Friday, 28 February 2014

This Moment

Here's a link to Soulemama's moment and here's mine...

{this moment}
A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Patchwork Cushions, Take 3

The cushion making spree has continued today. I was very good and finished off my 2 cushion fronts from the last couple of days (here and here). Sunshine cushion first:

I decided I would add a blue border, and I'm happy I did, but it has now made it quite a large cushion!

Next up my strippy patchwork one:

I did them both with 'envelope' backs, which is by far my favourite way to go, fiddling around with zips really doesn't appeal to me. And then I just about had time to move on to another cushion front.

This one is in denim (old pair of jeans cut up!). I machine embroidered a simple daisy:

And then built it up with an off centre log cabin. The lighter fabric is just the 'wrong' side of the denim, which was a very easy way of varying the colour.

All these cushions are destined for a local fundraising event coming up in May, which two of my very good friends are organising. You might remember it from last year as well - back here. It will be a cake making competition (the 'Bake Off'), and once the cakes have been judged we'll eat them all, and there'll be lots of handmade items for sale as well. So I'm trying to be organised this year and get some making done for it in plenty of time. And if anyone has any amazing cake recipe that is sure to wow the judges, please tell me about it - because I want to win this year!

I'm linking up with 2 other blogs today, the lovely My Quilt Infatuation for Needle and Thread Thursday as I've done for the last couple of weeks, and also Amy's Creative Side, where there's a 'Pillow Collective' going on, so if you'd like a few more ideas on pillows (cushions to me here in England!), head on over there.

I'll be back tomorrow with my 'moment' of the week in a photo,


Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Sunshine Cushion

I got my 4 squares from yesterday sewn together to make the front of my cushion cover today...

But instead of then finishing the whole cushion off with a back, I decided I'd start another cushion front instead!  Cushion fronts are much more interesting!

This new one was to be based on my Sunshine Quilt

I think I probably talked through the process of making it in my original post, but since I took quite a few photos as I made it today too, I'll show you them and try and explain as I go.

I started with a squareish scrap of blanket...

 And sewed down my first 'ray' shaped scrap of fabric...

Then right sides together I sewed on the 2nd piece, covering one of my raw edges...

Ironed it back over...

And then sewed it down...

I carried on like this till I'd gone around the whole of my blanket square. My last 'ray', in the picture below, is the brightest yellow ray, one edge is sewn down as above and the final edge is loose still in this photo.

With this last edge I just ironed under a narrow hem first ...

And then sewed this down, covering my very first raw edge from my very first 'ray' that was still showing.

So now here's what it looks like...

All ready for the round sun in the centre of the rays...

I sewed this on with a tight zig zag all the way around the edge, and then quilted a spiral inside it...

Here it is all trimmed up...

I'm planning on putting a sky blue back on this cushion, but I haven't quite decided whether or not to put a thin blue border around the front first too. In my original Sunshine Quilt, I loved how the blue binding worked and I think I'm probably inclined to put a blue border around this to get the same effect..

I was planning on explaining why I'm on a cushion making spree today, but somehow it seems to be extremely late again (how does this always happen?) so I'll leave that to another tomorrow. I am going to link up with WIP Wednesday over at Freshly Pieced and I'll be back again tomorrow,


Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Patchwork Cushion

My 'quick' make today has been a cushion cover. Although it hasn't been quite as quick as I'd have liked and it isn't completely finished yet! I started out with lots of scraps from various, previous makes.

Quite a few of these were already cut into strips, which was what I wanted. I'd decided to make a cushion along the same lines as the picnic quilt I made for Maria in the Summer. There's a bit more of an explanation with a link back on that post, but here are a few photos along the way today...

It's a quilt as you go kind of make so I started out with 4 squares of an old wool blanket, like this...

Now start sewing on the strips, right sides together then ironing them back over, and each strip covers the previous raw edge.

With as many quilting lines as you feel like along the way, until you've covered your square.

I got my 4 squares finished but haven't managed to sew them together yet.

And then I need to sort out a back to turn it into a cushion. I've got plans for a few more cushions over the next week, but I'll tell you why tomorrow, right now I need some sleep.


Monday, 24 February 2014

Bird Brooch and Hamper

We've been away for our late 'Christmas' this weekend. It was lovely to get away and see family we don't get to see too often. And then it was lovely to come home! I completely forgot to photograph the quilt that was delivered so I can't show it to you - but it really didn't look too different to photos of it in bits! I did take a photo of another present, and, since today has been spent unpacking and washing mountains of clothes and generally trying to sort out a bit of last week's mess, that's all I'm going to show you today! It's a slight variation on a present idea I shared with you before Christmas - the Wild Bird Food Hamper. But this time I made a simple fabric bird brooch to go with it too.

Just a simple bird shape with a few layers (wool blanket scraps), a nice piece of wool for backing, beak and wing and then lots of stitching to hold it together and give it a bit of strength. Last of all, a button eye and sew on a brooch back. It just seemed to add the perfect touch to the bird hamper.

The girls both loved the idea of a fabric brooch so I think it's something I could be doing a few more of in the near future. Which sounds good to me, I feel in the mood for making small, quick things at the moment.

See you tomorrow, Sally.

Friday, 21 February 2014

This Moment

Here's a link to Soulemama and I'm afraid I'm throwing out the rule book completely today. We had such a lovely day to remember yesterday, quite mild with lots of sunshine, and we spent it in the woods and the garden, enjoying the fresh air with a camp fire. I had my camera out with me and there isn't any one photo that captures the day I want to remember - there are loads of photos! It feels like it's been a very long, wet Winter, and I'm sure there's more of it still to come. There have been times when it's been hard to believe that Spring and Summer moments would return, and yesterday was just what we needed to remind us that of course they will! We just need to be a bit more patient! And remembering yesterday will help me to be. So here are loads of photos of  my day to remember!

{this moment}
A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.
. . . . . . . . . .

Off to collect wood for the camp fire



And they were delicious!

On to the marshmallow course.

Too close...

And it burnt!

Just as we were packing up, a shower blew over and left us one last gift from the day...

It was a perfect end to a lovely day.

I'll be back again on Monday, wishing you all sunshine, and maybe a rainbow or two, for the weekend.


Thursday, 20 February 2014

A finished quilt and some sunshine

We had some sunshine today, hurray! As well as getting outside to play and have fun, it meant I did get to photograph my finished quilt. Here it is:

Started way back here

I quilted it with 6 biggish spirals starting at each of my middle joins. You can see them a bit more clearly on this next photo, although you can also see all the creases that I obviously didn't iron out well enough!

And I went with the black and white spotty fabric for the binding...

It didn't have as much impact as I'd thought it might, I think perhaps I should have made it a little wider, but then again I quite like that it doesn't distract too much from the simple and fresh yellow/white colours.

I'm linking up with Needle and Thread Thursday over on 'My Quilt Infatuation' today, and I'll be back tomorrow with a photo.


Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Greek Quilting

Not a lot of posting so far this week I'm afraid, but I have been squeezing little bits of sewing in here and there when I get a chance. I've been binding this quilt:

Which is now in the wash. If we get a dry day tomorrow hopefully I might get it photographed. But I'm also desperately trying to get this quilt finished:

It's not the most exciting of quilts so I wanted to do some interesting quilting to liven it up a bit. The best place I know to look for ideas on quilting is a blog called The Inbox Jaunt, written by an amazingly talented quilter called Lori. Every Tuesday she writes a tutorial on a different design of quilting, and all these designs are available to look back over on her blog, so there's a wonderful selection to choose from. After a good browse, I found this one:

The square, spiral like pattern was the one that jumped out at me, particularly because it was called 'The Greek Key' and this quilt is heading to the Greek side of our family. Perfect!

Now Lori frequently stresses that it's perfectly possible to quilt a large quilt on an ordinary, domestic machine, and still make it beautiful and detailed. Plenty of her quilts prove this, but, since I have a little less confidence in my quilting abilities, I decided I'd quilt this one in pieces before sewing it all together! And I'm very glad I did. The quilting part is rarely my favourite bit, too often it gets neglected in the rush to finish a quilt, and I think I would have really struggled to get to grips with this on the big, bulky whole quilt and might have just given up and gone for a few boring straight lines instead. As it is, it took me a couple of rows to get going properly, but now I'm managing it. A few of the 'keys' are still a little wonky - predictably!

But you know I'm quite happy with wonkiness! I was hoping to quilt each of my plain stripes in this way, but I'm running out of time (again predictably!) so it may end up with every other stripe. That's still looking good so far though.

I've been drawing a quick guide on for the first 'key' in each row and then I find I can manage the rest reasonably well.
The one thing I'm losing by going down more of a 'quilt as you go' route is obviously my lovely 'key' lines won't show on the back of the quilt. You can see them to the left in the photo above, on the old, wool blanket I'm using in the middle, and it is a shame that's not the back, but I think I can live with this downside for the sake of  not having to squeeze the whole quilt through my machine over and over.

I'm off to get a little more done now and I'm linking up, again, with WIP Wednesday (how did we get to Wednesday so fast?!) over on Freshly Pieced. Hopefully might be back tomorrow with my finished quilt, see you then,