Thank you for sharing Lillian's amazing Snowmen A to Zzzz quilt on your blog today. I am sending you a picture of mine so you can see how it looks in Redwork and to encourage you to start one of your own. Your incredible workmanship will turn this pattern into a work of art.
I began this project in November of 2013 expecting it would take a month to stitch each embroidery. By taking my blocks with me everywhere and working in small bits of time, I managed to finish them in half that time.
After all that work, however, I was terrified to trim them down, so I put them away for a few months. I finally realized that what was scaring me was the freezer paper method of trimming suggested in the directions. I was afraid that each time I reused the freezer paper template that I would shave off a bit of the paper and distort both the template and the next block. I didn't want to make 26 different templates, so I took a deep breath and began trimming using an assortment of see-through rulers. I also made sure to rotate the cutting mat rather than the block to avoid disturbing the fabric. It helped that I had used a light weight fusible on the back of each embroidery. This gave the fabric just a bit more stability.
Once the blocks were trimmed they were quickly assembled and borders were applied. I used Moda's "Winter Wonderland" (stars for the narrow border and snowmen for the wide one), which was perfect for this quilt.
My next stumbling block was the fly stitching along all the seams. I tried and tried, but just couldn't get it to look nice. Once again the blocks went into "hibernation." I finally came up with the idea of using one of my rulers (how did we ever manage without these tools?) to mark dots a quarter inch apart and a quarter inch away from each seam. With the dots as a guide, I was able to fly through the fly stitch.
The quilt went to live with my quilter, Angela of Threadwaggle Quilting, last August. Because she does only one custom job per month, I had to wait until mid December to get it back. If you enlarge the picture you can see the wait was worth it. Angela did a spectacular job. Each block is unique, but snowflakes scattered throughout the whole tie it all together. You might also notice a change I made to the "M" block. Inside each mitten I embroidered the name of one of my four daughters. I hate to admit that I didn't think of this myself, but it was actually my husband's idea.
With my Winter Break from school coming up shortly after bringing the quilt home, I was excited about being able to get it bound and displayed before Christmas. Unfortunately, just a few inches into sewing the binding down my Janome conked out. She had to spend some time in the repair shop and did not come home until the second week in January. Although "Snowmen A to Zzzz missed Christmas of 2014, it is ready to be displayed and loved this Christmas and for many Christmases to come.
I hope the story of my quilt serves as another nudge to get you started on yours. Embroidery is the ideal portable project. Using just one color of floss makes it even more travel friendly. I can't wait to see and read about your progress.
Cindy in NC
THANK YOU, CINDY!! This took you time and energy to write and we appreciate it! Also thank you for sharing the picture of your gorgeous quilt...Now I have the dilemma of choosing between stitching this quilt in different colours or straight red work! Yowzers...I'm going to have to give that plenty of thought...but hey, I have plenty of time! :o)) And speaking of TIME, I am still trying to wrap my head around the fact that it took Cindy only a few WEEKS to stitch these blocks! WOW!!
Thanks again, Cindy! You are such an inspiration for all of us to get 'er done!
Have a FUN Friday and Happy Stitching!~P