Saturday, 26 March 2011

My stash busting is so busted!

It's never a good idea to visit a quilt show the day after payday, but I did it today! My local show is an hour's drive away, and Mr Kwilter volunteered to be driver and bag carrier, so not wanting to refuse an offer like this, I ordered a roll of wadding from Lady Sew and Sew...expensive, but no postage to pay, and the roll will last me a good year to 18 months. I'd planned to browse the exhibits, pick up my wadding and a new cutting board, then head home...How wrong I was!!

First some eye candy:

Just a few of my favourites in the show. The standard's definitely getting higher each time I visit. South West Quilters had their recruitments stand, They'd put an appeal out for banners to decorate the outside of their drapes, and our new group decided we needed to get our name out there, so made a banner:

I love it!! Jan B pieced the background, I appliqued the lighthouse and words, and Helen quilted it. Our name and contact details are on the back, so if people attend the show and would like to join us, the info's all right there. We'll get it back after the AGM in mid April, but the Guild would like to have them each year for their stand. I think the general group agreement is that we'll be making another one to hang at our own meetings, coffee mornings and shows.

Naturally, I did a fair bit of stash enhancement...numbers to follow in the side bar, but first pictures.

Bundle of 8 neutral FQs (stash replenishment) bundle of 8 dark FQs (because they were 2 bundles for £20). Metre of golf print fabric (stash enhancement, but possibly for a bag for a work colleague who's a golfer and going through a rough time right now) 4 sets of Moda charm squares. No excuse at all for these...not even the "Use Your Charms" meeting coming up at Sound Stitchers next month. But, they were only £5 each...I saw other ranges priced at £9.50 today, so total bargain. I've got plans for these involving the yo-yo maker I bought last month, and a bag pattern. Mini bolt of blue batik, backing for Hannah's Guide quilt

This pic shows a metre of calico for labels and hanging sleeves, a bobbin of fine thread to use in my bottom bobbin, 3 new rotary blades, essential replacement, a skein of sashiko thread to go with some blue batik to make a slouch bag with. (not the blue batik above, some I bought in Bovey Tracy). Diane Gaudinski machine quilting guide, I bought this for my former quilt group, and loved it so much, I wanted my own copy. The cutting board everything's lined up on is new as well, my old one was getting just too warn and warped.

Finally, the roll of wadding, not very glamorous, but certainly essential equipment.

Numbers going on the sidebar now

Monday, 21 March 2011

Another past the finish line.

Way back last summer, my boss announced she was going to be a grandma. Straight away, I pieced a cute baby quilt top for her daughter. I used leftover squares from a previous quilt, log cabin-ed round them with some stash cream, sashed them all with some lovely bright green, then came to a screaming halt. I think it was the long deadline that meant it kept getting pushed to the back of my to do queue. Either that or pure idleness!

I decided I wanted to try something different for the final border, and finally picked that scallops could be the finish I was looking for. I'd not done a scalloped oouter border since a quilt I gave to my parents in law several years ago, where the final border formed the scallops without any re-drawing or maths. This one was going to be different. I only had a small amount of matching cream left, so knew I wouldn't be able to make any mistakes.

A couple of weeks ago, I was looking on Amazon for a family history book, and treated myself to a book called "The Quilter's Edge" by Darlene Zimmerman, which explains how to draw scallops with the minimum of fuss, so this weekend, off I set with a pencil, pieces of paper and the baby quilt.

You know what? I'm really pleased with the final favourite part is the way I've got the binding to sweep right next to the bright green at the corners.

Thursday, 17 March 2011

What a difference a year makes.

Thank you to Mr C and Mr M, surgeons; Dr G, nuclear physician; and Nurse R, nurse specialist in thyroid cancer.

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

Breaking my workshop duck

This weekend, it was the regional day of the Quilters' Guild UK. Three of us from Sound Stitchers were able to get to both days events. Saturday morning saw us eagerly listening to a talk by Linda Chilton a spectacularly talented embroiderer, and after lunch was Anja Townrow talking about her quilting journey. I don't know how the organisers had managed to book two such excellent speakers, but I'm really pleased that they did!

Linda showed us some of her pictures, and passed around samples of painted felt, her children's Christening gown, and sample pieces of her work. She told us how she layers up chiffon to produce a misty effect, and kept us entertained with her exploits at craft fairs around the country. After her talk, we had the chance to watch her work on a piece, so we could see close up how she works. To see some examples of her work, do click the link to her website, it's well worth a visit....make yourself a cuppa first as there's plenty to see on there.

Lunchtime gave the chance to shop with Step by Step and Villavin Crafts...and I shopped! I didn't get a chance to get a photo of my first purchase, it was a roll of 9 neutral strips 5 inches wide. I needed them for a commission quilt, so they're all chopped ready for sewing later today. My other buys were 4 half metre peices of Japanese fabrics, and a gadget for making yo-yos...never even thought about buying one before, but it was half price, so why not. My friend Sandra bought the smaller size, so we can mix and match. I also picked up a few FQs of kingfisher coloured fabrics, ready for the workshop on Sunday.

Anja spoke in the afternoon on her quilting journey "From Tulips to Triangles", and kept us all entertained and amazed in turn. She's an enthusiastic speaker, and very self deprecating. Not what you might have expected from such a known "name", there were no airs and she was more than willing to point out mistakes and fudging in her award winning quilts. I'm so glad it's not just us mere mortals who do that!

The three of us were back again on Sunday for Anja's workshop "Pondlife". We had a choice of pattern, and she guided us through foundation piecing, bonding the finished piece to a background and applique. Hugely enjoyable, and though I've done foundation piecing before, I still picked up quite a few tips. We were also encouraged to sample some of Anja's thread collection on a sample applique piece to get a feel for her methods.

Here's my kingfisher,all ready to be appliqued down, trimmed to size and have his borders attached. I'm so pleased with how it turned out. I even got all the tree pieces from one piece of fabric left over from the fist bundle of bits that I bought when I first started quilting! The majority of the orange is my own hand dyed fabric, with just the narrow strip on his under belly borrowed from Sandra.