Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Bloggers Quilt Festival - More is More

I am entering a second quilt in the Blogger's Quilt Festival - it's a finish of earlier this year so apologies to those who have already read about it ad nauseam before.    I'm putting this one in the Large Quilts category, where it is in the company of some amazing quilts.

It was made for a child living in a children's home in Mexico City, which I learned about on Alison's blog Little Island Quilting - you can read more about her "Soy Amado/a ("I am loved") project here.  This explains the embroidered message bottom right, which was done in variegated thread using a tight wide zig-zag on my sewing machine.

I thought about making something unisex, but then I decided that I would go all-out girly for someone who should have one of her own.  I didn't think I was a "pink" person but I must have been in denial as somehow a fair amount of it seemed to have crept into my stash.  I used all of it in this quilt, it was quite liberating!

The quilting is simple - straight lines a quarter inch from the seams in the squares, and stars in the white sashing.

The over-the-top pinkness and bright chartreuse green binding are why this quilt ended up being called More is More.

If the truth be told I was quite sorry to see it go off to its new home, but I hope it makes someone happy!

Thank you for visiting!

You can see my other entry in the Festival here.

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Square Peg

I'm linking up this post to the Bloggers Quilt Festival.  Thank you to Amy for hosting such a fantastic event - it's so interesting seeing the diversity of quilts!

If you are visiting from the festival welcome to my blog - please have a poke around:-)   This is my entry to the Small Quilt Category:  

Square Peg

I started this quilt as a prototype for another idea, but it took on a life of its own.

The central pattern is made using a background of low-volume prints along with a handful of Oakshott shot cottons in pale neutrals. The appliqued circles and blue square are all Oakshott.  The square is in the only cool colour, but I chose some purples to suggest the influence of the square peg on the circles around it!

The borders are yarn-dyed essex linen and the binding is made from scraps of the same shot cottons in varying widths, with one tiny piece of blue along the bottom to represent the square.

I had finished and quilted the central panel before I decided to add the borders, which meant sewing on the batting and essex linen, and then carefully lining up the matchstitch quilting.  Way to make life difficult:-)

I love the texture of this lichen-covered wall just round the corner from my house.

My eldest daughter helped me fix the quilt to the wall using the sophisticated method of rolled up wodges of duck tape, and until it blew off we took pictures of it while trying to ignore the fact that someone was apparently in the process of being arrested further along the road.  It's all excitement here.

I'm so pleased with the way this one turned out and hope you like it too.  Thank you for visiting!

Quilt details:

Size: 25 inches x 25 inches
Materials: Yarn-dyed essex linen, and Oakshott shot cottons
Quilting: Matchstick in white Gutermann 50 weight
Binding: half-inch single, in essex linen and Oakshott scraps

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Slow Blog Linky

Leaving you with a picture of a work in progress because I'm just off taking a blogging break.  Back soon.

While I'm off being a Slow Blogger, this month's Linky Party is being hosted by the lovely Collette.  Hope to see you there on the 15th:-)

Thursday, 2 October 2014

Freehand NY Beauty

Still fidgeting with the New York beauty. I used a patterned print to bind it all the way round, which is new for me.  I did try a neutral binding but it looked peelly-wally.  I'm not too sure about this one either.  I thought it picked up the colours, but maybe red would be better.  Can I be bothered?  

I will try to take a better picture once I'm sure it's finished, one way or the other.  Of course this is what minis are for.

 He's also lying on a WIP, but he's 17, I don't mind.

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

The Stitch Gathering

Hats off to Jo Avery for organising a really fantastic event - it was great.   

The day started with registration where we picked up our goody bag - the sponsors had been amazingly generous.

There were Aurifil threads, Nairns biscuits (actually more - I have no idea where the others went, cough), a Frixion pen from  PilotCoats needles and thread, lovely fabric and a panel from DashwoodLove patchwork and quilting mag, embroidery floss from DMC,  Liberty fabric from Very Berry, scissors from Groves and Banks , a Liberty tote bag and fabric, yet more lovely fabric from Blend and Robert Kaufman, and DMC perle cotton and beads from Mybearpaw.  My word.

This was followed with the hunt for your secret name tag swap partner - here is the one I handed over to Agnes once I had finally tracked her down.  

The butterfly is made of Oakshott, and the veins on the wings are tightly zigzag stitched. I had a head-poppingly difficult time making it but it got there in the end.

I received this one from Norma who was very bashful about it but I love it especially the tiny flower.

Then we went into our first class - mine was improv New York Beauty with Jo.  I kept finding myself anally trying to get the wonkiness just right if you know what I mean, rather than just go with the flow, but it was a lot of fun.

There was time during the lunch break to vote for your favourite embellished Stitch Gathering ticket bag before giving your own to your secret partner.  You can see the variety of beautiful bags here - each person came up with something so different and they were all amazing.  You've already seen the one I made - here is the beauty I received from Jane - it's so pretty and grown up.

There was also a lucky dip, show and tell, and a raffle for the quilt made from last year's fabric tickets - and a lovely buffet too!

In the afternoon there was some very intense sewing.  I took the tote bag class with the brilliant Katy Littlest Thistle Cameron.   The bag needed a patchwork panel for the front pocket so I just whipped this one up (haha) the day before in case the New York Beauty wasn't ready.  A massive gin and tonic was required when it was done.

We picked up a lot of really useful tips, including one for making neat boxed corners, how to put in magnetic fasteners and a method for inserting the zip for an interior pocket.

I didn't manage to finish the bag at the class, but the sprogs and I had a pyjama day yesterday because they were having a holiday Monday and I am still getting over the back-to-school cold they infected me with last week.  They made pompoms while I finished it off, only nipping out to the shops at teatime so we didn't starve.  Bag photography is definitely not my forte so you will have to take my word for it that it is rather nice, if I say so myself!

This post has so many superlatives it is beginning to remind me of Brilliant Kid on the Fast Show, but really it was a brilliant day. Thank you to Katy, Jo and all her helpers.

Monday, 15 September 2014

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Lucky, lucky, lucky

Two really lucky things happened this month - one was having my laptop slide off the dining table onto the floor with a tremendously loud bang without any apparent damage (wipes sweat off forehead) and the other was winning this amazing bundle of new kona colours from Robert Kaufman.  They come from Judith of Needles and Lemons whose lovely blog was one of the first I ever read.   They are really beautiful fabrics and pretty much quadrupled my meagre supply of solids - I actually had to go and get a drawer from Ikea.  I am so grateful and promise to try to make good use of them. 

PS, do you think Birds and Bees is a good name for a beer?:-)
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