Friday, October 22, 2010

A finish

You might remember this scrap quilt I had made a couple of months ago for my 11 year old granddaughter.
I'm showing it again because........................ 
I finished it just yesterday.
I knew you'd want to know how I machine quilted it but really with a scrappy quilt, it's more about texture since whatever you do doesn't show up that well. Great for when you're still in the learning stages of trying to manage a larger quilt on the machine and very forgiving of any little quirky bits that might end up happening.
I saw  Patsy Thompson had posted about her pattern for exploding feathers on her blog so had a go and then ordered the second feather DVD that it's featured on. I can now quilt the feather shape in any direction, my stitches are becoming more even and I can even backtrack pretty well now.
I got this backing fabric online for $3.50 a yard, I love a bargain and perfect since apparently yellow is now the favourite colour and pink is so last year.
 I washed it in the washing machine, hung it out on the line for about 15 minutes just to start off the drying and then lay it flat on the lounge room carpet with the overhead fan to finish drying it and get it as flat as it could be. It's quilted with Hobbs Heirloom wool batting and #60 Mettler 2 ply cotton.
 It's about 80" square.

Got that done in time before this storm with thunder, lightening, rain and hail hit. It was all a bit rushed but I really raced to get this finished so I can deliver this one in person.

I'm taking off to New Zealand in the morning to catch up with all the family, Mr Quiltsalott is joining me in a week and so the blog could get pretty quiet for the next few weeks. Forgive me if it takes me a couple of days or more to catch up with comments and your blogs. I'm off to bed, I have to drag myself up at 3a.m.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I'm busy quilting

Sometimes you just have to step away from the computer so sewing can happen. This is what I've had my head down doing. I'm half way through  quilting the scrap quilt which is 81 inches square. I wanted to show you this picture so you can see that I still have a ton of room under the arm so it would accomodate a king sized quilt no problem.
I forgot to put the Supreme Slider on at one point and wondered why it was harder to push the quilt along so it gets the big thumbs up from me. I have a Hobbs Heirloom batting in this one which is so light and beautiful to use.
 I was good and finished the quilted pillow first otherwise it might not have got done.
I went to a small quilt show last weekend and captured a few shots of bits and pieces. Amongst these are  some machine quilted motifs for ideas.
 Can you believe I didn't buy any fabric? It's true but I couldn't resist this sewing box.
On the way home, we stopped off at the OfficeWorks store. I was looking to replace my office chair which is on the way out with the hydraulics. I couldn't find a replacement I liked but did get some gadgets. This lumber support fits over the back of the chair and will also help keep my back cool in summer when it gets hot.

I have hips that need chiropractic intervention every few weeks, along with other body parts. When I have longer periods on the machine, I can really do myself some damage. It's such a pain having short legs. I rest my left foot on this footstool while the right foot is operating and it evens up the hips. I've had no pain since using it.

Monday, October 4, 2010

On the machine

I'm quite enjoying this machine quilting lark but I still have to schedule time for it otherwise it's just not going to happen. Ok, free motion Fridays are hard to keep up with but a regular play is still needed to keep practicing. After seeing this post by Jenny Bowker, I decided to run with the idea, killing two birds with one stone, I could make a good sampler piece that I could turn into a cushion. Jenny is teaching a class at Houston for her idea and demonstrated this in Australia at the quilt shows for Bernina. With her permission I am able to share this.
I had loads of fun playing around with different motifs as well as some background fillers.
The texture looks so good in the photos, I just need to wash it and turn it into a really useful item.
The next thing I want to get a grip of is to pay attention to the regularity of the gaps between the stitched lines. I still have to force myself to stop at certain points so I don't lose control of what I'm doing . I also have issues with deciding where to go next and how to get in and out of spots, for me this is the hardest of all.
I've been reading these two books authored by Diane Gaudynski and learning a lot. I didn't pay a lot of attention to my varied stitch lengths when I started practicing and as I've done more, it has improved enormously. It wasn't easy to learn to drive a car and this is similar, I find myself listening to the sound of the motor and adjusting the speed of my hands and the foot on the pedal. Co-ordinating them all takes time.
Just for fun, I thought I'd share my Grandaughter's fifth birthday cake story. All the kids get to choose their birthday cake and Sophie asked for a list of must haves.
1. A princess.
2. Some sheep.
3. A dog.
Then it got even more specific, the princess had to have a hat and be standing behind the sheep. The dog had to be chasing the sheep. The dog had to be black. This is while the decorating was in full swing. My daughter is a Mum that rocks! By the way, the sheep are made of cupcakes. Jeez, I only ever asked for a banana cake.