Tuesday 31 January 2012

Uttoxeter Quilt Class

Lizzy wasted no time at all... first thing in the morning she added 4 corner stones to the borders, an added extra that she decided on right at the last minute... PMS (Pleasing My Self) she was able to make two large sandwiches ready to be quilted, two separate halves that will be joined together after quilting. She'd have made the sandwiches a lot faster if I had cut the wadding the correct width the first time! wooops...
Marisabel was having a little difficulty matching her seams so we did a little investigating. All the strips and corner stones were cut very accurately indeed so we looked at the seam allowance... just a couple of threads too narrow on the quarter inch seams... that's all it was... a little unpicking of one seam and larger seams on others and things lined up much better...

Giggly Gillian appliquéd these 5 sheep and decided she didn't want to make any more... not that she wasn't enjoying the stitching, she just wants to get the quilt finished. The green sheep-less blocks will have flowers appliqued on them... they'll look like a meadow...
Lovely Lyn, however, has a full flock of sheep! Aren't they just lovely!!!! All nine finished and with delicious, orange flowers to munch upon, some sheep walking and some standing still. The orange round the edge will be a 1/2" inner border to a rather beautiful border fabric which will be 5 inches wide.. more pictures next week as Lyn will be making a sheep sandwich, no mint sauce though! ha ha ha sorry Lyn!

We're meeting again next week, Tuesday 7th February... 10am to 3pm

Sunday 29 January 2012

Staffordshire Patchwork & Quilters

I thought I would remind you that it's nearly February, aren't I thoughtful? A new month means there will be a  Staffordshire Patchworkers and Quilters meeting, Thursday 2nd February 6:45pm start and it will be members night... that's all I know and we have been promised that it will be fun, actually... that's a done deal... put a group of quilters in one room and fun will be had!
When Ann came to Quilt Cave on Wednesday this week, she brought in some of the last few blocks that were donated to her by ladies at SPQ for making quilts for injured servicemen... she wanted our input on the layout for them, we love to help out with layout choosing and we always agree to disagree! ha ha ha...

Saturday 28 January 2012

Caverswall Quilt Cave

It's mean pickings from the camera again this time, we had a great and extremely productive day though, almost a full house again.
This 10 Minute Block quilt belongs to Brenda Barbara, I took a rather artistic photo with a slight angle hoping that you would be able to see her free motion quilting with the light skimming over it, she did such a good job of the quilting. Brenda chose to stitch straight lines in the pieced border... doesn't it look fabulous, a great combination with the churly whirly stitching in the centre!! This quilt will have Faux Piped Binding too...

Helen had a very fiddly day stitching beads on to this block for her Heirloom quilt, she must be a very patient lady, this kind of work would drive me nuts. Helen's going to have to make 3 more blocks, all with these tiny pearl beads stitched on them. Click here to see the book the three ladies are working from, Amazon allow you to look at a few pages too... I bet you say "Wow"!

Dotty Maureen, the proud new owner of a Bernina Aurora 440QE, she's been waiting over 3 years to get one!.. Would you like to know what she did at our meeting... hand stitching!!! he he he. She was Twiddling and Fiddling Jennie Rayment style on this kiddie quilt. She used fabric with a hospital theme and the quilt will be given to a children's ward when it's finished.

Arty Beryl recently donated this quilt top to Maid Marion, this and another a bit smaller. Marion is going to quilt them both and give them to charity, Marion is so generous and is always making something for charity, even sandwiches, he he he quilty ones of course. Dotty Maureen helped her with the pinning, of course.
Sheila has almost finished her commissioned quilt. She only joined us at our Quilt Cave recently and, I think you can tell, she's a long way from being a beginner! Absolutely anyone can come play, it's such a great way to spend a day, chatting, stitching, laughing and wandering round getting inspired! Sheila didn't get the date wrong either, so you don't need to be sending me emails about it, ha ha ha. See Faux Piped Binding is becoming the new normal at quilt cave too!

We meet again on Wednesday 1st and Friday 3rd February, weather permitting as there were talks of snow on the news this morning.
Please take note of the time for this blog post... I slept in! 6:30am, sure beats 1:30am!!!

Friday 27 January 2012

Caverswall Quilt Cave, part 2

Krafty Karen had her first tutorial on free motion quilting only last week, she has good movement, nice curvy curves etc...  This week she started meandering over the Hour Glass blocks on her dog's quilt... she was very quiet all day... concentrating I guess
Last Minute Chris is enjoying the relaxed pace she's working at... no rush, no deadline at all for this quilt. She hasn't decided how big it will be yet... just ambling along pleasing herself how much she gets done in a day... I wonder how long this will last... there must be a baby due sometime soon?.., a wedding maybe? I don't think we've ever seen Chris stitching without a deadline before, he he he

Foxy Margaret is using up more of her 'bits and bobs'. She's got wonderful 'bits and bobs' too. She was joining strips together all day. carefully pressing all her seams open because she wanted the project to be good and flat... yup... burnt fingers!

Ann's Jelly Roll blocks are coming along very nicely. She also ends up with some very interesting bonus Half Square Triangles that the pattern in the book suggests she use in the borders... cunningly Ann will make a second lovely quilt with them instead... PMS! (Please My Self!)

Chatty Cathy wants to learn how to do everything... yesterday... very understandable... she's very much gripped, good and tight, with the Quilting Bug. For this meeting she wanted to perfect her 1/4 inch seam allowances and improve her cutting accuracy by making  Log Cabin blocks... she was very successful too, this one turned out just perfect!

We meet again on Friday 27th January (Today actually... and yes I was up at this Stupid O'Clock) 
23 new fabrics, mostly P&B and Red Rooster, have been delivered so they will be available at Table Top & Under Shop from 10am - 3pm...
Right, eyes are most certainly weary... I'll try again... back to bed!
See you later!! I'll be the one with the biggest bags... under my eyes! ha ha ha

Thursday 26 January 2012

PAT Testing Day Coming Up!

PAT (Portable Appliance Test) an insurance requirement, even if your machine is brand new, but a blooming nuisance to get sorted out for most of us. We had a great day last April when I organized a guy to come to Caverswall Village Hall to "Do Us" all at the same time... he turned out to be rather expensive because the machine cables were tested as separate items and then VAT was added to our bill when we were not expecting it.
I've been searching for someone to come to our Quilt Cave to PAT test the machines that missed out last April... it's not easy to find someone affordable to come just for a few machines... but I have it sorted out now.
Friday 10th February 11am to 12 noon. Caverswall Village Hall
The cost is £2 per machine, that includes VAT and the cable this time.
Not just for your sewing machines though, once again, absolutely anything that you need or would like to have tested can be done on this day, feel free to bring anything, irons, extension cables, blenders, kettles, you name it.
If you take your sewing machines to any public building it is a requirement that you have them tested.
Please tell your stitching friends about this date and bring them along to have their machines "Stickered" failing to PAT will compromise insurance of any building if ever anything happened.

Wednesday 25 January 2012

Caverswall Quilt Cave, part 1

My Mum's (Gwynneth's) leaf quilt, all stitched together and looking fabulous, don't you agree? It isn't quite big enough at this stage so we had a short discussion about various options... Mum didn't want to use a pieced block border because she thinks it's busy enough, besides, she's almost run out of the Autumnal fabrics now... we did have one great idea and she's going to try it out...

Irene very happily held up her latest finished quilt top. It's all her very own design and has been a great learning experience for her. This quilt is going to be gifted to Irene's Grandson and, apparently, it's the same colour as his boat... he's an Olympic canoeist... I would guess that the boat is a canoe then?

Annie Pie has been missing us, she hasn't been able to come to our Quilt Cave for about seven weeks... she busied about all day soaking up the giggles and chatter. Annie is making several quilts of these wreath designs, she's going to be calling them "Circle Of Life"... deep and meaningful... if only I could remember the rest.. Annie help?
Helen had a little break from her heirloom quilt because she wanted to make this lovely door hanging quilt for a friend's daughter. Helen had great fun piecing lots of pink scraps together for the block centres and rummaged in Joan The Shop's bits and bobs for fabrics to join it all together, lovely isn't it.

Dotty Maureen is having a little change around at home and is unable to find her place mats... I suggested she could make some to use while the others are lost... in true Dotty Maureen fashion... quick as a flash... taaaa daaaa... finished in one day!

We meet again on Friday 27th January. 10am - 3pm as usual.
More project photos to follow soon...

Tuesday 24 January 2012

Uttoxeter Quilt Class

Lovely Lyn's sheep, all 9 of them... aren't they fabulous? The cutest of cute things for a baby quilt.. any baby, boy or girl. I wasn't sure the black thread would look right for the blanket stitch but is absolutely does. Lyn said that the eyes were a real fiddle, with them being so small but a pair of tweezers helped out. The border fabric has been chosen... wait 'til you see it!

Lizzy worked on her Churndash quilt. All the blocks are joined together to make the two halves, I don't know whether you remember me telling you that Lizzy is going to quilt this project in two halves and join them together afterwards... this method is proving to be very popular. The borders were added and next week Lizzy will make sandwiches!

Marisabel carefully squared up her Split 4-Patch blocks. It was the best plan really. Some of them had turned out different sizes because of that inaccurately cut Charm pack she had been given. As you can see the sashing strips have been cut ready. There's going to be floral fabric corner stones too...

Giggly Gillian couldn't resist it... she left her "Almost Finished" projects at home so she could start to make a flock of sheep for her very own self, inspired by Lovely Lyn's flock of course... Gillian's grandbaby will be arriving in April I think. This baby play quilt could well be finished by then.

We are meeting again next week Tuesday 31st January, 10am - 3pm as usual.

Saturday 21 January 2012

Caverswall Quilt Cave

All photos were taken as ladies started packing up time.  Just in the very 'nick of time' I remembered the camera... too late for most projects, darn...
Late Sue's Pineapple Blossom quilt top is sort of complete, isn't it wonderful! Sue is very happy with the way it turned out.....

Sue has 96 Bonus Half Square Triangles left over from the pineapple blocks and she's decided to add another border to use them up. As we saw with Barbies Pineapple Blossom quilt, it looks great with the Saw Tooth borders... the best bit about working in groups, in my opinion, is inspiring other folks with your very own projects... Sue had lots of squaring up to do...

Helen was back on the learning curve... new blocks and I think she will need 4 of these. I'm not sure whether Dotty had done this block because Helen was left to figure it out for her very own self... of course I helped a little bit... a very little bit actually, by George we got it though,

Maid Marion was watching closely to see how we solved the mystery for the new block, soaking up all the top tips as usual... she was working on this centre piece.. she didn't like it at all at first, wasn't going to do it, thought she might as well have a go at doing it, had a go, sort of liked it... going to keep it... actually, quite liked it. Spread that out all day and there you have Maid Marion's decision making process! he he he

Brenda Barbara is cracking on with her 10 Minute Block lap quilt... having her very own Quilty Quarters means she can pop in to stitch at every opportunity... when you have to clear the dining table for the family and then get stuff out again, it becomes a bit of a chore, we all have to do it that's true, but every now and again some of us are fortunate enough to have a special place which means we just shut the door and walk away, do what you have to do then return and carry right on with what you were doing... such a luxury! Brenda was free motion quilting all, all, all day!
We meet again next week, Wednesday 25th and Friday 27th January.
So many new fabrics arrived that I might have to re-name Table Top Shop and call is "Table Top & Under Shop with a bit over there and some in the van".. ha ha ha Building stock ready for the 'real' shop is proving to be very much fun... blooming hard work humping it all in and out of the Big Shiny White Van though... phew!

Friday 20 January 2012

Caverswall Quilt Cave, part 2

Joan The Shop was having great difficulty with her free motion quilting. The thread kept breaking causing her to spend more time tying off ends and re-starting than she spent actually sewing. We tried absolutely everything, admitting defeat we called Phil Morton and he told us it sounded like the timing was out... so, it got packed up ready to go to him for a twiddle/tweak and Joan got to play with My Mum's little Bernina... wonderful progress was made!
Jolly Jo came to play and forgot to bring her project... no fabric, no pattern! Rather than go home to collect it, a 1 hour round trip, she bought a few fat quarters of Christmas fabric from Table Top Shop, cut them up and started to make a Christmas wreath... this one should be finished in very good time for our next festive season... 11 months should see to that!

Last Minute Chris started a new project, she'd like this one to be ready for June, plenty of time... Its Chunky Churndash from my very favourite Quiltville, Bonnie has loads of patterns to choose from, if you like doing patchwork pop over and see for yourself. Chris is making her blocks bigger though, they should finish to be 9 inches. This is a great beginner design too.
My Mum (Gwynneth) continues to add the Log Cabin borders to her leaf blocks, she's run out of a few of the fabrics now so it's time to decide what flavour of quilty fudge we can come up with... she suggested, several times, coming over to my 'private and secret' stash cupboards!!! ooooer...
Wendy The Wizz (just for this post Wendy) finished her 36 Pineapple Blossom blocks already!! She cut 72 x 2" corner stones and sashing strips, grabbed two spare tables and set about getting the whole thing stitched together. She has a great Ricky Timms fabric, very busy indeed, that will be used in the backing... the whole thing is an explosion of colour!
Chatty Cathy made this Quilt As You Go mat for her little dog. It was a great learning experience for her and whilst I can't see many folks wanting to make quilts for their dogs, or cars for that matter (my ladies have, he he he, we practice PMS Pleasing My Self) the good thing is that you are able to say...

"That didn't work too well, but it doesn't matter... it's only for the dog" pressure all gone... if you were feeling any pressure that is. These blocks were already quilted when they were joined together with apartment quilting. This was the back but now Cathy decided it's the front, more PMS!

We meet again in 2 hours time, 10am - 3pm. friday 20th January
32 new bolts of fabric have just been delivered, all from Moda and I will try to get them ready to take with me. Yes I have my phone and camera, before you ask!!! ha ha ha

Thursday 19 January 2012

Caverswall Quilt Cave, My Birthday Surprise!

Well now... today is my very own Birthday, 48 years old and loving every minute of it!
Yesterday, at Caverswall Quilt Cave the lovely ladies surprised me completely yet again. A huuuuuge bunch of flowers, a bottle of (sure to be delicious)  bubbly, a set of 4 extremely posh wine glasses... and even posher candle in a beautiful holder.
No-one wanted to have their Photo taken really... some opted out and that's fine...
I don't put folks' photos on this blog as a general rule, we like it that way... but this is a special occasion isn't it... so we allowed it... can you guess who is who? I'm not telling!
Happy Birthday to me, in the middle holding my presents (Maid Marion holding my scrumptious flowers) and a huge, huge thank you to all of you lovely ladies, including the ones that couldn't come this time, you make me feel so special and my lovely Birthday card says everybody loves me!!! so for me, special it is... all all all day!!

Wednesday 18 January 2012

Caverswall Quilt Cave Part 1

Holy Moly... It finally happened... Caverswall Quilt Cave is getting so busy every meeting that I'll have to post about the ladies' progress a bit at a time... at least for now... I won't be able keep up otherwise, everything is so inspiring and exciting and I don't want to miss sharing anything... and today there was no ice on the Big Shiny White Van so I got my own keys from the important pot and managed to remember everything... we have pictures! OK I didn't get good pictures of every project but there's still a lot to see!
First up are the Pineapple Blossom blocks that Gail's working on, stunning aren't they!! She had finished 9 in total by the end of the day so, she's 25 to go, this will be a double bed quilt for a very lucky relation.
I have to say that we all agree Bonnie's Pineapple Blossom quilt is fantastic as a beginner project.

Arty Janet had a little break from this arty farty project over the last few weeks. She says it was a good thing to take a break from it because getting back to it now, she's full of renewed ummph and inspired ideas... joining and slashing and mixing etc... these arty folks are such fun to watch!
Helen's next block for her Heirloom Quilt needed pin tucks.. you should have heard her complaining while she burnt her finger as she pressed the tiny tucks, she did very well actually... totally polite in the language department! Number 10 Bernina foot is the proper one for edge stitching but the supplied number 5 does a great job too, ask Helen if you like, she's an expert now.
Irene also returned to one of her Phd's (Projects Half Done) she marked her quilting lines first of all then quilted them.... it looks like our favourite "Points & Bellies", they're fast and fun to do and use the patchwork seams as guides. This Kate Spain fabric sold out as soon as it came in, you can see why though, tis rather lovely!

Beryl had a day off from her Art College so she came over to play with us... I think she misses us terribly you know. She slots right into our day as if she's never been away. Of course, just because he hasn't been to Quilt Cave doesn't mean she's not been stitching, he he. This is a tiny part of her current project... how cute is he! Appliquéd with clever establishment, fancy stitches and writing... fantastic.

That's it for this session, part two will come along very soon. We meet again on Friday 20th January. 10am to 3pm as usual. Ta Ta For now...

Uttoxeter Quilt Class

Giggly Gillian created a lot of stitchy homework at The Bank House Hotel Quilt Class. Miles and miles of hand stitching actually... all the way round this queen size, turquoise and beige/brown quilt... yet to be named. Gillian's in very high spirits at the moment and feeling extremely productive... and she's determined to finish off her PhD's ( Projects Half Done) before she starts on her list of things to make next....
This Christmas Table Topper is Gillian's too... she didn't want it to be a thick table runner so she's quilted it using only a stabilizer as the wadding... she's practising PMS (Pleasing My Self) which I very much encourage at every meeting. This project also had binding machine stitched on so that's another 90" of hand stitching.

Marisabel has had a bit of a struggle matching her seams with these blocks... the problem though, was not her own inaccuracy... the pre-cut charm squares were to blame... some of them were too small so it threw out the matching, still... Marisable is learning a lot about quilt fudge (no calories!) I laid out the blocks to get an idea of the end result... fabulous isn't it? There's going to be sashing too!

Lovely Lyn spent the day working on the sheep (please look at the previous post) and she brought in one of her finished cushions, now I am really wanting to make new ones too! All of these fabrics are left overs from Lyn's Log Cabin quilt, she was able to make three cushions from all those bits... I do hope you keep your little left overs, it's surprising what you can make with them you know.

We are meeting again next week, 24th January, 10am - 3pm, the ladies are wanting a spell of meeting every week, which is a reflection on their enthusiasm... they must have had new batteries from Santa eh!

Tuesday 17 January 2012

A Top Tip From Uttoxeter

Lovely Lyn started a new project, a play mat for her baby grandson. It's to be sheep appliquéd onto fields. Lyn hadn't tried applique before... I think the easiest way is "sticky stuff and blanket stitch"... so that's what we did. This Moda fabric is just perfect as the curly fleece isn't it... The problem came when I was showing Lyn how to do the blanket stitching because we couldn't see the edge of the head on the body... can you see that?...
I pondered what to advise... glasses would have been good for me! ha ha ha... click on the picture and you'll see what Lovely Lyn decided might work... That's the Sew Line air erase-abubble pen!! What an absolutely great tip. Lyn was able to do fabulous blanket stitch following a very visible purple line that will disappear in no time.
This is a hot tip eh? Using air erase-abubble pens to help see blind edges (that does sound a bit daft doesn't it!)... look what a great job Lyn did with her first ever blanket stitch! She went home with a big piece of sticky stuff and everything she needs to complete 9 sheep... Inspired by Lyn's success, Giggly Gillian bought the Moda fabric to make a field of sheep of her very own! More on this project next week.