Monday, February 14, 2022

Fan Quilting - Turning Corners!

Happy Valentine's Day Monday, everyone!

I hope you've had a great weekend, and time to rest and restore.

Things are busy here with Quiltville Inn in full swing, and I so much look forward to my feet up with needle and thread time in the evenings after dinner.  It just smooths everything over and even contributes to a better night sleep I believe.

I also love the many questions coming in about how I'm doing this or that - the fact that you are interested enough to ask a question means I am not alone in wanting to do this!

I am also up to learning new things - ALWAYS!  So I am trying an experiment.

I used yellow chalk wheel when marking my Oak Leaf applique quilt - the one that sat partially quilted for years before I finally kicked myself into gear to finish it.

I have used the yellow chalk wheel before to mark quilts - but it was always on colored fabric, not on white muslin.  And guess what happened after washing?  There is still yellow chalk under the stitch dimples, barely visible, but it's there.  

I used the blue wash-out markers for quilting when drawing my border quilting design.  That washed out, but the tips on those don't stay "fine" for every long when drawing through a stencil and they can get kind of expensive.

In come the Crayola Ultra Clean markers for kids!

My friend Barbara who is here with the February Quiltvillians has used these for marking her hand quilting lines FOREVER and it has always washed out.  Sometimes it may take a couple of washings, but there has never been a problem.

So I drew up this little test sample and threw it in with Saturday's load of dishtowels I was refreshing.


Then Sylvia (who is also at the retreat and joined in on our conversation) said "Now try it on dark fabric and see if any ghost lines are left!

I drew with the ones that would show up at least, not all did.

I ran another dark load and threw this in.


And since that last quilting blue wash-out pen is out of ink, I'm moving on, living on the edge, and marking with these.  The quilt won't be washed until the quilting is complete - so they will be staying with me for a while.

This also gives me a chance to show you how I mark fans when it comes to turning a corner.

Fans begin in one corner and run off the opposite edge.  They stop where they stop.  Check out the "partial fan" where the next repeat just hits the wall.

With hoop removed and ready for marking the next side.

Marking the second side.

I generally only mark 4 fan repeats at a time, giving me just enough for my evening stitching ahead.

Could you mark the WHOLE quilt at once? Certainly!

Getting those stitches in - 2nd side underway.

Things end where they end.  there really is no lining up, or centering, or making things "match"  It's the perfect "It is what it is" quilting pattern - the texture is always great, and each quilt that you quilt turns out that much different based on quilt side, fan arc depth, how many lines per fan, etc.

Also - there are ZERO rules about quilting over applique.  Do it if you want, don't do it if you don't.

I can say that of all of the antique quilts I've studied over my life time - the ones that had no stitching over the applique (Or outlining on top of the applique, or detail stitching on top of the applique through the quilt) have a much higher possibility of eventually just falling OFF the quilt.  Something needs to anchor those applique pieces through all of the other layers if you really want them to stay put over time.

I was inspired to quilt through my applique because of other examples I've handled.  The applique lasted, because it was anchored with the quilting.  But it's your choice.

These other posts may give you more information on how quilts go round and round and round from the outside edge of the quilt toward the center where they just end wherever they touch.

You can use stencils or you can even quilt freehand!

More on Baptist Fans:

where was Mabel?

On the back of the couch while I quilted.  LOL!

The tail blur says it all!

Meals continue to be a hit at Quiltville Inn!

There is much cheering to happy quilt top finishes!

Tonni just had her last borders to go on her Rhododendron Trail!

Renee is on a roll!

Charlotte's Rhododendron Trail in greens and garnets.  Awesome!

Christine is Wonky Wishes making All the Way!

I spy some beautiful Moth in the Window blocks from the Addicted to Scraps book along with some Garlic Knots in progress!

We did a bit of Super Bowl construction of our own at the Cabin, where we are buried in the Season of Mud.

Stepping Stones weren't going to be enough!

The Hubster found a listing for a guy who was selling recycled AstroTurf from school football fields.

We needed a way to walk without being so muddy - and though this is temporary it can be rolled up and moved to where we need it to be.

Farmers are using it for their dairy cows as they go into the barn for milking - it keeps them out of the mud.

Gardeners are using this between their rows of plants to keep the weeds down and keep them out of the mud as well.

So why not use it for the mud alone?

Partial end zone going down the muddy hill.  LOL!

It has helped with getting the dogs in and out - I don't care how silly it looks.  Take that - mud season!

One other thing to do today - we are drawing for the winner of the paper back copy of Bruce Leonard's new novel, Quilt City Murders!

Quilting, Mayhem and Murder! Find Quilt City Murders in both the paperback and Kindle version HERE.

Who is entry 2448 out of 4796 entries?

Susan Carlson!  Congrats!

Susan, please look for the email I sent to the address you left with our entry.  Reply with your shipping address and I'll get the paperback copy of Quilt City Murders out to you.

I know you are going to enjoy it!

It's my last full day with the February Quiltvillians.  It's been a wonderful nearly-a-week and we have had so much fun together.

It's just super cold out this morning  Our high is only hovering at 31 today and we still have "Quilts Over the Porch Rail" photos to do!  We'll be bundled up!  At least the sun is shining.

How about your own weekend!  Did you get some stitches in to anything?  Did you quilt your way through Super Bowl Sunday?

Quiltville Quote of the Day -

If you can't solve it, it isn't a problem - it's reality.
And sometimes reality is the hardest thing to understand and the thing that takes the longest to realize.
Put your focus on where you are going to go from here.

Take a baby step in the right direction today!

Have a wonderful Monday, everyone -



  1. Hubby likes me to watch the SB with him. It's okay if my team is playing but when it's not.............. I didn't quilt but had my phone and watched some youtube videos I needed to watch for my new - to-me longarm. I also came into possession of 11 bobbins that were filled with very old thread. The bobbins were in excellent shape so I emptied the old broken threads out of them while occassionally making the correct grunts and 'oofs' to go with the game!

  2. ogoodgrief! Your creativity and problem-solving (both you and hubster) shows the grit and determination it takes to weather the "storm" (reads: winter) in the Blue Ridge...makes me embarrassed (not really) to tell we had 85* sunny weekend in Carlsbad, CA and it made for lazy, sleepy afternoon... LOVE your hand quilting and the Baptist Fan, it's "inspiring" me a bit... again, thanks for your contribution to my life and for sharing all the boundless happenings.... wishing you good health and happy days, mud free... Cats.

  3. Thanks for all the tidbits and tips you share. Love the markers and the Baptist fans. Still waiting to see Ivy and Zoey on your legs with Mabel behind your head. LOL!

  4. I love using the Crayola Ultra Clean Markers ! I've used them for several years and they wash out beautifully, only had to rewash one quilt. The fine line markers are perfect to use with stencils and the array of colors will work on all colors of fabric.

  5. Bonnie,

    Blue Dawn Dish Detergent by itself or in combination with Peroxide will remove the yellow marks from the quilt you talked about in this post. The ultimate stain remover that actually works on a seriously set in stain! Never buy oxyclean again!
    The mixture is:
    1 tsp. Dawn dishwashing detergent
    3-4 tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide
    couple tablespoons of baking soda.
    Scrub on with a scrubbing brush

    1. Do you know if this will work on removing an ink stain. My friend accidentally grabbed a micro perma pen thinking it was her marker. She is still quilting on her project so it will be a little while before she can wash it. It is not a real large area but is very prominent and I caught her just in time before she marked more. Thank you for any suggestions you can send our way, I will be seeing her tomorrow.

  6. Your hand quilting project is looking great!

    I love the vintage quilt behind today's quote. I'm two feet away from finishing the binding on a throw made from a similar 'Great Granny Squared' block. It's all from shirt scraps, and was inspired by a vintage block you posted behind a daily quote a few years ago. It's wild and busy and it makes me happy. ;)

  7. Oh, Mabel is so adorable sitting behind you on the couch! She must be so much happier now with your family and surely feels the love! With Zoey and Ivy on your lap Mabel has found a good spot to be near you :) So happy for you all!

  8. I use the washable Crayola markers a lot. The first time a spritzed a quilt with water in order to block it, they ran and freaked me out! But they all washed out. Just thought I’d save a few quilters from getting that surprise.

  9. Baptist fans are my go-to quilting pattern when I can't figure out how else to hand quilt a top.

  10. Love pictures of Mabel and Zoey. She really has adopted her new home and her new friend Zoey. Love the tail wagging and happy looks on their faces in the second picture. Enjoy the day. Happy Valentine day.

  11. Bonnie, I so enjoy your post every day. It's like visiting a friend. Learning new quilting tips and techniques, enjoying the antics of your pets, sharing in the ups and downs of daily life in Quiltville. I especially love your quotes, and save them to a file on my computer. Today's quote was wonderful, but I liked your own summary even better: "If you can't solve it, it isn't a problem -- it's reality." THAT belongs on a sampler! :-) To the point and oh, so true!
    Thanks for your daily inspiration.

  12. In my initial testing of the Crayola markers, I ironed over them and the marks still washed out. The perfect miracle marker.
    Cris in MT

  13. Thanks for the marker tip! I'll be trying them.

  14. Once, after a visit from the grandkids, a regular Crayola marker got mixed in with my washable ones. Needless to say, I grabbed that one to mark a quilt. But! even those marks washed out! I was so worried, but amazed. And it only took one extra washing. I wish the markers didn't look so much alike.....

  15. Thanks for sharing the results of your marking test. I am leery of the blue markers. Love the Retreaters show n tell. Have a Happy Valentine's Day ❤️

  16. So happy to read this. I have been using washable markers for my hand applique and hand quilting for years, in fact, one of the quilts sat since 2016 and was just finished and washed. Background was creams, marker was every color, my friends had bets going. Everything came out! And I am hand quilting baptist fans over hand applique right now. I love the texture of this quilting!

  17. I have used green and only green flair markers to mark my quilts. Even after years and years on the quilt, they still wash out. I always do a test before I use a new one just to make sure that the ink didn't change.

  18. Wishing you a Happy Valentine's Day. Enjoy reading your blog and making your quilts. Really hope I help out in your making the mystery quilt possible each year by reading each day even though I don't comment often. I love doing the mysterys.

  19. Love the moth in the window blocks!

  20. Interesting...I always wondered whether or not to quilt over an applique! I don't quilt over an applique when I'm hand quilting. But I just sent a huge pieced and appliqued quilt off to a long arm quilter and was curious if I did the "right thing". Feeling better now knowing that it's ok to quilt over those appliques...exhale.

  21. Our high today was only 15 degrees, so your 31 would feel like a heat wave.

  22. What a find with the clean crayola markers. I have had these around for a long time for other projects never thought about using them for my quilting. Also I imagine Toni is not at the Inn but what color is she going to use for her backing. Her quilt colors look a lot like mine. I thought it was mine in your blog! Beautiful. Hope mine looks that good.

  23. Another user of Crayola Ultra-Wash markers here as well, and I just replenished my supply. The last quilt took three washings which was unusual but it had a lot of metallic fabrics so wonder if that was the reason. I've never had a problem however removing them totally.

  24. After this post, I suspect there is going to be a run on those Crayola washout markers. LOL.

  25. I love the way the your quilting over the appliqué looks! I have one with a similar flower appliqué border but it also has yo-yos appliqué for some of the flower centers. Any suggestions?

  26. Hi Bonnie:
    Getting your posts is really screwed up. Sometimes I get them in the evening. This one I got TUES. Morning. It is a Yahoo thing.

    I did get a little stitching in on Sunday evening. I got most of the way around the stitching down of the binding on my serging QAYG quilt. Now it will wait till next Monday, when I will have Friend/former co-worker/ instructor Nancy help me w/ a new binding technique. Next to trim up 8 more blocks for my Curvaceous cabins. Then on to finish sewing rows together on my Patriotic All Stars quilt.

    Today, I am getting ready to eat a bite, then go out w/ the snow blower and re-open pathways to the generator, propane tank, pellet Fuel stack, fuel tank and compost pile. We are to get another 3-5 inches of snow/ice mix tonight. Such Fun. At least I should get my driveway plowed tomorrow. But it is to snow all day, too!

    Kasilof, AK
    Where we are in the throes of winter; snow and ice all week again!

  27. Thank you so much for the quilting tips and inspiration

  28. Love your posts! We had two rescue dogs that were great friends. They loved to play in the bushes together and all we could see were two fluffy tails wagging joyfully!

  29. Please. Please continue to take pictures of the retreat design walls and the quilts they bring with them for their beds. It is a great inspiration. I make quilt tops for Victoria Quilts for cancer patients. Since I am on a distribution list for scraps. ALL of my quilts re scrappy. Sometimes I need your pictures to just get started on the next top. Thank you. Pat from Canada

  30. I like heat erasable pens from Amazon - 4 pens: red, white, blue , black with 20 refills. come out with a touch of the steam iron - never to be seen again (except that its not 30 degrees here, so can't attest to that.


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