Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Hugs & Kisses

Look what I quilted yesterday! This is a 'Hugs and Kisses' table runner. (The pattern makes X's and O's, a suitable sentiment for Valentine's Day)) I'd originally used this pumpkin seed pattern in an autumnal coloured quilt. Now I wanted to see how the design played out in other colours. It was fun choosing lots of pinks and reds and lots of different whites.

First I needed to choose the threads.

I wanted a lacy look so it had to be 'Lace White'.

For the quilting, I began by simply scalloping around the edges. I wanted to achieve a 'doily' look. Scallops are such a useful and prolific pattern. Once you start looking for them you'll see them everywhere! I'll post the rest tomorrow.

Monday, 14 February 2011

Chocolate Box

I found this little 'chocolate box' quilt when I was looking for my secret stash of heart fabric. It's something I made up myself several years ago, using very basic paper pieced hearts in chocolate box fabrics. Then I added some appliqu├ęd 'chocolates' to fill in the middle spaces. I aimed for a good mix of dark, milk and white, and of course some pretty wrapped chocolates too. I think it looks good enough to eat!

But I'm pretty sure that the everyone in my house will enjoy these a bit more. Happy Valentines's Day! When all these sweets are gone, I'll still have the little quilt!

Saturday, 12 February 2011

The Happy Dance

Sometimes people say such lovely things that you just have to blog about it! Cricket lives in southern Maryland. Maryland is my home state, and in my younger days, when I was teaching 7 and 8 year olds, our school would visit a summer camp very near Cricket's home town. It's fun for me to be able to picture the location! Cricket ordered a La Mer DVD on New Year's EVE. I think the snow wreaked havoc with the US postal service and the DVD got lost in the chaos. So we sent another and both have now arrived and Cricket has finally got the chance to view it. Here's what she thought:

"GOT THE DVD!!!!! I am doing the Snoopy "Happy Dance"!!!!!!Thank you so much for being persistent with the US Mail! I received the both the one on 12/31/2010 and 2/4/2011 today! Isn't that crazy!

You make this so easy! You are a wonderful and talented & gifted teacher! It is an absolute pleasure watching you teach! It is obvious you have a passion for quilting and teaching. You take the mystery out of the process and break it down in simple steps. The film crew and you produced a very professional DVD that is so informative and fun! Thank you so much for sharing your talents!!! I agree wholeheartedly with Jill! You need to another DVD with you quilting a whole quilt!

Thank you for sending the fabric piece quilted on fleece. I want to try that it looks wonderful. I was always told that it was very hard to work with but yours looks stunning! My husband is looking at plans to build a table for me. 30 X 72 and hopefully two feet extensions with piano hinges on both sides. He is still researching as the support for the extensions is a bit baffling to him at the moment.

Are you traveling to the US this year to Houston or any of the shows? Any updated on the NEQ II? I am dying to see what it looks like and how it is going. I am like a kid in a candy shop!

Again, thank you very much! I absolutely love the DVD and can't wait for the next one you are working on to be released!"


We agree with Snoopy;
"Dancing the only pure art form!"

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Back Tracks

There is something about fleece which beautifully captures the line designs of the quilted patterns. The velvety nap of the fleece creates shadows and accentuates the texture.

When I'm quilting with fleece, I match the bobbin thread to the fleece colour. This helps the bobbin thread to disappear into the texture.

Monday, 7 February 2011

Binding Issues

I love using fleece. But I don't enjoy sewing binding through it! So for this project I came up with a way to skip that part of the process. I've sliced a strip of strippy fabric that picks out some of the colours of the paisley. I've folded it and ironed it as if it were going to be used for french binding. In this photo, I'm sewing it against the quilted paisley selvage.

Now I've pinned the fleece so the fold is even and sewn it down.

Now I've flipped over the stripy fabric so that it covers up the seam and topstitched it down.

All I now need to do is fold the corners to mitre them and hand stitch them securely.

This came together so quickly! And I've loved NOT having to sew a proper binding. The fleece is lush and lovely. The paisley texture is great too. Don't you just love 'pre-marked' fabric!

Saturday, 5 February 2011

Paisley Wholecloth

I've been saving this lovely paisley fabric to make a snuggly quilt for my mom. She loves these colours. A couple of weeks ago I found the perfect fleece for it. I decided quilt around the paisley pattern on the fabric. First, I needed to choose the thread. I liked both of these Rainbow cones. But I went for the purpley one in the end. The 'Northern Lights' was a perfect match. But it seemed a shame to do all the machine quilting and not have it show up. Clicking on the images shows up the threads and fabric.

Our cat Tipsy is testing it out! Quilting around the paisley pattern created an interesting texture and the thread colour worked well too. I have a novel idea about how to do the binding. I'll post about it tomorrow. We're bringing out an updated version of our frame in the next few weeks. Yesterday, I got to try out the new tracks. Paul has designed a new join that is seamless. There is no bump at all, not even a tiny blip when I run the carriage over the join. Fantastic!