Thursday, July 20, 2006
On the Wild Side
That's the title of my finished Queen Anne's Lace piece for our "How Does Your Garden Grow challenge. I'm happy with the colors and the composition, and the flower pieces are ok (my husband knew what they were when it was finished), but as usual my machine quilting is the weak spot. Not only do the stitches leave a lot to be desired, but I have trouble knowing what pattern would best enhance the piece. All I can do is keep practicing and hope for the best.
I used several different fusibles on this, some new to me, so if anybody wants a quickie review of fusibles, read on. I used BoNash to fuse the center lace medallion and that worked very well. It did not hold the indiviual rosettes though, and I had to use a glue stick for basting until they were sewed down. BoNash works well, but is messy. I used Misty Fuse for the sheer part of the flower, and although it did the job, I'm not as enthusiastic as some have been. The directions are vague, and it's hard to judge the temperature. With a synthetic like the one I was using, it's easy to be too hot, too long. For the big simple leaves at the top and the finished flower pieces I used Steam-a-Seam 2. It works in the final step, but has the usual problem of not sticking tightly to the fabric in step one, (before it's fused). So I find it unsatisfactory to use for a piece that has to be cut very accurately or with fine details. My favorite fusible, which I used for the fern-like detailed leaves on the bottom, is something called Trans-Web. A guild friend swears by it, and she gave me a piece. I have been hoarding it and using it sparingly because I can't find it locally now. I found sources on the internet, but one is out of it, and the other one has not yet shipped, so who knows. It's a great product--it holds firmly in the first step (which is fused), and the paper backing peels off cleanly, so you can make quite delicate detailed cuts without a problem. I sure hope the manufacturer has not discontinued this product. Basically, I think there is no perfect fusible--it amazes me how people do such fine work with them--their fine motor skills are obviously better than mine!