Friday, 27 February 2015

Quick Quilted Heart Pillow

Sometimes there just isn't the time to do as much sewing and quilting as you would like.  The past couple of weeks have been like that, but I'm pleased to show off my quick quilted heart pillow.  All the fabrics here are from stash, and most of them have been used in previous projects, so I'm still persevering with my attempt to Sew My Stash 2015.

The heart has one of my all time favourite fabrics - the Liberty lamps.  I bought this fabric on eBay a couple of years ago.  It was not even a fat eighth, so I have had to use it sparingly.  I've never seen it again; I think it was a limited edition and from a few years ago.  I'm pleased I've used a small square of it here in a place I get to see it, even though it is minute.

Look carefully and you will see that the threads need sewing in - that's the story of this blog these days.  There are so many threads because I did so much quilting.  I quilted the hell out of it, but I just could not resist.  I love the texture the quilting provides and once that walking foot is on, I want to get my work out of it before I change it to its ordinary foot.  I decided to put a pink zip in the side, which I think looks rather cute.

I've taken the photos with my other recent quilted pillows.  I think they look nice together.

Thanks for visiting.  Have a nice weekend!

Friday, 20 February 2015

Coming to the Party late

We may be heading towards the end of the month, but I have finally managed to work on something for Project Leasa's Precuts Party, where you sew precut bundles of fabric from stash.  So much effort went into my large Scrappy Squares Quilt (confession - I am still sewing in the threads) that I needed a quick project and decided to make some lovely Liberty pillowcases for our bedroom.

I don't own many precut bundles, in fact I owned just one; my friend bought me some 5" Liberty squares for Christmas so it had to be them that I worked with, though working with Liberty is never a hardship!  

For the pillowcases I wanted to stick to three main colours (pink, blue and purple) to match the bedroom.  That meant I had to reject some of the lovely 5" squares and supplement fabric from my stash.  I have been left with some lovely reds, greens, yellows and oranges, which I am going to work with next week.

I love how these have turned out.  I quilted squares using my walking foot and coordinating Aurifil threads.  The feel is just wonderful.

To make them even more luxurious I used Liberty fabric 'Nancy' on the back and quilted lines down the back at 3" intervals.  I finally got around to using my Clover Hera Marker to get lovely straight lines, and it worked a treat!

The only downside to these pillowcases is that they are almost too nice to use.  I think they will be ornamental.  My husband likes gardening and running and I'm not sure I want him to lay his head on them after he's been at the allotment or on a run.  But at least they look nice!


Monday, 16 February 2015

Scrappy Quilt finished...almost

Do you remember that commitment that I would have my scrappy quilt finished by today and also blogged about?  I've got very close to completing it, but I have fallen at the final hurdle.  The quilting is done and the binding is on and I've even taken a couple of photos, but there are just so many threads that need sorting by hand that I cannot possibly finish this quilt by the end of today.  I've decided to give myself a little leeway for that final task.

My husband picked the colours for this quilt because he likes "earthy" colours and I am thrilled with his specification.  I quilted squares in matching threads for each of the 25 mini square blocks.  It seemed to take forever to do that but I like this kind of quilting - its repetition is meditative and I like to tally in my mind where I am up to after each square has been quilted.

I mentioned in a previous posts how I had used scraps to get the backing to the right size.  I was very "freestyle" in my piecing, which explains that funny angles and not straight stitches, but I am pleased with how it has turned out.  I have used up lots of fabrics and scraps in the process, which is what this quilt is all about.

You can't see it so well in the photos today (but I will show it in the final post about this quilt) but the binding has curly hearts on it and I love that touch as this is for my hubby.  (Fear not, the soppiness is over, that's as slushy as I get!)

Friday, definitely Friday, it will be finished.

Friday, 13 February 2015

Scrappy Squares Quilt WIP

I really shouldn't be surprised that my scrappy squares quilt is taking a while to finish, but each day I think I'll make more progress than I actually do and then my anticipated completion date gets put further back.  I need to have some patience, but it feels I have spent a lot of time with these fabrics and this quilt and I want to make some new fabric friendships.

This quilt is about 62" square so my backing fabric was never going to be enough.  I wondered about putting two large strips down the sides but then I thought that I was missing a trick to get down more of my stash and scraps so I opted to piece together random fabrics of random quantities and I think it adds to the overall scrappy feel.

I haven't worked out the total amount of fabric I've used in this project, but both the front and back felt heavy when I was getting them ironed and basted, and this was very satisfying.  

There are 49 blocks in total and I have decided to quilt each block with a square with a coordinating thread.  At one point I had creative ideas of quilting different shapes (cats, carrots, a house) but then I reverted to my dependable quilting style.  I have now quilted 33 of the total number of blocks, so I am two thirds of the way through.

Tomorrow and Sunday I don't have much planned, so I am hoping that this will be finished then.  There is another Sew my Stash challenge over on Project Leasa taking place this month and it's a "Precuts Party".  At Christmas a friend gave me some 5" Liberty squares and I really want to get them sewn together now.  I feel I have not even got my glad rags on and yet everyone else is already sipping the champagne.    When this is completed I will be hitting that Tana Lawn and joining in the fun straight away.

How true to my word am I?  Here's my commitment - this will be finished and blogged about on Monday,  Ooh er - I've got to finish it now!

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Locally grown finally finished

Today I am showing off a quilt which has taken me far too long to finish.  I started it in August 2013,  I pieced it but then was unsure what fabric to back it with so it was stuffed into a box and forgotten about.  It only saw the light of day when I was sorting out some stuff in my craft room and I realised that it was close to being finished and that it really needed to have its day in the sun.

The quilt has many imperfections and I think my piecing has improved considerably since I first worked on it, but it is quite nice to recognise my own progress in sewing and quilting.  The fabrics come from Locally Grown by Creative Thursday.  I love the patterns and colours.

I was particular about the squares being the right way up, but not with the "framing" fabrics.  I remember that my brain couldn't take the calculating to get everything the right way up.

The backing was made from left over fabric and I think it works well.  These were fabrics I would otherwise have been holding on to without a project in mind.  I think it was a good idea to get them used and out of my stash.

The binding was some plain fabric I found in stash which I think brings both the back and front together.  There are a lot of busy fabrics in this quilt so a simple red makes them stand out and does not compete with them.

This quilt will be given to my niece, Ava, who got a knitted blanket when she was born, a quilt when she was one and who is due a bigger quilt now she is three.  She's quite a character with a big and busy personality - this quilt should suit her perfectly.

Thank you for visiting.

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Small blog with a big project

I'm linking today to Lily's Quilts' Small Blog Meet.  It's a chance for me to visit other blogs and hopefully some other bloggers will come over here and meet me.

Small Blog Meet

It's funny that I am linking to the small blog meet when today I am showing off a big project.  I have finally pieced my scrappy squares and it feels like such a relief!  This quilt was conceived to sew up some stash and scraps.  Initially I was going to make 16 scrappy squares and add sashing, but then I realised I would have to buy the sashing and that would not make a dent in my stash and that felt counter-productive.  In the end I decided to make 49 scrappy squares and pieced them together to make a large quilt and to use up plenty of fabric.

The quilt top is big and will eventually be in our front room to snuggle up under.  The piecing is not perfect but it's perfect enough for our house.  I love the colours and I am so pleased to have used some old scraps along with favourite fabrics.  There are so many novelty fabrics included, because they make up a lot of my stash, but many of them have direct links to the favourite things of myself and my husband (elephants, cats, gardening, chickens, citrus).  There are 1225 squares in total and I think I have used in excess of 70 different fabrics.

I now have to quilt it.  I'm not sure what I'll end up doing for that.  I have the backing fabric ready; it's been in stash for some time but I think I am going to have a week off from this quilt.  I have some other projects I want to work on first, and they will help me to come back to this one with renewed energy.  All those small squares have fatigued me!

Hopefully any new visitors will see pop back and see the finished quilt.