Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Still in the groove

 I am a novice machine quilter.  This morning, doing this lap size (for a friends sister who runs a charity for children with learning difficulties) I have learnt a lot-about stitch length, the wisdom of using pins instead of safety pins (ouch!) to sandwich, rolling the quilt properly, how the walking foot works.    And I keep telling myself that children are not the quilt police!  One down, eight to go!  Binding on next.
In the last few days sewing binge since I have a new sewing room, everything I have done has been for someone else, so last night I sewed some bow ties together for MY quilt. I have over 1000 pieced and ready to be assembled, they finish at 3 inches. This is the layout I have decided on. Most of the knot sections are a different colour to the bows: I had all the squares cut and lots of 1 1/12" strips in the bin, so I used those for the knots. I am pleased with my accuracy on these, they are going together well considering they were pieced over several months.

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Dedicated space.

Yipppppeeee!  I now have a dedicated sewing room, though in true quilter fashion, its too small, even though it's the biggest bedroom in the house!  In the reorganisation, I found lots of orphan blocks that I have sewn up for Linus, just to get them out of the way.   Now I'm webbing a double, that was ready to go, Dancing Sisters Choice. 

Sisters Choice blocks, this will be a gift.
Orphan red moth in a window blocks, with orphan four patch centre strip-all of this was either assembled or pre-cut. Easy!  I just had to cut an outer border.  

Mauve moth blocks, with pre-sewn mini moth centre, border was all that needed cutting.
 There are another three moth Linus quilt tops assembled, in various colours.
Four orphan spiderweb blocks: I tried out the seagull background fabric and it didn't pop enough. I like the juxtaposition of the seagulls with their distant dinosaur relatives on the inner border. Outer blue border was leftover from another project.
Orphan twisted nine patch blocks, Linus size!

I now have seven tops ready to be quilted for Linus. 

I have a few of these done, about 40 of 400 or so, for Perkiomen daydreams. I am really trying to do this as a Leader-Ender project.

So far, so good...

A few quick pics, I want to keep up the momentum!

Monday, 22 December 2014

And the next handquilted project will be...........

The rainbow hexie: these are old pictures, it is in a more advanced state of completion now.

I'm moving my machine to a bedroom, then I will be working on machine quilting
four charity quilts.  

A lot to finish this year, last year I did very little sewing

Sunday, 21 December 2014

The learning curve-a finish!!

1/ Take a picture of the finished quilt before you give it away!  This post will have to make do with old pictures from the making of 'Kiss in the Corner, until I can get a picture from the recipients.

This quilt went everywhere, including on holiday to the Premier Inn. It was my first full size double and my first hand quilted project.

2/ Start small when you are a novice!  Especially with hand quilting, it became overwhelming!

3/ I learnt why hand quilting is done in long lines, mostly. I spent a lot of time wrestling it in circles, as each of those white patches on the twisted nine patch block has two hearts on! And I quilted in each of those small blue areas (I need not have) and the brown squares. Total overkill, but it has a very unique quilting design, as the hearts are all random shapes and sizes and the quilting of the brown patches was governed by the fabric pattern of each.
Making the top was relatively quick, all with fabrics from the stash.

That was the idea, of course, as it was a last minute wedding gift for my sons friend (he was best man at his friends wedding). I was contributing the work and he paid some of the cost.

4/ For me, this is a big lesson, don't tell the recipients something is on the way. I'm a terrible 'finisher' always starting something new, so many ideas, so little time.  It' 3 1/2 years late!!  The SHAME!!! 

This is the closest picture I have to what it looks like now, minus borders. I chose a busy backing, as the quilting was an unknown entity and I didn't know what it would look like. That was a GOOD choice!

Here is a picture with the borders- I didn't quilt the border, controversial! There are small hearts printed all over it so it ties in nicely with the quilting. 

For the binding, I used navy blue, with a backing fabric crumb catcher, I'm really pleased with how that looks.  Sewing the binding down only took a couple of evenings, so it went off with my so yesterday to give to his friends just before Christmas.  Phew!

Monday, 8 December 2014

Reading this week........................

Second in the series.................a favourite author.
This has useful bite sized chapers for that large cup of tea moment!  Eclectic travels and social history of trees. A pleasant, light read

Found this by change in the library, highly recommended workbook for design, contains the basics I learned on my City and Guilds course.

Sunday, 7 December 2014

A bit more scrumbling...........

 And some doodling........

And I have ALMOST finished this!!

Big reveal after Xmas as its a gift!

Thursday, 27 November 2014

I'll tell you a yarn............

I have finished 3 knitted garments in the last few days, they have been long promised to the recipients.  I have also been scrumbling........all works in progress.......they will be put together eventually  for a stairwell wall hanging.

Saturday, 1 November 2014

Another fine mess

A new portable project: I bought this pattern from Ravelry-I'm using it for yarn I buy in charity shops, small balls and random oddments of DK, in the spirit of scrap quilting.  I'll be keeping a ball of something and a hook in my bag for odd moments. I have decided ugly unloved yarn has it's uses.

It's an easy pattern if you can crochet, made in individual units and joined as you go. 
Of course, this colourway is gorgeous!

And this weeks read: informative and poetic.

Thursday, 30 October 2014

The New Mania

I have discovered scrumbling. these are my first attempts that will probably end up as one wallhanging. Embellishments still needed: works in progress. Using yarn oddments (even the smallest lengths), milk bottle caps, fabric scraps.  Beading and patches to hide the ugly bits to follow!

Sunday, 8 June 2014

Quick pictorial update from my mobile

I have done a lot of hand sewing in the last few weeks.......a whole pile of random hexie units completed

and about 20 more sewn into strip sets ready to go (yes, it's organised!).

I cut more hexies as I needed some for the rainbow hexie, one large section complete now......

 More strips ready to go.... (excuse the bare feet!)

The bins were refilled, much cutting (I did a fabric swap with a Bookcrosser friend): this is the random bin...........

Hundreds more sewn up already

This weekend I looked at all the offcuts from the hexie cutting and decided as they were all the same size they should be sewn into strips NOW for the next crumb quilt-it took about 7 hours but at least it's manageable this way, crumbs from one cutting project are the same size-last time I had a giant unmanageable bin of mixed sizes.  I like the fact that every piece is angled.

I had cut more strips for the new leader-ender project, Bonnie's Perkiomen Daydreams; I sewed these into pairs today, that took a couple of hours.  A few weeks of pressing and cutting ahead into 1 1/2" pair units. 

I tried a few out to see how bulky the seams would be on 1" finished patches-seams OK!

I have almost finished the bow ties!  There will be about 1200. This was supposed to be a leader-ender project but it didn't work out that way.  Last few pairs waiting to go......

I sewed the badly cut hexies into units of the right size, these will go into the random hexie bin.  It's going to be fun finding these in the finished quilt. I tried for contrast.

I am all nine-patched out!  I think I have enough for a double with some sashing now; I haven't decided on the setting yet.  I have hundreds more 2" squares cut, its hardly touched the surface. 

All the black and white nine patches are complete for 'Morphie'.  I need to decide on the next block pattern and cut more black and whites, triangles this time.   No planning, this is a decide as I go project.

As this little project will NEVER get done at home, I have taken the 1/2" diamonds to work to do in my lunch break. All the chaps I work with have asked with varying levels of puzzlement, 'What....': they haven't seen paper piecing before.  When I explain it will take about 10 years and need 14,000 pieces they just shake their heads!

This weeks read
Chosen from Mount 'To Be Read' because of 'A Good Read' on Radio 4 this week.