Friday, 19 June 2009

Photos and more sewing

At last here's the pic of the silk flower hanging for my mother in law! The dark blue border is some hand dye I bought in Birmingham last August and couldn't bear to use up, but I like the contrast between the two blues in the hanging.

I couldn't work out how to quilt it as I didn't want anything over the main vase, so I've just gone in the ditch around the border, and the gentle meanders around the outer border. There's hand applied beads and sequins on the flowers as well I think you can just about see them in this picture.

The other thing I've been working on recently is from this book:

I saw a link on someone's FaceBook page to a customer quilt that he was working on and absolutely loved the kaleidoscope effect on the quilt. I looked at it for ages and could kind of work out how to do it, but not totally. I'd got as far as layering 6 identical cuts of fabric, then slicing them into triangles, each pile of which would be identical, but couldn't see how I'd get them sewn together after that. Anyway,I took a gamble and bought some fabric at the same time as the book and crossed my fingers that it would be suitable, and enough!!

These are the semi-finished hexagons: I'm not going to say any more about piecing them as I think the author deserves more of us buying her books.

I could do with setting myself up with a design wall so I can place the hexagons and live with the arrangement for a while before finalising it, so until I get that sorted, I'm holding fire with the quilt. I love the variety of tones in the hexes, it's hard to believe they all came from the same piece of fabric!!

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Another finish

This week's finish is the mini wall hanging for my mother in law. Debbie showed us the technique at Plym a couple of months ago and although I couldn't see myself using it for a piece for myself, I wanted to try it out. After all what's the point of going to a group meeting if you don't join in with what's being demo-ed? So I dutifully bought my bunch of silk flowers, ripped all the plastic off and started to place them on the background fabrics.

Both of them are some hand dyes that I did to try out the dye box I bought in Birmingham last summer, but didn't really have anything planned to make with the samples once I'd finished them. I like the way the pink of the vase is picked up by a swirl in the blue background. There's also hints of pink in the edges of some of the lilac flowers, so all in all the colours seem to have worked quite well.

I free hand cut the vase, then started placing flowers on to resemble a free style bouquet. Once I was happy with the flowers, I FMQ-ed them down using invisible thread. After I'd put the border on, it sat there in my box for a month as I'd run out of ideas!!

Eventually I decided not to do any more quilting on the main body of the wall hanging, but to go with some gentle curves around the outside border. Simples! I found some beads in my button box that looked like they came with a sparkly top, so used them in the centres of the flowers to add a hint of sparkle.

Just need to pack it in tissue paper ready to send over with the children when they go to stay with her in August. Less than 2 months to go now!!

PS camera won't let me load photos on the laptop, or if it will I can't work out how to do it, so photos later when I can get them sorted out. It's worth the wait honest!

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Short but sweet

Just a quickie before dinner time, here's my BQL monthly challenge for June. Can't believe I've finished it by the 2nd. I'm 4th in the photo gallery for the group too. Nice easy one this time, for the quilting, I used my walking foot and just did squiggly lines in a Madeira Lana thread I got in a goody bag at the FoQ last year.

The thread broke a few times, mainly when the machine was tying off at the start of lines, but the texture is lovely. I used a slightly longer stitch length and took it nice and slowly. I don't think I'd use this on a big machine project, but it would be fab for hand embroidery and it worked well in this small piece.

Quilt group tonight with a sale table from Janet so hoping to buy some green and some red from her. When I was in Exeter, I bought some Japanese charm pieces, and finally decided last night what I wasnted to make with them. Obviously a charm quilt, but I didn't want to go for just sewing them in rows. I found an old quilt I'd designed on EQ6 with snowballs and think it'll work well with these squares and the green/red borders.

Monday, 1 June 2009

Thyroid update and a bit whiny

Sorry, this is going to be a totally self indulgent whine. I'm waiting for a week of injections, blood tests and scans to determine if the radio iodine treatment I had in January has worked. It's coming up next week, and frankly I'm terrified of what they might find. Work has been pretty quiet so every time I have nothing to do my mind has been drifting to what's coming up. I ended up making loads of stupid mistakes and forgettng to double check what I have done, so I've had my manager on my back, yelling across the office at me and on one occasion across the main corridor. I was on my mobile to the hospital trying to sort appointment dates and put it down the second a customer came in the shop.

I'm struggling to make simple decisions (what to make for tea, what colours to use in a quilt, what to wear for a run) and panicking about stupid things. Because I've been so scared about what they might find and that I might have to go through radio again, it's been coming out as anger, and I've been veering between bursting into tears and snapping people's heads off. I eventually went to see my GP who has signed me off with stress for a couple of weeks which has given me a breathing space, and I'm going to see him again this afternoon to see if he'll extend it till after next week's tests. I'm also going to ask about anti depressants. Hubby phoned the nuclear medicine to check how long I'd be waiting for the results, and it seems that I should get the in the middle of the week after.

Some photos to make up for the whine, I've been following the Carol Doak scenic block of the month, here's some of the blocks so far.