I get the BEST idea for stamps from my readers! This one popped up as a suggestion last year. It does take some time to make and test the stamps, but this one is a WINNER!!!!!!!!!!!
If you only have one stamp in your collection, the TALL TRIANGLE has to be it!
Tall Triangle Stamp
I love options and this one stamp has many! I used it as a fabulous border on a new quilt I’m quilting. I also used it as a border on a sampler quilt. Look at this detail picture!
The stamp is 1 1/2″ wide and 2″ tall (finished size), so it fit on 6″, 9″ or 12″ blocks (or any multiple of 1 1/2″) easily. Looking at this, you can see it is easy to “sequentially piece”, too! You’ll be adding beautifully pieced borders to all your quilts!
I was also inspired to make a “Streak O’ Lightening” arrangement with the triangle shapes. What a great way to use up your scraps!
Streak O’ Lightening idea
You can also make the “Double Kaleidoscope” using this new stamp. I used the “Cracker Box” triangle for the corners, but a template is included with the pattern.
There are instructions in the pattern for this quilt in the pattern and pictures of the other 2 suggestions on the cover.
For those of you working on the Sunburst blocks, you might have questions about how did I get my blocks to lie so flat in my quilt. Included in your Sunburst stamps are these instructions, but I thought I’d give you a detailed step by step.
First press your block from the back.
Press the seams in one direction.
Turn it over and press again, making sure your points are “pointy”.
Turn over your blocks and measure from point to point. (Do this on several of your blocks to make sure your stitching is consistent.)
My measurement is slightly less than 6″.
Your measurement might be different, so don’t be worried. Everyone’s stitching is slightly different.
Now using a compass make a circle according to your measurement on template plastic.
My sunburst template.
Make sure your template fits INSIDE the stamped outside line. There needs to be a pencil width inside for the next steps.
Using my pdf file I mark the 30° reference points all along the edge.
Notice I centered the plastic and my template doesn’t go out to the dotted line. It doesn’t matter. If you email me I’ll send you a PDF file of the “Sunburst Rays” for your use.
Now you just need to use your personal template to finish your block as shown in your instructions.
Press on the back, pressing the seams OUT from the block to create beautiful points. (They will want to go toward the sunburst, so be the boss and force them out!)
Front of finished block.
Still shopping for the “perfect” background fabric, but this will do for now.
I had a question the other day about pressing my blocks as I stitch. The great thing about hand piecing is you wait until your blocks are made before pressing. You don’t sew the seam allowance down as you stitch so the seams are free to be pressed in either direction.
I’ve neglected the Josephine’s Garden Handwork Adventure to my shame in hopes everyone is ready for the next step in embroidery and wool applique. (I promise I’ll blog next week on these steps.)
In your instruction packet you received this color handout of the backside of the center piece.
Back of center section.
You will notice I pressed on the seams around in a “swirl”. Because I am right handed, I press in a counter clockwise motion. (Lefties will do opposite.) The seams are breathtakingly FLAT!!!! A thing of beauty.
A question was just asked on my “Stitching with Cindy Blackberg” face book page about stamping on the lengthwise grain. I thought I’d clarify the issue with a few pictures for your benefit.
First question is WHY is grain line so important in quilting? Answer: Because you can get a stretched out mess without checking the grain.
My stamps are all mounted on the wood so that the lengthwise grain should be lined up with the finger holds on the stamps.
Let’s go into my studio and stamp some diamonds for the 3″ Lemoyne Star. I measure my stamp from top to bottom and then cut some 2″ strips PARALLEL TO THE SELVAGE.
Lay out your strips on your craft mat face down.
Make sure your strips are cut parallel to the lengthwise grain.
Now ink up your stamp and away you go! Stamp as many diamonds as you can accommodate on your strip. Notice 2 sides of the diamond will be on the lengthwise grain with no stretch and 2 sides of the diamond will be on the bias.
Stamp across your strip making sure the finger holds are parallel to the top and bottom.
For some patterns it isn’t as important to be accurate on the lengthwise grain, but on the Lemoyne star, when you sew the pieces together, you’ll be stitching a lengthwise grain to a bias all around your star. Your lengthwise grain side will keep the bias side from stretching! (Ever have a star that looked like a “B” cup? Well, here is your answer.)
On the front of your star, you’ll be able to see the lengthwise grain edge by looking at the stripe fabric. It was stamped and cut on the lengthwise grain.
Finished side of the star.
There are sometimes when I disregard the grain line. When I’m fussing cutting a fabric, but you will notice that even with fussy cutting, I don’t fussy cut ALL the pieces.
This “Lucy Boston” setting shows some of the pieces fussy cut and some cut on the grain line.
There was one last question my reader had about jelly roll strips. I wish they were cut parallel to the selvage, but they are not. I would save these for quick quilt patterns.
I hope this clears up some questions and will help you to have perfectly flat and lovely quilts!
As I was updating yet another version of “Tiny Stitches” I thought I’d share a technique I use called “layered trapunto.” This is such an easy method of trapunto that doesn’t require extra tools or slicing holes in the back of your quilt.
First, trace your design onto the front of your quilt. (I use a graphite pencil available on my website.) Decide what section you’d like to appear layered.
I decided to layer the feathers in this block.
Lay your design on top of a piece of HOBBS THERMORE. (No backing yet!)
Baste just outside and inside the feathers.
After basting, turn your piece over and trim the extra batting.
Your back should look like this.
No need to trim exact. This will be inside your quilt.
Now, lay down your piece on another whole piece of HOBBS THERMORE, backing and baste as you would normally.
Basted and ready to quilt.
Quilt your piece as you normally would. Wash and let it dry flat.
Notice the feathers are raised without distortion.
The first question you will ask is why Hobbs Thermore? Answer: It is the only batting that you can successfully hand quilt through 2 layers. (I’ve tried this with other battings and don’t like the results.)
And yes, I did cord the channel, too, but that is in the NEW Pocket Guide available very soon.
I keep forgetting I get new people coming to my website daily. One of the frequently asked questions I get is about the ink pads I sell on my website.
Versa Craft Ink and Reinkers
I only sell Versa Craft ink pads. The ink is PERMANENT, it won’t wash out, won’t bleed through unless you are using a really thin fabric. WHY PERMANENT? So it won’t bleed when washing your quilt. If it washed out, it would run all over your precious piecing and stain.
The ink is also SAFE for your fabrics. It is “archival” which means it contains no acid. It won’t destroy your stitching thread after years of use.
The second question I often get is that the stamp pad is smaller than some of the stamps. How do you use it?
Simply start on one side of the stamp…
Tap gently on one end.
Keep tapping across the pad to the other end.
Continue tapping across the pad.
When you turn over your stamp, you should have all the lines covered with ink.
Rubber side ready to go!
Now line up the finger holds along the lengthwise grain. (Remember from an earlier blog ALL my stamps are mounted so the lengthwise grain is parallel to the finger holds.)
I do “reink” the stamp every time I stamp. I also “gang up” my stamping to save fabric. I do this by switching the direction of the stamp.
Turn the stamp 180° to “gang up” the shapes.
Your original ink pad should last for a couple quilts without having to refresh it. Do not throw it out or purchase another pad if it starts to dry out. Instead purchase a reinker. Shake the reinker bottle and squirt out a small bead of ink across the pad with the nozzle.
After squeezing out a small bead of ink, blend it into the pad with the nozzle.
Now you are good to stamp for another 100,000 miles! 🙂
Need to clean your stamp? I use a baby wipe or a “Wet One.”
Wipe off the excess ink and dry with a paper towel.
Another question I often receive is “Should I heat set?” No need. I have tested the ink by heat setting and not heat setting. Once it dries (in a couple minutes after stamping) it is permanent.
I hope this helps my “newbies” to understand some of the common questions.