Welcome to my blog about my quilting journey! I started quilting in 2006 with a quilt of my own design which started as a cushion cover and ended up as a single bed sized quilt! Now I'm totally hooked....maybe obsessed is a better word for it.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Seeing Stars!

I've been working on the Solstice Stars and stars from the Summer Sampler Series posted on Fresh Lemons Quilts blog. Today I finished this Rocky Road to Kansas block from the Summer Sampler Series. I'm pretty happy with how it turned out. I could have been a little more accurate on the centre seams I guess!

These are all the blocks I've done so far:

They are (clockwise from top left) Rocky Road to Kansas, Another Star, Ribbon Star and Whirling Star. I'm pretty happy with the way these are going together. That has been my plan from the start as I've been using some of my favourite fabrics so this one is a keeper!

Today I was also cutting up fabrics for an upcoming weekend away sewing with some other like minded ladies next weekend at Wallaroo here in South Australia. Its an opportunity for a weekend by the seaside, sewing all day and I'm guessing drinking too many cups of coffee! I have loose plans for several more star blocks, a bag or two and if I can't get onto my machine for whatever reason I'm taking my handpiecing project as well. That should keep me out of mischief for the weekend!

I'll make sure I post some photos when I get back!

Thanks for dropping by!

Monday, 20 February 2012

Block Swap for February Received!

I received my February block from Beth in Queensland today. I love squishy envelopes! Beth sent me this lovely block. I asked for any block in red, black and white and this ticks all the boxes.  Its "A Dandy" block- at least that's what its called on the pattern which Beth was kind enough to include in my parcel. I hadn't seen this block before so its great to have the pattern. I have 3 blocks now in these colours, I'll post a photo when I get one more I think!

Saturday, 18 February 2012

February Quilting Block Swap Australia Sent

Well now that I know that Beth in Qld has received her block I can share a photo of it here! She was after a Friendship Star in any colour on white. I was worried Beth might not like the unusual fabric I chose but she tells me she has already cut out other stars to put with it in co-ordinating colours.

Apparently mine is in the post so looking forward to a nice squishy envelope next week! I'll post a photo once I get it.

Friday, 17 February 2012

Scrappy Quilt Sandwich Nightmare!

This week I managed to get this quilt sandwiched together despite my best efforts! Clearly Wednesday was not my day! More on that later!

This quilt is one that my mother-in-law Betty gave me and asked me to quilt for her. She didn't make it but was given it by someone who suggested she 'cut it up and make bags out of it'. Fortunately she decided it was too nice to do that to!

It is the first quilt I have quilted that I haven't made so the sandwiching process was interesting as the more closely I looked at the quilt, the more I saw! I also saw possible issues for quilting but I'll deal with them when I come to them. It looks to have been made using all types of fabrics which may have been taken from recycled clothing. Some look like school shirts, there are some cute little fussy cut koalas and lots of nice bits and pieces.  I particularly like the one with all the blues in it.  It wasn't until I took a photo of the quilt that I noticed that different blocks looked a different shape due to the way the fabrics were put together. Some look like crosses and others stars. Interesting!

I got it all layed out on my outside picnic table with a trestle next to it. I stretched out the backing, layed over the wadding, spread out the quilt top and then decided I needed to move the wadding over a bit to make sure the whole quilt was covered. So I untaped the wadding, wiggled it over and flattened it out again. All good. I layed out the quilt top again, happy I had it all under control now and started pinning. After I was all done and started to take the tape off around the edge I discovered to my joy that I had managed to move the wadding about 2 inches too far across and now the backing wasn't quite covering the top, AAARGH!  Being the lazy sort I was NOT going to pull out all those damn pins again so I cut off  some of the fabric from along another edge where there was extra and cut it in two lengthways and with the quilt still pinned together, added it to the backing. I'm not really very happy with the way its lying and not really happy about having a seam so close to one edge but its done!

I decided that after that effort I should avoid any further quilting that day for fear of dreadful results.  I did bravely try out a new recipe for dinner that night and while I liked it, it wasn't a real winner so I think I was just having an off day altogether.

I noticed that a couple of the corners of the quilt don't lay flat so I'm hoping I can sort that out in the quilting! I took a photo so I'd be able to compare and see how they come out.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

I've Missed My Machine!

Now that my wonderful machine is back I've been making up for lost time!  I got stuck into things and put together the backing for a quilt top my lovely mother-in-law Betty gave me and asked me to quilt for her. I had planned to put the sandwich together while my machine was in for service but, fool that I am, forgot that I needed to piece the backing first! Only when I was ironing the fabric did it occur to me that I should have done that before taking the machine in!  Still its done now and I will sandwich that job up on Wednesday on my day off.

Then I added a pieced border to another quilt I'm doing for a gift for someone who is having treatment for cancer. I also made a pieced backing for that as well as discovering I need to buy more wadding before I can finish that quilt off! (Sigh!)

Today after helping my son Simon (who want's to be a chef) to make a marinade for some pork ribs, helped my husband in a consultant capacity with a project in his bird aviary (as he can't seem to do these things without my input) and helped my older son Kieran to hang a large Chinese fan on the wall in his room I finally managed to get to the sewing machine. I don't know why these people can't leave me be, don't they know I need to be sewing! Anyway I made it to the machine after an early lunch!

I finished my second February Craftsy block which I'm quite happy with.  These are the 4 blocks I've done so far:

Then I started on my Solstice Stars blocks from Fresh Lemons Quilts Blog http://www.freshlemonsquilts.com/?page_id=1534  I've made two today, the Ribbon Star and Another Star. Its called Another Star I don't just mean I made another star! I'm really happy with the way they turned out too!  Not sure what my aim is with them but I'm making them in fabrics that I like so maybe I'll turn them into something for me! That would be a first!

Oh and the marinated ribs were just lovely! I love having tea cooked for me, I could get very used to that!

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, 10 February 2012

Hooray! My Machine has Returned!

Finally, after 3 weeks I got my trust sewing machine back after a service and a nice new foot pedal. What bliss to be able to sew again. Also good that the old girl didn't have anything wrong with her, what a star she is!

Anyway of course I had to get stuck straight in and test her out so I managed to put together a couple of blocks after tea last night. One for my Quilting Block Swap Australia partner for February which I mailed to Beth today. I'll post a photo once I know she's got it, don't want to spoil surprise. Then I made the first of my Craftsy blocks for February, which I was quite happy with too. Here it is:

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Sewing Withdrawal Symptoms!

When oh when will my sewing machine be back from the workshop?! I didn't realise how much I rely on my poor old girl (she's 21+). I rang on Monday and they say maybe Thursday.  I have so many projects all cut out ready to go, it will need another service when they are all done!

Still I feel so organised, I have cut up pieces for my block swap, three blocks I'm doing from the Solstic Stars on another blog, two blocks from the Craftsy BOM, two bags for Breast Cancer, a quilt backing and a border on two other quilts and picked out some fabric to make a tote bag on my upcoming sewing weekend at Wallaroo in March. Definitely getting twitchy fingers.

I'm handsewing another project but these other projects are calling me and I can't wait to get stuck into them - come back soon Janome!

Thursday, 2 February 2012

My Quilting Journey 8 - Fortune Dragon Quilt

After a very long process I have finally finished this quilt for my oldest son, Kieran. While I actually started sewing the quilt in March 2010 I have been planning for it for much, much longer. Buying dragon related fabrics, or fabrics that might work, looking for the right dragon applique, design ideas, etc etc. I finally found the lovely dragon appliqued in the middle at Smee Designs http://smeedesigns.com/content/good-luck-dragon. It was quite difficult finding a dragon which wasn't too juvenile. I enlarged it to double size as this is a queen size quilt.  As the dragon is Chinese the quilt then moved onto being a Chinese themed quilt. I then did lots of research into Chinese symbols etc. During this time we had a family holiday in Bendigo and visited a Chinese museum which gave me many ideas. I also found some great fabric at Stawell which I used as background for the dragon.

I had some difficulty finding Chinese themed fabrics rather than Japanese, which most seem to be. I did find a great piece of dragon fabric from Logan Patchwork which pushed the colour scheme in a different direction away from reds and golds into a more orange palette.

It took me until June 2011 to finish the quilt top and Kieran contributed the design of the clouds around the dragon. The quilting then took me until January 2012 due to some delays caused by having to empty our entire house of furniture when we had all the floor coverings replaced. No-one was happier than me to get the binding and label on and get the quilt onto Kieran's bed!  I love the result though and so does Kieran so it was worth all the work!

Here's a photo of the label and also the meanings of the 4 symbols in the corners - not to mention the fabric I used on the back!

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

I Miss My Sewing Machine!

Okay, its been two weeks now and I'm having serious withdrawal symptoms. My lovely 21 year old Janome has gone to the doctors for a service and a new foot pedal and I'm starting to get a bit twitchy. At first it was okay as I had just finished a quilt and had the binding to finish hand sewing and a label to make and sew on but now its done and I'm wanting to start my February blocks for the Block Swap and a couple of Block of the Months. So today I spent the day getting all my pieces cut out and organised into separate little see through folders with the instructions for each block. I feel so organised now (as long as I don't look at the mess on my coffee table anyway!)

Sigh! Hopefully it will be back by next week!