Sunday, 29 June 2008

Crab & Winkle evening

We had our three weekly meeting and Maggie showed us her completed quilt top - just super.

Saturday, 28 June 2008


I had a lovely day working on UFO's with the Log Cabin quilters - we've renamed ourselves in honour of a member's log cabin in her garden which is to be our unofficial clubhouse. One us of worked on a wedding ring top, two on their Houston Stars quilt and me on some batik snowballs from ablock swap. I'm at the right hand side of the photo and the cabin owner is second from the left. She has just moved into a compact bunglow with her family so the cabin was ordered to accommodate her crafty supplies and interests.

Ninepatch with borders

I added the borders; the last two had not a smidgen to spare but I am now pleased with the effect of a sea of navy and splashes of colour. I think my husband likes this quilt. It may be custom quilted in the autumn.

Wednesday, 25 June 2008


Here is the main body of the quilt, stickers removed. Now for the border. I'm making myself do this and hope I don't mess it up. I find some stages of quiltmaking a hurdle to be got over. I laid out the border pieces down the middle of the quilt marking the points of the blocks with pins to aid placement.

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Joining in sections not rows

I don't like joining quilt blocks or pieces in rows. I try to avoid long seams and normally only sew one seam from side to side of the quilt. Here I do this twice but only one seam is long. Normally I have to draw my seam pressing directions as I go but here the sequence was logical and self explanatory.

The stickers on the ninepatches denote the block placement and the stickers on the setting squares and triangles denote the right side of the fabric which has a self woven pattern rather like damask. I'm not sure if it is the right side but it means it is all the same side!

Sunday, 22 June 2008


I went to bed rather discontented when I'd made my first set of ninepatches but then I made and substituted 5 more. Then I added the setting triangles which made a lot of difference. I had 4 too few - so much for planning but still enough fabric to cut a 14" square diagonally into quarters. Now I'm worrying if I've skimped on the border lengths, especially as I may have been a bit generous on the triangles. . .

Thursday, 19 June 2008

I hope I'm not repeating myself when I say this is some long hoarded navy cotton/linen fabric and some Cherrywood hand-dyes I've been saving. I cut them out yesterday and couldn't wait to get at them this morning. I made exactly the "right" number of blocks but looking at them I feel I need some extras to get the colour balance right - fewer colours. For the first time I hope to hang some wadding up as an impromptu design wall as it's hard to judge standing at the side of them. This is my backstop as a candidate for a custom quilting slot I've booked in the autumn.
As the 9-patches are being set on point with plain blocks and setting triangles I didn't need to pay too much attention to pressing but in fact cut them all out and sewed and pressed the same way.
I cut out 20 3.5 by 14.25 inch strips of navy and the same of the colours and sewed them together along the length, pressing towards the navy. The extra quarter inch give me a bit of leeway. I subcut these stripsets into 4 3.5" units. In addition I had cut out 20 navy 3.5inch squares.
For each block I sewed three pairs together pressing toward the centre pair, I added the floating navy square to the other pair, pressing out to the navy and then added this unit to complete the 9-patch.

Label Enabled!

I have finished the quilt I had intended for Julia who sadly died before it was completed and last night at Quayquilters quilt group I added the label, and for two others. This setting is seen quite often now. my source was a quilt on the regional stand at last years FOQ which used novelty fabrics. I whipped out my tape measure: the oblongs were 5" by 3" bordered either horizontally or vertically by 1" strips to form a 5" (finished) square.
I have just seen another on Helen of the Bailey's webshots site, 2007 album, which uses strips in the centre. I am just sewing strips togetherwondering how to use them and this provided a solution. I hope this is the link:

I have stacked all my files away and yesterday afternoon cut out all the pieces for a quilt in one fell swoop, borders and all!
I am now sewing and it should go together very quickly.

Tuesday, 17 June 2008


This is the state of my sewing room at the moment as I am documenting a year's worth of quilts - I have files with details and photos of each and perhaps fabric swatches, an extra block etc. I number them, grouping smaller quilts under one number as 60a,b,c etc. I'm approaching 80 now! - in quilts not age.

I've also unbasted and unquilted the charity quilt shown in yesterday's blog!

Monday, 16 June 2008

Linus quilt to finish

I'll unpick the quilting and the basting and start again!!

Helping Hands

Yesterday, Saturday afternoon, I drove to just outside Margate. My husband then caught the bus into Margate as he planned to watch the airshow. I popped into a church hall where Thanet Quilters were holding a Linus Day. I handed over two of the Linus Quilts I've made using animal squares and also found someone who will see the person who organises the Helping Hands scheme and handed over the quilt largely made on a work day in May and bound by me. I took a photo of it on the bonnet of my car first.
However it was a case of one step forward, one back as I have brought home a sandwiched top to quilt. It won't be easy as the fabrics are blends, the filling is a hi-loft poly and it isn't sandwiched very flat so there be some redoing. . . No photo asI haven't plucked up the courage to unfold it yet. And foolishly I left behind a box of sewing bits and bobs. Fortunately Alan is going over to Thanet for a Spanish lesson on Wednesday and will collect it for me.

Tuesday, 10 June 2008


We had a Crab & Winkle sewing day at my house and this is what Melanie was working on, a quilt-as-you-go crazy log cabin started at a workshop last year which she led. The red squares are most effective. Maggie was making a quilt for a soon to be born grandchild. The blanket stitched children have wool hair, some plaited. Just lovely. I used my hand turned Singer to make more blocks for my Houston Stars quilt. I now realise I have no record of Mary's Liberty patchwork but will try to photograph it at a later meeting.

Sunday, 8 June 2008


I've received two nice things in the post recently; the first came from a US quilter on the Stashbuster list to whom I'd sent some worksheets. She didn't need to thank me in kind but a lovely box of fabrics came in the post. Next back came a quilt from the Quilters' Guild traditional suitcase collection that had been on its rounds. 24" square, it uses fabric "cheese" from novelty scraps left after fussy cutting and when I ran out of one background fabric I substituted another, Lastly in the spirit of make do and mend I recycled a shirt for the binding. It was hand quilted in largish stitches with leftover cotton knitting yarn off the cone.

Friday, 6 June 2008


I really am going great guns at the moment finishing up small projects which is very satisfying. 2006-7 I made masses of Mary's Triangles for a quilt and ended up with enough for three bed quilts, a lap quilt and a few leftover scraps which ended up in this 25 inch square piece. This is a more or less the designated size for a prison baby quilt. As the fabrics are not particularly babylike I put a pretty pastel floral on the back so the mother can turn it over if preferred. I machine quilted it in straight lines with a walking foot and turned the backing over for a binding. My husband liked this one. Later I'll get round to posting the other Mary's triangles quilts.

Thursday, 5 June 2008


I completed this, a workshop project. I'm trying to work my way through this sort of thing. It's from a workshop I did with Billie Lauder in Houston last year. Everyone else had a neutral background! Someone at our group quilt show may buy it for a young relation called Pansy; otherwise it will go to be a wallhanging for prison babies. these are needed so the little ones get some visual stimulation in their drab environment.
I machine quilted it. It looked horrible while I was doing it but better from a distance once complete. I turned over the back and serpentine stitched to finish.
They say freehand quilting needs practice, in my case practice, practice, practice and practice! I am making myself try on less important items. Next time I'll try music. I drove home to tango music yesterday and it certainly affected my car driving so will see if it will loosen up my quilting muscles.
Other settings of the blocks can be seen on my blog for 25th February this year.

Wednesday, 4 June 2008

Autumn Forest top

I've also pieced the blocks of my autumn quilt. This will be the centre but it will be sandwiched and quilted with unfinished edges as there are size restrictions for our forest challenge. Later I'll add more blocks (already sewn) all round plus a border to make a more useful object. My starter blocks were made as extras for the first internet Pick 'n' Mix block swap and are based on Judy Martin designs.

WHOOPS - wrong way up

This is the
right way up!

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Finished, Finished & Finished

I have finished the three
project Linus quilts. It's
been a very nice way to
play with setting novelty
squares. I have lots more
ideas to try out. I
machined the strip band
binding using a
serpentine stitch.