23 July 2014

seabreeze mini quilt along

Hi there - thanks for joining me for the Seabreeze Mini quilt-along...

excuse me while I just sweep the cobwebs off my poor neglected little blog !! Ah that's better...

Thanks to Angie at GnomeAngel for organising such a fun blog hop - she has selected the Sea Breeze Mini by Megan Bohr of Canoe Ridge Creations for the quilt-along.  All of the details of the quilt-along are on Angie's blog and she is doing profiles on each of the bloggers so make sure you check it out !

I love making mini quilts - they're quick and easy and also a great way of of trying out a design before committing to anything larger !

I also love half square triangles - they are such fun and so versatile so of course this is the perfect combination for  me !

While thinking about fabric choices  I tried out a few different combinations for the quilt in EQ7

I think there is definitely a pink and white seabreeze in my future !

I decided to go with the solids this time - just for something different !  I used a mix of Spotlight Prima, Michael Miller Cotton Couture, and Art Gallery Fabrics Pure Elements but I've matched pretty closely to the following Kona solids:

Baby Pink, Carnation, Bright Pink, Cactus, Sprout, Lime, Bahama Blue, Azure, and Lagoon.

I'm calling it "Into the Shade" due to the ombre effect of going from light to dark !

I've put the top together and started quilting in straight lines - after looking at it for the past few days I've decided I need to do a few more lines of quilting - I have a bit of an addiction to matchstick quilting but I'm going to refrain from doing that on this one !

I'm also making a cushion/pillow for a giveaway - I'm making a smaller version of the mini with 2 inch blocks which will make an 18 inch cushion/pillow - I've used the same fabrics as my mini quilt - not sure how I'll quilt that one yet - maybe straight line or maybe cross hatching !

and because I love this pattern so much I've made a start on another cushion !  eeek somebody stop me !

I've made quite a few mini quilts with the eternally cute half square triangle block.  I like to sew them the old fashioned way - using my hera marker to mark a line diagonally on the square and sew on either side which is how I made the blocks for both the solid mini and cushion - I usually only cut my blocks 1/2 inch larger rather than the normal 7/8 inch so that I don't have as much waste.

However, last weekend I found another way of sewing the blocks together - I saw the Clearly Perfect Angle sheet on a sewing machine which jogged my memory that I actually had purchased one a few years ago and as I couldn't use it with my old machine it was put away.

After a bit of a search I found it and it fits the new machine really well !

it is a plastic sheet marked with angled lines - as well as sewing half square triangles you can use it to sew diagonal corners, joining strips for bindings and probably lots of other uses - all without having to mark your blocks.  I decided to give it a go and made some more triangles for another cushion - I'm happy with how they turned out but I might just make my blocks a little bigger next time I use the clearly perfect angle - giving me a little more wiggle room !

As I mentioned I'm currently making a cushion/pillow for a giveaway next Tuesday 29 July - if you are visiting from Instagram I'll be posting about it there as well as here so you won't miss out !

To continue with the Seabreeze Mini Quilt-along blog hop - tomorrow's bloggers are Rachel @ Little White Dove and Penny @ Happy Spider Knits Podcasts - can't wait to see what fabrics they're using !

I also hope you checked out yesterday's bloggers Kellie and Gillian from Secret Society Sewing - Gillian even printed her own fabrics to use !

Have fun making your own Seabreeze Mini and don't forget to come back next week for the cushion/pillow giveaway !

07 May 2014

ALYoF April and May !

a mini quilt is my goal for A Lovely Year of Finishes for May but first a roundup of my April almost finish !

The Happy Weekender quilt was my goal for the April ALYoF and I'm happy to report that I added the borders to the already half made top and also completed the quilting - yippee !

If I'd got my butt into gear I might have had the binding done before the ALYoF linky deadline - I just needed to clean off my cutting table so I could trim and square up - its funny though - I was tossing up about machine sewing the binding or hand sewing so I think that was really the issue that held me up !

I'm pretty happy with the quilting - its an all over "meander" of loops and hearts - this is the second time I've used this design - I feel pretty comfortable with it already so I'm hoping that if I keep practicing I might even be able to think about using another design on my next quilt (or maybe the one after!).

this weekend I'm going to trim and square it up and sew on the binding and I think I might machine sew it down - I need to practice so that I can use it on charity quilts that might get a little more rough treatment in the washing department :)

onto my ALYoF project for May ...  I want to finish the Thimbleblossoms mini quilt - Puddlejumping - which uses the rolling stone block.  I've used a Wallflowers charm pack (by Allison Harris of Cluck Cluck Sew) which I think is just adorable!

Its small, simple (although a smidge fiddly) and just the right size project to get done in a few weeks -  I've sewn the blocks together but it still needs sashings then basting, quilting, and binding - oh and yes mum, don't forget the label :)

 A Lovely Year of Finishes

25 April 2014

Lest We Forget

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We will remember them.

08 April 2014

finish-along - my second quarter list

I had six hopefuls on my first quarter list for this year's finish-along and I got two quilts finished - quite an improvement on last year's efforts - and I did make progress on most of the others too so I'm rolling those over to the second quarter list.

I straight line quilted Through the Trees and also sewed on the binding - it just needs to be hand sewn down.

I also sewed the rows together on the double wedding ring quilt so now its ready for quilting.  I'm planning on hand quilting it so it might just go over two quarters but with winter fast approaching it will be nice to sit and sew with a warm quilt on my lap.

I cut out half of the single girl quilt pieces and sewed up quite a few of the arcs so hopefully some more progress this quarter too !

I sewed together the backing for the pink spiderweb quilt so I just need to baste and quilt it - its a charity quilt made by members of the do.good stitches care circle and as its my month again in May I'd like to have this one finished by then !

I'm adding the spinning stars quilt to this quarter list - I sewed all the pieces of the blocks together over the last couple of months so it would be good to get a quilt finished within six months of starting it !

I'm also adding a couple of tops that were made and then put in the cupboard waiting for the quilting - well quilting time is here !!

box of chocolates is a quilt that I made in April 2011 - when I put a photo of it on flickr I had a comment that it looked like a box of chocolates so that's its name !!

another top is my wonky max and whiskers quilt - this one was made in August 2011 and I'd love to be using it this winter - I love the max and whiskers fabric - I did put this one on my 3rd quarter list last year and I said I was going to hand quilt it - well that plan is out the window !

my last one for this quarter is my summer house hexy quilt - the pieces were cut out in September 2011 and the top was finally sewn together in September 2013 - it was on my 3rd quarter list last year so hopefully I'll get the quilting done this quarter - talk about a drawn out finish !

that's eight quilts for my second quarter list - better get started !!

Finish Along 2014

06 April 2014

marney's quilt

eeep - a second finish on my first quarter list in the 2014 finish-along and just in the nick of time !!

yes, I finally finished Marney's quilt - this little quilt was started back in March 2011 and the top was finished in August of that year and then it was put in the cupboard where it stayed until earlier this year.

The issue was the quilting - having no idea how to quilt the top was a bit of a problem - in fact I made quite a few tops in 2011 that are still waiting to be quilted but now that I have the Bernina I'm just going for it :)

last weekend I sat down and swirly circle quilted it - it didn't take too long and I was pretty happy with the result then I sewed down the binding in a few sessions during the week and finished the last few stitches this morning !!

I'm sure lots of people would be able to see issues with the quilting but as they say better done than perfect and I know Marney will be happy just to receive the quilt ! 

it was her birthday on Thursday and I hope to be able to give her this little quilt soon:)

Quilt Stats
pattern: pint-sized wild thing by Thimbleblossoms
top fabric: Max and Whiskers and orange grunge background - both by Basic Grey
backing fabric: Max and Whiskers
binding fabric: black grunge
batting: Warm and White cotton 
quilting: swirly circles by me
thread: Masterpiece #119 by Superior Threads

 linking up to
Finish Along 2014

05 April 2014

april goal for a lovely year of finishes

after missing out on linking up my March finish I'm hoping to be a bit more organised this month!

my April goal for finishing is the happy weekender quilt.  Its a moda bakeshop pattern by Kim who blogs at my go go life  - its an easy pattern and as Kim says can be made in a weekend or two - that is unless you run out of fabric like I did and it gets put into a cupboard even though the fabric I ordered arrived quite some time ago !

at the beginning of last year I bought a pile of charm squares with the aim of putting together some quick quilts so that I could practice my free motion machine quilting !

the result is one finished top, two almost finished tops and two charm packs still waiting to be made into quilts - oh and no free motion quilting practice !  This happy weekender quilt is one of the almost finished tops that was made over a weekend in August so it really is quick and easy to put together.

I'm going to aim high this month and finish the happy weekender quilt which needs the borders and quilting and binding.

linking up to A Lovely Year of Finishes

04 April 2014

catvent - a first quarter finish !!

I put six quilts on my first quarter list in this year's finish-along - I know it was a long shot but as a few of them were close to finished I decided to aim high !!

I'm pleased to say that I finished the Catvent quilt and even entered it into our local show in the middle of March so its been finished for a little while !!

The Catvent quilt is a pattern by Elizabeth Hartman - Elizabeth decided to make it into a quilt along in December last year by making one block a day from the 1st to 25th December.

I didn't get the background fabric to start on time but I did get the top finished just after christmas.  It has some of my favourite fabrics include a piece of corduroy that is quite a few years old !

After lots of umming and ahhing about what to back it with I finally decided to use the same grey solid as it was going to be hanging on the wall so the backing wasn't going to show !

I quilted it with a crosshatch about an inch apart which I think looks good and allows those cute cat faces to shine.

Its also got a hanging sleeve and is now hanging happily on the wall in my lounge room !

Quilt Stats
pattern: catvent quilt along by Elizabeth Hartman
top fabric: grey prima homespun and fabrics from my stash
backing fabric: grey prima homespun
binding fabric: grey prima homespun
batting: Warm and White cotton 
quilting: diagonal straight lines by me
thread: So Fine 50wt #504 by Superior Threads

so there you have my first finish in this year's finish-along !

Finish Along 2014

03 April 2014

show winners !

I managed to get mum's cushion (pillow) made by the deadline to enter it into the local show a couple of weekends ago.

I started it on the weekend before so it didn't take that long to do.

I love how it comes together in stages :)

I did a bit of quilting on it - both the centre pieces as well as around the outside of the points and geese and love how it turned out.

As I also got the binding done on the catvent quilt I decided to enter that as well, along with Lucy's cot quilt that I made last year.

I went to the show which was held on Saturday 15 March and was amazed to find a second prize ticket on Lucy's quilt ! I couldn't believe it - I thought that having the binding machine sewn would automatically mean it wouldn't get a look it but not so !!

I walked along a bit further and saw my catvent quilt (the little multi-coloured cat faces in the bottom left of this photo) - its really quite exciting to see pieces you've made on display with heaps of others :)

No ticket but I love it - the one that won that section is up above it to the right - the one with the NY Beauty and Brolgas - a stunning quilt !

I found mum's cushion a little further along and nearly fell over when I saw the first prize ticket on it !! oh my goodness I was just a little excited :)  turns out that the section I'd entered it in came with a first prize of $10 - woo hoo - most of the other sections pay $2 for first and $1 for second (entries are only 50 cents) so I scored really big with that one !!

When I went to pick up my entries I discovered I'd also won a digital radio in a raffle and later that afternoon I found out I'd won a $30 voucher to GnomeAngel fabric shop through Instagram - so all in all a wonderfully lucky day !!

not so lucky that I'd got mixed up about linking up to a lovely year of finishes in the last seven days of the month - not the first seven of the next month !! but hey - I got my finish done and that's the main thing :)

so I'm off to find another long overdue project to link up to A Lovely Year of Finishes for April !

22 March 2014

It's a Pantone finish !!

Meet my newest mini quilt - Pixelated Purple Heart !

I decided to join in the Pantone Radiant Orchid challenge as I have quite a few purples in my stash - originally I made another small quilt for the challenge but I ran out of a fabric and I'm having issues trying to replace it - but that's a story for another day!

On Monday I saw a photo by @thatswhatlindseymade on Instagram and immediately thought of doing the pixelated heart but as a mini - I just reduced the size of the squares from 5 inches to 1 inch!

 By Wednesday night the top was pieced 

on Thursday night I sat at my machine for a wonderfully therapeutic matchstick quilting session - the mini is 15 inches square - it took around 3 hours to quilt and with stitching about a 1/8 inch apart its got around 20,000 quilting stitches ! love that my sewing machine counts the stitches for me !

I wasn’t sure about using the dark thread on the background but decided to just do it and I’m really happy with how it turned out !

and it took me a little while to work out that I could just move the needle over rather than cut threads at the end of each line !!

I finished off the binding earlier today.

Quilt Stats
size: 15” square
pattern: Pixelated Heart – free pattern from Robert Kaufman
top fabrics: various prints and solids from my stash – Kona Snow background
backing fabric: Art Gallery Fabrics – Oval Elements in Prune
binding fabric: Kona Snow
batting: Warm and White cotton

quilting: matchstick straight line by me
thread: King Tut #948 by Superior Threads

The challenge was organised by Adrianne over at On the Windy Side and Anne at Play Crafts and its been fabulous to see the different quilts being made over at the flickr page

I’m so glad to have made the challenge deadline and I’d best be off to upload the link - it closes soon ! 

** edited to add that I missed out on getting my link on the challenge page - I've had issues my laptop and the internet most of the day which is a bit of a bummer (must learn how to do a blog post and add photos on my ipad) but at least I have a sweet mini for my wall :) ** 

2014 Pantone Quilt Challenge: Radiant Orchid

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