Wednesday 31 January 2018

Works in Progress!

 Another week of FPP in the Aves quilt BOW.  I love this circular flying geese piece!

I took a trip to my local quilt shop to get my background fabric (and, ahem, just a few more to top up the colour families).  Looking at the box I've got them stored in makes me feel very happy!
 I wasn't sure how I wanted to attach the outer ring to the initial circle.  I ended up machine stitching around each of the appropriate seam lines through the foundation paper and fabric with a big stitch (for easy unpicking) and then appliquing the outer ring to the inner using the stitched lines to guide me.

Of course, I only thought afterwards that I could have made the needle hole lines without thread in.....doh!  Something to remember for the other four circles!
My other WIP is the scrappy triangle quilt.  You can see here the relative piles of trimmed HSTs, untrimmed HSTs and unironed HSTs!  Progress always seems slow at this trimming stage, but I love the precision of the trimmed squares which makes it all worthwhile!

Tuesday 23 January 2018

A Big Start and a Little Finish

 This week saw the start of Kathryn Kerr's (you remember, designer of the 365 challenge quilt) 'Aves' Quilt Block of the Week program.

On Saturday night I sat down and had a chat with my stash.
Participants had already been given fabric guidelines, which includes a recommendation for the use of three main colours and a range of tones within them.  I'm using not just batiks but prints for this quilt.  I don't know if I have the required amount of yardage, but plan to add more fabrics if required over the year.
 I did well on the turquoise, OK on the pink, and need a bit of a top up of purples in order to get the range of tones.
Here they are with the background that I'd like to use - a soft blotchy grey with sprigs of foliage on it.  I know that it was printed by Robert Kaufman but can't remember the name of the range or find it on the Robert Kaufman web site, so I suspect that it's out of print.  A trip to my local quilt shop beckons, as the one yardage that I'd like to keep consistent over the 47 weeks that this will run for.

 And here is the first block!

The outer edges are untrimmed, but I'm happy with how it turned out!  The journey has begun!
 I also made this little lovely.  The pattern is called 'Drawn Together' by Sarah Fielke and finishes 15" square when made like this with out the borders that she suggests.

I still can't decide whether or not I should have quilted the star - but I was happy with the close background quilting!

This is made with foundation paper piecing.  Enough to get me 'into the zone' for the Aves block above, and enough to remind me that I probably don't really want to make a New York Beauty quilt, lovely though I think they look.  I had been wondering about that as a project....

Instead of a New York Beauty I've decided to get back into my scrap drawers.  This is a pile of 5" squares.  I'm planning to split them into lights and darks (more or less), sew them in HST pairs and then to play with them to find a fun layout.  Simple sewing for undemanding fun!

Wednesday 17 January 2018

First Finishes!

 As hoped, I finished this 'Sweet 16' lap quilt.

It has finished at 42" square.  Another one to be passed over to Project Linus - and one more step to dealing with all my scraps!
 It's a nice size to work on, but I still think that making it 60" x 42" would give a more useful size - but I was limited by the scraps that I had in this colour way!  Sometimes you have to listen to what the fabrics or blocks are telling you!  It's fun to work within these 'constraints' sometimes.
 I found myself wondering what to make next - not a usual state of affairs for me, as I often have quite a long list of projects that I'd like to get started with. 

I wanted some simple sewing that would use some of the fat quarters that I was given for Christmas.

After trawling though my mini / small / miniature quilt books I decided on this one from "Little Quilts all Through the House".  Called 'Stars in the Snow' it used three of my fabrics (you can't see the lustre on the background one) to make a Christmassy mini quilt.  I am pleased with how neat my diagonal quilting it.  I shall add it to the others that I hang in the kitchen each year.  It finished at 18" x 14".
My last sewing adventure for the week was to make this card.  I need to set aside some time to make more cards soon, as my stock seems rather depleted at the moment.

This week I plan to start another mini quilt with more Christmas FQs, to consider fabric choices for the BOW that I've signed up for (Aves by Kathryn Kerr - it looks amazing but I'm not sure that I'll be able to keep up with it as it also looks quite intricate!) and to have a look to see which scraps I might use in my next lap quilt.

Lots of planning and thinking there!

Wednesday 10 January 2018

Under my Needle

This little sashed 'sweet 16' is now under my sewing machine needle and having the attention that it deserves  - surging forward to my first completion of 2018, I hope!

The colours are a little brighter than they appear in this photo - in my mind the colours of an African sunset - very cheerful in these grey days!

Wednesday 3 January 2018

Happy New Year!

 The only sewing that I've completed over the last fortnight is this postcard for a birthday swap - the rest of my time and energy has gone into having a lovely time with my family, making memories and laughter together.

I should also mention that I spent some time in A&E and a London Eye hospital.  Nothing seriously wrong, but I'd like to say a resounding 'three cheers' for the NHS and all the staff who worked over the holiday period, particularly those in the West Middx and the Western Eye Hospital.

 I was, however, extremely fortunate at Christmas as my friends and family gave me some tip top presents!

Benta gave me this porthole pouch and scissors keeper - aren't they fab?  If you've previously admired her port hole quilt then you might recognise the style.  Terrific!
 Avril gifted me a fab pair of sprung snips - perfect for someone with a nagging wrist like me - which have a needle threader hidden in the end.  Clearly designed with me in mind!  As well as that lovely set she gave me the softest trimming that I've ever encountered.

 My DH, DD2 and a niece gave me some fabrics.  My brain is humming along deciding which combinations to use and what to use them for.  I've almost decided on making two mini quilts, one a winter one and one for the rest of the year..... but it's hard to decide exactly which patterns to use!
 DD2 also chose these little charms for me - aren't they sweet?
DD1 also bought me ribbons for sewing as well as other craft making pieces.

I'm so fortunate that everyone is so generous - and so mindful of my hobbies!

I hope that you were equally fortunate.  My thoughts have turned once more to those who are not, and I'm keen to get my next Project Linus quilt on the go.

Happy New Year, everyone.  I hope that 2018 brings you all that you'd like!