Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Design Wall Wednesday

These economy blocks are about to come down from my design wall as I need more space for my Fraktal quilt. Whilst sewing up my HSTs and flying geese for my Fraktal quilt, I have 22 blocks complete. I also cut into my V & Co ombre metallics last week and my stash of Bonnie & Camille to add more variety to this project. I have fewer reds and pinks than I thought!!

During the Zoom call on Saturday for the Fraktal sewalong, I started piecing some of the many HSTs into these corner blocks. I am paranoid that I have used the wrong colour for some of the blocks so I want to get the whole quilt so far on the wall so I can do a visual check of the flow of the colours. Fingers crossed. I think I want to add a narrow border of the background around the quilt and will probably bind the quilt in the same colour. Not sure what to use for backing as I have nothing suitable in stash, so I need to order that soon too.

I was stitching both a small Foundation pieced block this morning along with some pieced blocks and I thought this tip might be useful if you have a similar machine to mine. I programme the zig zag stitch with a width 0 and length 1.5 and switch to this stitch when foundation piecing and then switch back to stitch one when doing regular piecing. The change only lasts until the machine is switched off but it's a useful hack for me.

Monday, January 25, 2021

Monday make - January - A year of Celebrations

One of my objectives this year is to complete the whole year of small pieces from A Year of Celebrations by Hands on Design. I did complete December last month and randomly I have also completed June. I still need to purchase July and it is on my wish list along with four Prairie Schooler Santas that I need to have all of the patterns since they started in 1984.

There is still a week left in January and I have completed both the January Cottage and the January A year of celebrations. Can I make it a hat trick and finish my tattoo quilt?

I have kit up the February project and it's ready to go. I was able to purchase the two skeins of DMC yesterday that I needed for the project. I don't know how I'm going to finish these pieces but I have a frame from a charity shop which is the perfect size for the cottages. Once the non essential shops open again in a week's time, I will buy some chalk paint to update the frame.

Friday, January 22, 2021

Friday finish - January cottage


I finished the December cottage from Country Cottage Needleworks which I don't think I've shared with you. I now own all of the patterns for this series apart from July which I need to purchase. My plan is to complete one a month so by the end of the year all twelve will be finished and ready to display in 2022.

I have also completed the snowy January cottage. I am not keen on stitching with white floss so this took longer than it should have. I have already finished the February Cottage so I have kitted up the March Cottage ready to stitch next month. In the meantime I am going to work on the January Hands of Design calendar and quilt my Tattoo quilt.

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

WIP Wednesday - Fraktal sewalong


This kit and sewalong is collaboration between Modern Quilt Club and Paula Steel.  My friend Jane received her kit just before our November retreat and I was able to get a sneaky peek. The pattern is very well laid out and the price was good even including VAT so I made a pre-Christmas purchase. It arrived in a solid cardboard box so I have kept it in the box which makes it easy to see amongst my other WIPS.

I soon realised that there is a lot of cutting for this quilt so I cut the pieces between Christmas and new year whilst waiting for our January UFO to be chosen. I labelled the cut pieces with my alphabet pins and put the box away.

There are also a lot of half square triangles and flying geese units in this quilt so I started doing ten a day and trimming as I went. This week is cutting out week and I notice a lot of participants have started sewing their HSTs. Mine are all done.  Having mixed up two of the fabrics when cutting out I had to lay out the flying geese to check that I had the right numbers and I seem to be okay.

On Monday I decided to start sorting the flying geese units into bags for each steps. I got in such a muddle and appear to have missed cutting some long strips. I hoe I have enough fabric left otherwise I see another order in the near future from Sew Hot. The fabric used is Phospor by Libs Elliott. This morning I have sewn a few of the star blocks (four out of twelve) for which I have all of the pieces and I now need to work methodically through the pattern. I can then work out where I may have gone wrong and what extra fabric, if any, I need to order due to my mistakes.

I have made a nervous start quilting my tattoo quilt but I am only doing a little a day which could mea I don't finish it this month. Focus is what I need.

Monday, January 18, 2021

Monday make - zip around pouch


This finish is a bit of an embarrassment. I joined in virtual retreat in mid September #sewingshindigretreat2020 and one of the classes was to make the Zip around pouch - pattern by Bad Bananas available for purchase here with tips and tricks with Tori.

I didn't even have to quilt the fabric as I had some leftover from the All Aboard case I'd made for my daughter. Pattern by Annie Unrein. I bought that pattern from Sew Hot. I used the same zipper tape too. It has sat on my window sill waiting for the binding to be finished since September. It's not like I have left the house much in the intervening three months!! So in anticipation of Lizzie leaving yesterday I decided to just finish it and it had now been gifted. Not a pattern I'll probably make again, too fiddly but cute.

Friday, January 15, 2021

Friday freebie - Lady Skellington


A friend sent me a link to this free pattern from Freespirit made using Tula Pink fabrics. Available here. Knowing that I had Accuquilt dies that could be adapted for this project as well as the Linework fabrics which I have been using for my Tattoo Quilt, I forwarded the link to my skull obsessed daughter. The following day she was pulling out all of my black, grey and white scraps of fabric (which are still on my workroom floor). I don't buy a lot of yardage so we were short of fabrics for a background, so Lizzie decided she'd dye her own background in a brilliant red.

Being impatient (no idea where that trait comes from. :) ) she cut the shapes without bondaweb and stuck them down with Elmers glue. She is now quilting the whole top on my long arm and going three times around all of the applique shapes, which really makes them pop. 

Watch this space as Lizzie is returning to Aberdeen University on Sunday (not Tuesday as she thought) so she has several projects to complete in the next two days.

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Wednesday WIP - January goals

The UFO chosen for our guild challenge for January was of course the project with the most work that needed doing. My tattoo quilt. I have now finished the central block which I shared on Monday and am ready to piece it together. Fortunately my daughter has decided to go with the option of no extra borders so it will soon be ready to quilt.

I also have two January themed Cross stitch pieces I’d like to finish this month. This is the first - January cottage by Country Cottage Needlework’s. Progress is good but it is mostly white snowflakes which need to be stitched now and I am not keen on stitching white.

I also signed up for a foundation pieced block of the month called “around the world” designed by Whole Circle Studios. Month one was Cairo and a straight forward stitch. I am using the bone background from my tattoo quilt which I didn’t use and the other plains are from stash.  I visited Egypt with the children about ten years ago and my overriding memories of the pyramids was the hawker who wouldn't give me change back. we probably got picked out as we had no man with us. That experience demonstrated that there was no point making eye contact with the vendors and we enjoyed the sights instead. My other mistake was not taking a swimming costume with me and the children's highlight was the swimming pool at the hotel in Luxor. we also went up in a hot air balloon which was another bucket list item.

How are your January stitching plans coming along as we near the middle of the month?