Monday, 9 December 2019

Quilty Finishes

I am happily sneaking in finishes of my two quilts for donating to CT's pre-school.

Both quilts were quilted diagonally through the centres in both directions and then quilted in chevrons 1.5" apart within each quarter created by the diagonals.   Although both of these night time photos are terrible and you can barely see the quilting at all, you can take my word for it that the quilting suited the star designs of each quilt.

This Giant Star quilt looks much brighter in real life and I love the red stripe binding to just finish it off.

I don't often piece backs for quilts but there was plenty of fabric left over from the front piecing so I went ahead and made the backing instead of returning it to my stash.  Feeling virtuous at lightening my stash and storage a tiny bit ;-)

And that, I suspect is the last of my finishes for 2019.  It's been a funny year stitch-wise.  I'd say I didn't really do much this year but looking back through my posts I can see I achieved more than I remember.  I think planning was the key to this year's success.  I made use of time when I couldn't get behind the machine to prep anyway, so that when I had machine time I could just get on with things.  I managed to finish two quilts WIPs I carried into the year, started and finished 3 new quilts since January and made a very small start on the Spelling Bee quilt, too.  There was a nice variety of small makes too, including half a dozen cushion covers, some armchair caddies, a sleeping bag and even a little bit of embroidery here and there too, among other things.

Of course, I am still carrying WIPs forward (some very long-term) into 2020, but who knows, maybe this will be their year.  As I contemplate next year's sewing plans, I think it would be nice to focus on finishes and little makes, instead of new big quilts.  But how I feel now may not be how I feel when I'm bombarded with loveliness via IG and Pinterest ;-)  On a positive note, it's all a good sign that creativity is still alive inside, and still eager to be let loose!

Monday, 18 November 2019

Christmas Countdown Complete

Another happy finish to report!  This Christmas Countdown wallhanging was fun to make and hopefully will bring much pleasure to CT in future years.

The pattern is by Hadley of Flying Blind on a Rocket Cycle blog from Quilt Now Magazine some years back.

My WIP list is getting smaller- yay!!

Thursday, 14 November 2019

Strippy Heart Wallhanging - a finish

Although there was a lot more chattering and catching up about our families and all things stitch related while we #threadsacrossthesea girls got together at the beginning of the month, there was a weeny bit of sewing happening too.  Hot off the back of my productive retreat weekend, I took my Strippy Heart Wallhanging along to our Saturday sew day at Judith's fabulous studio and finished the quilt off by stitching the binding down by hand and adding a little label for posterity.  So, happy with this little quilt.

Committee please note that I have one finish as promised!

Monday, 11 November 2019

Fancy a picnic?

One of CT's favourite things to do is have a picnic with Daddy.  Rare pic above of Mummy picnicking - I am not generally a fan of eating outdoors, even in nice weather (bugs) but CT and Daddy picnic all year round!!  This year their first picnic was on New Year's Day - brrrrr!!

What does this have to do with sewing, you ask?  Well, CT doesn't play particularly well with toys and I'm learning that those toys that stand any chance of interesting her and actually getting played with need to be toys that are relevant to her experience.  She enjoys a little kitchen play because she loves to eat and occasionally loves to help with "mixie", but she would struggle to play with a vet's kit because I wouldn't be able to explain that to her properly - no relevance.  So, as the approach of the festive season is looming I had a brainwave and decided that a toy picnic set might be a good idea for her Christmas stocking.

Et voila - one picnic basket and blanket!

Oh the cuteness!

Believe it or not, most of the fabrics for this were scraps resulting from other scraps I worked with on my Scrappy Heart Wallhanging - I tell you, those things are multiplying!!

With 340 1.5" squares I whipped up little four patches, alternated them with 84 2.5" squares and finished with a small 1.5" border to give a 28.5" picnic quilt.

It's a very busy little quilt, like the little lady who will be its recipient!

An upscaled version on Ayumi's Fabric Basket tutorial serves well as a picnic basket, holding the little quilt and a yummy picnic lunch for Peppa and George to feast upon!

CT is slowly getting a little better at imaginative play so I am hoping that being able to relate to this might motivate her to do more, and for a little longer.

Feel like I should hashtag this post with #makingitupasigoalong iro the picnic accessories and the parenting of a child with Learning Difficulties!

Monday, 4 November 2019

Armchair Caddies in triplicate

I was blessed to get some time with my lovely sewing besties this weekend.  It wasn't enough time as always, but we did much catching up, a smidgin of stitching and had a few giggles, too.

You may remember I had a lot of fun making an armchair caddy myself earlier this year, so I tripled the fun and in honour of our meet up I made one for each of them (pattern from Sedef Imer's lovely book, Zakka Home).

With a little help from friendly types on IG re fabrics for Judith's caddy, I made fabric pulls and got stitching. 

This time I made the binding as per the book instructions and it definitely looks neater than the wider binding I used on my own (because I already had it left over). 

I also switched the little button tag on the pattern for an embroidered name tag (mainly because my button stash just wasn't up to it). I think it looks ok.

 I'm having a hard time deciding which is my favourite because I love all of the fabric combos.

What I do think is funny is that, not knowing that I was making a gift for Judith, the IG responders to my fabric cry for help overwhelmingly voted for the denim essex linen background above the natural shades and the darker navy I had offered up as choices.  I mean, denim essex for the queen of denim makes - how much more appropriate could it get?!

Of course, I was also the recipient of beautiful gifts too.  We all agreed it was like Christmas morning during our gift swap, only better because we knew we were going to like what we opened!!  Trudi made each of us a stunning Clearly Carry All pouch (pattern by Zeriano). Trudi made this is my favourite ever Bonnie and Camille Ruby fabric and added gorgeous embroidery detail on the contrasting linen.  Judith made us all tweed kantha drawstring bags and each had a humorous mug inside.  My mug says 'I might look like I'm working but in my head I'm sewing'  - oh how apt!  Mind you, one of the other mugs said 'I sew because punching people is frowned upon' - that could have been for me, too ;-)  Di gifted us all the Cake District reusable shopping bags from Booths which we all very much appreciated since our sewing skills are fairly well matched to our cake eating abilities! Di also has little pouches for us with thread snips, a needle thread (which given the poor state of my eyesight is going to come in handy) and then two beautiful woodturned gifts made by her lovely husband.  We each received a little wooden Christmas tree and a stunning little wooden needle case - it really is divine!

So, you see, we sewing besties #threadsacrossthesea really know how to spoil each other, and it's no wonder that we really love getting together when we can.

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