Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Falling Leaves

Other interests have been taking up my time but every now and again I get some patchwork and quilting done.  At least at our Friday afternoon meetings if I don't talk too much I catch up on a little hand quilting.  I did these six little leaf embroideries last year and last week I saw some soft cream and beige fabric that had a delicate pattern of flowers, leaves and birds in just the right colours to complement the leaves,with this result.

Sometimes in my imagination I call it Leaves Falling on Post and Rail Fences.

This leaf uses a dark burgundy thread and this colour is repeated in one of the "rails" though it appears to be more blue-purple in the first photo..

I am going to try something different for the backing, or at least different for me.  I have chosen a wide backing fabric self-patterned with scrolly stems and leaves . I am going to use this pattern as my hand-quilting lines and so am going to do the quilting from the back side.of the quilt for a nice all over curved stitching.  It is going to be an interesting experience !

Monday, July 22, 2013


The little baskets in this quilt were made using some charm squares from Moda's Buttercup. The colours are very delicate and feminine.  The basket handles were sewn on last year  and it has gradually been put together, with the borders added this weekend.   Now to prepare it for quilting, with another UFO taken off the pile.

 I used Brandie's tutorial given on ABC at
to learn how to make the baskets.  When it came to putting the quilt together I couldn't face all those tiny cornerstones so this is what I did.

I decided to vary the widths of the sashings.  I took four blocks - two plain and 2 baskets - and joined them into groups of four with 1/2" sashing.
I took four groups of four and used  3/4" sashing to turn them into groups of 16.
I took four groups of sixteen and used 1" sashing to turn them into groups of 64.
I finally took four groups of 64 (or part thereof) and used 11/4" sashing to turn them into groups of  (well, you calculate it !) You can see this final wider sashing better in the photo below,  where the sashings cross each other in the bottom half of the quilt.

I alternated two different fabrics for the sashing,  In retrospect it might have been better if they were not quite so close in colour.

Another bit of a variation I made was to occasionally replace the cream background with a co-ordinating colour from the same range, occasionally as the background to a handle and sometimes in place of the cream diamond. It helped break up the regularity.

I was also lucky enough to have had a little bias binding maker gadget from the quilt shop to turn out beautifully regular bias binding  for me.  Needle turning to make the handles is not my forte !

So, thanks Brandie for showing us how to make the baskets.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Shall I call it an Autumn Quilt ?

It's not really necessary to name every quilt but it does make it easier to attach a name otherwise I'll end up referring to this latest effort as that dark floral thingy with the bits of orange.

So I have still been  trying to clean up some UFOs and use up some of the fabric I have while resisting the temptation to buy more. But at times I get easily distracted and concentrate on other interests so I haven't blogged for a while.
I still have to add a cream border then a noisy border made from the scraps. The bottom right corner is quite square but has been lifted by a breeze in the photo.

Often quilts never look quite like you envisioned them.  Most times when  I look at this quilt top  I see the strong-coloured blocks, but the next time the cream colour dominates.  The first time this happened to me I was amazed that my first thought was for the 21st Century Garden at the entrance of the Geelong Botanic Gardens, a modern arrangement I couldn't bear to live with.  It includes some metal sculptures which  represent trees.  Can you see the resemblance ?
The next time I looked at it I started seeing a collection of Eureka Flags (from Australian history at Ballarat).  My imagination is working overtime on what is a rather ordinary quilt top.

Earlier this year I had nearly finished a Starry Farmers quilt.  This is now finished..I hand quilted the centre then I did some random squiggly quilting with the machine on the outer border.  it was the first time I had tried this.

Winter officially starts the day after tomorrow so it's likely that I'll spend more time on P and Q over the next few months.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Starry Farmers

Lasr August I made some 6" Farmer's Wife blocks from Laurie Aaron Hird's book and they were looking good.

In the lull after Christmas I brought the basket out again and had a look at what I'd done.  Considering the quantity of UFOs I have I decided that perhaps it was time to convert these blocks into a quilt.

There weren't enough blocks to show them off with just a small sashing as in the picture so I cut a heap of triangles to put on on the corners of each on-point patchwork piece to turn it into a square. Once again I was just using up left-over pieces from other quilts.

I had  designed (scribbled ?) a layout on paper but when I put all the pieces in place on the carpet it looked a bit of a mess. So on and off for two days I crawled around the carpet rearranging the pieces and threatening to throw the whole lot in the bin.

In the end I took a photo to remind me of what went where - I really did need to pick up all the pieces so that I could get from one end of the room to the other without entering into a long jump competition.  The resulting quilt top is  -

Most of the time I call it Starry Farmers but at other times I call it HotchPotch as it really is a bit of a jumble. If I was doing it again I think I might try putting the small blocks together with a dark green sashing as in the first photo and use it on point as the centrepiece of the quilt, then build it up from there. It would probably have shown off the blocks to better advantage.  The one thing I am pleased with is that when adding the border I decided to extend the side stars into the border to make them complete. It is 54" square and the binding will be dark green.

I'll piece together some more of the bigger scraps to make the backing.

And just for fun, and because the more I play around on the computer the longer I can put off the things I should be doing -