Tuesday, 28 October 2008

One that got away

Here is a crazy foundation pieced quilt which now lives at my daughter's house pictured with one satisfied customer.

Group sewing day

Our Crab & Winkle group had a sewing day in Maggie's workroom and Mary worked on her Hidden Wells border trying out various versions with various pieces of helpful advice while Melanie quickly produced a cushion sized patchwork from the scraps from Pam's Hidden Wells - perhaps it will be a quillow.

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Guild Birthday Show & Tell

The small square piece is by Pauline and part of a community project to make work inspired by an old quilt which originated from Knowle and belonged to Vita Sackville-West later purchased by the local museum service; the larger brown piece was by Ruth our new new representative and made some years ago; the oblong piece is another one by Astrid made for the Thin Blue Line exhibition and is based on the Crack, an installation at the Tate Modern and the primary coloured quilt is another of Annette's - she uses a lot of curved piecing. I think she said this one was inspired by Roy Lichtenstein's work. I thought Astrid's piece was very successful - her thin blue line was integral rather than being a necessary addition as in some of the other exhibits and the presence of the two figures gave rise to layers of meanings, whether real fissures or metaphorical ones.

Saturday, 25 October 2008

Quilters Guild Birthday

Here in East Kent we celebrated the 29th birthday of the British Quilters'Guild with a cake, a show and tell of the contemporary suitcase collection, a donation of warm quilts to MS sufferers, a talk and quilts by Annette Claxton and our own Show & Tell.
The small piece was contributed to the suitcase collection by Astrid, a local member and the larger quilt was one of Annette's.

Friday, 24 October 2008

Quilt as you go Houston Stars 5

I partially pieced the bottom left section to the centre portion then added the bottom right, top right and top left sections and finally, completed the partially sewn seam and joined the rest of the bottom left section to the top left. The main section of the quilt is complete.

Thursday, 23 October 2008

Quilt as you go Houston Stars 4

Once the fronts have been attached turn the sewn unit over and press the folded strip over the join and slipstitch down by hand making sure your stitches don't go through to the front.
I carried on like this joining sewn units to each other until I had 4 large sections and one central joined pair of blocks.

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Quilt as you go Houston Stars 3

Place the block with joining strips right sides together with the adjacent block and join, sewing along the top joining strip with a quarter inch seam. Press! Doesn't that look nice! Note the back is still to do - see next post.

Monday, 20 October 2008

Quilt as you go Houston Stars 2

I machine quilted in the ditch with a walking foot and still with the walking foot added joining strips to the back and front of blocks. The top strip was one inch wide and single thickness and placed right sides together. As I was using the walking foot I marked the sewing lines a quarter inch from each edge. The white strip on the reverse was cut one and a half inches wide and folded over and placed on the back of the block with the raw edges at the edge of the block. Both were pinned in place and I attached both at the same time sewing through all thicknesses. Then the top strip was pressed forward.

Sunday, 19 October 2008

Quilt as you go Houston Stars 1

Preparing the Blocks: The block is layered with wadding and backing, then secured with tacking or pinning before sewing around the edge one eighth of an inch inside the seam line. I used a looser tension and longish stitch for this. Then the blocks were trimmed to the unfinished size.

Log Cabin on the bed

This is an early quilt (mid 90's) and some not all of the fabrics have faded dramatically, nothing to do with cost or where bought, so that the outside of the block is not necessarily darker than the cemtre strips. Unlike most of my quilts it has polyester wadding and is quite cuddly. I handquilted round every strip.
It was started in an adult education class with Lee Brown when Inger Milbern was unavailable and I planned to incorporate two block colourways. In the event the combination looked awful so I made two quilts, this one in straight furrows.

Saturday, 18 October 2008

Houston stars

Gwenfai Rees Griffiths' pattern for Houston Stars came out in the British Patchwork and Quilting magazine over several months in 2002. I began it then but there was a mistake in the first month's instructions and, discouraged, I laid it aside only to take it up again when four of us Log Cabin Quilters decided to make it our project and all of us needed the encouragement and urging of the others to get on and keep up. At last the end is in sight. I have pieced my centre, just borders to add. I have used Christmas colours but show Mavis's blocks in lovely pinks. The blocks have been joined using quilt as you go techniques and I'll show some photos of this process in forthcoming posts.

Thursday, 16 October 2008

Vintage quilts on the bed

I love the green and white Roman Stripes quilt I made in a workshop with Jean Ball here in Kent but it doesn't cover the gap where one bed slides under the other so I used the 1900 quilt I bought at FOQ as a partner. My grandson was thrilled when I told him he was sleeping under a hundred year old quilt. The vintage element of the G/W one is the collection of green apron type print fabrics 36 inches wide bought at a craft fair. The size of the quilt was determined by the amount of this fabric. The trimmings from the strip sets were used for the border and I handquilted it using a pattern from "Quiltmaker". It's called apron strings as the cotton prints are reminiscent of the aprons my mother and grandma wore.

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Cluck cluck

I went to the U3A class this morning and Quayquilters this evening when we sorted out different values of blue for next years raffle quilt. The combination of blues and a cream background should prove a winner.
Last time we met one of our members was making chicken doorstops while another had made an impressive rooster. They got together in the course of the evening!
I also chatted to a friend about the Paducah situation and learnt of a new posting on the net. Having checked this out, I am feeling more hopeful. I loved my last trip and feel the town of Paducah really deserves the show as they make us feel so welcome.

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Quilt Show purchases & Paducah worries

Right until the very end of the Knitting and Stitching Show my fabric purchases amounted to 2 FQs only but right at the end I succumbed and bought 5 half metres (56 inches wide no less) of plains for a very reasonable price with charity quilting in mind. I wash all my fabrics so here they are on the line.
I've been restrained partly because of a planned trip to the AQS Show in Paducah next year and have paid for my room at the Executive Inn up front via the lottery they held in the early summer and received a confirmation. Now I am reading in the Kentucky local press online that all is not well with the hotel and its new owner and wonder what is going to happen. I'm certainly not booking any flights just yet and wonder if the show can go ahead if the hotel isn't functioning. They certainly don't answer phone calls or emails though the closure is supposed to be for refurbishment. Given the present financial climate I am wondering whether I'll see the money or the accommodation.

Monday, 13 October 2008

Fine Cell Work

Speaking of prison baby quilts, Fine Cell Work had a booth at Alexandra Palace. They were reluctant to allow photographs so here is the front of their brochure. Fine Cell Work holds quilt and other craft classes in some prisons including HMP Wandsworth, a male prison and home to some quite tough customers. The quilts and other items sell for highish sums and a proportion is kept by the maker which is useful for them on release. Also the soothing and calm activity must make the long hours confined to cells morebearable and perhaps is a pointer to time usefully spent once on the outside. I used to work in a prison which makes this a cause dear to my heart.

Sunday, 12 October 2008

Yet another mystery quilt

After my day at the Knitting & Stitching Show, which incidentally is organised by Twisted Thread the organisation behind The Festival of Quilts, I went to our Crab & Winkle Group meeting where Marion handed me the mystery quilt she made which is destined for a prison baby, yet another colourway and very effective. It's great to see how much local quilters have taken this cause to heart.

Friday, 10 October 2008

Knitting & Stitching at Alexandra Palace

Today I went to the Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexander Palace high on a hill with trees on the slopes shading into autumn colours and inside magnificent architectural details and lots to delight: traders of course but also lots of booths displaying the work of textile artists, students and craft guilds. There were also gallery settings of work by particular makers or groups.
The show seems to reflect the current crafty passions with hand knitting to the fore this year.

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

While on retreat during the Hever Show Jennie showed us how to make a small pocket or pouch. I didn't make one at the time as I hadn't brought any spare materials but did make one when I got home. I need to have another go as I used heavy vilene but would prefer wadding and I had planned to have little frogs on one fabric peeping out as a feature - they've landed up on the bottom.
Meanwhile Quay Quilters have a-make-something-in-a-particular-colour challenge ; my colour was blue so this will do for that.