Kathy's Newsletter/ New and improved!


Greetings my friends;

It has been a whirlwind of fun trips this spring. MQX was wild. Over 100 people rocked out to the Beatles song, while making their own Octopus Garden pattern quilts. Let's do it again. We get to repeat all the fun at Fall MQX in September. Watch for those signups. The classes fill quickly. 

       Spring - Come Fairies,  I would ride with you upon the wind and dance upon the mountains like a flame!
                          William Butler Yeats


Winds brings change, and it sure is nice when change comes with an improvement and not just new aches and pains.
Our new shipment just arrived from Apliquick in Spain. Many of you have suggested changes and they listened.
        We now have the NEW EASY GRIP bevel rods.

The older bevel rod version was slimmer.  Quilter's with a bit of arthritis ,asked if the bevel rod could be made thicker like the fork rod. This new design is great and Rosa reports that people tend to hold it properly right from the get go. All new rod sets will have this thicker pair. You can also order the single replacement rod if you feel this would work better for you. Cost $23.75 The price did increase a little because each rod has to be individually lathed to taper each end to the bevel and the point.

Click here https://www.kathymcneilquilts.com/shop/Apliquick-tools--supplies/p/Easy-Grip-Bevel-Rod-x33598650.htm



There is still time to sign up for my next two teaching events.


N.C symposium in Asheville May 31st - June 3rd.
Click below for more information
http://www.ashevillequiltguild.org/programs/quilt_symposium-2018/

Minnesota Quilters Annual Show  June 13th -16th
Click below for more information
http://www.mnquilt.org/mq2018/index.html

Artistic License

You may know that I always give myself a new challenge with each quilt I make. "Artistic License' is a look into the unique vision that each individual sees. This year I decided to pull up my knickers, find some courage and challenge my 3 point perspective drawing skills.


We took so many photos on our wonderful trip to Colmar, France. I fell in love with those pastel colored half timbered houses. They are built along canals and I spent several hours sketching them from the bridge. Yikes, all those angles, intersecting lines, and scale size changes. Thank heavens for Apliquick. I could turn those tiny timbers and keep them straight. One of the most delightful parts of the village were the flower boxes hanging beneath all the windows. Fussy cutting those tiny flowers from novelty prints is time consuming. Turning tiny bits with complex edges is possible with the interfacing to stabilize this fabric. Novelty prints often have low thread counts,  fray easily, are NOT dyed thru front and back, so if you choose to fuse them, the white edges show up so pitifully.  But persistence and determination paid off. Well at least I finished it.... and learned ALOT.

  
Unit applique-
Each house was created separately.  Housing units were then pinned together and sewn. As each new building section was completed they were pinned over the drawing on the design wall. Finally, when all the units/sections were finished, the water slid beneath and the sky behind.
                                   Why is the artist a guy? Because if I made it a self portrait those fairies would have shown up and demanded to be included.

Raw Edge Fused Applique Tips.
"How do you keep your threads from breaking and your machine needle from getting so gummed up when machine quilting over fused pieces?"

                                                            Here is my list of possible solutions to this vexing problem.

Use a Titanium needle. They last longer and the coating seems to repel more of the fusible glue.
Use a Top stitch 90/14 needle. 
Use a strong lint free thread like Magnifico for the sheen or a trilobal polyester. They hold up better to the tension going thru those thicker layers.       You don't want thread lint to pick up those glue fragments.
Try a little silicone bead on your machine needle. It helps it to glide thru the fused fabrics easily. Collins Sewers Aide

Bruce and I are gratefully fitting in a cruise vacation between busy trips. We will be away May 9th-25th. Our assistant will be house sitting the puppies and shipping out your internet orders. You can reach us by email, but it make take me a little longer to get back to you.

Creative breezes are headed your way with lots of hugs.
Kathy