Sunday, 21 April 2013



...and this...

...arrived together from the Fat Quarter Shop.

When I saw them together I knew they would make a fabulous quilt.

So I got out my 60° ruler and made some triangles with an unfinished height of 5 1/2", added in a few more of my own text fabrics as well as some Kona Bone, et voila.

For the quilting I chose stitch number 138 on my Bernina, elongated it out as far as it would go and then randomly quilted straight(ish) lines.

I like the effect it creates.

On the back, I tried to use up every last scrap of the off cuts and pieced them into the Kona Bone background.

And the binding. 
I could pretend I wanted to juxtapose the modern solids and urban text fabrics with the soft, floral binding thereby creating a dichotomy of polarising styles.

The truth is, it was the binding left over from this quilt

Linking to WIP Wednesday
I kind of thought it would go.

Friday, 19 April 2013

A winner and some Mermaid's Purses

 So getting down to business from the previous post. The winner of the Oakshott Cottons is

Which was:

I like that you won.
I am really sad about everything that has happened where you live.

I'll email you for your address.

Meanwhile, I've been in finishing up mode.

This quilt came about because I volunteered to pattern test for Helen, sister of Quick Curve Ruler maker, Jenny. It's one of those rulers that seems to produce endless design possibilities.

I finished the top end of September last year.

I'd used quite a bit of 100% linen (look on Ebay...there are always off-cuts knocking around) in the background squares and felt it might be a bit slippery to machine quilt it all. I was also looking for slow burn 'something to do in the evenings' project so I started hand-quilting all the background.

I like the texture it has given.

Once the quilt was secured with all the background quilting, I then took it to the sewing machine and FMQ'd in the little mermaid's purses shapes.

The binding was some Flea Market Fancy I had to hand which I thought would echo the one red block but also had the turquoise in from the rest of the quilt.
And the backing is just, well, backing really. 
Nothing special.
Just some fabric that wasn't quite big enough that I spliced and then added a bit more another one in.
When I do that, I always try to make sure that the second fabric is off-centre and not placed directly in the middle of the quilt back.
I think it looks more of a deliberate design choice rather than a 'I didn't have enough of the one fabric' situation.

Or so I like to pretend.

And that's it really.
Not quite...just realised I didn't FMQ that shape!

Linking up to Finish It Up Friday

Friday, 12 April 2013

Oakshott Cottons quilt and giveaway

The Giveaway is now closed thank you.

And I've finished my square Oakshott Cottons quilt.
I still think I prefer rectangular quilts but I do like this exception to my preference.

As others have already said, it is really quite hard to catch the iridescent glow that a lot of the shot cottons give off.

While thinner to work with than regular quilting weight cottons, if you handle them carefully, they are not difficult to work with. I didn't have to use any starch on them to get them to play nicely.

I also included a few Kaffe Fassett shot cottons in this quilt and if I were to compare the two, although the Kaffe Fassett shot cottons are not as expensive, I think I prefer the handle and glow that you get from the Oakshott shot cottons.

Quilting was just a simple grid system either side of the seams and then organic straight(ish) lines for the border.

The back is just some bits and bobs. The main piece of fabric I've had over 10 years...there was a time when paisleys were all the rage. I wonder if that makes the back of the quilt retro now?

I also manage to balls it up and cut too short on the width. After it was already quilted I added in a couple of extra inches (on the left) and I actually quite like the little injection of the secondary fabric in there. Well I would say that.

Note to self: pick all the threads off before you start taking close-ups.

Would you like to try some Oakshott cottons?

Michael at Oakshott Cottons has very kindly provided this:

A packet of eight fat eighths

To be in with a chance, leave a comment: What's the temperature where you are today? 
I'm slightly obsessed with the weather at the moment as we've had such a long and dreary winter

Leave a second comment if you are a follower: If you had to learn a second language (besides your mother tongue), what would it be?

I'll use Mr Random Generator thingy to pick a winner a week today - Friday 19 April  - and am happy to post anywhere in the world.

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Well what can I say?

I love it!

The whole quilt is made from just the one shape.

I've written about the process before; here (close ups of some of the blocks), here (where I asked for layout ideas and then ignored them all) and here (the quilt top all sewn together).

The original inspiration came from Material Obsession II - Jazz Hands.

Each piece was individually cut out (albeit through several layers at a time) and I tried to fussy cut some of the centre shapes.

I know you can EPP this and have seen it called Antique Star Rose on quilty blogland but I'm not a huge fan of EPP. I think it takes too long and I'm not sure why I would want to add more stages to the process (cutting/buying paper, tacking shape to paper, removing said paper) when you can (imo) achieve the same result just hand-sewing each individual piece together. I hugely admire EPP projects I have seen - they are just not for me.

As it was such a whopper of a quilt, I decided to hand-quilt inside all the little shapes and then machine FMQ around all the negative space.

And as the contrast between the low-volume background and the shapes and borders is so marked, I just grabbed any old scraps for the two dark borders so it was a fantastic scrap-buster. You don't need to ponder if a particular fabrics 'goes' with the others because it doesn't matter: you are cutting them quite small and as long as they provide enough contrast to the lights, they are fine, providing a nice homogenous mess.

Well what can I say?

I just totally love how one shape can create something so individual and scrappily delicious.

I do like a bit of portable hand-sewing to slowly do and this was most definitely it.

And now it's finished I've just discovered the next portable hand-quilting project :-)

Linking up to WIP Wednesday

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

A square quilt

I made a square quilt.

I didn't think I liked square quilts.

I just started cutting up 3 1/2 inch squares of Oakshott and Kaffe Fassett shot cottons with no particular plan in mind.

I added in various black and white prints.

I added a border of 2 1/2" squares.

And then I felt I was done.

I think I quite like square quilts now.

Linking up to WIP Wednesday  and Finish It Up Friday

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