Buildings, Strawberries, and Couching

I’ve written before about the Wisconsin Museum of Quilts and Fiber Arts in Cedarburg, WI, and that’s where the second completed UFO I spoke of last week is right now.

WMQFA had it’s beginnings in the Wisconsin Quilt History Project – documenting quilts in Wisconsin. Then a farm was acquired and the fundraising was begun to turn an old barn into a museum! Before the barn was renovated, I was at a fund raising event there, and took pictures of some of the buildings. While on a teaching trip to Alaska (click here to read that post), I stayed with quilting friends and had time to Repliqué two of the “building” blocks.

Each Spring Cedarburg has a Strawberry Festival, and each year the WMQFA has a strawberry challenge. When I got the entry form for this year’s Strawberry challenge, I knew the time to finish those blocks had arrived. I completed the third “building” block, added patches from a “fruit” fabric, bordered, quilted and bound it all in time to drop it off at the Museum – 4 hours before the deadline.

Strawberries-and-Buildings-web

Sew, what does this have to do with couching? Well, when I’d completed the quilt top, the black fabric was overwhelming.

couching yarn on quilts

I didn’t have much time to come up with a fix, so I did a bit of quick noodling, and decided to couch red yarn inside the black border. This is a “go to” technique I’ve used before and it’s a goodie.

To begin, I thread the machine with a color thread to match the yarn, and set it for a zig-zag stitch wide enough to cover the yarn. I leave a 3″ tail of yarn at a corner, lay the yarn in the ditch of the border seam, make one stitch in the yarn at the corner to anchor it, and zig-zag it in place – pivoting at the corners.

couching yarn on quilts

Strawberries, Buildings and Fiber Art

When I reach the end, I thread the yarn tails into a large needle and bury them in between the quilt layers. I had a great time quilting the border with words. Then I needed a name. When nothing clever came to mind, I asked Sommer who said, in matter of fact 4 year old fashion, “Buildings and Strawberries”.

My friend Sonja created a fascinating piece of fiber art for the contest also.

Sonja's-strawberries

My quilt, Sonja’s, and all of the entries, will be on display at the museum in Cedarburg the weekend of Strawberry Festival – June 25 and 26! Please let me know if you see it there 🙂 !

 


5 Opinions

  • Dee Bang said:

    Such a great hint. Thanks for the pictures that are so well done. I think I can do this at some time.

    Reply
  • Bonnie Camp said:

    What a difference the yarn made! It took your quilt to a whole new level. The buildings are lovely! bonnie c

    Reply
  • Joanne Corrigan said:

    Very clever of you, Chris! I love this idea.

    Reply
  • Toni said:

    Lovely. 2 of the biggest and best in a long time. I hope to see them at WMQFA this Thursday, for the Featherweight workshops. Toni N.

    Reply
  • Jodi admin

    AMAZING! Chris, I’ve taken your Replique class and seen some of your Replique work, but I am stunned at the beauty of this piece! I can’t imagine you not winning! I am going to try to get up there next weekend!

    Reply

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