Friday, June 7, 2013

2013 Calico Quilters Guild Challenge "Queenie"

I have mentioned my Challenge for my local guild on occasion and last night we revealed the products of our efforts.  There were many great pieces and I will give you a peek at them when they are hung at our Quilt Show later this month.  That will be the best opportunity for me to get photos of them all together.

We took our challenge from the book "Art Quilts-Dealing With a Full Deck".

Each member drew a playing card and had to interpret the card into fabric, there were only a few rules.
1.  The quilt must measure 18" x 28'
2.  Must meet the definition of a, batting and backing and layers sewn together.
3.  Backing and binding must be red or blue like regular playing card
4.  Must have rounded corners like a playing card.
5.  Must have a label with at least our name.
You could make your "card" as easy or as difficult to interpret as you wished.  Here is my Challenge.

Did you guess the card I drew?

I have always loved literature and it was one of my majors in college.  My favorite is British literature and when I drew the Queen of Hearts of course I HAD to make the queen from "Alice in Wonderland", which is the shortened title for "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland", the 1865 novel by Charles Lutwige Dodgson or as we know him, Lewis Carroll.
As you look at it you probably wonder "What took her so long".  Well, in my defense I tried a number of techniques to see how they reacted as an experiment to use them on my cancer quilt.  I had to toss aside a few things and redo as they were not very satisfactory.  Taking the time to try these techniques will make my cancer quilt go faster and easier.  I now know some things I definitely will and will not do on the cancer quilt.
I will try to explain in detail my techniques:
I'll start at her crown, first I had to make a special trip to find some special fabric for the crown and adornments for use after she was quilted and bound.

Of course while I was there I had to purchase a new book...because it was on sale...although totally unrelated to the project at hand.

Although I do plan to use some of these techniques on my Cancer Quilt, so it was a good purchase.
Oh dear I'm rambling again, back to the crown.  I had decided I did not want to use fusible applique for this project but neither did I want to applique by hand so I tried my hand at turning the edges under as for hand applique but using a very small blanket stitch to tack it down.  The non-traditional fabric I chose for the crown was NOT user friendly for applique but I willed it into submission.  I traced the area on to freezer paper and then I used a glue stick to adhere the edges to the back of the crown and found that even though I applied a small dab in just a few places it made the area "hard" and that is unacceptable for my Cancer Quilt so the next piece will use another technique.  I found the small blanket stitch using rayon embroidery machine thread to be fairly successful but not perfect.  The bite it took into the applique piece is ok but I need to improve it, but what I didn't like was the stitches that ran along the edge,  No matter how hard I tried, they still showed.  But I remembered a technique by Suzanne Marshall that uses a line of embroidery stitching along the edge of applique.  Here is a closeup of the crown.

I thought the black outline enhanced the design, thus taking care of my visible stitch issue.
On to the face.
Queenie needed expression since she was not the kindest and gentlest of Queens so I wasn't sure how to achieve that, so I pressed under the edges and secured her in position with a few stitches, proceeded to stuff her face with fiber-fil, continue with the applique and before applying the dress, I pulled the stuffing out to give her contour to her face.  Fairly successful application but not sure it will be used on the Cancer Quilt,
Don't you like her earring?  Her eye was one of the more difficult aspects for me since I am NOT an artist.  It is satin stitch embroidery .
For the white satin bustle, I used red rayon embroidery thread and tear-away under the satin to create the little red hearts with the aid of Jan, my 6600P Janome.
Of course the yellow is rickrack and the same rickrack braided and applied with rayon embroidery thread and just stitched with a straight stitch to give it dimension. The little blue and yellow piece is bias tape stitched with a double needle. I made the blue stripe fabric with white Kona cotton and 1/8" grosgrain ribbon and just straight stitched down the middle.  
For quilting I used an 80/20 batting and used a little curvy design with little hearts sprinkled here and there.
After taking her off the long arm, I took her to the 6600P and did some quilting around individual parts of her dress.  Oh her dress, I tried the stuffing technique to create a flowing dress, but I was disappointed with the results when I pulled the stuffing like I had done the face, so won't be doing that again.
The binding and backing are the same fabric...a houndstooth check in red and white.
Of course when all was finished I applied her rhinestones, this was my first rhinestone adventure so it took me a little bit to get the hang of keeping those little things where I wanted them while I placed the heat setter on them.  And on a bumpy quilted piece that was a little challenging at times.
But she is complete and I am pleased with her, so I am going to link up today with Can I Get A Whoop Whoop over at Confessions of A Fabric Addict.  You can find her link here.  Now I am off on another journey.  Hopefully the next one won't take quite as long.  Where has your journey taken you?


  1. What a great job on the Queen of Hearts.

  2. you did a really good job on this Sherry-very cool Queen

  3. Excellent job, I really like the rickrack and trims you used on the skirt of her dress.

  4. Gosh, Sherry! Queenie is FANTASTIC!! The details are amazing. Yes, the black outlining made a perfect effect on her crown and face. WAY COOL!