Wednesday, January 11, 2006

House Fans

Remember a post last week about thread color and choosing hand or machine quilting? I have had my happy scrappy houses top done for eons, but I was always stumped with how/what to quilt on it. It is one of those quilts that is bright and scrappy, and yet I didn't want to change thread colors with each section of every house. No matter what I did, the thread is going to contrast somewhere.

This also wasn't a quilt that I wanted to hand quilt. The quilt is 78X90 and if I'm going to hand quilt something THAT big, it is going to be something I WANT to spend that much time on. It didn't call for it to me, though if it did, I think I would have quilted it with black thread so it would show up against all the colors.

I loaded this yesterday afternoon and because I couldn't choose just one color, I chose varigated rainbow. After doing the first row, I didn't like it, but you know what, it was too late and I was not going to pick it out! The thread was a heavier jean-stitch type thread, and on the right quilt it would have looked great, on this one, it just looked SO obvious. I also had nightmares with skipped stitches, and broken thread. I was about to pull my hair out by the time it was done.

When I got it off the machine, the quilt relaxed a bit, and now I think it isn't that bad. Remember, no matter WHAT color I used, it was going to contrast in most places. I think the only way to avoid this would be to use a monofilament in things that are really differing color wise, but I'm not a big fan of monofilament. I have had some luck with a thread called "nymo" in a light blue. It's a multi-filament nylon, but it has semi-opaque qualities to it so it really blends in quilting scrappy quilts. Some people want only natural fibers in their quilts, so I've only used it on my own scrap quilts, and for a busy busy multi color quilt, I think it is the best out there for blending and not sticking out like a sore thumb.

The house quilt has a child-like color-crayon feel to it to me anyway, so I think I can live with the varigated thread. Though in the back of my mind, this little voice is saying "black perle cotton.....do it by hand"! That way there would have only been dots and dashes where the stitches show, not the thick solid lines that are more like stem-stitching that you get with machine quilting. Looks like oscar likes it anyway!

And this is my baby! This is Jeff, he will be 16 on the 25th. I snapped this pic this morning while he was emptying the dishwasher, just because I can never capture him for a picture, he hates having his pic taken and avoids it at all costs! He is 6'1" and in the 9th grade. :c)



  1. Bonnie -

    I think the fans look great on the wonky houses. I have 16 little baggies filled with house parts the kids in my DD's class picked out for their houses. I want to finish it by May to give to the teacher as a thank you gift.


  2. Bonnie, the fans look amazing! I'm really thinking I might need to get this template!

  3. Great picture of Jeff, thanks for capturing him..*VBS* And I like the fans on the wonky houses. I think the quilting will stand the test of time just fine. It's always a hard decision what color to use on scrappy quilts. Not so much when you hand quilt, but when you have to pick a color for machine quilting. I'm having that same dilemna right now..but had forgotten about varigated..*VBG* Thanks Bonnie!!
    Have a great time on your retreat!!! Hugs, Finn

  4. Eons - You only finished that quilt a few months ago.... (I still plan to do one with fussy cut cats in the doors and windows = "Cat House.")

    Lovely quilting, the fans were a good choice.

    Just remember, "Done is better that perfect." and that baby is done!

    Cute cat & son too!

  5. Bonnie the fans really set this quilt off! Great job! Thanks for all the inspiration! You have inspired me to start my own blog.
    Thanks! Laura

  6. I love the fans on the house quilt Bonnie! Hard to say about the thread since I cna't see it...but it looks GREAT!!!
    PS...how do you do your fans on the longarm?

  7. Nice to see Jeff :c) !!

    Your fans are amazing beautifull !

  8. I can't see the thread from the pictures, but I imagine that the variegated would look great since it's a scrappy quilt anyway. Yep - it's official, fans look great on ANY kind of quilt!! Nice to see a picture of Jeff - I can see his mum in him, although I haven't seen your DH.

  9. You make way too many tops to hand quilt them all. It looks fun, bright and it's HOUSES with FANS. Bet it's not even going on a wall anyway, right? Use it, wash it and love it. From here, it looks marvelous.
    Your "baby" is awfully sweet.

  10. I love the look of the fans on your houses! It turned out wonderful! Yeah, can't tell the varigated in the picture but from a galloping horse it looks awesome! I say lets celebrate it is done and looks wonderful!

  11. Thanks for letting us meet Jeff! For not liking his pic taken, he certainly does well if front of the camera! Guys!

    Your houses are terrific, Bonnie. The fans...bravo! And Oscar looks right at home. Smart cat!


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