OK. I have been working out a satin sampler to test markers, techniques, threads, paints, and background designs for several projects, one being my Mom’s memory quilt. The cool thing about this is that I am making it with polyester crepe back satin. It has a lovely beefy hand and I wanted to test it for future projects. Why? Partly because I can get a 58 inch wide piece for about $5 per yard for a lighter hand up to $8 a yard for a heavy satin instead of the $17 to $40 a yard for 43″ wide fabric, and partly because there are some wonderful colors available in the polyester that don’t run when washed. I am using the heavy polyester crepe back satin for this sampler. I will be making it into a pillow top for my bedroom since I can tell I will like it when finished.
Sew I have layered it with a cotton backing, and a double bat of Quilter’s Dream 80/20 select loft on bottom and Quilter’s Dream wool on top. I marked it with a heat-away gel pen (see my blog on marker testing for this satin) that I do not recommend unless you are prepared to go through a removal process that requires much effort and time. This ink returns when frozen (such as in the airplane when you check your luggage or ship it someplace). Also, my marker testing is incomplete, because I want to finish the sampler, freeze it, and completely test the removal process again on this sandwiched piece. I am quilting it with 40 weight Superior Magnifico and, where needed, 100 weight microquilter.
I painted this sampler with a combination of Setacolor and Jacquard Lumier fabric paints in order to get the colors I wanted. Their steadfastness will also be tested in the freezing/washing test.
Here is a little look at my work on this little sampler thus far. I am really having fun with this. While most of the stitch work has been on my Bernina Q20 sitdown longarm, some very small amount was done on my new B 880 Plus machine, just to see how it quilts. LOL
So my conclusion about good quality polyester crepe back satin as a quilting fabric…it works, it’s beautiful, and it both paints and quilts well. I do back it with a very light weight pellon fusible to make it behave well.
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Something I didn’t tell you all earlier is that just after I got Odette all sorted out with a new machine from Bernina because the first one seemed to have a serious problem, I made a mistake in threading it and got a huge glob of thread nest in it that I could not remove myself. So I had to take it in to the dealer to get it fixed. It made me weep. I was really gloomy when I found that Lew, the magical tech guy, was out for two weeks and so I had to wait. He fixed it almost imediately when he got back and I got it safely home on Tuesday and have done considerable sewing and embroidery on it since then. It is clearly a wonderful machine. It was my mistake, and I have since figured out what I did wrong (with Lew’s suggestions). I didn’t want to whine again or have people tell me I was wrong to buy it in the first place because their prefered brand works so much better they think.
Anyway, that meant that I was without my main sewing machine for nearly three months with the exception of a day or two twice!!! So I did a lot of sewing on my little Bernina 350 and a lot of free motion work on my Q20, and a lot of non-machine prep work for future projects, and stacked up quite a bit of work for the new machine. I will, therefore, be missing a few deadlines I had tentatively planned on.
I have begun attacking the stack of work and have been having a huge amount of fun and the icy fear of further machine problems has begun to melt away over the past week. In addition to some “regular” sewing, I did some in-the-hoop embroidery last week that came out so perfect and beautiful that I was nearly weeping again, this time in joy. You should know that I seldom cry for anything much, and am known as a “tough old bird” as one of my former colleagues told me. But this machine saga seems to have loosened a few tears from me.
Sew happy everyone! May your stitches be beautiful and your machines play well with you for many years. Hugs to you all!