Construction Complete

IT’S FINISHED!

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And literally in the nick of time, too.  I finished the binding mere minutes before I had to go out, but it’s done.  🙂  There’s some bits I would change and some bits I’m not happy with (aren’t there always?) but on the whole I’m pretty damn proud of it.

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The backing is a Marvel fabric I found in Birmingham, which I just couldn’t resist, and I used left-over yellows from the piecing to make a scrappy binding.  It finishes at approximately 36 x 48”, which seems to have become my preferred size for baby quilts.  Taken all together, it probably took me less than a week to make, but I was lucky I had the chance to really focus on it and keep the momentum going, or it would never have gone done in time.

Some of my favourite bits:

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Gotham’s graffiti artists are an educated bunch!  😀  I found this equation fabric in a shop in Beaumaris on Anglesey and couldn’t resist scooping it up.

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I’m pleased with how this tower came out, it was a bit that was really bothering me about how it would go together and it changed shape quite a bit during the design phase.  It was paper-pieced and ended up working well, even with tiddly pieces.

Awkward bits:

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Right in the middle there is probably the most awkward partial seam in the whole quilt.  It definitely needs sorting if there’s ever a Gotham 2.0.  (It’s not stained, that’s just drips from the iron.)

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Perhaps designing several blocks of 1/4 x 1/2” finished bits was not the best idea.  I know right?!  Who knew?!  It came close to working but isn’t right, so I’d do that differently next time.

For the quilting, I didn’t really have time to do anything terribly fancy (and I didn’t want to fight the busy buildings), so I ended up with organic straight lines for pretty much everything.  I used different shades of grey Guetermann polyester on the buildings, working mostly vertically but also following the shapes of roofs as applicable, the bat signal light effect was done with variegated yellow cotton from YLI and the sky was horizontal lines in blue polyester.  I used Superior’s Bottom Line in light grey for all of the back, so that it would hopefully not detract too much from Iron Man et al.  Mostly everything was fine, although I did struggle with a bit of puckering and shifting when it came time to quilt the sky, especially towards the top, which was extremely annoying.  I suspect an issue with my pinning, or perhaps it all got loosened up when I was shifting the quilt about during the building quilting (I used the walking foot almost exclusively).  So, things to work on.  Always things to work on!  🙂  But this one definitely counts as a triumph for me, especially given how much I had to hurry to get it done.

Linking up with Let’s Bee Social, Needle & Thread Thursday and TGIFF as and when they go live.  Thanks for looking!  🙂

The Bumper Post of Finished Things

Usually I try and spread things out a bit into dedicated posts, but recently there’s been a fair amount of busy creating and not a vast amount of posting, so things have kind of snowballed.  But in a good “yay things are finished” way, so that’s ok.

Baby Round The World

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This is the finished quilt I posted about here.  Not much to add other than binding, it was an easy finish.  The only bit of drama was this:

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Yep, that feeling when you cut all possible strips from your binding fabric and it still came up too short!  Uff!  Luckily, I had ends left over from the top, so I added in just a small piece of bubbly circles to fill the gap – job done.  No, no pictures of the fill-in bit – I completely forgot.

Shimmering Weekender

It’s done!

It was an absolute pig to get together – it nearly killed me *and* my poor sewing machine!  I’m fairly happy with it, however, and I’m still in complete love with the RK Shimmer 2 line, so that’s good too!  But I’m going to need some time to forget how frustrating it was before I try making another one for me.

Poppy’s Flower Garden

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It’s good to finally get this one done and handed over, I’ve had it on the back burner for too long.  It’s for a friend’s little girl; by chance, they happened to be visiting our area this weekend and little Poppy’s third birthday was just a few days ago, so the timing couldn’t be better.  Unfortunately, I hadn’t made any progress on it since I last mentioned it way back in August!  After a hasty purchase of wadding (I wonder when I’ll finally cave and just buy a bolt?) and some frantic riffling through the stash for a backing (hello fleece!), I quilted up the top sans flower shapes with a FMQ flowers ‘n’ leaves ‘n’ stippling motif:

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My hot pink variegated YLI thread was perfect for this project!  Quilting on the fleece was a challenge because it’s so stretchy – it was hard to stop the quilt from puckering or distorting, I probably needed some stabilising straight stitching first before I started on the FMQ, but once the whole thing was done it looked alright.  It’s interesting how much more obvious the quilting looks on the fleece side!  After the quilting was done, I arranged all my petal shapes (once I’d finished folding the last ones), pinned them approximately in position and then used machine blanket stitch to fix them in place.

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The flower centres were cut from some off-cuts from a strip roll and appliqued on with a zig-zag stitch.

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The binding is yet more left-overs from a strip roll – you might recognise the prints from the Round The World quilt above!  It goes with the front and the back, which makes me really happy, and the recipient seemed really pleased with it, so job’s a good ‘un!  It’s always nice to get something off the UFO pile.

Linking up with Free Motion Mavericks,  Oh Scrap! and Monday Making.  🙂

Science! Baby Quilt

And suddenly, a baby quilt!

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A good friend of mine, who I worked with for four and a half years, had her first baby a couple of weeks ago.  I’d planned to make him a quilt anyway so I already had these fabrics pulled, I just needed a spark of inspiration and a kick up the bum – handily provided by the email announcing his birth!

The colour scheme is based on my friend’s preferences (her favourite colour is blue) and the fact that she is a chemist and her husband is an engineer, so I used the most science-y fabric I had to hand!  These are two of my favourite prints in the quilt:

I chose to do a random arrangement of squares that finished at 9, 6 and 3″ and started with a rough sketch of an arrangement on some graph paper so that I would know how many squares of each size I would need to cut.

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The layout meant there were some partial seams to deal with, but by going slow and thinking carefully about which bits to sew in which order, it all worked out well.  Because I wanted it done and sent off quickly, I decided to do a simple diagonal cross-hatch pattern for the quilting.

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The quilt is backed with a funky chevron print that has a lovely soft feel, and bound with left-overs from piecing the top.  I’m very pleased to say that the whole quilt (other than the wadding) came from my stash.  🙂  It’s all washed so it just needs a label and I can post it off along with a card and some well-earned Cadbury’s chocolate for the proud mum!  🙂

Linking up with Monday Making, Can I Get A Whoop Whoop? and TGIFF (when they go live).  🙂

Birds of a Feather – Finished!

plus_1104_1The quilt for my cousin’s newest little girl is finished.  🙂  I’m quite chuffed with it, especially with how quickly it got done (though it’s pretty straightforward, as patterns and quilting go….).plus_1104_2

It’s bound with scraps left over from making the top.

plus_1104_3Here it is with its “brother” and “sister” quilts.  🙂  (Apparently I really like yellow for baby quilts!)

Linking up (FINALLY! Don’t ask….) with TGIFF over at Sew Fresh Quilts.  🙂

Baby Quilt – Birds and Pluses

plus_0404_9I was thinking of listing this as my entry for A Lovely Year of Finishes for April.  However, my cousin had her third baby (a little girl and the future owner of this quilt) yesterday and the quilt went from being separate squares all over the floor to pieced, basted and quilted in the space of a half a day.  (I’d had the squares cut for some weeks now, but it kind of got sidelined thanks to Marsala Spice demanding lots of floor room.)  Entering it now, when it only needs trimming and binding, seems a bit cheesy!

plus_0404_2The back is That Number Fabric, courtesy of Ikea.  I’d bought some on a whim when I was there a few months ago, and was glad that I had!

plus_0404_7The quilting was done with two variegated cottons from YLI – yellow tones in the needle and pretty variegated pastels in the bobbin – pretty for a little girl; I used the same thread on her sister’s quilt.plus_0404_8It’s not wildly elaborate, as quilting goes, but for babies I’m thinking simple is good – I’m not sure they appreciate heavily quilted, so-stiff-you-can’t-bend-it quilts!  But the Pfaff ate it up in no time – it loves to be presented with a nice long length of fabric to chew through.  I didn’t bother to mark or anything, and didn’t find I needed to.

I’m thinking of calling it “Birds of a Feather”, thanks to the three different bird prints in it:

The one on the left is from a bundle of cute fabrics my sister gave me for my birthday last year, and the the one in the middle was on offer in John Lewis.  And those chicks and eggs are perfect for an Easter baby, I thought!  🙂  I’m quite proud that, other than the wadding, this quilt was made completely from my stash – I didn’t buy any of the fabrics for it “specially”.  (This is a thing to be proud of, yes?  *hopeful face*)  Next I’m going to rootle around and dig out any left-over fabric from the top to make a pieced scrappy binding, and then I just need to find time to go deliver the three quilts (brother and sister quilts are here) to their new owners.  \o/

Finished Things!!!

And on a more cheerful note, squee!  Finished things!  (That are gifts, as it happens.)

Reversible table runner

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We have here a table runner for my aunt and uncle; they came down for a quick visit the other weekend and I managed to finally get some binding on it and give it to them.

Below are the quilts for my cousin’s little boy and girl, which I’ve had in various states of almost finished for ages.  Finally I went on a binding spree and did them both when I had a quiet moment home alone.  And the next time I take it into my head to edge a quilt with black fabric, bind it with more black fabric and hand-finish the binding with black thread, I would like to have some sense slapped into me, please!  It’s basically impossible to do in anything other than natural light, and even then it’s a challenge.  but it’s DONE!!!

Coin Stack

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 Colourful Chevrons

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These have all been finished for a few weeks now, but I had to wait for a dry, calm, sunny day to take them out and photograph them (not to mention needing to brush all the wadding lint off the Coin Stack, which I only managed today).  At this time of year, in this part of Wales, such things are hard to come by!  I’m so glad to have these done and I have a follow-up quilt laid out on the floor now for a little brother or sister (due at the start of April).  It’s a straightforward Plus quilt so it should be quite quick to assemble – just a bunch of 5″ squares.

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(I’ve filled in the gaps and shifted one or two things around, but that’s the gist of it.) With any luck, I might manage to have it done by the time baby #3 appears and be able to give all three kids their quilts at the same time.

Linking up with TGIFF for the first time!  🙂

Baby Chevrons progress

HST blocksThese have been sitting around in a poly-bag for far too long, all trimmed and ready to go, so I finally got up the enthusiasm (and floor space!) to lay out, join and quilt them:Final arrangementThis is the final layout I decided on – a randomly mixed variant really wasn’t working for me.  Annoyingly, I found that I had two pink blocks too many and not enough greens, so I ended up remaking those two with a left-over blue charm square (thank goodness I saved the “spare” two) and reshuffled things a little so the colours flowed better.

I added borders of yellow polka-dots, and backed it with the same:With bordersI still don’t know what I think of these charm squares – they’re quite strange shades, really.  Very hard to match with anything.  But I’m very pleased I struck on this arrangement, it should be cute enough for a little girl.  🙂  Right now I’m most of the way through straight-line quilting it with some multicoloured variegated thread in similar soft colours and it’s looking really good!  More stuff to add to my “needs binding!” pile.  😉

Project Linus – The Scrappening

After finishing the two Bear Adventures tops, I found I had quite a lot of squares and strips left over.  In the spirit of not wanting to waste anything from the charity’s supplies, I cut the strips into more squares, made a big pile of four-patches and then pieced them into four bigger squares in a fairly random way.butterflies_2The sashing and borders are from my own stash.  It reminds me a lot of a window, and the green and yellow looks like dappled forest light.  Although I like this a lot, it’s not really very kid-friendly (it looks like the world’s greenest wall hanging), so I rummaged in my scrap drawer for some colourful bits and threw some butterflies at it:Butterfly WindowMuch better!  😀

The butterflies were added with fusible web, but could do with a bit of zigzag or blanket stitch around them to make sure they stay put and give them a nice bit of definition.  Quilt Club is tomorrow and I’m really looking forward to handing my three Linus tops to Cath so she can add them to the cause.  🙂

Linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

Project Linus Sewing Day

Cath from Quilt Club has been involved with Project Linus for some time, and recently became an organiser for our area.  In a show of solidarity and team spirit, most of Quilt Club showed up to attend her first Project Linus Sewing Day last Thursday.  We were told to turn up armed with our sewing machines only, everything else (including thread) would be provided.Linus_2901_2

She wasn’t kidding!  There was a long table crammed with baskets full of enticing fabrics (why are other peoples’ scraps always more interesting?), wadding, loads of reels of thread (though I ended up using my own because I prefer to piece with cotton).  As well as familiar Quilt Club faces, there were several people I hadn’t met before, including the lady who runs night classes in PW&Q at the local college.  Everyone was very friendly and keen to quilt up a storm of Linus quilts!

Continue reading Project Linus Sewing Day

A Billion WIPs

Doing that WIP Wednesday Thing again!  Does twice count as a habit?

I’ve been muddling along with quite a few different projects recently.  Why is finishing things so hard?  But actually, I am beginning to feel more on top of my current projects.  Woo!

Continue reading A Billion WIPs