Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Blocks for Orlando

When I saw the news reports of the mass shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando on 12th June I felt sad, angry and powerless. On Monday morning, as breaking news was still coming out I dropped my son off at school and went running. I plugged in my loud music and ran further than I have in a while. I have legs, I have a life, I can run. 49 innocent people will never run again, maybe more. When I got home I watched the news footage and started pulling fabric out. Before long I had made this mini quilt.
 That cotton and steel fabric came in really handy with Florida on it. The same thought occurred to me, I can create, I can make something beautiful, so I should. So many creative souls were lost on Monday, let us make the art they won't make now. This flag is a reminder for me to stand against hate and stand with my lgbtq loved ones in solidarity. 

But what more could I do? Thankfully the Orlando modern quilt guild has done what quilters do in tough times - planned a quilt of comfort, dozens and dozens of them. So I'm making blocks to go to Florida like this: 

And since I'm only one person I have invited other uk quilters to join me -  I'll be the post lady and get it all to Orlando. 

These quilts won't bring the victims back, but if they show love and bring some comfort that is the best we can hope for.

Thursday, 14 April 2016

It Will Be Fine

A dear friend had something really rubbish happen to her. The kind of Pull the rug out from under her feet, life changing rubbish that no one deserves, least of all my kind lovely friend. So of course I wanted to make her a quilt. But, within a few days of the rubbish event, she had already made plans to travel, quit her job, go off by herself and have an adventure. Brave woman. 

So, not a quilt, a cushion cover that could pack down small, and be filled with jumpers if need be! 

So I pulled out some scraps, including hedgehogs- she had a pet one! - and some Cotton And Steel Lucky Strikes to wish her well, and started...

An hour later I had this 

And an hour and three quarters after that I had this 
Fully lined, quilted, with a button back.

I was pleased with my speedy work. She loved it. She has a positive, determined attitude. Life has given her a massive pile of lemons, but she will make lemonade, she will eventually be just fine.

Linking up to Le Challenge

Friday, 8 April 2016

Swapping fun

I have had a lot of fun doing an Instagram mini quilt swap. It was a Dashwood Studios fabric theme. I made this for the lovely @imstudiolou.
Actually this is just the layout, I forgot to snap the finished item- doh!  And had a lot of fun making and collecting extras. 
 And then I received this beauty from @budsmam.

With gorgeous extras and back detail.

But best of all has been the getting to know my swap mates- it's a funny thing social media, it really is sociable sometimes!! So I'm going to link up to needle and thread Thursday to show not what I made, but what my new pal made!

Sunday, 20 March 2016

Sunday Stash March

I was very pleased to find these lovelies in the post ( I had bought them, it wasn't magic!) But nevertheless, pictures on a website is not the same as lovely fabric in your hand! 

It was a bunch of Cotton and Steel 2015 prints at bargainous prices from a place called the Fabric Guild. The thing about fabric is that it does change like fashion, but last season's prints are still really cool- and you have to snap them up when you can! 

I love my stash...!!

Saturday, 5 March 2016

Instagram Whirl of Gaity

I love Instagram. Love it! The instantness of it all, millions of photos of lovely quilts and fabric and sewing machines and cats of top of all of the above - and you can show your appreciation with a tap of a screen. But the thing I love is getting to know new people! I have a few friends and family following me, but mostly total strangers, loads of them! 
Look! 100 people follow me. Wow! And I don't know most of them. They live in other countries!!! I love following them right back- it's so fascinating to see what someone is making in Japan, or Seattle or Edinburgh. Do some of those I exchange cheerful and encouraging comments with count as friends yet? I don't know, kind of I reckon.

But I do still have this lil ole blog here, so now I'm going to just stick up a ton of pics because I've been busy!

Next quilt is going to be a bigger one. In fact I have the blocks ready and waiting, so what am I waiting for? Time to put em together. 

That's it for now. Maybe I won't leave it so long next time! But until then, you'll find me trawling the sewing hashtags over on Instagram #

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Wonder Cushion Tutorial

I never know what to do with my wonder clips, they rattle around in the bottom of my sewing bag, and so I got to thinking "If only there was a pincushion for wonder clips..." and so I made this, in about 20 minutes flat. A sewing frenzy, if you will.

 I haven't found anything like it out there on t'internet, so I thought I'd make a tutorial!

You will need:
5 2x4" scraps for the tags
4 1x5" pieces for the in between strips
2 2x5" pieces for the start and finish strips

1 5 x5" square for the back

heavy filling - rice, couscous etc.

1. Fold the 5 tag scraps in half lengthwise, right side together. Sew across the short ends.

2. Turn the tags right side out and press.
3. Take the start piece and lay a tag, centred, along the bottom edge, lay an inbetween strip over that, matching up the ends, pin and sew along the bottom edge, 1/4 inch seam of course!

4, Finger press the inbetween strip down, so you can see that the first tag has been neatly stitched inbetween the first and second strip.

5. Now lay the second tag, just as you did the first, and cover with the next inbetween strip. Sew along the bottom edge.

6, Repeat this until all 5 tags have been stitched in place, and the last piece is the last 2x5 strip. When you flip it over, it should look something like this underneath. I didn't press it with an iron, mostly because I didn't have it near, but I think finger pressing keeps some 'spring' in the fabric, which is good because you want the tags to stand up when the cushion is complete.
7. Place the top and bottom pieces, right sides together and sew around 3 and a half sides, leaving a largish space for turning. Turn inside out. Fill with something heavy, not too full, whipstitch the opening closed and you're done!

I can't wait to use my Wonder Cushion for my next binding session. If you make one of your own let me know!

Make and give away as many as you like, but please don't make them for commercial use. Thank you!

Friday, 19 June 2015

Tom's Quilt

So my nephew is 9 this weekend, and some time ago I noticed a picture in his room that he had designed on the computer.

And I thought, "hmmm, that would be a great quilt"! And so I've made that great quilt!

The cat thinks it's great too!  The backing was a tad short thanks to a red pirate bandana I rashly chopped off my red fabric... But of course a pieced backing is always more exciting, and being a lazy bones, I wouldn't have bothered if I didn't have to!
And here's the lable

You can see the quilting here, rainbow variegated Gutterman Sulky 30 cotton- and a wavy stitch - thanks Amanda Jean for the inspiration! 

It was fun and quick. I love it, hope Tom does too!! 

linking up to Finish It Friday at Crazy Mom!
Crazymom quilts