Saturday Quilting Bring and Share (287)

Welcome to Saturday Quilting Bring & Share. It’s lovely to back πŸ™‚ Hope you have enjoyed a peaceful Easter break. Bring along your projects and share in the tips, tutorials and news to be found via our Worldwide Quilting Community. If you click on any of the links below do leave an encouraging comment wherever you visit to help grow the Community good-vibes πŸ™‚

As usual I’ve been working on more than one project at a time 😌 But there is progress to share. I finished quilting another Trip Around the Stars quilt as part of my investigation into the spray baste vs pin baste debate – read more about that here. Yesterday I made the binding and hope to finish the quilt in the next few days.

I also made progress on the Rainbow Scrap Challenge blocks. Feeling a bit tired and in need of a session of ‘no-brainer’ stitching I remembered the RSC and then 😳 realised I hadn’t made the yellow-gold blocks for March and didn’t even know the colour for April! So that was a good bit of motivation.

The blocks came together quickly and I even found time to delve into my pink scraps (for pink, so it transpires, is the colour for April), cutting 1Β½” strips ready for another peddle-to-the-metal sewing session.

Here are the links into our Worldwide Quilting Community. I hope you find plenty of interest:

The Rainbow Scrap Challenge is the inspiration behind one of Cynthia’s scrap projects. Every month she makes placemats from fabric scraps. Later in the year she will donate them to a local meals on wheels charity who will gift a placemat to recipients of one of their holiday meals.

Christa Watson’s series of YouTube videos are great if you are fairly new to patchwork quilting or want to try a different technique (she shares plenty of tips for more experienced patchwork quilters too). In the latest video she takes us through the method of making a quilt, start to finish using one of the free patterns, Puzzle Box, available from her website.

Sometimes scrolling through Instagram does bear fruit…. My scrolling stopped when I saw a wonderful version of the Modern Squares quilt being show cased by Judy Gula. I found her website and enjoyed reading the guest post by the quilt designer/maker Christine Vinh. She used a selection of very colourful fabrics called ‘Earth Made Paradise’ by Kathy Doughty. The pattern is ideal if you are puzzling over how to use a collection of busy, large scale prints to best effect in a quilt. Needless to say I have the pattern download and have added it to my ‘must make’ list!

Patty has created the illusion of curves in the careful placing of her Half Rectangle blocks. It is a very striking design in her colour choices of black and wasabi.

Linda’s Seaglass modern applique quilt displays her usual great colour choice and placement of fabrics with really effective free motion quilting designs. I’m so glad there is such a wealth of inspiration and knowledge made readily available by talented textile artists who are generous enough to blog about the processes they employ.

Leader-Ender projects quietly grow in the background while other projects are being worked on. Katy’s leader-ender quilt has 1,368 squares lovingly stitched together. I don’t need to tell you that Katy is a prolific quilt maker!

Forget Me Not is a new fabric line by Allison of Cluck Cluck Sew. Go to her blog post to see the new fabrics and catch a glimpse of the new patterns she’s designed to showcase the collection.

Allison

 

A catch up, with finishes and new ventures!

After an unscheduled break from writing blog posts I have a bit of catching up to do! So, without further ado, here we go:

The Beginners course ended successfully with my student finishing her lovely quilt. She’s looking suitably proud of her achievement in this photo!

I can share a finish too – the pretty, pretty version of my Trip Around the Stars quilt I made as the demo for the class is complete.

I added binding in the bright pink I’d used for the star points. I stitched the binding down by hand – not such a chore on a quilt that measures 38″ x 46″.

The lovely decoupage print extra wide backing is from Purple Stitches.

For the quilting I stitched one of my go-to favourites: a wavy line grid. I used a walking foot with a guide set at 1Β½ inches.

Thinking about what it’s like for absolute beginners trying to get their heads around patchwork quilting prompted me to rise to an online product challenge. I’ve produced the ‘Patchwork Quilting Equipment Guide: Best Buys for Beginners‘. My aim was to provide the information needed to make purchases that are fit for the job and will provide value, project by project, over many years. I’ve included sections on rotary cutting equipment, threads, needles, pins & scissors, fabric, wadding and sewing machines. Of course I got a bit carried away and added lots of extra information including how to care for the tools and even an explanation of all the weird cuts of fabrics us patchwork quilters talk about so blithely! The Guide is now ready to purchase as a pdf download.

My most recent project has been a ‘learn something new’ endeavour: the making of a little coin purse using a decorative purse frame. I have to say it was a bit fiddly and I’m not convinced about the practicality of this particular design. I find the opening of the 8.5cm/3ΒΌ” frame is a bit tight even for my small-medium sized hands. That, combined with the broad base style of the purse, makes it difficult to reach into the bottom corners.

As I’ve already prepared fabric with interfacing to make another nine purses I’m going to experiment with other pattern templates that have a smaller, more rounded shape. I only bought two of the small metal frames so I’ll move onto 10.5cm/4″ frames to find out if they are more practicable (hopefully the pieces of fabric I’ve prepared will be large enough!). The first pattern template I used was one that came free with a tutorial.Β  Next up, I’m going to try creating my own pattern template following the directions in this tutorial.

Linking with Wendy for the Peacock Party and Michelle for the Beauties Pageant. Wendy is making preparations as she is the guest exhibitor at the Taupo Quiltmakers show in June while Michelle is enjoying over-thinking a fabric pull for her next Plaid-ish quilt.

Happy Stitching! And, most importantly, Happy Easter!

Allison

 

Saturday Quilting Bring and Share (284)

Welcome to Saturday Quilting Bring & Share. Bring along your project(s) and share in some of the inspiration circulating through our Worldwide Quilting Community. It’s easy to be part of the sharing: click on one or more of the links below; get inspired; click on more links; get lost in a wonderful quilt lined warren (who knows where in the World you might pop up?); and leave encouraging thoughts in the comments boxes of the sites you visit πŸ™‚

I’ve spent the week tweaking my Trip Around the Stars Pattern ready for the Beginners Course that begins next Saturday, 5th March, at Purple Stitches. To test the pattern I’ve been making a second sample quilt. All the while I’ve been making the quilt top and adjusting the pattern I’ve been aware of a teaching dialogue running through my head πŸ˜€ I don’t think I’ve been speaking out loud but I may have been! I guess most tutors preparing to teach a class have a bit of a run through in their minds to discover the best way to demonstrate and describe the techniques being taught?

On Thursday I enjoyed a sewing day with friends. The hall we used was a bit chilly and I forgot to take a cushion to soften the folding wooden chair but none-the-less it was a lovely day. After all the lockdown restrictions of the past two years time spent gathered together with a group of sew-ists is precious and not to be missed. I made the aqua & teal blocks for my RSC 2022 quilt.

It’s good to be up-to-date with the challenge after playing catch-up with the January blocks. I guess the colour for March will be revealed this weekend.

This coming week, I hope to finish the Trip Around the Stars sample quilt but it’s obviously more important to prepare for the Course than to complete a second sample quilt.

Here are some links to get you started on a search through the tips and inspiration patchwork quilters have been sharing:

I was really pleased to find this blog post by Brittany of Lo & Behold Stitchery. It’s the perfect follow-on to my quest for piecing accuracy. Brittany has shared ‘6 Tips for Flat Seams‘. Her tips include finger pressing seams and using a tailor’s clapper.

Maintaining equipment is another important way to improve patchwork accuracy. Melva of Melva Loves Scraps shared this link to a post all about caring for self-healing cutting mats.

Well! This is something different! A table runner made from circles of cotton washing line! Katy explains her method here.

Rachel’s Expat Chronicles series continues with a comparison of staple eating habits and foods in Holland and the USA. Interesting! Lots of bread in Holland but far less sugar than in the US. Rachel didn’t mention pancakes but I can remember a 1980s food franchise in London called ‘The Dutch Pancake House’.

Cynthia has made an eye-catching quilt using the triangles left after cutting up brightly coloured strip sets. Her choice of a dark blue background sets off the bright solids perfectly.

Sometimes its best to just do something rather than try to come up with a plan. Patty has created a stunning little quilt after making a ‘bunch of’ blue Drunkards Path blocks. Those blocks got her started sewing again, before long she was adding another colour and playing with quilt top layouts. Her unplanned quilt definitely gave her creativity a chance to get back into gear.

If you use a die-cutter in your quilt making process then be sure to check out Katy’s tutorial for her Heavenly Stars Quilt over on the Accuquilt website. Katy’s design makes clever use of two sizes of the Sawtooth Star block.

Linking with Alycia for Finished or Not Friday.

Happy Stitching!

Allison

 

Meet the Patchwork Juggler!

‘Patchwork Juggler’! Ha! Ha! That’s what I feel like at the moment! Throwing patchwork projects in the air and catching about two out of five as gravity does it’s thing. (For ‘gravity’ read ‘time’ and ‘inclination’!)

Let’s start with the projects I have managed to keep juggling rather than the one’s I’ve dropped…

Plaid-ish was completed in time to be gifted πŸŽ‰

On social media I’ve seen many quilts made to this pattern by Erica of Kitchen Table Quilting. A current Plaid-ish QAL hosted by @jessicaquilter over on Instagram finally shifted my thinking from ‘one day I’ll make a Plaid-ish quilt…’ to ‘I’m going to make a Plaid-ish quilt NOW!’

Most of the fabrics are from my stash. I did have to purchase some fabrics for the dark blocks and, to fit in with the limited time available,Β  I chose to buy an extra wide backing rather than piece a backing. I made all the Blocks required by the pattern but decided not to use the bottom two rows as I was worried the 64″ x 82″ quilt would be difficult/impossible to squish into a standard front-loading washing machine. I’m hoping this quilt will be used a lot and therefore require regular washing πŸ™‚ So this Plaid-ish quilt measures 64″ square and does fit into a standard washing machine.

I used Bosal 80/20 wadding and 50wt Aurifil 5005 turquoise blue thread for the quilting.

The corner label was stitched into the binding.

The binding fabric, from my stash, proved to be a great colour match for the patchwork of fabrics on the front and the muted backing fabric.

The Plaid-ish quilt definitely counts as a squirrel project – it certainly wasn’t in my plans for the first quarter of 2022 – and deciding to gift it was the best incentive to keep it moving forwards, not stopping until it was well and truly finished πŸ™‚

Other projects that have been thrown in the air and continue to be juggled are the baby quilt design that I’m going to be using as the pattern for the up-coming Beginners Course at Purple Stitches. It’s all been a bit of a rush but I’m discovering that sometimes deadlines can be my friend rather than the source of my project downfall. I finished the shop sample of the quilt last week and I’ve been pounding my laptop keyboard, writing and revising the class tutorial version of the pattern.

I’m also writing the ‘Trip Around the Stars’ pattern for ‘general release’ – the design is slightly larger than the class quilt and includes instructions for strip piecing Four Patch Blocks as well as the Snowball, Star Point Blocks.

Of course revising the design and writing two patterns means I need to make another sample quilt! I must confess to having got into a bit of a muddle at this point… Thinking it would be OK for me to get ahead of myself by cutting out the fabrics for the planned ‘general release’ pattern whilst continuing to write and revise the Beginners version of the pattern. Hmm! I should know the limits of my brain power by now! 🀯 Let’s just say I will be shopping for some extra yardage…. 😏

Somehow in the background I’ve managed to sort and cut fabrics for my Rainbow Scrap Challenge Bullseye Courthouse Steps blocks. Here are the completed January blocks. The February RSC colour is aqua/teal.

So that’s the projects that have been/are being successfully juggled.

The projects that have been dropped include the original Trip Around the Stars quilt and the Modern Fans quilt, both of which are partially quilted. I did manage to publish the first in my mini-series about accurate piecing but have yet to complete the second blog post. Regular readers will know the weekly Saturday Quilting Bring & Share posts have been dropped too *sigh* and there’s not been many other social media updates either. Once I have the Beginners Class pattern finalised and the larger Trip Around the Stars pattern ready to be tech-edited I will be scurrying around picking up the dropped projects, ready to share and nurture (my word for 2022) once more.

Linking this post to Wendy’s Quilts & More for the Peacock Party, Alycia Quilts Finished or Not Friday and Michelle’s From Bolt to Beauty Beauties Pageant.

Happy Stitching!

Allison