Jelly Rolling Along

Recently, I decided to use some of the “historical” items in my stash…..those which had originally been bought with great purpose and then left to languish, in favour of other more demanding (of my attention) projects.

Among such fabrics was a Moda Jelly Roll given to me in 2007, and the matching border fabric I purchased to put with it. It is from the Three Sisters “Sanctuary” range.

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Border fabric and some of the jelly roll strips.

I had a pattern in mind, from Heather Mulder Peterson’s book “On a Roll”.

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Pattern book.

 

In fact the pattern I wanted to use for my jelly roll quilt is the one featured on the cover.

The pattern uses the Easy Angle Tool by Sharon Hultgren to cut triangles from the jelly roll strips, but I don’t own this gadget, so made a plastic template to use as a cutting guide instead.

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My easy angle template.

As you can see from the photo, I marked the cutting lines in pencil and then cut with an acrylic ruler and rotary cutter.  (It is NOT safe to try to cut along the edge of the plastic template with your rotary cutter!!)

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My stack of triangles grows.

 

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Cutting the components.

Once I had all components cut, I was ready to chain piece.

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Chain piecing in progress.

The centre part of the quilt is made up of 18 ten inch blocks. In the next photo these blocks are set out on the floor, as I trialled various  placement arrangements.

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Trying out various placement arrangements.

And this is what they look like now that they are sewn together.

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Joined blocks awaiting their borders.

All (?!!) I have to do now is add the 2 borders, a narrow inner one and a wider outer one, and my quilt top will be ready for quilting.  Hopefully this will happen soon and I will be able to blog about the completed quilt!!

 

Bits and Bobs or Dis and Dat

I haven’t got any major projects to ‘flaunt’ this blog post.  Just chipping away at all the things I should be finishing and the list grows.  I have to report that I have finished my 21st Century Round Robin Modern Quilt borders.

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I was undecided on what to do with the borders – to bag them out – or put a traditional border in various colours matching the  quilt.  In the end I went with a two colour border, and I ‘m very happy with it.   Looking at the photo, it seems to show the border is slightly wobbly – it isn’t! and that it varies in width – it doesn’t!!

The next project I have finished, is one for my patchwork guild’s ‘art quilt group’.  One of our clever members Marion, demonstrated how to monotype print.  It was the first time I had done anything like this, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Such luck if you managed to get something looking good!! You had no control over what the end product would be – though with time, and experience this would not be the case.    We were asked to make something with our samples – and here is my result using two prints and some of my hand dyed fabrics. I have ‘embellished’ them with straight line quilting or crosses  in Ne 12.

Monotype Printing

Threads Monotype printing

Finally, I was lucky enough to do a workshop with Amanda Daly, a patchwork tutor from New South Wales.  We spent a weekend making “Ocean Jewels”.  It was relaxed fun class and some speedy sewers managed to get theirs nearly completed in the weekend. However, I am still to put mine together – but will enjoy working on it slowly.   It is a bit like a puzzle – some components need to be  placed together to make up the final wall quilt.

"Folded" square

“Folded” square

 

Another  - just like the other!

Another – just like the other!

Strip Side Bar

‘Seaweed strips” and side stripe bar

Oh for some more hours in the day – and time just to sew!

Romantic French Hearts Revisited

In February this year I blogged about my Romantic French Hearts http://alwaysquilting.wordpress.com/2014/02/11/tuesday-treats-romantic-french-hearts/

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I made these using a pattern in Volume 14 Number 12 of Australian Homespun Magazine.

 

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Soon after this, I was contacted by the magazine editor to see if I wished to have my hearts considered for the Readers’  Showcase page. I agreed to do so and supplied a couple of photos and a short accompanying explanation.

Some months passed and I had basically forgotten about doing this.

Then…last month, while waiting for my flight at Cairns airport, I was browsing at the newsagency, when (to my astonishment and delight) I spied my hearts in the recent edition of Homespun.

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Here’s how they look.

 

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What a thrill to see my humble little hearts in print!

Twenty First Century Quilting Plan

A few weeks ago we were treated to the first of four 21st Century Round Robin quilts. The quilting always changes the look of a quilt and these little gems are no exception.

I wanted to do something very modern and edgy. Using the idea of Twitter communication for inspiration, I thought I would quilt my ‘Tweet’. I drew my Tweet on non-fusible interfacing;  quilted through the interfacing on the drawn lines; then removed the interfacing to reveal the message.

Quilting design drawn on interfacing

Quilting design drawn on interfacing

 

I changed the thread colour to match the fabric colour. I have used Aurifil Mako 40wt cotton AND Aurifil Mako 50wt cotton.

Aurifil has a colour for every fabric

Aurifil has a colour for every fabric

Aurifil Cotton Mako 40wt and 50wt thread

Aurifil Cotton Mako 40wt and 50wt thread

 

The Hash-tag and letters needed to ‘pop’ and the ‘matchstick’ quilting was easy to complete with FMQ (free motion quilting).

Hash-Tag symbol 'pops' when left unquilted

Hash-Tag symbol ‘pops’

Free Motion Quilting

Free Motion Quilting around ‘U’

I have photographed this little quilt at an angle so the message can be seen in relief.

Twitter Message

Twitter Message

This little quilt says it all about creating with Aurifil….#FUN.

Quilter on Vacation

I have just returned home to Melbourne after three wonderful warm weeks in Queensland.  While the weather was not always sunny and dry, we always found things to occupy ourselves: a mixture of sight-seeing, exploring new places and revisiting familiar haunts, picnicking (almost every day), and most importantly relaxing!

Whenever I head off on holiday I am always accompanied by my good friends, my collection of handcraft projects, and this time was no exception.  ( The count this time was something like three applique items, one embroidery and four knitting projects).  I know some would be horrified by this, but this is the way I enjoy myself.. and that’s what a holiday is all about.

Stitching begins on the plane.

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Blunt-tipped scissors are great for use when flying.

 

I am sure that members of the public find my activity quite strange… but I don’t care as I’m happily doing what I love.

 

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Stitching by the sea.

In the photo above (taken by the marina at Yorkey’s Knob) I am the little green blob sitting beneath the rock, right in the centre of the shot.  On this occasion I was working on my embroidery.

A local resident provided some entertainment by bogging his ute in the sand in spectacular fashion.

While I stitch, hubby does this.

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Taken in the same spot before the cloud cleared.

No bites on this occasion.  Bites are not always what you want…. this was waiting on the bank, 50 metres from a popular fishing spot on the Mowbray River,  just south of Port Douglas.

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Three metre croc waiting for dinner.

We visited a number of markets on our travels.  I purchased a second-hand quilt book at one of them.

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Second-hand book in as -new condition.

I can’t read Japanese so I don’t know what it’s called, but it’s full of interesting quilts and patterns.

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We drove up the range to the Atherton Tablelands several times. A favourite place to visit is the quaint town of Yungaburra where we walked along the river in the hope of spotting a platypus.  We think we did, but it was such a fleeting flash in the water,  it’s hard to be sure.  We also inspected the new Avenue of Honour, recently established to honour Australian service personnel who have given their lives in Afghanistan. We thought this has been very tastefully done and provides a peaceful place to reflect and be thankful for all that we have in Australia.  It’s worth a visit.

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Avenue of Honour at Yungaburra.

One of my holiday projects was to make clamshells for a quilt border. However I discovered I’d left most of my spare papers behind. GRRR!!  Well one has to be resourceful in such circumstances and so a used cracker packet came in handy (being careful not to enlarge the size as I went!)  Later I discovered a tourist brochure was even more suitable.  The papers in my project tell a story!

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Tracing and cutting more clamshell shapes.

The tools in my sewing box came in handy for more than I’d planned.  In addition to sewing a button on hubby’s trousers and repairing a hole which mysteriously appeared in my cardigan, a pin was required to unblock a fishing sinker. It obviously pays to be prepared!!

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Not your usual sewing project!

Hope springs eternal in the heart of all fishermen and here we are at another fishing spot, this time near Bramston Beach.  You can see my book and knitting on the rock…. so no prizes for guessing what I did here.

 

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Some fish were biting, but they were too small to keep.  Meanwhile, as I enjoyed the view, I too was getting lots of bites… of the sandfly variety. Despite repellent, I was soon covered in bites which stayed with me for many days. Thank goodness for anti-histamines.

 

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The perfect view (not so perfect sandflies).

All too soon our holiday ended, but we returned home relaxed and refreshed (and itchy).

 

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Flying out of Cairns.

Quilting the 21st C Round Robin

Further to my post on 25 July 2014, about the Round Robin blocks we organised at Always Quilting, I had lots of fun quilting my “Modern Quilt”.
threads I need to tick it off the list of things to do – as I know that the year is racing along and it has to be completed as soon as I can.  The pile of other projects to be completed is increasing rather than decreasing, and I find if I can get a small project quilted I feel a sense of accomplishment.

More quilting

After looking at this little quilt for ages, I decided to machine quilt wavy lines, and then circles in certain areas to mimic the pattern already there.

Yellow thread

The machining was done with the wonderful Ne 40 – in matching colours to the fabrics  1148,1135,4250(a variegated) and 2525.

quilted circles

I found Aurifil has a gorgeous variegated gold (3920) in the colours I wanted. The  more subtle change of the Ne 12 which I used for all the  hand quilting  was just perfect.

Quilting Thread

Now all I have to do is put a binding on the quilt – that is the next decision to be made – will I do a traditional binding  ??or one that is less obvious??  I call it ‘bagging the quilt out I don’t know the ‘correct’ term – but it means the binding is not obvious  on the front – more like a facing used in dressmaking.  So – still a little bit more work before I can display it properly!

 

Another Day; Another Scrap Quilt

Last week I shared my Square in a Square scrap quilt and discussed my choice of quilting thread.

Today I will discuss my choice of piecing thread on a scrap quilt. I have been working on an ‘Easy Big Block’ Pineapple quilt, designed by Cindi Edgerton for McCall’s, using only white and red fabrics.

When I say ‘red fabric’, I really mean anything remotely looking red in my stash.

Blocks with fabrics that 'read' red

Blocks with fabrics that ‘read’ red

And then, of course, when I say ‘white fabric’, it could be beige, tan or snow white.

White Fabrics...compared to the red fabric

White Fabrics…compared to the red fabric

This type of quilt construction lends itself to a production line approach sewing strips of fabric to the paper foundation, following the numbers in order.

Tissue Paper Foundations from Cindi Edgerton

Tissue Paper Foundations from Cindi Edgerton

I don’t want to worry about my thread colour choice becoming an issue with each new fabric addition.

Here are the threads I considered on several pieced blocks.

Auditioning Aurifil thread  colours

Auditioning Aurifil thread colours

I decided on the Aurifil Mako 40wt Colour 2900. It is ‘neutral’ enough to blend with my ‘white’ fabrics and ‘brown’ enough to blend with my ‘reds’.

Decision Made!

Decision Made!

I can wind several bobbins and sit and sew without changing my thread colour every time the fabric colour changes.

It is helpful to have a range of basic piecing colours so you can choose the right one for your current scrap piecing.

Several Panels are ready to stitch together

Several Panels are ready to stitch together

The ‘basic’ , or MUST HAVE Aurifil thread colours are different for each of us. What are yours? Personally I want them all!

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