Friday, 25 April 2014

Spring blossom and Buttercup

The time has flown by  since I last posted and I have been busy, but do not have much sewing completed or fit to be shown.  The weather has been beautiful and the garden has taken priority, plus museum visits and family commitments over the Easter holidays.  Younger son now back to school and a degree of order restored, so I hope to sew, and post, more regularly.

The photo below is of plum blossom, now over, but hopefully the bees have done their work and we will have a fine crop of plums in August.


My one finish has been the Fig Tree Double Irish Chain quilt which I last posted about here. Simple cross hatching with off-white thread, and a scrappy, mostly pink, binding.  The range was called Buttercup and the backing is Whimsy, also by Fig Tree.

The quilt finished at 70" square; the small squares were cut 2 1/2" as I used a Jelly Roll and a Layer Cake.  I added a few soft tone-on-tones and pastel checks from my stash to increase the variety of patterns and textures: even the 40 fabrics in a fabric line don't seem enough for a scrap quilt!

Apart from this finish, I have managed to progress the Strips that Sizzle top so that it is now ready for basting and quilting: I have chosen variegated threads from Guterman in pink and aqua.  As it is not too large a quilt I quite fancy having a go at spiral quilting but I don't know if I have the nerve....  Next post will reveal all!

Writing this blog has encouraged me to dig deep into the shameful cupboard of uncompleted items and to see what I can do to finish them - I recall there was a quilting book called: Out of the Cupboard and Onto the Bed.  I always thought it was an excellent title.

Well, this UFO won't cover the bed, but it might get finished now it has seen the light of day: I found a small bag of Broken Dishes blocks made from the offcut triangles from a Spools quilt.  I hope to show you more next post.

Final photo - this wild flower is unromantically called Cow Parsley but I prefer the less common name, Queen Anne's Lace.  It is looking lovely at the moment.  Enjoy the Spring wherever you are, and any Spring cleaning of cupboards you may feel inspired to do!

I am linking to Crazy Mom Quilts today - it's great to have Amandajean back blogging and inspiring us with her lovely quilts.

Thursday, 3 April 2014

Scrappy Strippy Quilt

As you know, I love scrap quilts, and I love even more using up fabrics I have had for a while.  How much more must I love a quilt recipe which also uses up the long strips of wadding/batting which you invariably have left over when laying out other quilts?  You know the strips I mean, too narrow to be used for bags or baby quilts, even table runners, or anything but the smallest purses or mug rugs.

So when a friend gave me the pattern, more an outline of what to do really, I started cutting my scraps of fabric and wadding into 4 1/2" strips and hoarding them - in an organised and purposeful way, you understand?  Back in April I had a piecing frenzy, and in the process bust my walking foot (as mentioned a while ago), so the shine went off this project rather and I put it to one side.

A new walking foot, and subsequently a new sewing machine, came to pass, and I finished off quite a few other quilts over the intervening months.  But slowly this project worked its way back to the top of the pile, literally, and I decided to finish it.  Finishing involved not much more than quilting it with variegated Guterman thread in long lines parallel to the seam lines, and adding a scrappy binding: I didn't mark the quilting lines but 'eyeballed' them, as I think the 'freehand with a slight wobble' look is more relaxed and appropriate to this particular quilt.

In fact, I am really pleased with the texture the ribbed lines give, and I have started liking this quilt again, after definitely falling out of love with it last year.  It is not perfect by any means, and the fabrics are maybe a little old-fashioned now in colour palette and style, including many Debbie Mumm novelties, but I would like it to go to a good home.  I hope it might appeal to a child and for this reason I am planning to donate it to Siblings Together, a charity I first heard of on Lynne Goldsworthy's great blog, to which I am linking today.

I have to do a bit more research about the charity before I can grab the quilt ambassador button, but my intention is to make another quilt by this method (tweaked a bit to avoid my mistakes!) very soon, and then I will post a tutorial and some more information.

For now, however, enjoy making your quilts, whoever they are for.