My Four Seasons Wallhanging

Maureen Greeson © 2006

   
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This crazy quilt project has been a work in progress for the past year along with several other ideas I have going. This wallhanging is intended for over the headboard of my bed and will be 18"x44" when completed.

It is pieced using one fabric, a light turquoise dupioni silk. It has to be cut and pieced as you would a crazy quilt using a variety of fabrics because each piece is topped with a different antique lace. The laces chosen ranged in color from white to a peachy tan and were sewn into the seams as I added each piece of dupioni. In some cases, other laces and motifs were sewn on top for added dimension.

Because I like to pre-plan my piecing, I normally do a full size drawing of my crazy quilt projects before I begin piecing. Then I trace the reverse of the drawing onto muslin, and use this as the backing for my piecing using the drawn lines as my stitching guide.

I cut the paper drawing apart to use the individual pieces as my patterns. If it is not possible to stitch and flip a piece, then I trace it onto freezer paper, cut, iron the edge to be appliquéd over paper, and stitch it down. Sometimes it works better to sew several sections together using paper piecing before sewing it to the muslin. This does away with the need to make individual squares and the technique works well for any size quilt. Just study your drawing and number each piece in the order that will make assembly the easiest.

Winter, Spring, Summer, and Autumn are the ladies that were my inspiration for this wallhanging. I am concentrating on Winter and Spring for this article. Summer and Autumn will be in the next issue of CQMagOnline and when I get the entire wallhanging finished, I will submit a picture.

The first thing I had to do was find an oval shape that would fit all four ladies. I then traced the oval onto four pieces of silk organza. Using these tracings, center one oval over each lady, and sew completely around the oval. Trim the seam, clip curves, cut an opening down the center of the organza, turn, and press.

Then I cut three ovals of fleece for each lady starting with the largest one 1/4" smaller than the lady oval and decrease the size by 1/4" for each of the other two. Place the smallest fleece oval on your CQ first, followed by the medium fleece then the largest fleece, and the lady oval last.

Appliqué and embellish around the edge as desired. I used a minimal amount of embellishment as I did not want to overshadow the ladies. You can use this technique for any print, change the shape as desired, and embellish it to fit your theme.

WINTER:
My embellishments for this lady started with the addition of an antique chenille motif on the left of the oval and an antique lace flower motif on the upper right. The only highlight that seemed to be needed for these motifs were beads in various sizes. I used 6, 4, and 2mm Amazonite beads for the bead flowers which were made by forming a circle using doubled thread and 5 of either 6 or 4mm beads. Leave an end long enough to tie off once you have gone through the 5 beads. Take the thread through these beads again, picking up a bead 2mm smaller between each of the larger beads. I then tied off by taking the thread through my fabric and stitching the flower down. You will also have to stitch through the fabric with the ends of the thread coming through the bead where you started the flower. I used a length of tatted lace to finish the edge of Winter and added a few seed beads to add sparkle. The seed beads on the tatted lace were placed to make them appear as if they were woven in as part of the design of the lace. 
Winter
 
Spring
SPRING:
First I stitched a length of buds'n'bows trim around the oval as a base for adding soft-colored silk ribbon flowers. They were all that were necessary to give this lady the look that spring is in the air. To me, simple stitches with silk ribbon always translate to elegance more than any other embroidery. Only five stitches were required to surround Spring. They are the straight stitch, the lazy daisy, the loop stitch, the French knot, and the stem stitch for the few stems used. 

Watch for Summer and Fall next time.

Resource: Maureen Greeson Web Store
The Four Seasons can be found in the Vintage Images on Cotton section.
Maureen Greeson Newsletter

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