Friday, 9 August 2019

2019 Wk 32 - mostly Kantha stitching

I have been finishing some projects ready for the village fair at the end of the month but have also been happily losing myself is stitching smaller portable projects just for fun.  The EPP sewing machine has started to be quilted with kantha stitches.  Defined as ".Kantha stitching is ...used to make simple quilts, commonly known as Nakshi Kantha. Women in Bengal typically use old saris and cloth and layer them with kantha stitching to make a light blanket, throw, or bedspread, especially for children." I think of it as stitches you don't need to think about: long or short, a bit wobbly, not quite parallel, not evenly separated. . .  who cares!

I am using the same dark colours for the stitches as are in the blocks, so it is fairly subtle

but you can see how far I've got looking at the back.

I also have worked on this piece: the Chertsey Museum ladies were making hanging pods this month, and I got the urge to Kantha mine to the nth degree!  This is the back

This is the front (we are calling the yellow a design feature not a I-didn't-have-enough-black-fabric-error!)

And this is the finished pod. 
Love LOVE LOVE it!!!

The ladies didn't get theirs finished so I am looking forward to seeing them at Show & Tell next month

I have finished the EPP-without-the-paper hexies, and have quilted the front much more than I would have done had it been any bigger!  I'm planning on  a few bigger EPPWP hexies for the other side so I guess I'll have to quilt that too then I can put it all together

I did make and finish this one though.  It's a lovely laminated fabric I got from Sewing Sanctuary at FOQ - she has designed the fabric, and had it laminated: it's lovely and soft.

Tuesday, 6 August 2019

2019 Wk 31 Festival of Quilts Day 2

After a reasonable night's sleep and a lot of talking Jackie and I headed back to Festival of Quilts.

I fell in love with another quilt - Jo Avery's Vintage Home - and was delighted to catch up with Jo at Aneela's book signing stall (eavesdropping on their chat and now name dropping!!!)

A bit more shopping found its way into my bag (thank you for the T-shirt Jackie)

And then Jackie and I ended the day by attending a class teaching EPP without the paper!!! This method is really good for the design where the hexies dont join

I love to learn new methods!

The tutor does her zips differently too - she joins the outer and lining fabrics first, presses them open, and then add the zip to the lining side

I got home in the evening to find that husband has been creative too - these blocks were duckboarding sold by Ikea for decking, but used by us in the bathroom until earlier this year.  They are now going to be attached to the garden table to replace (hide) the horrible wood that is there

Monday, 5 August 2019

2018 Wk 31 - Festival of Quilts Day 1

Woohoo - a weekend with Jackie, and with a zillion other (mostly) ladies in Birmingham.

Some stunning quilts were on show: This amazing piece was made but a lovely friend of Jackie's called Valerie

And a close up

And these next two are by the very talented Avril: a friend who also attends Richmond & Key Quilters

This circle was made from gathered fabric - gathered as if for smocking - I was desperate to touch it: a lovely piece of wall art, although the pleats must collect so much dust!!

These are dorset buttons: tiny ones about thumbnail size, mounted in plastic rings

After 14000+ steps, we went to the town to find out hotel,

and show our purchases

Tuesday, 30 July 2019

2019 Wk 30 - Catch up

We had a good turn out at the last Crafty Church: with people crocheting, cross stitching, sewing and a fair bit of chatting!  The red dress (middle top) and the gingham skirt (middle bottom) are the finished items from a month ago - can I remind you that the girls that created these are 10 and 8!!!!!

One of my Chertsey Museum ladies sent me this pic of her finished coffee cosy - now I wish I'd lined mine in the same fabric as the binding - it looks great!

In preparation for a few babies that are currently 'under construction' I have managed to finish two i-spy brick quilts: one purple and one grey

 And my senior citizen's class last week had 16 people concentrating very hard on mixing flour and water and birdseed!

 Lots of bird seed cakes got finished

and are looking good!

And totally NOT craft related, we went away for a weekend with friends for her 60th birthday: all 4 of us (she is their Godmother) and the three of them (we are their daughter's Godparents) and her boyfriend.  We had a really great time - these two (and the other 2 'children' and the two husbands, but I didn't get a pic of all of them) happily scaled trees and zoomed up cargo nets and down zip wires - me and Carol??  We held their bags and jackets at ground level!!!!

Monday, 22 July 2019

2019 Wk 30 - some progress

Thanks to the big horizontal surfaces we have at Crafty Church I managed to get three tops spray basted - I don't even think I showed this first one as a completed flimsy!  1767 hexies!!!

It has been spray basted onto a fleece blanket, and tacked around the edges, but quilting (it will be hand quilted inside the flowers!) is a hot task, so that will wait until the cooler months

Same with this one: fewer pieces (270 maybe?), and a smaller result (definitely just a lap quilt as I ran out of Australian fabrics and didn't want too much repetition) ), but spray basted onto fleece and waiting to be quilted

and finally this one has been spray basted onto just a cotton sheet.  It will be machine quilted but will have to wait its turn  (thank you Jackie for the gorgeous FQ pack!)

The reason the sunshine block will have to wait?  There are 4 brick wall i-spy quilts that have been cut and are being pieced, so the machine is threaded with grey until these are done - I have a stall at a village fair at the end of next month so I need to have some stuff to show and hopefully sell!!!

And because there has to be *some* EPP going on . . . I've started piecing this one

Tuesday, 16 July 2019

2019 Wk 28 - EPP Sewing Machine (and bird seed cakes!)

 Since I last blogged I have pieced this!

I was 'on duty' with M-i-L on Friday: hairdresser's appointment, visit to the Town Hall and a few other places on our list so I brought a new hand sewing project with me.  Clearly having the rainbow hexie flowers to finish piecing (just half a dozen flowers left) and the Plus Blocks (to *start* piecing) isn't enough EPP to have on the go at one time . . . , and Sharon gave me this FP so it would have been rude not to!  The colours, while muted, are brighter that I can photograph them.  No idea why!

Having done a couple of FPs in the last months, I wasn't feeling the love, so I decided to cut all the pieces out and EPP it instead.

On Saturday I had a break from the sewing machine as we had a family party: 20 or so of us at S-i-L's.  Three munchkins (well two plus Niki!) thoroughly enjoyed testing a paper-plate-weaving project me for

I then carried on with the EPP on Sunday.  There was a problem converting from FP to EPP: each thickness of fabric (as it wraps from front to back) adds maybe a mm to the width of the card template, so when a piece with lots of fabric pieces tries to match up with a piece with hardly any pieces the first is longer than the second.  Mostly the pieces can be eased / persuaded / bullied into fitting, but there was one place where it just couldn't - so I unpicked and trimmed 1cm off one template and it all fitted brilliantly!  I had already adapted a few pieces as they would have been two small.  I re-drew one and merged another two and abandoned another but I'm rather pleased with how it turned out

The lines here are shadows: I'm not yet sure how to quilt it.  Maybe just running stitch in muted pearle in the sewing machine and white for the background or maybe a mix of machine stitch and hand stitching?  Any suggestions?

Monday saw us spending much of the day back with this game old bird!

This is my gorgeous M-i-L who still lives alone without much help at 91.  The appointments of Friday, and the family party on Saturday took it out of her so she had a day in bed on Sunday.  However it also turned out that she hadn't eaten, had hardly drunk anything, had developed a hernia, had been sick . . . but hadn't wanted to bother anyone.  We finally got the Dr out to her who was very concerned about the hernia & sickness combination and packed her off to hospital.  They operated this morning and we are waiting to hear what they found.

My other making has involved bird seed.  Along with the plate weaving and a few other crafts, I am teaching bird seed cakes in a few weeks time.  Pinterest has loads of recipes but sadly they do not seem to work as well as the posters suggest!

Here are my samples: I used lots of different bonding agents: gelatin (to bloggers instructions 1:100), jelly (orange flavoured!), suet, gelatin (to my instructions - 1:10), flour and water, egg whites - and hope that (a) one of them sets enough to work and (b) I can remember what I did on that one as I didn't think to write anything down!!!

Finally - just looking at this puts me into a very happy place!  It's a quilt that Jackie is currently finishing and I just love the calm colours and the beautiful blocks!  Well done Jackie!

Friday, 12 July 2019

2019 Wk 28 Serendipity!

I went for a job interview earlier this week: at a local university (Royal Holloway) which has recently opened a new library, named after Suffragette Emily Davison.  She was probably best known for being killed by a horse at a horse race.  She had attended Royal Holloway University.

The interview seemed to go well, but I have no idea how I did compared to the others who applied - however even if I didn't get the job it was worth the trip as I got to see a fantastic triptiage wall hanging depicting Emily:

and I got a few zoomed in pics of the quilting

I could have spent hours just looking at it!!!

And outside there was a gorgeous patch of wild flowers

I had to leave eventually though!!!  Having been to Richmond and Kew on Monday I had some selvedge edges donated by the lovely Plum, which I sat and added to previous donations

I have enough now to do something with - I just need to be inspired!!!