Monday, 29 July 2013

In the pipeline

A friend gave me a strip of cartoon-style frogs, ideal for a baby/child quilt. There were 11 blocks on the strip, each measuring 3.5" square so just right to make the centre of a Log cabin block.

The frog blocks are bright primary colours and orange so I hunted out scraps of orange, yellow/cream, green and blue to make the logs.  When I made my two Peter Rabbit Log Cabin quilts I used the colours in rounds: pink, yellow, green and blue, alternating the order of the colour frames for each block.

Like this:

However, when I started to make the Frog Log Cabin blocks I don't think I was really concentrating (blame the hot weather!) and  I used the four colours in turn for each round of the log cabins.  By the time I had made all 9 blocks I really wasn't keen on them, they looked too busy and haphazard and I felt the logs rather detracted from the cute frog centres.
But I had trimmed the blocks on each round so didn't want to waste the fabric or my time unpicking.
So, I persevered and decided that aqua Kona Cotton might tone things down a little so I cut 2" sashing strips.  As soon as I started joining the blocks and then the rows with the sashing in between the blocks suddenly started to look much calmer and much better! Magic.

Yesterday I completed the sashing and made a narrowish aqua border around the whole quilt, again using 2" strips of my Kona Cotton.

At that point I stood back and decided the quilt needed two more borders, a bright scrappy one and a final aqua one. I raided my stash of 2.5" cut squares ( which I cut when I have suitable small scraps, one day perhaps making a Scrap Vomit Quilt?) and made the four scrap borders. 

So here we are, My Frog Quilt 'In the pipeline', ready for it's final 3" aqua border.

And a Close up of the blocks, sashing and scrappy border:

I still think I prefer the way I did the Log Cabin blocks for my Peter Rabbit Quilt but, as this Frog Quilt has evolved, I find I can live with it and will be happy to finish it and gift it at sometime in the future.  Two more babies due in the Autumn, and if one is a boy, then this is the quilt I will give as a present.

I do find it interesting how my ideas change as I work through the process of making a quilt. 
I set off with fairly clear intentions as to the colours and main design ( Log Cabin, Strips, Stars etc) and then as the quilt grows I find colours I thought would work well, especially for sashing, don't really pass muster, and I change my idea and colours.

This happened in my last quilt the QAYG Strip blocks when I changed my idea of aqua sashing to the yellow and again in this current project, adding two extra borders, including the scrappy squares one.

Do tell me if the same happens when you make quilts! 

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Thursday Projects

Linking with Maybush Studio Linky Party today.

Thursday is a good day for me because this is my local group's Patchwork meeting day. 

We are called The Crackley Quilters and meet in each other's houses on a Thursday morning for coffee, delicious cakes and biscuits (often home baked), chat and, of course, sewing!
We put the world to rights, enjoy each other's friendship and exchange of ideas on the Patchwork front.  A few members also crotchet and knit and occasionally these appear as well as patchwork.

We make group quilts for members celebrating significant birthdays and there has been a rash of those in the past few months: 2 x 80th birthdays and a 70th.  We also like to show that we care when members are experiencing ill health and recently made two group quilts. One for Joy who had had a dreadful fall and broke her elbow and another for Candy who was experiencing poor health.
It's lovely to make these quilts in secret and so far no one has guessed there was a quilt in the pipeline for them!  I think we would all be excellent Double Agents!

Here's the 70th Birthday quilt we gifted:

So in a little while I shall be off to my Crackley Quilters' meeting carrying my Patchwork bag which was made by Candy for my birthday.

And inside is the quilt I am currently hand quilting which is what I shall be doing this morning (as well as drinking coffee and eating delicious treats!)

It's another of my UFOs, now a WIP!
Then this afternoon, as the weather is grey and looks like more heavy rain, I shall be upstairs in my Sewing Room, putting together these log cabin blocks:

So, a Happy Patchwork Day to you!

Maybush Thursday Linky Party

Monday, 15 July 2013

QAYG String Quilt finished

So pleased to finish my QAYG String Quilt today.
I sat in the garden enjoying our beautifully hot sunny day hand sewing the binding and embroidering the label.  Now all ready to post tomorrow!

I loved making the QAYG blocks, using lots of scraps of "Boy type" fabrics, including some scraps I have been given recently.  I also needed to augment them by cutting strips from fat quarters and yardage from my stash.  It's amazing how much fabric you use making strip blocks.
I used a variety of blue fabrics for the back of the blocks, including some novelty prints.  All of these appeared in the strips too.

A great variety of fabrics, so lots and lots of I Spy opportunities from elephants to insects, and space ships to bird houses!  Even some penguins and pukeko (swamp hens) from New Zealand.

Can you see the pukeko, bottom left?  The bright blue birds with red beak and legs? They are almost as bright a blue in real life!
And here's what it looks like on the back.  I used a lemon Kona Cotton to join the QAYG blocks, hand sewing the joining strips on the back.

Two more close ups to show some of the many different fabrics used in this quilt.

And the finished quilt, 63" inches square.  Very heavy as my husband will testify, as he held it up for me to photograph!
I have to say I found joining the blocks quite hard.  Joining the blocks into rows was OK but joining the long rows together was a challenge.  The weight of the quilt was unwieldy and dragged the 1/4" seam line off so many times. A lot of unpicking was done.
However I am pleased with the result and can't wait to see how this quilt is received by the 3 year old boy who will have it.  I only know of this little chap through his Mum's blog that I follow so hope they will both enjoy playing I Spy and that he will love being warm and cosy in the winter.

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Bento Blocks Quilt finished at last. Another UFO done

Well, where have the past five weeks gone?  Some sunny weather, gardening, weekends away catching up with old friends, and of course....... WIMBLEDON!!

I have been glued to the TV watching fabulous game after fabulous game.  Some amazing tennis this year and our  British Andy Murray eventually won the prize.  WELL DONE, ANDY!  You deserved it.

And while he was busy fighting to get his hands on the trophy I hand sewed the binding onto this quilt:

This is the quilt top I showed you way back at the beginning of June.  I finally hand quilted it in the ditch with a yellow/shocking pink/orange variegated Perle thread and found some similar sized buttons in my large button stash to embellish the centres of the blocks:

I am really pleased at how well this quilt came together.  I made one whole Bento Block that I kept for the corners, to add cohesion to the mass of different fabrics.
Thank you to the Group of fellow Bento Block swappers. I love all the blocks and think they look amazing all sewn together in this Riot of Colour.
I love everything about it: its vibrancy and happiness and of course the fact that I ticked off another UFO on my list.
Handing it over to my three year old Granddaughter this evening when I babysit and hope she loves it too.

And the all-important hand embroidered label:

Love the backing too, as Annalise loves her ballet lessons, being a fairy and riding on her scooter.
Well, back to the garden for a but more sun and sewing!