Sunday, April 13, 2014

A Finished [Easter] Fox

I straight line machine quilted the fox yesterday on the diagonal through the crosses. The backing and the binding come from Spotlight.

It's still summer-like in Auckland, so it has been washed and dried today. Looking at the long-range forecast - the rain is due to start on Thursday. Just in time for the school hols. Perfect!

Details for Mr Fox can be found at Making Life Prettier and at Pile o Fabric.

I am taking a pile of unfinished quilts to Carol in Onehunga tomorrow after school to be quilted. I do love handquilting, but some of these have been works in progress since May 2011 and it would take me a couple of years to get them finished! (And I don't really even like the top one anymore so I don't want to spend ages finishing it.)

I can't bring myself to send my oldest WIP in for quilting. My stitchery quilt I finished in 2010. Maybe I will quilt it when I finish my Circle Game quilt, although I am planning to make Kim McLean's Lollypop Trees my next big project.

In the hols I am keen to try an equilateral triangle quilt like this one Linda is working on, as well as making progress with the Circle Game. A puffy 'April' block is bugging me. I have some unpicking to do I think.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

A Second Shirt for Lucy

I got Baby Lucy's second shirt finished recently. After cutting two right sleeve plackets I decided just to sew up the wrong placket and re-cut it in the right place. You can see the mistake if you look for it, but given the floral fabric ($6 at Spotters) and fact she will be wearing this under a jersey or cardi in winter, I am not too worried.

I love the Peter Pan collar and the pin tucks.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

A Fox in the Garden

Not a real one. This is New Zealand - we don't have any wild critters or snakes. Thank goodness. I don't like it when birds accidentally fly inside, not sure what I would do if something wild came inside. I would probably have to move out until it did.

Anyway, the top of the fox quilt is done. It is quite a good size. I was worried about it being a bit useless. I am no longer worried. I just hope Lucas can 'see' the fox!

Given Easter hols are eight days away (is it really the end of Term 1 already - I feel like I have just got started!), I will get this machine straight-line quilted this coming weekend.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

An Inverted Star for the Door

I made this back in January on the spur of the moment. I ordered some fabric from somewhere online and they also do scrap packs, so I ordered a scrap pack as well. I thought the scraps would be useful for my Circle Game quilt. It was a generous scrap pack in that the pieces were a good size, but I didn't love the fabrics. Some went straight into the 'school' box for when we make charity quilts at school. However, the ones I did like kind of went with another scrap pack I bought a couple of years ago at Coco and Co in Hastings. That scrap pack contained some lovely 70s fabrics -  flannelette, upholstery fabric and one is very synthetic. And I was keen to test the maths I used to get the centre of my Lucky Stars quilt, to make sure that wasn't a fluke.

I thought it would brighten up my sewing room. But the top has hung unquilted on the door since January and I got used to it being there. So in the weekend, I quilted it and bound it and re-attached it to the door. I like being able to look down the hall from the lounge and see it. It's nice and bright.

It was good to take something out of the half done pile.

PS Baby Lucy's shirt fits. She wouldn't take it off and wore it to bed today for her midday sleep.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

One Shirt and One Fox

After a week of mistake after mistake the first shirt is finished.

I decided to use domes rather than make buttonholes - thinking that would be tidier. But then I sewed all the domes on wrong side up so had to unpick them all. And because the buttons were attached to the domes, they all came off too.

Today it all came together and it is now in the mail to baby Lucy. If it fits, I will be finishing the other flowery one and making a third with the fabric my sister-in-law sent me during the week.

The fox is closer to being done, although I am out of essex linen so until more arrives, it is sitting in the half done pile!

I plan to add one more light x block under his nose to finish it off and then I want to add an 8" border of essex linen around the whole thing. It will end up about 48 x 48", 122 x 122cm. Not sure if that's a particularly useful size, but if you are only three and a quarter you will fit under it or perhaps hang it on your bedroom wall.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

One Armed Shirts

My sister-in-law asked me if I would make baby Lucy a couple of long sleeved winter shirts. I quite like sewing for Lucy so said, "Of course." I had Oliver and S's Music Class Shirt and Skirt pattern on the shelf just waiting.

I haven't used an Oliver and S pattern before. I am pleased the pattern is printed on slightly thicker tissue than that yukky brown tissue the likes of Simplicity and Butterick are printed on.

I read on someone's blog that when she wants to make say five shirts, she cuts out all the pieces and then does step one on the first shirt, the second shirt, etc. The blogger says it saves time. So I cut out enough for two shirts. My test shirts really. My sister-in-law is still choosing material.

They are certainly not quick shirts to make - although I reckon the short sleeve version would save hours!

My favourite part of the shirts are the pin tucks.

My least favourite part of the process is the sleeve placket. It is super-fiddly.

Anyway, I am about 75% done. I would be almost done if I hadn't cut the sleeve placket in the same place for the left and right hand sleeve. Ack. Fortunately, the required 1 meter of fabric the pattern calls for is quite generous, so I have enough for another sleeve.

Not sure how wintery looking these fabrics are. I just thought they were pretty. Both from Spotlight. One only $6 a metre.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

A Fox

I saw this great quilt a little while ago and thought I would give it a go. Helpfully Samantha linked her Mr Fox to an x-block tutorial at Pile o Fabric.

Here is where I am at so far -

I don't like his nose in the chevron - it's too harsh. I will re-do that one. This is my first time using Essex Linen. It's certainly not as loose a weave as 100% linen which is a good think when sewing on the bias.

I did think nephew Lucas might like this on. He demonstrates how to sniff the air like a fox and occasionally refers to Swiper the fox. I say, "I don't know who Swiper is." "He's on tv," I get told. And there is a fox in The Little Gingerbread Man record/book we listen to.

I think the fox will measure about 34" square before I add a natural 4" border.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Wavy Circles

My 'April' blocks started off well enough when I finally put iron to fabric and needle to fabric yesterday.

But today - aaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrggggggggggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

I have another block that is no where near flat. Given past experience, it will fit into the black dot frame, but after that I wonder whether it's ever going to sit flat enough to be quilted. It's annoying.

I am going to start cutting my freezer paper pieces inside the outlines to see if that make a difference on the next blocks.