Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Sticky Mess

I entered a giveaway offered by Laura of slice of pi quilts and won a package of quilting templates designed by urban elementz. Laura included a note and asked me to let her know what I thought about the tear-away pantograph paper. Well... since you asked...

The directions said to use spray adhesive such as 505. I had a little bit left in a can, so perfect. The tissue paper was the right length, it fit my project perfectly, and I used up the last of the spray to adhere the paper to the quilt. I didn't want it to slip around and get weird. My little quilt is 31" x 47." I used iron adhesive batting as well, so that I wouldn't have pins under the tissue paper. It quilted quickly, in less than 30 minutes. I got to practice my FMQ, which was a little trickier than I thought it would be. The pantograph kept me from spiraling into smaller curls. I recall looking at this when I entered the giveaway, thinking "well that looks easy. Who needs a pattern?" I'll tell you who: people who don't practice their FMQ.

So, next the directions said, "once quilted, rip the tear away sheets off the quilt. Note: use tweezers to remove any small bits of tear away paper that might be left under stitches."

I used my seam ripper and found it helped with slicing the paper inside the loops. There was very little ripping of tissue paper because it was stuck to the fabric very well. It took me over 3 hours to remove all of the paper in a very tedious process. I tried using tweezers and my finger nail to remove small bits of paper, but was worried that I'd disturb stitches. Side note: the fabric was sticky! Well, duh.

The paper was sticky. My hands were sticky. The whole process was sticky. It didn't want to let go into the garbage can. By the end of this process I was a teensy bit tense. I figured that I would rinse the quilt and the rest of the tissue paper under threads would dissolve. Wrong. And, the fabric was still just as sticky. So against my better judgement and usual practice for a quilt made from vintage blocks, I used spray wash all over the quilt and washed it again with detergent. Twice. Finally it was not sticky. But the tissue paper was still hanging under threads like Al Gore's chad's in Florida election booths. So I finished picking out the tissue with tweezers as I thought about how to do this differently next time.

My sister Pam, who does custom long arm quilting entirely FMQ said just practice and toss the templates. Sure, but I wanted to try this product. So other than practicing, which is for losers, I thought of using dressmaker's carbon and a tracing wheel. The templates could be reused that way, as well. The quilt would still need to be washed.

The little blocks that had seemed dingy and boring really sparkled after the triple washing. Major bonus. And the quilting, very different for me, was a nice amount for this little baby quilt.

 I used lilac and orange for the flanged binding.

Here is the backing, repro vintage red and white. And my little label with my thimble insignia.
This is one of the finishes for /finish-along-2018-round-2. It will be gifted to a niece who is expecting a baby girl in July.


  1. Beautiful quilt, and this quilting design is great!

  2. Laura of Slice of Pi sent me this email: " Thank you for letting me know, Jane! I'm so glad you were able to use them! I got a good chuckle from your blog post. I, too, did not like how long it took to remove the paper. But I did really like the even quilting design that us non-practicers get. I haven't tried the paper again. I'm still (as you say) a bit tense from all that ripping of paper. My quilt was very large - 72" square - so there was a lot of tweezer time. I'm intrigued about the dress-makers carbon! I've never heard of that product, but I think I could definitely use that for lots of things! I'm definitely going to look into that! Thanks!" I am glad I was honest about me experience. I wonder if the template designer has this experience as well?

  3. This sounds like the time I tried to transfer a quilting pattern to a quilt using press n seal. I bought two rolls of the stuff after someone raved about it and will never use it again! Big sticky mess!

  4. Wow!!! I do not do FMQ and seems it was quite an ordeal for you as well. Someday I will take an in-person class and maybe dip my toes into the ocean of FMQ. The baby quilt has a lovely vintage look to it.