I'm sure many of you know it was The Festival of Quilts at the NEC last week... The biggest Quilt Show in Europe!
The Janome stand always has a wonderful range of samples on display, using various techniques and sewing machines from our range. Many are made by experts who specialise in their chosen field, from patchwork and quilting, felting, embroidery, (free machine and computer generated). Many are also made by our own Janome staff, who are dedicated sewers themselves. The samples are to inspire your own sewing projects and to suggest different ways to make the most from your Janome machines.
Last year, Pauline Ineson, created a huge amount of interest with her Heirloom Quilt, and I couldn't help myself, but I had to buy her book "How to Create an Heirloom Quilt".
So for Festival 2011, I decided to make an Heirloom Quilt inspired by Pauline's gorgeous work. The quilt in her book would have been way to large to have on display on the Janome stand, and to be honest, would have taken me too long to make! So, I used her book as inspiration to create a smaller lap quilt, using some of her ideas and my wonderful Janome Horizon... and a bit of help from my MC11000SE!
I took lots of photographs during the making of my quilt, so you can be inspired to try something similar yourself at home.
As I wanted an heirloom and vintage feel to my quilt, I made it using 100% silk in ivory and a very pale creamy beige, and embellished them with neutral threads of white, cream, and pale beige.
Firstly, to embroider the centre pieces for my crazy patchwork blocks. I used a selection of designs from the Janome White Work Embroidery Card, and embroidered ivory thread on ivory silk using my Janome MC11000SE.
I wanted the quilt to be blocked in a crazy patchwork style, but I wanted each piece to be highly embellished with decorative stitches, techniques, threads, ribbon and lace. This took quite a while!
Using the Border Guide Foot which is included with the Horizon, I did row upon row of decorative stitches from all of the Modes (different menu's of sticthes) on the Horizon, from Decorative, Heirloom, quilt, to Long and Play stitches. The Border Guide Foot helps to keep your rows of stitching straight, so it was perfect for this project!
Using ribbon and stitch no.59 and no.60 , gives a gorgeous ribbon slot effect.Look at all the rows of scrumptious stitches!! There is Twin Needle work, Wing Needle in there somewhere! If you have never used a Wing Needle, it looks like a normal needle with wings, and created holes in your fabric to create a Victorian Drawn Thread Work effect. Try with the stitches in your Heirloom Mode and see what you like!Using the Blind Hem Foot and moving the needle position over to the left, you can create neat and parallel pin tucks.
And, using the Border Guide Foot again to keep my lines straight and paraellel, I sewed the pin tucks in to different direction to create more interest.
Once all the pieces where embellished, they were then crazy patch worked around an embroidery design. I liked the idea of incorporating my initial into one of the patches... either H for Heidi or Horizon!
When using the crazy Patchwork techniques, each seam is embellished with more decorative stitches.Then sashing is added between the blocks and the patchwork part is done complete. The Crazy Patchwork panel is now tacked to a piece of cotton batting.
Using the Convertable Free Motion Foot on my Horizon, I free machine quilted on the sashing panels only. The height of this style foot can be altered to float on the surface of my quilt, ideal for projects where you have different thicknesses of fabric. (You can also buy this style foot for other Janome machines, have a look HERE for more details).
Using the Acufeed Ditch Foot, I stitched in the ditch with more decorative stitching.
The Janome Horizon has an 11" sewing area, making quilting projects so easy!
I then bound the edge of my quilt with silk bias binding using the Quilt Binder Set, which has been designed to allow for the thickness of wadding to pass through it.
And I'm finished just in time to pack my suitcase and head off to set up the stand for the show! I would love to hear your comments and stories if you have made your own heirloom quilt! Feel free to comment below.
To find out more about Janome Quilting Machines, have a look at website www.janome.co.uk
To see our machines at a sewing exhibition near you soon, check out this page.