Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Piecing a castle!

Our littlest one turns five in November. She is still very much the princess fairy little girl and into all things pretty and sparkly! This year I planned to make each child a cushion as a gift. The boy received a Mario one and the eldest a blue themed pattern from Elizabeth Hartman's book Modern Patchwork.


So I set to thinking of a design for the littlest one. I concluded that the only option really was a fairy castle! So I googled for a picture and found this one that I liked.

This would normally say appliqué to me but since I have been doing quite a bit of paper piecing lately I took a different path! That said, I have only ever used other people's patterns and not actually created one myself before. But hey, first time for everything, right?!

So I jumped in feet first and this is the progress I have made.

Im not sure that starting with such a complicated picture as my first paper piecing design was the most sensible idea! But, hey ho! It has been a great challenge and I am certainly learning from my mistakes!

Thankfully I have given myself lots time to do this one and not my usual time frame of completing it on the eve of the birthday! Mind you I shouldn't say that it's not finished yet and time has a funny habit of slipping away very quickly sometimes.

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Blogger's Quilt Festival Fall 2013

After admiring the quilts entered into previous Blogger's Quilt Festivals I decided this time I would enter one of mine into the Home Machine Quilted category.

Back at the beginning of the year I took part in the Something New Sampler blog hop organised by Amy at 13 Spools. A total of 9 different blocks were presented by 9 different bloggers each using a different technique and putting a modern spin on it. The blocks were also an interesting size being 7" x 14"! Certainly a size and shape I hadn't tried before. 

I picked out my fabric bundle, colours that were also quite different for me, and set to making the blocks. I like taking part in quilt alongs as it keeps me motivated and focused, and I often need the pressure to get things done! 

Some of the blocks went together better than others and there were some that I was not particularly keen on after giving them a go! But it's good to try new things to know they don't suit you. 

Here are the blocks whilst I played around with different layouts.

To finish off this 'new technique' quilt I decided I would experiment with the quilting. I had, until this point, only really used a stippling pattern when free motion quilting as I was usually too scared to try out new patterns for fear of ruining a quilt top. But since each block was quite small I decided they were an ideal size to play with. How much could go wrong in 7" x 14"! This was quite a challenge, but I really enjoyed it.

I quilted each block differently but once I had practiced on the block I took the quilting out to the adjacent plain block to fill out the white space.

Trapunto Block
Scraptastic Block

Cathedral Windows
Curve piecing
And the final quilt looked like this:

I loved how this quilt turned out in the end. But my most favourite part of this quilt is the trapunto block and the quilting. This is the back of the quilt block, I just love how the quilting really makes the trapunto stand out and gives it some great texture.

Linking up to Blogger's Quilt Festival by Amy:


Quilt Stats:
Fabric : 9 dots by Henry Glass, Kona white and a Bella green (can't remember the name!)
Size: 38" x 65"
Started: January 2013
Finished: May 2013

Monday, 7 October 2013

A Lovely Year of Finishes - October

I am spending much of this month in my home town back in the UK visiting family and friends. To reduce the chaos only one of the kids has come with me as it's not really a vacation but more a family visit, but that is a different story. 

I have bought with me a couple of hand sewing projects that have been on going for a while now!! In the hope that I'll get some time to get on with them.

First up, my hexies. I thought this would be an ideal little project at the airport and on the plane. But I was quite tired on the plane (a night flight) and knowing I had a 4 hour drive when we arrived, the sewing didn't even make it out of my bag!!

But now having nearly got used to the time difference (8 hours) I have actually managed to stay awake long enough in the evening to sew some hexies together! Progress, yay!

The other little project is some cathedral windows that I am sewing by hand. I started these nearly 5 years ago! And I haven't got all that far yet! I clearly don't favour hand sewing over machine sewing!! 

So I have lots of these little squares that are ready to be turned into cathedral windows, as this picture shows!

So for this month's goal I would like to finish sewing together all my hexies into a mini quilt top. That is going to require me making a decision on a design though!!