Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Optical Illusion, the next stage

Well more of my stripy fabric arrived and I am so excited.  
Optical Illusion is now a single bed size piece of patchwork (un-quilted at this time)
 I LOVE it.  It came together easily and is quite a versatile quilt.
My hubby is pretty impressed by it too.

Now just Quilt & Bind.  (Three little words with SOOOOO much meaning.)

An unidentified UFO and an OPAM

Imagine my surprise last week when believing I knew all about my UFOs that I found another one, in plain sight, right under my nose.

This "SNOWBALL I SPY" quilt was being used as a cover in my craft room.  I look at it almost every day & therefore I don't 'see' it.  The poor quilt hadn't been bound - Oh shock and horror.
 So after a quick whizz around the edge, it is now FINISHED and UFO no more. 
It is probably one of my worst sewing and definitely worst quilting jobs, but it is bright and full of fun things to find.

Here are a couple of close ups of some of the fabrics - snowmen, butterflies, smiling cabbage flowers, Amish carts.
 teddy bears, hula babies, kitchen dishes, leaves.
You get the idea.  The humble snowball block. What a great 'frame' it provides for the feature fabric.

Now as I have no small children to play on the quilt, TJ Bear decided he would hunt for I Spy things.

Oh Yeah, this means I have completed another OPAM.  YEAH!!!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Another UFO has vanished & become a "Care Quilt"

Yes, you read correctly, I have 'vanished' another UFO from my list.

I made this tumbler quilt is for the "Care Quilt" stash that my patchwork group (Roma Patchwork & Crafters Inc) are trying to make in anticipation of need in our community.  
When our town flooded in 2010 and 2011 we were really caught unprepared to assist, so we decided to get ourselves organised and ensure we can assist in some way for the next tragedy. (Which unfortunately will occur, as they always do).

This "Tumbler Stripes" quilt was made using the Accuquilt "Tumbler" block, some great neutral backing fabric and ricrac.
 A close up of where the 'stripes' meet.
I am really taken with this quilt.  It is quite feminine and soft.  I am sure when the time comes, there will be a lady who loves it.

The photo below is the first "Care Quilt" given away by the Club. Made by one of our other members Bev,  it is also a tumbler design but using scrappy fabrics.  It was donated to an auction to raise funds for one of the local nursing homes.  It sold for $260 at auction.  The club are glad it could assist in this way.

Hopefully our "Care Quilts" will provide comfort wherever they are sent.

Please keep the East Coast of USA in your prayers.  Some of the ladies who I am blogging friends with are in the path of hurricane Irene.  As we know, all natural disasters are unpredictable and hopefully Irene will pass with minimal loss of life.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Bindi's 21st Birthday Quilt

As you may recall from my last post, I mentioned a certain 21st birthday quilt that had been the jumping point for my Optical Illusion Quilt.

Well the postman delivered the quilt to Bindi today, so I can reveal it now.
 After much fabric shuffling and changing I decided to just go with the geometric print and selection of lovely teal fabrics from my stash and stitched them together in my favourite "Shaggy Quilt" Style.  

All of the blocks are backed in the great geometric rose print.  It gives a BOLD front & a soft back.
 It is a little hard to see, but each teal block is quilted with a specific word or design.  This block says BINDI, others say 21st, BTH (her initials), love hearts and barbed wire.
I just realised that I didn't photograph the quilt flat, so you will just have to believe me when I say it looked good.

I bound this shaggy quilt to help reduce moulting from the edges.  The binding is the spot/circle/egg shaped print that you can see here.

  I hope Bindi Likes it and I hope it receives lots of use.
Happy Birthday 21st Bindi.

Monday, August 22, 2011

An Accidental Quilt

I had these 4 fabrics in my home to make a quilt for a friend's 21st birthday.

The quilt was going to be a modern & funky 21 year old friendly design.  The fabrics were going to go together beautifully as they are from the same range. (Another Iota for Robert Kaufmann Fabrics)  It was going to be perfect.  
(Photo from Cow Paddocks and Craft)


When I cut the fabrics and started placing them they just SCREAMED at each other.  
I was disappointed.  
I was angry.  
I was frustrated.  
The quilt would not be perfect.  
The quilt would be lucky to be finished.  
I Took the stripe fabric and threw it across the room, it was rejected from the 21st Quilt.

 Later when passing the pile of 'striped rejects' I realised they had fallen onto each other on the diagonal (no photograph - just go with me). 
I was surprised.
I was intrigued.
  I looked closer
.  I consciously folded the fabrics into 1/4 square triangles.  
I could see a pattern emerging, so I cut.
 And I sewed like a woman possessed.  
The 'vertical stripes' joined themselves into Cross blocks and the 'horizontal' stripes joined themselves into boxes.    
I loved it and I couldn't stop.  
I cut and sewed until I ran out of material .
 I have made  "Optical Illusion".

  Oh the rejects have become the favourite quilt.
I love this so much, I purchased the remaining fabric off the bolt to make more squares and make a bigger quilt.   My 'appreciation' of stripes is increasing and maybe I might even consciously go shopping for stripes, 'cause this is an awesomely easy and effective quilt.

And yes, I did finish the 21st quilt but I can't show you as she may not have received it yet.  The birthday is today, it just depends if Australia Post were on my schedule or not.

Can't wait for my fabric to arrive.  Do you ever have one of those moments?  It is good to be excited about a quilt design.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

My boys have been up to 'secret' business

I was so very excited on Sunday when my hubby took the boys outside to do some 'bloke' craft.  

I am not permitted to say what they were making as it is a "secret" but they were so proud of their efforts and have be asking to go & do some more.
The hammered, scratched, banged, polished, got excited, got upset, told each other what to do, listened very attentively to Daddy's instructions (for the 1st minute) and all in all had a good time.
I will reveal the finishes when I am given permission.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

2 Finishes and birthday pressies

I have this morning completed these 2 lovelies.

They were made from the leftovers & off cuts from my Vines in the Garden quilt using Nature's Notebook by April Cornell for Moda.  I think they look nice and fresh with their 'damask' table cloth for the white.
 This one is braids or plaits.
 And this is pieced bits.  The offcuts of braids and tiny left overs.
They are both destined for new homes as Birthday presents.  (I did think about giving one to Hubby for his birthday next week just so I could keep it in my house.) I hope their new owners like them as much as I do.

Those of you who read the blog regularly must be wondering why I have so many finishes in a short time?  That is because I cleaned up.  It is amazing I re-arranged my sewing space and put all the UFOs in one place.  I then made myself look at them to determine what I had to do to finish, I wrote a list.  Chose a couple to finish (the easy ones) and got to it.  The others are away in a box (not too well hidden) and as I finish one I take another out of the box.  The list is quite liberating - I know strange.

"Springtime" Stitcheries Complete

Well, now.  Let me introduce you to blocks 8 & 9 of "Springtime".

I am very excited all my stitcheries are done for this quilt.  Now I get to start playing with the piecing and hopefully a finish won't be too far away.

This is block 8 "In A Twirl" (sitiched backwards by me) designed by Vicki Tueck of  The Pickledish Patch (formerly Tozz's Corner)  this cute twirl has a spider's web and spider hanging out in it.
 And block 9 is "Spring Has Sprung" by Fiona Ransley of Designs by Fee (formerly Mother's Cupboard).  I love the little rabbit in the front of this design.

 Now that is 9 stitcheries and 9 verses complete and one lovely label sent to me to put on the back of the quilt.  Now I just have to do that piecing.

I am really liking this quilt.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Block Buster Weekend and a new Bag

This weekend saw my patchwork group host .....
(ignore the fuzzy bit, that is to protect personal details)

 the purpose of Blockbuster weekend is to finish something you didn't finish at a workshop, or make some progress on something that has you stumped.

Now only 4 ladies took advantage of this opportunity but check out what they made.

Colleen's Circle - (yet to decide what it will become)

 Gayle's bargello is joined up ready for borders
 Cecily completing an inherited UFO - lovely isn't it (and you can't see in the picture but the flowers are 3D)
Collen & I made a bag (yes Colleen was very busy)
and a shot of my bag in its beautiful glory.  I love the fabric, it is Divine.  It is a pre-quilted fabric and I love it.  The pattern is so rich.  I feel really flash with my special bag.
And I discovered when I packed up to come home from the weekend, it holds heaps of quilting supplies, so not just an overnight bag.

Unfortunately due to some technical difficulties with my ability to measure correctly, my bag took way longer than expected and I had to spend some intense time with my quick unpick.  This meant that I did not achieve any of the other projects on the list, but I had some great fellowship and laughs with other ladies.

Christmas in AUGUST??

Christmas has come to my house in AUGUST.  Yes, I completed another UFO off the list.

This table cloth had 1 name waiting to be embroidered from Christmas 2010 and it was a UFO.  Just one short stint of stitching in front of the TV and it is done.
Ah what a good feeling
This cloth has a story.  

It was my Nanna & Poppa's table cloth & we had Christmas at their house almost every year until I was about 18.  This cloth was on the "BIG" table (or the adults' table) and being the 2nd youngest I was never old enough to move to the "BIG" table.  By the time I could move up the table wasn't big enough and they added another "BIG" table so we could all be there together.  

Nanna cleaned out her Christmas things about 10 years ago and thought I would like the cloth & napkins as I LOVE Christmas.  (And I don't mean that lightly - Christmas is the best time of year - truly)

The cloth has lived in our house ever since and I decided when we host Christmas our guests will sign & date the cloth as a memento of their visit.  Now in 10 years of marriage, I have had Christmas of some variety at my house 4 times.  Each year is stitched in a different colour and all guests regardless of age are represented on the cloth.  The names go around the centre design and hopefully will fill the white border over time.
I love that is has captured my children when they were 'little' as they sure don't stay that way for long.
I love that it is a 'tradition' that my family unit has created.

Monday, August 1, 2011

New inspiration on the shelf

The inspiration shelf has had another change of  face.

It is now housing 'memories of another time'.  These items are all from my Nanna's house.  She passed away in March and some of the treasures and memories from her house have come to live with me.

Some of these pieces have really special meaning, some are just old and some are quirky.  

The "Goodies" Jar that I loved as a kid (or maybe it was the peppermints that lived inside the jar).

The Biscuit and Cake tins always held delights if we asked.

Poppa's shell collection.  He has some great ones and they still sound like the ocean.

Take time to reflect on these treasures from a time gone by and remember. 

A 4th OPAM for July

Well these pillow cases have been stitched and waiting to be finished for about 9 months (or so I am guessing).  So on the weekend I whipped out the ric- rac and got stitching. 

 I think they are kind of cute, but not really my colours so they will find a home in the gift box.
 I stitched the violets in a variegated thread so they are all different from each other.
It is a good feeling to complete a UFO.
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