Posts tagged ‘Patchwork’

August 12, 2013

Festival of Quilts 2013

Ok so it’s been ages since my last post, but let’s not dwell on that! ¬†I have a recent flurry of craftiness to report on.

Firstly the Festival of Quilts. ¬†This was my fifth year at the festival and it’s one of my favourite days of the year. ¬†I love looking at all of the inspiring quits and stocking up my fabric stash. ¬†But this year it was more exciting because I entered a quit. ¬†I entered the new ‘My First Quilt’ category with my first quilt. ¬†As it was a new category I had no idea what the standard would be or the type of thing people would enter, but I had no expectations of winning but just thought it would be fun to enter. ¬†And it was, it was very exciting (although I was a little nervous) to see it hanging in the exhibition.



I didn’t place in the category but it was fun to enter and has made be consider one of the other categories in the future, maybe the miniature quilt category (a bit more manageable time-wise).

Here are some of the other quilts that caught my eye.

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And some of the fabric I bought. ¬†I’m loving the combination of coral, aqua and grey at the moment. ¬†I think this will be a new quilt.


June 17, 2012

Using up the stash!

Well it feels like we’ve had the wettest, coldest and darkest June ever in the UK! ¬†While I am disappointed that we can’t be out in the sun, having bbqs and enjoying the new grass in the garden, it does mean that I don’t mind staying in making.¬† My current aim: use up some of the stash!

This is my dresser. I got it in a much more orange pine state from a charity shop. I painted it white (many layers!) and changed the handles to make a cute place to keep my sewing stuff. In addition to the fat quarters you can see, the bottom cupboard is also full of fabric and other bits including ribbon, buttons and cotton.  My mission is to use some of it up.

I know from reading other people’s blogs that I’m not alone in accumulating significant amounts of fabric, and reassured when I see that other people have way more than I do. ¬†I have a habit of buying things without a purpose, just because I like it and buying more than I need for projects and never getting round to using up the left overs. ¬†So my aim is to make things that start to use up all of the bits and pieces that I have.

A top tip that I picked up from somewhere is to cut scraps of fabric into squares ready to use for patchwork rather than leaving them stashed away as scraps.  This makes it easy to create something like these patchwork cushions, particularly if your fabrics coordinate.

Left overs from this quilt

Left overs from a few projects

(the backs)

I also¬†conquered the zip and made these little zip pouches using 5″x5″ squares (same size as in the cushions), bits of ribbon, and some calico that I had left over. ¬†These were a bit fiddly but worked out ok.

And I made another baby blanket, again using 5″x5″ squares. ¬†I love the colour combination on this one.¬†I used some satin bias binding for the edges which makes it nice and tactile and fleece¬†on the back for comfort.

Fabric purchased from the Festival of Quilts 2011 (must use these up before going again in August!)

Still plenty of material to go. ¬†I’m going to struggle more with the bits that don’t seem to match anything. ¬†I’m thinking maybe a scrappy quilt with lots of different colours.

March 17, 2012

Home Sewn Make

I got a subscription to Making Magazine free with my Tesco clubcard vouchers (yay) which has recently come to an end (boo). ¬†Whilst I love getting home once a month to find a magazine full of craftly things waiting for me on my door mat, I must admit that I haven’t made many of the projects from them. ¬†But in the last issue I got there was a free insert with 6 sewing projects from various recent publication.

I liked the look of this bag and had a friends birthday coming up so I had a go at making one for her.

The pattern is from Everything Patchwork, by Corinne Crasbercu.  The instructions were simple and easy to follow although there were some confusing measurements on the diagram, which I chose to ignore.

I’m pleased with the result. ¬†It’s not quite as striking as the one in the picture but I think that suited the recipient. ¬†I was going to make a flower¬†corsage¬†to go with it but I ran out of time which is a shame but hey-ho, we can’t do it all. ¬†I like the spotty inside…

Next up I’m hoping to have a go at an embroidery project. ¬†Hopefully not too long before I have results to share!

November 30, 2011

Presenting my third quilt!!

I introduced this quilt here. ¬†I made it for my sister for her 30th birthday and it is now signed, sealed and delivered so here it is…

(I managed to catch a moment of sun to take some pictures!)

I was very happy with the final result.  I love the mix of colours against the grey solid background.  I think the fabrics stand out really wall in the simple design, which is why I chose the simple design, along with time constraints.  Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of the back (oops).

I quilted it with a simple stitch in the ditch along the horizontal joints. ¬†I haven’t really experimented much with other quilting designs, maybe on the next one!

I love the tones and patterns of these fabrics

This is the third quilt that I’ve made. ¬†The first one was for me, and the second for my mum which I haven’t posted yet but will do soon.

It’s make, make, make here as this weekend I’m having my first craft stall with some of the ladies from sewing group. ¬†It is the first time any of us have tried to sell any of our makes so it will be interesting to see how it goes. ¬†I will post with an update and photos of the fair.

October 5, 2011

New project low-down

Way too long since my last post.  This is due to general business, and not much of the making kind unfortunately.

But anyway, this is my latest project which is currently work in progress. ¬†Here are the essential facts…

What: A quilt

Why: A present for a special person on a special birthday

Size: A lap quilt approx 60″ by 60″

Target finish date: Early November (making it by far my quickest quilt.  Not that hard given that the first one took two years!)

Design: I wanted to do a simple, square design as it suited the person I am giving it to and I figured it will be quickest. ¬†I came across this quilt on a blog that I’ve recently started following and it looked perfect so I am doing something very similar

Fabrics: A mix of blue/greens selected from the vast range at the Quilt Festival.  I really love the patterned fabrics and I went with grey for the background colour because I like grey and thought it would be fresh but not too bright.  Turns out the person I am making it for has just got a new grey sofa, happy coincidence

Grey, blue, green colour palette


Progress: I’m just over two weeks in. ¬†I’ve cut all of the squares and have pieced all of the strips. ¬†Not a bad start but I’ve run out of grey fabric (I’m not great at planning these things!), so waiting for a trip to the fabric shop at the weekend

Strips pieced together


In the mean time: I’ve done a fair bit of baking, started my next baby blanket and had an amazing, unseasonably warm weekend away with friends. ¬†See below…

Cherry and coconut cakes


Strawberry cheesecake muffins


Chocolate tiffin in the fridge


The state of my kitchen at the end!


Beautiful beach in West Wales

Next up date will be sooner (hopefully x)

September 18, 2011

Yay, a finished project

I’ve finished the baby blanket I started a couple of weeks ago, using some of my quilt festival fabric (and some from last year). ¬†Here it is:

I’ve kept it simple using five by six, 5″ squares pieced together for the top and lovely soft polar fleece for the back (with no batting/wadding as the fleece makes it nice and warm anyway). ¬†I found this tutorial from one of my favourite blogs to create a boarder/binding.

Boarder/binding pinned to the fleece backing

It works well but I found it a little fiddly in the corners and found I had to stop after one edge then re-adjust the material to do the next edge.

The corners

I was worried about the fleece stretching if I quilted across it so I did a square 1/2″ in from every other square which worked fine.

I love the snail fabric!

Finished size is approximately 25″ x 30″ so I’m thinking it will be suitable as a pram blanket. ¬†I plan to make more of these with different fabrics, potentially for a craft stall at some point in the future. ¬†Hopefully you will see more here soon.

Lovely fleece back

September 10, 2011

Bits and bobs

Sadly not much creative activity to blog about recently. ¬†I’ve been busy with work, my church holiday bible club last week (entertaining 170+ kids aged four to eleven for four mornings, awesome but shattering with work in the afternoons!) and various evening activities starting up after the summer break.

There have been a few food creations though. ¬†I managed to make a Tagine one evening last week. ¬†If you can call it a tagine as it wasn’t cooked in a tagine dish and I didn’t follow a tagine recipe but I did base it on one I have made in the past. ¬†Here’s the basics of what I did:

1. Heated some oil in a casserole dish on the hob.

2. Added chopped vegetables roughly in the following order: onion (let them fry a bit), butternut squash, yellow pepper, a few new potatoes and an aubergine.  Stirring in between and letting them fry a bit.

3. I then added spices.  My supplies are limited at the moment so I just added come paprika, cayenne pepper and cinnamon.  Just a few shakes of each, maybe a little more paprika.

4. Added two tins of chopped tomatoes, a vegetable stock cube in a little water and some tomato purée

5.  Finally I added a handful of dried apricots chopped and a couple of dried figs chopped (these virtually disappear but give a lovely sweetness)

6. Brought it to the boil then put on the lid and put it in a low oven whilst I went out to Zumba.

7. Back from Zumba (just over an hour later) and it was pretty much ready.

I had it with cous cous two nights and put four portions in the freezer. ¬†Easy, and fairly quick for a week night if you exclude the oven time. ¬†As you can see I slightly over filled my dish so it boiled over a little in the oven but that didn’t really matter, just a bit more cleaning up to do.

I also made a chocolate cheesecake using this recipe from All Recipes

I didn’t get a picture of the finished product or get to taste it because I gave it away. ¬†But it looked pretty good. ¬†It was a little too gooey, it could have done with being a bit more set and I used white chocolate instead of dark because that’s what I had and it lacked a bit of flavour strength (from what I could tell licking the bowl!). ¬†It also dirties a lot of bowls…

Whipped cream, cream cheese, melted chocolate, cocoa powder mixed with water (off photo bowl for crushing biscuit and pan for melting butter)

My only bit of sewing has been at sewing group where I did manage to get all of the squares for one of my baby blankets pieced together. ¬†The squares are 5″ and I did five by six. ¬†Hopefully I will add the border and the backing tomorrow and take a better picture.

August 14, 2011

First Quilt Creation

My first blog, about my first quilt!  Well, the first quilt I started anyway, not the first I have completed.  But it is now finished, two years after I first ventured into the world of quilts, and what an amazing world it is!

The idea of making a quilt arose when I was in a homeware and gift shop in Spain and my mum was looking for something to buy me for my birthday.  They had some lovely quilts but none of them were quite the right colours for what I wanted.  So I thought why not make my own?  My birthday present that year was then money towards the materials I needed to make my quilt.

A trip to the Festival of Quilts at the Birmingham NEC a couple of weeks later (more on the festival to follow) and I had most of my fabric.¬† I didn‚Äôt follow a pattern but I did find ‘The Compendium of Quilting Techniques’ by Susan Brisco very useful as a guide to each stage of the process.¬† I‚Äôve worked on it in fits and starts over the last two years, sometimes waiting because I needed to find more fabric (one of the down sides of making it up as you go along) and sometimes because I was working on other things.¬† I was put off by the thought of the binding so it has sat in an almost finished state waiting to be bound for a number of months.¬† But actually, when I got on to it the binding came together fairly quickly and it was soon done.

I am very happy with the result.  I like the mix of fabrics and the pattern.  It’s not perfect and there are definitely things I have learnt and would do differently if I was doing it again but overall I love it and have loved working on it!

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