Monday, 18 January 2016

CATCHING UP

Saturday Inspirations


I can't believe that we are into the third full week of the year already, and that I'm failing miserably with at least half of my New Year resolutions (sigh). We only have 23 sleeps until our first holiday, instead of losing 2 lbs a week I'm fairly sure I've put them on, I wasn't even looking at anything new until I had finished all my UFOs and existing commitments yet it would appear that I've accidentally on purpose signed up for 2 BOMs, but so far so good with updating the blog once a week so not a total loss.

This Saturday saw our first group meet up of the year, it was jam packed full of exciting news, lots of show and tell, oooohs and aaaahs over all our new purchases and of course an abundance of wonderful quilting.

First up is Val with this gorgeous quilt in a selection of Lynette Anderson fabrics, the design itself is very simple in its layout but works really well at showcasing the beautiful fabrics.






There were mixed feelings as to whether or not the pattern Val chose to have quilted, got lost in the overall design of the quilt and the fabric placement. We all thought it looked lovely, but I do understand that the idea or picture you have in your head of something doesn't always reflect the finished product in its physical form.






Caroline is still working on her amazing Bargello Quilt, you can find all the details about it here in one of my previous posts. 






Carrie has developed a taste for Pin Wheels and can knock them out at lightening speed, something I am very jealous of because they appear to be a process I just can not get my head around. Try as I might they never turn out right, my points get lost, they aren't matching in size honestly I give up with them, but Carrie has it mastered and they are gorgeous.






Although she is working on building up her stash of Pin Wheels it wasn't her task on Saturday. This week saw the return of one of our old favourites Saturday Stars, a class we all took together and where we all became friends, although most of us are nowhere near finished the mammoth quilt itself. It is a class that was put on at the Quilt Room in Dorking, although no longer running you can find the details of all their other workshops here. Like many people Carrie has a particular fondness for Moda fabrics which is reflected throughout this quilt.






Next up we've got Sue, who has been working on this amazing quilt called Stonefields by Susan Smith, originally a commission for a film it is made up of 121 different 6 inch blocks finishing 96" x 96" with a flying geese and hexagon border.




As far as I am aware this quilt is only available as BOM, if anyone knows if it can be purchased as a whole I'd love to know!! Sue purchased hers through The Running Chicken however it is no longer running. Sue has put some serious hours into this quilt so far and it really is a sight to behold....









 


Finally we turn to the efforts of Kerry Q, who has multiple projects on the go, as well as all her wedding planning (whoop whoop) I'm amazed she has the time to fit it all in. Kerry is working on a secret project for someone special using a mix of Cycles of Life by Maywood Studio and a selection of old shirts, so far her efforts look like this 




Kerry has also been working on restoring some little hexies she found with some things that belonged to her Nana, she's also been adding new bits to them and is thinking about making a cushion or two.






I have been working on some English Paper Piecing and hopefully I can share that with you later this week. 

Happy Quilting
Kerry xx



Wednesday, 6 January 2016

HAPPY NEW YEAR

Live, Learn, Love 


I know it's already the 6th (eeeek how did that happen) but technically I can still say happy New Year as this is my first post of the year, hopefully the first of many now that I have a much better system in place for planning and sewing.

It started a few months ago with my usual daily Instagram stalk, come on you know you do it to, there are some absolutely amazing things on there so much inspiration which in turn leads to many, many amazing projects and purchases. One of my other small obsessions just happens to be planners!! Planners, stickers, washi tape, note cards, pens you get the idea, I  love how creative they can be and how there seems to be this massive whole other world all about planners and making them art. If you are going to stare at the thing for hours and plan your life, it might as well be pretty and full of stickers right?? Anyway back to the stalk, I came across lots of planners that were being used and immediately wanted them all, as with most of the lovely things I want they are either only available in the US or outrageously expensive to try and get here, so I had to decide on just one. 





Enter the Get To Work Book designed and created by the fabulous Elise Blaha Cripe and is not only a daily planner but has several sections that can be used for goal setting and project planning as well. Many of the pages are graph paper which is perfect for drawing out quilt block ideas and there are also some pages of thick card stock which makes practising one of my other obsessions much easier......




Sharpie pen, Tim Burtonesque illustrations. Although I have only been able to use my GTWB for nearly 2 weeks so far I absolutely love it, there is plenty of space to make the pages pretty yet still get everything down that I need to plan my day, my week, my life and everything in between.

Last year was a jam packed year, I didn't always find enough time to get as much sewing and quilting done as I would have liked but I did manage to achieve some lovely things that I am very proud of:

1. The ridiculous amount of squares needed to make this centre Star




2. Being brave with my fabric choices for my first Mini Swap




3. Remembering how to put in sleeves for the costumes this loon needed for her first role in Panto (super proud sister moment)








I became a we (whoop whoop) and we celebrated some new arrivals, special birthdays, first experiences together, made some new friends and have made some exciting new plans for the start of a new year together, oh and someone else went and got themselves engaged whoop whoop Kerry Q!!












Last year really was a jam packed year with so much going on, I've learnt a lot about myself as one usually does, but I have also learnt things about other people which was harder to get my head around because I can't really make sense of how they tick. I guess the saying "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger" might just be true after all, although I am fairly certain that if I buy any more fabric I may be killed!! It's not my fault though, look at all these lovely things I have found that I absolutely need to try and make....... 















It's already shaping up to be a busy year and we are only the 6th day in, lets hope I can stick to my New Year resolutions of making more time to sew and planning my time better so I can fit it all in and complete more projects, otherwise there will be a multitude of UFO sightings in the South East!!

Happy Quilting
Kerry xx








Tuesday, 27 October 2015

MINI QUILT SWAP

Getting Back Into The Swing

All the way back in July I signed up to be apart of the The Easy Swap UK, that Nina over on BossyOz was hosting. The rules were fairly simple make whichever of the following you feel most comfortable with: Mini Quilt - 300 to 500 square inches, any shape
Zippered Pouch - any design but one zip must be at least 12"long or Tote Bag - to fit at least an A4 note book and to have at least one pocket. We had to fill in a questionnaire about colours, fabrics and designs we liked or were inspired by and things we would like avoided and then given a partner to make for.

The details of my partner at this stage I can't reveal because although I have received my wonderful mini quilt, I'm not yet sure my partner has hers. However I can tell you the guidelines I was given to work from: colours aqua, teal, low volume and purple, quilt blocks traditional (in modern fabrics), modern and/or paper pieced (foundation paper), to make them happy, please avoid sludgy colours, browns etc, batiks, civil war repros. Again all things I love and could absolutely pull off, in the form of a mini quilt.





This was my fabric selection for the mini, mostly bold Kono Solids as they best lent themselves to the Don't Call Me Betsy design I had chosen to make and casually threw in some modern funky prints just to mix it up a bit. 
I have to say I didn't get off to a great start with this one, the first part which just so happens to be the middle section had me at a total loss when trying to get the last bit in!! 






I when slightly off track and had to make some small adjustments to the pattern, but when it was all put together thankfully it couldn't be seen and made no difference to the overall design. After that it was plain sailing all the way, I know I am totally biased because paper piecing is just my most favourite thing, but having now tested out several of Elizabeth's patterns I honestly can not recommend them enough. The instructions are very clear and easy to follow, overall the designs come together quickly, there is so much scope to experiment with fabrics and the results are breathtaking.











There were a lot of different little sections that needed to come together, so like with many blocks the most time consuming aspect was cutting up all the squares and triangles, thankfully though with paper piecing accuracy of cutting is not essential!! 









Originally the design had an orange and yellow star burst effect exploding from the middle, however as I was not using either of those colours I amended the fabric and colour placement to make it slightly more modern....well in my opinion anyway.




As a large block all the sections came together rather quickly and thankfully near enough all my points and seems matched up beautifully, if you're a regular reader you will know that I often struggle with matching up my points but that steady progress is being made. With the top all complete and measuring 24" squared, all that was left to do was back it, quilt it and bind it.

















I absolutely loved making this mini quilt, the block has fast become one of my favourites and I will definitely be making it again, I have become a little bit obsessed (don't roll your eyes) with Medallion Quilts and this block might just become the centre of something I am planning. 
As I said at the start of this post my mini arrived today from the person who was given me and what a fabulous job she did!! My most favourite colours Mint, Coral and Grey in my most favourite designer fabrics Tula Pink. 




If you have been part of a this mini swap or another I would love to hear from you and see what you made and/or received.

Happy Quilting
Kerry xx

P.S In case you were curious everything is going wonderfully with my Special (squeal)