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Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Reverse Applique finished, Lone Star progress, City and Guilds?

The reverse applique project from Jenny Lester's workshop for Gwent Quilters turned out to be a terrific match for my Dad's dining room so he now has a unique mat for the dining suite that he loves

and it matches his chairs a treat!

The lone star has been fun to do and rewarding so far. Choosing the colours was a challenge and I'm really pleased how they'e come together. I did the first Y seam perfectly - in the wrong place. This shows where I went wrong and is an impression of is how it will look eventually.

Next are decisions re the border, probably multi coloured strips. Inevitably there's not a lot of one colour, the green, left....Originally I did want to do flying geese as seen on an exhibit at Malvern, but don't want to detract from the impact of the stunning centre.

I was so inspired by the exhibiton of City and Guilds Patchwork students at Brynglas House in Newport, that I'm considering doing the course for the next 3/4 years, Fiona has been encouraging and reassuring me. Does anyone have any advice on this?

Friday, 8 June 2012

An 'Owling Success

Faced with the challenge of producing quick, easy, inexpensive items to be sold for next to nothing at the Jubilee fete, I used the Malvern Show workshop by Sadie Yeomans as inspiration to make soft owls.As well as being high on the aaah factor, being stuffed with sheepskin off-cuts they could do pincushion duty.

Friends all liked them, the punters did too and they all sold.
So camera shy Rose and I made 2 more today, having had our nails done a suitably toning shade!  Thank you very much Sadie

I really must try and hold onto one for me!

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Jenny Lester's Reverse Applique Worshop

This lovely workshop at Gwent Quilters was just right, it taught me a great new technique and wasn't too tricky or time consuming to finish.
Two layers bonded and cut with a turquoise under layer, partly folded back

The full pattern folded in position before stitching down the layers
Stitched and pinned into approximate shape - it will be round

The colours are perfect in my Dad's dining room so it will end up as a round mat in the centre of his dining table. The stitching isn't perfect so don't enlarge it too far. After all the first time is only a practice!

Thanks Jenny

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Job done - Dad's second quilt a sucess

Despite the long silence I have been quilting as well as Toastmastering.

My Dad's second quilt is finished and he LOVES it  I'm pleased too

As the design looks rather like floor tiles, perhaps it's appropriate I've taken the photo in my tiled hall. The best spot it seems because from up a few stairs I can get a good overview.

At last the size is right, at 53" square it seems to do the job, but he still prefers his rug and likes to look at it instead! As they say, there's no accounting for folk.

For the first time I 'mastered' the lettering function on my new Bernina for the label. It took forever but was eventually effective if not totally successful. Lots to learn when I finally manage to get on a course to learn the finer points of the Bernina Aurora 430
The first quilt was so much more work but "too small and stiff". I'm still very pleased with it, have brought it home to think about making it larger and currently want to leave as it is.

Saturday, 25 February 2012

Not quite Matisse

Inspired by the great painter, who cut and stuck shapes out of paper after he was unable to manage a brush, today was a Bondaweb Scrap Bash. Many lessons learned about how not to manage this difficult stuff and I can't say I'm totally thrilled with the outcome.I blame it partly on the age of the bondaweb. The newer stuff had totally disappeared.

Rainbow was the concept - I think a drawer will be the destination for a while but perhaps there is potential a long way down the line. Stitched over the joins and folded in half as a little bag? I don't suppose Matisse got it right first time!

New multicoloured sparkly buttons on my coat has been the other needle activity in the last 6 weeks - mostly sewn on by wonderful friends. Very pleased with the result - go to Claire Grove Buttons in Cardiff's Royal Arcade for the best ever selection, beads too.
Close Up

Am expecting to sew again relatively soon, plaster comes off on Tuesday so maybe in a couple of weeks. Getting behind the wheel of my car again will be equally wonderful

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Normal service will be resumed ...

Every picture tells a story and what is a blog without a picture?would you believe two quilters?
Indeed what is a would be quilter without a right hand? a very slow typist, that's what. As my sewing machine collects dust, I am contemplating new projects such as a something totally abstract using already cut scraps and eventually a  pouffe with hand sewn hexagons - one day! Hope to get going again in a month or so.
This is where I was with RJN Mark 2 before, looks good and masculine - for my Dad. 3 of 5 horizontal strips now joined. Matching the next level will be fun - one day ...

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Pinwheels go two ways

Arghhhh ! Now I see why it's not good to go on piercing till all hours when concentration starts to fade, but it's so addictive and the points were coming together so well - once I learnt about trimming the half square triangles to make them all identical.
Right good, left bad

Now I know there are left pinwheels and right
pinwheels - yes I am a beginner.

Had made slightly more of the right hand type in photo so am going for them.

 Fortunately I had changed colour plans in midstream so have spare half square triangles for the 3 'different' ones which will become something else one day. 

Quarter layout

 This is a quarter of the overall layout - with correct pinwheels of  course! Apart from the yellow, it's all  from Carolina Row left over scraps so not bad recycling.

The  yellow was left over from Calabash, spot the 'wrong' one.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Have I invented a new block?

Highly unlikely I know but while thinking of a centre for the Carolina Row follow up quilt which I call RJN (my Dad's initials) Mark 2,  I came up with this. First drew it in rough, then made it work in fabric with two cutting size errors for the three pieces involved. Must try harder. Still pleased with the outcome though.

If it is new it will be the called the Newport block, his surname and where I live.

Is this the new Newport block?
Colours look foul as I always seem to photograph at night and my flash washes them out altogether. Suffice to say centre is soft yellow and brown, pale blue inner triangles and dark blue outers. It all works with the master plan.
Rest of the quilt is going really well. Each 10" square will consist of four half triangle squares. 14 of the 20 10 inchers needed are at the four stage. Next I decide in which order to arrange those half triangle squares and there are a million possibilities. Need a design wall.
Am really enjoying designing the quilt myself depending in materials available = left overs,  rather than following a book pattern even if it does make my head hurt all too often.Progress is quite fast, less than a week so far, very satisfying.
Off to Bath tomorrow look for brushed cotton backing, apparently known as flannel. Always wondered what that was. A Thermal Spa treat is on the agenda too.

Monday, 2 January 2012

T's progress and a diversion to Carolina

Black and white Tessellating T's going well now I've checked and adjusted seam allowances and cut the correct size large squares. Yes I know that I am a complete dumbo. 6 blocks are made and 4 more all ready to sew; also picked up a few more fabrics in that Hereford shop's sale so I definitely have enough for there to be plenty of variety
They are black and white but look yellow because of artificial light. Tessellations show up well


However, there has been a change of priorities. My Dad says his Carolina Houses lap quilt is a bit stiff and does not drape round him as well as a rug to keep his legs and knees warm. Well we can't have that so that's a lesson learnt and back to the drawing board. It still looks great on the sofa in his study. So far I've made 5 x 4 piece blocks that will be  either a triangle in a square or a pin wheel. These are lovely and quick after the Tessellating T's.

Both have their merits; difficult choice

Not having any quilt design software, I had a lot of fun designing it on squared paper with coloured pencils very early on New Year's Day. So far it looks as if it will be a sort of medallion design with 5x5 10" blocks using all the spare Carolina fabric and a couple of others of similar shades. Possibly borders in between the different sections to link the colours bearing in mind I don't have enough of everything. I will try to resist, but may need to give in and get more. The challenge all the way through is that he is red green colour blind.Lots of blues and browns so far.


This is where I am now, but it could all change.

 The idea of a large proper medallion quilt as a long term project is really growing on me. I have someone in mind ...

Bought a lovely blue and gold backing fabric on Saturday but am now wondering if brushed cotton might make it more serviceable for his purposes = warm and drapey. Does anyone have any experience of using this?  I was thinking it might be harder to machine quilt because it may slide less well. As he is 92 and not too well I don't intend to spend months hand quilting.

Dragged myself out today, despite not too much sleep and enjoyed a 9 mile walk from Monmouth which was mercifully dry, if dull, from above but very muddy underfoot. Lovely to see all my Rambler friends and a satisfying New Year's day effort. Best of all, the rain started just as I got in the car to drive home!