Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Less like a manhole cover



At the risk of being arrogant or whatever, I have to say, I really like this piece. It just kind of sprung, perhaps not fully formed, but at least partially formed, from my head, told me what it wanted, and then, just kinda happened (ok, I confess, I had a hard time putting it down). I did most of the rest of the quilting on it this morning - the centre and two of the corners (the lighter two ones, in a purple variegated) and had to set it aside, so we could go out while the cleaners came (we were actually planning to go out anyway, as it happens). But then, when we got back from a day swimming at the cool pool with all the slides and running errands in Guildford, Sarah vanished off to the park with a friend and Alex and Olivia went off to play a computer game, so, not having to produce dinner (a quick survey of kids produced the result that they didn't care and would happily eat cold cereal) meant I could slip upstairs and work more. So I did - finished the quilting on the other two corners - this time with plain purple rayon (this not so much because of any design theory, but because I was worried there wouldn't be enough purple variegated left to finish - and two corners of each is balanced, whereas three and one looks like I ran out of thread...)



Here she is after quilting - as you can see, I decided to go with the basket weave type stitch in the background - I like it - adds texture without being too obtrusive and works fairly well around curves. I also decided to trim the piece more or less on centre (despite what it may look like from the angle of the photo) - it's 21 inches square - technically, it's only supposed to be 20, but it seemed a shame to lose that extra inch, so I'm going to sneak it in anyway.

A bit later in the evening, Sarah came back to the house with her friend Jess asking if she could stay for dinner, so I decided perhaps they should have some proper food after all (or semi-proper, anyway), so I sent them down to the chippie. Hey, it's summer, a little slack can be cut. Though I think next week will involve large quantities of veg. In the end, Jess stayed for a sleepover (one does wonder why we call them that - they mostly seem to involve very little sleep) as DH is away anyway, so it doesn't matter if they stay up late giggling - I'm a night owl anyway, and there's no way they are going to disturb Geoff all the way out in Oxford. But the good thing about the sleepover is that the three of them just went off and did stuff. [I actually really like having Jess over, partly because she's a nice girl, but also because she is very happy to include Olivia in most of the games they play, which certainly makes my life a lot easier - Sarah is more willing to be tolerant of her ltitle sister if her friend initiates it, than if I ask her to include Olivia...]

All of which left me free to embellish. I told Alex I'd watch a film with him before he went to bed, so he picked out Pippi Longstocking, surprisingly - I rather thought I was going to have to sit through half a dozen episodes of Power Rangers - and we sat companionably while I laid out buttons on the top trying to get the balance right. [A note to Helen here, if she's reading - as it happened, I actually had another large packet of lime green buttons, so I haven't had to use up all the ones from you, but I did use some, to get the sizes right...]



The main problem with laying out buttons on the quilt until you are happy is that once you have all the buttons laid out on the quilt, it's virtually impossible to begin to sew them down without messing up your layout! At least, it is until you remember you have glue dots in your house. God bless glue dots. Anyway, did the buttons and the large rings in the centre and corner, then put Alex to bed, put on something more interesting to mummy, and moved on to embellishing the little circles.



I've tried to do this in a way that shows the background fabric of the little circles, and I think it's worked. The only circle I didn't embellish is the one that looks like a button - this is actually a tiny scrap of a sunprinted fabric (sunprinted with buttons, that is). Anyway, I'm really pleased with how it's come out - now it needs a sleeve and binding and a label - but not tonight.

Tomorrow, we have NO PLANS, which is great - Sarah asked if she and Jess can just sleep in late and then hang out (duh - um, yes please) so I'm going to sort Alex out with something or other to do and then - yep, you guessed it - SEW. And first order of business is I'm really going to finish that blessed bag. And then, I've just remembered, I have a set of "T is for..." postcards which need to go out by Friday. I'm doing free motion trees (yeah, I knew that would shock you). So sue me - I like free motion trees...





13 comments:

rlbates said...

I like this block a lot too, Kate! Good work.

Vicki W said...

I like this a lot! What a great Mother - you have trained the children to think cereal for dinner is a treat!

jovaliquilts said...

I absolutely love this piece! Thanks for all the detailed photos.

Joyce said...

IT's looking better and better. I think cold cereal is fine for dinner once in awhile and it's a big treat for the cook.

Wil Opio Oguta said...

Kate, I like this piece a lot! Well done.

WinterStar said...

Oh, Kate, what a beautiful idea and how it looks lovely! Great choice of color, too (actually I'm very partial to green and purple...)!!!
How lucky will be your swap-partner!!!

Gina said...

I love the quilt. Thank you for walking us through it.
Lucky you getting time to sew these hols. I've got hubby home aswell so we have to 'do something' everyday.

Love and hugs Gina xxx

Clare said...

I love this - well done. How far ar eyou from Guildford? We used to live between Guildford and Horsham (Cranleigh).

Karol-Ann said...

Can I assume this is your BS? It's great!!

Emma said...

There's nothing arrogant about liking what you're making! Despite my hate of buttons, I really like this one, too!

Needle and Thread said...

I just like your quilt and quilting a lot. Thanks for all the close up pictures.

Sew Create It - Jane said...

Fab!..Only you could turn the inspiration of a manhole cover into a beautiful piece of art! I just love how you keep adding bits and embellishments...sounds like a very freeing way to quilt.

Papoosue said...

I LOVE this piece. It's just so HAPPY!