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.  😉

Quilting the Japan Fan Club

Japan_Fans_1002_4It’s all gone a bit Art Deco, and I LIKE it!  😀Japan Fans quilting

I did most of the outline quilting on the fans at Quilt Club last week, now I’m working on the straight lines on the “plain” halves of the fan blades.  One half of the curtain is now quilted like this, next I will do the same to the other half and then steel myself for the FMQ.Japan Fans quiltingI was worried that the metallic thread would be too much on the blades (especially the black ones), but I think it helps to differentiate fans from frames, which is important given they’re all the same fabrics!  This is particularly important for the red fans because they sit right next to the red frames.

Linking up to WIP Wednesday over at Freshly Pieced.

Editing to also link up to ALYOF at Sew BitterSweet Designs and Fiber of All Sorts. I’m aiming to have this completely quilted and ready to give to Mum for Mothering Sunday on the 15th.  🙂

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!

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The Scraps of my Heart(s)

After making all the heart blocks for the Wedding Quilt, I was left with a whole bunch of half-square triangles trimmed from the corners.  The larger triangles come from the bases of the hearts, the smaller ones are from the top points of the hearts.heart_scraps_largeheart_scraps_small
I didn’t keep all the off-cut triangles; some weren’t cut well and I chucked some of the smaller ones because I wasn’t sure they’d be big enough to do anything sensible with.  But there’s still a whole bunch of the things!  😮

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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!

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Tutorial – Tea Cosy v.2.0

After making one tea cosy for mum, I decided to make a second for her birthday because I wasn’t completely happy with how the first turned out.  This, then, is how I made tea cosy v.2.0, and it was actually rather easier than the first, as well as fitting the tea pot better.  🙂  (I’ll update with some pix if/when I take some.)Tea cosy

Required (for a good-sized tea pot):

  • Coordinating fabrics; enough to make 20 dresden plate blades 8″ long
  • Scrap of fabric big enough to make the centre circle of the dresden plate
  • 2 1/2″ wide strip of fabric for the elasticated strap (8-10″ long is good)
  • Wadding (I used a heat-resistant wadding, but I think ordinary wadding would be fine too)
  • Lining fabric; must be big enough to cover the completed dresden plate (I used therma-flec, but again, I think ordinary fabric would be fine)
  • Sturdy elastic

All seams are 1/4″ unless stated.

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Creative Oozings #30 – Looking Back, Looking Forward

Well that was an interesting year.  Not the easiest we’ve ever had, what with new babies and household crises, but we seem to have survived, just about!  It has also, for me, been a year of much quilting.  It’s very easy, when reading forum threads and blog posts from apparently super-human peeps churning out king-sized quilts every other day, to feel that I’m not managing much in comparison, but in fact I think I’ve had a fairly good year for actually finishing things, even though I still have some substantial projects outstanding.

Finished Things!

Actually, I think that’s quite a lot of things finished.  Especially since some of them are quite sizeable or have multiple parts.  And there were a couple of little projects that never made it to the point of being photographed (a couple of pot holders and a phone case for mum, iirc.)  *slightly proud face*

Not-Finished Things

  1. That Damn Wedding Quilt!  It’s becoming a serious bugbear now.  I have the fabric I need to do the necessary Bs (border, backing, binding) for it, I just need the confidence, time and space to tackle those last bits.  Oh, and the quilting.  Oh god, the quilting!  Though I seriously hope my new machine will help greatly there, what with the bigger throat space and the huge extension table.  After I’ve cleared mum’s birthday and a couple of outstanding unfinished Christmas presents, I must make this the number one priority; maybe it’ll be done by Sian’s birthday in March (or by their wedding anniversary in June at the latest!).All The Hearts
  2. Japan Fans door curtain.  I started the quilting, then had to stop because I was running out of my chosen metallic thread.  However, I bought plenty more so I have no excuse now.  Chances of me finishing this before mum’s birthday on the 5th are slim-to-none, but there’s always Mothering Sunday!Japan Fans Attic Windows door curtain
  3. Baby quilt #1.  *SO* nearly done!  ;A;  This is the one with the mangled quilting thanks to my cheap-ass walking foot copping out on me.  I’ve unpicked the snaggly bits, I just need to point the Pfaff at it and let ‘er rip.  So to speak.  And then spend AGES brushing off all the linty bits from the wadding that have coated ALL the black fabric.  🙁  Suddenly I get the point of black wadding!Coin stack
  4. Baby quilt #2.  Still in a pile of unconnected, untrimmed HSTs on my cutting table.  🙁  Though I did trim a few more yesterday.  It’s tedious but undemanding work, at least.  When I was doing the festive table set, I figured out a quicker way to trim HSTs before ironing them (very handy given the tiny size of the ones used there), but unfortunately all these are already ironed so I just have to grit my teeth and trim all the sides.HST blocks
  5. Disappearing Nine-Patch.  The back of this is still all over the floor of my craft room, looking sad and reproachful because it was shoved down the to-do list thanks to my focus on Christmas presents.  And the fact that I don’t much like sewing Y seams.  I must be brave and tackle it.Scrappy Lone Star
  6. …Other odds ‘n’ sods.  Like that weird tea-coloured D9P and the scrappy batik squares I made.  Oh, and the hilariously late Advent Calendar.  (It’ll have to be ready for *next* Christmas!)  I’m sure there are more that I just can’t remember right now!  :p  I’m also developing quite a mess of scraps, so at some point I need to spend some time trimming them down into usable squares and doing …something… with them.  Maybe a Linus quilt or two; one of my fellow Quilt Clubbers is now an organiser for the Linus Project and I’m sure she’d welcome the contribution.

I also have vague and not-so-vague plans for more quilty projects, fuelled at least in part by recent fabric purchases.  Sometimes I think I shouldn’t be allowed out unsupervised!  I’ll show off my recent acquisitions in a future post, though.  Whatever else 2015 might bring, I have a feeling there will be quilts in there too!

Creative Oozings #29 – Christmas Presents (Part 1?)

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!

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Creative Oozings #26 – That *PING* Moment and Quilting Worries

Cupid's Bow bargello
The first quilting *PING*: Must. Use. ALL. The. Colours. Ooo, Bargello? Perfect!

It seems that there’s a big debate in the quilting blog world over modern versus traditional styles, as though it were some black/white, either/or, “there can be only ONE!” situation instead of the spectrum that it clearly is.  It’s a discussion that I can only view as an outsider because I’m not very (read: at all) connected to the quilting blogosphere and I’m comparatively new to quilting (less than two years at time of writing).  How could I possibly define my style (or lack thereof) to the rest of the world when I’m still working to develop it?  This is not to say that I’m not inspired by the work of others.  Although I’m pretty anonymous in the grand scheme of things, a real face-in-the-crowd, I do read other blogs if I see things that appeal to me and they’re certainly not all quilting blogs (inspiration comes from the strangest places).  Sometimes I comment.  I try to credit ideas and inspiration wherever possible, and I’m drawn to many aspects and styles of quilting and patchwork, as well as several other crafts.  So I’m not going to say a whole bunch about the application of labels to the general concept of quilting because other people already did that, probably better than I can right now.  Instead, I’m going to take the challenge set by Pretty Bobbins at face value and talk about my quilting process, such as it is, and also some of the uncertainty I feel about quilting and calling myself a quilter (I can’t really talk about connecting with other quilters because I haven’t, really, except for the lovely ladies at Quilt Club).

Continue reading Creative Oozings #26 – That *PING* Moment and Quilting Worries