Thursday, 31 October 2013

Bloggers Quilt Festival (and a finish) [Baby Paws]

Just in the nick of time I have completed the baby quilt I wanted to enter into the fabulous Bloggers Quilt Festival!

I've called this quilt "Baby Paws" (very imaginative). It came out of a request from my cousin, who asked me to make a quilt for a freind of hers who was expecting a baby. The nursery theme was green with stencilled paw prints. It didn't take a great leap to get to the design I picked!

The greens are a total mixture from my stash: Tula Pink; Art Gallery; Kona solids; Pearl Bracelets; Sketch; Basic Grey; Architextures; Backyard Baby and many others. The cream I've used for the paws, the backing and the binding is Kona Bone.

I pieced the squares (all 4" finished), then basted and quilted the cross hatch using my walking foot and a hera marker (the first time I've used one and I love it).

I then prepared the paws - I used a new tool called Appliquick which is a pair of metal rods which enable you to neatly turn over the edges onto an interfacing using fabric glue. I then appliqued them onto the quilt sandwich using a straight stitch on my machine. This meant that the paw prints show through to the back as quilting. I almost love the back more than the front!

I've used a DMC perle thread to embroidery my blog name on the back.

The finished quilt is 24" x 36". All of the fabrics are cotton, the batting is cotton bamboo blend and the thread is Aurifil.

Thanks for stopping by and taking a closer look at my entry in the festival. You can find my other entry (in the wall hanging category) here.

And this was a finish on my finish-along list for the fourth quarter, so come January I'll be linking up with Leanne!
she can quilt

Monday, 28 October 2013

Bloggers Quilt Festival [Rhubarb and Custard]

I really enjoy this time of year - so many pretty quilts to look at and so much inspiration. This is my fifth Bloggers Quilt Festival and this time I knew exactly which quilt I wanted to enter.

If you pop by my blog occasionally, you will have seen this quilt a few times recently as its a recent finish, but definitely not a recent start!

This quilt is special for a number of reasons. It was one of the first quilts I ever started. It was a class at a quilt shop - we spent the whole class cutting the fabric and then were sent away to make a QAYG quilt with just an A4 sheet of instructions. Even to this day I don't know how we were supposed to assemble the quilt as the original design, unless we cut narrow strips of wadding and spent hours fiddling on.

Given the start, this was a project which got picked up every six months and I did a little bit more, but with no way of finishing the quilt I was never ver inspired. On the plus side, I absolutely love the fabrics and still do. They are from Benartex in the most part, with a few others thrown in to tone down the fabulous vivid patterns.

Then at the start of the year I decided to take part in the Skill Builder BOM and there was a link to a Leah Day video on how to join QAYG blocks. And I suddenly knew how to finish this quilt.

Fast-forward to September and I picked it up again as part of the six-month-cycle. I was working on it the day we discovered we were expecting a little girl in February next year and that was the final push I needed. This quilt will hang in her nursery.

So - it's special because it will be for my little girl. It was also the first time I had attempted a large number of the techniques - reverse applique, hand quilting, QAYG.... and although it isn't perfect, I can see the learning curve I went on - that's what this wonderful quilting journey is about, isn't it?

The quilt is approximately 30" x 41"
The patterned fabrics are all from Benartex Sweethearts range (I think). I added in some calmer fabrics as well, but I have no idea what they are. I don't know what the brown sashing is either.
Techniques: Reverse applique, quilt-as-you-go, hand sashing techniques, hand quilting.
Started: Summer 2010. Finished: September 2013.

Thank you so much for stopping by!

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

WIP Wednesday [Medallion - help needed]

This is my Medallion quilt.

Last Friday we basted it - somewhat unsuccessfully to start with - I love my husband, but basting isn't his thing!
And tonight I have started quilting. I've stitched about 1/8" inside the red borders on each side.

bad lighting, but you can see the quilting
I also plan to do some hand quilting - some kind of motif in the corner stones and in the centre.

So my question is, do you think it needs more than that, and if so, what? I am out of ideas....

Linking up with WIP Wednesday.

Saturday, 12 October 2013

Finish Along Q4 - Leanne said go big!

I'm really starting to get my energy back now. I wouldn't say I'm having a blooming second trimester, but it's definitely better than the first! So although I didn't get many finishes last quarter, that totally hasn't put me off of compiling a monster list of finishes for Q4 - some of these may look very familiar... Please don't laugh! I'm calling it being focused but with choice!

Hexagon Table Runner
This has been on the list for a while, but I feel like I've made really good progress recently. I've started quilting - straight lines, by hand in perle thread. I think I'm about a quarter of the way through. Then it just needs to be bound.

Baby Quilt 1: Blue and white
So many people I know are expecting babies at the moment. This is a quilt for my manager. She knows she's expecting a boy so I get to do a quilt in boy colours. You can more information about the quilt in this blog post. I need to baste this, quilt this and bind this by mid-November when her maternity leave starts.

Baby Quilt 2: Indian Summer
This one has been on the list before. And this is a baby quilt for my other manager. His wife is expecting in December. This is just a quilt top at the moment, and I haven't decided how best to quilt it yet.

Baby Quilt 3: Baby Paws
I don't know the recipient of this quilt - it's going to a friend of my cousin's - this needs to be finished fairly soon as I think baby is due mid-November. The paws aren't attached yet so I want to quilt a cross hatch on the green background then machine applique the paws and bind.

Baby Quilt 4: The Very Hungry Caterpillar
This is a quilt for the person who was my manager before she went on her maternity leave (something is going on in our office....) Euan was born 6 weeks ago, and I only just started this quilt, so I need to get on with it. So far all I've done is the cutting - but it was fussy cutting so took longer than I expected. Hopefully the piecing will be quite quick.

Baby Quilt 5: One for me!
And yes - I am also pregnant! So my Baby needs the nicest of the baby quilts. I'm using the Lucky Stars blocks from Don't Call me Betsy and adding a few extra blocks, set on point. I have 8 blocks still to make. The deadline is mid-February or whenever I totally run out of energy!

Medallion Quilt
We basted this quilt top last night. By we I mean my husband and I. It wasn't a roaring success.... but it is now basted. I just need to decide on how to quilt it.

Aspen Frost
This is a beautiful quilt and I've picked some of the Downton Abbey fabrics to make it as a gift for a relative. I haven't started piecing yet but I have spent about 5 hours cutting all the fabric. I'm hoping with a bit of chain piecing this will look like a quilt quite soon.

City Sampler
I am really enjoying making these blocks. I have made 60 blocks and have the fabric cut for most of the rest. They are so quick to piece that I could run these up in a few days. But then comes the sashing (not my favourite job) and to decide on quilting - I love the quilting in the book but will have to tone it down to my abilities and my regular sewing machine. I also need to chose a backing. I'm really keen to get this finished before baby, otherwise it may sit for a long time before getting finished.

Joy Jelly Roll
This was last year's Christmas Quilt. It would be lovely to finish it before this Christmas. I managed to buy some more fabric from the range in the sales in January so I have a backing to piece too. And I think I'm going to use wool wadding for the first time...

Batik Wall Hanging
This is a present for my Mum - she knows about it! It has sat unloved for a long time, just because I needed to put some time aside to make the bias tape. Until the summer when I gave in and bought ready made bias tape - now it just needs lots of hand applique followed by lots of hand quilting.

Chances are this won't get finished. But I may find I want to do this type of accurate piecing. I have two of sixteen blocks completed and I still love these fabrics.

Jennie's Threads BOM
I'm feeling a little guilty about this project. I haven't been able to post the last few months yet and I'm hoping to catch up and get this finished. I have 7 of the 12 month blocks made, the remaining 5 designed - next job this evening is preparing the embroidery.

Sisters BOM
I would love to get this finished. But it's unlikely. I did the January and February blocks. Since then I have been thinking about the practicalities of a large amount of white negative space in a house with two dogs, my husband, and soon a small child....

Skill Builder BOM
This BOM is proceeding slowly, but I am learning huge amount from it. At the start of the year I really wanted to get the BOMs I committed to finished by the end of the year, so this is going on the list, though with a little less optimism than some of the other projects. There are twenty QAYG blocks in total. I have pieced 6, a further two are well on the way to being finished, but only two are quilted.

Mystery project
My lips are sealed - but it is started.

Neon Stained
Back again. Maybe I just need to get this one quilted and move on, rather than the intricate quilting I had planned.

Three Peaks
On a bit of a hand sewing kick, I've bought some grey perle cotton to hand quilt this and it could be a quilt we can use with  baby....

Double Wedding Ring Quilt
I love love love this project - the fabrics are beautiful and the colours are perfect for our bedroom. But curves and Y-Seams do not make for a quick project. And I think I am going to want to do something special with the quilting. I would like to make progress on this quilt, but I am really not sure I will get it finished.

Grey and Red Ferris Wheel
I started this project on my last trip to Budapest in March and I haven't touched it since. But I'm enjoying hand work at the moment, so this may move forward - as soon as I can the rest of it - it was in two bags and I have located one bag.

20 projects - I am officially a WIP addict and a mad woman. I will be extremely happy with 10 finishes!

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

WIP Wednesday [Batik and bias]

I'm not sure I've shared this project before... it's for my Mum.

Lots of batiks, all sewn together and then black bias strips over every seam. Sounds straight forward doesn't it. I'm cheating a little with pre-made bias, but I still need to be sewing down each side of each strip, and then I'll be hand quilting. It measures just 23" x 15" - the smallest pieces are just an inch finished.

I think I'll be spending a while looking at these pretty colours over the next few months. Did I mention that I started this nearly two years ago?

Linking up with WIP Wednesday WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

City Sampler [58, 59, 60]

I love these little blocks!

Block 58: Baby Quilts - because I seem to be making rather a lot of baby quilts recently!

The fabrics are Kona Sprout, Kona Candy Green, Indian Summer from Art Gallery and Kona Cornflower.

Block 59: Archie and Charlie - for my beautiful doggies (little monsters)!

The fabrics are Kona Peacock and So Stitchy

And block 60: The Danube: I've spent a while this year in a hotel with gorgeous views over the Danube and I lived in Vienna (also on the Danube) for several months back in 2006.

The fabrics are Painters Canvas and Indian Summer by Art Gallery.

Linking up with Sara at Sew Sweetness

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Baby quilts and other things

Everyone is having babies! And that means a lot of baby quilts. This blue one was pieced a few weeks ago, but I only got round to adding the borders today. It is 100% borrowed from Sharon! Thanks, Sharon, for the great tutorial!

The blues are randomly picked from my stash and I have backing (Art Gallery) and batting - but forgot to pick up some binding.

This one is for my cousin - she is gifting the quilt not having a baby. The brief was green and animal paw prints. So I pulled greens from my stash and then picked up Kona Bone for the paws. I'm also using Kona Bone for the backing and binding. But I forgot to pick up wadding..... The paw prints are just sitting on the quilt top at the moment - I want to quilt the green in a cross hatch all over and then applique the paws on top.

Yesterday I made a bag. It was a class at my LQS and I finished (except for hand stitching the gap in the lining closed) in the class - success. Stitched it up at home yesterday evening and I have a finish. The fabrics are all linen blends and with the wadding as well my machine was not happy with the bottom corners.... but I'm really pleased with the finish.

And I have a Dear Jane block I haven't shown you - I've been playing with my appliquick rods again!

And I've started quilting my hexie table runner....

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Medallion Quilt

I have a finished quilt top to share! The medallion quilt I started last weekend now has all its numerous borders!

The final border was a bit of a challenge but with a slight change to the pattern it went together ok.

The fabrics are a total mixture picked by my Godmother, and when this is finished it will be a gift for her. I bought the batting and backing (above) today so hopefully that will be soon! I just need my husband to come back from a stag weekend and help me baste!

Friday, 4 October 2013

Finish Along [Quarter 4]

My third quarter goals were a little ambitious, weren't they? Especially given how well I seem to be coping with pregnancy... From the original list of 9 projects I have two finishes.

The second finish of the quarter is the one I shared with you earlier this week - my Rhubarb and Custard Quilt. This was a WIP for over three years, so I'm thrilled that I can finally call this one finished and get ready to hang it in the nursery!

The other finish is one that I totally forgot to blog about! Remember these hexagons?

They became these three mini quilts which were my contribution for the sample swap at the Fat Quarterly Retreat.

That leaves quite a few projects which I didn't get finished.... the Three Peaks quilt, my Neon Stained quilt, the double wedding ring quilt, my own BOM quilt and the Indian Summer baby quilt are all untouched. Exactly as they were back at the start of July.

My hexagon table runner has progressed - I've pieced the back and basted it. I want to hand quilt it but I'm still not sure quite how.

I have made another Fireworks block

My Vignette quilt has moved forward - I've been piecing more blocks and done a small amount of embroidery.

And the BOMs have seen a mixed result: I'm totally up to date with the Lucky Stars BOM, I've gradually been hand sewing the EPP blocks for the Skill Builder BOM, but I haven't touched the Sisters BOM...

I'm up to date with the City Sampler QAL and I've done a few more blocks from my Dear Jane quilt.

Pop back next week and see just how ambitious my Q4 list is :)

Linking up with Leanne for my hexie mini quilts finish.
she can quilt