Friday, January 31, 2014

Happy mail & Sewing updates.

Don't you just love getting surprise mail! 
I arrived home to find this mysterious parcel waiting for me on my doorstep. 

Such a fun card!

My heart did such a happy dance when I opened it and found a wonderful little Downton Abbey quilt from my friend Barb, of Fun with Barb

I'd admired this quilt on Barb's blog when she showed it a few weeks ago. I really love the swirly movement of the paisley shapes. 
Note how the sevedge pieces say 'Village', how perfect when Downton Abbey would indeed over look the nearby villiage, 

Gorgeous toile on the back! 

They look like scenes from the show. 

The parcel was padded with this cute fabric. 
Opal Owl by Tina Givens. 
Thank you Barb!! I love my wonderful surprise, it made my day! 
Ps Barb calls it a little table mat, but I'm going to hang in on the wall with my other little quilts.  

Now to prove I've been sewing, here's my Octopus's Garden quilt sandwich being basted. It has approximately one thousand safety pins in it, I'm a chronic overpinner, I don't want those layers moving!
My plan is to machine quilt it over the weekend, then I'll add hand quilting during the week, binding next weekend and it'll be done. Sounds good in theory, doesn't it. I'm trying to be more organised and work to deadlines. Wish me luck... 

Here's a snippet of a little hand sewing project I've been slowly working on.

another little bit,  

and one more peek

Hee Hee, I bet you're curious now :)

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Post-it Notes

Recently I found myself with 10 minutes to spare and a group of Post-it notes at my fingertips. 

Those neon colours were just asking to be played with. 

Post-it note Gingham

Irish chain in pink and orange?

Sunny yellow center.

i ! i ! i ! i 

Paper clip boogie! 

Woven Log Cabin

Hello little Star.

When my ten minutes were over I wrapped up the evidence and got back to work.  :)

Saturday, January 18, 2014

I'm joining in the Finish Along!

Okay Okay, I'm joining in !!
Peer pressure, a touch of madness and the fact that I'm up to my ears in UFO's are good enough reasons to join in the 2014 Finish Along, hosted by the one and only Katy of The Littlest Thistle. Oh and there's lots of great prizes to win. Thanks to the wonderful Sponsors.

I'm going to nominate the following projects.

1) First up on my finish list is my Swoon Houses. This is the block I made when I did a tutorial of sorts. The plan is to quilt the block so it can be used as a little wall hanging quilt. Then I'll have a giveaway so it can find a home with one of my wonderful followers.

2) Octopus's Garden. It would great to get this quilt finished so I can show it at The Springwood Quilt Show. The quilt top is not too big so I'll have a go at machine quilting it. I figure it doesn't need fancy stitches because the fabrics and quilt pattern tell enough of a story.

3) Conversation - This will get a good dose of lovely chunky hand quilting.

I'm hoping those 3 should be managable by the beginning of April. I don't want to scare myself with a big list, especially as I have some busy times coming up in the next month. Plus it's always nice to have a bit of room to work on other things as the mood strikes.
Well that's it, I've set my goals, I'd better get sewing!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Holiday Snaphot From my Quilt

Remember a little while ago my Double Denim Wedding Ring quilt was one of the winners of the NYCMod Quilters Wedding Ring Challenge? Well, Modern Patchwork magazine is doing an article on the challenge so I was asked to send my quilt to the US to be photographed.

The quilt had a great welcome and I couldn't resist asking for a photo.  My wish was granted and here are the wonderful women who are looking after my quilt while it's on holiday.  

from left to right, Vivika Hansen DeNegre (editor and editorial director of the quilt group), Kristine Lundblad (assistant editor), and Rosemarie DeBoer (managing editor).
 It's always great to be able to put faces to names! (photo courtesy of Interweave)

And now it's just a matter of waiting patiently for Modern Patchwork Spring 2014, which will be on sale in mid-April, so we can read the article and see Double Denim Wedding Ring in a magazine. Too exciting!! 

In the meantime you can pop over to the website -, for more information about their magazines.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

The Unveiling...

...of my latest quilt top.
Conversation, 60 x 60 inches, is the result of playing with Jess Wheelahan's Text/Type fabrics
I chose to make blocks of simple geomentic shapes to allow room for the kinetic energy of the fabrics. 

Just for fun I played around with different photo effects. 

Lighter and Brighter
Black and White - Dramatic!

Neutralising the neutrals.

Spot lit in the dark

Rusty Sepia tones of yesteryear

Upside down!

Here's a close up of the big triangle fabric. I'm a "put a bird on it" kinda gal so here's the bird of this quilt.

and I didn't want him to be lonely so I added a friend. 
My plan for quilting includes lots of big stitches adding more geometric shapes - circles in the squares, squares in the triangles and triangles in the circles.  I've got some tapestry yarns that I'm hoping will work as I'd like the stitches to be really bold and chunky. We'll see, I find these things have a way of evolving. 

Just a reminder - You can get Jess's fabulous screen printed Text/Type fabrics from Material Obsession. The red bird fabric came from there too but I'm not sure what it's called, doh!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Sewing On The Edge

Or to be more precise sewing with the edge...

One of the perks with Jess Wheelahan's Text/Type fabrics is the screen printing process leaves an edge of unprinted area. Of course my first thoughts were to cut it off, but then an idea came to me. What about incorporating them in my quilt. After all, those spacious edges are pieces of handy coordinated solids. Woohoo bonus!!

So with that knowledge, I got off the ledge and started to edge 
and here's what I came up with.

A framed Hourglass block

Who said you shouldn't do things by halves. 

Just a small piece adds a place for the eyes to rest

Easiest pinwheel ever, I just cut a square that was half printed and half solid edge then cut it in half, flipped one half and then sewed it back together. 

The change in the background makes the circle float!!

 It's a triangle made with a wedge of edge! And isn't it great to see that circle take the solid fabric from the outskirts to center stage

I'm waiting for better light to take a photo of the quilt top I've made with these blocks but I can show what I've put together for the backing. You know I always enjoy delving into the depths of my cupboard to pull together fun and crazy combinations of odd fabrics for my backings.

I mean really, Where else could I use my treasured fabric of cowboy ties. 

I'll get some good photos of my finished top and share it in the next post, I promise.  :)

Sunday, January 5, 2014

New Fabric to start the New Year

A very Happy New Year to everyone!
 I'm not very good at keeping resolutions so I wont even try :)
Instead I thought I'd start the new year by showing off my new favourite fabrics. 
text/type are screen printed fabrics designed by Sydney's own Jess Wheelahan, who also happens to be an amazing quilter. 

Jess has come up with 2 designs using vintage stamps that she collected over time, one by one. 

Here we have the alphabet dancing a merry jig all over the fabric.

and the other fabric has numbers floating around in a cloud of bubbles 

I think the earthy background colours Jess has chosen reflect the colours of our Australian bush, 

so I took them to the bottom of my garden for photos. 

I really love the screen printed look of these fabrics. It's as though they're art works in their own right. Although I could easily just hang them on the wall to enjoy as they are, I have bravely cut into them and sewn up a few blocks. I'll save photos of those for the next post...

In the meantime if you're tempted to add some of these fabrics to your stash you can get them from Material Obsession. 


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