Sunday, 28 August 2011

Folkestone Show

Here are quilts in the side aisle of St Saviours, a super display area as it is very lofty and light, the walls are white painted brick and the floor has been renewed. Also chairs are in use instead of pews.

 I was drawn to the squares quilt above because I'm currently making a squares quilt and it's not so easy after all. I love the fabric combinations in this one. The ninepatches on a single background fabric with no sashing is an idea to keep on file and I am collecting photos of quilts made from this outer space line because I have some of it myself.

Two to go to today

Deal, Kent UK

Challenge items

A cover for a restored rocking horse

Young Oast display. Clever 7 year old's
squares quilt at rignt.

Tracy A's KG quilt

Di H's KG quilt
There were two quilt shows on this Bank Holiday weekend and we set off on a grand tour. First stop Deal for the Dragonflies show  which is in rather a cramped church hall but lots of lovely individual quilts and exhibits including by young quilters, one as young as seven! I paid special attention to two started in the same Katherine Guerrier class I attended - they pop up everywhere. Pattern in her book
Scrap Quilt Sensation

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Using Farmers' Wives blocks

Once I got to the point where I didn't have enough of these fabric choices left I used the blocks I had in lilac, green and yellow to make this top. I think it needs a further wide border but haven't any suitable fabric so I'll complete it later.
If it turns out well I'll keep it on hand  as a special present for some new baby.
I'm, also making steady progress with the blue squares - 6 blocks now joined.

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Blue Squares

1. Piles of squares according to value with fabric "key"

I have just started making a quilt composed of blue squares for a friend's daughter who experienced a quilt on holiday and now passionately wants one. I am always making quilts and being from a small family am somewhat short of recipients so I offered to make her one. I gave her some books and invited her to our group quilt show and she turned out to be a very good client as she knew exactly what she wanted - not what I expected her to want. Her  brief was squares, blue (and the quilt she was looking at was rather old fashioned grey blue squares but but not suitable as it had a large applique superimposed) with a plain border and cable quilting. Belatedly I realised I might have made a mistake in exposing her to some very stunning and complex New York Beauties and exquisite applique made by group members so boy was I relieved. I'm using my stash of blues long hidden and cut up rather more than needed . A purchase of 5 FQs was the starting point to give some continuity to the whole. All were mediums and I added more then two paler piles and two darker piles. I am doing 16 "blocks" each composed of twenty 3.5" (finished) squares arranged four by five and assembled 16 piles on my table arranged as the blocks in the quilt will be. I took care to distribute patterns and values evenly. Then I took a middle pile C3 and set out the squares and sewed consistently keeping the arrangement intact by repeated chain piecing so all twenty were joined together in five separate rows then joined. I'm keeping a pressing diagram as I go along. Then the next block was set out with reference to the one just completed, sewn and joined.
2 Rows chain pieced horizontally and vertically

3 Two blocks done

4 and joined together

Monday, 22 August 2011

Usual Suspects Day Out

Judi's acquisition
Today the Usual Suspects drove into the country to lunch with a member who has moved some distance away but meet up with twice a year, in the summer at her home and for our Christmas lunch at Reads. Show and tell included three projects by Belinda reflecting her bright and modern fabric choices and Judi's purchase of a piece by Linda Kemshall.
Belinda's Twisted Sisters

A completed quilt by Belinda

Quilt started in a Katharine Guerrier
workshop on Belinda's design wall.

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Janome Day - last one?

Today was a Janome day - lots of Show & Tell and people working on different projects and different sorts of projects. There is a strong machine embroidery element in the group which I find very interesting. However my diary is just too full so I have said today will be my last regular attendance. If I sell my Horizon I won't be able to attend - perhaps I would have to get a Janome Jem just to get in from time to time. It is such a wide cross secion of people whom I don't meet anywhere else. Margaret H. (one of numerous Margarets in the group) had masses of bias made with her electric bias maker in a wonderful selection of fabrics - these are for her Malvern entry so await next year for the result.

Eileen's bag uses the convergence technique and, inside, has divisions for the different sizes of rulers. Jenny made the day's project - a dress for Africa. (Cathy wrote "For further information, go to  and scroll down the page and click on "Click here for Pillowcase Dress Directions", then on that web page click on the Youtube link to watch "Sewing with Nancy" make one of these quick dresses. The video is not very long at all.")

I'm afraid I didn't note the names of the members who made the scrap quilt top (designed and planned by Cathy) or the hearts and 9-Patches top.
I am combining my latest selection of Farmers' Wives for a baby quilt top and made good progress considering all the chat and sharing - I'll finish the inside bit and post it next week but I want to border it and need to source a suitable fabric
FQ Quilt

Eileen's ruler bag

Quilt top

Jenny's dress for Africa

Friday, 19 August 2011

Farmers Wives again

I've added more FW blocks to the pile but I am running out of my pretty lilac. yellow and green fabric combinations.
45 Grape Basket

67 Pine tree

68 Postage Stamp

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Ready to quilt

My reference book!

I have been home alone briefly and took the opportunity to set up my tables in the living room, one folded up on top of the other to lend some height to the proceedings. I was sandwiching my stack and slash workshop quilt from an Oast workshop earlier in the summer. I think of this as my Japan quilt as I've taken the unlikely notion into my head that it has a Japanese feel to it. The top can be seen here on my post for 20th June called Portland quilt after the place where the fabrics were bought and I'll keep this name.

However the quilting will impart a Japanese feel. I like to draft sashiko designs on a larger scale. I drafted the Toridasuki pattern on a 3.5" grid and cut out card templates which I used to mark the design on the top using felt tip pens. I couldn't maintain the regularity of the original but that's fine.
I had to augment the backing with leftover fabric and think it will be all the better for it.
Cardboard templates for quilting

Quilt markings in grey felt tip.

My printed source

For wadding I opted for Cream Rose as I wanted something thin for summer use. It clung to the backing and it was hard to keep the backing fabric unwrinkled so I turned the two over and ironed the backing fabric onto the wadding.  Once done this unit became very straight and stable - the clinginess working to advantage then I turned it back over and placed the marked top down over it. As I plan to hand quilt I tacked not pinned.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011


Pastel farmers' wives

Bright 30's farmers' wives

Teeny baby quilt 18" square

Additional FW's
Although I have been out and about I have been busy at home too making a small top for a baby in hospital and I'veswitched my Farmers' Wives from C19th repros to 30's pastels. I have a large collection of the latter but have selected coordinating groups to make sets of blocks from more or less keeping going till I run out of that particular seam.

Festival of Quilts

Shopping is a major activity as there are only a few patchwork shops in the UK and they tend to be small scale so we rely on shows to view a wide range and seek out some specialized items. I was armed with a list which included a roll of blues from Worn and Washed specializing in recycled and vintage fabrics. The roll on the centre on the counter had my name on it.
Others beat a door to Farbstof for Heidi Stol Weber's very expensive and beautiful hand dyed pieces but I haven't ventured to purchase as yet.
I liked the various do not touch notices!

Monday, 15 August 2011

Festival of Quilts

Popular Patchwork stand with a Katharine Guerrier project on show
Jennifer Hollingdale's gallery
A class working on fabric choices for a quilt from a Kaffe
Fasset Rowan publication

I've just spent a very enjoyable couple of days at the Festival of Quilts at the NEC, our great big annual show show. I love the non juried aspect of the show though it leads to some strange entries on occasion and the care with which the work is displayed especially the gallery conditions for invited groups or makers. There were so many wonderful quilts not just the ones of professional standard but lovingly made pieces and intriguing details.

 Unusually for me both my favourites were from the pictorial section. I'm drawn to the geometric side of quilting and as someone who has always loved painting feel slightly uncomfortable when quilts move into this field but I loved Cathy Corbishley Michel's "Endurance 1" using cyanotype printed photographs taken by Frank Hurley of the Shackleton expedition to Antartica. (click on the screen and the quilt is one of the first to be shown)
The pictures of the men who endured incredible danger and survived and the haunting images of the dying ship caught in the ice were well served by Catherine's straightforward presentation. Less is more.
This visitor's choice was "Life" by Annabel Rainbow. While some of the quilted writing was quirky and referencing a typical tongue in cheek attitude to weight issues, the age of the sitter and her unflinching gaze had a rather unsettling quality which made this piece a true work of art, I felt. I assume this is a self portrait and the like can be seen rather artily clad at quilt shows everywhere but it's as if she is stripped bare of more than clothing to face mortality and bodily deterioration. (you need to scroll down a short way).
While I can't show pictures of individual quilts I can show some general views to give a flavour of the event. I came across Bonnie McCaffrey filming her report. I expect this won't appear on her site just yet but I enjoy her interviews with other quilters.
Bonnie McCaffrey at work

Egyptian Tentmakers Exhibit

One of the galleries

Thursday, 11 August 2011

More Whitstable quilts

Sylvia Bowman: Twisted Sisters

Twisted Sisters  detail 

Denise Dusse: Summertime

Rosemary Jordan

Shirley Emery: Aromatic Pineapple
More quilts from the Whitstable Show. The pineapple lap quilt was my husband's "Visitor's Choice". I loved the Twisted Sisters done in V & A fabrics and the pentagon log cabins too.

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Whitstable Quilt Show

Maureen Corrigan: Beach Part

Val Tilley: Blue Heaven
Ellen Lehane: Hearts
I've been getting on with my quilting activities but no photos yet. However I took quite a few at the Whitstable Quilt show last weekend. The one draped over the piano is by Terry Escott a male quilter who sadly died some time ago. I always liked his work but despite the knockdown price no room for too many extra quilts in my house. We park at Tankerton and walk along the shore past the beach huts and through the harbour, stopping to swallow a local oyster for which the town is famous. The town was teeming and far out towards Sheppey Thames barges were in full sail.