Monday, 11 July 2016

FAL Quarter 3 list

In terms of the FAL I didn't do very well last quarter, only finishing one project on my list. I had of course done a lot of sewing, but it wasn't on the list ( a tonne of bee blocks and extras for sad reasons like #quiltsforjo and #quiltsforpulse, 2 quilts which I hadn't listed, additions to the wonderful round robin with #bumblinghoneys  and I quilted 3 siblings together quilts for other people)). It's difficult to know whether to add everything but the kitchen sink in these lists or keep it more realistic. As usual, I have more than I could possibly handle ( and of course I keep adding to it). Anyway, here it goes for this quarter.

1) Siblings Together Quilt using the final leftovers from the Kate and Birdie fabric donated by Moda 2 ish years ago.

2) Quilt for Juliette

I've got over half these blocks done and I'm making a big push to get them all finished. 

3)Triangle quilt

I've got the middle section of this quilt to do. I've got bored with it and need to motivate myself to just f ***ing do it!

4)Gnome quilt
This is a very slow burner. I add a little every now and then. I need to focus more..

5)It's a Wonderful world
No excuses, just need to finish it.

6) Star Quilt
No progress on this one

7)Lola Pouch
I have the pattern and the fabric.

8)Majestic Mountains
This is a Together@ do.good stitches quilt. I'm several blocks short but it should be a quick and relatively easy finish.

9)Bumbling Honeys Round Robin

I received this back from the wonderful bumbling honeys who have all made their own additions. I will write a separate blog about it, but I'm thrilled as it has exceeded all my expectations. I now just have to decide whether to add to it or leave it as it is. My son fancies it as a wall quilt so maybe just quilt and face it.

10) Scrappy quilt
I find it quite liberating to make something less structured than the quilts above. I have loads of orphan blocks and a huge pile of scraps, so I'll hopefully make another scrappy quilt this quarter.

I think that's enough. It's not everything by a long chalk, ( I have at least another 2 quilts set aside half finished and fabric for several more )

Linking up with 

2016 FAL

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Another Quilt for Siblings Together

I thought it was about time I posted about my next Siblings Together quilt. Since I last posted my phone has decided to die and I spent ages prevaricating about what to replace it with. DH got very exercised about not being able to contact me 24/7 but then he is wedded to his phone !! It was actually quite liberating for a short while but meant I couldn't take photos. That is not entirely truthful as I do have a camera ( somewhere) but have got so used to how easy it all is with modern phones.

Since I started writing  this, the awful atrocities in Orlando have taken place. We on this side of the pond just can't understand the attitude to guns in USA and why there isn't an uprising to change the law. Even the most diehard rednecks can be outvoted in a democratic society. Anyway, my thoughts are with those affected and their families. I will also make a block or two for the Orlando MQG drive
Enough on my soapbox, here is my latest quilt:

Two years ago I made an almost identical quilt and the way the blocks were constructed meant I had 12 half finished blocks left over. So, I finally pulled my finger out and finished the blocks. This quilt is slightly smaller than the previous one as I didn't add a border of the white crosshatch. I decided to save the small amount I had because I have enough HST's from these quilts to make a third quilt for ST, but I will need the white fabric to make it big enough. I'm amazed that I can stretch it to 3 quilts!!

I quilted it very similarly to the last one, but  I can see that my FMQ skills have improved in the last 2 years.

Quilt Stats
Size: 49 x 64 inches
Pattern by Melissa from Happy Quilting
Front: Storybook by Kate and Birdie ( donated by Moda) with white crosshatch from Botanics Architextures by Carolyn Friedlander
Back : Fabric from Ikea
Wadding:Hobbs Heirloom 100% cotton
Binding: Green fabric from Storybook range.
Quilted with Glide Linen on front and Wonderfil white decobob on back

This is another finish from my FAL Q2 list ( no 5 in my list here)

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Scraptastic Tuesday and My Scrap Vortex Quilt

Like many ( all ?) quilters I have a scrap problem. I'm one of those people who hoards even the tiniest scraps. The problem got so bad, that eventually I had to buy some storage bins for the scraps.

I  managed to sort them out into different colours, and even ironed some of the scraps, but that was as far as it went. I also have a drawer next to my cutting board where I put the scraps from my current sewing, in theory to be sorted at a later date ( usually when the drawer is so full that I can't stuff any more in ).

I have read about other people's organisation of scraps and am in awe. I start out with good intentions but rapidly become bored and abandon it half done.

Anyway, I felt it was about time to do something with at least some of the scraps.  I chose to make a quilt using Amanda Jean's scrap vortex method . This has the advantage that you choose scraps of the same size and build them up into slabs without making any more scraps ( a definite advantage).

I soon got very bored with it though which is why I've made a relatively small quilt. It is very time consuming, largely due to the fact that I mainly used what Amanda Jean calls snippets ( pieces of fabric less than 4 inches). Some of the pieces are only 1/2 inch square when sewn, which is a lot of seams.
I'm very pleased with the way it has turned out, it's truly scrappy but very bright and 'happy'. I backed it also with scraps and made the binding with the scraps from the backing.
The best bit for me was the quilting. I had so much fun and enjoyed every moment .I decided to improve my skills in graffiti quilting and just went for it. 
Sadly the photos aren't doing it any justice and some motifs worked better than others. I used a fabulous golden coloured Glide thread which sparkles in certain light. It was probably silly to do this on such a busy quilt but for me it was worth it.
Quilt Stats
Size: 52 x 62 inches
Front : made entirely from scraps
Back : Scraps of Riley Blake lime dots on white and Lu Summers Summersville Spring Garden Lime Juice.
Binding: Same as back
Wadding : Fabric Freedom 100%  cotton
Quilted with Glide in Military Gold on top, Wonderfil  Decobob in white on bottom
Unfortunately, this was a spontaneous make and it's not listed in my FAL Q2 list. I've decided I'm going to continue and try my hand at a few more scrap quilts if only to clear out those boxes. Though of course they just keep on filling up.
I'm going to donate this quilt to Siblings Together and link up with Scraptastic Tuesday.

Scraptastic Tuesday

Monday, 11 April 2016

FAL Quarter 2 2016

Well, I didn't do too badly in the first quarter of this year, with 5 quilts finished. My list was deliberately a fantasy list, so I'm going to be more realistic this quarter. So, continuing over from the last quarter:
1) Triangle Quilt

I have made a fair bit of progress with this quilt, but I've sort of got bored with it. I'm forcing myself to carry on and get it done.
2) Gnome Quilt
I've made progress with this one too. Just need to do a lot more blocks!
3) It's a wonderful world
No excuse for this one, all the blocks are done. I just need to assemble it.
4) Star Quilt
I have about half the blocks for this done, but it has sat in a cupboard for 4 years. Time to get it finished.
5)Siblings Together Quilt
Yet another quilt for Siblings together. I have enough blocks/fabric left from this quilt to make a second one.
6) Quilt for Juliette
I have promised to make a quilt for Harri's girlfriend. Haven't got a photo, just a few ideas and a colour scheme.
7) Trajectory Quilt
Carried over from last quarter.
 I think that's more than enough for 3 months!

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Whirly Gig Quilt

I hope everyone had a fun Easter break. I was lucky enough to have lots of visitors ( and subsequently lots of cooking to do).  The weather wasn't kind enough to do the planned walk up the Sugarloaf on Easter Sunday, but that was OK.
I managed to finish my Whirly Gig quilt which is another one for Siblings Together and probably my last make in Quarter 1 of the finish- a- long ( original list here ). I was donated a pile of fabric to make a ST quilt and I have used some of it in this quilt, along with scraps and my stash.

It's a very simple but effective pattern made from 2 strips of fabric ( 1 low volume and 1 bright fabric) cut into 4 subunits. I chose to set the blocks on point to give the blocks more 'movement'. I was able to make the blocks as leaders and enders which I find a very useful technique to get more made ( I'm quite a slow sewer, so every little helps!)
I backed it with an extra wide white dot on red , which I also used for the binding.
I don't prewash my fabric because I've never had a problem with dye running before and I like the fact that the dressing on the fabrics make them easier to sew with. I might have to reconsider with darker fabrics like this red although I always put 2 or 3 dye catchers in the machine when I wash my quilts. This time some, but not all,  of the lighter fabrics have a slightly pink tinge or look slightly grungey. In the overall scheme of things, it's not too bad as some of the fabrics have maintained a bright white colour, so it's only noticeable to me because I know what the original colour was. However, I have a large piece of the backing left, which I intend to use on another quilt back and I'll definitely be washing it beforehand.
Of course, sod's law dictated that the binding strips I had cut were about 4 inches short, so I had to insert this tiny piece of binding left over from my Bright Bamboo quilt.
I  try to use a new to me quilting pattern whenever I can, so I used a peapod design on this one. I'm not sure if I'll use it again as an overall pattern but maybe as a filler. I have a new roll of wadding ( Hobbs Heirloom 100% cotton) which is slightly thinner than my last roll but seems to crinkle more after washing ( good job I like the crinkly look!!)
Quilt Stats
Pattern inspired by this Tessellation Quilt  from Rita of Red Pepper quilts
Size: Approximately 64 x 64 inches
Fabric : Donated fabric and my stash on front, Riley Blake extra wide white spot on red on the back and for binding
Wadding : Hobbs Heirloom 100% cotton
Quilted with Glide in grey on top and Wonderfil Decobob in white in bobbin


Sunday, 20 March 2016

Retirement Quilt -Ta Da!

Another quilt finished! This one has more of  a history than some of my quilts and thus has provoked a lot more reflection than usual. This is my first ( and I have to say probably my last) hand pieced quilt. My last year of work was really difficult. I hated it, so much so that I had a calendar where I marked off every week until I could finish. The reasons for this were complex and I won't go into details as it's all water under the bridge. It was also the year we had our house fire and I was miserable. Anyway, to help keep me sane, I decided to EPP a hexagon star quilt. It took me a year to sew all the blocks ( perfect timing) and I sewed them all together, then promptly put it away for another 2 years. Partly this was because I didn't know what to do with it.

 Another concern was how I was going to quilt it. I wondered whether I should hand quilt it, but then reality kicked in and I realised that if I hand quilted it, it would never be finished. The pattern was inspired by Rita of Red Pepper Quilts mother -in - law's quilt. Hand piecing this quilt was the perfect antidote at the time I made it, but I'm not sure if I will ever repeat the exercise. It's not my 'natural habitat'. It was fun fussy cutting some of the stars though

I decided to use a beautiful piece of cotton lawn I'd bought at Malvern some time ago for the backing. Although it was wider than average I needed to add a strip to make it big enough. I was lucky enough to find some of Lu Summer's lime green Summersville spring at Lark cottons and used it for the strip and the bindings. It's such a perfect shade of lime green to complement the front which is much brighter and fresher than the photos convey.

In a way I'm glad I set it to one side. My FMQ skills have improved in the last 2 years and therefore I was able to do it more justice. I quilted a simple flower shape in the middle 'star' and scallops around the edging diamonds.

I haven't decided what to do with it yet. It's too pretty to give away ( except perhaps to my mother but the retirement home is very warm, much hotter than I like and a quilt is a bit superfluous ).
Quilt Stats
Size:69 x 67 inches
Front pieced with fabrics from my stash
Back: Japanese 40's by 40's superfine cotton lawn Miroto Great Flower Designs and Summersville Spring in lime green by Lu Summers for Moda
Binding:Summersville spring as above
Wadding: Quilters dream orient
Quilted with Glide in grey on top and wonderfil 80 wt in white in the bobbin
This is another finish in FAL Q1 ( my original list is here ). I'm doing rather better in this qua 


Tuesday, 8 March 2016

My first Siblings Together Quilt of 2016

The last few months have been very busy, mainly trying to sort my mother out, though that will be another blogpost when I've got a little more perspective. So, the fact that I've done 2 blogposts in 2 days is highly unusual for me!
I wanted to make some more quilts for Siblings Together again this year ( apart from the STquilting bee ones). Hannah sent me some fabric which had been donated to Leeds Modern Quilt Guild by Katy of I'm a ginger monkey. I selected 3 of the fabrics and added 3 of my own to make a trip around the world quilt.

I've made a few of these quilts and I love the way the pattern looks different depending on how you arrange the strips. I made this one in a regular pattern, which I haven't done before. So, although I've used a variety of different yellow strips, for example it's barely noticeable.

The back is scrappy: I used up some of the left over squares to make a strip down the side, which made it wide enough, and used left over pieces from previous quilt backs.

I quilted it with a simple loop, a pattern I hadn't tried before but was fun and quick to do.

To pull it all together, I used navy fabric with a strip of mustard to bind it.

I love how it's turned out! I hope it will make a girl ( it's definitely a girly quilt) very happy.

Quilt Stats

Size: 58 x 68 inches
Pattern: Trip around the world by Bonnie Hunter
Top: A selected variety of scraps
Back: My last piece of Ikea Nummer and Folie in blue by Lotta Jansdotter
Batting: Donated by LMQG
Quilted with Glide in grey on top and Wonderfil in white on the bottom
Binding: Navy XO by Cotton and Steel with one strip of Arrows in mustard by Michael Miller

This is my third finish  in FAL Q4 ( my original list is here)
I'm also linking with Scraptastic Tuesday

2016 FAL