Thursday, November 3, 2011

WIP it up

I'm not great at WIP posts.  I love to show a finished project, and I actually rarely take photos of anything I make before it's finished.  I'm trying to change all that...

One thing I've really noticed about my making is that I tend to make about 4 or 5 quilt tops, then quilt about 4 or 5 quilt tops.  I rarely make a quilt all the way through without taking time out to at least start another quilt  along the way.  But once I'm on a roll with the quilting process, I finish up a few at once.

I'm in a quilting phase at the moment.  I have no idea why.  Every year I participate in our local crafty market stall, coming up on the first weekend in December, and I really need to get my Christmas ornament sewing going.  But I feel like quilting!  I'm trying to do a bit of the ornament sewing, then let myself do some quilting, to try and keep it all together.  Hmmm.  I've actually nearly finished up all the quilt tops lying around here (we'll ignore a couple of very old quilt tops hanging in the wardrobe).

So here are some pictures!

This is a wonky stacked coins design that I've made using lots of reds and a pop of yellow here and there on a deep blue background.  You can see that I've stippled it using a matching blue thread.  This picture shows my quilting set up, I use a Horn sewing cabinet with my machine on it, and my dining table behind the cabinet and an ironing board set up to my left lowered to the same height as the cabinet.  This way the whole quilt is supported as I quilt.  I am no expert quilter, but I find that ensuring that the weight of the quilt (especially when it is full of pins and quite heavy) does not drag over the edge of the table really helps keep my quilting even.

You get an idea of the mix of fabrics I've used for the 'coins',  these few include Aneela Hooey's 'Sherbet Pips', Denyse Schmidt's 'Picnic and Fairgrounds', Laurie Wisbrun's 'Tufted Tweets', Kei 'Honeycomb' and some 'Dr Suess'.  I must admit, I am a fabric geek and love studying up on ranges as they come out!

I've called this one 'Wonky Coins From My Stash'.  I love thinking up names for my quilts, and try to use either the pattern name or names of the fabric ranges I've used (or sometimes both!) in the name.  I used  the 'Wonky Stacked Coins' pattern from 'Block Party', a book I recommend for anyone interested in modern quilting.  It's got lots of gorgeous quilt patterns in it, and is written around a 12 month virtual quilting bee so is a really interesting read too.  

This next quilt is taking quite some time to finish.  It's made using a layer cake of Sandy Gervais' 'Giddy'.  Although I am really not a hearts and flowers girl, I adore her Valentine's ranges, they are so much fun and cute without being overly sweet.  Red and pink are a huge favorite colour combination for me too.  The pattern is by Red Pepper Quilts and is called 'Take One'.  The quilt top was pretty quick to put together, and I quilted each end with a pebble design.  

I decided to use straight line quilting a quarter of an inch either side of some of the rows of squares (similar to the type of straight line quilting that Rita uses herself) but then I discovered that my blocks were slightly uneven, which made the quilting a mess.  That didn't stop me, I quilted the whole quilt and then decided it looked awful.  So I'm ripping it out row by row and stippling it.  That's also why it's already got the binding on it.  Slow going, but I'm halfway there now and it looks so much better.  

I'm calling this one 'Take One Giddy Quilt'.  

I used Kate Conklin's 'Through the Trees' pattern to make this third quilt.  It's a free pattern available on Chasing Cotton's blog.  It's a fantastic quick and easy pattern, using the stack and slash method and I had a great time picking fabrics and making it up.  I've used a variation on the classic stipple to quilt it, it's sort of a 'cloud' pattern.  I'll try and get a better photo of the quilting once I've bound it.  

 I've used fabric from my stash here too, Joel Dewberry's 'Modern Meadow', Denyse Schmidt's 'Hope Valley', Rosemary Lanvin's 'Spa', Victoria & Albert Museum's 'Grand Tour' (by David Textiles), Lizzie House's 'Castle Peeps' and the multi-coloured floral print on the cream background is from Sanae's 'Arcadia'.  Told you I was a fabric geek!

The 'Arcadia' print was the starting point to choose fabrics for this quilt.  I picked out the brown, turquoise and orange from it, and came up with this cosy mix.  The cream is a Spotlight Prima fabric.

I'm still thinking about binding.  I think a brown would be nice, to frame it all, or the turquoise, although I suspect this would be much harder to match.  I don't have enough of any of the fabrics I've used left to use as binding.  Anyway I generally prefer to use something I haven't used in the quilt.  I'm also stumped for a name for this one.

It's a good feeling to be finishing off a few quilts, however now I really need to get moving on making some things for my market stall!