Sunday, December 27, 2015

Class with Maureen van Dam

Merry Christmas and I hope you all got what you wanted. Two years ago I spent Christmas day sewing with my Mum. We decided to do the same again. My girls are both in Sydney so there was only us to please - and that's what pleased us. This is what I finished.

I took a class with Maureen van Dam recently. What a lovely lady! She first came on my radar many years ago with a quilt in The Big Quilt show at Northart. It was a quilt she made with fabric she had brought from her homeland of South Africa. There was something about that quilt that I remembered it all those years. It was the clever way she had put the African fabrics together that just shouted Africa to me. It was more than just the fabrics. Anyway, her work is quite different now but still that same sense of design. She said that she didn't know what I was doing in her class, what with my recent win in the Dorothy Collard Challenge. Believe me, I've still got a lot to learn!

Flowers and leaves painted on plain white cotton
Fusible web applied, cut out and appliqued on to one of my hand painted fabrics. (Apologies for the blurry photo)

The background was quilted with a leaf design and curls.

Inserting the zip
This is how I prefer to insert zips for cushions. Cut the back in two pieces (halfway or not, whatever fits in the fabric I have.) Stitch the two bits back together with a normal stitch length for the first couple of inches, about 5cm. Then put in a lock stitch and increase the stitch length for most of the seam, finishing off with a lock stitch and normal stitch length. Press the seam open and pin the zip so that the teeth are right on the seam. Stitch around from the front with a zipper foot. I used a zip that was longer than I needed. When I got to the last part of the second side, leaving the needle down I unpicked part of the tacking stitches and pulled the zipper thingy (I'm sure it has a name) past the needle and then stitched the last part. Then it's just a case of unpicking all the tacking stitches and you have a perfect zip.
Stitching the last part of the zip insertion.

Why do I have a photo of me with Elvis? We had a 50s party at work. This is my 50s Walkaway dress. It doesn't scale up to a plus size well! I have no idea why 70s Elvis came to a 50s party. But the good news is that I had a lot of fabric left over, just the ideal colour to finish off my cushion. I've been itching to try this unusual finish for a cushion. I put the back and the cushion front wrong side together and stay-stitched all the way around. Then I applied a binding in the same way that you would do to a quilt. The quilt had quite a stiff stabiliser on the back and corners would never had turned out nicely if I had made this the traditional way.

Here is is without the pillow inside so that you can see how beautiful those corners are. It's going on my bed but I think this treatment would hold up to everyday use.

1 comment:

  1. What fun Rona, and your cushion looks too good to use. Love it


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