Saturday, 29 May 2010

Challenge quilts delivered

I have finished my alphabet quilt, and since all the entries to the challenge have to be in by Wednesday, DD and I had a little run down to the Bramble Patch to take my quilt, and hers.

This is my quilt, bordered in orange and bound in purple,

and here is hers. She decided that because the fabric was modern, she wanted to make a traditional piece, and since it said, 'pure, actual, authentic' etc on it, it would be good to do something which was not pure, actual or authentic. She finally hit on the famous spy, Mata Hari, and put her image on here (needled-turned, I'll have you know!) like a cameo. I doubt if either quilt will win the Margaret Every Cup, but at least they'll contribute to the exhibition, and raise some money for charity.

PS Have a look at Caroline's fabulous entry here.

Friday, 28 May 2010

Linus quilts

I was recently invited to Ashlawn School in Rugby to talk to a Year 9 group about quilting. Their course included a module on recycling and sutainability, and their lovely teacher, Shakira, thought that quilting would fit in nicely. The girls (it was all girls, sadly) were a lovely group and very much enjoyed seeing some of my quilts, and were astounded to handle some Dream Green wadding (made from plastic bottles, if you've not come acrosst) and find how soft it was. I suggested that they might like to make some simple blocks for a Linus quilt, and they were very enthusiastic.

This is the back of the block, which is just strings sewn to a piece of lightweight Vilene either by hand or machine. If you fancy a go, the Vilene was cut into 6.5" squares. It's a simple project for anyone who can do a running stitch.

And here are the completed blocks, arranged ready for sewing together. It was lucky that there were 25 pupils present on that day, so it has been easy to include every block. Some of the blocks weren't quite finished, so while I was adding some strips, I decided to make a few extra blocks using leaders and enders.

Chris had kindly given me a bag full of gorgeous hand dyed fabrics, many of which were brown (and some frankly sludgy!) and immediately made me think of gingerbreadmen!

Here they are, getting ready to dance! I'll be making more as I assemble the girls's quilt.

Friday, 21 May 2010

I know my a, b, c!

The last three letters on my alphabet weren't as tricky as some, and I've done them!

I will make some four-patches for the corners, then it's border decisions! Watch this space!

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Nearly there!

I have been busy working on my alphabet blocks (DH is away on business, which makes it easier to commit the time!). Only three more to go!

I am particularly pleased with the 'w'. It took a bit of working out, but I did it in the end!
X, y, z here I come!

Monday, 17 May 2010

A finish and progress

I have bound and finished my latest baby quilt and now just have to wait for news of the arrival to label and deliver it.

Since it was made from a pattern, I felt the need to personalise it. I've quilted birds at the side of each cat (you can just see them in the photo), and each cat has a different face. One is just smiling,
one is putting its tongue out

one is a bit surprised
and one is winking!
I have also been making more letters.

Fourteen down - twelve to go!

Sunday, 16 May 2010


I had a phone call from The Bramble Patch the other day, checking that I was on track to take my challenge quilt for the Strawberries and Cream fundraising exhibition. I assured them that I was happy to bring it by 2nd June. What I didn't tell, was that I hadn't even started it - although I did have an idea!

What better to do with fabric with words on it, than an alphabet quilt! (I've got another friend expecting a baby later in the summer, and since she's a librarian, I think it might hit the spot!) The 'b' needs some attention, and I need a bottom border on it and on the 'f' but so far so good. Only sixteen more to go!

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Works in progress

Since I finished my 'darling buds of may' wall-hanging I haven't ben idle, although I don't seem to have too much to show for it. I continue to be surrounded by pregnant tummies and have been making a baby quilt for a colleague's daughter. (Poor girl, she's already had an ectopic pregnancy, so everyone is extra delighted this time around.)

I have nearly finished the top, just a bit more embroidery to do. The pattern is one from 'Quiltmaker' and was very straighforward to make. I bought new fabric for the centre of the quilt (I have loads of fat quarters - mainly with bits cut out! - but little yardage) and otherwise have used stash fabric. If the sun was shining, you would be able to see how pretty it is!

Another dark picture, but these are free-cut stars a la Gwen Marston. In fact, the quilt is going to be pretty much a copy of one in her new book 'Liberated Quiltmaking 2'. I have been able to use some gorgeous Kaffe Fassett fabrics I have had for ages, including a pack of charm squares which goodness only knows why I bought! I need 6 more stars then I will make it up, with plain cream borders. Lots of room for quilting on this one. It will be a present for a friend who has been through a tough time recently.

Monday, 3 May 2010

The darling buds of May and the darling buds of May!

I have finished my free-pieced words wall-hanging!

Here is it amongst flowers in my garden (not buds actually, but the best I could do.) The words aren't all that easy to see, but sometimes you have to work at things to get the benefit.

Saturday, 1 May 2010


I have been busy working on my wall-hanging for my challenge group. Last time's challenge was to use photos, and this time's is to use free-pieced letters. (Guess whose idea that was!) Here are my efforts.

The first word went well, but as I proceeded, I realised that I had chosen two fabrics which both read as mediums, and I should have had one of them as a dark or a light. Never mind.

The next problem was that I had forgotten how much fabric is needed for free pieced shapes, and I was in danger of running out of the floral fabric. I searched all my scrap boxes to no avail. Would I have enough to finish the letters?
Only one more word to go, and I think I will at least have enough for the words.
But I had intended to use the floral fabric around the letters, and there was no more fabric at all.
By careful piecing (and a rummage through the waste bin!) I managed to find enough scraps to at least make a background for the words. Can you see the desperation-piecing on the bottom left corner?
Hooray! With a bit of juggling and fudging, the words are complete! Now to decide on borders etc. Do you recognise the quote? It's written by my number-one hero, William Shakespeare, and is from Sonnet 18 - usually known as 'Shall I compare thee to a summer's day'. Whose words would be better to make in fabric?!

I've also finished my next stitchery from Caroline's blog. Very apt!