Tuesday 26 July 2011

Finds At the Bottom of the Fabric Heap

You would think that being alone would spark a huge surge of creative energy in me and I would be able to show you all the things that I have done today. Or not, as the case may be.

After spending yesterday evening battle the invasion of the flying ants I knew that today would involve a trip to town to purchase ant killing potions. I don't do flying insects. I really, really  hate them. I come from a country that has fly screens on the windows and doors so an invasion of flying insects in my house really freaks me out. So to town I went this morning.

Three hours later I had the ant poison. I also had five new tops and a cardigan! Now that I call a successful shopping trip. Once I started I just couldn't stop, and this is the woman who hates buying clothes for herself - mainly due to changing rooms, full length mirrors and possessing a body not to the standard proportions of any clothing size. Not sure what got into me today - but I like it!

Home again. Lunch, then a little mooch at the computer and suddenly there was an order of more perle cotton being ordered, and two fabric orders confirmed in my email. I think it might be dangerous to leave me alone! Next I got chatting online to Kat of Mumma's Time to Create in Perth, Australia. Turns out she had been doing what I had been doing. Turning out her fabric stash and having a sort. Here's what my hallway currently looks like. The space in the centre is where I sat while I sorted. And where I have to return to finish the job.

Turns out that Kat has the same problem as me. Ugly fabric. Bought in those early days when we didn't know what we liked yet and were swung by a good deal rather than common sense. We had an ugly fabric contest, sending each other photos. I thought mine was bad. But Kat won. She has one fabric which beat the rest hands down. It is ugly! I am going to send her more photos of mine and she is going to choose some and I will send them to her. In return she is going to send me some of hers. Is this the first official online ugly fabric swap?

When we have done giving each other our unwanted fabric I am going to post some on here and let any of you who see a use for it have a chance of getting some. I gave some to Fiona weeks back as she said she was doing a quilt for charity and she could easily use the FQs I had posted. So if you think you know what to do with dull as dishwater fabrics, stay tuned.

Other than shop, kill ants, mess up the hallway and play on the computer you might be left thinking that I haven't got anything done. But in the hauling out of fabric I found this -

A disappearing nine patch quilt top that I noticed when one of the pins still stuck in it got me as I dug around. I have some sashing pinned on. Only sewn on one side so far and the rest of it cut. When did I make this and why did I abandon it? I don't have a clue. But it is quite pretty and is a good size for a baby quilt so I got it out to finish.

I also found an old beach sarong while I got my fabric out. It wasn't mine originally. It might have been from my  mother-in-law. She is always gifting me with fabric to 'help with my sewing'. My MIL is a lovely lady but some of these fabrics have been of very questionable content and I don't think that cotton was even thought of in the manufacture of it. But this sarong was 100% cotton and as soon as I saw it I knew what I was going to do with it. So this -

Became this in about an hour and a half of cutting and sewing -

And the top is reversible so that the paler blues are on the other side.

It isn't easy to see but there are the little outlines of starfish in silver all over the fabric. It is super soft and should make a very comfie top for Emily. It will be a surprise for her when they get home from Brownie Camp. Now I must think of something to make for Helen.

Next thing on the agenda is to make two blocks for Caroline over at the Contented Quilter. She is making some quilts to raise money for cancer research and is asking for 8" blocks with appliqued hearts on them to put together and make the quilts. She would like to be able to have these quilts finished in August so I want to get them posted to her before we leave on holiday. I have the eight inch squares in white cut out. Now just have to choose the heart fabrics. Not the ugly ones!

I am coping with the quiet. Keeping busy and having some fun too (shopping). Tomorrow I need to focus more so I can complete everything that I wanted to this week. So enough time at the computer for me. Time to cut out some hearts.



  1. Pretty top - I'm sure Emily will love it!
    It must have been a 'good' day for flying ants because we were infested too - loads of them!!
    Can I ask where you're buying your perle cotton from? I can't find any locally so I'm going to look online!

  2. I love that top in blue - very stylish indeed! I always feel tremendously guilty on the creativity front when I`ve read your blog. Tomorrow I have to do something but Zaki will have other ideas, me thinks.

  3. I feel very slow when I read your blog! You are certainly way speedier than I am. I am always losing and re-finding fabric, as it is not kept all in one place but tucked away in various hidey holes - some out of necessity, and some out of guilt!

    Pomona x

  4. Your D9P quilt top was a lovely find! I'm starting up a charity Bee group in my area in Sept., so any donations of fabric (ugly or otherwise) would be gratefully received!

  5. Sounds like you've had a fantastic day, one that you'll feel the benefit of for a whole lot longer too :-) Yay!

  6. The f'ugly fabric buying must be part of the 'journey', I have some real weird ones I must have thought were a bit 'wacky and modern'!

    Nice sarong to top move!

    Oh quick, don't move, what's that, just there, behind you, wings and loads of legs!?????

  7. Ants and spiders risk losing their lives when they invade my space! The D9P quilt is very pretty, and would make a great baby quilt.

  8. Thank you for blogging about my heart appeal, I really appreciate it. The quilt top looks fab and I love the 'sarong' top gorgeous effect with those colours.

  9. Lovely little top you made there. I think out tastes change all the while with regard to fabrics. Before I started buying fabric online my own source of fabric was bricks and mortar quilt shops, which as well as being few and far between, tend to stock more traditional fabric lines. That said I think there is rarely truly ugly fabric. It's what you do with it that counts. Like wise beautiful fabric can easily be ugly if used in the wrong way.

  10. I think I'll be the judge of who has the ugliest fabric. Isnt it interesting that we all have a little of that sort of stuff in our respective stashes?

    The way I see it the ant invasion was a blessing in disguise - you got to clothes shop!

    I de-stashed a while back. It's such a great feeling. Have fun finishing yours!

  11. We've got those ants here, gross! Love the second make of the Butterick top...do you think an adult could get away with a top that style? I really like it, but I think my love handles may disagree :) x

  12. Clothes shopping is always best when unintended! Your little top is gorgeous :-)

  13. I love the fabrics in your D9P quilt top - can't wait to see how you finish it. I'm sure your fabrics are not as ugly as you think they are.

    It brings back all kind of fond laugh-out-loud memories of swapping ugly fabric with you.
    I would just like to clarify for everyone that the fabric which blew all Susan's uglies out of the water was NOT a piece that I'd purchased! LOL...

  15. It sounds like you have been having a fun and productive day! As for lunch....it is so easy/fun to shop on the internet! Love the top out of the blue and your disappearing 9 patch looks great because all the colors blend so well.

  16. Thanks a bunch for stopping by my blog! You have such a fun blog to read- I am SO a product of ugly fabric shopping. I finally de-cluttered my ugly fabric a bit by making some donation quilts for my sister and her three friends who were in a fatal car accident (the driver, an old boyfriend of my sis's was killed after he fell asleep at the wheel on their way to San Francisco) I love 'ugly quilts' that are mismatched in color and texture. My grandparents made me an ugly quilt (seriously, old circus fabric from Wal-Mart was on there...) after I had major neck surgery last year and it is one of my favorites (it got barfed on and I didn't freak out because, hey, it's ugly!) Anyway, that's my take on ugly fabrics. Sorry for the long comment- I will be stopping by here more often. Happy Sewing!


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