Thursday 27 February 2014

keeping it natural

Take four very old blocks
   Add a lovely linen         
     Layer it all up
       Top with some quintessential quilting
            .... and voila!

Many thanx to Annette
for the quilting
(Wild Cotton Quilting Ltd, Laingholm, Auckland, NZ.)

Sunday 23 February 2014

sew scrappy update

I'm making Jen Kingwell's "Broken Dishes" quilt at present.

The blocks do go together very easily.  The key is to remember to always have the b & w triangle on top when sewing up the pairs & to always sew the seam on the same side!!  And once you have made a few, the star & circular patterns come out really effectively!  It seems I have a predominance of blues in my stash, and not much variety of low volume black & whites. For a couple of my darker b & w I did find using the "wrong" side worked ok!   But still haven't got much of an assortment here.  In the interests of dieting - fabric diet that is - I'm thinking maybe a scrappy fabric swap might be the way to go?!?

Linking up with WIP Wednesday later on.

Friday 21 February 2014

sew scrappy

A few of our Monday Modern group have started a fabric diet support group, great idea!  
I haven't made any real commitments regarding not buying fabrics, mainly because I know I would inevitably not stick to it!!! ..........but this year I too am really, really trying to use what I have.
So, my fabrics here at home have been the starting point for most of my sewing lately. I also raid the big basket under the sewing table where all my little scrappy offcuts go!
(As for things like binding/ backing/ batting & borders, well I guess sometimes I will just need to go shopping!!)
My fabric choices have been a real random mix n' match between colours & collections over the years and, luckily now, I find there's really something very appealing about a scrappy quilt. This weekend I'm going to make a start on one of Jen Kingwell's patterns. It's a colourful scrappy quilt, with a bit of black & white to add a "modern"  twist, just perfect for me & my stash !!   This morning I pulled out a few low volume black & whites, along with some of my favourite bits of print fabric, and began to cut out.


Thursday 13 February 2014

Glam Clam

Well I must admit, I've always wanted to make a Clamshell quilt.

And I think I may have just 
stumbled upon the perfect pattern
....No pins, no ironing
...How can this be?  

I was catching up on the now finished  "True Colours" blog tour & spotted this- 
And I checked out Latifah Saafir's free patterns for a 4", 6" &  8″ Glam Clam or 12″ Glam Clam quilteach with printable templates & detailed instructions!!!!

So I downloaded the 8" pattern....

I'm thinking maybe just a baby size quilt to trial it, something soft & pretty.
Has anyone else tried this method?

Wednesday 12 February 2014

some sewing progress

What a gorgeous week it's been so far!!  Spent a lazy sunny Sunday afternoon at the band rotunda in the domain listening to jazz, gardening the next day, followed by an "olive day" with dancing & swimming lessons!  It's the Chinese Lantern Festival up next, so...not too much time for sewing! 

I did manage to sew
 the border onto my Vintage Rosy Quilt.
Luckily I had just enough of a soft -blending- type fabric...
once I'd joined a few smaller pieces together!

And I've re-arranged my squares on "the big quilt"
so many many times!
A simple pattern,
with a simple scrappy look, 
and maybe a bit of simple quilting eventually?!?    
Linking up with Lee's WIP Wednesday

Saturday 8 February 2014

colour quandry!

Later today I just wanted to relax, put a border on my vintage rosy quilt, & layer it up ready for quilting. But... my daughter needs a new quilt!
She does, of course, have several quilts, however they are not big enough!!  They have a kingsize bed and while I have made a couple of larger quilts, none of them go over the sides & the bottom of the bed. I did suggest she simply buy something to cover the whole bed & then pop her quilts on top.
But no, she did the maths stating that large scrappy squares would do it  (how is it that she can work out exactly how many squares I'd need so quickly?!?), & then began pulling fabrics out from everywhere.
I tried to remind her about chosing large & medium scale prints, some stripes maybe, a few solid fabrics, and assorted small scale prints to ensure everything would work well together. We had alot of fun mixing things up ....AMH, Kaffe, Amy Butler, a bit of Denise Schmitd, and I found that the pearl bracelet fabrics added a real calmness!
Do others make larger quilts?
Without using any real pattern, I feel there's such a lot to factor in really.... the expense, the time, the worry that it won't gel, etc. I really want to use just my stash fabrics for this, but some bits are small so that in itself is an issue. And I am of the feeling that we really need to plan this a bit more, especially as it's to be so large. So I put together a few options, and am still v. unsure which way to go!!!!

Option 1 (with an "anything goes" gyspy sort of feel to it!) (which it what my daughter sort of wants..I think!) ( but would it work??)

Option 2 (somewhat tamer & using less fabrics!) (-ve would need to go shopping for this!)

Option 3 (I consulted AMH blog for this more balanced look!)

Option 4 (using a lovely AMH butterfly print as inspiration)

I would really appreciate some quilty input here please!!! needs to be such a big quilt, I am reluctant to start!
*Updated Sunday - just reading Sarah's latest entry over @  very interesting, and all the comments also applicable & v. helpful for me just now !!!

Wednesday 5 February 2014

a real thing for blue!

Do others have a colour that you almost always include in your patchwork?
I certainly do ...and it's blue! 
I seem to use it consistantly, it's a real favourite & I throw a bit in here & there, into almost everything I make! I haven't, however, made a mainly solely blue quilt, but today I gave it a go!
I'm using a good, old, tried & true receipe - the Kaffe Fassett "Rosy Quilt", a layout of 9- patch and large squares. It's a quilt pattern that I have seen many, many versions of, and I continue to love how the same patchwork structure can look so different when assorted themes/colours/prints are's such an adaptable pattern!!  (as are most of his)  

Well, what can I say?!?? 
and then a bit of cream found it's way in there
and then a few browns!
so I guess now it's a very "vintage" rosy quilt!!!   
Linking up with Lee's  WIP Wednesday @ later on, (we are a day ahead here in NZ!)

Saturday 1 February 2014


The last few quilts I have made lately have had a similar trend, or look about them.... larger blocks, repeated shapes, chain pieced, and v.quick & simple to make!  And I haven't got too attached to the finished result during the process!!  The colour choices have been my stumbling block but I love experimenting & trying to create some contrast happening, along with a sense of overall balance.
In the past I have found that having a few of these quilts around has been v. handy, all quilted  (even if it's simple straight line quilting!)  & bound waiting for a new home.  I give them away as birthday presents, or gifts for a newborn, or charity, or more recently, I have given quilts to friends/collegues who may be having a rough day.

But today, I thought I'd tackle a bit of recycling!!!
So,  from the need- to- make- it- now sort of quilt, I jumped to something more along the lines of a slow brewing path!!  I, like many of you, have scrap leftovers from earlier projects and this year my aim is to really try & use up what I have, rather than go shopping! (I know, I know!!!)
I thought I'd recycle some of  these precious leftovers into something, and that I would keep this quilt for myself !! (After all, it's all my sewing hours history!!). I found the "Pop Stars" quilt from my Material Obsession 2 book..... a stash quilt - perfect!
After a bit of trial & error, I selected a vintage blue for the stars, an old Denise Schmitd fabric I bought from Spotlight ages ago, and spent some time cutting up strips!  I used muslim for the foundation piecing and alternated warm & cool fabrics as I sewed the strips together........

..........and, as the book says, "slow progress but warmly satisfiying!!!
Linking up with  "put your scraps to work 2014"
So what other lovely scrappy things are you all making?