Saturday, 26 March 2011

A right pig's ear!

I have been keeping up with Barbara Brackman's Civil War blocks, in a fashion. Because she has cleverly resized all the blocks to 8" finished, some of the cutting measurements are a little strange, including lots of eighths. While I have done my best on all these, London Square has defeated me! Those half square triangles in the middle aren't accurate enough, so when I joined the triangles on the side, not only did I lose all the points, but the resultant block was too big. So what did I do? I trimmed it! How stupid was that! Now I have a block which is eight and a half inches square, but has very little else to recommend it! (I don't need to wonder why, instead of unpicking it, I'd trimmed it! We all know the answer to that question!) Back to the cutting board!

Friday, 18 March 2011

Spreading the word 2

One of my New Year's Resolutions was to 'spread the word' about quilting, and this week I've managed to succeed at this! Last year I was invited by Botcheston W.I. to give them a talk about Project Linus, and I so inspired them, that they asked me to come back and do a workshop for them.

They were such a friendly group of ladies, and here they are all busy hand sewing and chatting. (The conversation ranged from the theatre, sports, burglary, the colour of our school underwear to male nudity! A good spread of topics! ) They all worked really hard, and in one morning achieved enough diagonal strippy blocks to make 3 cot quilts!

Here are the blocks laid out for one top, ready to be assembled and bordered. I was glad when lunchtime arrived, as I'd run out of Vilene foundations, and nearly run out of strips! We all enjoyed the morning, and they are keen to have another sewing day in the autumn. I'll look forward to it!

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Sewing, Jim, but not as we know it.

I'm still sewing, but this last 10 days or so has been filled with teaching, planning, driving around the country delivering quilts for Project Linus and my new project, as costume maker for 'Midsummer Night's Dream'. Our local group is taking another production to the Edinburgh Festival in August, and yet again, I've got myself roped into doing the costumes!

Much time has been spent by me making the costume for Oberon.
I know it looks like a wedding dress, but it's made from lightweight calico to be drapey, flowy and organic in feel, and will be spray-dyed to either light brown or green to represent the fairies' position as creatures of the wood. (That's the idea, anyway!) I need to get Russ to try it on, then I can finish it off.

Then I dyed some of the calico (I bought a whole 25 metre bolt) for the leaves which will be made into creepers to decorate the set. That was fun, and even more fun when I got people at the rehearsal to cut out some leaf shapes when they were waiting to go on! Crafty!

There has been sewing too. My teaching was a log cabin class, and I had to make some blocks up for samples. I had forgotten what such a versatile block this is, and have decided to make a quilt in this unusual pattern, which is in 'Quilts of Illusion' by Laura Fisher. She says it is a streak of lightening variation, and I suppose it is, when you focus on the dark zig-zags. I have just used darks and lights, and really like how it is coming along.
On Saturday, at Rocheberie Schoolhouse Quilters, we are having a competition to make a Morsbag on the theme of 'Celebration'. Here is my effort. I'm not thinking about winning the prize, just taking part. Now back to the log cabins!

Friday, 4 March 2011

Some finishes

Since I have no patience at all, I like to have lots of different projects on the go at the same time. There is always some piecing, some quilting, some layering up and some applique going on at the same time, so I can pick up whatever I feel in the mood for. So this week I have felt in the mood for finishing.

These hexagon blocks were joined together in the start of a quilt and then donated to Project Lnus. I rearranged some of the blocks to make the quilt into a rectangle, bravely cut through the edges to straighten them, bordered, layered and quilted. The fabrics are a bit 60s, but I think it makes a pretty Linus quilt.

Roll, roll, cotton boll has all its borders on, and since DD kindly took the papers out of the string blocks, I'm ready to layer it up. One of the best thing about this quilt is that I didn't have to buy a single piece of fabric to make it! All the fabric came out of my stash! How good is that! I have always liked Bonnie Hunter's designs, but I'm getting to like them more and more, and have started making leaders and enders to use up my scraps, which is very satisfying!

This quilt was made using other people's scraps. I was given a bag with lots of toning scraps in lime green (it looks yellow in this photo), black and white from the 'Authentic' range. I was able to use the scraps to make 9-patches, which have been alternated with black to make this very sophisticated Linus top. Now for some layering up!