Mad In Pursuit Notebook


Handstitching: The Book

5.9.2014 [cont'd from 5.1.14] I "finished" my handstitching practice. I've only made 8 blocks so far but (a) wanted to try something in a different format and (b) wanted to see what they look like in the foldout book format suggested by Carol Ann Waugh.*

Doodling with embroidery stitches is pretty easygoing and doing a 3" square goes fast. But turning it all into a cloth book gets a little complicated. First, because embroidering the lettering seemed to take longer than the image, I decided to teach myself how to do free-motion handwriting on the sewing machine. My first effort is below. You can see it has some charm.

So I made "quilt sandwiches" by backing the embroidery squares with Pellon Fusible Fleece and a square of cotton print. Then I added my captions to the last three. Changed thread from ivory to dark blue and decorated each square with free-motion quilting. Good practice for that skill.

After each block was quilted, I trimmed the block to 6-1/2" square and finished the edges with a rattail binding (see this YouTube video for a how-to). This binding is pretty easy -- but, like everything, takes time. After each square was bound, I zigzag-stitched it to the previous one.

Well, yeah, you could say they look like a bunch of potholders stitched together. But that would be mean. I like that my learning process can be packaged up into a neat little book -- a journal for a small journey with needle and thread.

* (Carol's how to start and how to finish into a cloth book.)