Monday, 14 July 2014

Hopes and dreams....

.....for lots of finishes in Q3.

Let's just gloss over the fact that I didn't have an awful lot of finishes in Q2 and move right along, shall we?

1. Rachel's scrappy stars is making another appearance on the list.

This quilt is actually on her bed, binding on but quilting incomplete! I'm not sure what the quilt police would say about my flouting of the rules on this one.

I decided I wanted to FMQ stars in the negative spaces. I reasoned that as I had already done a straight line cross hatch through the stars it would be ok to bind it. And once it was bound it may as well live on the bed. I've FMQuilted a few stars already, I'm trying different designs to stretch myself a bit. Some designs are working better than others but overall I'm really pleased with this one.

2. Orange Peel applique blocks.

I've enjoyed the hand work on these, now to make them up into something, probably a cushion.

3. Ticker tape panel.

I only started this a couple of days ago, I was too tired to sew on Friday night but wanted to play with some fabric. I glued down these pieces (I've got a ziploc bag of trimmed scraps) and just went for it.

I've wanted to try this since I saw the lovely work in Sunday Morning Quilts. I decided to straight line quilt with two colours of variegated Aurifil thread, the lemon in one direction and the green in the other. This is destined to be another cushion, although I can see a whole quilt of these panels in my future. It's a lovely way of using up even teeny tiny pieces of fabric (less than one inch square) and makes you feel really virtuous ( to offset the guilt of buying more?).

4. Plus quilt

I've actually started cutting two quilts, with different size blocks. I'll go along with the smaller size first. I've cut 22 blocks so far and this is what they look like laid out;

I'm not in love with this yet, I think it needs to brew a little longer before I make a decision. I'll know I'll need more, so I'll keep adding to my bag'o'blocks.

5. Suburbs from a pattern by Alison of Cluck, Cluck Sew

I love these blocks but I'm only making sporadic progress.

I have cut about 15 blocks so far, but I think I might want to do something other than white for the background, so I'm stalled while I make my mind up.

6. Sewing pouch

This is the sewing pouch I made a few weeks ago for a friends birthday. I recreated one given to me as a gift 15 years ago. It's a really handy size and has been in almost daily use since.

I started cutting out a second one for myself, as mine is getting very grubby and worn, but never got round to finishing it. I'd really like to get this done as well as writing up cutting and stitching directions so I can repeat it in the future without having to work it out again from scratch.

7. Strippy quilt.

Another project inspired by a quilt in Sunday Morning Quilts by Amanda Jean Nyberg and Cheryl Arkison. I have no expectation of getting this finished anytime soon, as this is my 'leader and ender' project. I've got another ziploc holding one and half inch strips, which I sort into 'nearly the same length' and piece together.

I've got at least four other projects that I could list, and any one of them may be finished first, depending on how the mood takes me, but this is what I want to work on now.

It'll be interesting to look back on this quarters list in 3 months and see what I completed. The sewing pouch I made wasn't even an idea when I wrote my Q2 list ! I'm sure we all do that.

Here's to a stitchy summer, happy sewing everyone,

Tracy x

Finish Along 2014

















Saturday, 5 July 2014

Circle of Geese mini quilt, a finish.

I'm pleased to have finished this little quilt, it crosses off a couple of things I had wanted to try.

Firstly, after seeing so many lovely 'circles' on blogs and IG ( the prolific and talented Jeliquilts is a particular inspiration) I jumped in with no pattern or plan, other than that it would be a rainbow.

Needless to say, there were many hiccups along the way, the nest of seams in the centre being one.

There was no way to make it lie flat, or any hope of quilting through that volcano-like protrusion, so the only option was to unpick a section..

...and cut out the offending seams

Then all I had to do was replace four pieces to fill the centre and 'voila' from 16 seams to 4 !

This is why patterns are a good idea. We fool ourselves into thinking 'that looks easy, I don't need to buy a pattern'. But that's because we haven't gone through the whole process of calculating fabric yardage, what size and shape to cut the pieces, order of construction, when to press, which side to press too (sometimes this really matters), etc, etc. If writing patterns were easy, we'd all be doing it.


Most patterns for this type of precision piecing tend to be paper pieced. I'm not a fan of paper piecing myself which is probably another reason I just jumped in. If you are, then the aforementioned Jeliquilts has a few, including some insanely small pincushion sized circles!!

Although I have to say, I didn't expect this to be straightforward, sometimes I just like the challenge of attempting something without knowing how I'm going to do it. I always learn something from the process.

I had intended to densely FMQ with small spirals in the negative space, to make the geese pop out from the background. But after I'd added the border I felt I wanted to accentuated the 'motion' of the geese, so one large spiral seemed the way to go.

I used a wine glass as a Hera marker to press a circle into the centre. I then drew a spriral from the center out to the indentation. From that point I could just use the edge of my walking foot and follow the previous quilting line. It worked a treat. I started at a glacial pace in the centre with short stitches and as the spiral opened out I lengthened the stitches and went a little more quickly.

Initially I was going to make this into a cushion but my husband and daughter have had enough of my cushions for a while. So with the hope of one day having a dedicated sewing room I have made this into a mini to hang on the wall.

Quilt; Circle of Geese Mini. Finished at 18 inches square.

I'm happy to tick this off my Q2 finish-along list :0)

Linking up with our host for the FAL, Katie at The Littlest Thistle

Finish Along 2014