Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Giving something back - Siblings Together

So many fabulous fabrics, so many wonderful patterns, so many generously provided free tutorials. We quilters are a lucky bunch to have access to so many goodies and such a great online community.  I've only been quilting for 18 months and blogging for 3 but I've been touched by the help & support I've received

But maybe you wonder what to do with all your quilts, to repay a little of the generosity shown (definitely) or want to use your quilting to help others?

Well Lynne of Lily's Quilts has had a great idea.  Now I'm quite sure if you read this blog you also read hers - if not, why not?  Seriously it is a fab blog.  In fact you should head over there right now now to read about her plan to gather quilts for Siblings Together

Maybe you have a quilt that you fell out of love with whilst making; one that you love but don't use that needs a new home; a WIP that has been sitting sad and uncompleted, passed over for something new and exciting.

Or maybe, like me, there are patterns you'd like to try or fabrics you'd like to use that wouldn't fit in your home.

Then why not donate, finish or start a quilt and help Lynne gather enough quilts (around 50) to send each of the kids home from camp this summer with one. 

I'm thinking about this one:
Or this one:
Or this one:
Or maybe this one:

All from Moda Bakeshop

I've seen how much my kids love snuggling in their quilts when they are tired or sad - wouldn't it be nice to give that sort of comfort to these kids, who may have been bereaved or experienced the uglier side of human nature?

Surely that is worth little bit of our fabric and time?


Wednesday, 21 March 2012

WIP Wednesday

Wednesday again and not much blogging but plenty of sewing.

I got slightly freaked out over the weekend about how much sewing I'd set myself to finish by the end of the month - so I pulled myself together and got sewing!

In progress

Twiggy Lattice quilt
Quilt top is finished

I had a bit of a wobble when the pink border went on - the colour is a perfect match to the centres of the flowers and one of the prints but it just looked too bright.  Once the outer taupe border was on I was much happier with it, more like the pop of colour I had in mind.  However I'm rethinking the plan to bind it with the pink, I've got enough taupe so I think I'll go with that.

Hoping to get the pieced back done by the end of the week and then basted at the weekend (will need J's help).  Then on with the quilting.  My mum arrives on 5th April so that is the deadline (eeek).

Paper Pieced tote bags
One one down (well still need to finish the turning gap in the lining), two to go.

Excuse the rubbish photo of the inside - taken in a hurry and didn't realize the focus was off until I loading it onto the computer.

I think the After School ladies will like them - the others have to be finished by Wednesday as Thursday is the Wee Chap's last day.

No progress
Building block baby quilt
Alice Mixtape quilt
Our bed quilt

Hope everyone else had a productive week


Linking up with

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

WIP Wednesday - Paper piecing edition


Wednesday again and I didn't think I'd have much to show but J was away last night and both the kids were in bed asleep by just after 7.30pm (a rare occurrence in this house!) so I got a good few hours sewing in without feeling I was being antisocial.

No finishes this week

In progress
Paper pieced tote bags

Well it is official - paper piecing is my new favourite thing! I've finished the three pieced blocks that will form panels on my tote bags

Evening star (already posted about) - from Swim Bike Quilt

Rolling star by Marcia Hohn at Quilter's Cache

Circle of flying geese from Piece by Number

So pleased by how they turned out.  The plan now is to make them up into tote bags - I'm thinking black outside and a different bright colour for each lining.

Twiggy Lattice quilt
Four patch blocks are made and layout planned

I'm hoping to get some sewing done on this tonight.

No progress
Building blocks baby quilt - do want to get this done but not the same time pressure as there is for some of the projects.

King size bed quilt

Linking up with
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced 

Now I'm off to sew but I'll be checking what everyone else has been up to later

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Paper piecing & stash building


I've had a lovely few days.  The joys of paper piecing continue:

This is Evening star from the Summer Sampler Series - tutorial here.  A slight misalignment between the two blue points but I'm really pleased with it.  It is destined to become part of a tote bag for one of the ladies who run the wee chap's after school club.

On Saturday I went to Chilford Hall Spring Quilt Show with two of my lovely friends, Jill & Anna.  We met at NCT ante natal classes and have become close friends.  We try to have a sewing evening together at least once a month.

We went to Chilford Autumn Quilt show last year but it was a bit of a disaster as we went on the Friday and Anna & I had our younger children (almost 2 yrs old) with us.  Yes with hindsight it was crazy but we just didn't realise how busy it would be or how little space there would be.

So we decided we would go on the Saturday this year so that our other halves could have the kids.  It was bliss.  We got there just as the doors opened, had a wander and a first look at all the stalls and then oohed and aahed at the display quilts (I took my camera but never got round to taking any photos) - loads of inspiration.  After a little bit of lunch we split up and started shopping.  My plan was to stash build and my aim was to steer clear of pre-cuts, collection bundles or multi-coloured fabrics (all of which I have plenty of already). 

Amazingly I succeeded!  I got a few metres
Some half metres
And some fat quarters
And all for less than £80 - hurrah!

We were shopped out by about 3pm so we headed home but stopped at a garden centre with a nice cafe for coffee & cake and a chance to inspect all the purchases.  And then home in time for tea.

We already have plans for the Autumn!

Hope everyone had a good weekend too.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

WIP Wednesday again


Well yet again I done less sewing than I hoped to but I have accomplished some things

My first paper pieced block!  Obviously I've still to decide what to do with it but I'm totally hooked and have a list of other blocks I want to try!

Ongoing projects

Twiggy lattice quilt
Most of the cutting is done so I just need to get sewing!

Baby quilt 
After much internal debate I've started free motion quilting it.  I have tried FMQ on practice squares previously without much success - loads of skipped stitches and snarls.  But since it is one of my goals for 2012 one of the things I did do this week was a load of reading.  Since the main suggestions were to first try changing needle and/or thread I did both.  It turns out that my machine is MUCH happier to FMQ with polyester thread.  So after several much more successful practice squares I decided to take the plunge

I am well aware that it is not perfect (not even close) and it is more of a scribble than the smooth loopy pattern (definitely harder to keep it smooth and easy on an actual quilt) but I'm still glad I went for it as I think it is ok.  

No progress
Our bed quilt

New projects
The wee chap's after school club is closing at the end of term - he will be really sad as he loves it, regularly getting grumpy when we arrive as he doesn't want to leave (thankfully the school are starting their own one in house so at least that is sorted) and I wanted to make something for the three fantastic ladies that run it.  Given my new addiction to paper piecing I've decided to make them each a tote bag with a paper pieced block on each one.  These will have to be finished before 29th March so will have to get my act together.  At least this should use up a few of my scraps!

Linking up with

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced


Thursday, 1 March 2012

New stuff & Small blog meet

A couple of new things here

New fabric

Well new to me at least.  It is Twiggy by Sanae which I think came out a couple of years ago but my LQS were selling off the layer cake last month at a price I couldn't resist.  I had no real plan for it but when my Mum was here at half-term she really liked it so I've decided I'll make a quilt for her 60th birthday.

The plan is to make this one
It is a Moda Bakeshop pattern - Lattice quilt by Amy Smart.  I found a Twiggy charm pack and yardage for the back online (also on sale - hooray!).
I'm thinking about quilting hand prints onto the large squares (me, my sister, our kids, my Dad).  What do you think - nice idea or a bit cheesy?

New technique

I had a go at paper piecing last night and I loved it!  I've put off trying it as it looked scary but I love the circle of flying geese I've seen on various blogs.  I thought better not run before I can walk so I started with something a bit simpler

It is the first quarter of the Star block from Fresh Lemon Quilts Summer Sampler Series.  I'm hoping to do the rest tonight - everything is cut out and ready to go.  So excited to have stretched myself a bit.

As it is the 1st of March (Happy St David's day to any Welsh visitors) Lily's Quilts is running her monthly Small Blog meet.  I linked up last month and had some lovely people come to visit and I found some great new blogs so I'm linking up again.

Lily's Quilts

Now I'm off to see who else is linking up.