Tuesday 31 July 2018

Dragging My Feet

Our local Quilt Show was in the beginning of July
My little quilt won 1st place in the Open Category of Other Techniques. Was a bit chuffed with that as this was only meant to be a practice ruler project and the fact that I only used minimal marking to put the design down.

Since then I have been working on my 1000 Pyramid quilt which is in danger of going onto the UFO pile. Doing the Baptist Fan design on it is taking a very long time and is quite fiddly, but I am half way through, so I do not want to give up. Apart from this I am in some sort of hibernation...this usually happens to me after a big quilt show. Maybe it is inspiration overload or just the busy-ness of those days and I start dragging my feet with all sorts of other tasks. I was actually going to retire from work in April however this is just dragging out a bit with no immediate resolution. I guess it is not that easy after all to just walk away after some 30 years! 

I also need to construct new quilt tops and have been playing around with a number of ideas...again, too much inspiration and not enough time. For the moment I am going to construct another ruler quilt as I am again participating in the Handiquilter Ruler of The Month Club (missed no 2, so this will be no 3). Some interesting rulers in that lot
Image from https://handiquilter.me/ruler-of-the-month-club/
So I had a look around what I have got in my stash and found some Hoffman Bali Snaps. Had the hardest time to sort this into a graduated colour scheme

In order to make it wider had to play around a bit in the EQ8 program. Still exploring the upgrade and learning the different layout of the program.

Also still working on the Challenge quilt from our local group...actually already running behind a bit, so I really do need to finish off the 1000 Pyramid quilt!

And what is wrong with Blogger! Why are they not fixing the email notifications that we used to get when somebody commented. Very annoyed with that... please be assured that I do read your comments and will answer via the blog.  


Friday 27 July 2018

What a Crazy Idea

So I am about half way through my 1000 Pyramid Quilt quilting a Baptist Fan design all over it.
I did trial this on a lap sized quilt before that and it worked really well. Given the size of this quilt I was a bit hesitant, however started it and am obviously committed to it by now. I am using the Handiquilter Circle Ring Set to do this. Wow, what a hassle! It is absolutely do-able as you can see, but consistency went out of the window by the second row because the alignment is just a bit difficult having the quilt scrunched up on all sides.  In thinking about this, this made a lot of sense to me because you are shifting, scrunching, moving etc...there is no way one would get this exact, so I concentrated on getting this approximately right because it does not really make a difference. Worked out a system of alignment that allowed me to more or less eyeball the alignment of the ruler (the HQ rings got a very handy 1/4in line ruled on there and some straight lines that helped a lot. I do mark in a straight line after each row of fans and then also mark in vertical lines at the widths of the fans, but overall just going for approximates.

Must say that this is a bit of a handful and requires a bit of patience. This quilt will go in the spare room so I am not too fussed really how consistent this turns out and I will probably not try this again on such a big quilt, however for a smaller lap size quilt this is definitely a great design to do on the Sweet 16.

Apart from this I am trying to work out what to next, problem is I am having too many ideas...


Sunday 8 July 2018


I made a start on my 1000 Pyramid quilt...

Once I basted this thing, I went over it with the basting stitch of the HQ Sweet 16 in a broad meander pattern.
You can see how I stuffed the whole quilt to the left of the machine...not rolled up, just bunched together in a big bundle. Once that was done, I went around the edges with the Versa Tool, still using the basting stitch
That is one thing I have used from the beginning with this machine, saving me heaps of time in terms of going around the edges of a quilt and I am used to doing this with the Versa Tool (has these little notches which I line up so that it stitches about 1/8in from the edge).

Then came the Baptist Fans...could not resist trying this, although I was still not convinced that this would work
Starting off...
...and having 2 rows done
Hard to see, even though I am using a 40/2 wt Aurifil thread. The scrappiness of the quilt just soaks it up. This is a good thing as consistency is a bit lacking, however overall it looks really good. I am making the fans slightly bigger, i.e. 5.75in instead of 5.5in (my largest ring gives me an 11in circle) so that the fans do not land on the seams. This is where the HQ Echo foot became really handy
This is the 1/2in Echo Foot. Looks a bit intimidating, but I must say I almost find it easier to stitch with this. Have not once trailed off and find it easy to work with. Took me a while to work out a workable process for quilting the fans, i.e.
- placed the quilt in a bundle to the left and then moved the bundle under the machine to the right onto the next table as I went along
- had a chair next to me with all the rulers and bitses, as the quilt kept pushing things off the table
- did temporary marks on the quilt of 5.75in width and height so that I would roughly stay on track

Overall, a half ring set would probably be better in terms of holding and aligning the rulers, however I am obviously not going to buy yet another ruler set just for this. I bought the circle set specifically to do circles of various diameters and this set is particularly handy as you can ride on the inside for some of the sizes. 

We will see how this progresses. For now, all is well...will be very interesting to see how I am going to manage this as I am getting more to the middle.


Tuesday 3 July 2018

Taming The Beast

I finally knuckled down and attacked the basting of my 1000 Pyramids quilt. Was unsure exactly how I would do this, i.e. whether to spray baste or to pin paste. This quilt turned out a bit big, approx. 66in x 87in! I have done spray basting before and like it but have little room to do it and also was not a friend of the mess that it created around the basted piece (i.e. had to wash the floor twice as all that sticky stuff was spread out all over the place as I got it on my socks).

Anyway, decided against the spray basting as I am also not sure how I will quilt this and thought that it would be good to get a sense of how heavy and unruly this quilt was going to be.

So I followed my trusted 'crawling around the floor' method (yep, paid for that the next day with a very sore back).
Lucky, I was by myself as there was no space left to walk around anywhere. I pin basted it very tightly as I did not want to risk any shifting or distortion as I am not going to stitch-in-the-ditch (that much I know).
I then took it to the HQ Sweet 16 and had some fun using the inbuild basting stitch (at 1/2 sec) and noodled around the pins, taking about half of them out as I went along. This went surprisingly fast and secured the quilt even more. The handling was not as bad as I thought it would be as I do have a fair amount of space around me, i.e. one extension to the left and on the right I have my cutting table, so it was just a matter of laying it out properly.

Still don't know exactly what to do...am tempted to try to do the Baptist fan with the rulers...would look lovely on that but just not sure whether this would become too difficult given it's size.

Linking up to Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework 'Oh Scrap Linky'

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