Monday 23 May 2022

decisions decisions

Hello hello. If you pop by often, you will already know that I tend to just jump right in with the quilts that I start, A. Lot. Of. The. Time, and this time is no different!

A few weeks ago I started out with a fabric pull, one that I've been slowly adding to as it sat here on my table. I decided that my main colours would be pink, brown and dark blue. So that quickly sorted out my cohesive "planned part".  

But as to the direction part? I had in mind to make a 'granny square' quilt, similar to those crocheted granny square blankets, {wink wink} everything old is new again! 
However, once I started googling I found ideas... too many ideas actually... turns out there's quite a few ways I could approach this! Square or on point? Using individual squares or adopting the strip piecing method? With sashing or without?  Can you relate?

Inspired by Jaynes 'Great Granny' quilt {that I spotted here at Jaynes Quilting Room} I jumped right in over the weekend and started to play with these fabrics.
First up, a 'Granny Square' block {free tutorial over at blueelephantstitches} and then I made up a 'Sassy Granny' block with scrappy background, pattern from 'Anthology' QAL I did a couple of years ago. 
I am very happy with how these fabrics combine together, but truth be told, I wasn’t loving either of these trial blocks once I'd made them up.

Then I got sidetracked slightly, and wondered about using these same fabrics in another scrappy trip quilt instead? After all, all three of my previous TATW quilts have now been gifted. Maybe I need to make one every year or so, it is such an enjoyable quilt to make.

My design wall is full of trial blocks, and strips, and squares oh my!

Still very undecided which way to go. 
But I'll be super happy if I can salvage this idea with a few thoughtful changes, so I'll persevere.
'Cos I really do want to make a granny quilt now - of some kind! 

Friday 20 May 2022

bookclub tonight!

Looking forward to bookclub tonight.
Here's a few recent reads - some good, one not so good.

I enjoyed this big family saga about parents David and Marilyn - still madly in love after 40yrs - and their four daughters. It’s a lengthy book that explores family love, romantic love, sisterly devotion and dysfunction set in Chicagoland... and, it covers all the seven deadly sins into a fun and brimming tale of an unapologetically bourgeois couple and their unruly daughters. Beautiful writing & great character development.

* * * *

I loved this one! The Spy's Wife by Fiona McIntosh was a great read. From the wide swept moors of the Yorkshire dales to the noisy beer halls of Munich, this is a lively thriller that kept me second guessing until the end.

Fiona's tale "follows stationmaster’s daughter Evie Armstrong who meets and falls in love with the mysterious Max, who often passes through her northern England station, in 1936. The pair become engaged in days and just as their happiness knows no bounds Max is arrested as a German spy. Evie convinces the British government to let them establish themselves in Munich, with herself acting the part of the perfect German wife in a bid to find evidence of Germany’s escalation to war".
* * * *

Sara Foster’s The Hush, is set in a post-covid world. It's a dystopian (new age sci-fi) novel that is highly believable in many aspects. We find ourselves in the near future England where, seven years after covid, everyone is also dealing with rising sea levels and floods caused by climate change.
There are new laws to govern everyone. Being monitored by the government with smart watches and with babies not breathing after birth, the country has been thrown into turmoil as several pregnant teenagers have vanished. I'm sure it will capture your interest and keep you guessing.

I have to admit though, I'm not sure about how I feel about this novel, it's unsettling to say the least, and I'm hoping to discuss this one at length at bookclub tonight.
*UPDATE: conversation was interesting and we were very divided on this one. 

* * * *

This is an intriguing psychological thriller from Jean Hanff Korelitz that immerses the reader into the world of writers and publishing, an area totally foreign to me.

Jacob Finch Bonner has a well received published book behind him but has been unable to get much attention for his further attempts at the next great novel. Years later he's still struggling, working at jobs connected to writing, becoming the cliché of "those who can, do, those who can't, teach".
Then he encounters Evan Parker, who has a story that's going to be The. Next. Best. Seller. A few years later, when Evan dies before getting around to writing his novel, Jacob steals his idea.

Who owns the plot to a story? There's a real underlying tension throughout the book, and I was curious to see how things panned out in the end.
* * * *

Do you think you know your neighbors? A shooting lays bare the secrets harboured by five families in a sleepy suburban cul-de-sac in this riveting psychological thriller from Joy Fielding. Everyone in this story has secrets and everyone is pretending to be something they’re not.

Happy reading, Linda

Wednesday 18 May 2022

daylesford quilt

- progress collage

- a little binding collage showing fabric detail, use & scale

Another recent 'finish' is my Daylesford quilt. It was like following a fun wandering path as I went around and around, it's the largest log cabin I’ve ever made! I used a mix of fabrics - all from my stash - in mellow colours of peachy-pinks blues & browns with "pops" of mustard, including Outback Wife fabrics, Karen Lewis and a little bit of Liberty.

I chose a wide backing fabric, Tula Pink Wonder cotton sateen, so silky and so soft. I had Leeanne from quiltmekiwi machine quilt this for me. I chose an e2e quilting design called 'ikat' - such great texture. 
For the binding I went with a sweet itty bitty print, AGF Mayfair in Promenade Plum. 

Finished size approx. 60" x 60" - a tad smaller than the original, but I'm happy. Thanks for stopping by, Linda

Thursday 12 May 2022

crossroads quilt

- progress collage

- a little binding collage showing fabric detail, use & scale

And, we’re done! My ‘Crossroads’ quilt, {pattern from Treehouse Textiles} is a delightfully scrappy quilt, with a real vintage vibe. I've included some of my favourite fabrics from several years of stash building in this quilt!

For my backing I chose a wide quilt back, Ruby Star 'shell' in cotton sateen. It's so soft & silky, and makes for a super light weight quilt. 
Home quilting every quilt I make is proving tricky so I had Leeanne from quiltmekiwi machine quilt this one. I chose in an edge-to-edge pattern called 'ripples', and am very happy with the result. There's a gentle texture while still showing off the quilt design. 
The binding was a tad difficult to chose, but I ended up with an Alison Glass tone-on-tone blues. Blue seems to go with most things I sew, and with this quilt I felt it reflected the teal in my centre squares nicely and highlighted the blues in the backing fabric. My finished quilt measures approx. 70" x 58".
Linking up with Kelly for NNT here and with Cynthia over here for 'oh scrap'.

Until next time, Linda

Tuesday 10 May 2022

finally... binding time

- progress collage

My Bear Paw quilt is finally done! I was really wanting this one to look vintage (as if you had pulled it from your grandmother’s closet) so I started out with a very pretty bundle of vintage blooms, "Posy" FQ's by Annabel Wrigley and I teamed them up with different neutral backgrounds. A real scrappy spin on a classic block!

I made 14.5” Bear Paw blocks set with 2.5” sashing strips & a wider border in several off white/greys. {The Fat Quarter Shop has a free pattern for the Bear Paw block}. For backing, I used the sweetest backing fabric 'head in the clouds' by Windham and my binding was a scrappy selection of leftover 'posy' fabrics.
I had it quilted by Leeanne from quiltmekiwi, and I chose an edge to edge Baptist Fan, super happy with the look. Finished quilt measures 56" x 56".
Until next time, Linda

Sunday 1 May 2022

colour on the wall

- auditioning setting triangles and binding

- most of my piecing is done with off-white or light grey thread, 
so I had to rummage around to find colourful threads to match my ric-rac trims

I've been faffing around this weekend with my "Tickety - Boo" quilt blocks up on the design wall, making a few more and reshuffling things around. I'm running out of those colourful Jennifer Paganelli fabrics now, {wink wink} so I have repeated a couple.
Such a fun quilt to make. Adding the ric-rac trim makes machine sewing those curves a breeze and adds that special touch of nostalgic whimsy. 

I just need an hour or two to get it all stitched up together, but super happy meantime having all this joyful colour up on my design wall.

Linking up with Cynthia for 'oh scrap' here and with Kelly for NTT over here - grab a coffee & pop on over to see what everyone else has been busy making too.