Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Strings are moving along

There was no sewing over the weekend as we were too busy with family visiting, which was nice to spend quality time with them over the ANZAC weekend. 

I received a lot of comments on my poppy for ANZAC Day which I made it last year and have been wearing lately.

Sunday saw drizzle turn to rain but before it did we managed to get in a visit to Memorial Park for a look around. I am always impressed with this fountain, it is pretty big and children play in it during the heat of the summer. While we were there a Great Dane stood and drank out of it, the smaller dog that was with the Great Dane didn't stand a chance of getting a drink.

Friday saw all of the blocks completed for the string quilt but I didn't get a chance to start sewing them together until yesterday and here is my progress.

I just have two seams to attach the traming over and the binding can go on and then this quilt is done. 
What a fantastic feeling it is getting close to a completion. Catch you later as I have some stitching to do.

Happy stitching everyone

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Some strings are happening

I have been working on some of these to bust some scraps, however it appears the more I use, the more I end up with!

I have been working on the quilting for Home Coming Lane lately but decided to work on something else over the weekend at our UFO weekend at club as I need to concentrate too much for machine quilting, especially as this quilt is going on the wall. Some easy stitching while chatting with friends was what I was after, and QAYG strings are just the ticket.

Since the weekend I have decided I need just a few more to get enough squares for a decent size throw or lap quilt. 

So I have been sewing away and the end is in sight and I am looking forward to joining these squares together.

Oops, nearly forgot these blocks weren't the only thing that I did over the weekend. I found this UFO from a class at my first ever Symposium, Auckland 2005. These were from a log cabin with attitude class with Janice Gunner from the UK where we were encouraged to cut fabric without a ruler. One square was complete while the other two just had the centres completed. I decided to get these squares completed before making a final decision as to what to do with them.

However more on that soon, but in the meantime some stitching is calling my name. 

Happy stitching everyone.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Progress on Home Coming Lane

Yes, there has definitely been some movement with this project. 

I don't like quilting big quilts any more, well to be honest I have never liked quilting larger quilts on the machine, my shoulders and patience really just don't cope with it at all. Quilting is supposed to be fun and if it isn't fun, then I just don't do it. 

This probably explains my reluctance to quilt anything and complete things and why I have so many UFO's lurking in my sewing room and any other place that I have been able to stash them around the house. This is exactly why the Top 5 group at club has been established, it was an idea sparked by a conversation about these UFO's and the need to tackle them. My stack of UFO's was made very public last year when I presented my quilting journey at club and showed many flimsies amongst my presentation.

Yes some of these flimsies are due to just needing some mindless sewing during semester breaks while I was studying a few years ago and others were waiting for me to up skill myself so I had the techniques and confidence to do the next step without wasting all the work that had been put into it already, nor waste the fabric. There are many reasons why our projects end up in the UFO bin.

However, I digress - last week we had our first show and tell for the first quarter of the Top 5 group and I was incredibly disappointed with myself that although I have been chipping away at this project, it wasn't completed in time for this reveal. It was very exciting seeing everyone else's completions and hearing how long they had indeed been UFO's before graduating to a completion and while I was excited for them all I couldn't go past the fact that didn't have anything completed.

I tend to over think things and I haven't been able to decide which batting to use for this quilt, which is silly really thinking about it now. The purpose for this quilt is to hang on the wall and once I realised that either of the two choices were going to work there was no stopping me. So Tuesday saw me grab some batting and some backing and I put my sandwiches together. 

I had decided a while ago that I would 'quilt as you go' this quilt in four sections. Each block is 25" square and so I decided to just go with that. 

Yesterday I cleaned my machine - it sure doesn't take long for the lint to build up - and I couldn't put it off any more. Without thinking too much I just started, I worked out where I was going first and just did it. I decided to stitch in the ditch around the house blocks, the appliqué flower, vine and bird blocks and the pinwheels. The stitch in the ditch will give the wall hanging a good base and some definition as the quilting in the scrappy squares will be different to these areas. 

Funny isn't it how you don't notice things when you are putting the quilt top together but notice things as you are quilting them. On the second block I noticed that two leaves somehow avoided the blanket stitch brigade, yet I was so sure that I had checked and double checked everything. 

The 25" squares are working very well, they are a very good size to get through the machine while quilting and are easy to turn and roll without too much bulk, they were also a really good size to batt up on the end of the kitchen bench.

Today I will carry on, at this stage I have no idea what I am going to do next but I am sure it will come to me. Until next time, happy stitching everyone.


Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Hexie progress

There are more hexies in this little project than what I had expected however it is very addictive!

This is the lining for my little bag although I have to say looking at it like this, it is looking bigger than I thought it would. I have checked with a completed bag and it is the right size. I am on the last row of hexies and the tips that I learnt at club last week are definitely helping. 

I have the hexies for the outside base done and just need to start sewing the rounds of hexies together for the outside and then the bag will be ready for putting together and finishing off. 

As much as I love summer, now that daylight saving has finished it is quite nice sharing the evenings with family and doing stitching by the light of the lamp and seeing some progress being made on some projects.

Until next time, happy stitching everyone.


Saturday, April 09, 2016

Some hexies are going on...

I am taking a break from my regular hexie project for the moment and are making these hexies.

I made these hexies at club yesterday and continued last night for a little project, I have more to make today until I have what I need. These little cuties are 1 inch while the hexies I am creating for my insanity quilt are 3/4 inch. 

This is how you measure hexies, across one edge

Paper piecing has become very popular at the moment amongst my quilting circles. Like a lot of things it started off with one or two people doing it and now we have a very big following in our local club.  After the official part of our meeting everyone sits around chatting while stitching which makes for a very pleasant day. It is very interesting seeing the variations that everyone is doing, the different sizes, different shapes and while some fussy cut their fabrics others are happy to just cut and sew to get the best economy out of their fabrics. 

I will try and remember to gets some photos at the next meeting to show you the variations.  We had two ladies sit with us yesterday learning the ropes and while a more experienced quilter talked them through the process, the rest of us at the table picked up a tip or two and I love how quilting gives you the opportunity to share and grow while spending quality time with our friends.

I have some more hexies to create if I am going to get this little project completed, so until next time happy stitching everyone.


Sunday, April 03, 2016

A little cultural break

Hubby and I are having a bit of a cultural break this weekend, soaking up some big city experiences. We normally just drive straight through Auckland and curse it for the traffic jams and time wasting sitting in queues so it isn't often that we come and stay in Auckland.

Some pics of where we are staying.

It is nice spending some time with hubby showing him some of the jewels of Auckland that I get to discover when I visit the big smoke with my quilty buddies. 

Need to go and get ready to head out to a concert. See you all back here soon.

Happy stitching everyone.

Friday, April 01, 2016

Yay, block four is done!

Wow, yesterday I kept chipping away joining segments together and last night at last block four was completed.

Warm off the ironing board I placed it on the floor to get a photo and true to form Frosty the cat ran to it and sat down. What is it about fresh new blocks that makes our fur babies want to sit or lie on them?

Block four with Frosty
This quilt is one of my Top 5 and I am excited seeing the progress on this one. I have had to push myself to keep the momentum going, but I am so glad that I did. There have been times when I thought that I would never get there and these are the times that I would normally put a project aside and work on something else. I am so glad that I have persevered and I think it will be easier to push through like this on the next project too as a result of this one.

Block Four
Although life things have been going on that I have had to work around, I have tried to do some sewing every day. Having the finishing line in sight definitely helped with the last of the hand stitching and not all of the stitches are created equal but they are done. I am indeed one happy lady.

I decided a while ago that I would quilt each of these blocks individually and then join them together. Today I will endeavour to get them batted up, I can't decide which batting to use as this will be a wall hanging, so will think on that while at stitching with friends this morning.

At this stage I have no idea about the quilting for these but are working on the theory that it will come to me as I go - at least I hope so.

All four blocks arranged together
Anyway I want to get this posted and get moving as I have another busy day ahead. I have recently been taking photos on my iPad but have had some feedback as to the poor quality of them, so last night I took photos on the camera which always produces better results however I need to download them on the laptop and add them to this. Let me know if the quality is better or not.

Have an awesome day and happy stitching everyone.