I’m not sure why but on Wednesday last week I suddenly decided to make my mother a quilt for her birthday. It had to be a quick finish as her birthday is today. Layer cake to the rescue!
I bought a layer cake of ‘Honey, Honey’ by Kate Spain quite a while ago. The prints are so cheerful and gorgeous, I absolutely love them. In fact, I decided while making this quilt that I have to try and find some yardage of some of the prints as I think they are p.e.r.f.e.c.t. I have yet to see a collection by Kate Spain that I don’t love but this one truly makes my heart sing.
Every now and then I pulled out the layer cake and wondered what pattern I should use to make a quilt. I put it back not being able to decide. Now that I knew I was making a quilt for my mother I had to come up with something. In the end I decided to go for big tumblers to let the fabrics do the talking.
A bit of washi tape on the ruler ensured that the angles were all the same. As some of the prints were directional I had to make sure I cut the tumblers the right way and I’m pleased to report I only made one mistake. As it was fairly early on I could swap that tumbler with one from one of the other rows and sort it like that.
The quilt was pieced with Aurifil 40wt (2021) and free motion quilted with my favourite Aurifil 40wt (4654). I did some big flowers, leaves and insects and added Little Miss Bossy-Boots’ and my name and the year. My fmq may not be perfect but, by Jove, I had a lot of fun doing it.
I love this quilt and I hope my mother does too (I might just steal it back if she doesn’t). The best thing? Kate Spain saw my picture on Instagram and wished my mum a ‘happy birthday’.
I just wanted to show you the finished mini I’m giving away over on Instagram (I’m Lemonshark if you’d like to try your luck).
This little mini was designed and made for the giveaway. I used some of my all time favourite scraps, such as Flea Market Fancy by Denyse Schmidt, Architextures by Carolyn Friedlander, Summersville by Lu Summers and some Tula Pink. You can’t go wrong with Tula Pink. The whole thing was pieced and quilted in Aurifil 50wt (no 2600, my favourite). For the quilting I did some stitching in the ditch and echoing as the quilt is busy enough as it is.
It was appliquéd on some grey Essex linen and bound with more of the yummy Tula Pink print I used. This mini mini finishes at 13,5″ and I’m in love with it. It’s going to be a little difficult to give it away but a promise is a promise.
I’m thinking of putting the templates for this mini up on the blog. This will then be the last pattern on here as I’m going to open a shop on Craftsy.
My nephew turned eighteen at the beginning of February and a few days earlier I decided that I was going to make him a quilt. A bit last minute, I know. It had to be a quick make and I thought a wonky plus quilt would be fun.
My stash has a lot of girly fabric in it so finding proper ‘man fabrics’ was a little difficult. I managed, however, to find some Architextures by Carolyn Friedlander and Curious Nature by Parson Gray. Some Kona solids in blues, greens, greys and off white, Sketch in two different greys and two fat quarters from my LQS meant that I had enough for a biggish quilt.
I really enjoyed making the plusses, eighteen in total, and the one equal sign. At first I was going to make all wonky plusses but after making nine or ten and laying them out, they were too busy for my liking. I decided to make eighteen plusses and leave the rest of the squares plain. In the end I added the equal sign; just because I can.
The quilting is straight lines 0.5″ on either side of the seam and then another two lines 1″ apart throughout the middle of the squares. I wanted to keep the quilt modern and, by not quilting too many lines, keep it nice and soft. The quilt was quilted with Aurifil 50wt in 5004, a dark grey, on the top and 2600 in the bobbin.
The backing is the oh so popular Britten numbers by Ikea. I thought it would fit this quilt perfectly. The binding is Pearl Bracelets by Lizzie House in Hi Ho Silver which I bought at Simply Solids.
I love this quilt and I really hope that Leon will too. He’s a great lad who asked me to teach him to sew before I moved to Switzerland. We managed to make a pin cushion and cushion cover which he literally finished minutes before the removal company arrived to collect all my boxes.
The quilt is a little smaller than I would have liked (Leon is tall) but I ran out of fabrics. In the end it finished at 57″ x 66″.
I’ve finished my Doll Quilt Swap 14 mini quilt and I’m really very happy with it.
The only thing I’m a little disappointed with is that I couldn’t do more quilting on it. Once I’d finished stitching in the ditch around the ‘bloom’ and the linen pieces my back gave out to me. I realised that I wouldn’t be able to sit at the machine much longer and therefore simply echo quilted around the bloom a few times. I quite like the simplicity of it, it really lets the fabrics do the talking.
The mini’s progress was stalled when I ran out of Liberty scraps that were big enough to finish the last few pieces. I ordered a mini bundle from Ali’s shop Very Berry Fabrics on Folksy and it arrived promptly a couple of days later. Thank you so much, Ali, for such quick service!
The Liberty Bloom is pieced and quilted with Aurifil 50wt, my favourite thread of all times. It finishes at 19″ x 19″ and has a scrappy Liberty binding which I am very partial to. I just hope my partner loves Liberty Bloom as much as I do.
The pattern for this mini will be added to my tutorials once my partner has received it as I’ve named it after her. I don’t think she reads my blog but it’s better to be safe than sorry and I don’t want to spoil the surprise for her. One of the fun things about theses swaps is that you don’t know what you’re going to get until you hold the package in your hands.
This was another projects on my FAL list and I’m so happy to be able to cross it off.
I enjoy a good swap and one of my favourites so far was the Doll Quilt Swap Round 13. The mini quilt I got was absolutely stunning and was one of the first things I hung up in my sewing room. When I saw that registration for round 14 opened I jumped at the chance to get another little beauty as those ladies are a talented bunch.
The mini quilt I did was an English Paper Piecing project that I found on the internet. As I couldn’t find the pattern I copied the design and drew the templates myself. I have since found and purchased it on Craftsy as I truly didn’t want to rip off the talented designer, Endulzar.
Anyway, I decided to go for another EPP project as I knew I was going to spend Christmas in Ireland and it would be great to sew a bit between eating turkey and Christmas pudding. I designed my own pattern on TouchDraw for iPad and will be adding the templates to this blog once I’ve finished the mini and am sure that everything fits and looks the way I want it.
This year I went for the classic combination of linen and Liberty Tana lawn. As I only had scraps, I went for a scrappy but ordered approach and got to the last two pieces before I realised that I didn’t have enough scraps to finish it.I have now ordered more from Ali‘s gorgeous shop on Folksy where all my other scraps have come from too. I can’t wait to get them and finish this mini.
Pieced, as always, with my favourite thread: Aurifil 50wt (colour no 2000).
Life here in Switzerland is still going in the slow lane. I have no internet, no phone and no tv at the moment and although I miss being connected to the quilting community I’m quite happy with the tv break. It’s funny how much more you can do when you’re not stuck to the laptop or tv (not that I watch very much tv in the first place).
However, I’ve been ‘stealing’ my mother’s wifi a few evenings last week and have been watching various courses on Craftsy, one of which is Ann Petersen’s Beyond Basic Machine Quilting. Yesterday evening I was watching her quilt fabulous feathers and was so inspired that I got my pencil and pad out and started practicing. This morning I sat down at my machine and tried to do it on a practice sandwich.
I used the Aurifil 50wt in 2024 that was already in my machine. It’s easy to see that the left side is easier for my brain to wrap itself around. My stitch length was also more consistent on the left.
I then decided to change to a slightly thicker thread and changed my top thread to Aurifil 40wt in 2150, a nice bright orange, leaving the white 50wt in the bobbin.
I love the thicker thread and am now itching to go and order lots and lots of different colours. Both these feathers were free form and I loved having a bit of ‘air’ between the fronds. However, I thought I really need to try them without space too and drew a circle on another practice sandwich. I was trying really hard to retrace my steps and keep the fronds together.
I first did the outside feathers and it’s fairly easy to see where I started in the top righthand corner. The inside was fine until I got to the last frond. Poor planning meant that my angle was off and it looks really messy. Alas, it’s only a practice piece and I don’t mind it one bit. After all, they do say that practice makes perfect and you learn from your mistakes. I’ve absolutely loved making all my mistakes and I now want to make a quilt that I can quilt with feathers in all shapes and sizes.
Ok, I’m off to watch the rest of my Craftsy course. I’m sure I’ll find more I need to try out soon.