Sunday 28 February 2010

Uttoxeter Class

You can see Liz likes to work in a very tidy manner. She has decided to make each block individually, start to finish... no chain piecing, but today I showed her the benefit of using a 'pig' (meninas, ainda usas o porcinho!) which seems to have made all the difference to the accuracy for her.
Ian, on the other hand, is chain piecing all of his blocks. As you can see he also likes to be methodic, everything laid out 'just so'... the decision to plan fabric placement worked well and all the blocks are now the same, more or less....
Ian completed 6 blocks today and the remaining 18 are more than half done... all only needing three more strips each...
Liz completed 7 blocks, the centres are done for the remaining 17 too.
It really isn't a race, but they are watching each other's progress all the time...

Ian and Liz have an allotment and today I was treated to 6 small swede and a kilo or so of yummy sprouts! I think it was their version of 'an apple for the teacher'... it worked, I was very helpful to them all day!
We are meeting again on Sunday 14th March, which is Mothers Day... when they will be proud parents of a new Aurora baby!! awwwwwww....

Saturday 27 February 2010

Forsbrook Quilt Group

It was a very exciting day for Brenda, not only did she learn to fudge using corner stones but she made her quilt sandwich and started on the quilting using her new walking foot. The batting is polyester and very 'poofy' so it is a little more difficult to sew, but she is getting on very well and may even do a bit more at home.
Joan The Shop did bring a bit of her shop this week, he he he.... She put her original Rail Fence table runner to one side as she has been busy at home making this practice quilt. She wanted to perfect her cutting skills you see, and rather than cutting for the sake of cutting she decided to piece this small quilt. Joan is wondering how on earth we quilt large quilts on these small domestic machines... he he he, I told her not to worry about that... we just do and I will help her to figure it out in time....
....but she cannot take too much time to do the figuring out.... these two blocks are the start of a double bed sized quilt!! Joan The Shop joined my group three weeks ago and already has 4 quilts on the go! She says the men in her life haven't eaten for weeks!!! ha ha ha

Thursday 25 February 2010

Alton Quilters

On Monday afternoon I went to meet up with the Alton quilters. We haven't had a meeting for ages, first the Christmas holiday season kicked in followed by the New Year (as usual! he he he) then there was the snow , then there was snow, then the snow, he he he. There was snow on Monday too, but not enough to stop us gathering this time!
I am a 'new girl', this group goes way back and has been meeting in each others houses for ages... After the quilt show we decided to ask whether it would be possible to use the room in the church for our gatherings... the idea was to be able to get more sewing done and maybe to have more ladies join us. So here we sit making plans.... waiting for the kettle to boil too!
Maxine brought in a scrap quilt that she has recently machine quilted... tis fab! That's it on the table....
Maxine also confessed to owning a lot of UFO's and has decided to go on a mission to finish them, all of them!
This is one of them, great colours!... the top is finished so it only needs to be sandwiched and quilted, I bet it will be done for our next meeting, which will be Monday 8th March, so Maxine has two weeks to do it.....
Ok Maxine.... this is an official challange!! he he he

Wednesday 24 February 2010

Auroras In Uttoxeter

These photo's are the best I have... the only ones I have actually. Such a peaceful and productive day! I had time to take more pictures... I just didn't....
This is Gillian..... Every meeting she threatens to bring her own sewing machine and every week she accidentally forgets... because she loves to use one of my Auroras... of course I understand fully!!
This is Jenni, with her very own Aurora, she says it does everything except make the tea and tell her when the bobbin is running out! She is very happy with her purchase though, such a wonderful, yet drastic, change from her hand crank Singer!
This is Lizzy.... she has her own machine and usually brings it to class... but she had struggled a little with the quilting at home.... so today she wanted to try quilting on an Aurora....
Try one?
She did,
She did.....
and love it.... SHE DID!

Messy Maureen joined us too, she is almost done with the quilting on her log cabin project, it's looking good.

We meet again next Tuesday 2nd March, 10am to 3pm.

Tuesday 23 February 2010

Birte's Bargello

When our Birte finished her first Bargello wall hanging a few years ago, she declared that she wouldn't ever make another....BUT... last year, inspired by a quilt that Ursula had made, Birte made her second one, a large Bargello wall hanging (pictured below).... So, this is of her third Bargello, it's much bigger!... I haven't seen this particular design before.... the colours are very much Birte's, she just loves purpley-pinky fabrics... she says it was made in 4 pieces and it was very easy!.... it doesn't look easy, but I believe Birte, if you can follow numbers, you can make a Bargello quilt!

Monday 22 February 2010

Just Because...

I saw this angel in a little craft shop on Saturday, it made me smile so I decided to show you too.... you see, I am posting for the sake of posting.... because I like blog posting! he he he
I have neither pictures nor report from the Sunday class... I cancelled it when I saw the snow, only 5" but enough to stop me venturing out and driving. Ian and Liz were very disappointed but we can catch up next Sunday. An extra week leaves them no excuse for not having all their homework done, and gives Ian more colouring time for his plan.....
I did make a bag for carrying a cutting mat and 24" ruler... tis very primitive, maybe I will show you, maybe not... tis only a prototype... and it shows! ha ha ha
The next class at The Bank House is this coming Tuesday, 23rd February.

Saturday 20 February 2010

Forsbrook Quilt Group

Joan The Shop didn't bring her fabric stash today, so her new name might not stick, he he he. She finished the top of her quilt and we had great confusion about the batting.... just because I call it 'batting' and in the UK it is better known as 'wadding', which I can't get used to... but 'batting'' sounds like 'backing'... which led to the start of the confusion... we discussed 'borders' and 'binding'... more confusion... he he he, we will get there... in the end.
Brenda decided to add another strip to her quilt so that it could be a baby quilt instead of a table runner. She made the 'classic' mistake of cutting the blocks to 6" instead of 5" by using the width of the ruler, she was concentrating so hard on getting everything level and the seams lined up you see... I assured her we ALL make that mistake..... not to worry, at least 6" can be trimmed to 5" so all was not lost, we were only the 0ne block short so it was time to learn another method of fudging, can't do without fudging can we?
Jenni has the top centre complete, she spent the day making the 72 Half Square Triangles (HST) and cutting all the background for the Saw Tooth borders.

We decided to have lunch delivered to us, for the first week we all went down to the restaurant, ate in luxury... now, only on week 3, we are back to 'eat quick and back to the machines'... he he he, quilting is such a fun, compulsive, addiction.. he he he

We meet agian again at Heath House Farm in Forsbrook next Friday, 26th February... the end of February already!!!!

Thursday 18 February 2010

A 2 Day Project

Moda fabrics... I love the things they make with their fabrics. The free patterns are easy to follow... well, mostly they are....
then again, I am not brilliant at following instructions, so it could be me at fault.... he he he, (those who know me will not be shocked about this statement!)
So... this is what I made, it's called the Mill House Lane Tote Bag... it was very easy and used up 28 x 1 1/2" strips of lovely bright colours....and 2 days of my time!!! TWO days, my goodness!
Molly decided she had better just amuse herself burying goodies under her bed cushion... I think it is so cute the way she does that with her back legs.... she talks all the while she is burying stuff, he he he, I have no clue what she is saying but I can guess!

*for those who asked.... Molly is a rescue dog from the streets of Mexico City, some cute Spaniel looking dog crossed with an anti-social sort of terrier one, she barks a lot!*

Wednesday 17 February 2010

Frankie's Monkeys

Frankie wrote to say that I had inspired her with my Wonky Blocks quilt.. I thought she was very sweet to make such a lovely comment... but WOW look what she made!!! She took the idea a whole step further, I love how she chopped the little corners off each block, very effective, don't you think.. and that lovely bright red, thin border is so perfect... sorry, I'm gushing aren't I?... It's not every day I inspire people... I feel rather special!
Each Funky Monkey centre block has been fussy cut... they look like they all have their own little window.....
Do you think these little monkeys have had their lips done? I do! he he he
There's been a lot of snow where Frankie lives so she had no choice but to stay home stitching.... what a terrible predicament eh.... NOT! each block is 10" square....
This quilt is for Frankie's newest grand baby, what a very lucky guy eh! He isn't quite with us yet but by the time he joins us in this big, wide, quilty world, this quilt will be finished and waiting for him.

Monday 15 February 2010

Utoxeter Quilt Class

Ian and Liz had cut all of their 4" squares at home in preparation for their marathon of making Half Square Triangles (HST's) 72 for the border blocks and 24 for the main centre blocks... each.
These are some of Ian's, he chose to use autumnal (now that is a funny word, eh) colours, the contrast is fabulous, the HST's with the orange swirl fabric are for the centre blocks. He couldn't do any more of his project because he wants to have much more control over the fabric placements. See..... I am a "throw it in and love it" kind of quilter and Ian is most definitely NOT... he wants, and will have, total control!! It will be much more stressful but, hey... it is his project... he should do it exactly how he wants to,right?.... so he will be drawing it all onto squared paper and getting out his colouring pencils and planning! next week we should see the results.
This is what we got Ian to do next.... there's no point in him sitting doing nothing is there... Liz was chuffed to have her very own stitching staff! This also will serve as evidence that she did have help, if/when she finishes first... I know it's not a race.... not sure they see it that way though!
These are Liz's colours, various shades of green, how funny that out of the 7 people making this project right now, 3 have chosen to use greens... they are very calming shades of green too, quilting therapy? Anyway, Liz would have a lot more blocks done if she had not asked Ian to give his thoughts... he planted a seed in Liz's head that the blocks would look 'better' with the greens in a different order... the seed grew into the idea and all was unstitched and re-sewn in a different order.... I wonder whether I could liberate these two a little? What do you think?

We meet again, at the Bank House Hotel next Sunday, 21st February.... when, hopefully, production will resume!! he he he. Don't worry, Ian and Liz are really enjoying themselves.

Saturday 13 February 2010

The Turquoise Thing

I'm pleased to show you how very cunning I've been with this project... remember I wanted it bigger.... wider and not a lot longer?... tadaaaa, this is what I've done. It doesn't mean I am a genius or anything but I quite like it actually... very balanced, in a slightly wonky way... perfect!
The backing is ready, I do like mine to co-ordinate with the front, if I can of course, and I much prefer to piece a few fabrics together, adding a little more interest... using up a little of my fabulous stash, these are from my never ending Brazilian fabrics.
So, I am ready to make the sandwich. These are the threads I will use. On the right is Aurifil, fantastic thread, a dream to quilt with, it will be on top. On the left, Cotty thread... I can only use this in the bobbin because, no matter how hard I try, it will NOT sew nicely on my Aurora... not just this one spool, almost every one I have can only be used in my bobbin... weird eh!

and one of us is getting fed up of waiting... EVERY flippin' time I stand up from the machine she jumps up too, wagging the question, "now is it, are we going now?" ... so I am going now, I can't stand it any longer.... ha ha ha

Friday 12 February 2010

Forsbrook Quilt Group

Dotty Maureen, ironing her pineapple blossom pieced border ' bunting', it really looked like carnival bunting too!
Brenda (not Barbara!) on the left, cut her strip sets into blocks and got them all sewn into the quilt top.
On the right there, is our new lady, we shall call her 'Joan The Shop' he he he... I have never had anyone turn up to a first class with so much fabric, she has a beautiful stash, all pieces bought "just because".... I would never do that, would I? Would you? Of course we do it, all the time!!....
Joan brought in this quilt top to show us, all of the hexagons are hand pieced, I think she said they were done a long time ago, and she remembers some of the fabrics being from curtains and dresses from years gone by.... She has a new sewing machine and a new quilting book now so she's going to finish it the fast way.... Isn't it lovely...
After a great deal of digging and deciding through her stash, Joan made up the strip sets and got them cut into blocks ready for piecing, which she will probably do for homework.

The next meeting at Heath House Farm in Forsbrook is next Friday, the 19th February... we don't have many places left for next week though, yippppeeeeeeeee!!

Tuesday 9 February 2010

A brilliant day today. 5 ladies, and yours truly (of course I am a lady too!) making 6 of us. We have been meeting for a while now and it shows, if you could hear some of the conversations, you would know what I mean... a laugh a minute!
Gilllian has to work on the other side of the room as she is easily distracted, she says, I think she just loves to have two tables to herself! She is working on her Saw Tooth borders, 72 HSTs.. almost done now....
Lizzie has done a lot of stitching at home so she was able to make her sandwich today. I very cheekily asked the hotel to let us use another room for that... they have funny shaped tables in there so we had to improvise a bit
But that was fine, as you can see here Lizzie is now ready to quilt.
Dotty Maureen spied the opportunity, so we made her sandwich too. We all had back ache by the time we had finished the two though. fortunately t'was tea break time....
Messy Maureen, who was very tidy today...) did lots of quilting today. She had to switch between blue and white threads, to keep the crisp theme going. She used polyester batting so it is good and poofy, with it draped on her knees to tie the ends off, she had big rosy cheeks too!
Maureen bought her Pineapple Blossom quilt top to inspire us all... guess what the ladies want to make next?
I am a bit surprised at how fast we are moving along with this group... they love it.

Next meeting in Uttoxeter is on Sunday 14th, 10am to 3pm.

Angie's Mini-Shop

For my Quilt Cave in Portugal, I always had a mini-shop... a small table in the corner where I would sell supplies, like thread, needles, rulers, bobbins & blades. It is most irritating to find that you can't continue with your project because you ran out of something... or even more annoying, when you forget an important something.
My Mini-Shop never made huge profit, that wasn't the idea, it was all about convenience.
I've decided to start a new "Angie's Mini-Shop" here too. Whilst at the Fabric Guild I purchased a few things to start me off. There were two boxes of pins, I sold one already, I made a penny profit! he he he

The threads though, were stolen, I found the guilty party, so don't worry... They look lovely in my drawer! he he he
Now for each quilty meeting I have another bag to carry... maybe I'll purchase a small donkey?

Monday 8 February 2010

The Fabric Guild

We, Dotty Maureen and myself, printed off the directions from t'internet and set off... we did really well and got very close to our destination.... until the directions said go straight over next 5 roundabouts (circles).. of course we were chatting away and lost count... he he he, typical women, I know!! but, GPS free we eventually found it!
and Oh my... there was a sale on!! The place was packed with people hunting, laughing and generally enjoying themselves. These photos were taken as we left the warehouse, earlier there were lots more happy shoppers. There is a refreshment corner with tea, coffee and hot chocolate, an assortment of yummy biscuits and lovely ladies to chat too, I think that might be my favourite bit because I LOVE TALKING!!! he he he, have you noticed?
So, to confess....
I know I said I would NOT buy fabrics, but, but, but.... I did buy 4 pieces. They are not for adding to my stash , they are for specific projects that I want to try, so I think they are justified purchases... you agree, right? These batiks were not in the sale though, bummer.
But these stripes were, £3 per yard... there were lots of stripes and checks that I would have loved to have brought home with me... so I was very, very good in only buying these two blue ones. I would have been happy with only a half metre of each but sale fabrics had a minimum 1 yard purchase, what a shame! he he he

Saturday 6 February 2010

Forsbrook Quilting Group

... see, I promised you I wouldn't be alone this week! Jenni and Dotty Maureen came to play. And a new student, Brenda (who I keep mixing up with Barbara? Who's Barbara?... I have no clue, begins with a B... that's all I need for confusion) he he he. We had a fantastic day and got a lot done.
Dotty Maureen managed to finish her quilt top, she is pondering whether to add another black strip border and what to do for a complementary backing. Unfortunately, Dotty Maureen will need to go shopping for that, so we are off to The Fabric Guild tomorrow, a little light shopping therapy should be just the ticket.. I won't buy fabric though...
I won't buy fabric...,
I won't buy fabric...,
I won't buy fabric...,
I won't buy fabric...,
I won't buy fabric...,.... is it working????
I won't buy fabric..... he he he OK, I will try not to buy fabric.