"It takes ages to finish a quilt you're not working on!"

Thursday, June 28, 2012

HUGE stash lots!

And I mean REALLY huge - hence the capital letters! No, not my stash; I'll never again think that I have too much. I was visiting some of the blogs on my side bar, and April over at Sew To Speak had written a post about her stash. She also mentioned a Flickr Group where people are posting photos of their stash, so I went over to have a look. OMG - just check this out!!

Interlude between quilt tops Jars of preserves.

I love to make small projects inbetween large ones like charity quilt tops, or ongoing commitments such the CQ Challenge. These small jobs are items that I've seen in magazines, or kits that I've bought at craft shows, and are just waiting for an idle moment...what is that? Ha ha.

I have seen this design made up as wall hangings and quilts at quilt shows in recent years, and when I saw the pattern in a magazine, I put it in my 'to do' file. I had heaps of fruit and vegie fabric left over after I'd made The Pantry wall hanger for Ken's grand-nieces, so all I had to do was find the time. Yesterday was The Day. And that is all it took to make this cute table topper or mat, whatever you want to call it. Instead of making a full size quilt as in the pattern, I simply used one of each fabric print for my jars.
The backing fabric is one of the fabrics that my kind friend Jess brought over from her Mum's stash (waves to Jess!) I thought the fruity design was appropriate. All I have to do now is hand quilt it. Probably just running stitch around the jars.

So what is next? No choice for this one - I have two days to finish my June block for the CQ challenge! "Watch this space" ;-

Two framed cross stitched pictures for sale.

I don't really know if anyone reading my blog would be interested in these, but it is worth a try, for those of you in Melbourne anyway.
I work one day a week at the Brotherhood of St L. opshop in Eltham, and these two pictures are presently hanging on the wall of the shop for sale at $25 each.
Do you think that is too much to ask? It is more than what we usually price things for at the BSL, and the original volunteer who priced them put $5 on them, but I objected, and the manager agreed with me - the amount of work, as the stitching is perfect, and the cost of framing alone, more than justifies a price of $25.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Tartan Quilt Top No.2 finished

Yaaaay!! Finished it tonight. Quite different from the original pattern I started with, but I took a shortcut by simply sewing the blocks of 3 bits all together in rows, instead of keeping them separate with sashing down the middle as well as across.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Another lay out for tartan blocks

Thank you ladies for your comments on the previous post.  At this stage I'm still just playing with the blocks to see what happens next.  Today I finished all the blocks, and laid them out on the floor again, but in a different configuration.  After looking at the photo in the magazine, I decided to pair up all the blocks, which means (a) less sashing between them, therefore faster to finish the top., and less lining up and matching edges to do, if I'd decided to sew them together without sashing.   I could also try placing the new double blocks the other way around....back tomorrow with another photo, and a final decision.  This quilt top has to be finished long before the end of winter!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Tartan blocks for next quilt cover.

I've started sewing pieces together for the blocks for my next Oz Comfort quilt top.  I'm following a pattern in a Patchwork & Quilting from 1998, which has fabric cut into 3" x 7" strips then sewn together to make blocks which are then joined by sashing.

I've made about half the quantity I need for my quilt top and laid them out on the floor last night in different configurations, to see how they looked.   Here are three ways of doing it; I haven't made up my mind yet.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Variety is the spice of life.

Wanting to do more than one craft project at once is both rewarding and frustrating, don't you think? I love having a choice of things to do, and being free to do what I like, when I like. But the frustrating part is not finishing one project completely because I've got sidetracked and started something else!
Today at least I made a start on two projects with time frames. The first was my CQ ties block for June.

The theme is Winter, so the ties I picked to use were blue, black, silver and generally cool colours. The bit in the middle with the foggy looking bridge and clouds was part of a tie with a larger picture of just that - a foggy night time scene somewhere that looked like London.

The second thing I did was cut out lengths of tartan fabric required for my next Oz Comfort quilt top.

But while I was doing this, I was thinking of something I saw last night online, where a quilter had used small strips of fabric to make long rows, and sewn them together to make a quilt. It nagged away at my brain until I couldn't wait any longer. It took me about an hour to get out my bag of scrappy strips and made these. What fun - it cleared out one of my scrappy bags, and it will come in useful to make something in the near future!
I had a small furry person for company while I was working.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Vintage Aprons show

I have just posted a series of photos on my Aprons blog, which I took last weekend at an exhibition of vintage embroidered aprons. It is currently on at the Buda Homestead in Hunter Street Castlemaine, and finished on 30th June. Well worth seeing, both aprons and the homestead.

Tartan ties CQ block finished

At last I've finished this block. It should have been completed weeks ago, and the June block should be started by now, but I got side tracked by other projects.
This block looks a bit tatty because I hadn't pressed it before taking the photo, and the edges aren't trimmed neatly but I'm not concerned. Just happy that it is off my table and I can get on with another project. Which will be? Probably my next donation quilt top for Oz Comfort Quilts; I still have a big stack of tartan fabrics waiting to be made up.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Coffee Cosy

Anne, one of my bloggy friends in Sydney, is a prolific cross stitcher, and knowing my passion for peacocks, last year she made a beautiful little peacock pincushion for me. Earlier she had expressed interest in a coffee cosy that I'd made for another friend, so I promised I would make one for Anne. Not knowing the size of her coffee plunger, I made a small one first, but decided I didn't like it, so it never got sent. A few months ago I thought I'd better pull the finger out and make Anne another one (although she'd probably long since given up on getting one!). Knowing her favourite colour is blue, and that she loves ducks like I love peacocks, this is what I came up with. I didn't want to say anything on my blog until she'd received it, but I got a delighted email from her the other day, so now I can post a pic.

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Crewel work owl and fabulous embroidered peacock.

Today I received a parcel in the mail from Jan in Canada. Jan's blog is about vintage quilts that she fixes up, and also her collection of scarves. Along her travels, she picks up all kinds of interesting textiles, and lets me know if there is something that might appeal to me. In exchange, I keep an eye out at opshops for the scarves that I think she will like. I am forever grateful to whoever invented the internet, which has provided people all over the world with opportunities to make contact with others who share their passions!

Here is what Jan found for me:
A bell pull in crewel embroidery featuring the cutest owls!

And this stunning embroidered cushion cover. The peacock design is repeated at the other end of the fabric, but it hasn't been made up into the cover. Jan and I agree that this was probably sewn in the early 20th century, as the threads are real silk, not stranded cotton - and it was rarely used during or after WW2.

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Lovely vintage supper cloth.

This cloth arrived at the opshop where I work on Friday. I pounced on it of course, and my boss put a very reasonable price on it! It's now soaking in Napisan along with two doilies (below)that I found today at the Salvos for 50c each.

Saturday, June 02, 2012

Sample block for tartan quilt top.

When I make up a quilt top from blocks, I like to keep an extra block for myself after the quilt has gone to someone else, as a kind of memento. With the tartan quilt, each piece of fabric was a block on its own, so I decided to make a mini version of the 'bricks' pattern which I used for the quilt top.

I've been going through all the magazines that I've been buying in recent months, sorting out which ones to keep, and marking the pages that have projects I'd like to try. Now that's done, and all the marked projects are written in my "To Do" journal, but the next item that MUST be done is to finish my Tartan Ties CQ block. I just have to embellish the seams; all the threads, buttons, etc. are ready to be sewn on. No More Distractions, Miss Gina!