Sunday, 6 November 2011


I've neglected the quilting blog of late, it's not that I haven't been sewing, rather that I haven't achieved very much with said sewing. However, a couple of weeks ago I had a head cold, I didn't feel like doing anything big, but I did fancy making "something". The result of this creative surge is two bags, one a casual shopping bag made from an Amy Butler pattern called the Swing Bag and the other a lunch bag made from a pattern I saw in a recent Australian Homespun magazine. I used Insul-bright for the wadding, so hopefully it will have some thermal properties, I'm sure it's more than adequate to keep my lunch in good nick on my Wednesday sewing days :o). You may recognise the fabric of the Swing Bag from the Happy Quilt, I've got enough leftovers to make a couple more quilts, let alone a small bag and scarf!

I did also recently make a bed topper for my yoga teacher in exchange for a yoga massage, which took much longer than anticipated as I tied it. However, in my haste to finish it and hand it over, I forgot to take a photo :(. I will try to remember to ask her to take a quick snap, I was pleased with the end result.

In addition to this, I've been quilting the Christmas Quilt. I've also been doing a lot of reverse sewing, hence the delay in updates. I did at one point think it was done bar the binding, but there were so many tucks and pleats in the border quilting that I had to take it all out and go back to the all-over pattern, rather than just having that in the middle with something different round the edges. When it's done I will post a picture - my target is to get it finished before Christmas. I seem to have been working on it forever, but looking back at the blog I see it's only since mid-May. Having said that, that's nearly 6 months ago ...

Saturday, 9 July 2011

July Christmas Quiltalong - Good Progress

The Glace quilt now has the centre quilted, I really like the way the back looks too. "Just" the border to do!

Slow Progress

I'm struggling to get going today, so far this morning I've ripped out the paper from one row of quilting and I've started sewing another row. I've also been for a walk, had lunch and then had a post-lunch nap. Better get to it if I'm going to make any real progress today :o).

Monday, 4 July 2011

Glace - Quilting Started

I've done a little of the quilting on Glace over the last few weeks, but it's been slow progress. However, we've got a Christmas Quiltalong coming up on Saturday, so I'm hoping to hit it hard :o). I've done the most difficult one down the centre, each row should be easier than the last.

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Glace - Top is Together

I've spent the last couple of days off and on putting the blocks together and I'm pleased with how it's looking - the dark red around the outside was definitely the right choice. OH says it looks very rich and Christmassy. We're off on holiday for a few days (a short break in Brecon), but I'll be thinking about the borders and should have come to a decision by the time I get back. Actually, I think I've already decided, but I'll let it stew for a bit longer. Then I'll need to get searching for a holly pantograph for the centre. If I use the dimples red for the large border, I'll do a separate design around the edge. The quilt looks slightly different to before because I've photographed it upside down, I thought for a moment I'd got some blocks turned around!

This is the thread that I'm planning to use for the quilting, it looks quite pink in this picture, but it's not that far out from the reds in real life, and it will be fine by the time it's just one thread. It's Wonderfil Tutti, a 50wt cotton, and it'll be my first time trying this thread. It seemed very expensive at £8.20, but it is a 1000m reel, so it's cheaper per metre than the King Tut - that is assuming you need 1000m!!

Yesterday I bunked off and went to Quilts UK at Malvern. I had a lovely day, as did OH who went for a walk on the Malvern Hills. It was great to get out and do something normal, even though I was pretty cream crackered by the end. I fell asleep on the sofa at about 8:30pm and then had no trouble at all sleeping through the night - I must have needed it and I feel much better today for it, which is just as well as self-catering always involves rather a lot of packing. Here's a quick snap of my haul from the quilt show - notice, no fabric!! That must be a first. The bobbins were all in my possession already, it's just the box that's new. I looked at the bobbin boxes and they seemed very flimsy, this is a bead box from The Quilted Bear and there's plenty of room for expansion. It has a nice solid feel to it and sliding locks - essential for the day you inevitably drop it! A bargain at £2.79! Oh, now I feel cheated, I've just looked it up online and it's only £1.98 on their website. Oh well, at least I didn't have to pay the £3 postage :o).

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Glace - Layout Final

I have taken Hazel's advice and moved a couple of blocks around and also cut the red setting triangles - what a difference they make! I think I'm happy with this layout, the next decision is borders.

Glace Quilt - Layout

I'm liking this (I think!) ... have I got the reds and blues distributed evenly enough?

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Glace Quilt - Blocks Done

It's taken a few days, but I now have all 32 blocks completed. I started out sewing the base block onto a long strip, then cutting it to length with scissors. However, after 5 blocks I decided this wasn't accurate enough (though measuring the blocks shows they're all the 10.5" they should be), and also the method didn't lend itself to chain piecing which I prefer to do. So, most of Sunday was spent cutting my strips into the correct sized chunks, which made piecing the blocks much quicker. I also found a nice red dimples fabric at Hobbycraft, so I'm going to make the setting triangles from that, then decide what looks best for the borders. I think this quilt is going to be scrappier than I like, and I'm hoping that by framing it with a strong colour it'll tame it a bit. I'll do a layout on the carpet tomorrow and see how it grabs me.

Saturday, 14 May 2011

May Christmas Quiltalong - Three More Blocks

I haven't spent much time sewing this afternoon, we had a little outing to a local village (library, butchers, kitchen shop and a flower festival in the church where I also was able to admire the recently made quilted banners behind the choir stalls), but here's my progress so far. I've used some repeat fabrics in these blocks, I'm sure they'll be more spread out in the final quilt.

May Christmas Quiltalong - Two Blocks

I couldn't stay away from the fabric for long. I fiddled around cleaning the machine, then decided to "just" make a couple of blocks to see how they'd look. Stopping for lunch now.

May Christmas Quiltalong - A Start

I've cut some squares, untied the jelly roll and even found some toning greens in my stash. I've also set up the machine in the conservatory, dropped OH in a village a few miles away so he can walk home (this was voluntary on his part LOL!) and stopped in at the local garage to buy some cadburys mini eggs. I'm all set ...

Friday, 13 May 2011

May Christmas Quiltalong 1

Today is quiltalong day, I haven't managed the last few, but I was hit by sudden inspiration this morning. Watch this space ... It's going to involve a jelly roll called Glace.

Thursday, 12 May 2011

The Happy Quilt is Finished

I've really enjoyed making this quilt and the colours are so joyful that I've called it The Happy Quilt. I've just finished stitching the binding down this afternoon, and that's made me happy too!

A quick summary of the details. The pattern is from a book called Scrap Basket Surprises by Kim Brackett and it uses a jelly roll of fabric, plus one neutral background fabric. The pattern suggests buying a separate binding fabric, but I used up leftovers from the jelly roll and the offcut from the backing fabric and am pleased to report that I have virtually nothing left. The jelly roll is by Moda and the fabric range is Eden by Lila Teuller. My background fabric was a white on white that I had in my stash. I used Hobbs Polydown wadding which has given it a nice texture and a light soft feel, and I quilted it with King Tut thread in Sunstone (a pale yellow which is very subtly variegated, but you can't really see that unless you look at it wound on the bobbin!). As usual, I traced the quilting design onto Golden Threads quilting paper and stitched it on my lovely Bernina 630 sewing machine with BSR attached. The finished quilt is 52" x 68".

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Progress on Eden Quilt

In between regular breaks and with help from OH, I've managed to get my latest quilt sandwiched. I've also decided on the quilting design and have drawn up all my strips of Golden Threads quilting paper. The next stage is going to be harder work, manhandling the quilt under the machine, so it might not get done for a couple of days. However, I'm pretty pleased with how well I managed to calculate the strip widths and I'm looking forward to making a start. I'm going to quilt it with a light yellow King Tut thread called Sunstone. Click on the picture to get a better idea of the design I've chosen.

Friday, 6 May 2011

Naughty but Fun!

So much for gloating about making my latest quilt top from my stash, I just had a quick look online to see if there was anything available for backing and guess what? There was a load of the range on sale at $5.99 a yard. How can you say no to that??? And the double bonus? The customs men didn't stop either parcel, so less than a week after I ordered it, here it is in my sweaty paws. Can't wait to get onto the next stage. And yes, I do realise there is a lot more fabric here than I need for a backing - just as well I've sold some stuff on ebay recently :o).

Great service from this company, would highly recommend.

A Better Picture (ish!)

Thursday, 5 May 2011

The Borders Are On

Just a quick snap, not very good as it's artificial light, but you get the idea.

Without flash

With flash

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

More Sewing!!

Fiddling around with Wonkey Donkey has got the creative juices flowing, as has flicking through a book called Scrap Basket Surprises. And what makes a quilter happiest of all? Starting a new project LOL! There are plenty of UFOs on the list, but only a new quilt would do. As OH pointed out, I haven't made a girly quilt for ages, so here's what I've done in the last two days, a lovely fresh pink & mauve spring quilt top (borders still to be completed). I've used a jelly roll from a range called Eden by Lila Teuller and a white on white, both of which were already in my stash and the pattern is in the aforementioned book. It's gone together very quickly and I'm pleased that the pinwheels have reasonable points. Not having the machine out for a couple of months doesn't seem to have had too much of a detrimental effect on my sewing ability :o).

Monday, 25 April 2011

Wonkey Donkey Progress

I started this little applique quilt donkeys years ago (hee hee, sorry, couldn't resist!), and am determined now to finish it. It's not big and the large donkey on the lime green background (Dillon) is already done. I've spent the last two days cutting out and sticking down (Lite Steam-a-Seam 2) the rest of the shapes, now I just need to machine blanket stitch around them before I can assemble the quilt. The pattern is by an Australian design team called Hot Possum and I bought it when I went to the Houston quilt show 5 1/2 years ago. It'll be good to get it off the UFO list.

Sunday, 17 April 2011

Another Little Cardigan

I've has this little chap knitted up for a while, but haven't got around to sewing it together. That has now been remedied, I think it could do with a press and it needs a button, but otherwise I'm very happy with it. Like the other baby cardigan, it's knitted in Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino, it's such a lovely soft yarn and easy to work with.

Lucky Me

I was very fortunate recently to win a gorgeous roll of fabric from Shabby Fabrics - simply by commenting on their blog. This is an RJR pre-cut called Twice the Charm, it's 35 pieces of 5.5" x 22", I think I can make something a reasonable size from it, but I don't want to unwrap the roll yet! The range is Scarborough Fair by Robyn Pandolph and it's beautiful. Shabby Fabrics is an online fabric store that I've spent a fair amount of money in in the past, so I am more than happy to recommend them. If you're into florals, they can't be beat!

Monday, 28 February 2011

More Easy Knitting

Little projects that are quick and easy to pick up and put down seem to be the order of the day at the moment. Here's another pair of socks I've made recently.

Friday, 25 February 2011

Some More Easy Knitting

I made a cute little hat to go with the cardigan I made recently, I love it! I've also managed to buy some pink ribbon to finish off the cardi properly.

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Some Easy Knitting

I needed a very simple and straightforward project to keep me going recently, and this is the result. The ribbon is only temporary, it will be replaced by a nice matching pink one when I next get to a shop selling ribbon. The jacket is knitted in Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino from a pattern in her Baby Cashmerino Book 2. I'm now working on a little matching hat. As far as I know there aren't any babies due at the moment in the family, which is actually a fairly rare event. At times in the past there have been half a dozen (friends and family) waiting in line for quilts. This will go in a special cupboard, waiting for the next announcement :o).

Monday, 7 February 2011

Spring Table Topper

The table looked very bare after the autumn and Christmas stuff was packed away, so a request was made for a spring table topper. I had a charm pack in my stash from a Moda range called Fresh by Deb Strain, along with some leftover white on white and some green Makower dimples fabric. The squares went together quickly, the quilting took an afternoon and the scalloped edging a few more hours. It's more late spring/early summer, but I'm happy with it and it reminds us of the weather we're looking forward to.

The thread used for quilting the top was some leftover King Tut 988 (Oasis) and as you can see I only just had enough! The thread on the back was a Mettler cotton also from my stash. The wadding used is Warm & Natural, a nice flat wadding for table runners. I'm pleased to report that the whole thing was made from my stash, a rare event indeed!