Wednesday 11 December 2013

Crosses together.

They look better now they are stitched together!
This measures 30" long and 28" wide - strange how often my work comes out square, or nearly square in this case.
I'd like the next one to be much freer with narrow strips crossing squares and cut much more randomly, but it will be a while before I can tackle anything like that.
The design wall is coming down now as the house needs to be tidied up for Christmas.
Family are coming and the "sewing" room where all my boxes are stored has to reconvene as a bedroom.. A chance to sort out some of my fabric over the next few days.

Tuesday 10 December 2013

Interesting Wooden Objects

Some more of the interesting things made of wood at East Ruston Vicarage Garden:
 This is the table top of a rustic wooden table in a conservatory space. Wonderfully worn beach combings and such soft subtle colours. The table is below and had equally interesting legs!
Rustic table

Giant insect house?

And this fabulous stack of wood was huge, nicely roofed and possibly the most enormous insect, and toad, house I've ever seen!

Thursday 5 December 2013

Crosses quilt

I spent the day cutting lots more pieces for the Serpentine Curves blocks, but with each fabric I cut a 2 1/2" strip to make some more crosses. Eventually the crosses took over!
I made it about square by adding in some part blocks and this is how it finished up:
As the pieces are just laid on the design wall they look a bit wonky, but that is because the seam allowances get in the way, and of course I can't properly reach the ones on the top! Now to get it sewn together...

Wednesday 4 December 2013

New make.

Here's a picture of what I've been working on over the last couple of days. I found some plastic card holders in the Post Office in the village and thought that they would make good Christmas presents. My good friend Helen made me some great cards with ten different pictures of my quilts.

You need an embroidered or quilted panel to start with (this one given to me by my good friend Jackie), and then attach lining in two pieces leaving open where they would join. You turn through there and insert some card stiffeners, then slip the card holder in.
Card holder 1

Inside no.1
It is a tri-fold with a button and
hand-stitched loop fastener.

The next one is embroidered on some of my hand-dyed linen.

I think I'll make one that says
"I stitch therefore I am"!!

 And here are some of the Mini quilts we made as tree decorations, on display in the Church.
Winterton Quilters Christmas Tree

Tree with wobbly angel

Monday 2 December 2013

Serpentine Curves

Here is Ruth's quilt, she has said I can show it, it should help my thinking as to the direction I want mine to go in. I bought another piece of batik today to add some sparkle to my Serpentine Curves Quilt, or maybe just add to my boxful!
Meanderings, by Ruth

Meanderings is an apt name!
I've got a long way to go before mine is this big, but as before I love Ruth's colour combinations and unusual fabrics - lots of stripes in here.

I had an excellent day at April's house printing fabrics, a follow-up to last Wednesday when I went on a course  with Yvonne Brown, printing with thermofax screens. I used Decolourant discharge with screens for the first time and got some interesting results.
I'll add some pictures later.

Tuesday 26 November 2013

Crosses and Serpentine Curves

I've sewn the 16 Rattlesnake blocks together so the design wall is now housing my Serpentine Curves blocks - I want to look at them for a bit, and make some more before I decide how I want to set them.
Also I've added to the crosses...

Sunday 24 November 2013

Old Quilts and their Stories

The Quilters Guild had an Area Day in Swaffham Prior and Pat Lowe came from the Traditional group to share her passion for old quilts.

 This is probably a North Country quilt as the quilting travels across in lines. Difficult to photograph, the stitching made beautiful patterns across the surface, with large roundels and cross-hatching. It's an English quilt as the edges are turned in towards each other and stitched together with the quilting stitch.

 This is the back of the pink floral quilt below which Pat and a friend bought for £35 between them, the other share of which was then given to Pat as a hostess gift! The edge on the right has been bound much later to cover up wear, but is all part of the quilt's history. It was bought in Yorkshire, and at an exhibition there some time later, Pat and her friend saw its twin, unfortunately complete with rust marks from having been placed on top of the bed-springs to prevent wear on the mattress! The owner did not want to sell, and Pat did not want to part with hers, so they remain parted.

Pat showing the edge bound with more recent fabric.
"Bought on the knock" quilt
This is a Welsh quilt and belonged to a friend. Pat took it to a Guild day to try to find out more about it and discovered how much it was worth. Her friend was willing to sell but Pat had little cash so she paid for it over time. When she got it half paid she was allowed to take it home but continued to pay off small amounts till it was fully hers!
The fabric on the front of the quilt is red and is the same design in a different colourway to the reverse. The quilting is clearly Welsh in design and has a large leaf pattern repeated 4 times and beautiful double cross hatching across the centre.
Afterwards we were treated to the Traditional group Suitcase collection of small quilts on the theme of "Building Blocks" which provoked a lively discussion on what makes a traditional quilt as a few of them seemed quite contemporary to some of us.
My favourite was a clever little quilt of nine blocks where the central blocks were made from the two blocks on either side combined. A great idea and very well executed.
It's a good idea to get together with other groups in the area and hire the suitcase for a quilt group session as this spreads the cost.

Thursday 21 November 2013

Pineapple Quilt

Here is my Dark Pineapple quilt made with scraps following Gyleen Fitzgerald's instructions in her book Trash to Treasure.
Gyleen is going to link her Facebook page for these quilts to here.
She is currently producing a new book using diamond shapes.

Tuesday 19 November 2013


I think one more block will be enough for a class sample, but I may decide I like it enough to make it bigger...

I am thinking that I would like to use the other halves of the Jelly roll strips to make a crosses quilt. It is one of those designs that relies on a design wall to lay out the pieces and then you sew together in rows. I made a quilt like this once before in Oakshott cottons that was called the Donut Quilt. I think the pattern is called Kansas Dugout!

Friday 15 November 2013

And more yet..

Julie with her creation.. Busy bunnies..


 Colette's Christmas Quilt
 And a detail
Got it together!! My Winding Ways can now go off to be quilted by the incomparable Mandy Parks of the Quilts Whiskers!

More Retreatings

Mandy's quilt, Den Haan and Wagenmaker fabrics. And detail
People are getting stuff finished.

Thursday 14 November 2013

More Retreat Quilts

 Carrie's Quilt
and Julie's Pixelated Wedding Ring - she was up till 1 am doing this!

Wednesday 13 November 2013

On retreat

I'm away from home on quilt retreat, at Belsey Bridge. There is so much home cooked food I couldn't face supper and just ate half a banana!
I have made great progress with the Winding Ways quilt and now have half of it sewn together.
This started life as bunting at a wedding, and is now going to be a quilt for the lucky couple!

Saturday 9 November 2013

Making progress.

The top two rows are completely joined now and the third row joined to itself. Subsequent blocks are placed to check fabric variety, but also I am trying to make sure that the lovely pale blue accents are scattered across the quilt surface. I am looking too at the value, checking that I am including blocks where the darks are sometimes medium, and the same with the lights. In fact the same fabric in some instances is placed both as a dark and then as a light in different blocks. This is how you get movement in the design, so that the large dark circles pop out as you look at the quilt and then the large light circles appear as your eye moves over the surface. So lots of considerations but an enjoyable process.
I am surprised by how dark it is overall ...

Thursday 7 November 2013

Design Wall

Hooray hooray! I have got my temporary design wall installed so I can work on my Winding Ways blocks. Each block has 12 different fabrics in and I need to lay them out so I can check that adjacent blocks do not have the same fabric in them. I probably won't entirely manage this but it's the aim!
My husband put a couple of curtain pole brackets up and a length of copper pipe (the curtain pole was not strong enough) and I put up a length of brushed heavyweight cotton bump. The blocks stick to it but need a pin or two when they've been joined together. The whole thing can come down quickly and easily.
Now to get some more pieced..

Saturday 2 November 2013

More Pattern..

I saw this amazing spotty leaf at Felbrigg when I went on my Fungi hunt. I suppose it has some kind of virus, I don't remember seeing anything like this before!

 And here are some more pattern pictures from the East Ruston Vicarage Garden - it's a treasure-trove of design ideas.
The beautiful birches

Contrast in colour and shapes

View through..

The garden is designed so that there are lots of viewpoints to catch the eye. There are holes in some of the hedges so you can catch a glimpse of Happisburgh lighthouse.
Grandchildren gone home now so back to the sewing machine!

Friday 1 November 2013

Hallowe'en and Hearts

Pumpkin lanterns
The grandchildren are here and carved pumpkins last night. They are definitely more scary with the lights out!

Lights in the night!

Pincushion with scissor pocket,Mandy Shaw design
Hearts are the theme for next year's FOQ Tombola and here's some I made earlier which I've posted off to Jan Allston in Region 2.

Embellished wool key-rings

Linen Heart

Woven ribbon heart

Heart pincushion

Monday 28 October 2013

Texture and Pattern

I went to visit the East Ruston Vicarage Garden. Quite famous locally as the owner, Alan Gray does a radio show each week. There is always a lot to see in the garden, which is huge, and I found lots to capture with my camera... I was looking for textures and pattern and there are some great examples. Couldn't resist the lovely old car though! I wonder who was visiting?
Bright white Birch bark

Beautiful car!

Giant leaves I crawled under

Contrasting textures and colour

Colour and pattern

Enormous pot with weathering

Rustic chairs

Pattern contrasts

Giant trumpet flowers