Sunday, August 21, 2011

Quilt for a friend

Early this year, my daughter was returning home via Brisbane then Melbourne from a holiday with her father's family in England when flooding hit our area. There was no way of getting her from Melbourne to here as all the roads were cut by water. My gorgeous friend in Melbourne rescued her, collecting her from the airport, giving her a place to stay and a hot meal or two, and then getting her to the train the next day once they started running again.

I wanted to do something special for her so I made this quilt. I called it 'Betty's Split Hourglass'. I bought the fat eighth pack of Betty Dear (by Darlene Zimmerman for Robert Kaufman - I tried to link to it but they don't have the collection up on their website any more) ages ago - it's really not my usual fancy but I just fell in love with it. When it arrived I realised I didn't have a thing that went with it, and so I'd have to use it as a bundle. It sat and waited for inspiration to strike for some time. I knew it would look beautiful in my friend's home, she has a mix of colourful vintage going on that is quite fabulous. I paired the prints with Vanilla Emma Louise. The split hourglass block seemed to 'fit' the vintage feel of the 'Betty Dear'.

I free motion quilted it by stippling it, and added some straight lines around the border which I think really frames it. I don't often put borders on quilts but I think this quilt needed it. I pieced together scraps of the 'Betty Dear' to make scrappy binding.

I gave it to my friend on a trip to Melbourne a few weeks ago, and she loves it!

Sunday, August 14, 2011


I thought I'd start my online diary by explaining the story behind the quilt I've used as my background. My daughter is in her first year of university, meaning that she has left our country home to go and live in the city 200 miles away to study. So I am living alone - I really miss her soooo much, and it's taken some adjusting too. For Mother's Day, she gave me three fat quarters of the beautiful Far Far Away II fabric by Heather Ross.

I decided straight away that everything I was doing was going on hold whilst I immediately made them up into a quilt, with some of my other most favourite fabrics. I cut random lengths of fabric into either 3" or 6" high pieces and sewed them together like a mad woman, then sewed these rows together to make this quilt. I used random, crooked straight line quilting and then bound it with Kei Honeycomb dots. A quick run through the washing machine and it was made within three weeks, which is definately a record for me!

This quilt is really special to me. It meant so much to me that my teenage daughter chose fabrics she thought I would love (which I do!). Setting out to make a snuggly quilt to use on the couch just for me was also a whole lot of fun! And it helped me to realise that whilst I miss her, I'm so proud of her and pleased that she is starting to make her own way in the world. And me, well, I'm learning to enjoy my freedom and expanding my own horizons. I've wanted to start a blog for a while now, so this will be a great place to record my adventures as a sewist!