Saturday Quilting Bring and Share (240)

Welcome to Saturday Quilting Bring & Share πŸ™‚ Bring along your project(s) and enjoy sharing in the conversations and inspiration being circulated via our Worldwide Quilting Community. I hope you have time to click on a few of the links below; maybe find a quilty blogger you haven’t met before, learn a new technique or discover a new on-line event to join making new friends along the way. Please do leave a comment or a like on the pages you visit – it is such an encouragement to the writers of the blogs we read.

Thank you for all the encouraging comments left me last week after I admitted to having lost my sew-jo. They were just what I needed to get the cover off my sewing machine and get stitching. On Monday I wrote about the string blocks that got me back into sewing mode alongside my plan to make a string block quilt for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge 2021. I received two messages from readers very politely asking if they might use the design for their RSC quilts? That gave me a real boost – so good to know my idea had given them the inspiration they needed for the Challenge. I think that definitely counts as a tick for my word of the year, SHARE πŸ™‚

Having found my sew-jo I now need to work on my ‘pattern-jo’. Boy! Have I been making heavy weather of writing a pattern for a table runner/wall-hanging project! πŸ˜€ This week I’ve managed to write enough to be able to test the cutting instructions for two of the blocks. Thankfully they came together as planned. Now to write the instructions for and make the third and final block…

Of course a revitalised sew-jo lead to a Dreami (drop everything and make it) project has sprung onto my design wall! This began as a solution to the problem of what to do with pre-cut fabric packs? I find it difficult to resist buying packs of coordinating fabrics, they look so lovely on the shelves in my sewing room but what to do with them? I came up with an idea for this pack of eight fat quarters (an on-line, lockdown purchase made last year).

Melange by Stof ‘Misty Morning’ fat quarter pack and yardage.

I wanted to use as much of the fabric as possible to make a good size lap quilt. The quilt plan grew in the back of my mind, some of the maths became my ‘go back to sleep’ thoughts in the middle of the night. This week suddenly felt like the right time to break into the fat quarter stack. After machine washing the fabrics I was pleased all measured just over 18″ x 20″ except for one fat quarter which wasn’t cut straight:

Never mind, with a bit of fiddling I just managed to get the necessary cuts from this wonky fat quarter.

The little basket in the photo contains all of the left-over fabric from eight fat quarters – I’m pleased so little fabric has gone to waste or been added to my scrap bins. The partially completed nine-patch block is the only glimpse I can give of the quilt just now but I hope it will come together very quickly and soon be ready for the big reveal.

Here are this weeks links into our Worldwide Quilting Community:

Cherry’s latest pattern, Oh! Sew Happy, is a cheerful row-by-row sewing themed quilt. There are spools, buttons, a sewing machine as well as a row of houses and the word ‘sew’. Lots of elements of the pattern could be used or adapted to make wall hangings for a sewing room or gifts for stitching friends.

Angela Walters has scheduled a series of live chats over on her You Tube channel (recordings will be available if the live times are not convenient for you). Here is the schedule: 21st Jan, Tips for Machine Quilting Feathers; 28th Jan, Help! How do I Quilt it?; and 4th Feb, The Business of Machine Quilting.

A post by Yvonne Fuchs aka Quilting Jet Girl led me to a skill building block of the month that has just got underway. Organised by Kim Lapacek the ‘Old School Block of the Month’ will have blocks contributed by twelve quilt designers through the year. Here are links to the introductory post and the first block post.

Looking for a speedy way to cut fabric? Katy demonstrates How a Die Cutter Works. And in a second post Katy shares information about the various die cutting machines and their accompanying dies manufactured by Accuquilt.

Rachel has made a serious dent in her collection of string scraps and has a finished Log Cabin quilt to enjoy. I especially like the scrappy border she improvised – another way of using up string scraps πŸ™‚

Happy Stitching!

Allison

Saturday Quilting Bring and Share (239)

Welcome to Saturday Quilting Bring & Share. Bring along your project(s) and share in the inspiration and kindness generously provided by members of our Worldwide Quilting Community. There are links to blog posts further down this page. Please do click on the links and leave comments on the pages you visit – those will be such an encouragement to the page owners πŸ™‚

Well! This isn’t a very inspiring photo is it?

Sadly it sums up my sewing activities this past week. I did press all the pink strips I sorted from my string scraps (using a Christmas gift – a wool pressing mat) but I haven’t yet lifted the cover off my sewing machine or done any of the hand applique I’d intended to resume. Instead I have filled the time fiddling around designing a table runner and listing quilts in my Etsy shop. I’ve also been out walking quite a lot despite the grey skies and low temperatures. In truth I think all the depressing news this week has stolen my sew-jo. I know I just need to ‘push through’ and get started. Maybe later today I’ll fire up Julie the Juki and we’ll bash out a few string blocks together πŸ™‚

How’s your sew-jo been this week?

A welcome occupation for me has been catching up on reading blog posts. I hope the links below prove inspiring and a welcome distraction from the relentless nature of this pandemic. Dive in πŸ™‚

Irish Chain patterns are very versatile. Allison Harris has stamped this one with her own style and it made a beautiful finish just in time for Christmas.

Leanne* is running a series of ‘Let’s Get to Know…’ interviews on her blog site. First up is HollyAnne Knight of String & Story. I hadn’t come across Holly-Anne before reading the interview. I’ll definitely be watching out for the monthly ‘Let’s Get to Know’ posts as a great way of well… getting to know more quilters from our Worldwide Community πŸ™‚ And Leanne has asked for suggestions for interviewees so why not put a few names her way?

Amy Friend ran a house block BOM last year. She has now provided the twelve house styles as individual paper pieced blocks in her shop. You may just find the perfect house to use in a quilt to remind you of home or to use in a new home gift quilt.

Christa Watson has just started a nine part series over on her blog. ‘Machine Quilting Tips and Tricks‘ is bound to be a great source of advice and inspiration πŸ™‚

I had to laugh in sympathy with Rebecca as she described the ins and outs of adjusting a quilt pattern and the complications that ensue when the project is put to one side for a while! Trying to remember all the changes and the recalculations re. fabric requirements etc. can be a bit like trying to solve an intricate plot line in a crime novel! But Rebecca’s done it and has her One Monthly Goal project up and running!

Several bloggers I follow make ‘temperature quilts’, recording the high and low temperatures for each day of the year by making simple colour-coded patchwork blocks that grow into a quilt. Patty has her 2020 Temperature quilt top finished and explains how she keeps the fabrics organised through the year.

Back to Leanne* who designs and makes terrific quilts. She’s a child-minder by day and this week she’s used her experiences of teaching little children to dress themselves as an illustration for her regular devotional post. There are no photos but her words have painted clear pictures in my mind πŸ™‚

Whilst playing catch-up with blog reading I found this gem… A blog post from Rachel posted al the way back on 11th December! It’s all about choosing fabrics for English Paper Piecing. Well worth a read especially as there are lots of example photos which really help to show how fussy cutting, colour, contrast and placement can affect the look of a block.

Jayne’s careful use of colour has created a really interesting quilt top from just two block designs – Churn Dash and Half Square Triangles. Definitely one to save to Pinterest!

Reading Bernie’s latest blog post over at Needle & Foot led me to a brand new link up called ‘Stitch Sew & Show 2021‘, hosted by Life in the Scrapatch. The link up runs from Wednesday to Tuesday and is described as follows, ‘This is a very informal party … no stress, no prizes, no finish needed. This is just a place to share what you are working on with others and enjoy their inspiration.Β Think of it as sitting at home while stitching with a group of friends.Β I have always enjoyed sharing with others and have received much kindness in return.Β This is a way for me to say thank you and to encourage others.’

Linking this post with Scrapatch for the first Stitch Sew & Show of 2021 and Alycia for Finished or Not Friday.

Happy Stitching!

Allison

Saturday Quilting Bring and Share (238)

Welcome to the first Saturday Quilting Bring & Share of 2021. As always bring along your project(s) and share in the kindness and inspiration being made available to us by members of our Worldwide Quilting Community. Please do join in by leaving a message in the comments box at the bottom of this page and of any pages you click to visit πŸ™‚

I hope you have found physical rest and peace of mind over the holiday period, ready to start the New Year with reserves of resilience built up for the next few difficult months. January 1st definitely had a ‘Groundhog Day’ feel to it as we woke to the continuation of social distancing restrictions. We put the Christmas tree and decorations away today. I should have kept hold of a couple of strings of fairy lights – they have been very comforting, bringing a sparkle to the long Winter evenings.

Leading up to end of 2020 I had quite a flurry of finishes with three projects completed in less than four weeks! Today I’m deliberately slowing my pace, reuniting myself with the little needle turn applique project I took on our holiday in July. The fabric is a bit crumpled but all the supplies are together and ready to use. The pattern, Basket of Blooms, by Jo Avery is available as a download from The Quilters’ Guild Pattern Box.

Have you been reviewing 2020 or setting goals for 2021? I spent New Years Day working through the opening sections of a Planner and tidying my paperwork. I was given a desk tidy for Christmas. It’s a handy size for picking up and carrying all the essentials with me as I move my desk-work around the house in order to keep in touch with the variable internet signal and my need for space.

I’m afraid I have been very remiss in keeping up with reading blog posts over the past two weeks…. I’m just about to dive into the 198 email notifications residing in my inbox … amongst all the New Year sales alerts I’m sure there are plenty of nuggets of gold well worth a click and a read… πŸ˜€

…. Sometime later… 79 emails remain unopened but as it’s nearly time for bed I will stop reading so I can publish this post on a Saturday (a bench mark moment for 2021!).

Here are the links I’ve selected from the abundance of holiday season posts published by far more diligent bloggers than myself:

A bit late for Christmas (my fault) but Sonia’s reusable gift bag could be made in fabrics to suit any occasion. The tutorial is available on her blog.

Alyce says ‘There’s Only 3 Tools You Need for Free Motion Quilting’. She does add a ‘can do attitude’ to her short list of supplies, I wonder if you would add anything else to the list?

(Don’t forget you can sign up for the Confident & Joyful Free Motion Quilting course at Jo Westfoot’s Online Sewing School – closing date 8th January!).

Having finished my Rainbow Scrap Challenge 2020 quilt BEFORE the end of the year I am minded to join in the 2021 challenge. I mean even after making a quilt that measures 60″ x 72″ I still have a heaps of fabric scraps to use up… Find out more about this years Rainbow Scrap Challenge here. The colour for January is pink and I’m thinking of rummaging through my box of string scraps πŸ™‚

 

 

Is vintage thread a good bet for quilting? Rebecca has gathered interesting information on the shelf-life of threads and how best to store your precious spools.

The Best of 2020 link up hosted by Cheryl of Meadow Mist Designs has produced a wonderful quilt exhibition and treasure trove of tutorials and patterns from all those who have taken part posting their own ‘top five’ of 2020. Well worth a visit. Click through the links and you could imagine yourself walking through a quilt exhibition (remember those?).

Happy Stitching!

Allison

Saturday Quilting Bring and Share (237)

Welcome to Saturday Quilting Bring & Share. Bring along your project(s) and share in the stories, inspiration and generosity of our Worldwide Quilting Community. Click on the links and add your ideas and thoughts in the comments boxes at the end of each blog post. With Christmas fast approaching I’ve decided to make this the last edition of Saturday Quilting Bring & Share for 2020. Although I’m sure I’ll be sharing links in posts I write between now and the New Year πŸ˜‰ Don’t forget by subscribing to my blog an email notification will be sent to your inbox whenever a post is published πŸ™‚

My week has been dominated by deadlines: first and foremost the finishing of the Diamond Anniversary bed runner (see the photos here); then a quilt pattern to finalise before emailing it to a magazine while the sample quilt was collected by a courier (that sounds so cool to me! πŸ˜€ ); finally, finally, a couple of hours re-capping and preparing for an in-person class at Purple Stitches.

To calm myself down after all the deadlines were met I turned my attention to a bit of fabric sorting. My basket(s) of scraps from recent projects were overflowing. It was relaxing to untangle the mess, sorting the scraps by colour into my scrap bins. I even threw away a few! I know!

The Beginners Course at Purple Stitches was suspended during the November lockdown. Today the two participants were able to join me at the shop (perspex screens, masks and hand gel made this possible). It was such a pleasure to be sewing in a group and I had the extra pleasure of seeing student A progress to making and stitching binding to her quilt while student D conquered ΒΌ” seams to make Sawtooth Star blocks. So all in all a very satisfying morning.

During the class I had time to cut binding strips for my fifth version of Dashing Stars, the pattern used for the Beginners Course. I definitely feel like my sewing is winding down for the year.

There are two finishes within sight: I have the binding to machine stitch to the front of the Dashing Stars quilt before stitching it by hand to the back; there’s the sample cushion that also needs binding to be hand stitched; and I may have time to tackle the over large blocks I made for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. If only I’d done some forward planning like Julie whose RSC quilt blocks all fit into a design she had in mind right at the start of the year. My ‘fly by the seat of my pants’ method has resulted in the need to unpick some of the thirty-six patch blocks to make more versatile nine patch blocks…

I hope you will find plenty to interest you in this weeks selection of links into the Worldwide Quilting Community:

Cross stitch Gingerbread Houses! Now we know it’s nearly Christmas! Wendy has been making these 3D houses since 2010 and has quite a collection. They are very appealing. Wendy highly recommends the patterns by ‘The Victorian Sampler’. I especially like all the little extras added to the cross stitch including buttons, beads, piping and ribbons.

Sharon has finished a quilt made of Christmas fabrics with a snugly flannel backing and a baubles quilting pattern. Perfect for this chilly season (in the Northern hemisphere anyway!).

Bobbi has been making zippered book sleeves to protect her books when she takes them out and about. She has provided a tutorial which is particularly helpful if you, like Bobbi herself, have been avoiding projects with zips. In three sizes, these would make an excellent last minute Christmas gift πŸ™‚

I found linking my emotions to fabric quite a test as I followed along Rachel Hauser’s Quilter’s Color Quest earlier this year. Rachel shares very clearly how she uses fabrics and designs to work through and express emotions. She used a design in 2016 to illustrate her feelings around the struggles of her severely disabled baby, Eleni. Since then Rachel has remade the design using fabrics to express a sense of hope. Early next year she will be launching the pattern and hosting a QAL – as Rachel says: ‘If you are a maker, you have a unique opportunity to use art to process big emotions. I know from experience that this can be so healing.’ Read more here.

I’m not that keen on batiks – can I hear gasps of astonishment and horror? – but… Leanne’s use of Island Batik’s ‘Love and Kisses’ range of fabrics has softened my opinion somewhat. Leanne has used the fabrics to make another of herΒ  Bloom blocks. There’s plenty of quilting inspiration in the close up photos shared in her blog post.

Jan’s use of partial Dresden Plate blocks to make a medallion style quilt is well worth a look. It looks like a Drunkards Path pattern but without the curved piecing.

Linking with Alycia for Finished or Not Friday. Alycia shares her latest finish Quilt of Valour and the story of Wade the Steer who makes regular visits to her back yard!

Happy Stitching!

Allison