Scrappy Quilts in Progress

Monday, October 20, 2014

Fabulous Oakshott cottons

 Remember these gorgeous Oakshott cottons? I blogged about them back here and here,

Well I finally got my act together to complete this project this year. I had made a dozen or so 18.5" blocks of the 30 required when my trusty little electric Brother machine broke down.
The only way I was going to get this finished by my friends birthday in early October was to use my 1929 Singer 66K treadle machine which I acquired this July & hadn't quite mastered the art of treadling yet......... that soon changed!

The blocks are constructed individually quilt as you go method (I used Hobbs 80/20 fusible batting for this project) here's a quick photo record of how I did this. 

I would start with a simple pieced background using a couple of colours or some circle units made up of drunkards path blocks and add some straight line quilting to the background.  
The green section below
Next I would play around with placement of odd scraps/offcuts & folded 2"strips 
A bit more background quilting added here
more folded strips are added, careful placement of these secures the rectangle scraps added on top when the strips are stitched down
these are then pressed over & stitched in place
this vintage Singer machine really does stitch beautifully!

Sewing curves for the Drunkards Path blocks on the electric machine was easy following this great video tutorial I found on you tube, however this technique didn't work on the treadle, believe me I would need 3 hands!

After some practice  with scrap fabric, I mastered curves on the treadle: the secret? use lots of pins!
.......and before long, I was motoring away and was gradually running out of floor space to lay out these large blocks

Finally enough were made to complete the quilt. The blocks were joined together using my usual quilt as you go method (see labels on side for a link) with plain black sashing to try and add a little control to all this colour

 I have to mention here that all the credit for the inspiration of this quilt goes to Marianne of The Quilting Edge blog who very kindly gave permission to use her quilt as inspiration Thank you Marianne :)

and the leftovers?

Well I just couldn't let these go to waste now could I ? They were cut into squares & framed with a very pale grey (Kona shadow)

and over a couple of weekends, a lap size top was created

all with the treadle!

I have loved working with these gorgeous fabrics, Oakshott cottons have such vibrant colour & shimmer, can't wait to work with them again.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Time for an update

Just don't know where the time goes these days & can't believe it's been so long since I last posted something here.......but I haven't been completely idle!

The remainder of 2013 was busy sewing wise completing an order of baby quilts and tactile taggies for  the shop at Durrell.

Throughout 2013 I had been making quite a few Antique rose blocks by EPP which would be an ideal Christmas present for someone I know who loves polka dots

 These blocks are such fun to make & great for using up all sorts of scraps

It was a bit of a mad rush to get this quilt top completed & quilted in time. I opted for big stitch hand quilting with Pearl 8 cotton

........and chose to stick with hexagons for the border quilting

I just managed to complete it on time as the last stitch of the binding was made on 23rd December!

2014 so far .........

Remember this time last year I was up to my eyes in making Easy Street, which was a mystery quilt designed by Bonnie Hunter, well this top was chosen as a 60th birthday present for a special person & needed to be quilted asap

For this one I decided to hand quilt in concentric circles radiating from the centre of each main block & filled the gaps in between with concentric squares

I quite like how this one turned out, even though the patchwork design is quite busy with lots of piecing, the hand quilting still shows up well

I now have a new project on the go for involves hexagons & guess what EPP!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Scrappy Shirt Tails

I have a quilting angel......... a dear friend called Sandra who lives in Georgia & spoils me by sending me wonderful surprise  packages of recycled shirt fabric. 

Inspired by a quilt in one of Bonnie Hunter's books, I started making these star blocks, quilt as you go method. But........ you know me, after about 7 or 8 of them, I just got bored and  started playing with the fabric & making a mixture of different blocks, whatever took my fancy at the time.

Union Square
Sister's Choice
Ohio Star

Some are traditional & some just made up to fill the gaps where required. Not much maths has been involved in this process as I tend to get it wrong!
Beginnings of a layout
Planning another row to be added on the right

Of course, quality control has to be monitored at each and every stage!

Progress so far

For the "Quilt as You Go" sashing & backing, I'm recycling a cotton double size duvet cover that I picked up at a local charity shop for £2......good value or what?
The back
I'm trying to be as accurate as possible, but there are already and no doubt will be more missing points off stars, geese loosing the tips of their beaks etc, but I'm not too fussed about this as, after all, quilting is meant to be fun and not stressful. 

Whatever you're making, enjoy the process, 'till next time, happy stitching :)

PS. Apologies for the formatting on this post.....blogger's just not playing ball tonight!

Saturday, August 03, 2013

Scraps & Strings

Do you follow Bonnie Hunter on Quiltcam? Recently I've been watching & learning how she paper pieces scraps & strings onto paper & finally gave in to try some myself as I have a fair size tub of scraps accumulating.

Of course Lucy was there right in the thick of it helping pick out some strings and quite a mess was created!

Having experimented with a few sizes, I finally chose to cut phone book paper to 3.5" wide x 10.5" long for my strip piecing. Once trimmed & paper removed I added 1.25" black strips to each side & cut the points with my Companion angle ruler. Neutral triangles were cut with the same ruler from 3.25" strips & added to each side, the block was then trimmed down to 7.5" square.

The blocks are then joined together, either in rows or units of 4, which ever way you prefer to work....

Initially I was starting to use just the repro scraps but then decided to follow Bonnie's advice & mix it all up, even using smaller crumbs joined together to form a strip and odd left over half sq triangle units, 4 patches, whatever, you name it, in it goes!

If you just fancy mindless sewing to use up those odds & ends, this is a great project. I'm really enjoying the process and the end result :)

Since starting this, I've discovered that Bonnie has a free pattern for this (minus the black) on her blog here

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Hand Quilting

Where have I been you may wonder?
Well, remember these above? That became this below

I decided I wanted to have a go at hand quilting baptist fans on this scrappy repro log cabin in order to keep this quilt as traditional as possible.
I used these washable fine tipped markers and some circle templates to mark the rows of fans I didn't trust my skills at doing these freehand

Loving the look of these fans & the texture they create
Almost done......
Ta dah, all finished!
 and washed (the marker washed out perfectly)
 Look at all the texture, love it.
Here it is in all it's glory, this quilt finished at single bed/generous lap size, which was big enough for my first big hand quilting project.

Small Quilts

In between bouts of hand quilting I've managed to keep up with the Small Quilt Talk group monthly challenges set by Kathy Tracy:
April's challenge - Contrary wife block
May's challenge was a beautiful Sweet Pea pattern that Kathy designed and published the free pattern on her website here

..........and my interpretation of June's challenge, Flowerpot applique from her book, Remembering Adelia. A bit different to the original pattern, I admit I got just a little carried away doing my own thing here! lol
Here we have a possible layout of how I'm planning on joining these together "Quilt as You Go" method to make one large quilt. As I've mentioned before these little quilts are very good practice for improving my machine piecing and hand quilting. Odd orphan and play blocks are being used as fillers.

Hopefully it won't be so long before my next post, in the meantime, keep on stitching :)