Saturday, 19 July 2014

Rainbow Scrap Challenge 2014: week 29

In July THE colour is red.

I only made one red block last weekend, but managed to play catching up with some purple and green blocks. 

Cracker and Cactus pot
Calico Puzzle and Broken Dishes

I'm not happy with the Calico Puzzle block on its own; there is too much contrast between the greens. Maybe I'll remake it, but I'm going to wait and see how it fits with all the other green blocks. I also got quite a shock when I checked Angela's sampler index page this week and found the colour for May had been emerald green. That I'd missed somehow. I don't think many of mine qualify as emerald.

To see how other people have been busy with red blocks this week hop over to 


where Angela is hosting a linky party.

Happy Sewing


Saturday, 12 July 2014

RSC 14 week 28

Angela at Soscrappy posts block patterns for a rainbow sampler each week. These two blocks were from last week, and I made them a week ago.


There were two more blocks this week, but I haven't made them yet.

I'm sure other people have made the new blocks, so head over to Soscrappy

to have a look.

Happy sewing


Thursday, 10 July 2014

Finish Along Q3: proposed finishes.

Once again I'm participating in the Finish Along hosted by Katy at The Littlest Thistle.

Finish Along 2014

If you need help setting targets for finishing your handwork projects maybe this is for you too.

I have six projects for this quarter, including two left from last quarter:

1. Cardigan

I haven't touched it since I put it away after taking a photo of it three months ago.

2. Toadstool house
Toadstool House in July

I have done some work on it,

Toadstool house in April


 but hit a problem with the reverse appliqué for the windows.

fabric prepared for
the reverse appliqué
I can't see how I'm going to do it because the window panes are so small. My solution is not to do reverse appliqué at all but to tack the curtains in place on the outside of the house, and then appliqué them using a wide satin stitch which will serve as window frame. Only that's not the pattern, and not my reason for doing this: I want to improve my appliqué, and learn to use the appliquick tools. Can anyone point me to a tutorial on reverse appliqué that will solve this issue - the small space, and the right angles I have to work with?

I have added two more projects:

Cushion cover no. 1: centre
3. Three 16" square cushions
for the living room. I started one last weekend, but I need to buy dark blue solid for a narrow border, and white solid for the outer border and the back of the cushion. I also need to find a fabric suitable for backing the quilting. Does anyone have any ideas what I can use for this?

Cushion covers 2 and 3 are at the sketch stage.

4. Tulip mini
This is a kit for a doll's quilt I bought at a quilt show a few months ago. I haven't started it yet, but I don't think it will take long. It's part of the  Cat or Dolly Quilt Club from Birdblocks Quilt Shop in Amsterdam. (In the link scroll down past all the dolls and cats story and you'll see photos of some of the quilts). I'm just doing the one, even though I love them all, but I didn't want to commit to one a month. I shall use it as a wall hanging.

Further I have to do some serious practice on FMQ, and continue with my EPP and appliquéd medallion quilt, but that will certainly not be finished this quarter (or this year!).

Happy sewing


Saturday, 5 July 2014

Rainbow Red in July

The Rainbow Scrap Challenge colour for July is red. I have only made one block this week, although now I see that Angela has posted two more sampler blocks.

I struggled to match the points on this one and then gave up. I get 0/4 for points. (Don't tell me otherwise: I know!)

I thought it was great fun seeing 6 months' worth of Rainbow blocks from a lot of people last Wednesday. If you didn't see them then they are here at Soscrappy.

There are no rainbows here this afternoon, just plenty of rain!

I'm linking this post to Soscrappy 


so hop over there to see the fabulous blocks 
others have been making this week.

Happy Sewing


Thursday, 3 July 2014

Celtic Solstice finished

I joined the Finish Along at The Littlest Thistle for the second quarter in 2014 and my list of projected finishes is hereThis is my third finish for the Finish Along. I have no hope of finishing the other two projects. I will carry them over into the next quarter.

My version of Celtic solstice
Celtic Solstice was Bonnie Hunter's mystery pattern last November - December. There were five posts with instructions for five different 3" squares and a final reveal on New Year's Day. In the final reveal Bonnie gave instructions for putting all the 3" pieces into 2 different 9" square blocks, the layout and the borders. I finished on June 30 so it's taken me exactly six months to put it together! How some people manage a quilt a week I really don't know!

Pattern: Celtic Solstice by Bonnie Hunter
Size: 75" square / 191cm
Fabric: assorted scraps and Fat Quarters
Wadding: cotton (no details known)
Backing: "In the Bog" by Anne Ormsby for Clothworks (great fabric name if you're in the UK, but it doesn't smell!)

quilting on the centre
I quilted on my Bernina 440 QE using the BSR foot, using a freehand swirly pattern, making it up as I went along. On the whole I'm satisfied, but there are still strange hooky breaks in the pattern where I had to move my hands. I know I have to stop the machine, and then move my hands but still when I restart the fabric often pulls off in the wrong direction. 

detail of swirls quilting in the border

The swirls in the border were smaller, and better; I could manage one unit of the pattern without moving my hands.
detail of borders 
and pieced binding

In the border triangles I tried the technique I learnt from Angela Walters' Craftsy class, "Dot to Dot Quilting". Not exactly with success! Again the weight of the fabric tends to pull the needle off course. I guess I just have to keep practising!

I made the binding from left over pieces of the fabric used in the centre: width of fabric where I still had some, and otherwise half-widths from the few FQs still big enough.

Having taken lots of photos on the balcony in an effort to get the lighting right - spoilsports were the bright sun, a wall of white glass and an awful lot of sky - I took the quilt indoors and took one last shot which is really better than the rest as far as lighting goes. No artificial lighting; hand-held camera.

Even though I'm reading Ruth's Photo Friday Posts I don't seem able to cope with sun, sky and a white glass wall!

I'm linking to 
Lizzie Lenard Vintage Sewing for 

blogbutton photo peacockfmq025_zpse5bceb10.jpg

and Quokka Quilts for


This is my third finish in Q2 of Finish Along.

Finish Along 2014

 I'm linking my finishes to Katy at the Littlest Thistle. Click on the logo above to view other participants' finishes.

Happy Sewing


Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Rainbow Scrap Challenge: halfway marker

Angela at Soscrappy is organising a rainbow scrap challenge this year, and posting a number of 6" blocks each week which some of the participants, including me, are making. I'm glad she does the maths to make all the blocks finish at 6". Angela also chooses the colour each month which, in the first six months, have been:


Here are my blocks for the first half year:

I still have more blocks to make in most of the colours to maintain this layout, but I'm waiting until the end of the year to decide definitely.

I'm linking up with:

Soscrppy WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced Sew Fresh Quilts

so head over there and see what other busy fingers have produced.

Happy Sewing


Saturday, 28 June 2014

RSC Yellow Celebration week 26

Angela chose the colour yellow for June, and put up a number of sampler blocks. This week I made three, and as far as I know I'm up to date on yellow.

Here are my three yellow blocks:

Clockwise from top left: Economy , Fiesta (hence the celebration) and Butterfly
I'm really pleased with the Economy block which had always frightened me somewhat because of the complex maths (Pythagoras and all that jazz).

Last week Angela posted a link to a chart with the calculations for triangle sizes, and gave her own rounded up sizes. However I recently downloaded a free app for my iPhone called "QuiltingCalc: The Quilter's Little Helper" (for iPhone or Android) from Robert Kaufman Fabrics, which calculates the sizes for you. I used this, although it was necessary to calculate in two stages: firstly the triangles to make the outside square, and then the triangles for the middle square. In other words you calculate from the outside inwards, which is what we always do anyway!

This app not only helps in calculating economy block sizes, but also backing and binding. If you have a smartphone or tablet, I would recommend you take a look. It's free!

I think I would like to mark the halfway point in this year by taking a photo of all my RSC blocks so far and posting it next week. Does that seem like a good idea for everyone? As we still have a couple of June days left we might still be making yellow blocks over this weekend, or we can use the next week to catch up generally.

I'm linking up with:


Happy Sewing