Monday, October 6, 2014

Almost a Quilt

My current project is a banner for my daughter's rep hockey team.  Now banners aren't usually like a quilt - well this one is - three layers of fabric stitched together, just no batting. 

After volunteering to make the banner my first thoughts were to use paint - I hadn't quite worked out how I'd create stencils so big and what fabric to use.  Searching local fabric stores - the best I could find was black calico - not very inspiring.  

During a visit to Nancys I mentioned to Mary what I needed to do and it is thanks to her for the suggestion to use layers of fabric and cut away the top.  That was it - I was off - only problem was to find some suitable fabric - last option Pete's Emporium.  After spending a while ferretting around their fabric - for those that don't know Pete's Emporium their fabric is stacked randomly and in a rather crowded fashion.  I found some sturdy black nylon and just the right yellow, for Wellington colours, raincoat-like nylon.  

Before going large scale (1.5m x 1m), I created a prototype.  


For the letters I used Microsoft Word, printed the letters as an outline, pinned the paper to the layers of fabric, stitched along the lines, ripped the paper away and carefully cut (only one minor snip in the wrong place) away the black top layer revealing the yellow below.   I had four layers, as my plan was to have the banner double sided, this quickly changed.  Mostly because of the bulk.

paper pattern

A hint: in Word underline each letter so when the letters are taped together just match the horizontal and vertical lines of the underlines and the letters will line up nicely.  

paper partly removed

I'd used the underlines so I could line up the horizontal lines and it was a happy accident to discover that matching the vertical lines meant the letters were correctly spaced!


To create the final pattern I again used Word - the big letters are 550 point.  After printing the pages, I taped them together and then taped them to the fabric. Changing the needle on my machine to a denim needle, stitched along the lines.  For the first letter I carefully turned the fabric as I sewed around each corner.  I only did that once!!  The rest of the letters were stitched free motion, yah for all that quilting practice!  The nylon doesn't seem to fray so just a few rounds of straight stitching was enough.

Almost finished ...

...  just need to finish the edges and add some eyelets.

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