Framed!

Round Two of framing my quilted works - I'm new at this for the most part so take a seat on the learning roller coaster and expect updates as I refine my process. For today I have two examples to share with you using the same framing technique. I do not have step by step photos for you but I think my explanations will allow you to try the process. This is basically a two step process - 1. create the main quilted element, and 2. create and apply the quilted frame wrapping fabric.

Here is Glinted Moss, an abstract interpretation of moss on the forest floor. The finished framed piece is 20 x 20 inches, the center main piece measures 17 x 17 inches.


Here's a close up view of the corner. I created the center quilt element as a completed quilt - it is composed of the quilt top, batting and a backing fabric - the backing fabric is the same as the fabric used for the frame treatment. I finished the quilted center using the pillowcase technique, adding my quilting after "pillowcasing" the top.

After completing the main quilted element I moved onto preparing the fabric for the framing wrapping treatment - I used a beautiful Stonehenge from Northcott. My frame in this case was a pre-stretched canvas frame that I had on hand. I calculated how large my frame wrapping fabric needed to be to cover the front of the frame and wrap around the back. I cut my piece of fabric, backed it with batting, and quilted it with a few different color threads - I did not quilt the center portion of this fabric since it will not be visible, nor did I use a backing fabric since it will not be visible.

After quilting I stretched the fabric over the frame and used my staple gun to fix it to the frame as you would if you were upholstering something.
Corners - my enemy. Next time I try this I plan to go to my framing store to have the framer show me how to handle the corners - I really want to make them sit flatter. This was my first attempt using this framing technique - I decided I did not like the unfinished edge so I made some changes in my next piece.

Here's The Summer Still - it measures 10 x 12 inches finished, the center main quilted element measures 8 x 10 inches. For this piece I used stretcher bars to create the framing structure.

I created the center element as above using the pillowcase method to finish the edges; however in this piece I did all of my quilting on the top / batting portion of the quilt, prior to pillowcasing. I was trying to create a degree of depth to this piece so I chose to use black fabric as the backing for the center element and was very happy with the shadowing effect.

As you can see, I pieced the frame wrapping fabric. Initially I was going to try to match the wrapping piecing to the main element piecing, but after auditioning the process decided I could achieve more depth by not matching the piecing lines.

When it came to quilting the frame wrapping fabric I used batting, and in this case chose to use a backing fabric since it would be visible on the back of the piece. This piece was small so I quilted the entire piece, including the center portion - it was just easier.

I refined my stapling technique in The Summer Still by allowing enough fabric so that I could turn the edges under, avoiding the raw edges on the back of the frame.

Attaching the main quilting element - this applies to both examples - Once I had the frame treatment applied to the frame I then attached the main quilting element to the framing fabric by hand applique. I think it would be very difficult - next to impossible - to attach the main quilting element to the framing fabric before stretching it to the frame - it would never end up being centered. There you have it - my developing framing process. You are definitely going to see more of this from me - I really like the finished look.

Now for a great party menu. We had a bunch of family over on Sunday for dinner and I made a great menu that I wanted to share with you. I actually think there was an element of clairvoyance in my menu development. I was not following the soccer world cup - had no idea who was playing in the finals - yet I chose to make a Spanish themed menu, and low and behold, Spain won. Cool - wonder what else I could predict with my menus?

My whole dinner was based on a recipe from Brian Boitano - yes, the skater, turned Food Network host. About a year ago I caught his show and saw him make paella burgers and thought they sounded so delicious. Here they are - they were fantastic - we devoured them!!! They are made with ground chicken, chorizo (a spicy sausage) and scallops, along with other seasonings - fantastic and so simple. They were to have been grilled, but 5 minutes into the grilling process the gas ran out - so into the saute pan for finishing - actually 3 saute pans - I was feeding a crowd.Now I know I promised lots of photos - but what can I say - I enjoy my company too much, and a lot of peach sangria had mysteriously disappeared ... sorry!

I used my Tapas cookbook from Penelope Casas for a few of the recipes - this is hands down the best tapas cookbook available - I've had it for years - it's falling apart from overuse - everything in it is amazing. If you can find it - buy it!

Here's the menu:

Beverage
Peach Sangria

Appetizers
Squash Blossoms stuffed with Lemon Basil Brebis
Fried Okra
Swiss Chard Canape
Pickled Carrots (from my last post - they're history - my nieces loved them!)

Dinner
Paella Burgers with Pimento Mayonnaise
done "shooter style"
Vegetable Salad in Romesco Sauce (Tapas)
Anise Flavored Beet Salad (Tapas)

Dessert
A Duo of Granitas - both from Granita Magic
Peach Granita
Saffron, Cardamom and Honey Granita