Quilting Silhouette series of patterns

By Heather Buck
on November 29, 2015
With 1 comments

 I often get asked how I quilt my Silhouette series of designs.  So I thought I would share how I like to quilt them.  Of course it is your choice how you choose to quilt your quilts.  While I like the look of the very fancy quilting some people are able to achieve it isn't for me.  For quilts that are going to be used the more heavily they are quilted the stiffer they become and they are not as cuddly.


 With all of my Silhouette designs I start by quilting around the Silhouettes using a free motion foot.  Sometimes this is called a darning foot or Pogo foot. If there are cut outs within a Silhouette I will also quilt around these.  As there are lots of colours in each of these quilts I always use a variegated thread that complements the colours within the quilt.  More often than not these are King Tut Variegated threads as there are lots of colour combinations to choose from.

In the earlier quilts once I had finished stitching around the Silhouettes I then stitched in the ditch using a walking foot.  I didn't stitch every seam line as the blocks were quite small I only stitched every other row.  Then I decided I was sick of stitching in the ditch so instead I started shadow quilting the backgrounds.


I still needed to quilt around the silhouettes but with the  African Silhouettes I free motioned some tufts of grass into the gaps between the animals.  If you use good quality Batting you don't have to quilt over everything.  Your stitching can be up to 10" apart but of course it will look better if you quilt closer together than this.  I like to have no more than 4 - 5inches between quilting.




When I quilted The Kimberley, Flamingo's, Sea Dragons and Farmyard I shadow quilted the silhouette designs into the background.  With the Flamingo's I quilted outlines of Lilly Pads in the blue and Flamingo's in flight in the pink. With The Kimberley I quilted Lizards in the gaps at the bottom,  Emus up the side and Camels around the camels at the top.

Sounds difficult I hear you say but it isn't difficult at all. But like everything worth doing it does take a little practise.

I use Quilters Freezer paper which is available through Patchwork shops.  This is a heavy paper shiny on one side with a matt finish on the other side.  Then using the drawings of the silhouettes in the pattern I traced one onto the non shiny side of the freezer paper.  If the image isn't the size you want then use a copier to make larger or smaller.  Once I have traced the image to the freezer paper I then cut out the shape carefully so that  I then have a template for my quilting.

I then position my new template on the quilt with the shiny side down and press into place with a moderately hot iron and this will temporarily bond the freezer paper to the quilt.  If you handle this too much or fold it the freezer paper will start to lift.


Using your free motion foot stitch around the outline of the template, stitching carefully to stay on the fabric and not the paper.  Don't be too concerned if you wobble a little this is only noticeable while the template is in position.  Once you remove the freezer paper it won't be noticeable.

Remove the freezer paper carefully once finished stitching as this can be reused approx. 6 times before it will no longer stay in position on the quilt.

If you look closely the stitching is visible where I have stitched a seal.


I hope these instructions give you all the confidence to have a go.

Happy Stitching


What is a Fat Quarter??

By Heather Buck
on May 28, 2015
With 0 comments

How many of you know the difference between an imperial and a metric fat quarter??


Patterns often have fat quarters listed in the requirements but not what size fat quarters were used.

I am an Australian Designer and while I make my quilts using inches I purchase my fabric in metres or centimetres.  When I write a pattern and specify a fat quarter in the requirements they are metric fat quarters.  American designers write their patterns using American or Imperial fat quarters.

So what is the difference I hear you say.

Metric fat quarters are 50 cm x 1/2 the width of the fabric which makes them 50 cm x 55 cm. which in imperial measurements makes them approx. 20" x 22"

An American or Imperial fat quarter is 18" x 22" which makes them 2" smaller along one side than a Metric or Australian Fat Quarter.

Both are available in Australia.  The precuts shops buy in from distributors, will nearly always be an American fat quarter and budget shops like Spotlight, will also have American fat quarters.  At the Craft fairs and in your local patchwork shops any fat quarters that are cut in store should be Australian/Metric fat quarters.  If you are unsure ask the assistant.


Happy Stitching



Reversible Bindings

By Heather Buck
on May 04, 2015
With 0 comments

Hi Everyone,

Below is a short video on how to attach a reversible or two colour binding to your quilt.  It is a very effective binding and simple to do.  Great for if you have made a fully reversible quilt and the binding for the front is not a good match for the back of the quilt.

Happy Stitching



Mitred Corners

By Heather Buck
on May 01, 2015
With 0 comments

Hi Everyone,

Here is a short video clip on how to mitre the corners when attaching the binding to a quilt:


Happy Stitching Heather

Easy Pin Wheel Blocks with purfect points

By Heather Buck
on February 09, 2014
With 0 comments

I thought today I would provide step by step information for an easy Pin wheel and how to make your points perfect.  I am going to make a 4" finished block which means that it will be 4 1/2" square including 1/4" seams.  You can make your blocks any size using the following steps

   Cut 2 coordinating 4" squares



With right sides together sew a 1/4" seam around the block




Cut in half diagonally from both directions




Press seams to the dark side



Position the two block right sides together.  Make sure that the diagonal seams are seated side by side.  The seams should be facing one each way.  Then stitch the two blocks together






The two blocks are the same press the seams to one side.  When you place the two sections right side together the seams will then be facing one each way this stops all the bulk of the seams being together




With right sides together match up the seam in the middle.  Then rub it between thumb and finger this will seat the seams together.  Then place a pin 1/8" either side of the seam line.  Then stitch the seam without removing the pins.  Provided you stitch slowly over the pins you shouldn't break either needle or pins.




Press seam.  I press this seam open and not to one side as there is less bulk along the seam this way.


I hope this has been of some help.   Seating your seams together and placing a pin either side of the join works for all seams not just those on the diagonal.


Happy Stitching









Keeping your quilt square

By Heather Buck
on December 07, 2013
With 1 comments

We have all at some stage had problems with borders fluting and not sitting flat. How many of you cut your borders longer than needed attach them to your quilt and then trim away the excess fabric. This is not the way to have your borders sit flat.

Always measure through the middle of your quilt in at least three different places (not along the edge where the border is to be attached). Take the average of these 3 measurements and cut your border strips to this length.


Mark the ¼ points on both your quilt and the border. This means mark at the quarter, half and three quarter points. Match up these points on the quilt and border, and then join them to your quilt easing between the pins if necessary. This will help your quilt maintain its shape.


Happy Stitching



Mitred Borders

By Heather Buck
on November 03, 2013
With 1 comments

Hi Everyone,

I was at a loss for what to use as this months tip until my sister visited yesterday with a query on how to mitre corners for the borders of a block.  This was a light bulb moment for me as I thought this is the perfect tip for this month.  I love the professional look a mitred border can give to a quilt.  It is perfect for border prints that if mitred correctly make a frame for a quilt.


Mark the centre point of each side of the quilt and the centre point of each of the strips. One strip at a time match the centre of the quilt and the centre of the strip. Make sure that the excess fabric hangs evenly over both ends of the quilt. Sew border to quilt starting exactly ¼” in from edge of quilt and finishing exactly ¼” in from the end. Repeat on all four sides of the quilt being careful to fold the excess border fabric away from where you are stitching.


To mitre the corners pin the quilt in half diagonally with right sides together. Making sure that the border lay exactly on top of each other. Then lay a ruler on the folded diagonal line of the quilt and extend this across the border. Draw the line in place with a washout marker. Pin so that the fabrics don’t move paying particular attention to any stripes that need to match. Then stitch along the drawn line from the quilt to the edge of the border. Press and trim away the excess fabric. Repeat with the other corners.



Happy Stitching Heather









Reversible Binding

By Heather Buck
on August 29, 2013
With 0 comments



If the front and back of your quilt is made using totally different fabrics and the binding that you want to use on the front of your quilt just wont match the back of your quilt a reversible binding is a great way to finish your quilt.


Firstly choose the two fabrics for your binding.

From the fabric that matches the front of your quilt cut enough 1" wide strips to go around your quilt and join together into a continuous length.

Cut 2" wide strips from the fabric that matches the back of the quilt and join together into a continuous length.

Join the 1" and 2" strips together and press in half down the length with raw edges together




Attach to the right side of the quilt with the binding that was cut 1" against the front of the quilt.  Fold over to the back of quilt and slip stitch in place.

The seam between the two fabrics becomes the fold on the edge of the quilt



Happy Stitching Heather


Transferring designs for Stitcheries

By Heather Buck
on August 02, 2013
With 3 comments

Hi Everyone,

As you can all tell from lots of my patterns I love stitcheries.  I find them a great way to relax and unwind at the end of the day.  I also find them a great way to pass the time in airports and on planes as we trek around the country to the numerous Craft shows we exhibit at.



 To transfer your design from the pattern to fabric firstly choose a good quality washout marker and preferably a fine one that most of your stitching will cover.  If you choose to use a texta style marker this leaves a heavy line which can be hard to remove.

I use a light box but if you don't have one a sunny window will do the same thing just tape the design and fabric to the window then you will be able to see the drawing through the fabric so that you can trace it onto the fabric.


With stitcheries I back them with a stabilizer called liteweft.  It is light weight and very soft, if you attach the stabilizer before tracing on the design it can be hard to see some of the finer details.

I always transfer the design first and then press the stabilizer to the back of the fabric.  I am always careful not to over press.  I press over the design as lightly as possible but heavily enough to still melt the glue then I press around the design to make sure I have the two layers bonded well together.


If you are worried about the possibility that your marker might not wash out test on a scrap of fabric before transferring the design to your fabric


To remove the markings after the stitchery is finished I use a cotton bud dipped in water and gently dab wherever the marker shows.  Sometimes you may need to do this several times as the water may just dilute the dye from the marker and spread it out as a pale shadow.

Happy Stitching



Clover Kanzashi Flower Makers

By Heather Buck
on July 02, 2013
With 0 comments

Hi Everyone,


I have had a lot of fun Demonstrating the Flower Makers at some of the Craft and Quilt fairs this year.  I thought I would share some of the tips with you.  There are a lot of different templates and at least 2 sizes in each.  Each petal shape has its own template.

Use a heavy thread like a Hand quilting thread for the gathering thread

Cut the thread long enough for all the petals to be made on the one thread.

Cut fabric slightly wider than the template fold fabric over and place the fold of the fabric into the fold of the template click the template shut.  Cut the fabric away around the outside of the template.  This gives all the petals a uniform size.


Templates have numbered holes start at number 1 on the side that says start and thread through the gathering thread following the numbers.  When finished remove the template and pull up the gathering thread.  This completes one petal.  Repeat until you have as many petals as you would like.


Make a simple flower using 5-6 petals this is ideal for a small hair clip to decorate a bag

or for 3 dimensional flower on a wall hanging. Flowers can be sew in place with a button

To make larger flowers use more petals 10-12.  This also means a larger hole in the middle of the flower that will need covering.  Use a hot glue gun and a piece of felt to cover the hole at the back.  For the front decorate with another smaller round of petals or a yoyo and finish with a button.


Mix up the petal shapes for an interesting effect.  I have used 3 different petal types for this flower.  For a more 3 dimensional look when assembling the flower after attaching felt over the back of the hole, put some hot glue into the front of the hole and press the second row of petals into the hole.  The more firmly the top row of petals is pressed into the centre the more 3 dimensional the look.


Flower Frills are made a little different to the other flowers.  The fabric is folded within  a card template the scallop edge trimmed and a thread passed through the folds at the point.  Approx. 20 petals are needed to complete each flower.  The flower above was then pressed flat in the middle with a dob of Hot Glue and a button.


Have some fun with the flowers they can be used as brooches, scarf pins, Hair clips and on Hairbands, also use them to decorate bags and on a 3D wall hanging.  If your attending a Melbourne cup luncheon this year make yourself a unique floral arrangement for your hat or fascinator.

Decorate a door wreath, table decorations.  There must be lots of other things that I haven't thought of here.


This is a great way to use up a few fabric scraps from the stash.

We have the templates available atwww.bay-window.com.au/Products.aspx?Cat=Clover+Flower+Makers


Happy Stitching













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