Wednesday, 28 November 2012

WIP Wednesday - a few Christmas gifts :)

Updating this post today (06/01/2013) to link it up to Fiber of All Sorts 2013 - A 
Lovely Year of Finishes. This month, I am going to finish the twin size quilt I started in November (please see below) which, when finished, I will send to America so that it can be given to a Hurricane Sandy survivor.

Original post:
Brrrrrr ... It's turned cold in London today - definitely time to get the winter woollies out! It's so cold, I didn't even venture ino the loft after work to sew so not much to share tonight.

I am making 7 Pants Bags as Christmas gifts and did all the cutting yesterday in one go. I planned on having a couple of hours in the evenings doing solid chain piecing in one hit:

... but I couldn't help myself and made two first, I just need to tidy the sides and insert the ribbons:


And remember all this lovely fabric I got from the generous Tonya? Well, I'm going to make a quilt for a young person and find a USA link that can donate it for me to a hurricane Sandy survivor. I saw this pattern by Colette Cogley in the Nov/Dec edition of Love of Quilting:

and whilst I'm not doing strip blocks, I liked the simplicity of the pattern. Here's my centre piece - 56 charm squares (from Moda's Cape Ann):

Linking up to Freshly Pieced Quilts WIP Wednesday and definitely recommend having a look around the others - there's some great work out there! Here's a few posts I looked at today on blogs I haven't visited before - good on Lee for hosting this link up every week:

Mrs Pickles at Mrs Pickles Garden
Tessa Marie at The Sewing Chick


Sunday, 25 November 2012

Alice's Birthday Bag :)

Oh we've had fun today! There's nothing like spending 6 hours with a thirteen year old to make you appreciate how unimportant the 9-5 stresses of working life really are ... she's the best company and I knew most of the music we listened to on the radio :)

This post contains lots of pictures so I'm going to keep the text to a minimum and the pictures tell the story really well. Firstly, please meet Alice ... today is part of her birthday present with 'mad Aunty Jenni' ... I love this kid and she loves ... sweets!

Practising her 1/4" seams:

Auditioning fabrics ... we're going to make a bag:

Chain piecing ... still lots of sweets there:

Now that's what I call a perfect 1/4" ... good job, Alice:

Making the inside pocket ... ok, Alice, I could have left you a little more room to pull it through! She was in stitches ... I put her ' problem solving' skills to great use:

Making the lining ... hey, where have all the sweets gone?? I was at the ironing board for like 5 minutes!! 

All component parts ready for assembly:

Button sewing, she's under there somewhere:

And finally after a little unpicking ( yes, Alice, I should have listened to you when you said the button holder didn't look like it was on the right side!):

One very sweet and funny birthday girl with a unique bag:

Thank you, Alice, I have had such a fabby day :)

Friday, 23 November 2012

A little finish ...

Whilst I am really enjoying making my Farmer's Wife Quilt, making 6 blocks a week takes up a lot of time. I have managed to make a Pants Bag this week but nothing else :( 

I made this one for my friend Ian - he's the coolest guy I know and a retro 70s Pants Bag will hopefully suit him:

Just home from a fabby night out with Ian and friends. We ended up at a great Thai restaurant in Covent Garden and he really likes his Pants Bag:

Looking forward to the weekend as I intend to work on SIL's Amsterdam Quilt tomorrow and my friend's 13 year old daughter, Alice, will be coming to spend a day sewing with me on Sunday ... not sure what we're going its make yet ... its her birthday treat so she can choose EXACTLY what she wants :) 

Linkng up to Crazy Mom Quilts Finish it up Friday 

Have a great weekend of sewing!

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Farmer's Wife Fabby Friday (6)

Am I late or early? Well, I didn't get any blocks made last week :( but I have finished this week's a day early :) and it's Friday somewhere in the world!! Happy Friday, Australia!

These 6 little beauties came together quite quickly this week, though they still are a bit fiddly and you really must keep looking at the picture in the book as you sew all the pieces together - its so easy to assume you know the position and then you crack on under your own speed ... Oops, thank goodness for a seam ripper, hey?!

So, here are my latest 6 blocks (now up to 36 ... yay!) #4 Basket Weave - got to be the easiest block in the book and it still went skewiff - look at the 'wonkiness' of the top left square - oh well,  one saying I'll definitely take from making this quilt - 'it's good enough': 

#5 Bat Wing:

#9 Box:

#15 Buzzard's Roost:

#23 Country Farm:

#29 Economy:

 And all 6:

I think my favourite this week is #23 ... what's yours?

Friday, 16 November 2012

A quilt for a cousin :)

I'm very pleased to have finished this lapquilt which I've made for Nick's cousin, Marisa who lives in Harrisburg, PA. Sadly last year, Marisa and Jimmy were amongst the many people who were emergency evacuated as a result of Tropical Storm Lee ... they lost everything :(

My little quilt won't replace their treasures, family photographs or make everything better but I hope this surprise gift will bring a smile to her face. My inspiration for the design and fabric choices come from Marisa's love of English Country Gardens:

I paper pieced the centre square and then made the rest up as I went along! I think it's worked out well - better balanced than I hoped for and whilst pink and orange isn't a typical colour combination, I like how it adds a bit of pizzazz to the overall look. 

I wanted simplicity on the back - I used the pink from the front and some green Moda Marbles to frame it:

and, of course, finshed it off with a label:

I so look forward to that time in quilt making when you're about to start quilting it and I went through my usual little routine so that we (me and my machine) were perfectly ready:

1) Clean my machine ... Ugh, where does all that fluff come from?
2) Change to a new quilting needle
3) Choose my thread and make enough bobbins
4) Prepare the 2 1/4" folded binding
5) Grab DH to help me baste (I LOVE whoever designed 505 spray!)
6) Turn on the radio and start quilting

This little loveliness will be in the post to USA tomorrow - hopefully it will arrive in time for Christmas :)

Linking up to Crazy Mom Quilts Finish it up Friday

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Amazing generosity ... paying it forward :)

I first started reading quilting blogs after my skiing accident in January 2011 and it took me a year to find the confidence (and learn the new skills!) to start my own blog. It took months to get some followers outside of my family (I don't have sponsors, do giveaways and I wasn't linking up!) and to start sharing comments and in this post I 'met' my 'Quilting Twin' Tonya from Texas and we hit it off immediately.

From a little exchange about charm packs in September, I must have planted a seed because this week in the post I received from Tonya not 1, not 3, not 7 but TEN, yes 10 charm packs!! I know. She is the most generous, kind lady and she also included some yardage:

I was (and remain!) overwhelmed and immediately felt the need to repay Tonya's generosity. So, I have decided to make two quilts from this gift:

1) For a soldier through the UK arm of Quilts of Valor 
2) For a Hurricane Sandy survivor, this worthy cause is being co-ordinated by Luana at eQuilter

I will post my progress, so keep coming back. Once again, Tonya, thank you - thank you - thank you, you're a little angel :) I'm sorry you're not blogging at the moment as I can't link my post to you but, hopefully, you'll get some quilty gratitude comments from here :)

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Farmer's Wife Fabby Friday (5)

I'm so happy I got my 6 blocks done this week (even if a day late - though, who's counting?) so I'm now at 30 ... only 20 to go if I stick to my original plan. I'm still enjoying making them but these little blocks with all the tiny pieces are very time consuming - don't you think? 

First up #72 Railroad:

#81 Snowball:

#98 Waterwheel:

#102 Whirlpool:

#103 Whirlwind:

#108 Windmill:

And all 6:

I also finished Marisa's quilt back, the label and binding so with DH's help, we'll be basting after church tomorrow then I'll be quilting it in the afternoon ... yay!!

Hope you've had a good day too :)

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Runaway Week :(

I'm not sure I'm going to get any sewing time this week and that makes me a bit sad :( the week is just running away without me and I'm out tonight and tomorrow after work and have three adorable little girls coming for a sleepover on Friday so ... no chance really! And you know, I'm not really really sad - I'm thankful.  Thankful for the friends I'm meeting up with in the evenings after work and thankful that our dear friends trust us and allow us to 'borrow' their children from time to time (they're thankful too as they get a night out at the Cinema and a Saturday lie-in!)

So, whilst pondering where the week has gone, I can't help but also think where has the year gone? And, if I can't make a new quilt this week, I'll look back at some of the 'old' ones I have made and how the garden photos changed to reflect the year passing ...

The winter - February 2012 - saw the second in a series of five 'USA' quilts for my cousins in America - this one was for Lauren:

The spring - June 2012 - saw another 'USA' quilt for cousin Jeanie:

The summer (apparently we did have one!) - August 2012 - and the final 'USA' quilt for cousin June:

The autumn - October 2012 - and a quilt for my dear Aunty G:

Looking back, I am also thankful to have all these lovely ladies in my life x

The weekend will soon be here and I plan to finish a quilt for another cousin and make some more Amsterdam blocks for dear SIL's Christmas Pressie quilt.

Hope you have a good week - whatever time allows you to do with it :)

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Finished Quilt :)

I'm really pleased to have finished this lap quilt for my Aunty G before the deadline of our visit to Wales in a couple of weeks time ... YAY!!! Aunty G asked for something 'bright' ... your wish is my command, m'dear:

I used a mixture of MODA's Oops a Daisy charm pack and some bright fabrics and I free motion quilted it (stippling / meandering) with lemon cotton:

And pieced the back around a 1/2 yard of MODA's Brown Lazy Daisy (which was one of the charm pack fabrics):

Finished quilt: 60" x 60"
Cutting and piecing: about 10 hours
Batting: Hobbs Heirloom 80/20
FMQing: 2-3 hours
Binding: 2 1/4" Fabric Freedom's NottingHill Heart Vines (green and orange)
Hand sewing Binding: 3hours

Linking up to Crazy Mom Quilts Finish it up Friday

Friday, 2 November 2012

Farmers Wife Fabby Friday (4)

Or not so fabby this week ... grrrrrrrr! Block #47 (Homemaker) was on my list of 6 blocks to make this week and I just could NOT do the 'y' seam. I have sewn one before but this feels somewhat different - almost like there's an extra seam in there ... anyway, it was beyond my limited sewing skills so I put it to one side (for now) and found a substitute :) Here are my 6 blocks this week (which takes me to 24):

First up, #31 Evening Star

#40 Friendship Block

#56 Maple Leaf

#58 Mother's Dream

#71 Puss in the Corner

#109 Windows

And all 6:

And Nell ... double grrrrrrrr - like she couldn't have sat off my blocks?

Do you have a favourite this week?