Sunday, July 6, 2014

Finish Along Quarter 2

I put nine projects on my list for this quarter, which was pretty ambitious.  So how did I go?

Open Your Windows quilt - I didn't touch it.  I'm still looking for suitable backing for it, and to be honest it is so big it's going to be awkward to quilt.  I'm also not settled on a quilting pattern yet.  As I don't have any recipient in mind for it yet, it's gone to the bottom of the list.

Tribute Star - it is quilted but not bound, so not finished yet.  I had a lot of trouble finding a suitable binding, and only a couple of days ago found something that matches and compliments the quilt at Quilters Harvest in Warracknabeal.  It's cut up and ready to sew together and onto the quilt. 

Scrappy Tripalong Quilt - Finished!  So fabulously scrappy and gorgeous.  It's on my bed and as it's so big and has wool wadding it is lovely and warm.

Street Grids Quilt - Finished!  I really love this quilt.  Blogged here, with lots of photos. 

Triangular - Finished!  Gifted to my daughter's gorgeous friend Sophie.  Indy tells me Sophie is using it on her bed as she really feels the cold in Melbourne.  Blogged here.

Quilt of a Feather - Finished, and been to Melbourne to the Victorian Quilters Showcase.  I only blogged about it today, here.

Catvent quilt - not touched.  I've cut out about 8 cats but that's as far as it's got.  I'm thinking about making up fewer cat blocks than the original quilt, and laying it out differently, I need to get it completed.

Trail Markers Quilt - top is finished but not quilted yet.  I enjoyed making this quilt top so much, and am looking forward to finishing it.

Madeline - haven't touched this one, apart from making a backing for it.  It won't take long as it's only a small wallhanging but it didn't get even basted.

So only four out of nine completed.  I did get a few other things finished but unfortunately they weren't on the list at the start of the quarter.  I'm still pretty pleased though, finishing four quilts in three months is quite a good achievement really, although I would have liked to finish another couple of my projects.  Thanks again Katy for keeping us all focused and for the great tutorials.

Finish Along 2014

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Victorian Quilters Showcase

Last week was the Victorian Quilters Guild's annual Showcase event.  Last year a group of Horsham quilters, including myself, had quilts displayed at Showcase as a teaser for the new Modern Quilts section which they had decided to create for judging in 2014.  A few of us decided to enter quilts for judging at this year's show, as a show of support for the new section. I've never entered a quilt before, but really wanted to join with my friends to help promote Modern Quilts.

So here is my version of Anna Marie Horner's free pattern Feather Bed

Yes, that is a blue ribbon!  I won first place in the Modern Quilts section. 

I was so thrilled and excited to win.  I attended the presentation with my Mum and sister, we actually stayed in Melbourne and had a lovely time eating out and celebrating.

I won a lovely SewEzi table from Patchwork Plus.  They manufacture an insert for your own sewing machine so that the machine sits flat to the table, making quilting so much easier.  I am so looking forward to my table arriving, it is going to make so much different to my quilting.
A close up,  isn't the ribbon beautiful? 
Me with my quilt, I was smiling all day.
I don't think you can post too many photos when something as unexpected and wonderful as this happens.  Thanks to the Victorian Quilter's Guild, the judges and to Patchwork Plus.  I'm still so happy and grateful to have won when the section included some really fabulous quilts.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Curio Hills

Last weekend my daughter came home for a couple of days for Mother's Day.  We had a lovely time, making nice meals together and chatting. On Mother's Day morning we participated in the Mother's Day Classic, we did the 4 km walk together, in our town the walk is along our river and it was really gorgeous.  We went out for morning tea with some other family, including my mother, and then Indy left to go back to Melbourne. 

Sometimes I can find myself getting a bit lonely when she first leaves after a weekend together, so I threw myself into some 'selfish sewing' just for me.  I finished this quilt top which I'd started at our little sewing retreat at Bordertown a few weeks ago.
The pattern is from a recent copy of Quilty magazine.  It's a great beginners quilting magazine, I really like some of the very simple patterns they have, which are very suitable for beginners.  Another nice extra they offer is that you can mail order kits to make some of their quilts.
 I modified the pattern Trail Marker by Ashley Newcomb, who writes the blog Film in the Fridge .
The background is a cream Spotlight shot cotton, it's so soft and lovely warm colour.  For the hills I used a layer cake of Basic Grey's Curio.  It's an old line which I've been waiting for the perfect project to use.  All the hills are improv pieced, so are different sizes and the sides are different angles.  Alot of fun to sew up, although this method does waste alot of material.  I had to go and buy more background to finish the quilt top.
I offset each row so that the hills weren't directly underneath each other, by adding various lengths of the background fabric to the beginning and end of each row.  I also added a strip of background to the top and bottom of the quilt so that the hills appear to 'float' in the quilt.   
I only cut two hills from each piece of fabric in the layer cake, so I have quite a pile of scraps left over.  I'm hoping I can use them to make something, although of course some of them are odd shapes.  I'm not the only quilter who hangs onto piles of scraps because they are too pretty to throw out I guess!

Friday, May 2, 2014

Street Grids & Jewelled Triangles Quilts Ticked

I'm slowly making my way through my Finish Along list for this quarter, I am so easily distracted that a couple of new projects have caught my eye and my rotary cutter but I guess as long as I am achieving something that is OK.

First up, I managed to get the binding on a couple of the quilts on my list.

I took heaps of pics of my Street Grids quilt, I'm so proud of it.  I am not a 'perfect point' kind of a quilter, but I took my time, re-sewed where necessary and made a success of this quilt.  I love the colours and the linen background.  Even the quilting went well.

Laid out on my bed, it's lap quilt size at 52" square.  Aren't the colours lovely?  The inside photos are a bit dull I'm afraid, but I think you can see my quilting quite well in some of them.


Thought I'd better make a collage as I took so many photos!  The fabrics were based on 3 different Wickerweave textured solids that I bought from Pink Castle Fabrics some time ago.  They have a very faint wicker design printed onto them in a tone on tone pattern.  Lovely to use, and I found them very easy to match up with other fabric in my stash.  I also used some Architextures and some random fabrics including a Kei Honeycomb and a Zen Chic Comma print.  The batting is a very thin So Soft blend, and combined with the Spotlight Voile I used for a backing it is a soft, buttery light quilt.  Lovely for summer evenings I hope.  People have asked me if voile stands up to everyday use as a quilt backing - I haven't had trouble with it but I also don't have young kids around here or dogs so my quilts don't get heaps of laundering.  Because this quilt has a white background it will also be kept away from my cats, as one of them especially sheds heaps of fur. 


Arranged on my great grandmother's wicker chair.  Quilts always look so good draped over it.  The pattern is from Art Gallery Fabrics and is called Street Grid and is a free download on their website.


One more picture.  I do love a folded up quilt picture, it's like underlining that the quilt is finished.

From photo overload, to a one off!  I finished this Jewelled Triangles quilt while Indy was home from Uni.  We had decided to gift this quilt to her friend Sophie and so I was on a mission to get the binding finished, nothing like a gifting deadline to get the needle going.  I finished it the night before we left to take Indy back, so this photo was taken quickly before we left.  Indy was nagging at me to be quick, her arms were aching, she was cold.  So not a great photo.  The colours are much richer than this picture shows, and really it's hard to see the binding, but at least you can see that it's there.  It's a simple design, so really it's mostly about the colours.  Lots of purple, some very dark blue and pops of red, and some print fabrics mostly from Tula Pink's Birds and the Bees and Zen Chic's Juggling Summer

The handful of red triangles scattered across the quilt really lift it.  Sophie feels the cold heaps, so we are hoping this will keep her warm.  It's got a wool batting and I quilted it with a very large stipple so it is lovely and soft and warm.  I hope she likes it.

So with two items ticked off my FAL list (actually it's 3 but the third is a secret project, just for a few weeks) of course my mind turned to items not on the list.   My FAL list for quarter 2 is here.


I've decided to make a little Perfect Zip Bag, from Elizabeth Hartmann's pattern.  If you are ever in doubt about buying one of her patterns, just buy it, they are so reliable.  I love her blog Oh, Fransson! and can't wait for her new book.  So my pieces are cut, and I hope to finish it tonight.  Then I don't feel so bad about jumping off my list for a while.  Although I have been eyeing a couple of bigger bag patterns.  Surely just one wouldn't hurt?

Monday, April 14, 2014

Finish Along 2nd Quarter

Phew I'm running towards the cut off time but here are my projects for Katy at The Littlest Thistle's Finish Along Quarter 2.

Finish Along 2014
The first three projects are carried over from 1st quarter

Open Your Windows quilt top, I want to get this one quilted, bound and ready to use this winter.  I'm putting it on the list but it's probably an outside chance at this stage as a few of my other projects have definite deadlines.

Vintage Tribute Star, pinned and ready to be quilted.  It's a small quilt so really shouldn't take long, I'm looking forward to seeing it completed.

Scrappy Tripalong, just needs binding.  I know quilters who love binding, seeing it as a quick last step in the making of a quilt and eagerly getting stuck into it.  I wish I was the same!  I probably shouldn't even include quilts that need binding in my FAL list, but for me it is such a big, looming process that I need some incentive to get them done.

Street Grids, my variation of a free pattern from the Art Gallery Fabrics website.  Just needs binding and it's finished.

Triangular, a simple quilt I made using all triangles.  I quilted it a while ago but wasn't really happy with the quilting.  After putting it away for a few months I got it out the other day and have decided I can definitely live with it (and really don't want to pull all the quilting out!).  I do have another 15 quilt tops waiting to be quilted so it seems silly to look for extra quilting work.  Umm, just needs binding.  Are we all seeing a pattern here?

Feather Bed, my version of Anna Marie Horner's famous free pattern. I need a bit more of the background fabric which I've ordered, hoping it will be here before Good Friday so I can get the quilt top finished and pin it at my quilting group sewing day this Sunday.  I've got a deadline for this one, May 1st, and I'm starting to get a bit nervous about messing up the quilting.

Catvent quilt, this pile of fabric is being slowly cut into the 25 different cats that make up Elizabeth Hartmann's adorable pattern.   The cutting is taking a long time!  This is a surprise for one of my co-workers.


Trail Marker, a simple improv style quilt made up of random size triangles.  This quilt is from a pattern in Quilty magazine by Ashley Newcomb of Film in the Fridge.  I have to admit that I started this project late one night at a quilting retreat a few weeks ago and it took me a nearly the whole evening to work out how to piece them.  I felt like such a goose, but now that I've worked it out I'm loving putting them together. I've used a layer cake of Curio by Basic Grey which I've had stashed for a long time waiting for the right pattern to land in my lap. 

Madeline, another Schnibble made with my friend Chris.  We've finished the quilt tops and are ready to quilt.  It's a small wallhanging so not a big finish, but I'm looking forward to seeing it on the wall.  It's our third Schnibble, we are thinking about making a couple of  Camille Roskelly's cute Thimbleblossoms miniatures next. 

That's my aims for quarter 2!  I think I am being a bit ambitious, but hey why not take the bull by the horns?  Thanks again Katy for getting me motivated.  Now maybe I should start with some binding.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Finish Along 1st Quarter Achievements

I'm playing along with Katy at The Littlest Thistle's Finish Along.  For quite a few weeks the end of the first quarter's Finish Along seemed ages away, then all of a sudden it was here!

Finish Along 2014

I've popped my successful projects on Flickr so that they have one entry each and I'm summarising on my blog.  Hopefully I'll get all this right, this is my first time playing along!  My original list of 9 projects was here.

Let's go with my wrap up!

 1. Bag for Evie - completed and given to a happy niece!  I finished this pretty quickly back in January, and there's more pics on this blogpost.

2. Shirt for me - made and I'm pretty happy with it.  My choice of fabric wasn't really clever, I used a voile which doesn't have any ease at all.  It's a little tight across the upper arms, I've washed it hoping that it might loosen it a bit and haven't actually tried it on again yet. The pattern is a Style Arc tunic, the Michelle. 

3.  Dress for my daughter - made and given to her, and here's a pretty rushed photo of it that she sent me tonight when I realised I didn't have one.  It's a Lisette Portfolio dress, made with Denyse Schmidt dress fabric from Spotlight.  
4. Open Your Windows quilt - I didn't get this completed.  I've got the blocks together into a flimsy, but it's not quilted and I can't see it getting finished for a while yet and some other quilts have taken priority.

5. Vintage Tribute Star - I didn't get this done either, it's pinned but I had heaps of indecision about a quilting pattern and didn't make a start.  I've got a plan for it now, and as it's only a small quilt it won't take long to quilt, maybe in the next quarter!

 6. Boy's charity quilt - quilted, bound and ready to be donated to Vicquilters for their Very Snuggly Quilts project.  My quilting group make a couple of quilts a year to donate to teenage boys through to project.  I helped with the piecing and quilted this one, the Batman fabric is fun!

 7. Schnibbles Spot wallhanging - completed and ready to go on the wall once I've found the dowel for it.  I'm so pleased with this sweet little quilt, I found it quite trying to get all the sashing nicely lined up and I'm so happy that it looks effective.  The quilting is just a random meander.
8. Linen bag - made and used, although I'm not terribly happy with it.  I decided to make a 'foldover' bag but I find it annoying to use as when it's straightened out it's very deep to put my hand into and find stuff.  It is completed though!
 9. Scrappy tripalong - although I did get the binding machine stitched on it isn't hand sewn down yet.  Another one for next quarter's list.

I've loved joining in this quarter and I'm looking forward to next quarter.  I'm pleased with what I've achieved, even though I didn't get everything done.  Hopefully I'll remember to take photos of projects as I finish them, as quite a few of these I've taken tonight so I could include them in the FAL.  Thanks Katy for all your hard work to keep us motivated.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Lynn's Crosses

The quilting group that I belong to are making some quilts to donate to a charity auction later in the year to raise funds for our local Hospice.  A member of our group passed away a couple of years ago after a long battle with cancer, and the idea grew after her husband decided to donate her stash and unfinished projects to our group in order for us to finish some quilts and donate them on.  We've had other donations since then, and many of us have been very busy! 

I decided to make a quilt from my stash with our dear friend in mind.  She was a very spiritual person and so the idea of some sort of cross design seemed obvious.  I've been a bit worried that people at the auction would only be interested in traditional quilts, so I took a trip to the shops to have a look at colours in homewares, in an effort to make something saleable.  I decided on pink, yellow and grey on various off white backgrounds. 

So I've been cutting, sewing, pressing and trimming.  

I don't always press seams open but decided that it would help the quilt top lie flatter, especially as I used a mix of cottons and linen/cotton mixes for the backgrounds.

A few of my blocks.  I love that cloud print!  It's from Bark and Branch by Eloise Renouf for Cloud 9. I used quite a mix of prints from my stash, especially quite a few pink Valori Wells prints from her Wrenly line.  I'd been saving them for a special quilt.  I can't think of any quilt more special than this one, a memorial to my dear friend Lynn.