My sewing space hasn’t seen too much of me the past two weeks. It’s spring holidays here which means my five year old is home from Kindergarten and we are all making the most of the beautiful spring weather that we’ve been having. Temperatures are unseasonally warm so instead of sewing we’ve been sowing. The boys have their own veg garden and I have reclaimed my greenhouse which was sadly neglected for over a year.
There have been trips to parks and the zoo as well as lots of playdates in the sunshine. All in all I couldn’t have asked for a nicer couple of weeks. And although I’ve not got much sewing time I don’t mind as there are only eight days to go till I head off on sewing retreat.
Now while I am mostly organised for said sewing retreat, the one thing I am missing is a good way to transport my sewing machine as I will be taking the train. I had a look for sewing machine bags but couldn’t find anything I liked, or anythign that didn’t cost the earth so I had a quick look online and came across a great tutorial on Sew What? by Debbie Shore. Being me I had a quick read through the tutorial, then went off to design my own bag based on Debbie’s idea. As soon as I had decided I was going to make the bag I instantly knew what fabric I was going to use.
I’ve had this bundle of Keep it Sassy sitting in my stash just waiting on the perfect project and this is defintiely it. Sunday evening I quickly got measuring (my machine) and cutting into the fat quarters and started sewing the outer cover of the bag. That started to come together pretty quicky but then I discovered I was out of the fusible fleece interlining I wanted to use and so I had to put it all aside till I got to the fabric shop. Not to be idle I decided I would make a quick lined and reversible tote from part of the panel that came with the Keep it Sassy bundle. It is going to be perfect for packing one of the projects I want to bring on retreat.
Although I got to the fabric store on Monday I’ve not had a chance to get back to the bag till now. I’ve finally added the fleece interling and straps to the outer cover and the zipped section is all ready to add.
Isn’t it looking wonderful already. These fabrics really are so much fun, I think I’ll be using the rest of the bundle to make more bags, totes, buckets and the like. As we’ve more trips planned over the next couple of days I’m not sure I’ll get back to finishing this bag till next week, but one way or another I’m sure I’ll get it finished in time for my trip.
Linking up with Lee’s Work in Progress Wednesday over at Freshly Pieced. Hope to see you there.
I’ve been English Paper Piecing again. I took a break from the butterflies to create a dragonfly. I put aside the Libery lawns in favour of some batiks.
I created the dragonfly using EPP techniques. The body section is composed of seven individual pieces, each pair of wings is made up of 21 pieces and combines three different fabrics.
For the quilting I decided I would simply stitch overlapping spirals. The end result, although not quite perfect, is effective in adding a fluidity to the background.
While stitching the inner parts of the spirals was easy it became more difficult to track their progress as they passed through the dragonfly. When I do this again, which I will, I will make much greater use of my magic pens in sketching out the more difficult parts of the spirals before I stitch them.
Despite this one little hiccup I am still more than pleased with how this mini quilt, “Flying in Circles”, has turned out.
This little beauty has soared off to a new home, but I don’t think it will be the only dragonfly that I will create. The freshwater biologist part of me has always admired these beautiful creatures and I am rather in love with the idea of having one all of my very own.
Linking up with Sew Cute Tuesday over at Blossom Heart Quilts and this month’s “in hand” EPP link party over at Splish Splash Stash.
In just under three weeks I’m off on my first ever sewing retreat and I can hardly wait. Patchwork in The Peaks 5 is an Alpine Quilt Retreat being hosted by the lovely Elita from Busy Needle Quilting and it sounds like it’s going to be the perfect weekend getaway.
One of the workshops that we’ll be doing at the retreat is the “Peaks Mystery Quilt”. We’ve been sent the fabric requirements and instructions on two steps to complete before we arrive at Peaks but that’s all we know about this mystery project. In addition to fabrics for sashing, borders, binding and backing we were to select a focus fabric and up to five coordinating fabrics for our quilt. So I went through the list of requirements, went through my stash and decided I was going to use fabrics from Sandy Gervais’s Snap Pop range as I have a nice selection in my stash.
I ordered some extra coordinating fabric I would need for the borders and then once I had everything in place and was ready to cut and sew the pieces in the two steps we were to complete before the retreat I threw all my plan out the window and started ove. Why? Because of three little words, those three little words that just melt your heart: “I love you”.
I should explain. Yesterday I was discussing the retreat on the phone with my Mum and when I got off the phone my five year old son told me tearfully that he didn’t want me to do away for so long. When I told him he would have great fun doing lots of activities with his Daddy he said he knew and that he was looking forward to that but he still didn’t want me to go. When I asked him why he simply said “Because I love you”. There were hugs, and chats and more hugs and he’s slowly coming around to the idea. I have now decided that I am going to make the mystery quilt for him for being so brave and letting Mummy go away for a whole weekend.
This morning was the last morning of Kindergarten before the spring holidays and I decided it was the perfect oppertunity to get all organised while my little man was out of the house. I quickly went through my stash and pulled out a fat quarter bundle of Stonehenge Out of This World by Linda Ludovico for Northcott Fabrics.
I got cutting and sewing and the first two steps of the project have been completed. The pieces and the remaining fabrics are all safely packaged up out of sight and ready for the retreat. I’ve put in a last minute online order for some border and backing fabrics (last minute because post from the US can be slow at times) and hopefully by the time I return home I’ll have a wonderful quilt to gift my little man. I am making the wall hanging size, but at 41.5″ square I think it will make a perfect lap quilt for him for now. Perfect for cuddling up on the sofa reading books or watching the odd movie.
I’m fairly excited and intrigued by this project. Oh, and did I mention that some of the fabrics from the range glow in the dark? Not only that but the sashing fabrics does as well! I think I can defintiely say this finished quilt will be “Out of This World”.
Linking up to Can I get a Whoop Whoop? over at Confessions of a Fabric Addict as this is defintiely something that makes me happy today.
Rachel over at Stitched in Color is holding another of her seasonal mosaic competitions. The theme of this particular competition is “Ethereal“, to pay homage to pastel hues. Entering is simple – you simply use the free Mosaic Maker tool to create a mosaic of 12 fabrics from Lark Cottons that you feel fit the theme. There will be 2 winners chosen and the prize for each is a fat quarter set of their winning mosaic fabrics.
As we can enter up to two mosaics in the competition I have created two contrasting selections. The first is “Pastel Strength” and for it I’ve chosen fabrics with strong pastel hues throughout.
My second mosaic is “Light and Airy” and in this one I’ve opted for plenty of low volume and geometric prints.
What fabrics would you choose? If you are interested in creating your own mosiacs then why not pop over to Stitched in Color where you can read all about the competition and link up your completed mosaics.
As the Quilty Bucket List blog hop enters its fourth and final week I have decided it’s about time for me to get my Quilty Bucket List written up. I’ve been meaning to do this since I first read about The Quilty Bucket List at the start of the month. For those not familiar with the bucket list it’s the wonderful idea of Stacey from The Tilted Quilt. She has been hosting a month long blog hop to encourage everyone to write and share their own Quilty Bucket Lists. From Stacey’s description these lists should be of “the quilts that we all have on our lifetime to-do list…. or it could be something quilt-related that you want to accomplish”
So here it is: my Quilty Bucket List. These are quilts that I would very much like to make, and they are all my own designs. Ever since I first started quilting there is one thing that has been clear to me, I am definitely happiest when I am working on my own designs. I have tried, and I feel failed, to make the deigns of others which is probably why, for example, the Swoon quilt I intended to make remains at the single-block-completed stage for close to a year.
Now it is time for me to look at this block from a completely different point of view. This is no longer an orphan Swoon block but rather the starting point for …
This quilt will feature the fabrics from the New Leaf collection by Daisy Janie. I fell in love with these fabrics when I first saw them and still want to make something special with them so I will make use of the block that I have, add several more of my own design to create “Repurposed”.
The second quilt on my list is “Starburst”.
This is a design that I created last year, andhave even begun to sew. Progress stalled when I had to order extra background fabric and other than that there is no good reason why it has not progressed beyond the completion of the first trial section.
The third, and final, quilt that I am going to add to the list is a Liberty lawn quilt. As I slowly build up my stash of Liberty lawns I am ever more attracted to the idea of creating a quilt with these beautiful fabrics. I’ve been playing around with some of my block designs and a random selection of Liberty fabrics and the results so far have only enforced this idea for me. This is not the final design, but it is as good a starting point as any.The last item on my list is not to make a quilt but to someday maybe help my son/s to make his/their first proper quilt/s. At the moment my eldest son is five and he loves to sew with me. For as long as he is interested I will encourage him and teach him. He has already quilted two small quilts for his teddies and if at some time in the future he decides he would like to make something larger then I will be there to help and encourage him as he does so, just as I will be for his little brother if that is his wish.