Friday, 24 October 2014

Blogger's Quilt Festival

The time has come again for Amy's Creative Side's Blogger's Quilt Festival once again. It corresponds with Quilt Market and happens twice a year (just in case you are new to this blogging online quilting community). It is a brilliant way to see what people have been making over the past six months, get inspiration, or - if you are like me - be left in jaw dropping envy at the skill of other quilters out there in the world.

So take some time to click the link and see what other's have been up to. It is a wonderful way to lose a few hours, or more.

I've had a think about what I wish to enter this time around, and have made my first choice. My Hex-a-Mini.

I made this mini on a whim. Fussy cutting appears often in my quilting, and I am known to like a hexie or two. I wanted to make a hexie quilt with the machine though. So I used my Go! Baby to cut the hexies and the triangles and the piecing went together like a charm. Not a 'Y' seam was encountered anywhere in the making of this mini.

I quilted the low volume areas in a tiny stipple, leaving the stars to stand out without any quilting on them at all. The white border was quilted in a slightly bigger stipple and a yellow thread to soften it a little.

The sashing, backing and binding were all in shades of blue as there was no darker blue in the mini rainbow of stars. It finished at 18.5"x 20.5" and it just makes me happy when I look at it.

I think this mini very much encapsulates so much of what my style is with quilting - if I have a style that is.

If you have stopped by my blog for the first time from the quilt festival thank you for doing so. If you would like to see other things I have made there are tabs on my header that will give you a quick review. I can also be found on Instagram. I am canadianabroad there too.

I hope you enjoy the Blogger's Quilt Festival as much as I do.


Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Nothing Like Good Service

I've been busy lately. Time has been filled with real life money earning stuff that I don't talk about here on the blog. Mostly because it is boring, necessary but still boring. So while I do what needs doing I've been thinking about projects I have coming up and I knew I needed some fabric, and I needed it quickly.

So I emailed Tracey and Natalie, the lovely sisters behind Pin It & Stitch, and told them what I needed. Without looking at their new and well laid out website once myself. They emailed me back what they thought best suited my needs. I said yes please.

They know what I like and understood what I needed this time round, and got the fabric pull perfect. And I have totally fallen in love with the navy one, with the rocket ships and solar system drawings on it. It is such an awesome shade of navy, just right. And anyone looking at making a boy quilt like I am then take a look at the prints in Rocket Age by Riley Blake.

And a boy quilt is what I am planning - minus the hot pink feathers, which may have snuck into the order just because I love them.

The point of this post is we are all busy people. The value of a fabric shop that provides good online service should never be underestimated. We all know some. We also know the shops that fail to see the immense need of a good website. (Does everyone else just refuse to buy from places that have crap websites that are impossible to negotiate your way around?) And the shops that take their time sending out orders, pack them haphazardly and - one of my huge pet hates - rip instead of cut your fabric order. I know, I know, ripping is traditional but you should have seen my face a couple of years ago when I received a whole FQ bundle where every piece had been ripped. I was so not impressed.

I buy 95% of my fabric from about a half dozen shops. I do so because of the selection and prices, but most of all I do it because of the service. So thank you, Tracey and Natalie, for saving me time that I couldn't spare and for getting it so right. Oh, and thanks for making me want to order the rest of your yardage of that navy solar print.


Monday, 20 October 2014

The HST Glut Is Further Reduced

I looked at my sewing space today and my eyes landed on yet more HSTs that were a bi-product from projects long since finished. Today I tackled more of the Denyse Schmidt HSTs leftover from the Fruit Loops quilt I made for my niece.

Still on yesterday's no pinning kick I made quick work of sewing them together in a replica of a cushion I made from this same HST glut before the summer holidays.

I am finding my ability to get points to match is about equal without pins as it was with pins - in other words some thrill my heart and others I glare at in outrage. This doesn't mean that there aren't times when pins are essential in my sewing but it does prove to me that I may not have to use them as much as I have previously, and it is mind boggling how much time is saved when you don't bother.

I started this project about 11:30am and it was finished by 2pm. This is great for me as I can usually make a project drag out for days, if not weeks, months, and occasionally years.

This cushion will be a house warming gift for a friend of mine on the Isle of Wight. I backed it with some pink corduroy I had leftover from the recent LPQ quilt. As per usual, I whack the zipper in as a colour 'feature' rather than trying to hide it. I like the bold bit of colour slashing across the back. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

I've an idea of what I want to tackle tomorrow. I am a little behind in the gift making department. And the bee block making too. Let's see how much time the world allows me to belly up to my machine and just get on with it.


Sunday, 19 October 2014

Don't Tell The Quilt Police!

I had a lot of the 'necessary' to do today so when I finally had some spare time to sew I wasn't in the mood for rules. I just wanted to play. So I picked up the HSTs that were offcuts from Paper Snowflakes and chose a pattern I liked. And I pieced. I just sewed those little buggers together, without pinning or pausing.

This was about relaxing and enjoying myself, not about perfect points. Some of them worked out fine, but others? Well, just don't look too closely.

Don't get me wrong. If this was for someone else, I would have been taking it a lot more seriously and done my best to get those points just right. But this was for me, for fun. Perfection wasn't on my list of requirements at all.

Once I piece this cushion cove to be, I dug around for some backing fabric, and instead found some fusible fleece. Excellent as that meant no need for fabric to back the block. Quilting commenced forthwith.

A quick spiral, where I got the centre right for the first time ever. I drew on the start of the spiral with a water soluble pen and stitched the beginning with my free motion foor, the one with the open front so I could switch over to my walking foot when I had enough of a start. Why have I never done this before? Why?!

Despite a weekend of doing 'real' work (Ha! Like motherhood and sewing isn't enough.) it was nice to get some fabric time in. It's good for the soul.


Saturday, 18 October 2014

Paper Snowflakes

Two fabrics in a quilt. Only two fabrics in a quilt. And those fabrics being solids. This is so out of my comfort zone, which is usually the school of  'the more you throw at it the merrier mode of sewing'.

But I am happy that I stepped out of my comfort zone. Paper Snowflakes measures up at approximately 78" square. I have an idea for the backing. The question of how to quilt it on my domestic machine is boggling my mind though.