Monday, 6 April 2020

Entertain yourself in Lockdown

Do you want to while away the hours at home, but don't have any fancy gear? You can't go out to the fabric store as it is not an essential activity, so can we just make do with what we have?

I thought a hexagon quilt might be easy to make from what you have around home. If you have some old shirts that you can upcycle, that is all you need. It doesn't have to be shirts, but any fine weave cotton will be fine.
A few hexagons to start with, all these are cut from my husband's old shirts, my favourite is the splotchy liberty print on the bottom right. At least 2 of the others were from shirts we had made while we were in Vietnam

You don't need a sewing machine as we  will use English paper piecing and then the hexagons together by hand. The trickiest part is making the templates, but I found a video online to assist with that.

This is what you will need:
  • old cotton shirts, men's work shirts are ideal
  •  a drawing compass,
  • a ruler or tape measure,
  •  some stiff cardboard
  • some thin card or heavy paper
  • glue stick
  • scissors (and a rotary cutter if you have one)
  • needle
  • thread
Here is a link to the hexagon tutorial if you want to have a go.

Saturday, 28 March 2020

Lockdown - an excuse to quilt

In Australia, we are not in total lockdown, except if you have just arrived in the country or have landed from a cruise ship. However, everyone is being as careful as they can and not go out. So.….

What do we do? WE QUILT!!!!

I really wanted to finish a rainbow pinwheel quilt, but since the move I haven't been able to find it, so I had to start something new (to tell the truth I have started 3 new things, but we will get to that later.
Bright colours with little houses one patch modern quilt
Although I have loads of fabrics, I wanted to start with my scraps as they were overflowing out of the tidy scrap drawers that I had stored them in. I try to cut any scraps into 2 1/2" strips, so that I can easily make things from them.

I pinned a quilt using Pinterest with little houses on it, and thought it was cute.It was a one patch quilt with the houses interlocking, upside down and right side up. The ones that I saw were in low volume fabrics, but I think it would work better in bright colours. I like making cot quilts, they make nice gifts and don't take too long to make.

I didn't have a pattern, this means that I have to make one.  It is really easy, I will include a tutorial on how to draw up a template for the single house patch.

Let me know what you think of my first row of little houses.

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

New Fabrics

A lovely parcel arrived from the courier today. My stash builder pack from Pink Castle Fabrics. It is lucky that I get the parcels at all as the courier driver is terrified of the dog. As he rings the doorbell, our fat old golden labrador takes on a much younger and meaner persona, by barking in a deep angry bark and frightens the life out of Manu the Pakistani driver. He hurls the parcel at the front porch and then takes off back to his van as fast as he can. We have tried to tell him that the dog is 90 in dog years, and a complete pussy, but it makes no difference.
Anyway I got my parcel, it was full of lovely aqua fabrics. I only just joined this group, and seem to have an obsession with this blue green colour as my stash collection is at least 1/4 of this colour.
I have a queen quilt on the go for my bed, but I keep thinking of other things to make as well. 

That is the affliction of a compulsive quilter.

Finished Orange Lemon Lime Drunkards Path

I completed the OLL quilt over the weekend, but have been too busy in the garden to show you pictures. This quilt was great to make as it came together quickly, as the drunkard's path piece was easy to piece, then combined to make nice large blocks.

As I did the quilting as you go method too, the quilting was simple and was not bulky under the arm of the machine. This was enjoyable. My Bento Box quilt is pieced but I can't seem to get around to quilting that one, as the thought of moving the queen quilt under the machine is enough to put me off.

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Road testing Orange Lemon and Lime Drunkards Path

The orange, lemon and lime quilt is almost done, but first it has to be road the cat. She doesn't look happy here.
I don't have a design wall, I have a design bed, which is why Zali the cat loves it so much.  I tried to make it so that the bright orange quarter circles were distributed evenly, and the greys, where they meet are all different pattern. I nearly succeeded. There is one spot where there are the same pattern, but I'm not going to tell you where.
This quilt is even too big to lie flat on this bed. That is why I have used a QAYG method and  quilted the spirals separately. See my QAYG tutorial here.  I think it is a good trade off, as the back is not as perfect as I would like.

Monday, 23 September 2013

First Swim of the Season

Today we had our first swim of the season. It is early spring here, but the weather is warm, it is 28 degrees and sunny. Perfect beach weather. We only live 500m from the beach, 100m above it. With the ocean only at the bottom of the hill, there is really no excuse not to swim. We were pretty warm by the time we got to the beach, we stripped off and stood with our waves lapping our toes. My husband, went in first, he called me from beyond the breakers, "Come on in, it's fine", so trusting him, I waded out, it was cold, but I thought it was the temperature differential. I dived under, my breath was taken away, it was cold! I came out of the water with a shocked look on my face. "I lied", he laughed. I laughed too, it was wonderful, it makes me feel alive. We should all count our blessings every day.

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Orange Lemon and Lime Progress

I have now pieced all the drunkards path squares for the quilt. Each drunkard path square is 8 1/2. inches, then 4 of these are sewn together to form a big circle, 17 inches square.

The quilt is 5 x 5 big circles, making it big enough for a queen bed. Because it is this big, I. Have chosen to quilt the squares as I go. This means I cut a piece of backing, a bit bigger say 1/2 inch larger than the 17 inch square. I cut some batting the same size. Then I pin the sandwich together.

This size piece is really easy to quilt on the machine, as you don't have to manipulate the whole quilt around the machine.  I have chosen a simple spiral, starting in the centre. I use the darning foot, with the stitch length turned to 0. I have to change the tension to make the stitches correct. It isn't perfect, but I am getting better.

After this is done, I get two squares, trim the wadding, pin them together, and stitch just through the top layer and the wadding.

On the back I hand stitch the backing together.  Easy peasy.