Sunday 30 October 2016

Friday 28 October 2016


I've made some progress on my latest WiP this week, 
a simple row-by-row pretty quilt, 'auntbets' quilt by Jo from frankieandray 

2 rows of 1/4 log cabins, tick

4 rows of simple patched pieces of fabric, tick

et voila!

Lots of scrappy fabrics from my stash, including AMH, Denyse Schmidt,
'fresh cut' Basic Grey, some C&S

- along with a special piece of feed sack fabric and just a little bit of Liberty
I love this sweet mix of fabric

... and now it joins the 'to be quilted' queue!

and linking my 'modern utility' finish with Kaja & Ann here for AHIQ
and with Cynthia here for 'oh scrap'

Saturday 22 October 2016

gathering up the flock

3 rows of flying geese, tick!
I'm having fun combining colours and pattern with scraps of Liberty, AMH, Basic Grey, C&S
Linking up with Cynthia for 'oh scrap' here 

Thursday 20 October 2016

improv with a plan

Lots of my latest inspiration comes from on-line pics, you too?
Like a sweet quilt pattern that I downloaded recently, all soft colours & scrappy.

And suddenly I'm busy mixing & matching fabric from my scrap baskets
for a project that was so totally not on my 'to do' list!

and yes, a bit more improv, colourful & informal
but this time, improv with a bit of a plan

Linking up with Lorna over here for show & tell

Sunday 16 October 2016

it's all trial & error

Improv =  tricky {for me!}
But even though I do struggle, I find I keep drifting back time & time again to give it another go.

I've been working playing a bit more on my 'madness' quilt... I needed to feel happy with things, and as Audrey from quiltyfolk.blogspot points out, I needed to "put the details together in a way that is genuinely YOU."

I decided to simplify things ... more horizontal rows of strings of different widths. Still scrappy. With a little nod to the original inspiration! {see here  and here for earlier details}

and here's what I learnt:
  • There's a serious shortage of dark fabrics in my stash... perfect excuse now to go shopping!
  • I found that repetition helped - whether it's a colour, a particular fabric, or a shape... if I used it once I used it again (thanx Kaja
  • Making up sections was definitely the way to go here, a little organisation amongst the chaos!
  • And taking a b&w photo along the way also helpful - in my case, it quickly showed up an interesting lack of those dark fabrics in my initial attempts and was a great way to check my distribution of values overall. 

An exercise in trial & error for sure, but the end result was pleasing and very liberating!
Linking up with Cynthia for 'oh scrap' here
and for October's scraptastic Tuesday here at shecanquilt

Friday 14 October 2016

friday favourite #6

'shelfie' pic ... more spring colour... Clivia in vintage Russian teapot
What are you loving this weekend?


Monday 10 October 2016

making madness {a WiP}

What's up on my design wall this week?
scrappy strips + delightful combinations + wild colour = madness!

I'm having a go at making "Madness" a quilt from Kathy's book Adding Layers.
Kathy from materialobsession has such a unique eye for color and for putting prints together, doesn't she?
The 'recipe' for this quilt isn't hard,
you make up sections and if it's too big, trim it, if it's too small, add to it
... what could go wrong?

... well quite a bit for me, as it turned out!
I found myself re-reading Kathy's instructions several times searching for clues
on how I could achieve some sort of balance

It's certainly been a bit of an experiment for me
{and to think, I only started going down this road rabbit hole to use up those old Japanese fabrics!}
And, after a little email chat with Kathy (thank you so much) I had lots more to think about!

All still very much a work in progress, but here's three sections so far...

... lots of strip piecing
... lots of time & thought
... AND lots of fun trying to make mine work too!

Linking up with Cynthia for 'oh scrap' here

Saturday 8 October 2016

al fresco

couldn't resist an outdoor photo shoot this morning...

my wisteria has suddenly gone crazy...

it just keeps getting better n' better...

... and just one more!

What are you loving this weekend?
Linking in with 'wandering camera' for the first time here


Thursday 6 October 2016

material strips... makedo... and mad plans!

I've made a start this week on a new scrapquilt using Kathy's quiltpattern "Madness" from her book Adding Layers, originally inspired by *Anna Williams. Actually, it's more of a 'recipe' really rather than a pattern, and is made up in sections with lots of strip piecing. I gathered up some scrappy stash fabrics along with a few 'spare parts' and began first by making up some larger units...

- goodness, Kathy suggests slicing blocks like this straight through the diagonal!

Then I had a little playful fun with my Japanese piecing...
{see here for details about this old WiP}

And I made up a couple of sections of fabric by sewing fabric strips together.
I wanted a wide variety of fabrics here- shot cottons, spots, stripes and all the rest.
Anything goes...

... but having said that, there were a few tricks I discovered along the way to sort of help make it all work! Like alternating my warm & cool fabrics, using b&w fabrics to add definition, keeping everything flowing vertically, and I suspect that if I repeat some elements that will help too. Oh, and I must also remember Kathy's advice "don't sweat the technique!"

There's certainly been moments of self doubt, some unpicking, and lots of mind changing.
and there's gaps everywhere...

... but I can see some progress today!
Linking up with Kelly for 'needle & thread Thursday' here
and with 'let's bee social' here with Lorna

a bit more #53
And if I've got you curious about all this makedo madness now too,
there's more inspiration over here at Barbara Brackman's blog

I also did a little research on *Anna Williams an African-American quilter and very inspiring!

"Anna Williams, Baton Rouge, Louisiana (American, 1927-2010) - Quilt, circa 1995 - Cotton, synthetics:  Anna Williams, an African American quilt maker born and raised near Baton Rouge, Louisiana, made quilts throughout her life, incorporating scraps of traditional printed cotton, unusual synthetics and woven or decorated fabrics such as the sequined pieces seen here.  The artist's bold approach combines traditional block settings with free-flowing improvisation and a masterful use of colour.  In the late 1980s, Williams' unique style of quilt-making became highly regarded by artists and collectors."

Sunday 2 October 2016

a lost cause {or not?}

Thanx for all the comments last week on my scrappy trips quilt, still waiting for the last little bit of border fabric to arrive!

This weekend I've been relooking at an old WiP

noun: lost cause;
a person or thing that can no longer hope to succeed or be changed for the better.

Every now & then I pull out this bundle of fabrics 
thinking why have I collected these fabrics only for them languish away in the wardrobe,
never to end up in a quilt?

It's a quilt kit I bought years ago when I came back to quilting after a 15yr break, 
... and to be honest, it's been a 'work in (very long) progress'!

... I remember a time when Japanese fabrics were popular, they are so full of colour & design

larger blocks are 7 1/2" square small sections 4 1/2" square

... I remember trying out those partial seams for the first time

I often get this WiP out, I really loved it when I started it
Now, I look at all the fabrics for a few days,
I wonder about continuing on with the original pattern, staying true to its era and original intention
and then... thinking it's all a bit of a lost cause... I pop it away again! 

I do have a large section {approx. 66" x 28"} all together

and there's also quite a large pile of more assorted scrappy fabric all cut up and all ready to go...

... and most of the fabrics I do still love - individually!

But here's the thing...
when I look at 'my stash', ever so precious that it is, sadly some of it can appear a little dated now! 

And that's when I think a scrappy stash quilt could be a wonderful solution! 
I'm about to mix these fabrics up in a way that may or may not all go together
... using other orphan blocks, blending modern florals, vintage & reproduction, 
... maybe slice things up a bit
... maybe add some b&w strip piecing
{Those of you who have Kathy's book, Adding Layers, will know which rabbithole I'm heading down here!}

Hm-m -m- so maybe no, it's not a lost cause after all, and fingers crossed it'll make for an interesting quilt!  

And you? Have you built up a fabric stash over the years?
If so, how do you deal with your pre-modern fabrics?
Linking up here for 'oh scrap'