In my last post I talked about transferring the design to the black background fabric. The photo above shows the image drawn on the background. I wanted to make sure the moon and tree stood out more than the other features, so I couched around each of these with yarn.
Before stitching I pinned a piece of light weight interfacing behind the black fabric to add some body to the fabric as it is being stitched. The interfacing acts as a stabilizer. I cut it out after the couching of the yarn is done to make sure I didn't have anything too stiff to machine quilt through.
By couching I mean that I stitched yarn down to the drawn line using a zig-zag stitch. I did this on my Pfaff 1475 CD machine. I used this presser foot for this process:
This foot allows me to have the yarn slide under the bump in the center of the foot. I have had good luck using this foot for couching. I hold the yarn to the left and let it feed in as I go. I can see the stitching on the drawn line in the slot in the foot. Here is a photo of me stitching down the yarn around the moon shape.
Here is the top with the yarn couched.
My next step is to sandwich the top with batting, and backing. I use black batting when I have a dark top. If any of the batt comes through the top (bearding) you can’t see any of the light colored whiskers from it.
Once the quilt sandwich is made, its time to do all the machine quilting for this piece. For the design lines I stitched using bright colors of threads. My thread colors included pinks, fuchsias, golds, and tans. I also machine stitched inside the design elements. The stitching inside the features is a large part of the design of a quilt like this, so I tried to use interesting stitches. You can see some examples here of the stitching patterns I used. These photos show the area after the oil paint stick has been applied, but you can still see the stitches.
After the design elements were quilted I stitched the background using a navy thread. I thought the navy color would add a little more visibility to the stitching if you are close up to the quilt. I tried to cover the top so that the stitching occurred at least every ½ to ¾ inch on the top. Here you can see the stitching in the black background area.
After all the machine quilting is done its time to apply the oil paint stick. That will be the next post. Stay tuned!
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