Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Birds of a Feather ...

... flock together; and so my Flying Geese are in unison, heading in the one direction only.

I have heeded the general consensus in the comments of my prior post (showing work in progress of this quilt) and have omitted the idea of adding sashing in between some of the vertical rows.  This change in plan did mean having to add another row of flying geese to keep the quilt dimensions in proportion.  Choosing the colors for these two rows of Half Square Triangles (left hand side of quilt top - below) caused quite some indecisiveness.

I like to think my flock of Flying Geese are heading North ~ it is how I'd visualized the quilt top after the final layout was decided upon. A change in orientation of the quilt top doesn't significantly alter the  overall effect or greatly change the impact of the colors and the layout.

Backing, quilting and binding yet to come.

Flock of Flying Geese - A Finished Quilt

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Sunday Stash #96

This week's fabric stash was sourced locally from Patchwork on Central Park, GJ Discount Fabrics and Spotlight ~ did I mention I was rather restless and unsettled this week?  Restless means I have been out and about:

First up Denyse Schmidt ~ Picnics and Fairgrounds ~ has finally arrived at Spotlight.  Although range was limited I did find four of the 10 Australia Only prints:

And some basic and favorite fabric re-stashing:

From top to bottom ~
  •  Avalon - Her Cruiser - Jay-Cyn Designs for Birch Fabrics, Organic.
  • A Day in The Country  ~  Stripes in Mustard, Black and Green
  • Stripe Z ~ Red/White by Holly Holderman for Lake House Dry Goods
  • and last this has to be in my top 10 favorite prints ~ Sketch Flowers by Suzuko Koseki (Yuwa)

Thank you for stopping by and enjoy Sunday!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Progress Report

I just thought I'd show you a little something of the progress of my latest quilt project.

This week has been an all or nothing week; with much time "wasted" (you know ~ internet browsing, shopping, hair appointment, catching up with friends ~ the fun stuff)  in between bursts of frantic piecing, usually late at night.

Once all the Half Square Triangles were pieced I played with the layout for quite some time, arranging and re-arranging the unit orientation as well as the color sequence with which I am now (finally) pleased.  I am still considering adding sashing strips between some or even all of the rows.

Fabrics used:  Alexander Henry ~ Heath (Black) as well as Kaffe Fassett - Shot Cottons, except for the solid black fabric which is Robert Kaufman ~ Kona Cotton (Pepper)

Loving working with (semi) solids!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A New Quilt Project

No surprises here!

I've started on a new quilt project and as you can see it involves Half Square Triangles, shot cottons, solids, as well as a black/white cross stripe print by Alexander Henry ~ Heath (Black).  I wasn't immediately taken  by, nor could see the potential for this Alexander Henry print until I spotted this particular work in progress image on Flickr:

DQS 10 coming along!!!
DQ10 Progress by Kate from Swim, Bike, Quilt
How could I now resist?  I sourced my own stash of this print and have started a quilt with similar elements, although the overall block/design/layout will be quite different. 

It's all planned out (in my head), and there is every chance that I will change "the plan" several times as this project unfolds and as I can play with the colors and blocks on my design floor.  

As a starting point, the color palette for this quilt is coming from the above gift bag that a party-goer brought into my home on the weekend.  I often find inspiration in items found in my everyday environment, both common items and obscure items.  You just have to try and see beyond the product and it's function, and take in the colors/design/patterns. 

Only time will tell if the finished quilt resembles any of what I've shown you here today! It's back to trimming some Half Square Triangles for me.


Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Kona Cotton White ~ Stashing

You know things are serious when bolts of fabric start arriving on your doorstep - although it does raise an eyebrow from the RPQ Finance Dept!  But I am definitely in it for the long haul and I am a bit of a fan of this particular fabric:

Robert Kaufman Kona White is a fabric that has been a regular feature in my stash for almost a decade and I have used it in many of my quilts.  Now and again I have a moment of anxiety when I realize I am running low on this much used/loved fabric.

Several times each year Hancock's-Paducah offer free shipping and in return I am happy to reward such generosity (this time also combined with a % discount) with a larger than usual order.  

Sign up to Hancock's-Paducah Newletter to be notified of new fabrics and shipping deals:  NEWSLETTER

Have fabric - will stitch.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Vintage Style - a la Grand-mère ~ A Finished Quilt

I am really excited to show you the finished Vintage Style ~ a la Grand-mère Quilt! (See work-in-progress post here). It has turned out to be so beautiful!  Even though some of the fabrics that I have used for this quilt are so varied, from old  and vintage to new, graphic dots to florals, they all blend to make a great mix of colors and patterns.

The finished quilt is one of the larger quilts that I have made this year, measuring 62 inches x 80 inches, and I am pleased with how well and kind of "effortlessly" (it is still a cumbersome job) it maneuvered under the arm of my sewing machine.

For the back of the quilt I have used Robert Kaufman Kona Cotton in Ash, as well as a single strip of patchwork pieced from some of the leftover fabrics used for the quilt top. 

Quilt ~ Back

For binding I auditioned numerous fabrics including several pretty pink stripes, none of which seemed "just right" until I pulled out the much loved Kei Honeycomb Dot in Green; pieces of which I have also used in the quilt top.

Again I have kept the quilting really simple; clean straight lines, outlining just the seam lines that run from edge to edge both vertically and horizontally.  That sure sounds like less work than what it actually is.  I estimate that the quilting alone took approximately 6 hours; some things cannot be rushed.

Fabrics Used:
  • Modern quilting cottons - most are florals on a white/light background.
  • Vintage reclaimed linens in excellent condition - again florals on a white background.

Block size and piecing details:
  • Large rectangles (floral print):  Cut 5 inches x 3.5 inches
  • Small rectangles (solid white fabric):  Cut 2 inches x 3.5 inches
  • Sew a large rectangle and small rectangle together to make a unit measuring 6.5 inches x 3.5 inches
  • Make 240 units.  Sew units into 12 rows of 20, alternating the unit (ie turn every second unit up side down).  Press seams in one direction, alternating the direction with each row so that seams nest together when joining rows.
  • Join together the 12 rows to make a quilt top.  
    • Add top and bottom borders if so desired; my pieced border patches each measure 3.5 inches x 4 inches (including seam allowances).  I have alternated a solid white fabric with a printed fabric.

    I have listed this quilt in my Etsy Store:

    You can find the Etsy Listing here.

    With my apologies for a lengthy and picture filled post, but with thanks for stopping by,

    Saturday, May 21, 2011


    My daughter Steph turns eighteen today and with it comes a sense of disbelief at how fast time has passed.  It does only seem like yesterday that this "little ray of sunshine" came into the word, and truly she was. Right from day one she was a happy - always smiling - baby, and a happy-go-lucky toddler (tantrums were a rarity although a subsequent child well and truly made up for that).  Steph has grown into a confident young woman who is not afraid to speak her mind, and be her own person. 

    I have so many fond memories of Stephanie's childhood, and these are just a small sampling:
    • Steph could run before she could walk and subsequently had many a major fall which made my heart skip a beat, although she'd always get straight back up and carry on. 
    • Right up to the age of 3 she invariably had an object of some sort in her mouth, from crayons, tan bark at the park, sand, stones, sticks, marbles and Barbie shoes ~ a constant concern.
    • Steph loved dressing up and spent many months wearing a combination of her Fairy Dress and a Snow White Dress until they fell apart. Other than that, she had little interest in clothes although pink became a recurrent theme.
    • She rarely played with dolls, and preferred time in the sand pit, drawing, scissors, rolls and rolls of sticky tape, and water play.  She LOVED water and was so drawn to it that we removed an inground pool from our backyard for her safety. 
    • She was curious and unpredictable ~ you just never knew what she was going to do next, including freezing her tongue to the refrigerator element, and burning her chin on a light globe whilst playing "shadow puppets"!
    • Steph endured 1 term of Tap, Jazz and Ballet classes after which she took up Karate and eventually became a Black Belt in Karate and the #1 ranked 13&Under ~ Australian Champion in 2002.
    • Steph is a great traveler and adapts quickly and effortlessly to living out of a suitcase.  She loves history and probably enjoyed and appreciated that aspect of our travels more so than the rest of us.
    • Steph has been a trouble free teenager who loves all things computer and internet.  She sure comes in handy when coding HTML and connecting the printer which has once again un-installed itself.

      I hope you have a wonderful day today with your friends and family Steph, and I look forward to what the next 18 years may bring.  May this last year at school be a memorable one; enjoy your friends, work hard, and I know your dreams will come true.  You're destined for a bright future!

      Happy Birthday!
      Much love,

      Thursday, May 19, 2011

      Gone Quilting

      Making progress:

      After quite some procrastinating the quilt that I started working on earlier this week has been pin basted and quilting has commenced. 

      For the mathematically inclined, a quick calculation indicates approximately 125 yards of quilting will be undertaken; right now it seems much more than that.  Slowly and steady ...

      ... and plenty of quilt wrangling still to go.


      Wednesday, May 18, 2011

      Vintage Style ~ a la Grand-mère

      It is a busy week here at RPQ with major behind the scenes family celebrations happening all week; let's just say a "big" birthday is fast approaching for my daughter and a much talked about party is imminent.  I have however managed to squeeze in some time behind the sewing machine:

      I don't often do soft and pretty, and I wasn't overly confident about how this design and quilt top was going to turn out until I started sewing the units together. Once I saw just how charming the quilt top was I went back to the sewing machine and added some more rows to the quilt; a decision which I might regret once I start basting and quilting!  The quilt top measures 62 inches x 80 inches.

      The fabrics include many from my stash, most of which are beautiful Yuwa prints bought locally as well as numerous vintage recycled linens (previously blogged:  Sunday Stash #95) from Whimsie Dots @ Etsy.  As usual I have used Robert Kaufman Kona Cotton ~ White ~ as a contrast fabric.

      The response from my family when this quilt was on the design floor?  Um ... very grandmotherly with an emphasis on the VERY.  They're rather blase about the whole fabric and quilting drama that plays out in front of them, and I've learned to take their critique in a light hearted manner.

      Loving the vintage floral style and basting a quilt today,

      Saturday, May 14, 2011

      Pave the Way Quilt

      Cool or Warm?

      Well, I went with the cool color palette:

      This modern quilt is called Pave the Way and it is designed by Karen Gray from Karen Gray Design.  Karen's quilt store and the quilt pattern are featured in the Spring/Summer 2011 edition of the Quilt Sampler Magazine.

      Karen's mission is to promote the love of sewing regardless of skill and encourage her customer's to explore their creative potential.

      It has been a while since I have made a quilt from a pattern/kit but, like riding a bike, I immediately fell back into that familiar rhythm of simply making the quilt exactly as pictured including placement of fabric.  It wasn't  long ago that purchasing quilt kits was my preferred way of making a quilt ~ it  eliminated the risk of choosing the "wrong" fabrics and often was a cheaper option.  It felt "safe" and always enjoyed watching my project unfold.  I think it's a great way to get started for a newbie quilter, particularly if choosing fabrics is an obstacle.

      Pave the Way showcases Anna Maria Horner's gorgeous Innocent Crush collection, and although I have made the quilt as is featured in the magazine, the warm palette is just as lovely.  

      Karen has very kindly sent me the complete kit of both color palettes, one for me to play with and another for one lucky reader to enjoy. I've used the cool palette for my quilt which leaves the warm palette as a giveaway!  I told you, May 2011 is the month of The Giveaway at RPQ!


      Up for grabs is one complete Pave the Way Quilt Kit in the Warm Color Palette (kit includes backing and binding fabric) and a copy of the Quilt Sampler Magazine.

      I also have three more copies of the Quilt Sampler Magazine to be given away. 

      To be in the draw all you have to do is leave a comment on this post (please ensure that an email address is available on your profile - NO EMAIL ADDRESS = NO VALID ENTRY ).  International visitors are welcome to enter!   Only one comment per person/email address will be eligible to enter the draw.
      The draw will take place at 2 pm (EDT) on Monday 16 May 2011, at which time comments to this post will be closed. The winners will be announced here on my blog shortly thereafter, and will also be contacted by email.

      Handy Karen Gray Designs links:
      • Blog:  Karen Gray Designs
      • Online-Store (Etsy)FabricPalooza  ~ The Pave the Way Quilt Kit is available for purchase (with or without backing fabric) from FabricPalooza in both color palettes).  

      Good luck!


      Wednesday, May 11, 2011

      Cool or Warm?

      Melbourne:  Forecast for the rest of Wednesday
      Max 13 (55F)
      Showers. Local hail and thunder.
      It's definitely on the cool side here today and we are so not used to this kind of weather ~  grey skies, rain, hail  and a cool southerly wind.  The Winter woolies have made an appearance. Inside it is warm and cozy in a very pleasant way; the only noise is the sound of the rain and of course the whir of the sewing machine.

      This large large pile of fabric is my play thing today.  It's enough fabric for two whole quilts; backing and binding included.  Just mine  ....  for now, that is (it seems May is the month of The Giveaway!).  The biggest crafting decision today is whether I should go with the cool palette:

      OR the warm palette:

      Oh what to do?  Decisions, decisions. 

      Stay tuned for more.

      Pooches and Pickups Giveaway Winner!

      On behalf of Laurie Wisbrun  and myself a big thank you to everyone who entered the giveaway and for your enthusiastic response once again! Laurie, it seems there are loads of quilters looking for the perfect children's prints ~ in particular little boy's prints ~ and they are definitely keen to get their hands on Pooches and Pickups!

      There can only be one winner and as chosen by Random Number Generator it was ....

      ... lucky number 230:
      jenny said...
      Super cute fabric! I'll have to keep an eye out for it!                         MAY 10, 2011 3:41AM
      Congratulations Jenny!  Jenny has been notified by email.

      Thank you again to Laurie and to everyone entered the giveaway!


      The Pooches and Pickups Quilt has now been listed in my Etsy Store:

      You can find the Etsy Store listing here:  Pooches and Pickups Quilt. SOLD

      Thank you for stopping by,