I've had a couple of folks ask how I put together "If You Walk By." Fortunately I'd taken pictures during the process, half-thinking I might do a photo-journal of it, but that idea got put by the wayside this past week while I was completely immersed in work. (It was an "event" week that tied me up day and evening, even though I was home.)
So here it is, such as it is. I would definitely do a few things differently next time but I do want to use the basic process again.
Rather than having a solid background, I wanted there to be distinct changes in the texture to give it a little more interest. This meant either piecing or fusing. I choose fusing whenever possible, especially when I'm under a deadline. So I decided to create freezer paper "templates," cut everything out, fuse it back together, and then satin-stitch over the "seams" to create line and definition.
I also had the purple and yellow thing in my head from the get-go, and later realized I could also use this for one of my assignments in my Quilt Design Study Group. We're working our way through this book and the assignment was on complementary colors. Bingo. Since I'm a bit of a purist on my homework assignments, I needed to also use purple or yellow thread for the surface design. Fortunately, I had a great variegated yellow in my thread collection.
The rest of this photo-journal will be in the captions to the photos.
By the way, you'll note in the fused piece above that alot of the joins between colors aren't clean. The beauty of the satin stitch was that I knew most of that would be covered up. I did use my thread snips to clean up some of the edges, but not much.
I did a couple of tester stitches on my practice quilt sandwich I keep by my sewing machine for just this purpose--I wanted to make sure I had the width of the satin stitch where I wanted it. I then used the satin stitch on all the "seams". I haven't done a lot of satin stitching to date so I was pretty happy with the way that part of it turned out. Again, in retrospect, I'd have worked out the center a little differently--the way the stitching came together in the middle of the flower is a bit awkward. However, I will say that satin-stitching is fairly forgiving. I was able to go back in and stitch over a few places with new seams to clean it up some.
I don't have a picture of the original binding. I tried a new-to-me technique of cutting the backing enough bigger to fold it and bring it to the front, and then machine stitch it down so it's self-binding. I used the satin stitch there too. Hated the results. The stitching skipped over bulkier areas and I couldn't get the corners to look like clean miters. I set the project aside for a day because the binding really ruined the whole project and I wasn't sure how to fix it at the moment. In the interim, I finished a project I'd been working on for Laura Wasilowsky's Craftsy class and did her fused binding method. Bingo! I went back to this project and just fused a binding over the top of the original satin-stitched binding. Completely covered it up and looked a zillion times better. A little decorative stitch with that same yellow variegated thread, and I was suddenly happy with the project again.
So now I'm adding to my repertoire of "how to fix errors quickly" (a repertoire which includes Sharpies and rotary cutters), fused bindings. Very handy.
Again, there are a few things I'll do differently the next time I do this, but I am planning on using this method again. I like having the look of a pieced background without having to figure out how to do the piecing. 'Cause I'm just kinda lazy that way.
And now, back to working on #scrapitude.