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Thursday, 22 May 2014

POST CARDS on Canadian Quilt Talk Radio

I'm teaming up with Brandy-Lynn Maslowski this week to get you all excited about a big postcard swap!  Brandy-Lynn is the host of Canadian Quilt Talk Radio and the Explore Fibre blog (linked at the bottom of the post).  We thought it would be fun to do a CQT podcast about Fabric Art Postcards.  She is organizing a quilted postcard themed swap.  My job is to offer a little tutorial and have supplies available for those who can't easily find what they will need.

hang tight... the link is way at the bottom of this post...

That's Brandy-Lynn.  Look at her.  How can you not love her!?  She's been doing this show for nearly a year and she is so full of enthusiam!  It was fun meeting with her to do this.

A note about Postcards.  I blab about them a lot.  I teach them.  I swap them.  I sell them.  It's contagious.  So if you haven't caught the bug yet, now is the time.  They have been a wonderful springboard for me that brought me from quilting to art.  I highly encourage anything that gets people thinking more creatively.  PLUS - you could make some new quilter penpals in the process. : )

Where to begin...

For most swaps I've been in, the required sizes for swaps are a standard 4x6 inches.  The cards are fabric front, fabric back, and a fabric stabilizer in the middle.  You need to pick something thick and stiff.  I use an interfacing called 'Flexi-Firm' from Fabricland that is double-sided fusible.  It works so well that I honestly haven't explored other options.  I believe many people use Timtex from you local quilt stores (correct me if I'm wrong).  It is white, about an eighth of an inch thick, and so stiff that you are unable to fold it.  THAT is perfect for a quilted postcard.  You can stitch right through it.  I buy Flexi-Firm on a roll and precut them to look like this.

available at my Etsy shop if you need...
I love that these are doublesided fusible.  You can put your background fabric on and press.  Done.  Smooth.  Adhered.  PLEASE make sure you use parchment paper on top AND bottom before you press, otherwise you will glue it onto your ironing board and wreck your iron too.  I take a piece of parchment paper and fold it in half.  That way, any pressing I do is done by putting the postcard-in-progress between the sheets like a book.

Step 1.  Begin with your surface design.  (Really - like we mentioned in the podcast, anything goes.)  YOU be the designer.  Be inspired by the theme.  Use any scraps you have on hand.  It's wise to use white in your bobbin so that the back looks clean.  Often women will fues the backing fabric and then collage & stitch or applique & stitch.  You can machine stitch.  You can hand stitch.  Doll it up!  Just ensure that there are no loose parts that can get caught in the sorting machines at the post office.  **Very Important**

all fused on... ready to stitch

I love using Lapel Stitck for the little parts.  It's an acid free fabric glue stick that I bring to my classes in place of fusible web.  SUPER easy for small projects.

When it comes to stitching - pick any thread, any stitch... you can couch, bobbin play, hand stitch, or do some free motion.  The sky is the limit!  When I do my workshop, we start by looking through all the cards I've received.  I think all the eye candy from so many different artists is very inspiring.  Check out the variety of quilted postcards HERE on flickr to see what I mean.

Step 2.  Fuse on a light solid backing fabric to cover all the back threads.  Do this only after your surface design is complete.  This way, you have a smooth back surface to write on.



Step 3.  Trim down overhanging fabrics and threads using the sides of the stabilizer as your guide.  Then stitch the edges closed.  Often, people use a satin stitch working all the way around, pivoting at the corners.  You can use any stitch.  You can even couch fibres or yarns.  I always tell my students that the border you add can really influence or change the look of your postcard.  You can make it pop, or draw out certain colors.


Step 4.  Clip off any loose or stray threads if you are mailing it 'naked'.  Liberate yourself!  Mail it envelope-free like a traditional postcard.  I dare ya.

Step 5.  Put the words POST CARD at the top of the back and draw a line down the centre.  Address the back on the right, write a note on the left.  Stick a stamp on the back top right corner and pop it in a mail box.  It mails for one regular 'P' stamp within Canada.  If you are mailing to any other country or overseas, please check your standard letter mailing rates.  When I swap, we always always mail postcards without an envelope. Then it gets inked and dated and serves as a legitimate well-traveled piece of mail.  In my opinion, this makes it more of a keepsake. 

Postcards backs as pretty and personal as the fronts.  : )

Don't forget to sign it!  After all, it is your creation.

Okay... now I'm off to listen in to the Podcast.  It will be #46 at the top of the list.  Please sign up to swap with us at the bottom of the page HERE.  It's a one-to-one themed swap.  If you sign up 3 times, you'll be making 3 cards & receiving 3 cards from different people.

* * * * * 

Enjoy!  Have fun creating!  And thank you so much to Brandy-Lynn.  : )  CLICK HERE to go to her website, check out her her tutorials, see her new book, listen to the podcast, and sign up for the exchange.  : )


4 comments:

Karen said...

I just listened to the podcast, as you "tweeted" from the prairies (or at least your birds did! :) Awesome, Monika!

Kit Lang said...

I've never done a post-card before, but it seems like fun so I've signed up. Thanks for the tips on how to make! I have a roll of flexi-fiber that I bought at Fabricland a couple of years ago for another project but it didn't work out. I'm glad I can use at least a bit of it for something else! :)

Monika Kinner-Whalen said...

I'm signing up four times : )

Katelyn S. Bolds said...

I love this! I'm a beginner quilter and this seems like a great project to start on.

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