After all the travel posts to France I thought I should write about what I've been up to here in Daisyland. 
Let me introduce a recent finish,  Calypso Swirl. 


I made this quilt when I returned from my travels in the US in March. Folding triangles and listening to podcasts was the perfect thing to do to get through my jet lag and worry about what was happening in the world. The simple act of folding, enjoying fabrics, feeling productive and the bright mix of colours helped, well, brighten the days. 
I was halfway through making the center when the hot pink floral fabric that has been in my stash for years, literally fell out, in fact it practically jumped of my cupboard! It couldn't have been a better match for the colours I was using. It was one of those sewing room miracles, definitely meant to be. From there the quilt came together like a breeze. Even the hand quilting didn't seem to take very long, I would quilt a little bit each day while the autumnal, afternoon sun filled the room. The quilt finished at 71in square.

The name Calypso Swirl came to me as I worked on the quilt. Its so great when the perfect name floats into your mind.

I entered Calypso Swirl in the Birmingham, UK, Festival of Quilts virtual quilt show and I was pleased as punch to find that it was one of the quilts shortlisted by the judges. Yay! Happy dance!


Here's my artist's statement about the quilt. Such a happy party quilt needed a fun description. 



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Moving onto a different colour mood and another part of the world. Silvia Merz Horn recently won a Judges Choice award at the Naples Quilt Show with her version of Dollop of Cream.

I was so impressed to see that Silvia had made all the different types of blocks from the Whizz Bang book, and used the quilting inspiration and buttons and trims and lots of fun things.


Here's a snippet of my Dollop of Cream quilt from the Whizz Bang book..

One of my recent finishes was made in a similar way, with an improv background and the circles floating across the quilt. I showed the background a few posts ago, and here is the finished quilt. 
I love the way the simple colours in high contrast show the variety of patterns that can be made with the different styles of blocks. 
I toyed with a few names for this quilt, in the end I settled on Shirt Tales, for the shirts that it is made from, the memories they hold, and for the stories that this quilt will have in its future.

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Another project from recent times were these flower blocks that I made for Quiltmania's Solidarity Project. They are asking quilters to sew blocks that will be made into quilts and given to the tireless workers and carers, risking their lives in hospital around the world. Each day Quiltmania post a different block on their blog with the instructions to make it. I made these blocks in April but they have had such a great response of block designs that my block was only shared last week. 

The brief was for 10.5in blocks to be in shades of pink to red.
( I made my blocks with 11in squares so that there is room for them to be trimmed correctly to size.) 


I decided on a blossom flower for my design for a few reasons,

The "Pink" theme colour made me think of the beautiful trees of blossom that I'd recently seen in Seattle and Mt Vernon, on my trip to the US. 

That's where I'd been as the news of the effects of Covid-19 started to get worse, and it really started to sink in how serious it all was. Walks with my friend LeeAnn of Nifty Quilts through streets of blossom were moments of calm in those days. So for me, blossoms are a reminder that while we need to be concerned and aware of the bigger picture, that it's also good to appreciate the simple things of our days and that we can find comfort in natural beauty.

Also, Blossoms are a symbol of spring, so I like to think that just as seasons change, so will this time pass.


My 'design is a simple one, for the ease of making several blocks, not just one. after-all there are lots and lots of health workers around the world that need to know their amazing efforts are very much appreciated. 

The simple design also gives room for variations,  Each of these "Gratitude Blossoms" has a little difference. Look closely and you'll see the centers are different sizes,

that the petals can be a mix of fabrics,

or even use 6 petals instead of 5. 

This is my favourite block, also inspired by those blossom filled walks with  LeeAnnNifty, for the time we came across a house decorated with flamingos.



If you'd like to sew along and make some blocks for the Quiltmania Solidarity Project you can find the daily blocks from designers around the world and the instructions and templates for my "Gratitude Blossom" block here on Quiltmania's blog. 


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This blog post is full of changing colour moods - we started with electric brights and then moved to dreamy creams, then on to navy blues, have just delved into shades of pink and reds and we now we're diving into a happy scrappy riot of colour! 

This is what I've been recently currently working on. 

In the recent months I've have been sorting out UFO's, making plans of what to finish, what to let go of, finishing lots of tops. This is the latest of my finishes. The zig zag blocks were a unfinished project from 10 years ago! I'd made zig zags in different sizes, and they weren't calling out to me to make more so I've pieced them with lots of scraps and will use this as a back for a quilt I've been working on. Just think, if this is the back, imagine the front!

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I'm pleased to announce that I'll be returning to teaching in the coming weeks. It will be lovely to see friendly faces again.

I've updated my Calendar Page so you can check in there and see what I have coming up. If you have any questions you can email me at rachaeldaisy@gmail.com 

In Sydney I'll be at Sew Can I with regular days,

Sew Can I  Ph 02 9623 4570
Come along and work on one of my patterns
Classes run from 9.30am - 2.30pm
4th Wednesdays of the month
Aug 27th, Sept 23rd, Oct 28th, Nov 25th

Sunday workshops
I'll be teaching a series of Sunday workshops focusing on different techniques.
We're still finalising the dates so if you are interested
call Karen, Sew Can I, (02) 9623 4570 for more information.

And then I'll be zooming around in the Daisymobile to towns far and wide.


SEPTEMBER
19-20th, WhateverWhereever, Howlong , (02) 6026 5489

OCTOBER
4-9th Quilt Encounter, Adelaide, Booked out.
10/11th Victor Harbour, Adelaide, Whizz Bang Workshop. email me for details

NOVEMBER
7/8/9/10th Nesting Needles, Coramba, Ph 0400 055 989
14th/15th, Stitch Between the Bridges, Tamworth, (02) 6765 4138

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I haven't been out and about much lately so I haven't any random photos to share so I'll sign off with this this pretty photo from a few years ago, and wish you all bright, beautiful, colourful days.