Tuesday, February 19, 2008

How Does a Spiral Recycle?

Here is a visual description of how I make my Spiral Recycles pieces. This is how I made #4 in the series.

I start out with a selection of scraps. Usually I am using the tiny strips and edges cut off when rotary cutting, most about 1/2" wide. I start out with a fusible batting piece on a quilt backing.
Here you can see the backing fabric that I've pre-fused so it is nice and flat, acting as one piece for the manipulating coming up ahead in the process.
I spread out the compressed scraps and start figuring out what I've got to work with. Looking for colors and separating out the batting scraps. Since those are white I have to distribute those carefully. I like using a small collection at a time. This keeps it simple and I'm not trying to find the "perfect" piece, I'm limited to working with what I've got right there in front of me in the workspace.
If there are larger pieces of fabric I will put them along the edges of the piece as that tends to be harder to fill in using the method I'm working with here.
Once I've got it all arranged, I place a piece of tulle net on top, pin around the edges, flip over and iron down on the backing side with a hot and steamy iron. The fusible batting holds most of the fabric down enough to work with and the net doesn't melt if I iron from the backing side.

There may be some re-shuffling to do if blank spots have appeared after the ironing process. And I do pin a bit throughout the whole surface, just to make it a bit sturdier during the quilting.
Here it is under the needle. I go back and forth and around and around. Working from the center out to the edge. It gets flatter and flatter, remember this used to be about 1" high before I ironed it!
Then, interruptions!
Back to quilting. I don't want anything shifting around, that fusible isn't going to hold forever once this is vertical on the wall. The stitching lines begin to show through the chaos of the background and give the piece some coherence. As the edges are stitched I fold around the quilt edge the excess net as I'm sewing.
Here is how it looks after lots of stitching. I don't like how that green piece is so outstanding. It is a piece of bias binding and it looks very out of place.
Time to add something else, so I go to the current scraps bin which has pre-quilted edges I've trimmed off of recent quilts. These have the three quilt layers held together with stitching. Adding them on top will give more dimension to the piece.

Using the green bias tape as a guide I start stitching them down, creating a spiral on top of the recycled chaos below.
And here it is finished! Voila' , "Spiral Recycles 4"


Quilt Pixie said...

this is a wonderful way of making complex fabric! Thanks for the idea :-)

Anne said...

This is cool, do you mind if I "borrow" this idea?

Fun4All said...

Wow, that is awesome! I love to play around with scraps too. I made rug last year with a bunch of old clothes.
I was looking at your quilts on your wesite, nd I love the Bone Deep Remembrance!
You are so talented!

Jaye said...

I am so thrilled at how much you are outputing! WOWee!