Sunday, April 29, 2012

Sunday Stash #139

Whereas I did a happy dance when I opened this surprise parcel of fabric, the same cannot be said for the hubby when he heard the words hand dyed fabric.  I think he feared that I might be venturing into the world of fabric dyeing:  solutions, buckets, gloves, masks, powder pigments in every color of the rainbow, and more paraphernalia (which apparently we don't need).  Alas, no fabric dyeing for me. 
This fabric is Seed Catalogue - Annie's Farm Stand by Hollie Holderman, in the White on White colorway (as featured in Sunday Stash #108), and hand dyed by r0ssie.

Brenda (Pink Castle Fabrics) and Anna (Woollykatrecently participated in a fabric dyeing workshop with Rossie and these fabrics are the end result.
The colors are vibrant and the text is still very legible.  What a clever use of fabric!  I am so grateful that I was sent some of these fabrics to work with.  Thank you Rossie and Brenda!

You can see more of Rossie work here:  Rossie's Blog

Hand dyeing this particular print was inspired by Jeni from In Color Order. 
Read Jeni's blog post here:  In Color Order:  Fabric Dyeing

Enjoy Sunday!
Rita

Friday, April 27, 2012

A Finished Quilt ~ Summersville Quilt

Another finish!
Summersville Quilt - Finished size: 33.5 inches x 38.5 inches
This little quilt has been such a joy to piece, quilt and bind!  I really have enjoyed working with these cute prints, and I do think that they are "my" colors; a color palette with which I am at ease.

I have uber-quilted this quilt with straight vertical lines just over a half inch apart, which conveniently happens to allow the outer edge of the walking foot to run along the previous stitching lines.  I love the texture created by closely stitched lines/designs; it adds to the softness of drape and hand of the quilt.


The binding fabric that I have used is Jewels in Turquoise by Lizzy House from the Hello Pilgrim collection.  Backing fabric is Robert Kaufman Kona cotton in Chartreuse.
As usual, I have updated my Etsy Store.

You can find the listing for this quilt here:  Modern and Colorful Patchwork Quilt  SOLD!
Thank you for stopping by,
Rita

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Summersville Sneak Peek

My fabric bundle of Summersville by Lucie Summers has been calling out to me and could no longer be ignored.  The call of the fabric - I am sure you've heard it before.


What started off as a mini version of my Tiffany Quilt Pattern evolved as the blocks were pieced, and changed once again on the design floor. 


I love everything about the Summersville collection; the hand drawn designs, the colors, as well as the matching solids.  The pops of solid color in this quilt top really draw in the eye to take further note of the detail of the prints. 


It's a great start to what is an otherwise cold and drab (and rainy) week.  This baby quilt top is now ready for basting and quilting.

Thank you for stopping by,
Rita

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Sunday Stash #138

Pat Bravo - Summerlove for Art Gallery Fabrics
in both Blue Crush and Sunkissed color palettes.
A selection of my favorite prints from the Summerlove fabric collection.
Summerlove is Pat Bravo's latest fabric collection for Art Gallery Fabrics.  Admittedly the large scale floral prints are not my normal fabric stash purchase but rather it was the combination of colors and patterns that immediately appealed to me.  I am looking forward to getting the rotary cutter stuck into these pretty fabrics.

Summerlove by Pat Bravo is avaible from:
It is also time to share a finished yarn project.  This time a crochet project~:  

The Pattern:  Calm Cowl by Suzana Davidovic
The Yarn:  Madelinetosh Merino DK (2 skeins) in Silver Fox

Calm Cowl is a snappy quick finish project (and an easy beginner crochet pattern).  The cowl is perfectly soft and squidgy, and just long enough for a double wrap.  I imagine it is going to feature heavily in my attire this Winter season.

For more details and photos see my Ravelry notebook.

Enjoy Sunday!
Rita

Friday, April 20, 2012

Lifesavers Quilt - A Picture Post

It's been go go go this week.  No stopping that sewing machine until it's all done.
Lifesavers Quilt ~ measures 46 inches x 46 inches.
Mind you, I don't consider playing around with fabric and sitting behind the sewing machine hard work.  It's a pleasure really and consider myself lucky with my lot.


As I sew I am usually accompanied by either music or TV/DVD.  This week saw a re-play of the UK TV series Downton Abbey.  Definitely no hardship.


For the back of the quilt (as pictured above) I have used a single Michael Miller print which nicely complements the colors and tones of the quilt top.  The quilt is quilted with a grid of straight lines:  vertical, horizontal as well as diagonal lines to intersect in the middle of each block.  Lots of quilting.
I was tempted to use my go-to black/white stripe binding fabric for this quilt, however I don't like being too predictable and so chose a red/white stripe fabric instead.  It's not too far outside of my comfort zone.  The red/white stripe fabric is from Simply Sweet by Barbara Jones of QuiltSoup for Henry Glass.

I have updated my Etsy Store.  You can check out the listing here:  Lifesavers Quilt  SOLD

Thank you for stopping by,

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Iced Watermelon Shake in Action

My Pink Castle Fabrics Blogger's Bundle has been sitting near my sewing machine for the last week or more.  It has been calling my name.  You may have already seen the red/white Chevron blocks made last week using two of the fabrics from the Blogger's Bundle, and so here is the rest.


I am really enjoying how nicely these fabrics, colors, and blocks are coming together as work is progressing.


I even love the blocks made from the black polka dot fabric on a white background; which I initially didn't think would work with this traditional block design.  It is probably my favorite block now alongside the Chevron print blocks.


 It's back to the sewing machine for now.

Have a great week,
Rita


Sunday, April 15, 2012

Sunday Stash #137

I admit to being a huge fan of dots and spots - and I have no doubt that you probably already had guessed as much -  but I couldn't resists adding this bundle of fabric to my stash.
Oh yes, a Fat Quarter bundle - and the complete set - of Michael Miller ~ Ta Dot. There are 37 different colorways and all 37 fat quarters were squeezed neatly into one shipping envelope (that's over nine yards of fabric!). 
Unfortunately it seems that one Fat Quarter played shy during the photography session, and because I know that there will always be someone who counts the fat quarters in the top image, here is fat quarter number 37 - Ta Dot in Lime (I won't tell you how many times I recounted and how long it took to work out which FQ was missing from the image : )

Ta Dot by Michael Miller is available from:
Fort Worth Fabric Studio (the entire collection in FQ and Half Yard Bundles as well as yardage)

also available from:
Fabric Worm
Fashionable Fabrics
Pink Chalk Fabrics
The Quilted Castle
Pink Castle Fabrics 

Enjoy Sunday,
Rita

Friday, April 13, 2012

Summersville!

I was the lucky recipient this week of a bundle of yet to be released fabric by Lucie Summers. 

The bundle consists of a selection of prints and solids from the Summersville fabric collection by Lu Summers for Moda.  Lu has been designing, hand screen printing and selling (Etsy Store :: Summersville) her own designs for some time now, but this is her first commercial collection for Moda Fabrics. 


Lu's designs are all hand drawn, and are inspired by the textures and shapes found in the (UK) country side where she lives and her growing collection of thrift store ceramics.  The Summersville collection comes in five distinct color palettes: Coal, Bus Red, Leaf, Orange Zest, and Seafoam.


Each color palette is complemented with a carefully matched solid fabric:  Bella Solids (Moda) in Black, Christmas Red, Kelly Green, Betty's Orange, and Horizon Blue.

Congratulations on your debut fabric collection, Lu.  I hope to (and somehow I think we will!) see much more of your work!

Rita

The Summersville fabric range is marked for arrival in stores in April, so any day now!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Humble Chevron Print

I have started the week with a new quilt project and in doing so found myself pondering what I could do with these two fabrics:


Chevron in Red by Riley Blake Designs 
Bella Solid in Scarlet


With careful fussy cutting and fabric placement it doesn't get any easier than this for a quick but impressive quilt block that changes it's appearance with each variation in fabric placement.

How versatile the Chevron print!

Rita

Monday, April 9, 2012

Postage Stamp Quilt ~ Finished!

And so finally the Postage Stamp Quilt is finished.
Postage Stamp Quilt :: 54 inches x 54 inches
Please be warned that what follows here is a picture post of the quilt:  the colors, the fabrics, the binding, etc.   Yawn ... I hope not to bore you with too much detail.

My thoughts when I started quilting this quilt?  ::  What have I started?  I must be insane!
This quilt is a catalog of the fabrics that I have used in my quilts in the last three years -  over 1200 squares of fabric and an estimate of 300+ different quilting cottons including the odd vintage scrap.  


It is an "I Spy" of quilting fabrics and also of running puppy dogs (Sherbet Pips) by Aneela Hoey (Hi Aneela!),  Matryoska Dolls and text prints in a range of colors.


For the back of the quilt I have used a print that I have been hoarding saving as backing fabric for just the right quilt.  This fabric is from the Del Hi collection by Valori Wells - Paisley in Scarlet.

For binding fabric I have used Running Stitches in Turquoise (from the Lush fabric collection) by Patty Young, which is a nice change from my standard black/white binding fabric.  I do like to mix it up a little.


This quilt was listed in my Etsy Store, but it was SOLD before I finished writing this post.  I know it is going to a wonderful home where it will be used often and much loved.


Postage Stamp Quilt :: Handy Links
Work in Progress (Part 1)
Postage Stamp Quilt (Part 2)
Postage Stamp Tutorial

Thank you for stopping by!
Rita

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Postage Stamp Quilt Tutorial

Postage Stamp Quilts are many and varied - with variation in layout and size of each square - and so is the way to approach making a Postage Stamp Quilt.  I have chosen to make my Postage Stamp Quilt from fabric scraps and by sewing 16-patch strip pieced blocks with a random layout.



I started by tipping over my scrap bin and noticed that many of my fabric scraps were small/narrow strips (trust me, you don't want to see this mess!).  And so it started:

Step 1 - Cutting Strips
Cut strips of fabric measuring 2 inches x 7 inches.


 You'll need a total of 432 strips to make a Postage Stamp Quilt measuring 54 inches x 54 inches.  However I rarely cut all fabric in advance for a project, and prefer to have short cutting sessions followed by sewing sessions.

Step 2 - Sewing Strips


Sew four strips together, pressing all seams to one side (press all seams in the same direction).  This block now measures 6.5 inches x 7 inches.  Press carefully without pulling the strip set out of shape.

Step 3 - Cross cutting the strip set

Cross-cut the strip set at 2 inch intervals.  You will have some excess fabric left over which may you may need if your strip set is a little wonky.  Make sure that you are cutting at a 90 degree angle to the sewing lines.  If not, straighten up by trimming back.

 Step 4

You'll need a total of 324 of these units :: four units for each 16 patch block.  (Again, there's no need to make all of these units first ~ it does get a little tedious).

Step 5


Sew together four units into a 16 patch block.  Each block now measures 6.5 inches x 6.5 inches. 

This is where direction of seams allowances becomes important!   
Arrows indicate the direction of the seam allowance.

The direction of the seam allowance is indicated by the arrows above; sewing and pressing ALL blocks the SAME way ensures that you will be able to easily match the seams when eventually sewing the blocks together into a quilt top.

Step 6

Press all final seam allowances in one direction.  Be consistent in pressing seam allowances for all blocks.  I am left handed and found it easier to press these final seam allowances toward the right.


The back of your block should look like this.
Make a total of 81 blocks.

Step 7 - Quilt Layout

Arrange the 81 blocks in 9 rows each of 9 blocks.  The arrows above refer to the direction of the final seam allowances of the individual blocks in Step 6.  (For example, the final seams of all blocks in the first vertical column should be pressed up).  By alternating the direction of the final seam allowance all of the other seam allowances will also "lock" together and will make matching of seams a piece o' cake.

Sew blocks together into (horizontal) rows.  Press all seams in one direction; and in opposite direction for every second row.


Sew all 9 rows together into a quilt top!  Press seam allowances (direction not important).

You're done!  Quilt top measures 54.5 inches x 54.5 inches.

Any questions?  Please feel free to ask by leaving a comment, and I will reply in the comments sections.

Happy Stitching,
Rita

RELEVANT LINKS:
Work in Progress (Part 1)
Postage Stamp Quilt (Part 2) 
Postage Stamp Quilt - Finished Quilt

More FREE TUTORIALS and patterns

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Friday, April 6, 2012

Postage Stamp Quilt Part 2

Since I last posted the progress of my Postage Stamp Quilt I've had to make just five more 16-patch blocks.  Unfortunately it took 2 more days to make just those five blocks.  I can procrastinate.


Yesterday I set my mind to finishing the quilt top and came up trumps later in the evening:


81 16-Patch Blocks
1296 patches of scrap fabric
and a scrap bin with less fabric although at a glance
you'd never know that there was anything missing.


Tomorrow :: A simple tutorial for quick and easy Postage Stamp Quilt piecing

Rita

RELEVANT LINKS:
Postage Stamp Quilt Tutorial
Finished Postage Stamp Quilt
Checkerboard Postage Stamp Quilt

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