Friday, 2 March 2018

Doctor Who Quilt ** Finish **

This quilt has been finished a while! I started this as part of a quilt along run by Whims and Fancies and Trillium Designs back in May 2013.

For the first few months I managed to stay on top of the blocks as they were published but then I got behind and had to play catch up and that took me quite some time.

Some of the blocks are posted here, here, and here. Until I had all the blocks but then it sat for a long time while I decided how I wanted to put it together into a top.

I made some text to go along with the blocks, but I didn't take pictures of those for some reason. But I did take a picture of a rough lay out.

For some reason it took me a long time to get this completed. 

Completed quilt top

I had grand designs for the back, more piecing and more blocks. But I had the idea to give this gift at Christmas and time was running out so I decided to use some fireside backing on the back instead. I chose a dark grey that went well with the purple. 

For the quilting I did large stippling around the purple background avoiding the blocks. I then did some small amounts of detailed quilting on the blocks. 

The quilted front

Quilting on the fireside backing

This quilt is large and rather heavy, but warm and cozy and finished! :) 

Pattern: Blocks by Whims and Fancies and Trillium Designs, layout by me
Quilting: Free motion stippling and some detailed outlining, by me
Fabric: Kona Midnight and fabrics from my stash
Size: 65" x 80" 
Started: May 2013
Finished: February 10, 2018

This was on my list of goals for the first quarter of the 2018 Finish-a-long.

Monday, 12 February 2018

Do Good Stitches ** Finish **

Last September was the quilter for our Do Good Stitches group - the Happiness Circle. So I chose a wonky, improv type log cabin. The colour scheme was turquoise/aquas and greys with the centre blocks being a red or yellow. Here are the two blocks I made for the quilt.

And here are all the blocks I received. Our group is not quite 12 so I was lacking a few, but luckily I have enough of these colours in my stash to make up the blocks.

To make it a little bigger I decided to add a border around the edge and I had some Kona ash that worked well and made it just the right size.

As usual, I didn't have enough of a single fabric for the backing. So I made a back in the style of the front - a large log cabin block. I am trying to use up some of the fabrics I have had for a long time, so this was perfect. I rather like the large style block.
The Back

Having done several quilts lately that required lots of quilting I was ready for a fast finish, so I kept the quilting simple on this quilt. I did organic lines across the quilt, super fast!

And look a label. I am terrible at labeling quilts. But this was simple as I was sent this little label and just had to attach it. They are perfect. 

When binding a quilt I usually opt to machine stitch the binding in place and then finish by hand. But this time I thought I would try sewing the binding down by machine. I have done this before but find I have to take it out more times than I can bare because it just doesn't work well. But this time it went like a dream, I couldn't believe it. No seam ripping!! 

And there we have it, another finished quilt ready for giving to a charity - just need to decide which one.

The Front

This was one of the projects on my Finish-a-long list for this first quarter! So good to tick another one off the list.

Pattern: Improv/wonky log cabin
Quilting: Free motion organic lines, by me
Fabric: Group quilt, so lots of different fabrics
Size: 58 x 70" 
Started: September 2017
Finished: February 11, 2018

Sunday, 11 February 2018

Quilt group box exchange

I recently joined a small quilt group that just started meeting on Friday evenings again. It's really informal and we meet at someones house. I have been taking my binding to finish, a perfect project to carry around. 

This week we started a quilt box exchange. We each create a box with a theme, colour scheme and a sample block. Each month we swap the boxes and make a block for that box according to the instructions inside. There are 10 of us taking part so towards the end of the year we should all have almost enough blocks for a quilt. 

There is quite a range of themes - summer, simple patchwork blocks, disappearing blocks, Christmas, shabby chic and Halloween. 

My theme is halloween and my colours are purple, green and orange because they were the colours in my halloween fabrics! I decided to give two options for blocks I'd like. Firstly, a wonky star block made using the tutorial here, and a choice of sizes. I am not thinking a rigid 4 x 3 quilt layout, so hopefully I will get a mixture of sizes, or I'll just make some myself.

12.5" Wonky Star
6.5" Wonky Star

The second choice of block is a halloween style block and my example block is a haunted house made using paper piecing. The colours don't look as distinct here as they actually are. The orange and yellow look the same, but they are actually quite different.

We don't get to see the blocks being made for us until the end of the swap, which is going to be really hard when the boxes are in the room. Guess that's part of the fun!

This month the box I received had instructions to make a light pink and grey simple patchwork block. Luckily the light pink fabrics were provided as I don't have much in the way of that colour these days. I just happen to have a book out of the library - The Quilt Block Cookbook by Amy Gibson with lots of individual blocks. So I chose the Winding block from this book and made it: 

Looking forward to swapping the box at the end of the month and having to make another random block. I like variety so this is great for entertainment.

Thursday, 25 January 2018

Harry Potter #3 ** Finish **

The final Harry Potter quilt is finished. Yay!! [Happy dance going on here]

This one is a bit different to the first two (see here and here). This quilt is for my eldest child who has finished all the books and watched all the films many times! She doesn't play the lego game like the other two kids so she wouldn't get some of the references that Whims and Fancies made for including certain blocks in her quilt along. 

Instead I went for some more typical Harry Potter characteristics. Like for instance a some of the the elder wand and some of the key characters:



The eyes were tricky on these blocks. One of Hagrid's eyes had I think 15 pieces and measured about an inch! Such tiny pieces! Not what is needed when in a rush! And I enlarged the blocks to be closer to 12 inches.


I saw the old Ford Anglia and just had to include that too and the bus. I didn't take photos of all the blocks as I was too consumed with time running out and forever moving onto the next block! I was also unable to post anything to my usual IG account as my eldest daughter follows me and it would have spoiled any kind of remaining surprise. So it never occurred to me to take a photos on completion of a block. They often wander into my sewing room and occasionally I would forget I had stuck a block on the wall, so there's a very good chance they saw some of the construction phases.

This quilt top was completed on Christmas Eve at about 4.30pm with the aid of some wine. Fortunately I had done just about everything else I had to do for the big day, so I was able to spend some time frantically getting the top together and kind of basted so I could at least hand it over in a somewhat complete state. 

Here is the final quilt:

This was one of the projects on my Finish-a-long list for this first quarter! So good to tick another one off the list.

Pattern: Blocks by Whims and Fancies and Fandom in Stitches, layout by me
Quilting: Free motion stippling and some detailed outlining, by me
Fabric: Moda Grunge and scraps, backing is Fireside
Size: 57 x 66" 
Started: June 2016
Finished: January 25, 2018

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Temperature Quilt

I nearly did a temperature quilt last year. Looking back now, I'm so pleased I didn't start it as I don't think it would have made it very far. But with many of my WIPs well on their way and no other quilt alongs or big sewing commitments I've decided to do it.

I pulled my fabrics. It just had to be Moda's Grunge and Kona solids! My plan is to do a diamond in a square block for each day of 2018. The background will be the solids and represent the low temperatures, and the diamond in grunge the high temps.

Fabric Pull

So far I have done the first 10 days of January! Not sure I like playing catch up, so once I am caught up I'm going to have to try and stay on top of it or I can see it will slip out of control! 

Jan 1-10
There's quite a few here that are the same colours. I guess we've had a fairly stable temperature so far, although at times it hasn't always felt like it. 

Jan 1st on the left

I am working in degrees C, and have assigned 2 degrees per colour starting with <-3 up to >33. I have a range of 20 colours both in grunge and solids. We'll see how this turns out. 

I really need to print out my list of temperatures and stick my little reference squares on it as I keep getting confused as to what colour goes with what temperatures. Maybe being more organised will help with keeping on track.

Off to do the next 10 days now! Wish me luck.

Saturday, 20 January 2018

Harry Potter #2 ** Finish **

It sure does feel good to get another one of these quilts finished. Pretty much the same as the first (see the post here), although a couple of blocks are different as I was struggling with the second block syndrome. How people repeat the same things over and over I do not know. For me I like variety so making the same thing more than once is tiresome. 

In this quilt the added blocks are the Wesley box and the Knight bus and I omitted the Time Turner as it was such a big block. 

Again the quilting is kept large and focused on outline parts of the individual blocks just to reduce the large areas of non-quilting. Here is the final quilt:

This was finished a while ago, I was just waiting until we had some nice weather to be able to take a picture.

This was one of the projects on my Finish-a-long list for this first quarter! So good to tick another one off the list.

Pattern: Blocks by Whims and Fancies and Fandom in Stitches, layout by me
Quilting: Free motion stippling and some detailed outlining, by me
Fabric: Moda Grunge and scraps, backing is Fireside
Size: 57 x 66" 
Started: June 2016
Finished: January 20, 2018

Sunday, 14 January 2018

Harry Potter #1 ** Finish **

Back in June 2016 I joined in a Harry Potter quilt a long being hosted by Soma at Whims and Fancies. The blocks were posted on a monthly basis with a few breaks here and there to allow catch up if necessary! I kept up reasonably well with the blocks and made progress. Some of the blocks can be seen here, here and here.

But then towards the end of the quilt along I was uncertain who I was making the quilt for. With 3 kids all enjoying Harry Potter in various stages of progress  who would receive the quilt. After mulling the idea for a while I started to duplicate some of the blocks and came up with the plan to make 3 quilts as Christmas gifts. This was the state of the blocks in April 2017, loads of time til Christmas!!
Some of the Harry Potter blocks
As ever with these things, time marched on, other things needed attention, summer hit and progress slowed considerably. 

By October I had managed to complete enough blocks to actually construct one quilt top. Not really knowing what to do about the backing I decided to take a chance on the Fireside backing that I had heard quite a bit about but never used. I was very impressed with it. Very cosy and it quilted very easily, which I must confess I was not expecting. 

I was lucky enough to go to a quilting retreat in November for a weekend and I actually managed to get the majority of it quilted and the binding sewn on. I stippled around the blocks not wanting to detract from the blocks. I tried to keep the quilting large and not too detailed to retain the cosiness of the fireside backing. I think it worked. 

On returning from the retreat this quilt then sat in it's unfinished state while I focused on the other two quilts. To cut to the end of this story. This quilt was not finished by Christmas Eve when it was gifted. The binding needed hand finishing, the ends sewing in and the larger blocks just needed a little more quilting. It was gifted all the same.

January 2018 came and I promised the recipient I would finished it ASAP. And now it is!

This was one of the projects on my Finish-a-long list for this first quarter! So happy to tick one off the list.

Pattern: Blocks by Whims and Fancies and Fandom in Stitches, layout by me
Quilting: Free motion stippling and some detailed outlining, by me
Fabric: Moda Grunge and scraps
Size: 57 x 66" 
Started: June 2016
Finished: January 12, 2018

Monday, 8 January 2018

Finish Along 2018 - Q1

Last year didn't see many finishes but I did complete several quilt tops. So this year I am determined to complete some projects. A lot of my sewing late in the year was secret sewing as I attempted to complete four quilts for Christmas. This was a little too ambitious. I didn't manage to complete any of them, but I did get them all to either basted or half quilted.

So my list of things to finish include:

First up are the Harry Potter quilts I was frantically trying to get done for my 3 kids for Christmas. They were gifted in various states of unfinish. I have promised to get these done as soon as I can so they are my priority!

1. Harry Potter quilt number 1 - a few of the larger blocks require a little bit of quilting and the binding finished. Oh, and a label.

2. Harry Potter quilt number 2 - this needs quilting and binding.

3. Harry Potter quilt number 3 - this also needs quilting and binding.

4. Doctor Who quilt - This was the fourth quilt I was trying to get done before Christmas, I started it about 4 years ago. The blocks need a little quilting and the binding finishing.

Other things with less priority:

5. Do Good Stitches - I need to make a couple more of these blocks in order to complete the quilt top. The blocks have come from the ladies of the Happiness Circle Do Good Stitches group. Given I will be the quilter again in a few months I need to complete this one so I don't have too much of a back log!!

6. Tula Pink City Sampler - I don't really expect too much progress on this one this quarter, but I can aim high! It needs the backing finished and then basting. 

Looking forward to starting some new projects when these are done!
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