Tuesday 31 August 2021

New Listing In ETSY Shop

Quite excited about this new pattern in my Etsy shop. Was a lot of fun to make and came out really nice. The patchwork pattern consists of two alternating four patch blocks, constructed in bold tone-on-tone fabrics to emphasize the twirling motion of the blocks. I called this quilt the 'Twirlygig' Quilt in reference to a fun children's craft activity where colourful ribbons attached to a stick or similar, are spun around and twirled to create interesting movement and patterns.

The quilt as displayed measures 40.5in x 48.5in and I spent the last few days on including two additional sizes - Toddler and Square (receiving blanket) quilt in the write up. 

How did I come up with this pattern? The quilt is made up of two alternating four patch blocks in a horizontal layout, one of which is the Woven Ribbon block that I used years ago in one of my first baby quilts.

Always liked this quilt, but do not have it anymore as it went as a gift to Germany. Since then I have 'played' around with the block in the EQ8 program and designed several like quilts.

In looking through the program one of these days, I came across the new Twirlygig design and for the life of me could not work out where I got the second block from...was not named or labelled! Very sloppy on my part, however I eventually worked out that I had used a feature of the EQ8 program (Serendipity feature) to change a common block. The resulting block lend itself perfectly to creating the seemingly twirling motion of the quilt blocks. I liked the look of that and a new pattern was born. It is not difficult to make, uses basic piecing techniques, however accuracy is important on this one for the two blocks to seemingly merge together.

Had some fun with the photos again...finding all sorts of 'forgotten' props. Almost identical in colours!

That's it from me today...will have a break and get back to freemotionquilting the rest of that charity quilt that I started the other day.


Tuesday 24 August 2021

Baptist Fan Design on a Sitdown Longarm

Have a few new quilts to quilt from the Orange Tree Quilters group. The first one I tackled is a scrappy quilt made out of Patience Corner blocks.

Looking at it I thought an allover design would be best as I did not feel like stitching in the ditch around all those blocks. Against all better judgement decided to do a Baptist Fan design. Have done this once before on a scrappy quilt...must have forgotten how finicky that can be.

This time though I used a combination of rulers rather than all of the Handiquilter Ring templates for the whole lot. I used my new Amanda Murphy 3in, 5in and 7in circles and then the Handiquilter 9in and 11in. Must say that the circles are definitely easier to hold and manage. The large rings are not that easy to hold stable and alignment is somewhat tricky.

A ruler set that does only Baptist Fans would be probably very useful, however I do not do this design often enough to really justify this.

Made a start...The key to this is really letting go of any kind of perfectionism...you just cannot achieve this. Not sure how difficult this is on a longarm frame machine, but I imagine similarly tricky. On the sit down machine, it is difficult not to slide over a little bit particularly when using those large rings. To counteract this, I frequently stop and adjust my hands, however it is almost impossible to avoid a bit of drifting. As I have done this before, I am not too worried about this as long as my alignment to the to the row underneath is approximately right. The lines itself vary slightly in width, depending how well I aligned the whole thing and whether I drifted over a bit. Again I don't worry too much about it as long as it looks somewhat consistent over the distance.
Sounds all very sloppy, but this is a very forgiving design and when it is all done the eye does not notice those inconsistencies.

Looking good so far. Definitely the right design for this. Stayed mainly on track but I think two of my fans are slightly smaller than the rest by about 1/8in. I do stand back after each row and have a bit of a look whether I stayed on track measuring the height and looking whether the starting points for each fan are lining up with the rows underneath. Will try to fudge the missing 1/8in a bit in the next few rows, however as the piecing is slightly out here and there as well, it will not be noticeable I think. By the way, the wiggly lines you see across the fans is my basting...I do baste my quilts after pinning so that I can get rid of the pins and concentrate on the quilting. It is more work, but I find it easier to quilt undisturbed by pins.

As always really enjoying pushing myself out of my comfort zone a bit, particularly as I am such a perfectionist at heart. 


Wednesday 18 August 2021

New Listing in Etsy Shop

Always takes me about a day to put up a listing in Etsy, even though the process is pretty streamlined. Taking photos takes me the longest time and I always have to chose my timing quite carefully to get the light right. The editing of the photos takes even longer and I often discover things that I can do differently or a little bit better. 

I have put the little quilted nursery panel up for sale. The panel is from the Hello World collection designed by Cori Dantini for Blend Fabrics. To make it a bit bigger I attached an outer border using a fun dotty print that I had left over from a different project. Initially I thought that there was too much white, but turned out really cute once I had the green binding attached.

The small quilt measures 29-1/2in x 39-3/4in (75cm x 101cm)
Useful as a small drag along baby blanket, playtime floor mat or even as nursery wall decor.

Close up of the cute animal characters

I quilted an overall clamshell design over it...really love that for small baby quilts. It's easy to do and goes quite quickly. For this quilt I used a softly variegated yellow thread which goes really well.

Head over to my Etsy shop if you want to have a bit of a closer look.


Tuesday 10 August 2021

A cute little quilt

I bought a couple of baby quilt panels when I went to the last quilt show. Apart from being really cute, I  find them really useful to practice designs on and they are also very handy when you need a baby quilt unexpectedly.

For this little panel I decided on the clamshell design. I used the Handiquilter Multi Clamshell tool for this.
The panel I used is smallish, so this time I marked a 4in grid over it only to realise after that I was going to have only half of a clamshell on each side of a row. So in reality I did not follow my grid at all but used the ruler to keep my design straight and in line with the clamshells underneath. For this purpose I extended the center line of the biggest clamshell right through the writing of the ruler as I needed that line to align the clamshell to the one underneath. Given this was such a small quilt, this worked very well and I more or less stayed on target. A little bit of fudging was needed here and there when some clamshells seemed to become slightly larger...in that case I just stopped in the center of the clamshell and slightly shifted the ruler over to elongate it a little bit. This worked well and there is no way that you could tell this unless you went ahead and measured.

This was incredibly quick to execute...took me just a few hours and it was done.

I would have liked to find an orange binding that matched the border in the quilt, however no such luck, so in the end I decided on the green binding which I think goes quite well.

Bit cloudy today, hence the photo got a bit dark.

Here is a close-up

The clamshells are 2in x 4in which seemed an excellent size for this project. Quilted with a yellow Aurifil 50/2 thread in top and bottom.

Too cute!


Thursday 5 August 2021

A Year of Stars with Natalia Bonner

How quick does the month go by...we had 1 week of lockdown in between which was somewhat unsettling. Had a few appointments booked in which all needed to be re-scheduled, however in the scheme of things not really a big deal (just felt like it when it happened). We have come out ok in the lockdown, unfortunately the same cannot be said for other parts of Australia.

I have lost the plot a bit in terms of this quiltalong as I already have finished the entire quilt (just need to attach the binding). Very hard to remember to post the individual blocks at the beginning of the month as I have moved on to other things. 
So, a year long quiltalong obviously does not work for me...too long and drawn out. I recently saw that Natalia is holding another 9 Patch quiltalong. You can find the information HERE. Anybody wanting to get into ruler work, I can highly recommend her workshops. Thoroughly enjoyed the first 9 Patch quiltalong. The quilt was easy to construct and the designs were really interesting.

Anyway, here is the Midnight Star block for the month of August for the Year of Stars quiltalong.

Happy quilting and stay safe everyone.


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