Saturday 27 September 2014

New Craftsy Pattern

I finally got around to writing up the pattern for the Little Chicken Quilt

This has been one of the most enjoyable quilts to construct and started as a challenge to use up some of the ever increasing scraps that were accumulating from other projects. It can be used as a way to make room for new fabric and having some fun with creating that random scrappy look while at the same time creating a charming little quilt. The quilt top is made up of 3in squares with plain sashing strips and two borders to finish it all off and measures 38 1/2in x 44 1/2in (97.8cm x 113cm). Very simple and fast to construct.

If you are interested in making this quilt head over to my pattern store at Craftsy.


Monday 22 September 2014

WIP: Plus Quilt top

Some progress...finally got the basting done. Always a major job as I am doing it on the floor which is very uncomfortable to say the least.

Now onto the favourite part! I am thinking of an allover design, maybe something swirly or maybe an allover flower design. Not sure yet, too many choices

Linking up to Anything Goes Linky Party at Stitch by Stitch


Monday 15 September 2014

Playing with Thread

I have come to a bit of a standstill on my projects. No particular reason other that life is a bit busy at the moment. My hexagon quilt is still waiting for an appropriate backing piece and I am undecided on a quilting pattern for my Plus quilt...

Why work on my WIPs though when I can do something completely different? Have been FMQ a little bit here and there, trying new designs and in general giving my machine a bit of a workout. Fun, fun, fun...

For some years now I have been thinking about stitching up some very old designs...from 1885 to be precise. I once found this book in the bargin bin in one of the local bookshops...Decorative Flower and Leaf Designs...a republication of some 124 illustrations from Blätter und Blumen für Flächen- Decoration: Eine Vorlagensammlung für Zeichen, Webe, und gewerbliche Fortbildungsschulen, Fabrikanten und Masterzeichner, published by E. Twietmeyer, Leipzig, 1885. For a long time I struggled to work out which program to use to work with these images on the computer...finally worked it out and was able to print out one of them at 10 x 16 inches.

As you can see, still have a lot of work to do on this. I think this sample is too small which makes it somewhat too frilly. I probably need to simplify this a bit and enlarge it, maybe do some trapunto to make it pop a bit better. But can you see the potential?
I got quite excited about this...would be lovely to do a Wholecloth with just a few of these designs to showcase their beauty. But, and there always is a but...this requires a whole lot of more work.Next trial will be on black fabric, I reckon...this was a bugger to photograph!


Friday 12 September 2014

Aurifil Thread

Have I shown you my beautiful Aurifil thread yet?

I am building up quite a collection on top of the single ones that I already have. As there is no shop nearby that carries a decent range of the thread, I thought it best to go for a collection of thread so that I did not always have to order single colours in. Going on the website I went through the collections for ages to find something that would make the most sense to me. Given that I am usually working with muted country type colours this box by Sheena Norquay appealed most to me. I reckon I will have no problem using each and every one of those colours.

The two yellows in the front are slightly variegated and I already used the lighter yellow for one of the baby quilts that I made earlier in the year. Of course, it was brilliant.

Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous...I love this thread!


Tuesday 9 September 2014

99 Hexagon Quilt Top Finished

Finally...I finished the quilt top with hardly any scraps left.

Bit of a dark photo, but just when I was about to photograph this, the weather turned quite ugly. Also, my camera is still in for repairs which is a bit of a hassle...

Anyway this is it. All done! I have just enough black fabric left for the binding and that is it. Have been on the hunt for a backing fabric but cannot find anything suitable. This will have to wait a bit the moment I am thinking that I might just get some solid yellow for the backing, however this could take a while as the yellow seems quite difficult to match.

Apart from this I did some wild FMQ practice today in preparation for my Plus quilt that is waiting to be quilted. Watched some YouTube videos on different designs and then played with Angela Walters hooked swirl design

I love this design but still need to do some more practice on this, particularly the scale...I would like to get it a bit bigger. Not sure whether this will do as an overall design...might have to loose the hook and just go for a bigger swirl...

Anyway this was a lot of fun to idea yet what design I actually would like to do on the Plus quilt.


Wednesday 3 September 2014

Progress on 99 Hexagons

Well, happy to report that I finished the center of my 99 hexagon quilt. My youngest daughter celebrated her 18th birthday the other day, so I spent most of the night in the front room with my hexagons trying to escape the noise but also having a bit of an eye on the front door.

Got heaps done and before I knew it had stitched the last of the hexagons. Very happy with the result. Now only had to read back over my posts re EPP from last year (or was it the year before?) to work out how exactly I tackled the paper removal and squaring up. This is where the blog becomes very handy...only have done that one other EPP project before so I was winging it a bit.

and a look at the back...

If you are interested in the other EPP, have a look HERE  ...I talked about that one for ages!

Continued on with my starching. Again I had difficulties getting the paper out, obviously used too much glue. In the end I had to wet the whole thing down (as the glue is water soluble) and that did the trick. This took me ages and looked like a right old mess but thanks to the starching it all turned out alright. As with my last EPP project I did stitch into the seam allowance around the edges at times. This is a hassle as you have to let the seams out around the edges to square it up. Not much I could do about this and I am hoping that the border around the hexagons will hide some of those little puckers.

This is how far I got today...squared up and ready for the inner border.

Looking good! Can't believe I have got that many hexagons in there...the whole piece is only 33" long, so I am looking at a very smallish quilt here, probably just coming in around 41"x 45".

Linking up to Lorna's Let's Bee Social Linky Party


Monday 1 September 2014

Batting - Is There A Back and Front?

I knew it!...there is indeed a front and a back to batting. Had read about this before but could never remember how to apply this. As I have some issues with bearding from time to time, I researched this a little bit the other day. Found this great description at the  APQS blog

So started looking at the samples that I had, putting the side that I identified as the right side, i.e. facing your quilt top on the left side of the photo.

Bamboo batting

Cotton batting
 Initially I tried to look for the small needle holes that would be evident from needle punching...not that easy to see in the bamboo batting. According to the APQS blog, the small holes reveal the right side of the batting and you want to have your needle go into the batting in the same way that it was needle punched.

This visual inspection was easier for the cotton pieces that I had, but for the bamboo I struggled. I did read on another blog that you can test this with a sewing machine needle. The needle will go through the right side more easily than the wrong side. Was a bit skeptical of this but when I tried, there was definite resistance when I tried to push the needle through the wrong side as opposed to the right side. So, this will from now on be the method I am using to try to determine which way to place the batting.
I am pretty sure that my recent experiences with bearding had to do with me placing the batting the wrong side around, because I had it one quilt but not the other, probably placing it the right way by coincidence.

Linking up to  Anything Goes Linky Party at Stitch by Stitch


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