Are you quilting for a Hawk or an Eagle?

I’ve lived in Victoria long enough to have become accustom to a public holiday for a horse race but one for a football game was a surprise.

Cotton-Mako-28-Hawks-and-Eagles

Now I am not a dedicated follower of the AFL so I am making the most of the day to play with thread …. Aurifil of course and in particular Cotton Mako’ 28, our favourite quilting thread weight.

Cotton-Mako-28-hoop-quilting

But some at Always Quilting are followers, so here is a test that they set up for the committed AFL spectator.

Are you a Hawk?

Cotton-Mako-28-Hawks

Or an Eagle?

Cotton-Mako-28-Eagles

So was that a Hawk?

Cotton-Mako-28-Hawks-revisited

Or an Eagle?

Cotton-Mako-28-Eagles-revisited

So hope you enjoy the game, and still find some time to quilt.

Advertisements

Round Robin Round-up

At the beginning of 2014 the members of the Always Thread team set themselves a challenge, in the form of a round robin quilt project. We wanted this to be a small wall-hanging sized quilt, and one with a very modern feel. To see how we set up the specifications for our challenge go to https://alwaysquilting.wordpress.com/2014/02/07/taking-the-round-robin-into-the-21st-century/

https://alwaysquilting.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/21stc-round-robin.jpg?w=460&h=368

The original four blocks using colours determined by the colour wheel.

 

At various stages in the year we have blogged about our progress and posted photos. To track our progress you can visit https://alwaysquilting.wordpress.com/2014/04/19/round-robin-round-two/ , https://alwaysquilting.wordpress.com/2014/07/25/round-robin-bl…e-21st-century/ , https://alwaysquilting.wordpress.com/2014/08/22/quilting-the-2…-c-round-robin/, and https://alwaysquilting.wordpress.com/2014/09/05/twenty-first-c…-quilting-plan/

At our final handover day the four quilts looked like this…..

Always Quilting Round Robin 2014 Heather and Denise….. and this.

Always Quilting Round Robin 2014 Jenny and Judy

Ladybirdee added both machine and handquilting to her quilt, using two different weights of Aurifil thread. (Ne 40 and 12 respectively).

quilted circles

A combination of hand and machine quilting.

A view from the back shows her extensive quilting.

sewing- blog Nov 2014 050

Back view.

She has also used pieced binding in 2 colours to add to the visual impact.

sewing- blog Nov 2014 049

Judysewforth also added lots of detailed quilting in a very “fun” design!! (#FUN)  Her binding is also pieced in two colours to match the outer border.

sewing- blog Nov 2014 045

Her backing fabric is a bit of fun too. (Sorry about the direction of this photo – WordPress is doesn’t seem to like this photo!)

sewing- blog Nov 2014 046

Jenny found some binding fabric to complement the colours in her quilt and used a variegated thread to machine quilt her project.

sewing- blog Nov 2014 047

sewing- blog Nov 2014 048

The back view.

And as for my quilt….I could not decide how to quilt it and spent ages gazing at it without inspiration! In the end I machine stitched in the ditch to stabilise it (using Aurifil 40 weight), then added modern look hand quilting using Aurufil cotton in 12 weight. I trialled lots of colours before being happy with the apricot/orange I used (colour 2220) which doesn’t really show up very well  in the photo.

sewing- blog Nov 2014 034

Although this project took me very far from my comfort zone, and I engaged in a fair bit of sighing and complaining along the way, it did prove to be an intriguing exercise with interesting quilts as a result.

What about your group? Is anyone up for a challenge? We’d love to hear!

 

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!

 

Wednesday Wonder: Thread Colours for Hand Quilting

Last week we helped a customer choose threads for hand quilting, something that we often do but we don’t always get to see the results.

Well this week Judy L sent me a photo of the quilt ….. just look at her beautiful feather and cross hatch quilting.

Judy-Leckie-feather

I loved this feedback, especially as Judy wanted a thread colour that would add a little contrast to the beige background fabric, so it was interesting to see how the colour selection had worked

Aurifil-Cotton-Mako-Ne28-quilting-colours

We played with several colours from the Cotton Mako’ 28 range.

In fact we spent quite some time agonising over the colours … some looked too dark while others looked too light.

Judy L finally decided upon a deep greenish brown for the feathers and warm brown for the cross hatching.

Aurifil-Cotton-Mako-1318-2340

In her email, Judy commented:

Just thought I would show you this,  the different colours don’t really show

This reminded me of the times that I have helped a customer choose the thread colour when machine quilting.

We have ALL the Aurifil colours at our finger tips, and many spools are open, so we can spread a length of thread across the quilt to preview the effect.

Doing this has made me realise that you don’t have to have the “perfect” colour. More often than not any one of 4 or 5 colours would work, and look good.

As Judy has found with this quilt, as long as the colour she chose was deeper & richer than the fabric colour, and the contrast was pleasing to the eye, it would achieve her desired effect and her hand quilting was always going to be a beautiful feature on the quilt.

 

Modern “One Star”

Recently I had a request from a family member to make a ‘lone star’ modern quilt.  A request is always appreciated – as I tend to make quilts for me – usually because I like a pattern, or a fabric, or I have attended a workshop or because a friend is also making one.  I think there are quite a few other reasons why I have made quilts over the years and quite a few reasons why I have never completed some quilts too!

This new quilt was to be more of a ‘decor’ quilt – to suit a room – and to be relatively modern in appearance.  By that I mean with minimal quilting (YES!!) and with few colours.   I suggested a visit to the local hardware shop to find some paper paint samples in the appropriate colours would be necessary.  Using them I was able to purchase the fabrics and have a colour palette to work with.  I choose a deep charcoal grey for the background, and this ‘set off’ the aquas, pink and yellow colours well.

I had never sewn a lone star quilt before, but luckily a friend had a Nancy Johnson-Srebro book called “big one-star quilts by magic” in her extensive collection of quilting and patchwork books. The pattern book cleverly uses squares and rectangles to make up the star,  rather than cutting strips into diamonds and then sewing them together.

Nancy Johnson-Srebro

Using Nancy’s instructions I was able to easily follow what to do.  Well – it was kind of easy – except I started sewing at a quilt retreat, and one does have to concentrate when putting colours together in the correct order!!

My block pattern

Once I had all the top pieced, I machine quilted it with Aurifil (of course) in Ne 40 and then hand quilted minimally with Ne 12.

Basting with pins and marking with tape for the quilting

Basting with pins and marking with tape for the quilting

 

Simple quilting with Ne 12 in pink on the soft aqua fabric

Simple quilting with Ne 12 in pink on the soft aqua fabric

The quilting colours

The quilting colours

I added a row of flying geese top and bottom to add length to the quilt as well as pick up the colours used in the main star.

Flying geese border

I am hoping the recipients  are pleased with the end result – if not, there is a home in my house for the quilt, as I have really come to love it!!

Finished quilt

 

Tuesday Treats: One Aurifil size does NOT have to fit all (part 3)

I’ve already written about Cotton Mako’ 40 & Cotton Mako 28 so now it is time to feature Cotton Mako’ 12

A selection of Cotton Mako' 12 threads

A selection of Cotton Mako’ 12 threads

This is the thickest thread in the Cotton Mako’ range.

Cotton Mako' 12 is the thickest thread in the range

Cotton Mako’ 12 is the thickest thread in the range

It works beautifully as a substitute for traditional hand embroidery stranded floss or pearl threads as:

  • It does not require splitting and re-aligning before use
  • The threads do not split when the stitches are formed
  • The thread has a smoother twist when compared to a pearl thread so it is easy to pull through the fabric
Zoe Clifton's beautiful embroidery design stitched in Cotton Mako' 12

Zoe Clifton’s beautiful embroidery design stitched in Cotton Mako’ 12

Try it for stress free modern hand quilting

Cushions using Cotton Mako' Ne 12 for the hand stitching detail

Cushions using Cotton Mako’ Ne 12 for the hand stitching detail

or for bold machine quilting

Bold machine quilting looks good when stitched in Cotton Mako' 12

Bold machine quilting looks good when stitched in Cotton Mako’ 12

Cotton Mako’ 12 also gives great results when used for crochet

Try your hand at crocheting with Cotton Mako' 12

Try your hand at crocheting with Cotton Mako’ 12

or Punchneedle embroidery

Punchneedle embroidery with Cotton Mako' 12

More Cotton Mako’ 12 delights to be found on these pages:

Christmas@knitsnquilts

Each year, at this time, we bring out our collection of Christmas decorations.  It is always enjoyable, taking off the wrapping and being re-acquainted with the items, some of which have been part of family traditions for many years, others of which have been recently made or purchased.  It’s a bit like an annual reunion!!

Allow me to take you on a tour of some of my Christmas decorations.

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 008

The Advent wreath.

The first to go up is the Advent wreath, which marks the four weeks prior to Christmas.

Spring 2013 026

Our oldest nativity.

We have a number of nativity sets. This is the oldest (sorry about the flash reflection). The clothing is actually real fabric dipped in some kind of starching solution. Poor Joseph gets a bit “tipsy” each year and has to be supported with Blutak!

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 005

A newer, more glitzy nativity.

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 014

A simple Peruvian nativity.

Parts of our house have a blue carpet, so a number of years ago, we added blue decorations to our collection.

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 021

Blue and silver Christmas tree decorations.

Although the blue tree lights were on when I took this photo, they don’t really show up here.  What does show up however(big sigh) is the lack of tree skirt.  One is in the making, and I am currently quilting it using Aurifil Cotton Mako 12, but I suspect is in danger of becoming a new year’s resolution(again)!!

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 007

More blue decorating.

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 015

My Heartwood Creek angel by Jim Shore….blue of course!

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 017

Patchwork table centrepiece.

You may recognise this one, made for last Christmas using a Marg Low pattern.

Newly made in 2012.

And the latest piece, purchased just yesterday!

Spring 2013 025

My latest decoration purchased yesterday.

A number of years ago, pre-patchwork , I made Christmas wreaths.

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 010

Wreath about 30cm diameter.

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 012

Smaller wreath. This one is about 15cm diameter.

My daughter-in-law’s mother is a talented cook and makes many Gingerbread houses each year.

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 001

A pleasure to look at and to eat!

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 013

Hand appliqued and hand quilted runner.

And of course, no home is completely decorated without quilts!

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 020

Friendship quilt.

The blocks in this quilt were made by members of Launceston Patchworkers and Quilters in 1998 when I was a member of that group.  Each year all members are asked to make a block.  The blocks are arranged into groups of 9 and anyone who has not already received blocks goes into a draw to receive a set.  The recipient then has to make her quilt.  The hardest part for me was to choose a sashing fabric which worked with all the blocks.

blog photos Xmas @ knitsnquilts 011

Moda pattern and fabrics.

This large hand appliqued quilt hangs over the stair railing.  This is one of my favourite applique patterns.

Spring 2013 027

“Christmas Galaxy” quilt.

Thank you for visiting!

May your Christmas be a happy and safe one and just a bit “stitchy”!

%d bloggers like this: