Saturday 26 March 2022

maggie pearl quilt and binding thoughts

I’m pretty much loving a zingy binding right now. Picking out the binding fabric for a quilt is one of my favourite things in the quilt making process. And then, to be honest, I tend to stall, as actually binding a quilt is not one of my preferred tasks!
My technique has been the same for ages - I cut my binding strips 2.25" and I join my strips with a diagonal seam. I square off my quilt to leave a slight amount of batting along all the edges. The batting excess then gets folded into the binding, making it firm & full and more durable.
I always machine attach my binding to the front and then hand stitch down my binding on the back with a mitred corners. I use a blind stitch where my needle travels through the backing fabric and picks up a bit of the binding fabric. 

I want to try hand stitching to the front with big stitches sometime, any tips? There's a tutorial here on big stitch hand binding, looks interesting.   I'm also keen to try machine sewing my binding to the back first, wrapping it around, and then machine sewing on the front. It sounds like it's a nice, clean look… and fast? I see Rita too has a tutorial here which I need to check out before I actually give this a go.
Maybe if I find a better way to do this part, my quilts could all get finished in a timely manner 🤞

Hm-m-m there are so many lovely binding ideas out there, what's your favourite?   

Quilt details:
"Maggie Pearl" quilt, a free pattern from @penelopehandmade on her website!
A quick & easy project that sure packs a scrappy punch!
I started out using Liberty lawn fabrics 
then added in a few fabrics from The Deco Dance Collection, Liberty by Riley Blake Designs, 
and some Karen Lewis tone-on-tones to balance things out.
Batting: Lately I've been using a wool/polyester mix, 
which {when combined with an open quilting pattern} gives a lovely soft cuddly drape
Machine quilted by me in a zig zag design - it was a little tedious but so so worth it! 
Backing: I stitched together a bundle of FQ into a big 9-patch, a successful use of boring fabrics!
Binding: a three toned blue stripe, Onofrio in Shirt by Giucy Giuce.
Finished quilt top measures: 40" x 56"

I'm very happy to get two small quilts all finished this week. One is off to a new mum-to-be already, the other is waiting patiently to be gifted sometime … and maybe now it's time to start something new? Linking up with Cynthia for 'oh scrap' and with Kelly for NNT 


Thursday 24 March 2022

a quick 'trippy' quilt

Here's what I finished up yesterday - my little 'Trippy' quilt. It was a super quick make. And I'm loving this scrappy delight, the colour combination and the randomness of the design speak to my heart on so many levels.

Nothing shows texture better than quilting, and I am currently exploring more ways to machine quilt my quilts. Right now I’m in love with simple straight-line quilting - I’m not marking any lines, just quilting diagonally through the squares.

Quilt details:
Trippy quilt
Fabrics are a mix of art gallery, AMH, Karen Lewis and a healthy dose of low volumes, 
all from my stash here. 
Inspiration & pattern from southerncharmquilts
The backing is a teal vintage lawn from my stash.
Quilted on my domestic machine with a simple crosshatch.
Wool/polyester batting which {along with an open quilting pattern} gives a lovely soft cuddly drape
Binding: loving the zing of this two toned pink/rose stripe 'sonnet dusk' by Riley Blake
Finished quilt measures 54" x 40". 
This little quilt is off already to it's new home!

Linking up with Kelly for "needle and thread Thursday" here

Monday 21 March 2022

basting day!

I have two recent quilt tops finished that haven't ended up stored away in the UFO wardrobe yet! Both are small & cute, and I decided I could easily turn these tops into quilts. I baste down on the floor, always have, smoothing & checking my layers as I pin baste. But I must admit {wink wink} it's getting trickier as I get older. 

First up, my little quick palette cleanser project from a week or so ago … 'trippy' quilt Inspiration & pattern at Southern Charm Quilts. I've made 2 larger trip around the world quilts in recent years, both gifted now. However, I didn't start this one because I was bursting to make another, but more because I was super keen to try out this soft colour palette, with a healthy dose of low volumes.
I rummaged around in the wardrobe and found a large piece of a delightful vintage lawn, perfect for the backing fabric!

My second little quilt top was my #maggiepearlquilt, a free pattern @penelopehandmade, pieced back in September 2021. 
Do you ever have a pattern or technique that you just needed to try? The 'maggie pearl' was one of those for me! I wanted to try this pattern without committing to a huge quilt. 
I started out using Liberty lawn fabrics then added in a few fabrics from The Deco Dance Collection, Liberty by Riley Blake Designs, and just a few other rogue fabrics from my stash to balance things out.

In case you haven’t figured it out yet, I’m a  straight line machine quilter. I do admire those that create intricate designs, however personally, I really struggle with free motion quilting. I send my larger quilts out for long arm quilting, however, I do quilt my more manageable quilts and they all get lots of straight lines. And usually, each one gets the run- off- the- side thread treatment, where those beginning & end threads get trapped up in the binding for good measure.  
I do also love adding in some big stitch hand quilting to some of my quilts, after all the machine stitching is done. Hand quilting adds such a unique texture, different to machine... and it shows the hand of the individual maker. 

For this one, I opted for piecing my backing. I had a bunch of fat quarters, large print florals that I’ve been hanging onto, and have had a hard time using in projects. But, I realized that pieced together, they would make a lovely, scrappy blue- toned backing for this quilt. So I trimmed off all the selvedges and stitched them together in one big 9-patch, I do love a scrappy back #partyinthequiltback! 

Off now to make a start on some machine quilting, 

Thursday 10 March 2022

trust the process

Here's my March Sawtooth Burst block {+ a little filler block} for the pas de deux QAL,
a modern sampler quilt designed by Rachel at stitchedincolor .

I'm loving all the separate little groups of fabric magic in this QAL,
and playing with colour & value is my "happy" place!  
Each monthly ensemble is composed of two main colours {aka the two main dancers}
and this latest block certainly bursts into life using a range of values to create movement & energy. 

It is a little bit hard though, 
waiting a whole month between block instructions & wondering if this is all going to gel together okay 
- just have to trust the process I guess
The upside is that this quilt will be laced with memories from the whole year!
And I’m enjoying getting to know the other quilters making it too

Meantime {wink wink} I'm sure
I have a few other sewing projects happening around here that I can be busy with! 
Linking up with Kelly for NTT here


Monday 7 March 2022

a quick trip quilt

I'm stuck between things just now, sewjo somewhat lacking, so I decided to try a little quick palette cleanser project. A 'trip around the world' quilt is a very traditional pattern dating back for generations. Often there are planned chains of colour forming darker diagonals to emphasise a diamond shape. 
I think this version has a little bit more of a modern look, more of an "anything goes" look, with no real cohesion running through the blocks, but you can still see the vague diamond shapes.

I have made two larger trippy quilts in recent years, both gifted now. However, I didn't start this project because I was bursting to make another TATW quilt, no no no, but more because I was really keen to see how these pretty colours all played together.
I spent a bit of time collecting my fabrics together and began cutting & sewing … I've upped the proportion of light value fabrics, more than I usually would have put in a quilt like this.  And, I'm repeating combinations that appeal to me.  I plan on making a further eight 1/2 blocks* to go across the top & bottom to keep things symmetrical & to make it just a tad bigger, perfect for a little cot quilt I think. 

I'm super happy with this scrappy delight, the colour combination and the randomness of the design speak to my heart on so many levels.

* updated pic

Inspiration & pattern from Melanie at southerncharmquilts
Linking up with Cynthia for 'oh scrap' here

Until next time, Linda

Tuesday 1 March 2022



- reshuffling blocks around down on the design floor

- cutting into a few early Denyse Schmidt fabrics, 
love how they add to the vintage vibe

- on the bed in the afternoon sunshine

Super happy with this scrapalicious quilt top! I was going for 56 blocks, but I realised that because I'd enlarged the pattern a smidgeon, my quilt was a good size with 36 blocks, yes! 

Sewing the blocks was easy peasey, it was choosing fabrics and the cutting that took me a little time. 
There were a few things I was mindful of as I chose my fabrics for this … as my centre squares were all a teal/green solid, I wanted a good proportion of my other fabrics to have some teal and/or green too, to tie up with those centres.
Also, because my stash is predominantly medium value florals, I wanted to make sure I had a good mix of spots & plaids and lights & darks to ensure some contrast was happening.
Yet again my obsession with collecting spots and stripes has paid off. Highly recommend the practice! 

My finished quilt top measures approx. 70" x 58". Pop over here to see lots of other versions. Pattern available at treehousetextiles.