The first exercise for the 2012 project is to practice stippling, the most basic of quilting techniques. I first drew the pattern on a piece of paper, and then tried it on a six inch square to see how it would turn out. You can see the basic shape at the top, and then a little bit more development on every row until I arrive at actual stippling on the bottom.
This turned out well for a first try, and I managed to make the back look just as good as the front. I figured this meant I was ready to practice on a big piece of fabric. This year, I've decided that all of my practice material will be turned into blankets for rescued cats at the Edmonton Humane Society through the Snuggles Project. These are the flannels I chose for my very first kitty blanket:
I tested the pattern on some flannel scraps first, and when I got the tension just right, I started on the blanket. My stippling was looking great!
Unfortunately, about three quarters of the way through the blanket, my sewing machine completely gave up on me. I didn't change anything, but all of a sudden the back of the stitching turned into a disaster of loops and my thread kept snapping. I've tried every tension setting, and I'm using a brand new needle, but I just can't get my machine back into its groove. Finally, I realized that I was just making a mess and gave up trying to readjust my machine. Here is what I've been able to do so far:
As you can see, there is just the bottom right corner left to quilt. I'm not using batting for this, just two layers of flannel. I know it's possible to quilt this material, because the first 75% worked perfectly, I just don't know what to adjust in order to get back to that. I hope there's someone out there who has worked with flannel before who will be able to offer me some pointers so that I can move on.
On another note, I finished two amazing projects this week and can't wait to share them... but I'll be away for a few days visiting family so they'll just have to wait. Come back next week to check them out!