Friday, September 23, 2011

Taking ten...

Every year a local charity group, The Blue Angels, have a quilt exhibition in a local hall. Its a terrific weekend. They also have a "challenge" associated with it, and this year it was to make a 10" quilt with the theme "10", and it had to include some blue.

Made in a bit of a rush, yesterday afternoon, this was my contribution... Inspired by our recent trip to Hamilton Island,I'm not much of a pictorial quilter, I'm afraid, but it was a bit of fun to have a go.

I was pretty proud of my 3D palm leaves though!

Have a great week!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Finished Bag

Just back quickly to show you the finished bag I made for Gorgeous Girl's 11th she is being a hand model...

Thanks to Lzi and Vanessa's help for solving my ugly stitches problem. They suggested buttons..which definitely looked better and would have looked great if I hadn't waited until 10.00pm the night before to sew them on...realising they were a little too small to cover all the stitches...hmmmm...

And here is the first block I have made for my Travelling Circles Bee. Fabrics all supplied by the wonderful, and very organised, Sarah.

And up close of a favourite circle..

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Spiked Wheel/Chunky Dresden Tutorial

This is the block I have chosen for the Travelling Circle Bee I have joined. I'm not sure of it's traditional name..anyone have any ideas??

So who’s up for some English paper-piecing? For those of you who have tried this technique before please just jump right in and ignore my laborious instructions. I have written them with a beginner in mind.
1. You will need 10 pentagons, ten scraps of fabric and a background square.I used 2 " pentagons purchased from here , four inch scraps and a 15" background fabric square. Cut out the fabric for the pentagons to allow a ¼ inch seam allowance around the edges. This does not have to be super exact; I just do it by eye. Cover the ten paper pentagons with the fabric by using either of these two techniques:-
Using a Sewline Pen This is my preferred technique, it is super quick and easy but requires the pen.
Basting the fabric on -

2. After laying out the finished ten pentagons in a circle in a “pleasing arrangement”, start to piece them together.

Begin by taking the thread behind the seam allowance on one pentagon, this leaves the end neatly tucked away.

3. Taking two pentagons, whip stitch the two pieces together, starting with 3 small stitches at the beginning of the seam, and the same when finishing at the other end, to help strengthen those areas. Make sure that as you whip stitch the two pieces together, that you are not sewing the cardboard templates inside.

4. Pick up your next piece and add it onto the first two. Sometimes you can just feed the thread from the previous seam through to the next corner (running behind the seam allowance), rather than cutting it and having to start off again.If doing this remember to do the three tiny stitches at the start of the next seam again
5. When all ten pentagons are together, press really well.

6. Take an 8" plate and use it as a template to cut out the centre of the wheel. You can either use the Sewline pen to attach this onto the backing fabric or do a quick basting thread. (To get it dead centre fold the backing fabric into quarters and iron to form a crease, then do the same with the circle. Then just line up the fold lines!)
7. To attach the pieced circle by machine, gently remove the paper pentagons. You may need to gently peel off the seam allowances from the cardboard.Each time you remove one, give it another bit of a press. This keeps the seam allowances tucked away, as they should be.

8. After removing all the paper templates, lay the pieced circle on top of the centre circle, pin very well and stitch down.

9. To attach the pieced circle, I used a small zigzag in light grey thread, but it really doesn't matter what method you chose.

Alternatively, if you’ve been enjoying hand sewing, then hand appliqué the pieced circle onto the background. For this method, leave the papers inside the pentagons, sew around the outer edge, then sew around the inner edge, taking each paper out as you reach it.
10. Well, done. You’ve finished!

Monday, September 12, 2011


A little background...
Each year I like to make my Gorgeous Girl something for her birthday. (see previous efforts here.)She turns 11 on Thursday so late last week I grabbed my left over scraps from a Sherbet Pips quilt I have started and decided to make her a bag. In particular a bag to take to her sewing class that she goes to at our LQS.

Now, I've made a bag all of once before, but I thought, hey, how hard could it be?? and set off without a pattern. I like to think of this fitting into my spontaneous trait..other's may think of it as the poor planning part of my personality!

Everything was going swimmingly - nice little pockets on the outside to hold a ruler...

Pockets on the other side to hold rotary cutter, scissors etc..

and a little pocket inside that some may think looks like it would hold a mobile phone, but since I am an old-fashioned mother who thinks that 11 is too young to have a mobile phone, will be where a packet of tissues could live. (yes that's right, I give my 11 year old a rotary cutter but say no to a mobile phone...the world is full of contradictions, isn't it!! ;-)

Then I came to realise that all of my bag wadding inside this bag was creating a bit of "bulk", and worried how I was going to attach the handles (as I intended to make fabric handles)..sewing through 6 layers was going to be a nightmare. And then I saw these...

They have little punched holes on the handle attachments that makes it easy to sew onto the outside of the bag. No having to attach them through the top seam. Yay! So I happily finished off the bag and then went to sew on the handles. And then I sew them on with nice red thread meant that on the inside I was going to have very obvious red stitches on the lining! Ahhhh!! I then realised that probably I should have sewn the handles in before sewing the rest of the bag together..doh!

Does anyone have any solutions (besides unpicking the outer and lining layers??)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

A quilt for Sophie

Been a bit missing in action on the blogging front but sometimes I find I need to get off the computer to actually get some sewing done, so that's what I've been doing!Funny that!

As previously mentioned I have had two new nieces born in the last month so have been trying to whip up a few easy quilts for them.

For my niece, Sophie's quilt, I got this pile of Riley Blake's range "Happier" in the blue and green colourways....

but then realised that even though I'm not much a pink girl most little girls are so I got these from my stash (it includes a lot of a Ginger Blossom fat quarter stack)

Then I just cut some 4 1/2 inch squares, sewed them in strips and separated them by pink dot fabric.

Some of the fabrics in the Happier range are so cute but this is my favourite.

So sweet, it could make your teeth ache!

I'm also madly sewing a block for my Travelling Circle bee and then I need to get organised as October is my month!

And somewhere in the next couple of weeks I need to make a Boorolong Frog and Jewel Beetle costume for a play for school. Shouldn't that be fun??!! (sarcasm)

Hope you're having a good week!