Saturday, 8 December 2012

Too hot to handle!

Now that summer has arrived in Perth I realise that my celtic quilt is just too big to quilt in this hot weather and so I need to have some light hand work that I can take to my sewing groups. So I have unearthed a UFO which has been sitting in the bottom of my UFO box for ages waiting for me to get my enthusiasm back. I have been paper cutting blocks that are symbolic of my family and wanted to do a family tree for the central panel. After looking through Google images (what a resource!) I found inspiration and got out the paper and scissors... 

 The idea is to put the six family blocks at each side in two rows. 

 Now to get sewing ....

Monday, 26 November 2012

A Nice Day

I've just got my 'Baby Baltimore' Quilt back. I left it in the Uk to put it into the Sandown Show this summer and a friend visiting Perth has brought it home. So it's the first time I've seen it in a year (also the first time I've seen the 3rd Place Rosette....)!
It measures 24" x 24" and is all by  hand.
Good to have it home again...

On that happy note I decided to have a full sewing day and managed to quilt my kangaroo Quilt using the Helen Godden technique for raw edge applique. Very effective but quick to do (only started the whole thing yesterday!)

Friday, 23 November 2012

Quirky Quilters Xmas Quilt

The Quirky Quilters Xmas Quilt - We all made two plus blocks and our leader (Susan) put it all together and did the quilting.
Now trying to find a worthy home for it....
(mine are the tree in the bottom Rt, the star in the bottom Lft and the heart & holly wreath in the 4th row down)

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Second One Block Wonder

I began another kaleidoscope quilt when I was at the retreat last weekend and have started making the cubes to randomly scatter across the quilt. I still need to place all the hexagons and cubes in the right places but it's taking shape already and looks quite effective. Black borders will also make a huge difference.
This is becoming addictive!

I've also just made myself an extra large design wall which is essential for this type of quilt - light plastic panels from the DIY store taped together and covered with flanneling. Works a treat!

Forgot to show my first OBW with it's borders attached and the original fabric above.

Monday, 12 November 2012

Shoalwater Retreat

Have just come back from the waqa committee retreat at Shoalwater. It was a lovely spot, close to the beach and set in tranquil gardens. The facilities were good and we sewed from early morning till late into the night ......

 The 'school' photo.

Gwen hard at work

Show and Tell Time

                Bonding session with my new best friend, Lorraine

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

One Block Wonder

Bought the fabric for this kaleidoscope quilt a few weeks ago and have been dying to have a go. It is amazing that it is made from one piece of fabric which is cut up and sewn together again in such a way as to form different kaleidoscopes (from the book One Block Wonders). I want to make another one already!
I'll always be on the look out for large patterned fabric now, every time I visit a quilt shop......

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

In Print!


My Millennium Quilt made it into 'Australian Patchwork & Quilting' magazine! Fame of sorts.....

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Quilting Heaven!

Am loving quilting my batik quilt and the interlocking circle design has fitted perfectly...

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Progress on the Celtic Knot Quilt

Have been busy lately with trying to get my Celtic blocks finished and although I've had my quilt plan ready for ages I couldn't make the final decision on how to set the blocks.
After playing with my new EQ7 programme I went back to the old plan that used good old paper, pencils and calculator.

Once I started putting it together the fabric took over and although I didn't intend to make a purple quilt somehow this happened!

I'm really pleased how it all went together, as I had made my calculations months ago but just took a deep breath and made the patterns - then amazingly all the pieces went together perfectly without any squeezing or stretching!

Now to hand quilt it ready for next year's show.....

Have also changed my sewing room - I realised that my cosy corner of the bedroom was just not big enough so have decamped to the games room downstairs and can now make even more mess than before.

I even found a use for the pool table which makes a great cutting table (covered with a board, of course!)

I also discovered my miniature quilts that have been lying, forgotten, in the bottom of a drawer!

Monday, 17 September 2012

Ricky Tims came to Perth!

Spent a very enjoyable weekend at a two day seminar with Ricky Tims. He is such a great teacher and entertainer and we all came away inspired to be a bit more adventurous with our quilt making. I really loved the idea of his caveman quilts using curved lines and off centre placement. The Rhapsody quilts are stunning but seemed to be a challenge until Ricky's clear instructions persuaded us that we might be able to attempt one!
So I'll have to put all the UFO's back in the cupboard again so I can start on a convergence quilt using that tie and dyed fabric I made years ago and never knew what to do with!

Monday, 13 August 2012

Another UFO finished!

Have managed to get my 'In The Pink' quilt finished at last. I pieced and quilted it all on the machine - half on my old Pfaff (difficult...) and half on my new Horizon (a breeze!) Am slowly getting better at free motion quilting and now understand that it's all about practice, practice and more practice!

I know I've got a way to go but at least I can say I can do it fairly well!

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

New Arrival!

At last I made the decision to buy the Horizon after having my eye on it for the last 6 months!
I always procrastinate where spending money is concerned but was jogged into it after chatting to a friend who has a 'sweet sixteen' model (drool) and admitted she also has a long arm machine with frame in her basement that she never uses! That seemed like the height of spendthriftness to me and made my little purchase more acceptable....
so off I went to the shop...
Have been happily experimenting today on one of my UFOs and it seems to be working well.

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Being Busy

Have been busy putting a quilt top together for my son - I intended it to be a lap quilt/bed throw but somehow it just needed those big black borders and it grew and grew! The pattern is the 3 Dudes jelly Roll pattern but I just cut my own strips.
It will be a challenge to machine quilt on my Pfaff!

 I've also been tidying up my scrap bag after inspiration from the book 'Cutting the Scraps' which recommends cutting scraps into 2", 3&1/2" and 5" squares. At first glance this seemed a bit random but the logic is that two 2" squares sewn together can be joined to the 3 & 1/2" square and three 2" squares sewn together can make a 9 patch to join onto the 5" square. Clever!

Last but not least...
I had a pile of very large floor cushions in our TV room waiting to be covered and someone gave me a great idea for NO SEWING covers.
Take 2 squares of Polar Fleece fabric, cut approximately 4" larger than the cushion.
Lay the fleece wrong sides facing each other and the cushion sandwiched between.

Rotary cut slits along all the edges up to the cushion (aprox 1" apart)
Tie all the strips together to close the edge. Done!

Monday, 16 July 2012

Crazy Garden label

A quilt isn't finished till it's labelled and so I've done my crazy garden label.
Making a label can't be easier since I read somewhere recently that you can print onto ordinary fabric using a home printer (I always thought you needed that expensive printer fabric for photos).
You can only use the black printer ink as colours will run so I usually use coloured pens to fill in details or (as on this one) applique on top to give some colour.
Here's how..
Cut a piece of freezer paper to A4 size. Iron onto (without steam) a same size piece of fabric as you would do when doing freezer paper applique. This will give you a stiff sheet of fabric which you can load (carefully!) into your printer tray.
To make the design I use WordArt on my computer but a simple label can be made using any text programme. Clipart (black and white) is good for adding details and frames etc.
Then just print.....
I let it dry for a few minutes then iron with a very hot iron, soak in hot water to check it doesn't run and dry and iron again.

Friday, 13 July 2012

Crazy Garden Finished!

It's a great feeling having put the last stitch in my 'Crazy garden' Quilt. I started it in February 2011 when I was stuck in a hotel apartment for 4 months and needed some hand work to do. It's all needle turned applique and hand quilted so that's not bad going!

Now I can get on with my batik Celtic knot quilt without feeling guilty and allow the scarred quilting fingers to heal!

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Picture Quilt

Have done two more panels now and have just got the centre three to go. Slow but sure....

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Leah Day

Decided to join in with Leah Day's Free Motion Quilt-along. We have to make a batch of wonky squares ready to put together next Wednesday. I forced myself to go scrappy and pick out any bright fabric from my stash - some that have been stuck there for years. Despite misgivings I think they are rather nice blocks. I really want to be able to quilt well on the machine so this will be good practice for me and a way to learn some of Leah's lovely free motion designs.

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Doll Quilt Win

Just heard that my 'Baby Baltimore' doll quilt got 3rd place at the National Quilt Championships at Sandown (UK) in the Miniature/Doll Quilt Category!

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

More fabric crafts...

I saw a neat idea today for a sewing machine mat/organiser which is great for taking along to workshops and sewing sessions (I always forget my seam ripper or clippers at home).
So I just had to make one....

1. Take 2 fat quarters and batting the same size.
2. Quilt as desired
3. Bind the lower edge and then turn up 5-6 inches  to form the pockets.
4 Bind the remaining 3 edges.

I've had that fat quarter printed with a sewing tool design for years just waiting for the right project!

Saturday, 16 June 2012

Bag Lady!

Once you start on something it's hard to stop... saw this pattern for another bag. Perfect for carrying that mug to WAQ meetings and workshops (and I even have space for my teabags and cuppa-soup packets!)

AND my machine stippling is getting better!

 And here's another mug bag I've made in a different style - someone tell me to stop!

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Finished the bag!

Finished the bag yesterday and I'm quite pleased with it - the instructions were spot on and it all went together easily. I'll make another in more tasteful colours next time....

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Picture Quilt

 I've been working on a design for a pieced picture quilt since last year but have been putting it off because I wasn't sure how to tackle the sewing part. I have a design programme that enables you to take your photo and break it up into units (The computer doesn't do it for you - you have to draw the lines you want to use) and so I had the templates and colour charts all ready.

I thought I would need to use paper piecing but it  was just too complicated and some units didn't work with that technique, so went back to the old paper templates and rotary cutter to cut it out.

I was really pleased with the result (see the photos where I've laid the finished unit over the paper pattern) It went together really quickly on my machine.

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Making Bags

My Wednesday quilting group are making bags using texture magic. We had a race to each complete a (large!) patchwork panel which has shrunk down to almost nothing! Next week we will be constructing the bag and will let you know how it turns out....

Saturday, 2 June 2012


When does a UFO (unfinished object) become a WIP (Work in progress)?
In the hope that I can get some UFOs finished, or at least to be given the light of day, I've made a list of them at the bottom of the side bar.
I hope to get this paper cut quilt finished eventually as it has been sitting in my cupboard for a number of years. I did a few more stitches on it whilst doing duty at Quilt West last week. Maybe it will be ready for next year's show....
Then there is the problem of all those W.I.M.Bs (Works In My Brain) that are begging to be started....

Monday, 28 May 2012

Quilt West

 Some views of the quilt show.

Look at the Quilt West page to see a selection of my favourite quilts....

The community quilts table - members of WAQ make a huge number of quilts each year that are donated to Perth based charities.