Tuesday, 17 October 2017

finding a favourite fabric

Ever find a fabric, one that you want to use in just about eveything?
Well, this is my latest favourite find, "Gradi Flora" by Phillip Jacobs for Rowan . . .

. . . and it was hiding in my stash all this time!

I teamed it up with a pretty Liberty fabric
and now have one more 'whimsy' block to add to my collection.
{Oh, and for those tempted to make these sweet blocks,
I've discovered the trick to making them not so springy, add those final triangles last.} 

And how about you, is there one favourite fabric you tend to use over & over?
Linking up with Emily for 'moving it forward' over here
and with Cynthia for 'oh scrap' here

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

sew stitch snap SHARE #14

Hi everyone, how is your week going?
I have a finished quilt to share today

I used a Kaffe pattern that I'd admired for some time now, 'Ebay on Point' from his Caravan of Quilts book. Lots of fun using this eclectic mix of fabrics- Kaffes, spots, checks & stripes, AMH, lots of other little bits of Amy B., Jen Kingwell, Denyse Schmidt, outback wife, and some smaller scale reproduction fabrics.
The finished quilt measures 180cms x 145cms, and was lightly quilted in a 'modern ribbons' pattern by Annette de Raat with wool blend batting. {Earlier progress photos can be found here and here.}

And I've also been chipping away slowly at my 'whimsy' quilt, one block at a time. I'm finding there's quite a 'springiness' to these blocks, maybe because I am machine piecing them? Using a scant 1/4" seam certainly seems to help a bit. {See back here and here for more progress pics} 

I had a little play on the 'design floor' today, just to see how the blocks were looking all together, and I also wanted to check out how the borders were going to go, have a little look . . .

16 blocks down, not too sure how many to go yet but I'm very happy with these so far.

Time now for another fortnightly 'Sew, Stitch, Snap, SHARE' linkup
My pick from last time were these pretty 'delilah' blocks by Susan from patchworknplay
Have a closer look at Susan's fussy cutting, such a great use of fabric.

Pop on over here to see lots more & be inspired.

And what are you working on right now? Whatever you're sewing or stitching, you can link it up here. Just follow these simple guidelines:

1. Link up any post from the past week that features something you have been sewing or stitching, whether they are WiPs or finishes. You can write as much or as little about your project as you like, or simply let your photos do the talking.
2. Somewhere in your post, please link back to this post.
3. Please comment on a couple of the other Sew, Stitch, Snap, SHARE links.

We are trying to encourage people to read blogs and to keep blogging.
Hope you find some new inspiration too and thanks for joining us
Julie & Linda

Saturday, 7 October 2017

handkerchief corner quilt top {a little more progress}

I hadn't intended sewing today, lots of gardening took my initial attention. However, Leeanne from quiltmekiwi kindly sent me a few extra plaids, and they arrived today. They were all shirts bought from Op Shops, washed & dismantled to 'one day' be made into quilts.
So I popped into the sewing room for an hour or so late this afternoon and made a few more blocks for my handkerchief corner quilt. And don't those shirt plaids mix in so easily with all the other Kaffe pastel prints?

Interestingly, there are many versions of this block, and with just as many names too - 1/4 log cabin, handkerchief corners, and Ann from fretnotyourself added a few more - half log, housetops (her favorite), improv log. 

At present I have 20 blocks set 4 x 5, but am going to go a bit bigger . . .
it's fun trying to combine this unlikely mix of fabrics
Linking up with Myra for 'finished or not Friday' over here at busyhandsquilts
and with Cynthia for 'oh scrap' here  

Monday, 2 October 2017

tone it down

Taking a break from sewing all things bright & beautiful and trying out a 'toned down' version of a vintage inspired 'handkerchief corner' quilt from Kaffe's 'Passionate Patchwork' book.

I'm mixing up lots of pastel Kaffe colour with (slightly) neutral elements, like plaids, stripes & checks. Easypeasy sewing, but what's so interesting is how the color of a fabric is not really known until it is actually playing alongside it's neighbour. My little challenge is to achieve enough value contrast to look softly scrappy and patchy- some blocks worked out better than others today!

and just a few more . . .

Loving this gently faded vintage vibe, quiet (for me) but certainly not boring!
Linking up with Cynthia for 'oh scrap' here

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

sew stitch snap SHARE #13

Happy Wednesday everyone!

I have a couple of quilts almost at the 'ready for quilting' stage,
so this week I'm spending a bit of time piecing up backings and bindings.

Remember my 'floribunda' quilt, the one with a mish-mash of busy bright colour? (see here  and here for earlier progress photos). Well, as I was measuring up for the binding, I felt the edges were a little unstable. So I added an extra neutral-ish border which has strengthened things and seems to give a bit of a resting place for the eye.
And after some initial uncertainty, I like it! Hehe, instead of rows of flying geese, I think it now looks rather like those iconic bathing boxes at Brighton Beach in Melbourne!

{original beach photo can be found here}

. . . now all ready for quilting.

Time for another fortnightly 'Sew, Stitch, Snap, SHARE' linkup
And once again, there were lots of inspiring projects shared last time around. These pretty star blocks made by Karen from Karen'sQuilts...etc caught my eye. She started a new EPP project recently, Sue Daley's 'round we go' (see here for more details). I love that green fabric combo!

And what are you working on right now?
Whatever you're sewing or stitching, you can link it up here.

Just follow these simple guidelines:

1. Link up from any post from the past week that features something you have been sewing or stitching. You can write as much or as little about your project as you like, or simply let your photos do the talking.
2. Somewhere in your post, please link back to this post.
3. Please comment on a couple of the other Sew, Stitch, Snap, SHARE links - its fun to receive comments from new people, and we are trying to encourage people to read blogs and to keep blogging. Hope you find some new inspiration too!

Thanks for joining us, Julie & Linda

Sunday, 24 September 2017

a not so pastel 'vintage comfort' quilt

My not so pastel 'vintage comfort' quilt got the extra border treatment today. I'm using Judy Newman's pattern from her new book here and I tossed up for a while about making my version in soft pastels too. But I've seen some other inspiring colour combos over on instgram lately - see here,   here, and here . And, I'm a big fan of the modern way Sheena Chapman uses vintage fabrics, see here too, so I decided to be a bit adventurous, à la Sheena!

However, the other thing that also determines the direction of most of my projects is what I actually have on hand in my stash at the time. I mainly buy fat 1/4's, I figure that's a good way to get variety, and as I'm into scrappy quilts, variety is good.  The problem arises when I need larger amounts of fabric for borders, backgrounds and dividing strips, like today! Things got a bit touch & go with the red & white microdot background fabric and the wasabi green linen- both of which I ran out of midflight.

Still with this controlled pallette, a crazy mish-mash of old & new fabrics, a playful stripe, and lots of improv piecing, I got there in the end. It's quite a big quilt, approx. 170cms (68") x 200cms (80"), my usual spot on the deck for pics wasn't high enough, but you get the general idea.

Love to hear how you decide just how much fabric to buy? 
Linking up with Cynthia over here for 'oh scrap'.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Blogger's Quilt Festival

This week starts the Fall 2017 edition of the Bloggers Quilt Festival, and I have decided to participate too and share one of my most recent, most favourite finishes and one a few of you will have seen here before, my "Queen of the May" quilt.

On my last trip to Melbourne I visited Somerset Patchwork and fell in love with Karen's quilt 'Circle of Sisters' that was on display in the shop.
It was such a bright recreation of a vintage quilt. The blocks were on a wonderful yellow cheddar background, the whole quilt simply glowed, and I've always loved the idea of making a quilt one day on something so bright too.
And so back in January this year I jumped right in!

Inspired by Kathy from materialobsession and her use of contemporary fabrics with traditional designs, I've been experimenting more lately, mixing and matching bright fabrics from my scrap basket. I used a template set  "queen of the May" from way back, it was my favourite block from an earlier Material Obsession BOM quilt that I made.

The 'printonprints' effect is quite wild and colourful, and a fun way to go! It's such a very different direction from where I would usually go, and the hardest thing was not to make them all too nicely co-ordinated.

Choosing my background fabric also proved tricky. After quite a few days of experimenting with different borders, different sashings and different settings, I ended up using the lovely Victoria Findlay Wolfe yellow floral, Elise Mostly Manor. Such a riot of busy happy colour!

As I made up the blocks and trialled them on the yellow background they seemed to get a bit lost on it. So what to do? Then I had a light bulb moment ... ric rac.
I've seen ric rac used on some quilts before - Rachaeldaisy from 'blue mountain daisy' has used ric rac in some very inspiring ways on her lovely quilts. So off I went to 'Spotlight' (it's similar to 'Jo Anns' I think), and bought a few metres of blue ric rac. 

- close up of the beautiful machine quilting by Leeanne from quiltmekiwi

I really enjoyed making this quilt, from making all the wild fabric choices right through to the traditional construction. You can read lots more about my inspiration details and decision dilemmas from an earlier post here  - it is my most popular post so far.

Pop on over here to amyscreativeside for a look at all the festival quilts,
it's a great way to discover and follow new quilting blogs too. 

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

pat-next-door's quilt

And finally, after having lots of projects mid flight
it feels good to have a little finish!

Pat-next-door is going to be a great grandmother in October and requested a 'pink' quilt. 
'Pink squared' is all ready now for her
and her soon to be born great granddaughter over on Waiheke Island

- I did lots of simple straight line quilting all over this quilt

- and Evie had a little test drive this afternoon before we handed it over to Pat.

- close up of binding & backing

 a few quilt stats:
I joined in with #junequiltqal a couple of months ago over at crazymomquilts, 
- such a fun easy way to make a quilt
Finished quilt measures 130cms x 175cms
I used a limited colour palette,
featuring Les Fleurs rose tapestry, rifle paper for Cotton & Steel for the larger squares
and a cute pink fabric from Andover Fabrics, Lizzy House for the smaller filler squares.
Backing was a soft pink flannette sheet from Pat's cupboard
and the binding was a blending stripe from my stash.

Linking up with Emily for 'moving it forward' over here at emsscrapbag
with Beth for 'main crush Monday' here
and with Lorna for 'let's bee social' over here at sewfreshquilts