Welcome back. We’re at day five and have already accomplished so much!
For today’s fifth and final post in this series, we’ll put that knowledge to good use once again as we add the finishing touches to our piece.
Quilting the background – SCHMETZ needles and Sulky thread make it easy
I’ll be using a SCHMETZ quilting needle size 75/11 for all of today’s finishing work. This is such a versatile needle that I have to say it’s one of my favorites.
I’ll be doing some free motion quilting, so I’ve left the same darning foot on my machine as yesterday.
The background of the panel needs to be quilted to make it lay flat and for the heron to stand out.
First I used a green Sulky rayon thread to outline the tall reeds. Because we see the thread it helps to add a bit of visual weight to the bottom portion of the panel as a nice counterbalance to the heron.
Next, I used the same Sulky rayon and outline stitched around the lily pads and the lilies that were not thread painted.
You don’t need to be too precise with your stitching so this is another great way to practice your free motion quilting skills.
The water and sky need to be quilted next.
The fabric itself gives a wonderful design to follow for the quilting. The heron needs to be the ‘star’ so thread colors need to match the background so as not to take the focus away from all of your wonderful thread painting.
I chose to do the remainder of my quilting with Sulky Invisible thread. This thread is a very fine clear filament so all the texture of my quilting will show but not the thread. Though you can put the Invisible thread in the bobbin I used one filled with Sulky Poly Deco.
I don’t need to change my needle as the SCHMETZ 75/11 quilting needle works beautifully with SulkyInvisible thread.
I followed the swirl of the sky on the upper left of the panel and some of the curving lines on the remainder.
Part of the water was quilted following the curved lines back and forth and the remainder with a wavy design.
Quilting the borders
To straight line quilt the borders, I attached a walking foot to my machine. This foot has feed teeth that will help move the quilt evenly through my machine.
As there are so many different colors in the inner and outer border, I decided to quilt these with my Sulky Invisible thread as well. You’ll want to quilt the inner border first. I wanted this to be a visual frame of the thread painted panel so opted for very simple quilting in the ditch.
For the outer border, I quilted all of the diagonal seams. If you quilt in a chevron pattern and pivot at the inner and outer points you can quilt almost continuously around the border.
The finish line
The quilting is done and I need to bind the piece.
You’ll need five 2½” strips of your chosen fabric to make a continuous binding.
The binding is the final focal point, just like the frame of a painting. I used a dark blue fabric from Naturescapes Blue Heron grouping that looks like water.
There are several excellent QUILTsocial posts on how to construct and attach the binding to your piece. Two of my favorites are Binding a quilt and 7 essential tips for sewing the binding on a quilt by machine.
Gütermann 50wt cotton thread in both the needle and bobbin were used to piece and attach my binding. This strong, long-staple cotton thread is ideal for piecing and construction.
I continued to use my SCHMETZ quilting needle to attach the binding. This needle is strong and sharp enough to quickly pierce the multiple layers of fabric and batting resulting in perfect points even along the very edge of the quilt.
I hope you have enjoyed this week’s project as much as I have enjoyed creating it for you!
I hope you’ll join me next time for a new adventure. Until then keep having fun using beautiful threads and don’t forget to change your needle!
This is part 5 of 5 in this series.
Go back to part 4: Step 4 – thread painting for incredible lifelike detail
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