Wednesday, 29 May 2013

CCCQ Block #8 Vincent Stubbs

Chester County Criswell quilt block 8

This block wasn't so difficult, as so often in life the thought of it was far worse than the reality. I did do a lot of 'stab stitching' in and around the curves and I deliberately chose a 'busy' fabric for the flowers to take the focus away from any potentially wonky curves.

Chester County Criswell quilt block 8

Chester County Criswell quilt block 8

The original quilt block had the cockscomb flowers as quite spikey with sharp points so I'm glad Sharon's pattern was curvy - just like a real cockscomb flower and easier to sew.

Google image

If you have also been procrastinating on this block I would encourage you to get it out and give it a go!

Sunday, 26 May 2013

Change of Direction

This has been a week of change for me because I have left my job and will be starting in a new position at the beginning of June. 

Cute card - thanks!
After a hectic week and a wonderful farewell on Friday evening I came home to two parcels in the post containing....

What great timing Australia Post! 
After nearly at the finish of Di Ford's Morrell quilt I was thinking that I wouldn't attempt another of her patterns as it just seemed all too hard but after reading  her 'Primarily Quilts'  there are at least two or three that I might just have to make. Also lots of inspiration in the Minick and Simpson duo's 'Quilts & Rugs' - just love the blue a white creations and decor.

Speaking of the Morrell, those pesky keystone blocks have still not been cooperating. This is despite Patti's excellent advice in a comment on my last post which for some reason I only half followed. So this quilt remained on the ironing basket this weekend. I remember reading somewhere that it's better not to fold a quilt (in progress or in storage) but to just leave it in a pile, anyway it's better than looking at un-ironed clothes!

Morrell quilt

So as well as changing direction with my career, this weekend I changed direction with my sewing away from the Morrell to finish binding the baby quilt that my sister and I designed and worked on together. I like to cut my binding strips 3" wide, fold in half (but not iron) and then sew a half inch seam on with my walking foot, using the edge of the foot as the guide.

Spot the Caravan quilt

 I don't use any pins but just move and hold the fabric as I sew. I also don't use any pins or clips when I hand sew the binding down, even when mitering the corners. I like the flexibility and it just seems to go together naturally. When hand sewing the back I pick up every machine stitch.

This method gives me a 1/2" binding with a neat finish on both sides.

Spot the Caravan quilt

Here is the finished quilt, any relatives in Western Australia, please look away now!

I like to call it 'Spot the Caravan'.

Spot the Caravan quilt

Feature blocks up close...

Spot the Caravan quilt

Spot the Caravan quilt

Spot the Caravan quilt

Spot the Caravan quilt

Don't they look great! 
I can't take any of the credit as my sister designed and pieced these blocks.

And finally the art shot (not!)...

Spot the Caravan quilt

I also went back to the CCCQ quilt to work on Block #8. I've been avoiding this block because of the curvy/spikey cockscomb flowers in the pattern.

Chester County Criswell quilt

As I was doing these leaves I was thinking how similar they are to the ones in Block #5 
I wonder whether it was the same designer?
Bye for now

Friday, 17 May 2013

Brain freeze

I have been working on the dog tooth borders for my Morrell quilt. 
I am doing it by machine using the freezer paper technique. 

Sarah Morrell quilt

I have done this technique for many of the block borders in this quilt, with some having a double or  triple dog tooth border so you would think I had this down pat but it still manages to do my head in - brain freeze!

Because it's kind of upside down and facing away I keep making errors, especially around keeping the right sides of the fabric together. 
Spatial relations is not a strong point of mine so I even managed to be-head a bird. 

Sarah Morrell quilt

I was going to leave it as one of my 'Amish moments' but then I had an email from Mayleen, hoping that I had enough fabric to fix it, which made me re-think and re-do it.
Much better now...

Sarah Morrell quilt

I think I've refined my steps as to when and how I cut the fabric so hopefully the rest will be more trouble free and I won't to do any more un-picking. 
My motto should be 'look twice and sew once'.

It's been fun getting out all of the red fabrics. I was considering whether to add some other reds but then decided just to stick to the ones used in the quilt.

Sarah Morrell quilt

I have also been hand piecing the keystone blocks but my points don't go together very well in the centre. I cut the pieces carefully on the bias and do half the 'circle' and then sew the two halves together. 

Sarah Morrell quilt

Any tips for getting the points to come together nicely?

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Come together

All my Morrell blocks have now come together - yay!! 
What a nice treat for Mother's Day.

Sarah Morrell quilt

It was difficult to photograph but I'm not going to complain about the lovely Autumn sunshine this morning.

Sarah Morrell quilt

Now to make the borders from red and cream (same as background fabrics) triangles. These will be machine pieced using the freezer paper method. Its fun getting out all the scraps of red fabric that were used in the blocks.

Sarah Morrell quilt

Someone kindly gave me the border freezer paper from the classes we originally took with Di Ford at Kaye's 'Needles and Pins' in Warrandyte. 
I think it was Dorothy? Anyway, many thanks.

Carpets of Autumn leaves in Melbourne's Fitzroy Gardens
Happy Mother's Day!

Sunday, 5 May 2013

More Morrell Progress

I have spent most of the weekend slaving over a hot sewing machine putting together the many blocks for my Morrell quilt. 
Happily some Autumn sun came into the sewing room and provided some natural light.

 The quilt has grown a lot and is now struggling to fit on my sewing table.

I have only got two more rows to go so hopefully this pile will be a finished top by the end of next weekend (sans borders).

I have been so focussed on the Morrell ( a good thing!) I haven't prepared any CCCQ blocks for hand sewing whilst I'm travelling on the bus next week ( a bad thing!). 
Oh well back to removing stabiliser from the Morrell broderie perse blocks instead (boring  but necessary!).
Have a great week.