Nellie"s Needles

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Quilting and Press'n Seal

I'm not particularly fond of Press'n Seal in the kitchen, but I like it a lot in my studio. It's transparent and sticks to fabric and leaves no residue. I draw experimental quilt line patterns on its non-porous surface with a fat tipped Sharpie pen.
It is great for experimenting with quilting patterns directly on the quilt top.
I experimented with wavy, diagonal lines drawn across the warm hued patches. This patterning harmoniously mirrored the directional painting I had added to those patches. Also, I liked the subtle, concentric,ogee-like patterns radiating from the center that developed. This looked good, so I machine quilted those lines with a heavy gold thread. But first, I had machine quilted all the straight lines in the ditch with invisible thread.
I used this on the cottage piece that was completed last spring. I couldn't decide if I wanted to quilt the lines to depict the siding on our cottage. But there were good sized spaces with no quilting within the building and it needed something.
So I cut a piece of Press'n Seal to shape and drew lines. In keeping with the wonky perspective and general feel of the piece, I drew wavy rather than straight ones.
I liked it! Even ended up stitching the lines with black thread. Originally, I was thinking they should be stitched with white just to show texture and to fill in those spaces with quilting. However, seeing the black drawn lines changed my mind.
I know some quilters leave the Press'n Seal stuck to the fabric and sew right through it. I tried that once. Getting the Press'n Seal off without messing up the quilting stitches was a problem for me. It's tough stuff!

Another way that I use Press'n Seal is to figure out the drawing of an overall quilting pattern and stick it to foam core board. I prop it up next to my sewing machine as a reference while I quilt.
I had placed the Press'n Seal over a portion of this quilt top and drew quilt patterns within the blocks as well as between and inside the hearts of the border.
To read more about this quilt go to Quilt of the Day.

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Kay said...

I took a class from Libby Lehman last winter and she said you can actually quilt through the press'n seal, then pull it off. Any residue can be removed by covering it with cheap paper towel (she specified cheap because it lets more heat through), and touching it with a hot iron. The remaining press'n seal sticks to the towel and comes off. (Maybe there is a press cloth on top of towel? Can't remember.) It wasn't clear to me if you did that, or just used it for a sketch. Anyway, just passing the idea on. I like your idea, and will remember it.

Nellie Bass Durand said...

In response to Kay, I don't sew through the Press'n Seal since my experience of removing it messed up my quilting stitches. I'll have to try Libby Lehman's trick. It would be nice to quilt over drawn lines on complex quilt patterns. Right now, I just use it to figure out my patterns and/or a visual reference at my sewing machine while I'm quilting.

Tonya R said...

This is a great idea - I'll have to play around with it. Love how that wonky house is looking and the hearts quilt is gorgeous.

Anonymous said...

Oh this is a great idea. I particularly like being able to quilt through this as I'm trying something with snowflakes quilted and appliqued on the same piece. It's tough for me to keep the snowflake quilt lines smooth.
Thanks for the tip.