Thursday, June 30, 2011

Gypsy Quilt Top

Have just finished putting together the quilt top from Westminister's Gypsy fat quarters which I won in  a competition at Want It, Need It
I added some cream to act as a background for the colours, then decided to add some sashing and managed to match up the blue in a plain fabric.

I just had enough Gypsy scraps left to make a multi-coloured strip which I will use for the binding.

Now I am seriously considering stitching the binding to the border before I add the batting and backing. I would certainly do a better job with a more accurate 1/4" seam than I do when sewing through all thicknesses.  As yet I haven't been able to think of any reason why it wouldn't work doing it that way  Sew it now, then do the quilting, finally trim and handsew the back.

All that's needed is a smart little holiday house down on the coast which would be the perfect setting for this quilt.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Little Purses

I wanted a small purse for a gift but I got enthusiastic and ended up making four
They are about 4 1/2  " wide and were made from a Valori Wells pattern.  Here they are opened up, showing the three  pockets.  The paisley purse in the top left hand corner is the one I made carefully following the pattern, but after that I made some adjustments.
They are made by stacking up all the layers and then stitching and turning them out.  You have three pockets (each 2 pieces of fabric), an outside piece and a lining - eight pieces of fiddly curved layers with 1/4" seams which have to be juggled to be stacked up with the edges meeting accurately. That's hard.  So what I did was cut 5 1/2" strips of each fabric and then cut rectangular pieces deep enough to make each pocket..  It was only the outer piece of the purse with its iron on stiffening that I cut to the correct shape
You can see how I have stacked the pockets on the lining of the purse withoujt having to worry too much about matching edges - just get the pockets nicely spaced, then lay the outer piece of the purse face down on the pockets and stitch around the correct shape, leaving a space to turn out, trim and clip, then turn out.

I had trouble with the lower square corners so I made each piece a fraction longer so that I could put a curve on these lower corners. Great fun.  Sewing on the press studs was the hardest part.

Making these little purses reminded me of a slightly larger one I made in a class a few years ago. The challenge was to take a piece of self-patterned fabric, mark out the shape of a purse, then re-embroider the pattern with threads and beads.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Sixth and Final Embroidery for the Flower Quilt

Today I finished the sixth and final embroidery for my Flower Quilt.  I'll be able to call this quilt my Friday Quilt as most of the six embroideries have been done on Friday afternoons when five of us meet at a friend's house.

We must have done a lot of talking this year as I have been doing this tulip since February whereas the other five embroideries were done much more quickly last year.

The original quilt is all white, which looks beautiful in a glossy magazine (Inspirations No 59), but for me this wouldn't be very practical so I will have to start thinking about which coloured or patterned fabrics would suit these embroideries.  The cream squares, about 8" or 9", will be on point.

The blocks for the Gypsy Quilt are mounting up.  It will be 5 blocks square so as I

have already done nineteen blocks there are still six to do.  That will be something to keep me occupied next weekend.

I am a very slow starter most mornings but I had to be a bit more organized than usual this morning as I wanted to see 9 year old grandson running in a 2km cross country race. He had done well at school and district levels but now 80 competitors in the Under-10 race at Zone level was a much stiffer competition for him and he finished in the middle of the field..  There was a large range of natural ability among the runners.  It's great to see the young ones having new experiences.

Here are some of the competitors heading up a grassy part.  It didn't help either the runners or the competitors that it was wintry cold and raining on and off.  It took place in a mildly hilly park - the sea is just down the other side of the hill  - and there were three uphill sections in the race.