Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Some Finishes!

Hello there! Well, that week and a half pretty much whizzed past, didn't it?! Littlest boy is on a phased introduction period at school (they manage to drag it out for 5wks for maximum annoyance!) and I hadn't quite realised just how exhausting doing three school runs a day would be!


Anyhoo, I've been working on some finishes! First up, was my knotted sampler from Thomas Knauer's class at FQR. It was only waiting on some binding and after a bit of a dive through my stash I decided that I should go colourful all the way and that Summersville would be perfect. It will look lovely on the wall I think!


Next up was using the scraps from the Parquet Quilt that I made for Simply Solids. When cutting the blocks I'd ended up with some small leftover strips which I just couldn't bear to part with. So, they were sewn together into a panel and then promptly set aside for the rest of the summer!  Over the weekend inspiration finally hit! I'd been admiring Kerry's dumpling pouch at retreat and after printing out the pattern I discovered that the panel was the perfect size! 

Doesn't it look cute? They're a little fiddly on the zipper and the inside binding, but it's definitely worth it, and will get easier with each make I reckon. And a nice, quick project too which is always a bonus!

I'll be back soon......it was my birthday over the weekend and I've got something very special to show you!

Sx

Todays sky ● overcast and grey but still warm!

Friday, 5 September 2014

Mini Quilt swap and catching up!

Wow - where did those last few weeks go?! There's been so much time spent occupying children and some secret sewing that I've not really had much time to blog. School started back this week though so hopefully things will return back to normal......I was writing my to-do lists yesterday and realised that I hadn't told you all about the Schnitzel & Boo Mini quilt swap that I took part in back in July (sooooo long ago - sorry!) but it was so much fun that I just neeeeeed to, so here goes!


For my partner I made a scrappy churn dash mini - this was a lot inspired by Kerry's quilt but I changed the background to 4" squares (so double the size of the scraps used in the churndash) so that it wasn't a direct copy which led to some playing around with how to inset the outside churndash triangles into the backgound squares. I think it worked out quite well in the end! There was some kantha stitching to outline the churndash and some free-motion loop-de-loops in the low volume background and it was all finished.



I'd mainly used Denyse Schmidt with a little bit of Liberty and Henna thrown in which I just couldn't bear to waste so I used the HST off-cuts to make a little coaster measuring around 6" with some more kantha stitching.....there's a bit of a theme developing here, isn't there?!


In return I recieved this lovely mini from Melissa (with some gorgeous goodies too!) which was the perfect colour scheme and now takes pride of place on my sewing room wall - I love the impact of doing two lines of stitching on top of each other in some places, it really makes it pop!

I had so much fun with this swap that I've signed up for the #IGminiswap - I have my partner so will have to do a bit of stalking now!

Have a great weekend,

S x

Todays sky ● overcast but warm!

Monday, 18 August 2014

Another Sew Together Bag

Before Retreat, I was lucky enough to be sent some Alison Glass Field Day for a project I was working on (more on that another day!). I had some of the panel print left and whilst pondering my need (yep, need!) for a Sew Together bag I realised it would be perfect for the exterior panel.


To add a bit of interest (and because I just don't trust fusible wadding!) I added three lines of 3-step zig-zag stitching either side of the panel print in a bright pink and the exterior was done.


For the inside I used a mix of Alison Glass sunprint for the pocket linings and fabrics from my Simply Solids stash club for the pocket exteriors. A little more Field Day for the binding and it was done.

As before, I finished all the binding by hand and then machine stitched the zipper tabs to the bag for added strength. I found that the easiest way to do this was to turn the bag almost inside out like so and pin/glue baste in position.........

I am so happy with how this came out - it's overly bright and a little bit bonkers but I love it and it holds so much stuff! It was finished in time for retreat and even a random lady on the train commented on it!!!!

I did make a few adjustments to the original pattern:

- Moved the exterior pocket fold line out by 1/4"
- Cut the binding at 2" and hand-finished it on both side seams and top zip
- Interfaced the zipper tabs

I love it so much I've even used a scotch-guard spray to stop it getting dirty! Have you ever used a scotch guard? It's fantastic for bags and really does help to protect them......I remember making my Liberty Lapin Noir and on it's first outing - which happened to be to a toddler group - a cup of juice got spilt all over it and I was able to just brush it off with no absorption. Magic I tell you!

Back soon,

Sx

Todays sky ● a mix of blue and sunshine and grey and rainy

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Parquet - a jelly roll quilt

Hellooo!!!! One of the things that I didn't mention about the fabulous weekend that was #FQR2014 was the handing over of all the Siblings Together Quilts on Saturday night. So many lovely quilts and such an amazing cause. 

As well as the Bee quilt I also handed over this jelly roll quilt, which I showed as a quilt top a little while ago

It's a pattern that I created designed to be quick and easy, showcase the fabrics and be as big as possible!!! It's made with a jelly roll of Comma that I'd won in the raffle at Retreat last year, paired with a dark grey blender, Kona Charcoal for the binding and IKEA Nummer fabric for the backing. It's a good sized quilt finishing at 56" x 70" and did I mention quick and easy to put together?! For quilting I kept it very simple going a 1/4" either side of each of the squares and even attempted machine binding using Lynne's fab tutorial, except that I attached the binding to the front and then machine-bound on the back..... It's more difficult to spot my slightly wavy lines on the dark blender fabric that way!
And if nothing else, this quilt makes a great cloak as modelled by my 5yr old!!!

Now you may remember that I made a second version of this for Justine & Lisa using a Chloe's Closet 1930s Playtime jelly roll and Kona White that got sent off to Trudi for some quilting magic. Doesn't it look amazing?!

And I'm really excited to let you know that if you'd like to make your own Parquet Quilt the pattern is now available as a free download from the Simply Solids website here. Or if you're at the Festival of Quilts then pop along to stand E16 to pick up a free copy of the pattern and have a look at the quilt in real life! 

I'd love to see if you make any quilts using this pattern, maybe you can use #parquetquilt if you post any photos to social media?

Have a great day,

Sx

Today's sky ● Grey, overcast and looking like rain for the whole day. Boo!

Monday, 4 August 2014

What a fabulous weekend #FQR2014 was!

Hello everybody! I can't believe it's been over a fortnight since retreat already, time really has flown!!! I came back very happy, very tired and smack bang into the summer holidays, a birthday party and a four day camping trip. It's been hectic!



So, Retreat!!! It was the best weekend: lots of fun meeting up with old and new friends, uninterrupted sewing time and learning lots of new skills. First up we received a fabulous goody bag filled with Aurifil, Moda Mini Charm Packs, Robert Kaufman, Makower, Soak, a voucher for Duckegg Threads and some fabulous notions from Korabond. Pretty good!

My first class was with Brioni where we were learning to do petals. I'd been debating what to do with my class samples and I decided early on that these blocks would be perfect for making a new sewing-machine cover (I had one of those soft ones with mine and it's pretty very tatty now and barely doing it's job). I've got Brioni's book and had always admired her petals quilt but having cut out my 32 petals I have even more respect for the quilt (and the knowledge that I will probably never make it, I don't think I have that much patience!!!!). And I even got to play with a new machine as Janome were sponsoring the weekend. So much fun!

I think Friday night was my favourite part - sitting out on the terrace chatting with Lynne, Mandy and Jo and then moving inside to chat with the lovely Jen Kingwell. You've probably heard already from others how lovely Jen was, but she really really was! There may have been some pawing of her Green Tea & Sweet Beans and Gypsy Wife quilts......oh my, they are beautiful. I think I was probably the silly one stood there holding the quilt with my mouth open going 'wow' a lot. And the stories behind some of the quilts were so interesting too. An amazing night!

Saturday morning saw me learning about how to get patterns in to print with the lovely Jen from Love Patchwork & Quilting and then going on to embroidery with Jo. I learnt so many new tips and tricks, I can't wait to get my sampler finished when I get some time.


Saturday afternoon was a lesson with Jen Kingwell for applique and hand-stitching GTSB quilt. See, Jen is such a lovely person that she even made us all a little finger pin-cushion which got handed out with a copy of the pattern. I got to sit next to Hadley during this class (who may have laughed at how poorly organised I was!) but aside from the mick-taking it was really great to spend time with her as I'd not really had a chance last year. It took me ages to trace the templates and cut them all out, and I still haven't finished my starter blocks but I am so going to make this quilt one day. I said to Jen that GTSB is a quilt that I've always said I'm going to do when I'm a grown-up (!) but I now have the confidence to make a start on it. 

Saturday night was great fun. After some more chatting on the terrace with Kerry, Jo, MalmesburyJen and some others there was a little bit of shopping at the market night before we settled down for the quiz night. I was on Team Butler with Hadley, Jo, Thomas Knauer and many others and I don't think I've laughed so much in a long time. And did I mention that we won? Another Jen Kingwell pattern - Stardust this time. My bucket list may be starting to look a little silly now!!!!!


Sunday morning saw me learning tips & tricks on Touchdraw with Lynne which was brilliant and then modern knots with Thomas: a really fun class with lots more laughter and chatting. And this is pretty much the only sample that I've actually managed to finish so far - just some binding to go.

So there you go, a pretty long summary of my weekend. It doesn't cover sharing a room with Trash and Margerite (who were fabulous roomies!) As you've probably gathered from my witterings it really was lovely!!!! There was lots of laughter. Lots of fun and I so want to go again next year if I can clear a weekend pass with the hubby. A big thank you to Lynne, Brioni, Tasha, the Two Jacks and many others who I've probably forgotten to mention.

See you soon, 

S x

Todays sky ● blue and sunny and then cloudy and rainy. Meh!








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