Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Bargello Top is Finished

The piecing is done…
Borders applied and mitered
003 (3) - Copy
To cut your borders …
measure the top of your quilt add the width of your border twice plus 2 inches…
this will be the length of your top and bottom borders
(the width is up to you)
repeat for your sides
Measure and mark with pins into fourths the quilt edge top and border…
match up pins and sew to within 1/4 inch of top edge
Apply all sides this way and miter.
004 (3)
Carrie’s Bargello was to be a “full size”
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But, I don’t like not being able to tuck my pillows when making a bed with a quilt so I added enough for that..
Next the top will be pinned to the the backing and batting then it will be on it’s way to the hoop.
007 (3) - Copy
So with a lot of “supervision”
a little time and some gumption
we jumped in and proved my mama right
“You girls, can do anything you set your mind to.”
Not only could I …
but, I enjoyed it so much I’m already contemplating the design for my next Bargello!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Let’s build that Bargello Quilt!

From the Start
Using graft paper
10 squares per inch,
each square will represent 1/4 inch.
(The vertical dimensions of each square correspond to the width of the color run strips you cut for the tube… and vary from quilt to quilt… we’ll talk about that in a minute)
So, let’s plot our design…
On your graft paper “free hand” your curved line across the page…
this will take a little practice to get it the way you want and across the page which represents the width of the bargello…
Now figure out the size of each block it requires to imitate the direction your curve is taking. Fill in graft squares to represent the width of Bargello strips needed for the design.
1. Make steep slopes with narrow vertical blocks
2. Make gradual slopes from wide vertical blocks
3. Make points with gradual narrow blocks that change direction
4. Make waves with gradual wide blocks that change directions.
012 (2)
Now, let’s take a moment and discuss the width to cut your strips..
First decide on the size you want your quilt…
and will it have borders?
Let’s pretend the size of your “Bargello” will be
and you have 9 different colors you want to use
Repeating each color run 3 times…
That's 27 strips...
with me so far?
72”(length) divided by 27(total strips)=
 2 2/3” wide strips (finished)
to add 1/2 inch to size of finished strips for seam allowances… before cutting!!!
So our “pretend” strips would be cut
2 2/3 +1/2 = 3 1/6
*All fabric should always be pre washed and ironed…
this is to make sure any shrinking and fading is done before project is constructed…
It is not pretty when two or three different fabrics are sewn together and shrink different amounts …*
 you have figured out what it will take to get the length.
What is the width of your shortest fabric?
(selvage to selvage?)
(If one is extremely shorter than the others you can add on to it after you cut strips before you sew them together,so the strips in your tubes will be close to the same... don't worry you are going to square and trim them)
Say, your strips are 45” wide and your quilt is to be 58”
 you will need 2 tubes to cover that width.
O.K. Lets cut the strips
Be sure and square up your fabric…
using your rotary cutter cut off the edge to get everything nice and straight…
be sure and check every now and again to make sure it stays good and squared. 
and cut your strips…
continue cutting till you have enough strips for quilt…
Now in the beginning when we first picked out the fabric and decided on what order that fabric looked the best
we made a cheat sheet …
so we wouldn’t forget…
It’s really nice to have to look around at from time to time
put a small swatch on your sheet in the order you like and number them
this is the order you will sew them together in…
starting with one all the way through 10…
sew your strips together using a 1/4” seam
029049 (3)
at the end of each strip turn your sewing around and start the next seam on the same end you just finished…
I found it very helpful to place a pin on that end as soon as I was getting ready to remove it from under the foot…
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Just in case Miss Bobo or Thibby talked to me ,
the phone rang or I got a text…
I would still know where to start when I resumed sewing!!!
054 (3)
then repeat as many times as you want the color run to repeat…
mine was four
I know, I know, ironing is
but it is a must to iron those seams all in the same direction.
Now, sew those strips
(my 4 runs of 10 = 40)
the very first one to the last one making a “tube”
big circle 
Be sure and iron…
next you will have to fold it carefully so that it will fit on your cutting mat and we are ready to start cutting our different sizes from the tubes…
trim off the selvage edges from the tubes
Square it up!
and check often!
remember, the curve you made on your graft paper? and all the different size blocks you plotted… ?
I cut each strip from my tube no more than 3 at a time so as not to get confused and pick up the wrong one…
SO let’s say I started with the 2” block..
remembering the seam allowances I cut the strip (tube) 2 &1/2”
001 (2)
then I cut the next one on the graft ...
003 (2)
So I have two tubes in my hand the first tube … and the one just to it’s right…
I’m now going to decide which block will be the top block and remove the stitching between it and the one above it..
Now I have a long strip again…
the next cut tube according to my graft the colors will ascend by one…
So I will remove that stitching
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009 (3)
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and square the two strips up side by side… making sure my corners will line up and then stitch them together…
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at the end of this seam I place my pin so when I cut the next one I will start at that end when I start sewing my seam…
Over and over, I check my graft, cut my tube,
check my graft, move the colors up or down, remove the stitching and pin…
sew a seam place end pin…
cut a tube…
and so we are building a Bargello
004 (2)005 (2)007 (2)009 (3)
023 (2) 
with a lot of company
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and a few days

and a lot of close supervision
032 (2)
 065 (3)
049 (2)

we are finally ready for
the borders
but, now it’s also
the Fourth of July…
so construction will take a break and
after the fourth
we will start on the borders…
Have I totally confused you?
Or is it clear as mud?

If it's as clear as mud... don't lose heart.. I was confused till I just jumped in with both feet.. and found out this way is really ... fun!
                 and our kitten, too.