Thursday, 16 April 2015

Finally Finished

I was in two minds whether to blog about these before or after the show, but the reason things have been quiet here is that I’ve been working on couple of entries for the British Quilt and Stitch Village, the postal deadline for which was this week. After a couple of weekends of continual sewing, I finally finished them late on Sunday night and got them in the post on Monday morning. Unfortunately these photos will have to do until after the show as I had to spend most of Sunday burying ~500 ends (I'm not sure I want to know exactly how many!) and I only had time to grab a few photos on Monday morning before having to leave for work and the post office.

The pouch (for the three dimensional category) is made of silk dupion EPP diamonds and is hand quilted with silk thread. It is filled to overflowing with Suffolk puffs and is supposed to represent treasure at the end of the rainbow. The flag is for the special theme category (British Royalty) and is made of ~1300 half-inch EPP hexies. It is quilted in red, white and blue with 40 wt Aurifil in the needle and 50 wt Aurifil in the bobbin. The VR and ER signify the current and future longest serving British monarchs and my thinking was that the mix of traditional Liberty prints and modern metallics, along with traditional EPP and modern machine quilting would reflect how British royalty have to balance the traditional with the modern.

The flag took much longer to complete than anticipated, particularly burying all the ends, and by Sunday evening I just wanted the thing finished which probably means the latter stages could have been done a lot better. Even just looking at the photos now, I can spot several hexies where the colour contrast could be improved and I'm sure my binding technique is not up to quilt show standards.

These projects have taken up all of my sewing time for the past few months and now they are finished, I’m at a bit of a loss as to what to do next. I think it could be time to start my husband’s quilt and which involves no hexies or hand sewing at all.

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Silent Sewing

It’s been a bit quiet here but there’s been lots of sewing going on which I'll share after the show. Deadline is fast approaching and there are still plenty of hexies to sew and lots of Suffolk puffs to string together. Why on earth did I decide to enter not one but two hand pieced items for a quilt show?

As the end is in sight for these projects, I’ve started thinking about my next hand sewing project and this book arrived last week from Sew & Quilt. I got the first book last year, but I have yet to make anything from it. Maybe I’ll skip book one and go straight to book two as already several quilts have already caught my eye.

Anyway this temptation has to be put away for another two weeks and I need to get back to sewing 300 hexies (eek!).

Friday, 27 February 2015

Fabric fast fail

I’m supposed to be on a fabric fast again, but I just don’t seem to be in the right frame of mind for it this year.

First of all there was this little pile of fabric from Abakhan’s (2m of Timeless Treasures Rain, 2m of wide (240cm) animal print sheeting for a quilt back and 3m of a charcoal blender).

Then there was this bag of scraps from Nadine at Leeds MQG.

Now, Simply Solids have a free UK postage weekend (valid until midnight Monday, no code required) and half a metre of Steeping Awakening was ordered this morning.

I do hope that I can get back to just saying no as I am rapidly running out of storage space.

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Lots of looking and lots of Liberty

Last week I spent a couple of days in London and although I did absolutely no sewing on train there or back, there was lots of sewing-related sight-seeing and shopping done.

First up was a trip the Wedding Dress exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum. The exhibition has dresses from 1775 to the current day but alas no photographs were allowed. The dresses were stunning and you could get close enough to see the details. It would have been interesting if the size of each gown was given as well as detail of the fabric and trim composition as some of the waists looked tiny! The exhibition runs until March 15th and there is a two-for-one offer if you travel by train.

Shopping was next on the list – first to Shaukat Fabrics for some Liberty Lawns. I’ve been to this shop before and so knew to expect a courteous rather than a friendly welcome. The staff are keen to offer prompt service which can curtail browsing time and the choice of fabrics is rather overwhelming so I don't think they realise that plenty of thinking time can be needed. I came away with a few half metre cuts from the roll and several of their remnants.

I think I saved the best to last as the final part of my trip was to the Liberty's itself. This was my first visit to the shop and I loved the quirkiness of it (though the words "How much ?!" were uttered on several occassions). Needless to say I spent most of my time in the fabric department and was delighted to find a sewing set in Mauverina, one of my favourite prints.

A couple more half metres of lawn were added to my fabric haul and the final purchase was a colourful Ianthe print notebook from the stationery department.

 Then all too soon it was time to head home with lots of memories and a few purple bags.

Monday, 12 January 2015

Stormy Seas

Last Saturday was spent at Leeds MQG (who have shiny new website) where there was plenty of chatter, laughter and sewing. I took along my first project for 2015 – the Nautical Quilt for a great nephew who is due to appear this month.

My first thought was for a 5 x 5 block layout and after trying different arrangements had decided on a diagonal rainbow on a directional bluey-green background fabric which could represent the sea.

In the end I had more rainbow colours that anticipated and decided to go for a 5 x 6 layout with a total of 15 boats blocks.

I was pleased with my progress on Saturday – I managed to get all the sails completed for the boats. However, after looking at the picture I posted on Instagram, I realised that a couple of blocks had very choppy sea conditions!