Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Applique an Airedale, Part 5 - Photos

This is an overview of the creation of "N is for Nosepoke."

Drawing the pattern onto the stabilizer.

Drawing the individual pattern pieces onto the
matte side of freezer paper.

Ironing the background fabric.

Stitching the background fabric to the stabilizer
which has the pattern drawn onto it.

Ironing two freezer paper pattern pieces
onto the front side of fabric.

A pattern piece cut out with edges folded to the back and
pressed. On the right side of the blue piece you can
just barely see the white freezer paper around the edge.

Both pieces of the back side of "N" with folded edges.
Gluestick was used to keep several sections of the fold in place.

The front side of the "N" with the freezer paper still attached.

Both sections of the "N." The blue section has already been stitched.
The section with freezer paper is pinned, ready to be stitched.
I leave the freezer paper on until after the piece has been stitched.
You can just barely see the pattern through the background fabric.

The "N" and two legs stitched in place.

The little 'dale's beard is stitched in place.

The little 'dale's head stitched in place.

The little 'dale's ears pinned in place, ready to be stitched.

Big 'dale's head, near front leg, and belly stitched.
Back leg, thigh, and tail pinned, ready to be stitched.

Big 'dale's saddle pinned in place. The head, neck, and leg
were cut in one piece but for the applique to lay flat,
the head and saddle needed to interlock. The lower part
of the head/neck/leg piece is behind the black saddle;
the back of the neck/head is on top of the saddle.

A larger photo of the above image.

Little 'dale's paws have been added, big 'dale's saddle and ears
have been stitched. Eyes, mouth, and noses have been added.
Embroidery floss is being auditioned for eyebrow details.

Detail of noses, mouth, and eyebrows.

The finished block.

Other posts in this series:
"A is for Airedale" Quilt Patterns Available Now!
Applique an Airedale, Part 1 - Tracing the Pattern
Applique an Airedale, Part 2 - Auditioning and Choosing Fabrics
Applique an Airedale, Part 3 - Cutting the Pattern Pieces
Applique an Airedale, Part 4 - Stitching, Finishing
Applique an Airedale, Part 5 - Photos

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Applique an Airedale, Part 4 - Stitching, Finishing

Step 1 - Placing Pieces

You may need to hold your stabilizer & backing fabric up to a window to see exactly where the pieces go. Look at your pattern and the pieces you have to applique and decide which should be attached closest to the backing fabric and which will be attached on top of those. Pin the first piece in place.

Step 2 - Stitching

The next step in appliqueing a quilt block is the actual stitching. There are several ways to stitch around the edge of the pieces. I prefer a stitch that is nearly invisible.

The front of your quilt will have the tiniest stitches along the edges of the fabric pieces. The back side of the fabric will seem to have little dashes going all the way around the pieces that you've stitched down.

I'm going to send you to several other sites that explain it better than I can. Or you can probably find a book at your local library that will detail the actual stitching process.

Learn to Applique has the best instructions for the actual hand sewing of the applique pieces. It gives directions for turning, clipping seam allowances, and pressing, etc. The site also suggests two ways to use freezer paper. The freezer paper method I've described is the one she calls "Now the Method I Use" at the very end of the webpage.

Another source for more information is Standard Hand Applique Stitch where you can see another drawing and explanation.

Or this video might be helpful to you.

Step 3 - The Tiny Pieces

Sometimes you will find that there are some very small pieces to be appliqued. You'll have to decide your comfort level in regards to the size for appliqueing. Often it's better to embroider the smaller pieces, and I think it's always best to embroider lines.

Step 4 - Finishing

You may find that you'd like to wash your block before sewing borders on it or sewing it into a quilt. You can do this by hand, gently, and then lay flat to dry. You may find that you'll need to gently press it when it's just slightly damp.

And you're finished! Hooray!

Other posts in this series:
"A is for Airedale" Quilt Patterns Available Now!
Applique an Airedale, Part 1 - Tracing the Pattern
Applique an Airedale, Part 2 - Auditioning and Choosing Fabrics
Applique an Airedale, Part 3 - Cutting the Pattern Pieces
Applique an Airedale, Part 4 - Stitching, Finishing
Applique an Airedale, Part 5 - Photos

Monday, October 31, 2011

Applique an Airedale, Part 3 - Cutting the Pattern Pieces

Step 1 - Cutting the Paper Patterns

Carefully cut out the pattern pieces you traced onto freezer paper earlier. Carefully, on the lines. It will seem like you have puzzle pieces because of all sizes and shapes.

Step 2 - Evaluating Layers

As you've been working with your pattern (and if you're appliqueing by hand) you may have realized that some pieces will overlap others. In the photo to the right I think you can most easily see that with the front legs on the right side of the photo. One front leg is attached to the dog -- it's the right leg. The other front leg -- the left leg -- is unattached. On the unattached left leg you can see the outline of the right leg. That unattached leg will be stitched before the leg/chest/head piece.

Look at the saddle/upper tail and hind leg/under tail. The hind leg/undertail will be stitched first, then the saddle/upper tail will be stitched on top.

Hold this thought while I tell you the next step or two. You may need to come back to this to look again.

Step 3 - Ironing Paper Patterns to Fabric

You used freezer paper to trace and cut out your patterns because the wax on the underside of the freezer paper will melt and hold onto fabric when ironed.

Lay your cut out paper pattern pieces shiny side down (drawn pattern side up) on the front of the fabric you've chosen for each piece. Heat your iron to the setting appropriate for your fabric (probably cotton) and place the iron on the paper and fabric. Do not slide the iron, just press. Hold for about 10 seconds, then lift. Let the paper cool for a moment and check to see if it adhered. You don't need to work at separating the paper and fabric, you just need to be sure the paper doesn't easily lift from the fabric.

You can iron all your pieces at the same time or iron them as you go.

Step 4 - Cutting the Fabric Pieces

The paper pieces you cut are the exact shape and size of the finished quilt block.

When you cut the fabric around the paper pieces, you should cut 1/4" beyond the paper. That 1/4" will be turned under and you'll stitch along that edge.
But that's not always true in hand applique. Because of the layers I mentioned above, some pieces or parts of pieces can be cut exactly on the line. In the photo to the right you can see that one leg has 1/4" of fabric to turn on along only one side and the curve at the bottom. The fabric on the left edge was cut along the edge of the paper pattern. That's because another piece will overlap it and cover that raw edge. You can see that the other leg has the 1/4" of fabric all the way around its edge. All of its edges will be turned under (except the top where the body will overlap it).

The photo at right shows both legs. You can see that the back leg stands alone and is turned under all the way around. The front leg is overlapped by another pattern piece.

Sometimes it's easy to see which pieces will be stitched first and have others overlapping them. Other times it's not so easy and you have to make a decision about how easy or hard it will be to do it one way or the other.

Step 5 Turning Under

The 1/4" of fabric around the outer edges of the pattern pieces will need to be turned under before they can be stitched to the background fabric.

Turn the fabric under along the edge of the freezer paper pattern and either iron it in place or finger press it (by scraping your using your finger or fingernail along the edge). Some pieces with tight curves may need to have a little glue from a water soluble glue stick dabbed into the fold.

Other posts in this series:
"A is for Airedale" Quilt Patterns Available Now!
Applique an Airedale, Part 1 - Tracing the Pattern
Applique an Airedale, Part 2 - Auditioning and Choosing Fabrics
Applique an Airedale, Part 3 - Cutting the Pattern Pieces
Applique an Airedale, Part 4 - Stitching, Finishing
Applique an Airedale, Part 5 - Photos

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Applique an Airedale, Part 2 - Auditioning and Choosing Fabrics

This is the second in a series of posts explaining how to applique a quilt block using patterns from "A is for Airedale." You can buy the patterns online.

Step 1
Audition Fabrics

Hannah helped me audition fabrics because I wanted ones close to her colors. You can see that some are too light, others too bright. Even though you may think your Airedale's tan parts are all the same color throughout, using a slightly lighter fabric for the parts that seem closer to the viewer and slightly darker fabrics for those toward the back (which will probably be in shadow) will give a feeling of depth and interest in the blocks. If you look at the individual blocks of "A is for Airedale", you can see what I mean. Bee members generally use batik or printed fabrics to give additional interest and depth.

It's a good idea to choose all the fabrics for your block before you begin. Lay them out together and see if you like the effect. Sometimes it might help to cut them to shape and lay them on the pattern where they belong to get a better idea how they will look together.

Step 2
Prepare the Background Fabric

Often the stitched Airedale appliques show up better on a light or medium light background. It's definitely easier to see where to place the applique pieces with a lighter background fabric.

Begin by cutting a piece of background fabric that is several inches larger than the pattern and than you want your finished block to measure. It should be large enough to cover the stabilizer on which you traced the pattern earlier. If the fabric is larger you will be able to applique beyond the border and have no worries about whether you'll have loose ends on the finished piece.

Carefully iron the background fabric so it is smooth and without creases.

Step 3
Layer and Attach the Background Fabric to the Stabilizer

Carefully lay the background fabric over the stabilizer pattern. Try to center the background fabric over the stabilizer pattern as much as possible and keep it smooth and unwrinkled. You can see why the pattern which was drawn on the stabilizer needed to be drawn with a dark pen.

When you stitch your applique, you will align the applique pieces with the pattern on the stabilizer and stitch through both the background fabric and the stabilizer.

With a needle and thread, use a running stitch to attach the background fabric to the stabilizer, keeping it smooth as you sew.

Next: Appliqueing a Quilt Block, Part 3 - Cutting the Pattern Pieces

Other posts in this series:
"A is for Airedale" Quilt Patterns Available Now!
Applique an Airedale, Part 1 - Tracing the Pattern
Applique an Airedale, Part 2 - Auditioning and Choosing Fabrics
Applique an Airedale, Part 3 - Cutting the Pattern Pieces
Applique an Airedale, Part 4 - Stitching, Finishing
Applique an Airedale, Part 5 - Photos

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Applique an Airedale, Part 1 - Tracing the Pattern

This post and several more will give step-by-step instructions explaining how to applique a quilt block by hand using the "A is for Airedale" quilt block patterns.

Note: there are links to specific products below. I have no association with any of the companies and don't recommend any particular brand. I included the links so you'll have an idea what you need when buy supplies.

Instructions below assume you have already purchased your pattern.

Materials needed
  • Paper pattern in the correct size. If your pattern is not the size you want it to be you can enlarge or reduce it with a photocopier (or you may be able to scan it and print it at a different size).
  • Stabilizer - water or heat soluble are available; or choose the tear-away kind

Step 1
Once you have your paper pattern ready, draw a border around it with pencil. This border will become the sewing line for finishing your block. If you make it larger than you want, you can always make it smaller but if you make it small, it will be harder to enlarge it.

Tape the paper pattern onto a window so you can trace it. It's important to have good light outside since you'll be tracing through two different translucent layers (separately). You can use a light box if you have one.

Step 2
Trace pattern onto stabilizer.

Stabilizer is a little like interfacing but, unlike interfacing, it will be removed when you've finished appliqueing. It gives you a stable background on which to sew your applique pieces. I suppose you could sew the pieces onto the background fabric without the stabilizer but if the fabric stretches or pulls, the applique pieces won't lie flat.

There are several different kinds and brands of stabilizer. Decide what you think will work best for you. If you're going to hand applique, you might like to have a lighter weight version. You can buy stablizer online or at most fabric stores.

Cut your stabilizer larger than you want your finished block to be and large enough so that you have at least 1" all the way around beyond the border you drew on your pattern. For instance, if you want a finished 10" block, cut your stablizer at least 12" x 12". This will allow working room.

Tape the stabilizer over the pattern on the window. Using a dark, indelible marker such as a Sharpie or Zig Writer, trace the pattern, including borders, onto the stabilizer. It's important that you work accurately on these tracings so that your finished applique looks like the pattern. When finished tracing onto the stabilizer, carefully remove the stabilizer and lay it aside.

Step 3
Trace pattern onto freezer paper.

Tape or very securely hold freezer paper over the paper pattern with the waxy size toward the window and the paper side toward you. You'll know if you've got it wrong because you can't draw on the waxy side. This freezer paper will need to be moved as you trace the pattern.

Using a pencil, carefully and accurately trace the pattern giving each section of the pattern its own space. Look at which parts of the pattern have confined sections so you can see which will become individual pattern pieces.

In the tracing to the right you can see that the saddle and upper tail were one piece; the near back leg and tail, another; each front paw was its own pattern piece; etc. At this point you can decide whether you want to applique or embroider the small parts like ears and nose. Bee members often embroider the eyebrows and sometimes the nose.

If you can't visualize this now, you'll be able to see it better in the next part of instructions.

Other posts in this series
"A is for Airedale" Quilt Patterns Available Now!
Applique an Airedale, Part 1 - Tracing the Pattern
Applique an Airedale, Part 2 - Auditioning and Choosing Fabrics
Applique an Airedale, Part 3 - Cutting the Pattern Pieces
Applique an Airedale, Part 4 - Stitching, Finishing
Applique an Airedale, Part 5 - Photos

Friday, October 28, 2011

Rocket Dog's TuckButtRun

My mum thinks this Rocket Dog is an Airedale doing a tuckbuttrun. Do you think so, too?

I think I look like that when I do tuckbuttruns. My ears go back and my tails sticks out. I go super speedy fast. I go so fast that my mum can't take a picture of me. She tried to take a video of me once when I was tuckbuttrunning but all that showed up was bits of me. I'm fast and she's slow.

Do you do tuckbuttruns?

Posted by me, Hannah.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Do Not Forget Me!

Most mornings my mum and I walk with our friend Janni.
When we first get up my mum makes me go outside
and she goes back inside. Sometimes I'm afraid she'll forget me.
I stand at the breezeway door waiting for it to open.

Then I spot my mum through the window.

If she doesn't let me in immediately
I tell her how important it is for me to come in because
I don't want her to go for a walk without me.

If she still doesn't let me in, I start to grumble,
then I complain, then I bark, then I howl.
My mum's never left without me but sometimes I'm afraid she will.

I love to go for walks because
I get to see and sniff those nice, soft, chewy cats.

Posted by Hannah.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Man of the Hour - Norah Jones

"It's him or me." That's what he said.
But I can't choose between a vegan and a pothead,
So I chose you because you're sweet
And you give me lots of lovin' and you eat meat.
And that's how you became my only man of the hour.

You never lie and you don't cheat,
And you don't have any baggage tied to your four feet.
Do I deserve to be the one who will feed you breakfast, lunch, and dinner
And take you to the park at dawn?
Will you really be my only man of the hour?

I know you'll never bring me flowers.
Flowers they will only die.
And though we'll never take a shower together
I know you'll never make me cry.
You never argue, don't even talk
And I like the way you let me lead you
When we go outside and walk.

Will you really be my only man of the hour?
My only man of the hour, my only man of the hour.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Gill Brothers Airedale

Isn't he a handsome fellow? I found him in the August 8, 1913, edition of The Bemidji (Minnesota) Pioneer.

I love finding Airedales in ads, no matter the year. I know they were very popular in the 1920s but I hadn't realized that they were already popular in the 19-teens. These days it's uncommon to see Airedales in ads -- but I know all ADT lovers perk up when we see them.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

For the Love of Airedales - Help Some of Them Get Home At Last

Some of you may already know that I participate in the online Airedale Rescue Quilting Bee. Every year we collaborate to create a quilt focused on Airedales. This year's quilt is called "Home at Last" in honor of the rescue process and the help given by hundreds of volunteers in various Airedale rescue groups across the U.S. The proceeds from donations for this quilt will help homeless Airedales find homes at last. I hope you can find it in your heart and pocketbook to make a donation of $5.00 or more. In return, you'll have an opportunity for this beautiful quilt to be yours.

Go to Airedale Quilting Bee to learn more about "Home at Last" and the ladies who made it. The Airedales will be grateful and so will I and the rest of the quilters.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Hannah is not a lover of baths but at least she doesn't fight against them. Into the tub she goes and I pour water, add shampoo, wash, then rinse.

As I was shampooing her today she kept turning her head into my arms. I asked her to please turn her head the other way. She suggested I just move my arms out of her way!

Finally rinsed and slightly dried, she hopped out of the tub and shook.

We got the job done and she looks and feels great!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

She's Up to It Again!

When I heard noises outside the window I suspected Hannah was up to it again, but by the time I got to the breezeway to snap some photos, she'd stopped digging and was standing in her hole. She walked away to investigate, returned a few minutes later, and settled very comfortably into her cool spot.

Why is it I can never catch her digging?!

I know some people don't like their dogs to dig but Airedales are diggers and Hannah confines her holes to behind the bushes next to the house. We have no mines in our yard.

Uh oh! What did I just say? I may be in for it now!

Friday, May 13, 2011

"A is for Airedale" Quilt Patterns Available Now!

If you didn't already know, "A is for Airedale" was the Airedale Rescue Quilting Bee's offering for 2010. It garnered over $10,000.00 for National Airedale Rescue last year.

Now - oh, joy! - the Bee has decided to sell the patterns for each block, individually or as a set. The money will support the production of the quilt (fabric, batting, shipping, etc.) and continued donations to National Airedale Rescue.

Can't you imagine a wall-hanging that spells your dear 'dale's name? Or how about turning the letters into an Airedale alphabet coloring book for your child or grandchild? Perhaps you'd like to make a pillow. Or a tote bag. Wouldn't these images look great in a scrapbook? The uses for these patterns are limited only by your imagination.
For me, one of the joys of these patterns is the Airedale antic depicted in each block. A is for Airedale, B is for Bounce, C is for Catch, ... M is for Mischief (and can't our Airedales find/make Mischief?!), N is for Nosepoke, ... T is for Tuckbuttrun,.... Some of them make me laugh out loud. I know you'll find a favorite letter or two as you view them and you won't be able to resist buying a few - or the whole set!

Instructions for making an Airedale applique:
Applique an Airedale, Part 1 - Tracing the Pattern
Applique an Airedale, Part 2 - Auditioning and Choosing Fabrics
Applique an Airedale, Part 3 - Cutting the Pattern Pieces
Applique an Airedale, Part 4 - Stitching, Finishing
Applique an Airedale, Part 5 - Photos

These images are copyright and it would be illegal to copy them without paying for them at the "A is for Airedale" Pattern site. Thank you for your understanding.