Monday 26 February 2018

Six, Seven, Eight...

Just prior to Christmas 2016, about two and a half months ago, I set myself the challenge of trying to make six baby/cot sized quilts for several women from a Mothers of Pre-Schoolers (MOPS) group that I'm connected with. Several of the women were pregnant with their second children and I had often looked after their first toddler for over a year or so.

I managed to get the first five done and then had a friend ask about a couple of the quilts as she had two nieces due to give birth early in February 2018 too. So we organised for her to have two of the quilts and she gave me some money towards making more quilts - she's a good friend and knows how I love to buy fabric!!

I completed this one which was the sixth in the queue:

Size: 43" by 46"

It was only after I'd passed it to my friend I realised I hadn't taken a final photo with the binding completed, but you get the idea. The blocks were from some fabric with bright coloured cars, but the navy background made the whole look a little darker than I wanted for a child's quilt. So taking the cue from the cars, I surrounded them with the bright orange, green, turquoise and reds, after framing them with either the grey or cream.

Then a couple of friends were having a go at a strip quilt. The sort where you get your backing piece ready, lay the wadding on top and pin those two layers. You then begin from one end of the quilt and sew through all three layers, strip by strip. Sounded like it was worth trying, so I gave it a go.
This is the result:

Or at least this is a section where you can see I had fun letting some animals pop up from time to time. It turned out that a jelly roll I'd had for several years was ideal with its yellows and greens. And of course being a jelly roll it co-ordinated well. A lesson learnt as the beginning of the quilt didn't seem to meld as well as towards the end. No matter, I'm sure a baby/toddler won't care and mum will be OK with it too. 

Size: 45" by 55"

You can see the lines of quilting that develop as you go. I still think I may do a stipple on the front to hold it a little more firmly as I had some sections that were a little larger than just one strip. It is a quick way to create a quilt though. So that was number seven. 

I also had a fat quarter of some cute fabric that also lent itself to choosing bright frames for the blocks. 

So this piece with its farm buildings, trees and windmills found a home with three inch edging/sashing pieces in the form of quarter log cabins and a wide couple of borders.

Again a gentle stipple was fun to go around it. I also made a bit of a challenge for myself getting that brown border to continue in the same direction not just for the border, but also for the binding. It does make the corners a touch thick, but thank goodness for a walking foot to help attach binding!
Since the background of the feature fabric had pale grey in it, I thought this piece with grey and lemon from my stash worked pretty well for the backing. 

Size: 43" square. 

So a win there too, as I am aiming to use up stash as much as possible in preference to having to buy backings. 
There are numbers six, seven and eight, but I have a feeling there could be more of these in the future. Small quits are such a satisfying thing to make as a result is provided quite quickly and you can try such different shapes and blocks for such varied results. 
Well, on to the other half dozen or so projects still calling out to me - they haven't really been forgotten, just on the back burner for a while. 

Until next time,

Saturday 10 February 2018

Old Fashioned

A while ago I was glancing through Pinterest (as you do) when I came across this pattern called Scrappy Susannah Seemed like a good one to me, especially when I realised I could do as many blocks as I felt like to create a baby quilt.

While the four I have done to this point have been pretty bright, primary type colours and quite bold, see firstsecondthird and fourth, this number five cot quilt is more sedate, low volume, call it what you will, but to me it seems like old fashioned. Maybe its the fabrics or the combination with the pattern, but I enjoyed finding scraps and seeing it come together quite quickly from the large blocks.

And wouldn't you know it, from the fabrics I brought down I found the border fabric with its green butterflies edged in pink that seemed to fit the feel of the quilt really well. 

Below is a close up of the point where the two blocks connect, with the green and mauve. I'm grateful to one of my clever friends for showing me once how she loves the reverse of some fabrics. The green floral on the bottom corner left of the mauve/green junction is one where I originally had it on its 'front' side and it seemed too loud for the block. Being limited in my choices (being away from home at our holiday place and a twenty minute drive to the fabric shop where I'd probably been too often anyway for this trip!) I flipped it over and it seemed to fit in far better. 

And for the backing, again I searched through my limited basket and found a piece I've had for several years and I'd brought it for its pastel type colouring that I thought might suit a baby quilt in some form. Of course there wasn't sufficient so I needed to add borders, but I was quite happy with the stripe that comes from a Victoria & Albert collection, which also seemed to suit the old fashioned feel. 

The small gold rectangle in the corner is of course the 'extra' bit I needed but it does pick up the first inner border and binding from the front so I'm OK with it. You can also see the square quilting and small loops I did in the non negative spaces (or white and cream). Using a variegated thread means that the squares and the 'mandarin segments' as my supportive other half calls them show up with a lovely changing colour.   

Since a friend of mine recently had a 'great niece' I think this one will come out of the six I'm aiming at for our Mothers of Pre-Schoolers group - and I'll just have to make another!!

Quilt number six is sandwiched and ready to be quilted but as we sadly leave our lovely beach spot today it will have to wait until we get 'home' - though here has felt like home since I've been here since the week before Christmas. 

During that time we also had our youngest son's wedding, to his American fiancee. It was a beautiful day on the beach, rather like this. I hope to show you photos soon, but suffice to say everyone enjoyed it, even eldest son who managed to get some sunburn.  

But for now, we leave all this behind to return to routine and life as we currently know it. Having had an amazing Christmas and a wedding, truly unforgettable. 

Until next time,