Wednesday 28 July 2021

sewing something sweet & something simple


Change of mood & pace around here this week. After struggling a little with my asymmetrical quilt I was feeling a bit discouraged. I just felt like working on something simple that I didn’t need to overthink, but would end up looking good! So I've started two - yes two - projects! 

I decided it was time to jump in and check out the pretty florals I received in the post recently. Wink wink… and like Wendy fromwendy'squiltsandmore I'm doing my bit too in supporting the Auzzie economy while they’re in lockdown, so it’s all good! 
This is a pack with a selection of small 1/8th & 1/16th fabric cuts which I am using as my starting point and will mix up with my stash here.  I'm not planning on making the quilt this pack was curated for, but something equally sweet. 

Do you still buy quilting magazines? I haven't for quite a few years now, so I was very surprised when my friend Glenys suggested we go halves in the latest digital issue of Make Modern. And I must say, there were a lot of tempting ideas tucked away in there, like this "One Ways" quilt by Heather Black. So we are both making this, like a sort of no pressure sew-along. 

It's an easy fun triangle sampler quilt that I immediately thought would be perfect for my collection of Denyse Schmidt fabrics. I love her fabric collections, they are such a great mix of floral & geometric prints in bright colours to give a scrappy yet cohesive look. Some of these are early fabrics, and maybe difficult to find these days, and I'm also adding in some of her new stuff.  I'm teaming them all up with a couple of low volume fabrics for a nice fresh simple look. 

A few days of sewing a few things so sweet & simple is just what I needed!

Until next time, Linda

Sunday 25 July 2021

what's in a name


- OMG folded like this, it looks so similar to the original 'predictable' pattern I started out with 😂

And, just before I go, I'm not too sure exactly what to call this quilt. Is it an improv quilt - an art quilt - an asymmetrical 'pink pathways' quilt - an easy HSTs in a diamond setting quilt. Who knows, but {wink wink} I'm calling it "done for now".

Loved having a go at being more creative with my stash,
even if the result wasn't quite what I expected! 

Until next time,

Wednesday 21 July 2021

50 shades of pink

*EDIT: photo update, scroll down to see

Thank you for all the feedback on my last couple of posts,
seems like lots of you are enjoying my 50 shades of pink

 - next batch of crumb blocks

- my focus fabric 

I've been busy making more crumb blocks this week for my present pink project, the 'predictable' quilt, {pattern @sunspellwho encourages you to put your own spin on her design}. It's all made up with HSTs, with the interest lying in the random way the triangles are laid out, giving it a modern vibe.

And I thought I'd combine this project somehow with the recent AHIQ challenge. Kaja from sewslowly discussed our various preferences to working asymmetrically or symmetrically with our quilts. Her new challenge is to pick whichever of these is furthest from your comfort zone and see what you can do.
After some research, a few panic moments & a couple of chats online {thanks to both Susan & Julie}, I'm thinking my 'predictable' quilt could be leaning towards being an asymmetrical quilt - it's got that modern asymmetrical composition with the more traditional HST blocks. I'm also planning on adding an asymmetrical border on two sides, shifting the midpoint over to further achieve asymmetry.

Here's a few progress photos of how things are looking down on the 'design floor' . . .

- now this is looking more interesting and exciting!

{wink wink} Still don’t know if I’m on the right track for the challenge, 
but I'm trying not to overthink this too much.
And it's certainly predictably unpredictable!

Ever had a picture of a quilt in your mind, 
then as you proceed, you find it's just not happening how you imagined?

Well, after lots of faffing around and with only 4 more blocks to make,
this is finally coming together nicely and making me smile again! 

Love to hear your thoughts on which sort of quilt you prefer to make -
symmetrical? or asymmetrical? 

Tuesday 20 July 2021

a new challenge

a new challenge : Asymmetrical v Symmetrical

Kaja from sewslowly recently discussed our various preferences to working asymmetrically or symmetrically with our quilts. Her new challenge for AHIQ is to pick whichever of these is furthest from your comfort zone and see what you can do.
I did a little research and to put things simply - "Something is symmetrical when it is the same on both sides. A shape has symmetry if a central dividing line (a mirror line) can be drawn on it, to show that both sides of the shape are exactly the same".

Hmm, well I think I definitely tend to make more symmetrical looking quilts, 
here's a few that stand out to me...

More research was required to further define asymmetry for me because, while I have made a few quilts that were definitely more improv in style, where that cohesive balance took a bit of work, I can't say I've ever made an asymmetrical {modern} quilt as such. 
But what I did find were a few examples of asymmetrical balance within my own quilts. Here are a few quilts that I think have an asymmetrical composition of the more traditional patchwork blocks, like New York Beauty, Flying Geese, Log Cabins, Rail Fence, etc.

And like Janie from crazyvictoriana I knew if I shared these you'd get all excited, share your quilts, and maybe join in the challenge too . . .

This first quilt was made from a selection of orphan blocks. To me it's improv, as I didn't use a pattern nor did I have any idea how the finished quilt was going to look. 

Again, this feels like improv to me, no pattern, just an overwhelming desire to work with the colour "grey". The asymmetrical balance in this quilt could be viewed as chaotic or visually interesting & exciting, depending on your point of view!

 symmetrical arrangement of asymmetrical blocks ↑
↓ asymmetrical arrangement of symmetrical blocks, yes?

And finally, leftover low volume blocks put together improv style using the 'magic numbers' formula. I love an inconsistently balanced quilt.

I think I mostly have the asymmetrical/symmetrical labeled right, let me know what you think.
Asymmetry is one topic I do find interesting, and definitely The. Most. Challenging. So I'm off now to deal to my present pink project, my 'predictable' quilt - it's been giving me headaches but I feel very much like it could fit somehow into the asymmetrical section of Kaja's challenge!

Wish me luck 🤞

Saturday 17 July 2021

'predictable': a new project

It's another wet weekend here,
what's a girl  woman to do but sew!
Not sure I needed to start another quilt just yet though … but it's happened!

I was trying to sort out some of my orphan quilt blocks, maybe to sew together into more cohesive segments, but then I got distracted and started stitching small bits together into crumb blocks. Totally got off track in the sewing room, again. 

So now I'm working on another crumb quilt, and I thought you would like to see what I've done so far. From its cheerful colour palette to its grab-bag construction method, it's super fun to make.

There's a mixture of recycled, vintage, a few solids and new fabric, including a few silky bits and a bold green & white striped skirt that I got from Aunty Freda. 
I'm sewing with fabric strips in pinks & green with splashes of blue & gold, joining them up in no particular order, then cutting them, pairing them, and then sewing them back together again, with an occasional additional long strip. I'm aiming for a selection of small pieces of fabric, sometimes only slivers of special pieces, within each 6" little block.

So, not so long ago I made a crumb quilt, still love  it, but this time around I wanted to go just a tad further. And luckily sometimes, when you’re killing time on Instagram, you manage to find The. Perfect. Pattern, see here @sunspell for the 'predictable' quilt pattern. I was also inspired by a couple of IG feeds - Margaret's version here @semichaotic, and all the crumb block love over @afullenglish

It is such a fun pattern celebrating the good old HST, with endless possibilities for where the pathways can go. As I have a big pile of these crumb blocks made up now, I'm making a few HST blocks, combining the crumb block squares with squares in an assortment of pinks in different values, {since I don't have 2 metres of any one fabric in pink}. Then I'll put my own spin on this pattern, joining them all up into a predictably unpredictable pathway! 

😕 maybe something like this . . .

 or maybe I'll go down the easier path with a more predictable setting like one of these . . .

 or even this . . .

No setting decisions just yet.
But it sounds like lots more wet & windy weather tomorrow
so I'll be back at the sewing machine making more crumb blocks before I make that final decision.

Linking up with Cyndy for 'oh scrap' here
Until next time, Linda

Tuesday 6 July 2021

a spot of Kaffe colour

I do enjoy it when a quilt begins to come together. I often start out on a whim - usually with no firm plans and none of the maths worked out - just an inspiration or idea gleaned from a book or another quilt I've seen somewhere. Things seem to slowly evolve in their own way, changing as I progress, and I tend to end up with quite a different look from what I started out with in my mind, you too?

Take these 16 patch blocks I'm making at present … I was going for a rather vague idea of combining 
lots of Kaffe pastel spots. The more I sewed, the more I began exploring scale and value, and the clearer the picture became - one of a delightful mosaic effect in bright pastel blues & purples, with a little help from supporting floral fabrics in grey & pink, and a very useful white & black spot.

Then up popped Kaffes 'dancing dahlias' in multi! No need to rethink this though, the warm slivers of extra bright colour in this print are a super addition to the fractured look. Love the pic in one of Kaffe's books of a his entranceway, diamonds using smashed up garage sale and flea market finds, {see my inspiration collage pic below}.

I spent a bit of time auditioning the blocks I'd made, adding repeats of colour and taking any glaringly 'wrong' blocks out. I ran out of time to actually get the top all sewn up, but here's how things were looking down on the design floor last night . . . 

And a day later . . .

Quilt top stats: 
The pattern is a St Louis 16 patch {with creative license!} using Kaffe fabrics
Initial inspiration was a quilt in Kaffe's latest book, but then I wandered slightly "off-piste" a little. 
16 patch squares are 31/2” cut, 3” finished, so the blocks are 12” finished,
setting 5 blocks by 5