Wednesday, 28 August 2013

WIP Wednesday [addicted]

I know two things for certain: these little blocks are addictive and it is impossible to make just one block.... though perhaps 19 blocks is a bit of overkill.

I've been working on the City Sampler again. I see no point in making a mess with all my fabric to pick combinations for just three blocks, so I picked fabrics for nineteen. There's no point picking fabric if you don't cut it. So I cut all the pieces for nineteen blocks. And then I pieced them. It just happened.....

I had left a few blocks which I went back and did this time. I'm not wild about the first one....

Block 29: Hand Sewing - because I should be doing more hand sewing and fewer City Sampler blocks...

The fabrics are Color Me Retro and Pure Elements (Fresh Water) both from Art Gallery, Blythe from Robert Kaufmann and Kona Cyan.

Block 34: Esplanade - the seafront at Sidmouth.

The fabrics are a batik from Summer Island Batiks (Moda), Kona Brit Peri. and Pearl Bracelets.

Block 35: still unnamed.... I'm working on it

The fabrics are Color Me Retro from Art Gallery (2 different fabrics) and Pearl Bracelets.

Block 40: Four great concerts: There were four fantastic evening concerts this year at Sidmouth: Le Vent du Nord from Canada, Show of Hands from Devon, Floor from Ireland and Capercailie from Scotland.

The fabrics are a black batik left over from my Farmer's Wife quilt, the red I used to sash my first stitchery quilt, Kona Poppy and Durham from Lecien.

Block 41: Linda. A block for my Mother-in-Law - always heading in lots of directions - church, school, coffee, dog sitting.... baby sitting (more next year!).

The fabrics are Chevrons from Riley Blake, Pearl Bracelets and a random fabric from my stash.

Block 42: John. Because we should have been celebrating his 60th birthday last weekend.

The fabrics are Luxe in Bloom and Oval Elements both from Art Gallery, and a batik.

Block 43: Road to Jerusalem. My parents are on holiday in Pembrokeshire this week. It's my favourite place in the world and I am not there. You'll find quite  few of the blocks I've made in this batch are named after some of my favourite places in this part of the world. On the cliff above Porthgain in Northern Pembrokeshire are two deserted quarried that were called Jerusalem and Caersalem. The road to the quarried was known locally as the The Road to Jerusalem.

The fabrics are some of my favourites: a random green solid, Urbans Chiks and Reminisce from Art Gallery.

Block 44: Art Gallery: because I seem very addicted to their beautiful fabrics!

The fabrics are a solid green and possible my favourite new fabric from Reminisce (Art Gallery).

Block 45: Great Langdale: As well as Pembrokeshire, I love the Lake District, particularly this beautiful valley.

The fabrics are Kona brown, Peace on Earth by Three Sisters, Bohemian Soul from Art Gallery and a random green swirly fabric.

Block 46: For my Dad. In the absence of tasteful steam engine prints I plumped for one of his other hobbies - Dad is a brilliant musician and plays melodeon for ceilidhs and morris.

The fabrics are Textures from Art Gallery and Aspen Frost from Moda.

Block 47: Nine Castles: For the nine castles I love in Pembrokeshire and neighbouring Carmarthenshire: Pembroke Castle (the biggest and best); Manorbier Castle (fabulous beach views); St. Davids Bishops Palace, Llansteffan Castle, Llaugharne Castle (just up the road from where Dylan Thomas lived), Kidwelly Castle, Tenby Castle, and Carew Castle (the prettiest) and Cilgerran Castle (the most dramatic above the River Teifi).

The fabrics are Paradise from Art Gallery and Topography from Architextures.

Block 48: Anchor Gardens: another venue at Sidmouth where the lunchtime Ceilidhs are held.

The fabrics are a random music fabric, Flying Free from Anthology, a random olive solid and a random light green solid.

Block 49: Islands: Again referencing holidays in Pembrokeshire: Ramsey Island off of the coast near St. Davids, Skomer Island, just further to the south, and Caldey Island, a monastic Island of the coast at Tenby. This is possibly my favourite block from this batch.

The fabrics are Saltwater by Tula Pink and Mama said Sew from Sweetwater.

Block 50: Carew Castle; because it reminds me of the fabulous Elizabethan windows that look out over the millpond.

The fabrics are Sketch, Pearl Bracelets and Architextures.

Block 51: Nottingham Swing: a ceilidh dance and our first dance when we were married.

I have no idea what the fabrics are in this block but the yellow was left over from Mum's tablecloth and the orange was used on my Farmer's Wife quilt.

Block 52: Well Padded: I had an appointment with the consultant today because of my somewhat higher than average BMI.... he referred to me as being "well padded".... patronising *****

The fabrics are Urban Chiks and Nature Elements.

Block 53: Apple Pies: Aunty Lil made the best Apple Pies and we always had them when we visited Grandad.

The fabrics are Funky Fruit from Makower, Kona Butter and Aspen Frost.

Block 54: Seagulls Feet. A reminder of when you would spend more time watching seagulls feet on the marquee roof at Sidmouth than the artists on stage. It was best just after it had rained and you spotted on slip and then it was more about seagulls bottoms than seagulls feet.

The fabrics are a random batik, a random peach and Kona Leaf.

And finally Block 55: currently nameless....

And I have no idea what the fabrics are....

Are you still there - have you made it. Lots of pictures. I'm looking out for an opportunity to lay them all out together....

..... Linking up with WIP Wednesday!

Monday, 26 August 2013

Bits and pieces and new projects....

Yesterday I should have been in Edinburgh for the Stitch Gathering. But I wasn't. When the baby is a teenager I am sure I will get my own back and say that they can't go out and do something they want to do either.... When I woke up feeling great on Saturday I started to regret cancelling, but yesterday morning didn't go quite as well, so my decision was the right one.

To make up for my disappointment, Linda and I spent Saturday at our Local Quilt Shop. Because I a, in desperate need of new projects (not) we started a new one. We both signed up for the Amish Twist II block of the month back in May and finally made a start. There was a lot of cutting and not much sewing, so I don't have anything to show for it yet....

...and if that wasn't enough I also gave in to temptation and bought Block 1 of the Best Friends Froever block of the month from Rosalie Quinlan. This will be a long term project - partly because it could take me that long to pick which fabrics I want to use.

But I do have some things to share: my second Fireworks block. The fabrics are Rock and Romance from Art Gallery and the pattern is from Camille Roskelly - it has a lot in common with Swoon - big blocks, precision piecing, and really pretty. Only 14 more blocks to make.

Partly by accident I also made a few more Dear Jane blocks. I hadn't intended to but I was putting the book away and flicked through and my eyes fell on block D10 Battlefield and I knew exactly how to rotary cut it, so I did. What I didn't realise was quite how small some of the pieces would be.

But you can't just make one block so I flicked through looking for a straightforward second block and found E8 Mama's Maze, and while I was cutting for that I glanced at E7 Bread Basket, which I've looked at before, and suddenly realized how to rotary cut that one too. So I have three new blocks.
Mama's Maze
Bread Basket

I have a fair bit of catching up to do on my Bee blocks at the moment. I made a start yesterday with the August blocks for Stash Bee. I really like these blocks, but my stash let me down - there is quite a difference between red and white, and red and cream, so I hope these are ok.

And then I foolishly picked up the City Sampler book and decided to pick fabrics for the next three blocks. T\he problem is that I make such a mess of my fabric looking through for the perfect combinations that it seemed silly to only pick for three, so I picked the fabrics through to block number 55.

Then I cut the fabrics. And I might just start sewing them this afternoon!

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

WIP Wednesday [a reason]

I have two linked WIPs to share with you today.

I've turned my machine back on and once I'd eased myself in with some more City Sampler blocks I made so many I split them into two posts here and here) I picked up the Lucky Stars blocks again and made August.
I just love the music fabric - it's from Aspen Frost. And the green is my kind of green.... that one's a brand new Art Gallery!

And the reason? Well, these blocks are going to be a baby quilt. For me. Yep. Me! Here's my second WIP! Due 15th February!

Linking up with WIP Wednesday!

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

...and Part Two

Ready for more?

Block 21 (17.08.2013): Motherhood - this one is inspired by our news - I stitched it up at 14 weeks.

The fabrics are Pure Elements in Lipgloss and Dress Up from Northcott.

Block 22 (17.08.2013): 6 Brothers. My Grandad was the eldest of 6 brothers. He passed away over 5 years ago. Uncle Walt, the last surviving brother passed away at the end of July. His wife, Aunty Freda, passed away just a few weeks later and as they had shared everything together in life, they had a joint funeral.

The fabrics are Kona Honeydew and Tula Pink.

Block 23 (17.08.2013): Elizabeth Harkness. Named after one of the rose bushes in my new garden - I have four in total, all different colours, all with beautiful scents!

The fabrics are Kona Rich Red, Pure Elements Quartz Pink and Makower Funky Fruit.

Block 24 (17.08.2013): Rocky Island: Just down the coast from where I live is a small village called Seaton Sluice. If we were in somewhere like Cornwall it be a tourist haven, but up here, it's just a quiet little finishing harbour. And right on the edge of the harbour is a lovely little pub near Rocky Island. And from Rocky Island, separated from the mainland by the sluice which was hand cut to let bigger ships into the port, there a beautiful view back up the coast.

The fabrics are Kona Midnight, Faith, Words and Philosophy from Stof and a spotty fabric from Stof.

Block 25 (18.08.2013): Wimbledon: I'd meant to name an earlier block to commerorate our British winner, but it wasn't until I got to this one that it felt right.

The fabrics are Kona Kelly, Konna Green Tea and the Hearts print is from Benartex.

Block 26 (18.08.2013): Jacob's Ladder. Jacob's Ladder is name of the beach at Sidmouth. It's been years since I've been there as it is just round a small headland from the rest of the town, but this year we did visit (and we had a superb cream tea.....)

The fabrics are Kona Berry, a solid pink from Marcus Fabrics, the leaves are from Blythe by Robert Kaufmann, and the cross hatch is Dress Up from Northcott.

Block 27 (18.08.2013): Uncle Terry: I know it seems odd to name a block so flowery after an Uncle, but the day I pieced this block was his birthday and he loves Bluebell woods in the spring. The colours in this block make me think of bluebells.

The fabrics are a Moda Bella solid and Bliss Bouquet from Amy Butler.

Block 28 (18.08.2013): Family. The name of this block was inspired by its resemblance to the first block in this post - the idea that a baby is surrounded by the love of family. And I found a perfect text print to fussy cut!

The fabrics are Kona Dark Red, Saltwater from Tula Pink and the text is Reunion by Sweetwater.

Block 30 (18.08.2013): Ashes. We've won them again!

Fabrics are a solid green from my stash, a light green from my stash and Art Gallery Modernology.

Block 31 (18.08.2013). At the moment this is another block without a name....

The fabrics are Lace Elements from Art Gallery, Funky Fruit from Makower, Cherry Christmas from Aneela Hoey and a random solid.

Block 32 (18.08.2013) still on the look out for name inspiration.....

The fabrics are Kona Melon, Kona Mango, Kona Banana and Sweethearts from Benartex. Maybe I should call this the fruit block. I've realised that in my stash I have very few fussy-cut-able prints, and even fewer that I actually like, so I'm going to use blocks like this to show case some of my larger print fabrics.

Block 33 (18.08.2013) Stonehenge. Every year on the way down to Sidmouth we take the A303 past Stonehenge and it's always stunning. It means the end of motorway driving and the start of the holiday!

The fabrics are a turquoise from Flirt for Moday, Kona Periwinkle and possibly an Amy Butler fabric.

Block 36 (18.08.2013) The Ham: The Ham is the name of the playing fields to the east of the centre of Sidmouth, approximately 10 yards from the house we stayed in and the main concert venue for the folk festival!

The fabrics are a random dark blue solid, and both of the half squares are from the same fabric from Hofmann California

Block 37 (18.08.2013) Connaught Gardens - remember I mentioned a wonderful cream tea - we sat and ate it above Jacob's Ladder in Connaught Gardens.

The fabrics are Kona Burgundy, Dreaming in French from Art Gallery and Architextures.

Block 38 (18.08.2013) South Beach - the beach just a ten minute walk from where we live.

The fabrics are a random marbled blue and Textures from Art Gallery.

and Block 39 (18.08.2013) another unnamed block and not my favourite.....

The fabrics are Floral Elements from Art Gallery, Kona Red and a pink from Marcus. I don't know the name of the apple fabric.

That's it for now - there are some blocks missing - I just don't have quite the right fabrics at the moment!

Monday, 19 August 2013

A Ginormous City Sampler Catch Up [Part 1]

** Warning - lots of pictures**

It turns out that even though I made a fair few blocks back before I switched my machine off, I never blogged about them. I was planning on putting those blocks, along with the ones I made last weekend all in one post. But you may not survive till the end.... so I'll blog here until I want to go to bed and then blog a few more tomorrow....

Block 10 (07.07.2013): Princess Royal. No - not a connection to the royal birth, but th name of a Morris Dance - it's my favourite one that Letchworth Morris Men dance and the one I find my self humming under my breath at work. I went back home at the end of June and went out with the morris and made sure they did this dance.

The fabrics are Pure Elements in Parisian Blue and Textures.

Block 11 (07.07.2013): Heatwave. Unfortunately the high temperatures meant a high pollen count and I couldn't take any hay-fever medicine......

The yellow fabric is the batik I used as the border for my Farmer's Wife quilt, and the Orange is Oval Elements from Art Gallery.

Block 12 (07.07.2013): Michael. This one is for my husband. I'm planning on doing a block  for each family member and this one was just "right".

It also uses some of my favourite fabrics: Painters Canvas in a beautiful grassy green and a print from Paradise from Art Gallery (one of my all time favourite prints)

Block 13 (07.07.2013): Finish Along. I really enjoy taking part in the Finish Along and it has been really successful for me - this commemorates winning the top prize and a large number of finishes at the end of quarter 2.

The fabrics are Pure Elements (I think it's Cozumel Blue), Oval Elements and Bazaar Style, all from Art Gallery.

Block 14 (07.07.2013): Mum. For my Mum in her favourite colours. Hoping I'll be as good a Mum as she is.

The fabrics are Pure Elements in Lemonade, Color Me Retro both from Art Gallery, and Architextures.

Block 15 (07.07.2013): Driver and Navigator: This one's for Michael and me. Just before I discovered I was pregnant, but whilst pregnant.... we took part in a classic car rally together. We were driving that ultimate classic - an S Reg Corsa! We did pretty well and we are still married! He drove, I navigated.

The fabrics are Pure Elements in Emerald and Carnaby Street (both Art Gallery).

Block 16 (07.07.2013): Summer Rain - always when it's most inconvenient!

Pure Elements Fresh Water, Kona Cyan, the Green Dot is from Nana's Garden from Red Rooster and a Hoffman print from the Born to be Wild range which I love and have had for a few years but never had the opportunity to use!

Block 17 (07.07.2013): Cake Stall - we made over £370 on the cake stall - success! The fabrics make me think of bunting, which makes me think of fetes, which is inevitable the cake stall!

The fabrics are a pink spot from Tilda and Kona Pomegranate.

Block 18 (07.07.2013): Steph. This one is for my sister-in-law Steph, because it uses one of the fabrics I made her quilt in - the grey-y looking one that isn't really grey.

So the fabrics are a random batik, Nature Elements from Art Gallery and Kona Dark Violet and Kona Lavendar.

Block 19 (07.07.2013): I'd run out of names by this point, but I'm sure inspiration will strike eventually

The fabrics are Kona Wine and Nature Elements from Art Gallery.

...and finally Block 20 (07.07.2013): Turf. Because the day I stitched this block up the garden started to look like a garden again!

The fabrics are a random solid which is fairly close to Kona Lime and Color Me Retro from Art Gallery.

I have had to change some of my little rules: I had wanted not to repeat a fabric, but I think that will be very hard, especially with the solids, so I've changed the rule to not repeating the same combination of fabrics! And I'm still sticking with the plan of not using fabrics from the same range in the same block (Art Gallery plus Pure Elements doesn't count!). And it's fairly obvious that my love affair with Art Gallery continues!

There'll be more blocks tomorrow....