Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Half-Hearted Mini – A Finish!

Finally, I can show you the mini I made for the Modern Quilt Guild mini swap. Gorgeous isn’t it? Did I want to keep it? You bet!

This was my first ever swap and while I was expecting it to be a challenge to pick a project it was made doubly difficult by anxiety and nervousness. My partner, Deb from Brisbane (@sewologist) listed as her likes Liberty, linen and Bonnie & Camille fabrics and her favourite designers as being Sedef Imer and Amy Sinibaldi amongst others. My first thought was for Amy’s half-hearted pattern (it’s free!) but of course, I went looking for other options before finally arriving back at my original pick.

I downsized the original pattern, picked out all my best pink fabrics, and sewed it up.
The finished size of this quilt is around 23 x 25 inches (from memory) and is quilted using a serpentine stitch.

Luckily Deb says she loves it, so I’m relieved and happy to have been part of it.
This is one of my Finish-Along projects so I will be linking this post up for that.

And while I’ve got your attention and you’re thinking about how much you’d like to join in the on-line quilting community here’s a reminder that the sign up for the 2017 New Quilt Bloggers hop is now open.

I was part of this group last year and it was the best thing! I met some great ladies from all over the world who have been generous and supportive and who I now count as friends. There have been opportunities through it, the Bee Inspired group for one, and it was a real confidence builder for me.

If you meet the criteria and are still thinking about it make the move NOW! Sign-ups close on the 28th… read all about it here.

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

January Block Round-up

How’s the year going for you? Flying past? For me it seems like ages since it was New Year’s eve. Maybe because in Australia it’s the lazy hazy days of summer and life seems to become super laid back and slower between Christmas and Australia Day, which more or less marks the end of summer school holidays.

Anyway, over January I’ve been making lots of blocks and before February gets too long in the tooth and slips past here’s a quick round up of what’s been happening in my sewing room.

This is my strawberry block made for The Honeypot Bee being run by Molli Sparkles. My plan is to jump into this bee whenever the block grabs my attention. There’s an impressive list of queens coming up over the year – see the list here – so I fully expect to be making quite a few. I wasn’t expecting my attention to be grabbed so early in the piece, but Angie from Gnome Angel picked a great block and I couldn’t resist. Angie’s version is an upsized variation of this tutorial by Skyberries Handmade. I went for the original size of 7 ½" x 10 ½” with the modified stem which I ended up paper piecing.

My first bee blocks were comfortingly simple. Sharon from Yellow Cat Quilt Designs was queen for January in the Bee Inspired group and she chose the 6-inch size paper-pieced Split Hatchet block from 627 Handworks in bright colours with a low volume background. I had fabric spread around trialling different combinations for days, adding and subtracting from piles any time I walked past and in the end settled on these. The block itself was simple and quick.

I’m in Hive 1 of Stash Bee and Diana From Red Delicious Life is Hive Mama, Stash Bee organiser for this year and was our queen for January. She is making a Disappearing 4 Patch quilt in purple and grey for her sister-in-law. She gave good instructions in her tutorial and I didn’t get a wobbly ruler in the crucial cutting phase, which I was really afraid of. I’ll admit here, just between us, that it was my second take on this block. Diana requested that we use a full ¼ inch seam rather than scant and I over-compensated the first time round and I made a block that was too under-sized. I’m using that on the back of a mini I’m quilting at the moment.

And these are my Garden Snails Quilt blocks (pattern by Pen + Paper Patterns). Sunday is #snailday on Instagram and we are up to week 5 in the Snail-paced Slow-Along Sew-Along. I missed the first week because I didn’t read the instructions properly (or maybe at all, now I come to think about it) so I’ve only posted 4, which is okay since I’m not making the full army of 42 anyway.

And lastly, my design challenge for the Mighty Lucky Quilting Club. I was in this club last year and I used the monthly challenges as design prompts without making the monthly quilt. This year they’ve introduced varying levels of time commitment to the challenges and this month’s was purely design based with no finished quilt project required. Do-able! January's instructor was Amy Friend of During Quiet Time and you can get some idea of the challenge here.  I went to the second level, level 1 being find inspiration in nature, architecture, signs and household items, level 2 being turn one into a quilt block. It’s amazing what you see when you start looking at things more closely.

I must have walked past these windows a million times going in and out of the library next door without ever noticing how different and amazing they were, but they grabbed my attention immediately once I started looking. I could see an improv curve slashing through the mid blocks straight away. And this is the block I designed.

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

12 ½ Inch Inside Addition Block Tutorial

This post was originally written for the BeeInspired group – it’s the block I’ve requested the girls make for me this month. I thought I’d share it here as well.

The original block by Jessica (@alittlegressica) is designed at 8" unfinished. Upsizing it is fairly simple. Here’s what you will need

4 HST units with an unfinished size of 5 ½̎  using background and feature fabrics
(I’m not including cutting measurements or sewing techniques here. I know everyone has their own favourite HST method. I like to make mine oversized and trim. Links to resources are included at the bottom of the post);
4 x 3" squares background fabric
2 x 3" squares feature fabric

1 x  3" x 8" strip feature fabric

Sew 2 background squares to either end of the feature fabric strip and sew two feature fabric squares to one background fabric square each; sew the HST units to the 2 square units; then the two sewn sections to the centre strip and admire! (That’s black arrow, then green arrow, then red

As promised, here are some links:
Blossom Heart Quilts triangle tutorials (with the maths!)

See the work of others using this block:
on Instagram
No Hats in the House
Carla at Grace and Favour
Debbie at A Quilter’s Table