I love bright colours and picked bright orange and pink when I started my latest project. It was slow going. More because I didn’t take the time to work on it, than because it was complicated or that I wasn’t sure about it. I loved it from the start and never got to that ‘meh-stage’ that I usually get somewhere in the middle of a project. All in all it took me more than a year.
This project bag has been a blessing as my project was always ready to take to work, so I could sew whenever I had a minute or two.
This piece doesn’t have a name yet, which is highly unusual for me. I usual call my patterns or projects something, even if it is really banal such as ‘The Purple Quilt’ or ‘The Green Cushion’.
On the day I was appliquéing the finished EPP piece onto the background, I was actually wearing an orange t-shirt, pink trousers and my mustard shoes. It did make me laugh and I was wondering if I should turn this into a trend and only work on my various EPP projects when I’m dressed appropriately.
I enjoyed seeing this piece grow. I never plan my pieces in advance but just work in ‘rows’ or small sections, auditioning fabrics. It sometimes happens that I unpick and change fabrics but very seldom and I usually realise it before I’ve sewn on all the pieces.
Olive had to help, of course. This cat is driving me bananas! She’s the cutest, most loveable kitten one could wish for but she does destroy a lot. Together with her ‘brother’ she’s destroyed most of my plants and pots, she chews on all the pencils (I hide them), she finds and kills my woollen socks, hats and scarves (it’s a good thing I have an endless supply as my sister is a very talented and prolific knitter) and sits on every plate or bowl I get out to put food on. I do, however, forgive everything as her face lights up and she runs towards me with the cutest little meow whenever she sees me. She sleeps in my bed and every morning I’m greeted with enthusiasm.
I’ve attached the piece to the background and am now going to turn it into a tote bag. I always end up making cushion covers, but how many cushions do I really need?
The pattern for this piece is part of a very exciting project and will be available at a later stage.
I love EPP because it’s portable. I can sew at home on my sofa while watching tv or I can take it with me on holiday. I can sew on the train, in the garden and many other places.
However, I’ve now started a project that is EPP but most definitely isn’t portable. My Floral Star quilt started with a stack of fat quarters I was gifted by my lovely friend Paula. She knows how much I love anything designed by Kate Spain and I was thrilled to bits when she gave me her stack of Canyon fabrics. I knew I had to make something special with it and decided to try and supersize one of my designs. The choice fell on Floral Star and I couldn’t be happier so far.
The colours aren’t the same in my version so it looks quite different.
As you can see I’m not finished yet. I had to let Charlie sit on it as no one really understood just how big it is already. I don’t mind, though, as he is the cutest cat in the whole wide world. The smallest piece is about 3.5″ x 4.5″, most of them are over 7″. It’s quite a challenge but fun too. I had to use slightly thicker paper as normal 80g/m copy paper bent too easily with such large pieces. It makes the whole thing harder and heavier to handle so I can only work on it when I’m sitting on the floor or at a table.
Since taking this picture I have finished sewing on the magenta triangles and am now going to continue with some green, I think.
If you’re on Instagram you can check out my progress with the hashtag ⌗sharksdinnerfloralstar
I like having an EPP (English Paper Piecing) project on the go at all times and I am constantly designing new ones in TouchDraw on my iPad. This summer I went off to Norway and decided to start ‘The Big One’, a quilt for me which Little Miss Bossy-Boots has named ‘Magical Diamonds’. It’s going to fit my queen size bed and I’m using some of my all time favourite fabrics, Denyse Schmydt’s Florence and Oakshott shot cottons in blues and greens.
I wasn’t sure at first how to place the fabrics but then decided to use the Oakshotts as a sort of frame for the prints. I was so excited about this project that I started before travelling and ended up with two very quickly. Each segment is 10″ x 14″, so they’re quite big.
Once I arrived in our cabin in Norway I set up my little work station outside. I was blessed with the most wonderful weather.
I continued sewing a little every day if I wasn’t reading or cycling to the shops or the beach.
This is what they are going to look like: 48 of those segments sewn together like this. I’m still thinking about colour placement but as I have a few more – 41 to be exact- to do, I have some time to think about it.
This, by the way, was my view while sewing. I have to admit that I was distracted every now and again. Especially when big boats were passing.
It was a most wonderful and relaxing holiday. I managed to sew five segments which was less than I had hoped for but I also read four books and cycled quite a few kilometres. Bliss!
English Paper Piecing (EPP) is something I have seen but never tried. However Katy from I’m a Ginger Monkey (I know, I know, she’s mentioned on this blog every few minutes… I admit it, I find her incredibly inspirational) has been very busy paper piecing the most wonderful cushion covers and quilts.
Curious I went on the hunt for some nice shapes to try out EPP and found the tumbling block. It makes a lovely star shape when sewn together and that is what I did. I didn’t like it. I probably would have loved it if I had done it scrappy but I did it all pink and as I looked at it I felt bored and uninspired.
Out came the seam ripper and the star was no more. I then started playing with the shapes and colours until I found a pattern I liked. Sorry about the bad pictures but they were taken late at night on Instagram.
Next I decided to add some white in the centre and also use the white to frame all the blocks.
I’ve been sewing together my tumbling blocks every time I have a spare moment and the project is growing rapidly. This is going to be a cushion cover and it’s going to be mine. Little Miss Bossy-Boots has tried to claim it but this time I’m not giving in. Hands off, it’s mine! Mine!