Monday, 16 September 2013

Circle Game - the eggy face post

Well, I've got another block done.  Not without a lot of adult words, tears and an email to Amitie.

I'd tried machine piecing this block and failed.  I then hand pieced it and failed. By this stage, my rational and wise mine told me to give up.  The irrational stubborn mind told me to ask for help.  So I did.

Then I EPP'd the block and it went together perfectly. Because I realised that the two end pieces of each arc joined together without the green centre in between.  I'd been trying to put it together completely wrong.

I'd emailed Amitie panicking and thinking it was something wrong with the pattern when it was me being a complete numpty. AGAIN! I should have read the instructions first......

Now I'm off to email and apology to Lucy and explain I was a complete idiot.

That said this afternoons adventure is to rectify this piece of fabric art.  It is so distorted that I'm resorting to EPPing this and the remainder of the blocks in a vain attempt to have some reasonably flat blocks to assemble soon.

This is sort of the cripple blocks I am able to produce far too often.

Onwards and upwards.

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Circle Game progress

I've managed not to blog for a little while (OK almost 6 months) as things have been rather hectic here.  I now have two friends living with me, a baby has been born and I've seen two long-term relationships go up in smoke and been supporting a lot of people and dogs.

I've made a lot of things this summer, done a lot of mending and even learned a couple of new sewing skills. All of which are coming in handy on Circle Game.

My lovely friend Mel lives in Melbourne, home of Amitie Textiles. She went right the away across town with another mutual friend Julie to but my Xmas present last December. Cue hysterical Autocorrect moment when an Iphone turned Sandringham Line on the Metro into slandering jam!

Since then I've been slowly working my way through the blocks. All of the blocks are meant to be hand pieced but I'm a proper chicken so a lot of the earlier blocks have been paper pieced.  Well, it's hand pieced, just not the recommended way. Some have been machine pieced because I like bending the rules. Also, having spoken to Lynne Goldsworthy (one of the UK Amitie BOM veterans), she also had the same ideas about piecing so I'm OK with that.

I've plenty of scraps courtesy of Lynne and Brioni so I'm having a lot of fun with colour combos I'd normally never try with my own fabrics. I've a lot more subtle fabrics than my usual eyeball screamingly bright colours so this should be a lot more cohesive overall and not offend so many people at quilt group.  I'm also finding I'm having to think a lot more about contrast , especially when it comes to the block surrounds and borders.  I've made decisions about the surrounds but the borders are still a massive headache.

The original looks to have charcoal Sketch as the borders.  I'm not to keen on a dark border and I think it could be a bit heavy.  Also the corner pieces are navy polkadots and that is about as dark as I want to go.

So the choices get a bit more exciting.  I want a fairly neutral colour, not bright to accentuate the semi circles on the border.  It also can't be a solid colour as it would flatten everything around it. That reduces the selection more.

Then it has to have texture as a ditsy print or teeny polkadots woud look plain wrong.

Now can you see why I have a headache and why the selection is taking so long?

I could go for a subtle batik like the Hoffman 1895 Watercolours and completely offend some of my batik hating friends but the idea is good.  Colour wise mid to dark toned, possibly grey or a nice brown.  Yes I said brown.  I hate brown fabric but it would work here and balance out the brightness of the blocks.

Current favourite is Moda Grunge Basics as they would look good in any project and love the effect they give. I'm not even looking at grey or brown here but pear, decadent and avalanche.  If I could find any of the Dauphine Grunge in the UK, I may settle for that but it may be too dark overall.

 Also I like the Riley Blake Small Gingham in Grey.

Told you it was headache time!

As usual, when getting the camera out, Phoebe decided to get in one the action and promptly lay on the pieces when they were laid out on the floor!

One bribe later, she got off

I'm disgustingly organised for a change.  The  border strips are cut as are the outer border semi circles and the corners and insets that surround each circle.  All neatly bagged and set aside for a rainy day when I can get to grips with them.

I'm even planning for the next big quilt adventure. In the current issue of Quiltmania is a pattern I've lusted over since Spring Market. It's another Jen Kingwell design but this time it's Midnight at the Oasis. I've read the instructions and had the thought that it's not 'that' difficult.  Yep, I'm probably over reaching but I'm up for a challenge!

Sunday, 24 March 2013

10 things I desperately need

This is simply my list of things I need to buy in the very near future to be able to quilt properly. It is simply a memory aid for me

1/4" foot,  Completely fed up with guessing seam and never getting them accurate. It's just a standard low shank foot, nothing special

Free Motion Quilting foot. I really want to get away from only straight line quilting and add some detail and texture

Bobbins.  21x7mm bobbins, plastic or metal.  I work with a single bobbin as it is so more would be pretty wonderful

2m Klona white cotton  Ran out part of the way through my Summersville Spring project and I need enough to do Ryan's quilt.

Thread. An ongoing problem.  I want to move to using decent thread but at present can't afford to.  Even Coats Moon for piecing is better than nothing but using decent stuff for the final quilting would be nice.

Quilters Muslin  I need to buy a lot of this for upcoming scrappy projects

Wadding I love natural fibre wadding but this beggar can't be a chooser. The polyester waddings don't shrink and remain colour fast. They are pretty much idiot proof too.

Backing fabric Pretty much the final expense on any quilt and Ikea has some excellent budget fabrics for silly prices. I also have the option of Fabricland which also has some good fabrics at really silly prices.

Laminate and fabric 1/2 yard of this and 1/2 yard of this plus hardware to finish my Weekend bag from Lisa Lam's Bag Making Bible.  This has all been cut out for months but now I can proceed further without additional fabric

Quilt Labels Now I want to do this properly - I never sign my stitching which is probably a huge mistake as my memory is so dreadful that I rely on blog posts to determine when I started/finished projects. My quilts deserve more.  I need labels. End of story. Best place to get them from is Spoonflower as a bespoke print job.

My aide-memoir is complete.


Monday, 18 February 2013

Lucky fabric hoarder

Sorry everyone.  I have been finding writing any sort of words hard for months now, mainly because I lead a chaotic life and have ad quite bad depression.  Enough of that - that's not why you are here.

I love my fabric and have been quite incredibly lucky recently.  I've won two layer cakes: California Girl by Fig Tree Quilts from Simply Solids and Summersville Spring by Lucie Summers, and been gifted a third Sunkissed but Sweetwater from Amanda as part of her PIF plan.

This is the Sunkissed made up to GoGoKim's pattern Happy Weekender on Moda Bake Shop

I have another pile of fabric left from this quilt and I'm working towards finding a pattern or design to show the remaining fabric off and I'm loving choosing solids to match.

California Girl was made up using the Little Apples Quilt pattern from the main Moda website The finished top is on Flickr here .  I can't get the image to load so have to link it.  The original image is on my other laptop and I can't face the faffing about to find it!

The Summersville Spring Layer Cake is a work in progress but it I need to feed it more white before I can show the finished article.

I also won a bundle of fabric earlier in the year from Pink Castle Fabrics.  It is Hope Chest by Josephine Kimberling for Blend Fabrics. I'm liking the handle of Blend Fabric very much.  Soft. even and very easy to sew with.  I mixed in the fabrics with the remainder of the Swanky jelly roll I've had for ages and turned it into a prairie braid quilt top.  The colours go together well; better than I hoped in fact.  I need to trim the the top and finish this one quickly now as I have the perfect person to gift it to!

What else....... I was running very low on scraps and trying to avoid cutting my limited stash.  Then two of my Fairy Quiltmothers came to my rescue.  January saw the arrival of two huge boxes of scraps from Lynne and Brioni.  That was such fun to sort though and begin to work with.  Scrap Vomit 3 is well underway now with enough strips of squares ready to build a quilt 64" square.  When I get bored, I just come and sew squares together.

That's about it from here.  I have a pile of ideas for this super scrappy year. Can't wait to have some fun.