A quilt finish and a bonus cushion cover

An odd mixture of emotions today as we emptied the loft of stored Christmas decorations and absorbed the latest guidelines and rules issued by the UK’s Prime Minister. Very strange to think that maybe no one outside of our little ‘household bubble’ will step into the house to see the tree and decorations. But how fortunate we are to be a three, knowing that other members of our family are not alone in their homes either and hopeful that all can remain safe and well until the virus is finally brought under control.

Trying to take a positive slant: the social restrictions already in place have led to much more time being spent at home in the run up to Christmas than in previous years. No end of year lunches or get-togethers getting me out of the house has meant more time to sew in December than I can ever remember! I have two finishes to share. Firstly, the cushion cover I made to test a pattern.

Made from stash fabrics chosen to coordinate with our living room sofas. The cushion cover is 18″ square and has a simple envelope opening.

The second finish is my fifth version of the Beginners Course pattern, Dashing Stars. I used the background fabric to create a narrow 2″ border to give (I hope) the effect of the blocks floating across the quilt top.

I enjoyed hand stitching the binding – it’s just the right time of year to have a cosy quilt draped across my lap. I am very fond of Dashing Stars (5). It combines my go-to saturated Autumn colours with my growing partiality for text print fabrics. All the fabrics were purchased at Purple Stitches. The text fabric is an extra wide background cotton. I used the remainder for the pieced backing.

I used Hobbs Heirloom 80/20 wadding and stitched a 2½” wide diamond grid across the quilt. I’m very happy with how it looks and feels – super soft and cuddly 🙂

No quilt is complete without a label! This label is part of the pieced backing.

Linking these finishes with Wendy for the Peacock Party and Michelle for the Beauties Pageant. Wendy is sharing photos of three of her Christmas quilts – the close ups of the felt applique are worth a peak 😉 – and Michelle has used an old pattern with fabric from her stash to make a quick quilt and gain a sense of achievement 🙂

I do hope you are able overcome any disappointments the Covid restrictions may have brought your way. Our public health officials are hopeful the measures taken now and the vaccination programme being rolled out will give us the opportunity to enjoy social contact with family and friends by the end of Spring. ‘Waiting’ and ‘looking forward’ are certainly themes that resonate powerfully in Advent 2020.

Allison

Quilter’s Color Quest Quilt Completed

My Word for 2020 icon by Allison ReidMy Quilter’s Color Quest quilt is finished! I have so enjoyed learning about colour by reading Rachel Hauser’s book, ‘A Quilter’s Field Guide to Color’. Working through the challenges presented in the book and via the Quilter’s Color Quest has helped me gain a better understanding of my own colour and fabric preferences. I feel much more confident about choosing fabrics, understanding much better why I’m drawn to some rather than others but also how to incorporate fabrics I might have rejected in the past into my future projects.

The Bear Paw blocks were such a pleasure to make. I decided to piece my 59 blocks into an on-point layout with narrow sashing to separate the blocks. I used unbleached calico for the background, all the Bear Paw fabrics were lurking in my stash or scrap bins.

The backing fabric was a gift brought back from a trip to SE Asia. I had to cut the length in half and join selvage edges together to make a piece the right width for the backing. I still can’t quite believe I managed to match up the two pieces of fabric so well – the seam is hardly visible, even if I do say so myself 😀

At 51″ by 71″ the quilt was a comfortable size to fit through Julie the Juki. I used a Hera Marker to establish the initial quilting lines across the pin basted quilt sandwich. One gently wavy line across the centre and another intersecting it were enough to begin the process of stitching out the wavy grid design. I used a walking foot with the line guide set to 2″ to make sure the echoed stitching lines were evenly spaced.

In the bobbin I used a light brown Aurifil 40wt thread, 2314, which blended well with the backing fabric. I chose a varigated Aurifil 40wt thread, 3817, for the top to give some colour to the plain calico setting triangles at the end of each row of blocks.

To finish the quilt I made a scrappy binding, machine stitching it to the back before folding it to the front and machine stitching it down.  I also made a label, this time stitching it into the binding before hand stitching the other two edges in place. (Here’s the link to a label making tutorial I shared earlier this year).

Last night a storm blew up, I crept downstairs, lifted the Bear Tracks and Big Dottie quilts from the sofas and laid them on top of our inadequate summer duvets. Perfect! We were quickly warm enough to go back to sleep! Makes me think I need to make a full size quilt for our bedroom… 😀

Linking this rare finish of mine with Michelle for the Beauties Pageant, Wendy for the Peacock Party and Alycia for Finished or Not Friday. As an introduction to Down Syndrome Awareness Month Michelle gives a beautiful account of being the parent of a child with the condition.

Allison

 

Scrap Vortex Quilt Finished

I have a finished quilt to share after a deal of concentrated effort and a lot of fun in my sewing room over the past five days.

I’ve called this quilt ‘All The Pieces’. (If you’d like to know how I make and attach quilt labels then do take a look at my blog post ‘Homemade Quilt Labels – A Tutorial‘).

It’s been great to use up some scraps a la the Scrap Vortex tutorials by Amanda Jean Nyberg. It’s not just the quilt top that’s made from left-over fabrics. The pieced backing is all from my stash and the super scrappy binding is made from short lengths of binding saved from previous projects.

Even the wadding is part of the use it up/recycle vibe, as I made use of a pack of Quilters Dream Green batting I’d opened for another project. Did you know Dream Green is made from recycled plastic bottles? I really do enjoy using this particular poly batting: It feels soft and smooth (not rough and prickly like other poly battings), is easy to to stitch through and produces light-weight, cuddly quilts.

I quilted a spiral from the centre of the quilt using my walking foot and some handy tips from Yvonne Fuchs, Quilting Jetgirl.

 

Adding the text print borders (all strips left over from extra wide backing fabrics bought at Purple Stitches) helped to stabilize all those scraps and their short seams. The quilt finished at 45½” x 49½”.

Linking with Wendy for the Peacock Party and Michelle for the Beauties Pageant. Wendy shares the progress she is making with the Pandemic Sampler while Michelle been ‘diamond-painting’ a Van Gogh masterpiece!

Allison

Saturday Quilting Bring and Share (119)

Welcome to Saturday Quilting Bring & Share. Bring along a project (or two!) and be inspired by some of the topics and designs being shared by our Worldwide Quilting Community. If you’d like to add to the conversations and introduce your own links please do make use of the comments box at the end of the page. Thank you!

I don’t quite know what’s come over me but I cracked on with the Bargello quilt and can announce a finish! Get me!

The quilt began as an experiment to see if I could design and make Bargello blocks using an entire Jelly Roll. A bit of

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