This block is made from a photo. I take the photo media to a printer and have two 11×17 photos printed on regular paper. One serves as my “go to” or master and the other is cut into pattern pieces. In this example, the skyline was cut out as one piece. The paper was used as a pattern to cut the dark blue fabric into the skyline. I used a glue stick to secure the skyline fabric to the cloudy sky fabric. Once the glue stick dried, I used the buttonhole stitch feature on my machine to outline the skyline and secure it permanently to the sky background.
The next section of the photo was a line of trees appearing between the skyline and the lake. I used a fabric in a similar tone to that in the photo and let it represent the treeline. This was also cut out using the paper as the pattern for the fabric. The tree fabric was then glued on top of the skyline portion of the block with a glue stick. Having the master photo available is very helpful in deciding where to place the treeline on the block. When the glue stick dried, I once again used the buttonhole stitch to secure the treeline to the skyline. This made a stitching of 3 layers, but the machine seemed to have no problem with this thickness. When you stitch through dried glue stick, the needle and thread do not become sticky at all and the fabrics remain flat without interfacing or paper behind as can be required with a wide satin stitch.
The lake composed the entire foreground of this photo. I placed a light blue fabric under the tree line, glued it in place with the glue stick and then buttonhole stitched the bottom of the treeline to the water fabric. I used the rotary cutter and cutting mat to trim the sides of the “water” and align them with the skyline and treeline.
My Dallas Skyline block was now complete. I placed sashing around the block and prepared to incorporate it into the quilt.
When the quilting was done, I used a pattern of small choppy waves for the water quilting and swirling wind for the sky quilting. The city skyline was outlined in the quilting.
This photo was taken from the shore of White Rock Lake in Sunset Bay.
Granny and me with the Sunbonnet Sue quilt she made me.
This is my grandmother with me and the Sunbonnet Sue quilt she made from scraps I provided. It includes scraps from a lot of dresses, skirts and blouses I made in high school. We didn’t call it recycling back then, but it was.
I am so proud to have this photo which I did not even remember being taken.
When you complete your quilt, you will want to consider binding options. Some quilts are bound by folding the quilt backing around to the front. The backing is first trimmed to an even distance from the quilt top all the way around. The outer edge is folded over about a half-inch and pressed in place. Pin this pressed edge to the front of the quilt, at least a quarter-inch inside the edge of the quilt top. The folded edge is then hand or machine stitched to the quilt top.
At the corners, fold the edge in at a 45 degree angle and then miter the edges together at the corner.
Fold the corner again until it is the same width as the sides.
When you fold the two side pieces towards the quilt top, they should form a mitered edge. Adjust until the two edges meet in the center of the corner and pin in place. Stitch the mitered corner.
Sometimes you may wish to use a binding of a different color or from a different fabric. Commercial seam binding is a readily available option. The problem with commercial seam binding is that it comes in solid colors. There are a variety of colors available, but many times the shade of your desired color is not compatible with your quilt fabrics.
To circumvent this color and fabric print problem, you may wish to make your own seam binding. You can choose a fabric from the quilt top or another coordinating fabric.
Make sure that the fabric has been washed and pressed before you begin. Unwashed cottons will very likely shrink and disfigure your quilt.
Place the fabric on your cutting mat. You can cut your strips on the bias and use a bias tape maker to form perfect folds for attaching the binding to your quilt. Cutting mats such as this one have a bias line marked on the grid.
Some quilters prefer to cut the strips on the straight grain of the fabric because it does not stretch. Binding cut on the bias stretches and folds easily, but can pucker if too much stretch occurs along the stitched edge.
Cut the strips to the width of your bias tape maker. This tape maker measures 2-3/4 inches. Strips can be cut at 2-1/2 or 2-3/4 inches. There are many bias tape makers available at sewing and quilting stores. They come in a variety of widths. Check your bias tape maker to make sure you are cutting the right width for your strips. To increase the length of your strips, cut the fabric ends at 45-degree angles. Place the 45-degree cut edges together with right sides together. The strips should form an L-shape. Stitch together on wrong side of fabric. Press strip, pressing seams open. Continue until you have long enough binding strip for the entire quilt.
Feed the fabric strips through the bias tape maker and press the folds as they come out the flat end.
Fold the pressed strips so that the folded edges match up. Press the folded edges together making a crease in the center.
When binding strip is complete, loop it in long folds or roll it up to keep the creases from flattening out before you pin them to the quilt edges.
Pin binding strip to the quilt edge on the back. Miter corners. Stitch binding strip to back of quilt by machine or by hand.
Turn quilt to front and pin binding in place. Edge of binding should overlap edge of quilt top by about 1/4-inch. Make sure your binding strip is folded evenly and does not have puckers or stretched areas. Hand or machine stitch front of quilt and binding together, mitering corners.