Tiny Houses…Time to Quilt!

This quilt is so small, there’s really no excuse to ask anyone else to machine quilt it for me. I’ve decided to quilter-up and do it myself. And I’m using a pretty elaborate quilting plan. Rebecca Segura of Zeffie’s Quilts machine quilted the lap-size quilt this miniature is based on (the bigger version will be in the May/June issue of McCall’s Quilting). She designed a custom feathered tree to quilt in all the sashing areas, and I fell totally in love with it. I want the same look on the mini quilt, so first I traced Rebecca’s design, then reduced it to 25% (because the mini quilt is 1/4 the size of the original). Then, I retraced the tiny tree, simplifying the feathers so the mini quilting motif wouldn’t be all thread. Then, I traced it one more time to make my final pattern, adding lines to show placement on the sashing patches. Here’s how all that looked:

houses tree designs 286x300 Tiny Houses...Time to Quilt!

Now, how to transfer the design onto my quilt top? First I tried tracing it directly onto test fabric using a fine-point water soluble marker:

houses draw on quilt 238x300 Tiny Houses...Time to Quilt!

Not a terrible idea, but I didn’t like how in some places the ink marks were blotchy. I wanted something more precise. So, I tried tracing onto waxed paper with a fine-point permanent marker, then laying the tracing on test fabric and stitching through the paper:

Houses waxed paper 225x300 Tiny Houses...Time to Quilt!

No, no, no!! This worked well as a pattern, but as the silk thread passed through those black lines, it picked up some of the pigment….if you look at the left side of the photo, you’ll see permanent black marker on my test fabric! I looked at my little quilt top and breathed a sigh of relief that I hadn’t plowed ahead and done this on the real thing. Obviously, I need to use that removable marker, but what will it draw on with precision? I tried tissue paper:

houses tissue paper 225x300 Tiny Houses...Time to Quilt!

It worked, and the blue lines are safe for the fabric, but the tissue was next to impossible to remove. OK, how about Steam a Seam 2?

Houses steam a seam 2 244x300 Tiny Houses...Time to Quilt!

Nope. Too thick to remove easily. Vellum tracing paper….that was the ticket!

houses tracing paper 300x253 Tiny Houses...Time to Quilt!

Worked great on a sample, so I got to work on the real quilt. I pinned the vellum tracing onto the sashing area:

houses pinned ready to stitch 225x300 Tiny Houses...Time to Quilt!

Then I started stitching! Having done so many samples was actually good for my machine quilting skills. It’s coming along nicely.

houses quilted 225x300 Tiny Houses...Time to Quilt!

Just a few more to go, and then I’ll show you the end result. This is so much fun!

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5 Responses to Tiny Houses…Time to Quilt!

  1. kate says:

    Where can I find the instructions to make the Tiny Houses quilt? I stink at math, BTW!!

  2. Shari says:

    Love the little house quilt. And it’s great that you shared your process for the quilting – some great tips there! Thanks! Hope you have a great day full of quilty pleasures!

  3. Kathy says:

    Kate, the full pattern and foundation masters for the tiny house quilt will be available on our website under Bonuses very soon. End of March is my best guess. We’ll announce it on the blog when the pattern goes live, as well. Keep watching!

  4. Kathy, you did a great job of shrinking that feathered tree motif for your Tiny Houses quilt! I have never used vellum tracing paper, but I can see some in my future! Looking forward to seeing your little quilt finished.

  5. Kathy says:

    Thanks, Rebecca! Machine quilting praise from YOU is like…having Barbra Streisand compliment my humming (as if!). Your feathered tree design is total inspiration.

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