Digital Computer Quilting - Sunflower Illusions

Isn't this quilt gorgeous?!   I love those blues and the compass units really remind me of sunflowers.

I have been curious for a while to try the digitized Quiltworx designs for some of her patterns.  So far I have done a Prismatic Star and Rocky Mountain Bear Claw.   Rocky Mountain made me realize sometimes there can be more work setting up before the first stitch is taken... and that I could freehand a design just in the amount of time required to mark the boundaries of that unit in the computer so that I can fit a design inside that area.   SMH.  But edge to edge designs are the same way, as you work with them (handguided or computer), you learn which ones will stitch out no fuss and which ones will require extra time to match up designs across your quilt so you can make better decisions about what can be accomplished in a reasonable amount of time. 

Anyway, several clients left me quilts last year for when I was ready to venture into computer custom quilting with the digitized Quiltworx designs.  This is Lou Ellen's Sunflower Illusions.

Busy backs.   Sometimes I really am thankful for a busy back.  A solid color backing or high contrast to thread color really add stress to my life because not only do I have to ensure that stop and start looks fantastic on the front, it must look fantastic on the back.   And we have hours and hours of quilting before that area is exposed on the backside.  Some mottling or design to the backing is really appreciated.

2 thread colors.  While the blue was not distracting on the yellow for the star points, I felt it would be most effective to use a yellow for the sunflower centers.   I used Glide's Cleopatra for the centers and Isacord aqua shade for the rest of the quilt.  Quilters Dream 70/30 batting.

For example, if I were using a design that stitched INSIDE the brown (or outside in the yellow) points, I must mark my area in the computer by moving my maching head and pushing a button at the bottom of the point and then at the top of the point and continue around the compass in that manner.   I could stitch a simple design in that amount of time LOL!  And I have not even fit a design into that space (Rocky Mountain had that type of quilting)..  Even here with an overall type design, there are THREE sets of starts and stops.   I could not find anyway to join these designs to stitch as one continues section.   Very labor intensive.   Maybe I'll learn better techniques as I gain experience.   Let's hope that happens!   I love these designs but I can't have them taking even longer than hand guided custom.  Then again the designs are very detailed so maybe the price point moves up just a little from where I was hoping these would come in.   And the thread - Lots of thread consumption on this one!

Original feather border in design.   I felt the feather was too large scale already, I sure was not going to double its size.

Lou Ellen skipped the simple border  on the pattern and added the geese border from the Prickly Pear pattern set along with bricks to create a stunning border for this quilt.   I needed to find something else for that border as I just could not increase that 6" pattern into a 12" mitered corner design.  The feathers were too large.  I played with a p2p and while I have a few intersections that are not perfect, this was a good design to learn with and try to make touch from row to row.   All those starts and stops!   Most of those dots represent and start and stop!  Oh my gosh...   I'm not sure about this Judy computer custom quilting.   Very labor intensive and then once you finally can stitch out a block, it only takes a few minutes but you need to stand there to bury threads and tell the computer to continue to the next block when finished.  If I do many of these, I'm afraid I will have to invest in a lift for that longarm and better lighting.   But... I'm still forging ahead with digitized custom as well as edge to edge quilting on my computerized machine.  Too many amazing designs out there and I just have to do this!