One day, I will totally follow through with my intention to start making Christmas presents early and finish them on time. However, Christmas 2014 was no break from my usual tradition of being up in the wee small hours of Christmas Eve/Christmas Day frantically trying to finish making something, and I didn’t manage to finish anything like the amount of things I wanted to make. That’s par for the course too, and a “tradition” I’d really like to give up!
So here are the things I did manage to get done:This is the festive table set I made for my sister and her husband for their first Christmas together as a family with their little girl. The centre is a pattern I’ve done before, the table mats are based on a “stars ‘n’ snowballs” pattern that one of the Quilt Club ladies was doing as part of an evening class at the local college. After watching her fight with the pattern and all the tiny HSTs (they’re 1″ finished), I decided to try it with Flying Geese units instead, which I found worked very well. These are also the first Flying Geese I’ve ever made; given how tiddly they are (1″ x 2″), I think they came out very well! Probably 95% of the piecing on these was done on mum’s Huskystar, in fact, with only the last bits of table mat assembly done on my shiny new machine.
Here’s some slightly shaky FMQ done on my new Pfaff! Given it was mostly done by eye, I’m actually quite pleased with it. When I first saw this pattern, it was quilted like this and I liked how it looked, so I’m glad I’ve had the chance to try it now myself. The stitch length’s all over the shop though, I need to work on that…
Straight-line quilting on the table mats. I freaking LOVE the built-in walking foot of the Pfaff, not to mention the locking-stitch and thread-cutting functions! Absolutely FAB! The star motif is also repeated on the centre of the small red stars, but is harder to see. Also horrible not-matching points. 🙁 I was in a complete rush to finish these so that I could throw them in some wrapping paper and rush off up the road to hand them over to my sister so they’d have them to open on Christmas day, so I just snapped a few pix of whatever.
The finished set, all bound and ready to be wrapped up! I did machine binding with ready-made satin bias binding due to the time constraints. A couple of them were done up-side down because I’d never done all-machine binding before, but it’s not too obvious.I backed them all with this fun pine cone fabric I got from fab fabric warehouse Abakhan.
These are the giant Dresden plates I made for part of mum’s present – new Aga lid covers.Her old ones were getting really sad-looking, and in any case didn’t match our red Aga at all, being as they were a hot pink floral print. I used two layers of batting; one heat-resistant layer and one layer of “normal” batting (I think it was a polycotton blend) to really pad them and help keep in the heat. The combination was surprisingly annoying to quilt, but I managed.
The back is also heat-resistant fabric, the tops of Agas do get pretty hot.
The last thing I managed to make was this tea cosy – this was what kept me up very late on Christmas Eve! It’s very loosely based on a tutorial I found and a teacosy belonging to my sister, and was made mostly from memory and desperation. It came out rather too big for the teapot I intended it for, and I must re-do the elastic because at 2:30am I don’t really know what I’m doing, but it was very educational and I generally like it. And it does fit another larger teapot really well. And now I’ve seen a better pattern, I’m going to make a second one that fits more snugly.Here’s a group shot. I intended to make some pot holders as well, and maybe a table runner, but work and helping with my niece took priority. But there’s still mum’s birthday on the 5th of January! 😉