Sunday, 30 October 2011

Fear of Quilting

I love sewing the quilt tops but I am terrified of the quilting. When making my first ever quilt I had so much trouble quilting it that I decided I would always send quilts to the long-arm quilter to be quilted instead of doing them myself. However I soon realised this was a hugely costly decision and I would have to learn to do them properly myself. I have several tops that have been languishing in my pile of unfinished objects gently nagging away at me everytime I begin a new project, buy new fabric or download a new quilt pattern.

I decided to research quilting properly, went on a free-motion quilting class and then this week I decided to begin quilting one of the quilts that I thought would be most straightforward i.e. it is made up of lines and I was planning on quilting it with my walking foot in straightlines. (I'm still scared to start free motion quilting - I'm only going to be able to overcome one fear at a time!).

With some help from the kittens I pinned all the layers together and prepared the quilt for quilting. I used a gorgeous cotton sateen for the back. I chose it just because I liked the design but I could not have chosen a better fabric if I had tried, it is absolutely dreamy to sew. With some trepidation I began the quilting and was suprised to find that it was ok. Time consuming, about an hour to quilt each block and I have done three hours so far but really not as bad as I feared.

Like so many things in life the fear was worse than actually getting on and doing it. Luckily I had the ever-helpful Honey on my side as you can see below. The quilt is not finished but is on it's way. I don't think I'm ever going to be able to quilt for more than an hour at a time but I think if I do a block a day it should be done by the end of the week - fingers crossed.

Friday, 28 October 2011

Sewn Spaces Swap - pincushions

I signed up for the latest Sewn Spaces Swap, making pincushions. I've already done the sewing machine cover and needlebook swaps and couldn't resist the pincushion swap. My partner wanted a green pincushion with hand embroidery and "nothing cutesy". I had plenty of green fabric since my sewing cover partner also liked green (not my favourite colour so I went out and bought some which has come in pretty useful for these swaps). I spent ages poring over my partners mosaic but still couldn't decide what to make. In the end I went for tiny patchwork using green with some black and white sewing themed fabric.

I made some piping to go around the top and because my partner wanted hand embroidery I stitched the word "pins" then had no idea how to incorporate it into the pincushion. I really should plan these things rather than making them up as I go along! In the end I used it as the back although it went a bit wonky when I added the button.

After I finished I worried that the patchwork was too cute - not what my partner wanted. Just to be on the safe side I decided to make another pincushion using some natural linen I had with some more embroidery. So I made this

I used some Amy Butler fabric and this Life is Beautiful ribbon you can see in the close up below.
 It is probably even more cutesy than the other pincushion but I hope my partner likes it. It is hard to know what someone considers too cute, I think pink cupcake pincushions would be too cute I'd like to think these are just modern and a little bit funky perhaps. Fingers crossed for a happy partner.


Thursday, 27 October 2011

Pretty Little Pouch Swap version 2

So once I completed my pretty little pouch I decided I would make another pouch in a larger size. I went over to  Keykalou and downloaded the inset zip pouch sewing pattern to make this pouch

I went a little crazy with the pretty stitches I can make on my sewing machine but hope I stopped myself before I got totally crazy, I was tempted to do rows of every type of stitch in rainbow colours but I had to rein myself in, those leaves are so cute I think (i'm not even gonna mention the little pucker in the top right hand corner - it was tough getting the top of it around the sewing machine)

So my little pouches are all ready to go, I hope my partner likes them!

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Pretty Little Pouch Swap

So I finally plucked up the courage to join the pretty little pouch swap over at Flickr. After admiring all the pouches for so long I just had to join and I'm really loving seeing all the amazing pouches people have made.

My partner likes bright colours and Heather Ross fabric. I have never used any Heather Ross fabric before, I admire the designs but there is something about them that just isn't quite me. I really wanted to make something my partner would love so I went out and got some. The fabric was really lovely to sew with and I'm pleased with how it came out. I love making these little snap frame purses. I'm thinking of doing a tutorial to show how to make them. They are pretty easy really but look quite professional with the shiny silver frame.

In other bag making news I have joined the Goodie Bag Swap round 2, become obsessed with pink tweed fabric after seeing a pink tweed sofa that I could never afford and started on a pink tweed bag and am trying to find the perfect bag pattern for some lovely Liberty fabric that has been languishing for too long in my stash.

Speaking of stashes my new niece (as yet un-named) arrived this morning. Yay! I have an opportunity to use up all the pink fabric!!! And of course welcome to the world little un-named one!

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Blimey where did September go?

Gosh, that month just flew past without a minute to blog! I blame a combination of return to work, an inspection at work, cough, cold, laryngitis while trying to work and be inspected and trying to do too much craft. I am pleased at least that I got some things done, including;

Making these awesome cupcakes at the make lounge (craft heaven), they are too pretty to even nibble!

Finishing all my blocks for the 3 x 6 Bee, I'm not gonna lie these were really hard work - next time I'm picking an easier block.
3 x 6 Bee Blocks
For Erin
For Rhonda
For Kari

For Amie
For Brenda
For Elaine

I also made these blocks for the Sew Modern Bee

 I also made a baby bag for my sister who is having a little one in a couple of weeks (and stupdily forgot to take a picture  and did a maching quilting class, more of that in the next post, this one is far too long already.