Sunday, May 31, 2009

Sunday Stash #5

These fabrics are designed by Prints Charming, The combined talents of Cath Derksema and Kirsten Junor have ensured that there are plenty of fresh and funky Australian designed fabrics. This particular design is called Starburst in Lilac, Chatreuse and Red.

The two fabrics with the white background are hand screen printed. They were purchased some time ago at Material Obsession in Sydney. The green fabric is part of their new Rainbow Gardens range of fabrics and is more widely available.

Both these talented Australian designers now create Prints Charming ranges for Marcus Fabrics in New York.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Retro Forties

Cathy from Cabbage Quilts posted a quilt on her blog on Wednesday that brought back some memories for me. Cathy blogged about a quilt that she made in 2004 from Sharon Yenter's range of fabrics called Retro Forties. Her quilt is fabulous, made from nine-patch blocks, and also a pieced back. It is a gorgeous quilt! (Be sure to check it out!)

I too loved this fabric range when it was printed in 2004 . The feature fabric is of ladies doing their washing and ironing. This is the quilt I made with it - it is one of my first quilts, made in 2004:

From memory I purchased this quilt as a kit, complete with pattern, and all fabric requirements. Some of the log cabin fabrics may even have already been cut to correct size.

Although nowadays I am most unlikely to make a whole quilt from just one fabric range, or even purchase a kit, I still think that making a quilt from a kit is a fabulous way to start making quilts, especially if your fabric stash is limited.

This quilt was professionally machine quilted with an all over stipple, by Karen Terrens from Quilts on Bastings.

I look at this quilt and feel so grateful for my quilting journey; everything I have learned along the way, the mistakes I have made, the confidence I have gained to try new things, and all the wonderful women I have met on this creative journey. (My formal education and professional back ground are very far removed from anything even remotely creative!)

Have you made anything with the Retro Forties fabric line? Did you purchase the same kit?

I will leave you with this fabric image, it is probably my least favorite domestic chore.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Purple Quilt

I have finished the purple and green quilt that I have been working on this week.

I spent most of yesterday quilting it. I love straight line quilting and this quilt certainly features more of that. I like to outline seam lines by stitching just a quarter of an inch either side of a seam. I outlined all horizontal and vertical seams of this quilt that way, and then also outlined the diagonal seam of the half square triangle, however, only on the solid linen blend fabric.

I did not need to mark these lines on the quilt before stitching as I use the outer or inner edge of my sewing machine foot as a guide (I adjust the needle position to stitch a quarter of an inch from the seam line).

The back of the quilt is also pieced.

The binding I used for this quilt is a fabric by Anna Maria Horner. It is from the Garden Party range of fabrics, called Polka Line in Raspberry.

The finished size of each half-square triangle is 2.75 inches. The finished quilt measures 28 inches x 36 inches.

Despite not liking to work with purple fabric this quilt has turned out to be a modern, bright and cheerful quilt! (Admittedly I love it!).

The Purple Quilt is available for sale in my Etsy Store.  You will find the listing here.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

New Fabric

I am so happy Australia Post dropped these fabrics off at my house today:

These were ordered online at Tennessee Quilts.

From top to bottom the fabrics are:
Brandon Mably - Tents - Yellow and Blue
Robert Kaufman - Mingle - Blossom, Summer
Robert Kaufman - Metro Market - Canary, Spring and Red
Kaffe Fassett - Paperweight (Pastel), Peony (Red), Paperweight (Lime) and Roman Glass (Pink).

The Kaffe Fassett fabrics are all re-orders as my stash was running dangerously low on these favorites. The others are all new additions. I usually purchase 1/2 yard cuts of fabrics that I like, sometimes I will buy 3/4 yards or 1 yard when I know a fabric would be great for binding, or if really love it.

I have also basted the purple quilt I have been working on.

I am going to quilt it today.

Hope you too have a great sewing day!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009


I have come to the realization that I don't DO purple. Purple is probably one of my least favorite colors to work with. I therefore do not have a lot of purple fabric in my stash. To challenge myself this week I have decided to make a simple baby quilt with purple and green fabrics.

I do, however, have A LOT of Kaffe Fassett fabrics that I love, but I don't seem to use them very often. So they were also targeted for use in this quilt.

The chosen fabrics:

I have combined the colored fabrics with a solid Handkerchief Linen fabric (55% cotton/ 45% linen), and have made some half square triangles. The linen colorway is birch, a light beige almost grey color.

I am going to spend today sewing the blocks together. The blocks are fairly small. Including seam allowances they measure just 3.25 inches square.

Progress is slow today, but I am pleased with the color combination.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Mini Quilt Monday

What happened to the weekend? It just flew by. In between work and sport activities, I did manage to finish a mini quilt. I decided it was time to practice sewing some curves.

And it is fully reversible! This is what the back looks like:

I used templates to cut out the blocks. I used a small rotary cutter to trace around each template, rather than marking the fabric and then cutting the fabric. The smaller the rotary cutter blade the easier it becomes to trace around a curved template.

Each finished block is a 6 inch square. The quilt measures 12.5 inches finished.

It is quilted with a squared off spiral, starting in the center of the quilt, spiraling out to the edges. I used the edge of my sewing machine foot as a guide rather than mark the lines on to the quilt before quilting.

I like the front of the quilt better than the back. The fabrics are a lot more effective in defining the circle and the curves as the color contrast is so much better. I probably should have used a solid fabric in the center of both circles.

The blocks were surprisingly easy to make, and I am hoping to make a larger quilt with this design. (One day!)

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Sunday Stash #4

These two fabrics were purchased online at Purl Soho, and are called Sketch Flowers by Suzuko Koseki for Yuwa Fabrics, in yellow and blue colorway.

I am just not ready to cut into them yet!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Hand Stitching the Binding

It is a quiet day here in anticipation of 8 teenage girls who will be coming over to help celebrate my daughter's birthday later today!

I have sewn the binding onto the Triangle Quilt made earlier this month and plan to finish slip stitching the binding by hand over the next day or so.

The binding fabric is Mingle by Monaluna for Kaufman Fabric, purchased at the Fabric Shack. The red fabric really frames the quilt.

Hope you have a great weekend! I am hoping to squeeze in some sewing time for a Mini Quilt to be blogged on Monday! What are you working on?

Thursday, May 21, 2009

A Birthday Quilt

My daughter turns 16 this week, and although this is an occasion that falls on just one day of the year, around here you would think it is in fact a Festival that goes on for more than a week!

After making these linen baby quilts a few months ago my daughter exclaimed: "Why do you never make me a nice quilt like these?" (Even though she has more quilts in her room than she could possibly ever sleep under!). So I decided to make a modern quilt for her as a birthday present.

I used a solid brown linen/cotton blend fabric and highlighted it with some colorful cotton designer fabrics by Anna Maria Horner, Amy Butler and Denyse Schmidt. I used a batting called Quilt Lite, purchased from Amitie. It is a thin batting, that is like a loosely woven flannel fabric. It is a great product if you want a thin and lightweight quilt with a nice drape.

It is quilted with straight line stitching that runs only vertically just 1.25 inches apart using dark brown Gutermann 100% cotton thread. The finished size of the quilt is 57 inches x 70 inches.

The back of the quilt is pieced using some of the same fabrics as used on the front of the quilt. The binding is made from Amy Butler's Lotus range of fabric called Full Moon Polka Dot in Camel.

I can not believe how fast the last 16 years have flown by and what a wonderful young lady she has become. I know this quilt will be well loved and will probably spent quite some time on the floor in her room, however, I much prefer that my quilts are used rather than stored in a cupboard.


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A Spot of Envy

When I read this post by Tallgrass Prairie Studio a few weeks ago and saw the fabrics Jacquie had added to her stash, I just knew they would also fit in well with my stash.

These fabrics arrived today from the US. They were ordered and sent on 13 May from the Fabric Shack, arrived at my front door (Melbourne, Australia) just 1 week later, what fantastic service!

The first fabric on the left is for the binding on this quilt. The others fabrics? Well no plans for them yet! It is not like I don't have any spotty/dotty fabrics in my stash already but I was right, they do fit in well with my stash! These fabrics are from Moda's Hello Betty range.

When ordering fabric from overseas you have to justify postage by filling the shipping envelope :)

This fabric is by Alexander Henry and is called Spotted Owl in blue. It's very cute! Where do you buy your fabrics?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Quilting Details

After a late night I have finished the quilting of the Pink and Green Squares quilt. The quilting went really well and I am very pleased with how it has added more interest and detail to the quilt. This picture was taken with the sun shining on it, and although the colors are not quite right, it does show the quilting design really well.

I first outlined all the seams by stitching just a quarter of an inch inside each seam line. Rather than marking the quilt, this can be easily done by using the edge of your sewing machine foot as a guide, and adjusting the needle position so that the stitches are the required distance from the seam line.

I decided to also cross hatch through all the white squares. This does require some minimal marking. I used a Clover Chaco marker for this and I prefer to use white. Although the white on white is barely visible it does the job. I prefer not to use colored chalk on white fabric as I find it can leave a colored mark on the white fabric as well as the stitching thread.

I used 100% cotton Aurifil Mako thread again in 40/2 weight. I has a really nice sheen to it which fits in well with the overall "prettiness" of this quilt. The stitch length I used was 4 mm.

This is what the back of the quilt looks like:

The birdcage fabric is terribly cute and is called Tweet Tweet by Michael Miller.

This quilt is ready for its binding!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Progress Report

Do you ever have days where you just were not meant to be sewing? You know, when the bobbin does not wind properly, you jam the sewing machine, you can't thread the needle, nor match the simplest of seams together? Well, Friday and Saturday were both those sort of days for me. I should have walked away, but you know when you have set your mind to something, you just persevere. The end result of those two sewing days was this quilt:

Despite my sewing issues it has turned into a pretty quilt. I don't do "pretty" very often, and although I like this quilt, I don't love it.

The quilt is made from 3 inch squares (finished size) and measures 48.5 inches square, in pink and green fabrics with a solid white alternating fabric. The solid white fabric used here is Robert Kaufman Kona Cotton Solid in White.

I have basted this quilt ready for quilting. I even managed to cut the batting too small for this quilt, and now know how to join two pieces of batting using a zig zag stitch. I abutted the two pieces of batting together, without overlapping, and zigzagged across the join.

It was surprisingly easy to do, and if you use matching color thread, this seam is invisible in the quilt. The batting I used was Matilda's Own Cotton(40%)/Wool Blend(60%).

I am hoping today is a better sewing day as I have a lot of quilting to do, otherwise, I will be spending even more time bonding with my quick unpick!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Sunday Stash #3 - Liberty Blues .......

Both the blue fabrics shown are Liberty fabrics.

The pink fabric in the center is a favorite! Not only because it gorgeous, but because it has a quaint story behind it. This is fabric from a pair of men's Boxer Shorts. I found these in the Men's Department of a large local department store, where this fabric just caught my eye.

The boxer shorts were a Mitch Dowd design and were made from 100% cotton fabric. I really could not justify purchasing them just for the fabric, but when they were still there for the end of season clearance sale I snapped them up. (The men at my house would refuse to wear pink/floral underwear!). Of course, I purchased the largest size available so as to maximize fabric quantity. I unpicked all the seams, and took out the elastic. I have since been able to use small amounts of this fabric in several of my quilts!

I am always on the look out for fabric!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Fabric Play

Thank you to everyone who has visited my blog in the last few weeks and all the lovely comments that have been left on each and every post! I was very hesitant about starting a blog, and I am totally overwhelmed by how friendly, inspirational and motivating blogland really can be.


I am ready for another project and these are the fabrics I have pulled out of my stash today:

Pink and green! Another simple quilt with some color impact, I hope!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Nine-Patch Quilt-Along

I have joined Crazy Mom's One a Day Nine-Patch Quilt-Along, and in response to Amanda's Post, here is my progress so far:

I have finished 16 blocks so I am almost up to date. The picture shows some of the blocks laid out on the white fabric that I will be using for the sashing in between the blocks.

I am using fabrics from Amy Butler's Midwest Modern and Daisy Chain collection. Although I really like these fabrics, I have had difficulty using some of these ultra bright pinks, oranges, blues and greens in my quilts. But I think the colors are working well together here!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Finished! - Gelati Log Cabin Quilt

The binding is on and hand stitched down! The Gelati Log Cabin Quilt is finished! (Another late night!). The binding fabric is Amy Butler's Full Moon Polka Dot in Cherry.

This is what the back looks like:

The finished size of this quilt is 53 inches x 53 inches.

If you need inspiration to start your own log cabin quilt check out this Scrappy Cabin Challenge group on Flickr. But be aware, there is so much variety, color and inspiration there, that before you know it, you too will be making a log cabin quilt!

Binding ~

Thank you for stopping by,

Work in Progress ~ Gelati Log Cabin Quilt
More Log Cabin Quilts

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Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Log Cabin - Quilting

My sewing machine has gone into heavy duty use and is still quilting. This time it is the Gelati Log Cabin Quilt. This quilt top was professionally basted by a long arm machine quilter as it is quite a large top with a lot of seams. This is what a basted quilt looks like when it returns from the quilter:

You can just quilt over these basting lines. Once all the quilting is finished you can remove these big basting stitches quite quickly and easily.

I really do like the look of straight line quilting stitches, so that is what I have done on this quilt. First I quilted all the diagonal lines and then I outlined the sashing in between the blocks.

I also tried out a new thread. I normally like to use Gutermann 100% cotton thread for all my piecing and quilting, but this time I used Aurifil Mako thread in 40/2 weight. It is also 100% cotton but has quite a nice sheen to it. It does make for a lovely stitch, and I was also impressed with its strength.

I am now going to try and find some fabric for the binding. I find that getting the binding right can sometimes be the hardest part!

I hope to post the finished quilt soon and that you too get to do some sewing today!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Mini Quilt Monday

I have joined the Mini Quilt Monday Flickr Group. I was sent an invitation to join and I have taken up the offer as I think it will help to extend and practice my machine quilting skills. What I also like about this group is that there are few rules, if any. You can post as often as you like, and not necessarily on a Monday either!

My weekends are usually very busy so posting a new Mini Quilt each Monday is not going to be happening here. Realistically I am going to aim for one Mini Quilt a month.

This is my first Mini Quilt:

The printed fabrics were reclaimed out of my small scrap (but too good to throw out) box.

The finished Mini Quilt measures 16.5 inches x 27.5 inches.

I have issues with straight line quilting. My straight lines must be straight and nothing less. This involves a lot of measuring and marking and stress. However, for this quilt I forced myself not to mark any of the lines before quilting. I had a lot of fun making it and I think it has turned out just fine.

You too can join the Mini Quilt Monday group. It is a fun way to extend and practice new skills and share ideas.