Tuesday 29 January 2013

Three more...

Here are the Farmer's Wife Blocks I made today:

                                          Windmill, Batwing and Tall Pine Tree.
The Tall Pine Tree is Norfolk Quilters Logo, chosen I would guess for Thetford Forest which is in the centre of our area, usually shown in  green and white. I have made it as another scrappy block, using up some bits of squares left over from when a friend was making a red and white quilt and cut a bit out of the corner of all my red fabrics.
I used the Farmer's wife templates for these and they came out the right size.
No broken needles on my machine today.

Sunday 27 January 2013

Century of Progress

What a weird name for a block!
And what a blighter it is to make - I made a Foundation paper pattern for it in the end and spent a while wondering about the colour placement. I printed two copies of the pattern I'd drawn and cut one up to slightly over-sized templates so that I wasn't wasting too much fabric. Cut out to nearly the right size with just a bit extra for leeway it went together very well until the last, centre seam. I broke 3 needles stitching it, two of them brand new! And I'd taken the paper away from the seam area!!
You'll notice that I chose to finish up some fabric that wasn't quite enoughso this is truly a scrap block, but I like that about it.

Friday 25 January 2013

Patchwork Bookwraps

I've been busy preparing for my class on Curved Piecing tomorrow, but have made a couple of Patchwork book covers and have several more pending... You will recognise the fabrics from the two tote bags I made recently.

Saturday 19 January 2013

The Scooter Tote

Bag front
 The Blue Tote Bag.

This bag was fun to make as I like the Scooter print which has been lurking in my stash for ages! It is shorter and wider than the pink tote, with a wider bottom.
Ideal for taking the library books back.
I used a different construction method for lining this bag and ended up sitting in front of the television hand finishing the inside.
The other lighter fabrics were co-ordinating prints, but the dark was from my Japanese fabrics and it took almost half a metre!
Bag back

The scooter print

Friday 18 January 2013

Homemaker Block

This is my version of Homemaker, a tricky block with inset seams. I used the templates that Gilly had produced, lent to me by Michelle, and finely woven cotton fabric. I pieced it without too much trouble following the order of stitching the seams as shown in the book. I found it was easier at the end to sew with the centre square on top so I could see where I was going. You have to remember to sew only to the stitching line and not into the turnings, or seam allowances, and take a couple of small stitches back to fasten off; then the set in seams are not a problem and there is no extra bulk, as there may be if you stitch over foundation fabrics.

Thursday 17 January 2013

New Farmers Wife Blocks

Economy block for Ruth

Here are the blocks I cut out yesterday with the Marti Michell templates from set A. Because the corners are nubbed they are really easy to fit together, and seem to come out the right size.

Bowtie and Economy for Michelle

Bowtie and Economy for me

Seasons for me

Seasons, for Ruth
I also found a couple of Seasons blocks already cut for me and for Ruth hiding at the bottom of a pile of fabric on the table. I made these by drawing out the block to size and then cutting up the paper to use as a pattern. You do have to think about where you need the straight of grain on the outside of the block before you cut these out!

Wednesday 16 January 2013

New Tote Bag

I have been keeping warm and staying in at home, sewing. The smaller roads are icy and the temperature went down to -13c overnight!! Coldest it's been for ages. We've had several more snowstorms today coming off the North Sea, but they were interspersed with blue skies and bright sunshine.
Back of tote bag.

Front of Tote bag
Today I completed my tote bag.It is stitch and flip patchwork over wadding on a cotton duck base. Close stitching to quilt it makes it stand up nicely.

I've added a zip pocket, patch pocket for my phone, and a magnetic fastener.
Inside showing the two pockets and fastener.

As I couldn't go out to quilt group at Winterton, on the coast, I spent a while working out how to use the Marti Michell templates to cut some more quilt blocks.

Here is a Shooting Star block for Michelle which I pieced over papers yesterday,

I made Big Dipper for me too as I found a bag with quarter-squares already to go that were the correct size!

Sunday 13 January 2013

Lucycat finds a quilt!

 Lucy found my take-along hand sewing, a quilt for me with garden quotes and hand appliqué that I have been working on for some time. Her expression says it all!
When I came back later there was an even more proprietorial pose: Mine, and I'm staying here!!

Friday 11 January 2013

Swapped Farmer's Wife Blocks

I met up with Ruth and Michelle today and collected some lovely blocks that Ruth has made for me. The Grape Basket bottom left I made the rest are Ruth's, from top left Old Windmill, Maple Leaf, Autumn Tints, Hovering Birds and Basket.Really nice aren't they!
Now I have to make some for Michelle...

 Ruth wants hers in 30s fabrics, and we were discussing the need for contrast. Here is my Bright Baskets Quilt made in mostly 30's reproduction fabrics, the Plains, some of them Oakshott shott cottons do help to give contrast but, although it is lovely in the flesh so to speak, it tends to look spotty in a photograph.

I have foundation pieced Shooting star which came out very well once I had taken the paper off and pressed it,

Wednesday 9 January 2013

New Farmer's Wife Blocks

Wild Geese

Mother's Dream

Buckwheat, version two!
Three more blocks, experimenting with Marti Michell's templates from set A borrowed from a friend, for Mother's Dream and Wild Geese, which both went together reasonably well and ended up the right size!
Buckwheat I have remade, using the paper templates from the CD as my first version was rather too big.

Tuesday 8 January 2013

Lovely dyes

More pictures of the lovely dyestuffs! The wool blankets and cotton scrims have dyed particularly well and will make some gorgeous book covers.

Back to normal now all my visitors have gone home.Time to get on with some sewing!

Cottons, linens and silk.

Woollen threads and scrim

A basket of dyed woollen blanket.
Here is the next block for Ruth's Farmer's Wife quilt: Chequerboard. Too many bias edges for comfort.

Monday 7 January 2013

Dyeing day

Yesterday I had a lovely time dyeing linen and cotton with Procion dyes and dyeing woollen threads, pieces of blanket and silk in a microwave with acid dyes. Super fun, and the reds are still rinsing in the washing machine! Dye days at Helen Howes workshop are great, no mess in your own kitchen! www.helenhowestextiles.co.uk

Today I went back to the machine embroidery class in Norwich and we made a panel with strips of silk  and machine stitches. They could be made into a pouch for a mobile phone, but I made mine into another book wrap.