Saturday, 31 October 2015

Pumpkin Patch

This year we had a pumpkin patch just down the road! 
So we got to see the pumpkins change from flower to fruit.

I thought that this fabric from Dinara Mirtalipova - Mischief Night really did capture the pumpkin patch perfectly. It made just the right border. The pumpkins we so fun to trace around! This variegated Fantastico thread was just what I needed to create beautiful texture.

Dinara Mirtalipova - Mischief Night brought to life with Fantastico # 5023 Orange Marmalade

The pumpkin patch quilt just off the 6 foot New English Quilter frame machine quilted with the straight stitch JUKI TL98P
  I created pumpkins in all sorts of shapes and sizes for the middle.

 And raw-edge appliquéd them to the black pieced background.

The fun part was adding all the detail with free-motion quilting using lots of gorgeous threads from various Superior Threads ranges. The light-reflecting tri-lobal polyester in the Magnifico and Fantastico ranges really made the pumpkins shine.

While the bold matt line from the King Tut100% extra long staple Egyptian cotton gave just the right texture for the vines and leaves. Of course the Superior Metallic was just super for the spider's web. All these threads were designed to go at high speeds for machine quilting. So I didn't need to worry about thread  shredding or breaking. 

Happy Halloween!
I hope that you enjoy your pumpkins as much as I do mine!
The pumpkin patch down the road has long since been harvested and ploughed under but my pumpkin patch art quilt is still here looking lovely.

This Juki Exceed 600 was brilliant for the piecing, appliqué and binding! 

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Double Duty Teacher Quilt

Baby Arthur learning to crawl on the 'Teacher Quilt'
Five years ago, when my youngest son Peter was leaving primary school, his teacher had her first baby. So, of course I had to make her a quilt. Today Mrs Wheatley messaged me to say that she was using the quilt for her second child Arthur. There is something so sweet about babies and quilts! I'm so glad that she gets to use it twice.

I've included the photos added on to the original blog post below.

When my youngest son, Peter's teacher was going to have a baby, I had to make a quilt. The end of term is a useful deadline for this kind of thing. So when the Tuesday of the last week of term came round, I told my friend Allie that I had to finish a quilt I hadn't started yet. I decided to use only what was on hand and gave Peter's teacher the option of brights or pastels. She went for brights.

People who don't quilt think of quilts usually as lots of little squares of fabric sewn together and sometimes it's just best to give people what they want. Tuesday night I sorted through my stash and cut the squares. Wednesday I pieced the top.

Thursday I pieced the back, and the wadding. Yes, I basted leftover pieces of wadding together and it worked just fine in the end. Then I went off task and made a quick table runner for the Headmaster who was also leaving. I called it ' The Writing on the Wall'.

That left Friday for the quilting which was a joy and easily finished in time for a 2:00 leavers service.

I used an overall hearts and loops pattern quilted with a variegated Rainbows thread from Superior Threads #803 Northern Lights and a pre-wound bottom line in the bobbin.

I did keep the quilt over the weekend to put on the binding, which BTW, takes me longer than the quilting!! But it gives me the chance to enjoy the quilt while I'm hand sewing the binding, to glory in the fabric and the texture and be happy to have made something beautiful and useful!

I liked the back almost as much as the front on this one.

Pete's teacher, Mrs Wheatley popped round to collect the quilt yesterday! She was delighted and I'm feeling happy ... and just a bit bereft.

Friday, 9 October 2015

Gail Thomas!

Gail Thomas with her award winning quilt Houston Quilt Festival 2011
Last week, Gail sent me some photos of our 4 foot Art Quilter frame set up in her studio. Before I share the photos, I'd like to share the story of how we met. We met Gail Thomas back in 2011 when we were demonstrating our NEQ frames at the Houston Quilt Festival. We were busy running our JUKI/New English Quilter frames through their paces, when I noticed this amazing woman playing with our Art Quilter frame. She was so striking and looked really familiar. Then I realized that I'd seen her on a quilt!

This is Gail Thomas, one of the 'three sisters' , you'll recognize Gail as the one on the left. The Three Sisters are girls from Canada, America and Australia who met at the 2006 Quilt Show and created this award winning quilt for the following year!

Gail took me over to see her quilt for this year so I could take some photos. 2011 marks the 175th anniversary of Texas' independence from Mexico so there was a section of this year's exhibition dedicated to Texas history. Gail's quilt above called 'Someone Found' tells the story of a girl Cynthia Ann Parker who was captured by the Comanche indians and became the mother of one of the most famous Comanche warriors, Chief Quannah Parker.

In this photo, Gail is showing us the quilting detail. And the quilting is totally awesome but I love the photo for another reason. Gail used her daughter as the model for Cynthia Ann Parker. In this photo looking from Gail to her daughter depicted in the quilt, the pose is so similar that no one could fail to see the resemblance!

Gail loved our frame! She left the Houston Quilt Festival the happy owner of a new 4 foot Art Quilter which is just the right size for her studio.

Our 4 foot New English Quilter Art frame & JUKI 2010 set up in Gail Thomas' studio
Here's a good photo of the Juki 2010 sitting on the Art Quilter frame carraiges. The Juki 2010 straight stitch sewing machine is a classic workhorse with just the right amount of space under the arm. It's simple to tension and has the necessary speed to get a nice flowing line of stitching. 

The speed control Nifty Grip handles allow Gail to bypass the foot pedal
Notice the set of Nifty Grip speed control handles at the far right of the photo. These handles replace the foot pedal! They're ergonomically designed to be comfortable as you guide the sewing machine  every-which-way,  just like the much larger long arm machines.
The 4 foot Art Quilter frame is ideal for smaller projects and fits perfectly in small spaces.
"Thought I would send these as I look like I am relax and chilling.

 They are taken in my small quilting studio.

 Thank you again Martha."

Love Gail
ps. I love the frame ...XXXOOO