Sunday, June 28, 2009

BQL Challenge

So, here's what I did today - after spending ages thinking I had plenty of time to do this in June, I realised that June is quickly running out and I really should get started. It's a small piece, maybe 15x20" and although I enjoyed the McTavishing in the border, I'm not totally thrilled with the entire finished effect -it's too puffy in the middle where there's no quilting. I wish I'd pre-quilted the central panel before adding the strips, but it's too late for that now.

Saturday, June 27, 2009


I spent a lot of time today working on a project which can't be shown at this point (I seem to have a lot of those at the moment!) but before I did that, I turned two of my birthday block swap blocks into cushions. We got new sofas recently and got rid of some of the old, battered cushions when the old sofa went. I thought these two pieces would make great cushions... The cream coloured one is not from the swap, it's just a cushion.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Cathedral Windows

No time to get into the sewing room today, but I still have something to blog - this fabulous birthday swap block from Margaret, which came in the post. As usual, Margaret's work is fabulous, and I love the colours she has chosen for this block. As it's a highly textured cathedral windows block, it really doesn't need anything further doing to it, so I have simply hung it on a wall as is - it makes a superb mini quilt that way.

Thought you might like to see the back as well, as it's also quite funky. I particularly like the b/w fabric which echoes the shape of the cathedral windows on the front. And Wil, if you are reading this, no, you can't have it - I am quite happy to share bits of my black and white stash, but this would be going way too far!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Spring Fling Round Robin

Although I did quite a bit of work today, I can't really show what I did, as the Spring Fling Round Robin is a secret this time around. However, I can show a sneak peek of some of the quilting - this is a very small segment of the whole - and I think it's safe to show the back, which shows the quilting, but not the pieced top, so it would be very difficult to form an idea of what the top looks like, with the possible exception of the person who finished off the top and sent it to me! I had fun with this - I started from the middle with the flowers, as in the sneak peek, and worked out. What you can't see from these photos is the piecing, which is really interesting and quite varied, so the quilting was fun to try to plan. I promise to come back and show more photos after it's bound, labelled, and the final recipient has it in her possession...

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Block lotto blocks...

Some blocks for the block lotto - this month's theme is Quilter's Choice, using 30s reproductions and WOW - not a big 30s repro fan, so I didn't have any on hand, but I bought a few at Sandown so I could play along. Today I had a chance to make the blocks - yes, June is nearly over! But at least it's done... Another sewing day tomorrow, I hope, though my builder is starting work on the bathroom, so who knows what chaos my house will be in...

Monday, June 22, 2009

Drunkard's Path

Today I had a small window of time between dropping the kids at school and going back to collect Sarah to go to an interview at her new school (just to hand in admissions forms and ask any questions) - I was originally going to use the time to go look at flooring for the bathroom, but I just couldn't face it. So I dug my way into the sewing room (it's encumbered at the moment by a radiator and mirrored bathroom cabinet, both in large boxes, as well as other odds and ends for the bathroom (which we are having redone, starting this week, in case you missed that part!) - I guess I should be glad the tiles are downstairs rather than in there...) and did a block for the next block set of the Around the World Quilt Bee. These are Aimee's blocks - she started with a circle made of 6" DP blocks; I have decided to make mine smaller and set them more traditionally - this is solely because I had a pack of 5" charm squares, so my pieces weren't big enough for the 6" block! The colours aren't quite the same, but the fabrics are similarly retro, so I hope they will work.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Been to Sandown

Spent a few hours today at Sandown - didn't take any photos of quilts - every year I take loads of photos and then never look at them again, so this year I didn't bother but I did look at them - some very nice ones, though in total, not very many. Still, it's my local show, so I do like to go. I bought a few bits and pieces - some fabric for specific projects and a load of thread. Also bought a bag of batting, but I didn't take a photo of that!

Next week things are looking a lot calmer, vis a vis my schedule, so I may actually have some work to show...

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Loveliness in the post

Here's another block for me from the birthday block swap - this one is from Anne and is just gorgeous - I've included the funky side photo to show some of the texture - the lower parts of the flowers are only attached at the spine, so there's a lot of scope for making them really pop when it's quilted.

I'm not at all sure what I will do with these blocks - something different with each one, I should think, as they really aren't the type of things which go together - but it will be great fun working out how I want to treat each one...

Finished in time!

Well, this baby quilt is now bound, and my friend has still not had her baby. I thought she might have done so a few days ago when her DH showed up on the school run instead of her, but apparently that was just a coincidence. I hope the baby will come soon, though, as it's certainly more than time!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Bird update

What I worked on today - only briefly - was attaching binding to yesterday's baby quilt, so while looking for something to show I realised it had been ages since I did a cross-stitch update. This is largely because I haven't been doing much cross-stitch, hence nothing to update! But it's been so long since I last showed it that actually, there are 3 more birds complete and I am down to the final four blocks. Yes, the end is in sight, at long last. I shall have to find another long, drawn-out piece to work on once this is finished...

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Batik baby quilt

After the better part of a week of nothing happening, it's nice to finally have something to show. It would be nicer to get some of my free time back, but I don't suppose that will happen any time real soon. Anyway, this morning I did finally get a chance to quilt this baby quilt for a friend who is having a baby in about 2 weeks' time. It's a small quilt so didn't take long to do. I just used a hedgehog spiral with some wavy echoes around it - very simple and quick. Tomorrow I have a lot to get done, but hope to at least get some binding attached to work on during the week. I miss having time to sew. I miss blogging about the stuff I make! In a few weeks' time perhaps things will settle a bit and there will be more sewing!

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Things received...

So, here's what I have to show today - nothing I can take any credit for, but lovely things, nonetheless. On the left is the latest house to arrive for the Textile Challenges house swap - this one is from Betty - thanks, Betty!

On the right, another birthday block, this one from Terri, who has sent the block (the Cathedral Windows in the centre), some spare 3D bowties, coordinating batik strips, plus a book about making folded flower blocks. I felt quite guilty about the book, until I saw she got a real bargain on it... Anyway, can't be sure what I will do with the blocks yet - I want to see what all I get for the swap before deciding which blocks might be used together, if any - but the windows block would certainly be a lovely little mini quilt. Thanks, Terri!

Sunday, June 07, 2009

I won't force you to look at the mending!

Did a load of stuff today - most of it either secret (Exquisite Corpse) or boring (mending - yes, mending!). But there are a few things I can show - the first is this block, which is for the Around the World Quilting Bee - it actually doesn't look nearly as dark as in the photo.

The other thing I can mention is the UFO challenge - I decided that it was done after the beading, and put some binding on it tonight. I still can't work out which way is up, so I put tabs on all four corners and will let Deborah worry about it.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Corn & beans redux

Ta da! I have finished quilting the corn and beans quilt - and I did need the second spool of thread, though only a little. Probably if I'd started with one brand new one (I think I've used it on a few postcards, etc) it would have made it through - but that's ok, I love the colour and will gladly use it again. Tomorrow I will try to get the binding on.

I also made a couple of postcards for a batik background swap - I chose a colourful batik and threadpainted over the flowers, then added some couched fibre and sequins. Simple, but effective. On the right, a selection of neutral fabrics I got from my fabric club this month - which is nice as this area of my stash always needs boosting.

Thursday, June 04, 2009


...or, Finally Finished Object. This is the quiltie I got in the post today from Deborah (for whom I am finishing this piece) as part of the UFO Challenge swap. This top was made a long time ago as a start for a challenge piece with the theme of summer. I got as far as the beach huts and then lost steam. Deborah has kindly sorted it out for me and it looks great. There is detail that doesn't show in the photo, such as some fringe at the top of the sand and the bubbles quilted at the top of the waves. The piece really works now, and I'm delighted with it. Thank you so much, Deborah!

Monday, June 01, 2009

Happy birthday to me...

OK, strictly speaking, it's not my birthday, but it IS my birthday block swap month, so I will get some lovely goodies in the post over the next few weeks - of which this is the first. I asked for people to make blocks any size, shape or colour they liked, but with a strong 3D element in them. How they acheived this was up to them. This block is from Joy, and although there are 4 folded flowers on the block, she has only folded one out and tacked it to show what I can do with them after quilting. Clever of her, as I will certainly want to quilt around them first. The block is about 16 inches square - I haven't measured it, just guessed. And it's done in the same colour scheme as the blocks from my last year's birthday swap, so I might very well combine it with a few of those blocks to make a nice little wallhanging. It's really great and I can't wait to see the rest of the blocks!

It was nice to get this in the post because although I did do some work today, it was just the quilting on the corn and beans quilt, which, while nice to work on and to look at hasn't really changed that much since the last photo I showed of it... I will spare you that, and show it to you again when it's done. I did make good progress on it - there's about 12 inches or so left to do - all down one side, that is. Perhaps later this week, though of course, tomorrow is back to school & work...