Friday 30 December 2022

Best of 2022 Linky Party

My post will highlight my five most favourite finishes for the year.

#1 I started the year with an online class with Bethanne Nemesh - Breaking Boundaries. Fabulous!
It started with making a number of improvisational quilts - something I have never done before, so I was really nervous about it. Bethanne's teaching was really detailed and made this new learning experience real fun and easy. Highly recommended!

My favourite quilt top was the one with the Koi fish
It's not quilted yet...we made five improvisational quilts in that workshop! I am really proud of this quilt top...lots of firsts for me on that and it actually turned out great. Also special about this is that some of the fabrics are actually from Japan. My daughter brought me a little blue fabric pack from Japan when she went over there some years ago.

#2 Still related to the above workshop, I then started a background filler project...I should have used the quilt tops that we made in the workshop, however once again I got side tracked and chose something completely different. 
This is a panel from Australian fabric designer, Denise Burkitt

It was absolutely epic and I must say, probably the hardest project that I have attempted in the last few years. Nearly chucked it in half way through but knew that it would be years before I would pick it up again, so I persisted.

Here is the finished quilt at the local quilt show.

#3 Also finished off an UFO from 2020. I do love Elizabeth Hartman's designs and attended a workshop at our local sewing shop in 2020 and yes, it just ended up in the pile of UFOs despite all good intentions. So finally finished this little wall hanging this year.

#4 My next favourite project is a charming little charity quilt that I quilted in the last quarter of the year. I used this to practice freehand feather wreaths, i.e. just doing minimal markings and just going for it. After a few attempts on practice sandwiches and a more concentrated think through that worked really well and looked rather charming on this quilt.
This was a most valuable exercise...I sort of knew how to go about it but needed to fine tune this a bit and this little charity quilt just fitted the bill.

#5 Very special...I finally took that sheep drawing that my daughter did when she was small and turned it into a table runner. Together with my daughter we had a bit of fun with this and decided to give our sheep a Christmas hat to be able to put it up in the Etsy shop for Christmas. 

It turned out super cute!

There were of course lots of others but I had to choose. Linking up to Meadow Mist Designs for the annual Best of 2022 Linky Party.


Tuesday 27 December 2022

I have been busy!

Finished my little pink baby quilt

It came out at 31in x 40-1/8in (78.7cm x 101.9cm)

Looks are a few photos of my handiwork

Even had a suitable backing that I have been saving for 'I don't know what...' since the early 2000s. Suited this little quilt perfectly.

I have put it up in my Etsy shop so hopefully it will go at some stage soon. I am seriously running out of space over here.

I am linking up to Texas Quilt Girl who is hosting her last To Do Tuesday today. Thank you Linda for taking the time to host this...really appreciated!

My list for the week to come will be simple and smallish:
- cut out the fabric for a new pattern so that I can put this together without interruption. The fabric is washed and ready to go.
- have a look at and think about the Peter Rabbit Quilt that I have agreed on quilting for somebody else. Will show a photo of this next time.

That's it for me, need to build in some relaxing...


Thursday 22 December 2022

To Do Tuesday - 21/12/22

Last week was a whirlwind of Christmas shopping. Not very organised this year...went to the city about four times! Now there is only food shopping left which we will have to do later in the week. I am looking forward to just relaxing.

Last week's goals were small, but achievable
- stitch a simple charm square quilt together from fabric that has been sitting in my stash for many years. 
- make a start on a new pattern, i.e. get the cutting of the fabric done
- prepare for Christmas which of course we left to the last minute again!

Well, Christmas shopping done ✔

Made a start on that little Charm Square Quilt. Had the squares already ready to go and managed to baste it and start the quilting. 
So pink and very cute. Decided beforehand that I wanted to do one of those edge-to-edge designs over it and made a start on it.
Explained this elsewhere on the blog (see one of the posts HERE) how I do this on a sitdown longarm machine. In brief...I use Golden Threads paper for this where I trace the design on and then stitch over this. Time consuming...yes, but so rewarding in the end.
Chose the Daisy Dotz design from Urban Elementz again, even though I have a number of other flower designs on hand. Thought that the leaves had to be in there as the fabric has little ladybugs on there. Love doing relaxing.

This is what this looks like
I trace the design with a blue water soluble pen (you could also stitch through several pieces of papers without thread to avoid having to re-trace this over and over again). This ensures that I do not get accidental marks on my fabric. If anything it will be the blue residue of the marking which, of course, washes out.

Here are the first two rows
Love that design! As you can see I do take the paper out as I go along except for that little bit down the bottom...this is where the next two rows line up. Its got the last row stitched out and bitses of the next row drawn on, so you have two places to line up the next lot. Also check my stitching at this stage...tension, points and generally to get a bit of a look what that looks like. I do leave the basting in until I am totally finished and the pins on the bottom definitely will be removed when the next row is placed. I do attach the paper with removable glue dots (and the line of pins on the bottom and top) so that nothing moves too much as I go along.

Have several more rows to go since then and will finish this hopefully before Christmas.

Also made a start on a new pattern, however realised that my block sizes were wrong (like a nine patch that measured 10in???). As this is going to be a custom layout that meant painstakingly going in (EQ8) and changing every single element of the design to accommodate the change in block size. Got it done, however have not cut out my fabric as yet. That will have to wait for another day.

Linking up to Texas Quilt Gal for To Do Tuesday and wishing everybody a very Merry Christmas with lots of nice food, good company and hopefully some quiet time for a little bit of relaxed quilting.
Also linking up to Freemotion Mavericks at Quilting & Learning- What a Combo

Tuesday 13 December 2022

Last Mini Wholecloth Finished - To Do Tuesday 13/12/22

Well, I lost the plot again for a few weeks in terms of my weekly goals, however did manage to finish at least one thing from my list a few weeks ago.

Finished the last of the little wholecloth quilts for a workshop next year.

Have three examples of the same design now and plenty to talk about. The last one, the yellow wholecloth was a bit of an exploration of thread. I used Magnifico 40/3 wt thread from Superior for that for the main elements and 100 wt Invisafil for the background.

It looks lovely in that gold colour and the feathers in particular stand out more than in my other samples. Stitching the feathers with this weight though required a slightly different approach in stitching them. Rather than doing heirloom or bump-back feathers I had to stitch them as continuous feathers to make that look nice and tidy (meaning that all the backtracking was along the length of the feather rather than on top). Had not done this for a while and really enjoyed the slow stitching of that. So therapeutic.

For the background I used 100wt Invisafil in a tan colour. Would have been great if I had a more gold colour but that's what was on hand and I really wanted to try to see the effect. I stitched swirls in the outer surrounds, again to have a bit of a look at what that looked like. Very happy with how this turned out. I kept my swirls smaller...definitely something I learned from doing these Mini Wholecloth quilts, i.e. everything has to be a bit smaller to keep with the smallness of the project. I think the swirls would have been over-powering with a higher weight but with Invisafil they just blend in. Also used what Cindy Needham described as a scribble rather than a micro stipple in some areas which is a super small micro stipple with little regard to whether you go over some lines or not...really enjoyed that and it looks insanely dense and flat...just what I wanted for those areas. 
Overall great little exercise, but that is it now for this design. I am now working on some notes for the workshop and will have to do a few more drawings for my handout.

My goals for the coming week

- stitch a simple charm square quilt together from fabric that has been sitting in my stash for many years. Just needs to be gone
- make a start on a new pattern, i.e. get the cutting of the fabric done
- prepare for Christmas which of course we left to the last minute again!

Linking up to Linda's To Do Tuesday over at Texas Quilt Gal


Friday 2 December 2022

Another Charity Quilt and Other Stuff

Finished one of my charity quilts. This one was particularly cute...a house quilt. Love those.

Ideally I would have liked to quilt in the background of the houses and put a nice pattern on each roof, however that would have ended up over-quilted (as a charity quilt) and additionally would have taken a fair amount of time. So in the end I decided to do an allover loopy meander over it. Loved doing that as it flowed really nicely and I than could stitch out the meander a bit bigger. Gives this quilt a nice playful feel.

Last week I looked for a binding for my little mini wholecloth as I was sure I had a piece of dusty pink in my cupboard. For the life of me, could not find it and ended up putting a slightly lighter pink binding on. Following this I thought that I really needed to clean up my cupboard with all the fabric all over the place...did that this week and yes, you guessed it...found that dusty pink fabric neatly folded away between two pieces! Well, too late as I already finished putting the binding on that pink wholecloth.

While looking at all the fabric and supposedly cleaning up, finally also pulled some fabric out that I have had sitting there since 2006 (the little ladybug fabric)! No idea what I was waiting for...I pulled it out and decided to cut it up into charm squares and just put it together with some white and hot pink squares. Probably will offer that for sale in my Etsy shop...this just needs to go. Will put this together over Christmas and quilt a nice edge to edge design over it. Those little quilts always turn out really cute.
Will not bore you with all the other potential projects that were hidden away...really need to get going on making a dent in my stash and finish a bunch of projects.

Also made some progress on another Mini Wholecloth for my class next year, this time in eggshell yellow.
Will stitch this out with gold Superior Magnifico (40/3) thread for the main elements and then do the background with a tan 100wt Invisafil thread. This should be interesting. Not sure yet what I put in all the background, but I marked a grid behind the hearts just in case I want to use it (forgot this in my last wholecloth).  I am thinking to incorporate some swirls but need to think that through a bit more. Looking forward to this.
Also worked a bit on the content of my class so I feel it is all coming together.

Can't believe the year is coming to a close much to do still!


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