Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Cockle doodle doo....

'The Chook' is finished. It's straight line quilted in a grid pattern that emerged as I was quilting it. I'd initially planned to just quilt in one direction but changed my mind as I went. I think having the two directions supports the log cabin and its multi-directional effect.

The binding is scrappy. It mostly uses the fabrics I've used in the log cabins but I've also used another which I'd initially rejected for the quilt. I purchased this fabric from the quilt shop in St Helens in Tasmania. It was in their discount pile and I didn't ever take notice of what it was. I loved the little plum blossoms....sort of Japanese. I'd only purchased 30cm so it wasn't quite enough to do all the binding and as I worked with it I grew more fond of it and didn't have the heart to use it all up.

'The Chook' measures approx 120cm square (47") and it goes into the cupboard for a planned gift at the end of the year.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

The chook...

This was my Friday night project. It became my Friday night toss and turn, "I can't sleep, what if I did this, I could get up now it's only 3am" project and now it's Saturday night, so it's my "look at my latest quilt top".
The funny thing is that I started sewing these log cabins with a bunch of fabrics that I bought last April when we were in QLD (Mt Tamborine - Gold Coast). I bought 2 x fat quarters and 1 x set of 4 fat 1/8ths. They were supposed to be Civil War repros and they looked lovely all together. When I got home, I had post buyer dissonance (this is marketing speak for consumer behaviour buyer's remorse which is what I should be studying right now but am not because I'm worshipping fabric....where am I....?). I have looked at these fabrics in the cupboard so many times since then, pulled them out and then shoved them back in because they didn't go with anything. Then I got serious. I knew what I wanted to make and I had a recipient in mind. I just had to make it work.
Low and behold. I'd been stashing and hadn't realised it! There was an Anna Maria Horner fat quarter that I bought in Tasmania that co-ordinated perfectly and 2 x brown flat fats from Spotlight. (Quilters: if you're in Australia and have a Spotlight close by, check out the honeycomb and small print fat quarters. Seriously, they're not bad!)
I've used 8 different prints in the log cabins and surrounded them with white. Normally I wouldn't have used white against all these creams and browns but I was also on a mission to use what I had in the cupboard. I must admit that the white does make the other colours pop but I'm not sure of the practicality.
All the fat 1/8th's are gone :-( and I have about a fat 1/8th of the fat quarters left. So all in all, a very low use of fabrics used in the log cabins.
I've christened this quilt top 'The Chook'. The colours remind me of hens....oranges, golds, browns and muddy reds. I probably should have taken it over to Clare's for a photo shoot with her chooks but I think they're demanding huge appearance fees these days as Clare likes to incorporate them in her quilt photos! ....Take a number!
So in the absence of talented chooks, thank you to my patient holding up model...who funnily enough will probably demand a lot more than the chooks! :-)

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

You gotta jump over it, you gotta jump under it....

I've reached a point in my latest project where I can't wait to show you what I've been doing these past few days (weeks actually) much so, I'm revealing it in its basted state.
This is my circle quilt inspired (again) by Amanda Jean who directed readers of her blog to this wonderful, simple to follow tutorial.
I haven't shown the back but believe it or not, I started this quilt with the backing fabric. It's an Ikea sheeting fabric available now in 3m x 120cm lengths for around $14.95*, featuring hearts on white in blue, green, yellow, red, pink and orange. (*I'm finding that depending on which State you live in, depends on how much Ikea charge...but that's another blog story.) Except for the pink I was able to select 12 different Denyse Schmidt's Katie Jump Rope fabrics in co-ordinating colours. I've been saving my collection of these fabrics and it took a lot to seriously cut into them but now I'm just jumping over the moon with how gorgeous these fabrics look together in one quilt. I can't wait to quilt it and show it in its finished form.
Edited to say: Now I know why circle quilts are so addictive!

Monday, October 19, 2009

I could have tossed a coin....

But I went for Mr Random Integer Generator instead and charged him with the responsibility of choosing either number one or two.
If I knew how to paste a screen grab you would have seen he came up with number 1. (If anyone wants to send me the instructions on how to paste a screen grab, I'd love to know!)
The mini AMNYSIA quilt is going to live with Kay.
Thanks to both Kay and Clare for passing on their best wishes on my blogging and quilting milestones. Happy quilting!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

There goes the neighbourhood!

The Girl Guide Fundraiser Quilt is finished!

Miss Polly is sad to see this quilt go....she was quite enjoying sitting on the current stack! And I'm sad to see it go was a much loved/desired design right from the start. You know what that means.....I'll just have to make another one!
The binding was fun but tricky, little blotches of colour in between strips of white. (For the blotches of colour, I used all those little bits of left over binding that I file in a zip lock bag.) I totally miscalculated the dimensions for where the colour would land but hey....I'm sure the recipient won't be as critical as me. It was also unusual to join the binding pieces on a straight seam rather than angled.
The backing fabric is a tiny spot - orange, green, yellow, blue on white....perfect for the majority of white and colours used in the front.
The stippling was tricky. As I've said in previous posts, I think I've lost my strippling mojo....but I think that was a thread issue.
The quilt measures around 60" square.

Sunday, October 11, 2009


What? That's not how you spell amnesia. I know. And recently I could have been accused of having it. It looks like I've completely forgotten that I even have a blog given recent absences but that can be easily explained away with an assignment to hand up and preparation for a mid term test. I'm afraid I'm a terrible procrastinator and choose fabric over text books any (every) day! So needless to say, I was way behind in the academic department! (It's the same excuse I have when it comes to housework I must admit!!)
But no. The real issue surroundging forgetfulness is my lack of observance over two little milestones.
1. My 50th blog posting (this is 53!) and 2. my year of quilting. (insert clapping and trumpet sounds here)
It's been a year since the Sew & Sews girls decided to make a quilt to celebrate our mentor Carly's new little baby Olive. The Sew & Sews originally met at a Thursday evening art class at Nest Studio and we continued to meet after Carly went on maternity leave. We chose the Goodnight Sweet Prints design from Material Obsession 1, each of us creating a panel surrounded by 4" squares. It was a lot of fun working collaboratively even though I think back now to how we blindly plundered through the process with only a couple of books as references. We've all come a long way in our quilt making and fabric obsessions since then. Even CZ who on our first S&S's fabric buying trip to Melbourne declared she wasn't a quilter has started a quilt!
A year ago I'd never even heard of Amy Butler, Denyse Schmidt or Anna Maria Horner. Now their names are part of everyday vernacular in our household! I now have two sewing machines and a renovated antique wardrobe is standing in pride of place with fabric jewels to worship as you pass. And of course, a blog.
To celebrate these little milestones I've made a mini quilt featuring these 3 wonderful designers. It measures 40cm x 40cm (approx 16" x 16"). It's the AM-NYS-IA mini quilt (AMy deNYSe anna marIA) and each of the designers are featured. Where's Anna Maria? She's on the back in the selvedges! Her colours just weren't working on the front! Sorry AMH!
There are two selvedge panels on the back. And the quilt is straight line quilted which was a first for me. I'm really thrilled with how it worked out.
So let's share the moment. The AM-NYS-IA mini quilt could be yours. Just leave me a comment and say hi. I'd love to hear from you. I'll announce where this 'Little Sew & Sew' is going to live next week. Happy blogging, studying and sewing!