Friday, June 24, 2011

Primitives of the Midwest

Yesterday I had the privilege to take part in a class at an annual gathering of superb primitive artisans in nearby Lee's Summit, MO called Primitives of the Midwest. I took an all day class offered by Lisa Bongean of Primitive Gatherings. Lisa keeps the class moving, but she has a lot of great tips and different ways to do things.
"Patiently Waiting"
Lisa's designs have a lot of detail and she's developed some new techniques to ensure that her finished project has the well crafted look she wants. Instead of using freezer paper to cut out the pieces and tack them on with glue or pins, Lisa recommends using Seam a Seam Lite.

Lots of Cutting Out to Do!

I've always used the freezer paper method and the benefit is you don't have to trace everything. For example, this design has seven flowers and I had to trace each one of them. Using freezer paper allows you to trace it once, cut out the design and then you can reuse the paper and even save it to use when and if you make that design again. But one advantage to using Steam a Seam is that, if you're using a piece of wool that frays easily, this will cut down on the fraying. Lisa also recommends running a tiny bead of Fray Check on the edges of loosely woven wool to ensure no fraying!
Lisa also has a different way of doing the blanket stitch. The trick to ensure the stitches lie flat and don't roll over the design is to keep pressure on the thread, pulling it back from the design. I've done a lot of blanket stitching and never figured that out, but it does make a difference. And then to finish, Lisa cuts the backing about 3/8" smaller than the design, pins the pieces together RST and edges matching and stitches around, leaving an opening for turning this piece. This will cause part of the wool background to roll under, making a nice clean edge that doesn't need to be blanket stitched unless you want to do so.
Tongues Turned In, Ready for Fabric Backing
There's a lot of stitching involved, but I hope to finish this up this weekend.
Class Member Sally Preferred Cardinals
If you are a fan of Lisa's, you'll love the BOM she has coming out this fall. It's a take on the classic Baltimore Album quilt done in wool. I'd love to do this, but I'd have to make it a wall hanging. It would probably last only one or two days on the bed before one of the cats would throw up on it.


Anna said...

The blog today was eye candy! I am a Primitive Gatherings addict and love steam a seam lite! Love the blanket stitch tip...gonna try that today. I am green with envy as I have a class with Lisa on my quilters bucket list!

Christine said...

Hi Roberta! Wow! How I wish I could join you in one of those classes!
Thanks for sharing the tips and lovely pics of your wooly project!
Best wishes

TheCrankyCrow said...

Beautiful piece!!! But - wow! Lots of pieces!! I've never heard of the steam a steam lite.....So when all is said and done, did you like it better than the freezer paper technique? Smiles & Hugs ~ Robin

Raymond Homestead said...

Roberta, thanks for sharing those tips with us! I so love the penny rug! I just love wool period! It's going to be so pretty when it's all done!

Patti said...

Oh you lucky gal! I have dreamed for years of going to POTMW - hoping someday I will get there... And to take a class with Lisa Bonegan!Be still my heart! I absolutely love this piece! And you are doing a lovely job! Thank you so much for sharing! Would love to hear more of your time at POTMW ;)
Blessings, Patti

Heirlooms by Ashton House said...

This looks like so much fun. I love seeing all your POTM projects. I really must try to go sometime.