Monday 31 December 2018

Final Aves Post - and a Happy New Year!

 So, I can't bring myself to write my final Aves post without showing the whole quilt again.

I'm sure that blocking it will reduce the wobbliness of the edges, but I'll have to wait for 63" square of little used carpet to open up for that to happen.....!
 As I thought I might, I went back and added a little more quilting to this roundel, which was a great improvement.
 I quilted meandering feathers in the border.  They improved (slightly!) as I got more used to them.
They show up best on the back, of course.  Many thanks to Kate Fielden for the backing - still working my way through textiles that she left with me before she moved to the other side of the world!
Finally, these were the threads that I used.  Variegated thread in the roundels, dark pink on the 'dark' diamond, dusk egg blue on the 'light' square, and grey and white on the back
depending on the front thread!

I loved sewing this project from start to finish!

New quilting will be happening in 2019, I know. I can hardly wait to get back to my machine.
 Best wishes to you all for a super happy, super healthy 2019.

Tuesday 25 December 2018

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas, one and all!

I'm delighted to have my completed Aves Quilt up on the wall (behind a cupboard, so unfortunately the lower border won't be seen).

Shown here with our knitted nativity in front of it - knitted by my very talented late Mother-in-Law - part of our Christmas decorating every year.

Hope that you are enjoying your festive season too!

Tuesday 18 December 2018

Aves Quilting Continues

 This week I've lightly quilted the remaining three roundels on my Aves quilt.

This is probably the least appealing - the 'fern' quilting pattern should be more filled out between the flying geese spokes, I now think.  I may go back and adjust this if I can think of a good way to do it without unpicking what is there (!).
  I was much happier with this roundel and the flames in the background in particular.
 Shown here in a little more detail
 Again, the background quilting on this one isn't brilliant either - although I liked the loopy design in the centre.
 I then choose to different fill patterns for the not two areas.  The lighter area has 'wind puffs' (or so I like to think of them - like the winds being puffed by cherubs on old maps....).  Quilted in a duck egg blue thread.
The darker area around the roundels has a smallish meander in dark pink thread.

I need to decide on a design for the outer flying geese border now.  I suspect that it will be freeform feathers - it would be a shame to have a quit named Aves and not to have any feathers on it at all!

I still don't know if I'll get it completed before Christmas, but I'm doing my best!

Wednesday 12 December 2018

Aves Quilting - the start

 I've started quilting Aves!

This central roundel is the trickiest to reach, as there is more quilt to bunch up under the sewing machine arm here then anywhere else, of course.  It's made the lines more wobbly than I'd like.  Well, that and the fact that I couldn't manage a full curve on the main star arms in one 'swoop' as I had to reposition my hands each time....   The oyster shells between the points were much easier as my hands stayed in one place.

 I planned out this travelling stitch line for the flying geese and I'm planning to use the same design for all five roundels.

It's hard to come up with quilting that will enhance the piecing, not to either fight with it or dominate it.  I'm hoping that I can use fairly light quilting throughout.
 This was the second roundel that I tackled, and I'm happier with the result of this one.  Perhaps I just had 'starters nerves' on the first one!
 This shows the detail of how I quilted the circling swallows and the outer space.
This shows the flying geese loops again.

Now I need to consider how I'm going to quilt the next roundel that I choose.  It's not the fastest process, but it's one that I'm enjoying!

Wednesday 5 December 2018

A Fast Finish!

 Another visit to the disappearing hour glass block.  I know that I promised a tutorial once before, but I didn't manage to make one this time either, as I wanted a fast finish!  I'm sure that I'll make another one soon and will take appropriate photos at that point.

This has finished at 4' x 6', and is a coverlet (two layers, in this case patchwork and fleece) rather than a quilt.  I keep buying fleece blankets as I love the idea of them, but I'm not sure that I'm awfully successful at turning them into coverlets yet!

Made from stash, with slightly less of the lighter green print than would have been ideal to make the correct number of blocks....
 My other finish this week was a crochet one.  This is the hat that I've made...
 ....with some embellishment bits from a book that I'd picked up in The Works for very little money (called 30 Minute Crochet).
Not yet stitched together, but this is what it will look like when I attach them to the hat.  I'm pleased with this little finish too.  Nice and warm!

Tuesday 27 November 2018

Varied Sewing - Again!

 I thought that I had another few blocks to make, but it turned out that this was the final week of the Kathryn Kerr Aves Quilt Block of the Week 2018!

These easy 3 1/2" blocks.  The final pieces in the jigsaw.

Of course, the hard part was trying to make sure that I got the rest of the outside blocks in the right place and facing the right way, but....

The quilt top is finished!

I'm delighted with it.  Now I just have to decide on a backing fabric, baste it, quilt it, bind it and label it.  I'd really like to have it complete by Christmas....... but at 63" square it is quite a lot to manhandle though my sewing machine, so I'll just have to see how I go.
 I did to complete two other quilts this week, though. 

This one (using up the left over blocks and trying out a quilting idea on this 19" x 29" baby quilt).
 And this one, which was the main user of those lovely scrappy blocks!  At 50" x 66" its one of my favourite sizes to quilt - and is big enough to snuggle under if it's on a sofa.  I really hope that the recipient likes it, as I love the way that it's come together.
 I quilted with orange thread, bound the edge with orange fabric, and backed with a fabric that has plenty of orange dots in it.  Pleased that I had the right fabrics and threads in my stash for completing this.
 Having discovered how difficult the 'circles' were on the baby quilt, I opted to just have one circle quilting section on this one - in the focal square.  The rest was covered in a large meander.
These items were also made this week.  Much faster than the other big projects!  Made from some of the fabric that I was gifted by one of DD's friends last week. 
Finally, the smallest make of the week - a fabric postcard which is winging it's way over to Germany.

Isn't it brilliant what a variety of items you can make from some fabric so long as you have some time?

Tuesday 20 November 2018

Varied Sewing

 First of all, I have to ask that if any of you, dear readers, think that I have your email address, you are almost certainly wrong.  My laptop hard drive died, and although I'd backed up my photos and documents, I hadn't thought to back up my email account contacts.  If you'd like to be in contact with me by email, please drop me a line - thank you!

Now, to the sewing.  This was my version of Aves week 43 - a much simplified version that still didn't go together very well!
 I made some more fabric buckets / baskets - and finally finished the crochet bag that I was working on, seen in the 'project bucket' here.
 Time for a little handsewing after that.  The edges of the hexagons are 1".

Fun to try, but I'm not such a fan that I'm planning lots more of them.
 I came across a couple of zippy pouches that were cut out but not sewn (can you tell that it's been a tidying up sort of week?!?) so back to the sewing machine to complete them.

 Then it was time for four 6.5" blocks for the corner of the Aves quilt.

It seems late (only three more weeks to go!) to be introducing another fabric, but I bought this from Creative Quilting recently and love it.  Admittedly, leaves rather than feathers, but I love it!
Finally, making some more strip blocks and pulling them all together into trial layouts.  Not a great photo, but you get the idea!

I'm thinking of how to quilt it now - and putting off basting it!

I've also delivered 13 quilts to Project Linus this week so it really was a week of varied activities!

Hope that you've been enjoying some sewing or crafting time too!

Tuesday 6 November 2018

Seaside Sunshine

My seaside themed fabric postcard was just about the only sewing that I managed this week.  Good intentions overtaken by family socialising (and recovery from the socialising!) instead.

However, I've got another Aves block ready to sew and some fabric basket / bowls begging to be finished, so I'll happily be back at my sewing machine tomorrow!

Tuesday 30 October 2018

Show's Over!

 Our group quilt show is over.  For three days the cathedral like space of The Landmark Art Centre was filled with quilty colour, inspiration and outright loveliness - but now it is over. 

Avril, of Stitchinscience won the visitors choice award for her 'Bigger Australian Splash' - congratulations Avril!  Apologies for the poor photo - you can see a much better one on her blog here.
 I had the chance to see my 'Ultimate Sampler 365' quilt hung for the first time - the bottom was still draped on the floor, as it is such a monster quilt, but I was pleased to see it on display.

Big thanks to the committee and all the other group members (and their families!) for making the show happen.  They did a great job of hanging so many lovely pieces and giving over 600 visitors pleasure, as well as raising money for both REACT and the British Heart Foundation.
 There were many other quilts in many styles.  Lots to think about.  Apologies in advance, but the photos of the hanging labels that I tried to take were of even poorer quality than the quilt photos, so I don't have attributions for all of them.  My photography skills in the low light level of late Sunday afternoon were not quite up to the task!  If you recognise your quilt here without your name then please let me know!

I suspect that this was foundation pieced.
 This quilt had been hung at the Sisters outdoor quilt show too.  Isn't it gorgeous?
 Love a jelly roll play - I think that this was by Karen.
 Another piece of beauty by Avril - wonderful piecing and quilting shown here.
 Fabulous art canvas by Karen.  Lots of different techniques drawn together with their palette and theme.
 Benta's Ferris Wheel. Paper pieced.  Love the colours and the quilting on this too.
 Back in the sewing room (after a good rest!) I sewed these two Aves Quilt blocks.

This is number 40 - a 6.5" block.
Number 41 brings me back to up date - another 6.5" block.

Love sewing!  Love the friends that I've made through sewing!  Love playing with fabric in all sorts of ways!

Friday 26 October 2018

Show Time!

26th -28th October 2018 

Friday & Saturday 10am-5pm  Sunday 10am-4pm                                      

LANDMARK ARTS CENTRE  FERRY ROAD, TEDDINGTON TW11 9NN   Admission £3, Children free    
Lots of quilts to see (including several of mine), traders, raffle, quilter bric-a-brac, and a cafĂ© for when it all gets too much and you need to sit down! 
If you have a chance do come along and visit - there are some really lovely quilts to see and lots to inspire you!

Wednesday 17 October 2018

A finish!

 These little 3 1/2" squares made up the requirement for week 39 on Aves block of the week.

Cute, but I'm a bit worried that I'm running short of my light colours already, and we still have several weeks of lights to go, I think!  It's going to be 'nip and tuck' - although at least as I'm making a scrappy version I'll be able to add in additional fabrics if I need to - although I'll need to hit the shops as anything from my stash is already in the pile ready to use!
My finish is really a 'group quilt' finish.  Made for DD1's form teacher who is about to go on maternity leave, the girls decorated the required blocks with good wishes, colourful motifs and their names.  I merely helped by putting it together and finishing it off.  Dreadful photo, but in real life, a lovely meaningful quilt!

I'm now at a pause - I need to decide which of the many options I have I choose for my next quilt.  I think that I might have a look in my scraps drawer and decide whether its going to be from scraps or yardage before any other decision can be made!

Tuesday 9 October 2018

Wee Braw Bags and more

  First of all, my weekly block for Aves Quilt.  Another fun design by Kathryn Kerr for our Block of the Week program.

 My other sewing has been bag related.  After making one 'wee braw bag' as  part of the baby shower gifts, I made another three - getting ready for Christmas....
....and then another one this morning for a birthday that is coming up.

I'm enjoying trying to choose the fabrics that I think the recipients will like.  Turns out that my stash of liberty type fabrics wasn't as extensive as I'd remembered.  On the plus side, I rediscovered some lovelies that I hadn't seen for a while, so my head is busy again with ideas for another quilt.  Isn't that always the way?!?