of stiff. Oh well....perhaps the beauty of it will make up for it. :-)
Hope you are having a good week!
Until next time,