Premier Issue: January 2009

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Fabric-ation online

The Fabric-ation

A Four Friends and Fabric e-publication

Happy New Year!

It’s the one-year anniversary of the Four Friends and Fabric website and a great time to send the first e-newsletter to update you on new things at the studio. But first, I want to thank my wonderful customers – you have all been very supportive, and I truly hope that your quilts are in use this winter!

Karla’s Korner

Studio Machines

I have three machines in my studio – Libby, Emi and Ally - they are named because they are kind of like my dependents! Yes, I admit my friends became afraid to go to quilt shows with me for fear I would buy another machine and they would have to give up their seat in the car for the return trip!

Libby is the longarm quilting machine, an APQS Liberty – purchased in August of 2007, she has her own room in my home and is threatening to cause the removal of a wall so that she can stretch out!

Emi is the embroidery machine, a Janome 11000 – she is the relative newcomer of the group so the learning curve is still steep, but she personalizes beautifully and can convert digital files to embroidery.

Ally is the allover workhorse, a Janome 6500 – she pieces, binds, provides fancy stitches and even makes buttonholes if she is bribed with enough chocolate!


To quilt or not to quilt . . . what a silly question!

The studio now owns a wonderful new tool called the Circle Lord. It is a template tool with hundreds of patterns and combinations, and in no way is it limited to circles! The straight and curved crosshatching template is the newest arrival (see first photo below), and it provides a great background to set off appliqué work.

Wavy crosshatching Combo Circle Lord option
Concentric stars

A large Superior Thread order has also arrived, and adds great color to LibbyLand! Libby much prefers this particular type of thread, and as the studio increases the number of color choices on hand the turnaround time for your project will improve.

Quilting Motif Enhancements

Have you ever tried to draw a picture with a mouse? I have, and it doesn’t work very well! I have recently purchased an electronic drawing tablet. It allows me to draw quilting motifs on a tablet with an electronic pen, and they appear on the screen. With the help of the Photoshop software, this means that I can layer a suggested quilting motif on top of a digital image or scanned version of your quilt block or top. The combined image helps customers to visualize what the finished quilting will look like on the top, and since the entire image is digitally captured, it can be uploaded to the website or emailed for viewing and selection!

Below is an example - on the right, possible quilting motifs are drawn in both black and white electronic ink so they can be seen easily:

Quilt motif example
Quilt motif sample


In the future, this portion of the Fabri-cation will be devoted to embroidery news. Emi has ten different built-in fonts. A wonderful chest of embroidery thread has arrived, and I am currently learning about stabilizer choices and hooping techniques. Below is an example of a pieced-in personalization block (last names have been removed to protect the privacy of the customer).


Upcoming Trips

There is a wonderful quilt show in Bloomington, Indiana every March. It is held at the Convention Center and has a great mixture of vendor booths, quilts and classes. The main floor can be enjoyed in a few hours (which saves your feet and is less overwhelming) and provides great inspiration for starting those spring projects! If you live in central Indiana and have a chance, check out this show March 5-7 - visit the website for more information: Indiana Heritage Quilt Show.

Questions about the website? Contact Karla@FourFriendsAndFabric

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