Tuesday, 10 October 2017

September ...

started wonderfully with an engagement ...


Congratulations to Poppy and Andy!

In class this month, I made this little robin ... going to call him Ray after my Dad ...


David and I spent a fabulous week in this house in Cornwall ...

Atlantic View
View from our bedroom window
The house had a fantastic conservatory which became a perfect sewing room .... 


During our stay I made my first baby quilt ...


As you know, I'm trying to get to grips with free motion quilting!  This quilt is made from a panel which I got from one of Steph's sales at Cupcake Cottons.  The panel has "Twinkle twinkle little star" around the border so I quilted the middle part using a loop and star design and then just cross-hatched the borders and I'm pretty pleased with the end result ...


I bound the quilt by using the backing fabric - a new technique I found on one of my favourite blogs - Cluck Cluck Sew ...


I also made a table topper (again a pattern from Cluck Cluck Sew) which I free motion quilted ... I think I'm improving!!!




During the week I managed to visit three quilting shops ... Coast and Country Crafts and Quilts, The Sewing Studio and Cowslip Workshops ...

Some goodies I came home with!

Vanessa x



Sunday, 3 September 2017

August ...

sometimes you see fabric that you just have to have ... like this Garden Notes range from Moda ... I just adore it!  

Lucy at Secret Garden Quilting wraps fabric up beautifully!
It's been a busy summer with graduations, weddings and WOMAD and I've not had much time to quilt!  I was beginning to feel a little frustrated about this and needed a quilting fix so I pieced this quilt top ...


and I felt much better afterwards!  I used a pattern called Garden Trellis from a Pam and Nicky Lintott book which I've had for years!  It went together beautifully and was so quick - just what I needed!  I've called it "A walk in the park"!

I spent a lovely wet Saturday tidying up my sewing cupboard ...

Before!

After!
I need to do some serious stash busting this autumn/winter!  I've got SO many patterns I want to use - beach huts, jugs, buttons, umbrellas, dishes - the list goes on and on!  So I've made a start on a quilt called Floral Bouquet ... using fabric from my stash ...

Think I got this fabric from John Lewis?
First time I've used this book!
So pleased!
This month in class at Cupcake Cottons I got going on my "Little House on the Prairie" quilt  ...

Steph is helping me to design it!


And finally, I can announce the "Flowers in the garden" quilt was for Velma's 80th Birthday!  Velma is a dear friend of my Aunty Pauline.  When my Aunty Pauline was unwell last year, Velma was amazing, so this is a little thank you gift and a Happy 80th Birthday gift!

Loving being able to make labels!


I've sadly not had time to make any little houses this month - will have to double my efforts in September!


Vanessa x









Wednesday, 2 August 2017

July ...

I turn up to class at Cupcake Cottons and I'm never sure what Steph has planned!  This month she had us all making these sweet make-up bags ...


Finally quilted "flowers in the garden" ...



and in August I will be able to reveal who the quilt is for!

July has been busy with graduations, WOMAD and Dan and April's wedding but I did manage to grab an afternoon of sewing with Jenny to make some summer bunting ...





I call it "cheats bunting" because it comes in panels and all you have to do is put the panel right sides together with some backing fabric and stitch around the triangles.  You cut around the stitching, turn the triangles out and press then stitch them to a long piece of cotton twill - simple!

Vanessa x


Sunday, 2 July 2017

June ...

not had a lot of time for sewing this month I'm afraid!  However, I have been back to Amsterdam where my quilting story began ... so lovely to revisit old haunts - particularly these two quilting shops ...


Den Haan & Wagenmakers

Birdblocks

Same lovely Dutch lady at Birdblocks!
And, of course, had to make some purchases ...



And it was so good to visit our old house ...


It looked just the same only not as many bikes outside!

I have, however, had another sewing day with Jenny and made this bag with the beautiful fabric she brought me back from Material Obsession in Sydney - did I say, picked for me by Kathy Doughty herself...




I wasn't really keen to start because I was nervous of making a mistake with the fabric - it would be a long way to go to get more - but Jenny made me do it!  Sometimes you need a little push from your friends!  Thanks Jen!

Jenny with Kathy at Material Obsession

Vanessa x


Thursday, 1 June 2017

May ...

things I've learnt so far about machine quilting ... 
* you really need to press and baste well!
* it shows up any sloppy piecing - help!
* it is SO time consuming! 
* and finally you need plenty of thread!

First Bernina quilt finished!

Love the way I can now make labels!

A close up of quilting!

So pleased with my first quilt made with my new Bernina!  It's far from perfect but I'm thrilled with the end result and I can't wait to get started on the next one!  I called the quilt "Beauty and the Beast" because the fabulous colours remind me of the opening scene in the new Beauty and the Beast film AND if you remember I've nicknamed my Bernina 'The Beast'!!! :)

Archie always appreciates my quilts!

Just to warn you, I'm going to be making another bag!  My dear friend Jennifer has brought me back some beautiful fabric from Australia.  Jenny visited Material Obsession and Kathy Doughty herself picked out some of her own fabric designs for me!  Sue, I haven't forgotten the fabric that you brought me back from Sri Lanka or the fabric you brought me back from Tanzania Poppy! I do have ideas for all these wonderful fabrics ...
Fabric by Kathy Doughty
My next project at Cupcake Cottons is a "Little House on the Prairie" quilt.  Very twee I know!!!  Well my Mum bought me this book for my birthday and I already had some of the fabric from Andover fabrics ...


So I've made a start ... I'm designing my own medallion quilt using some ideas I like in the book and also some traditional blocks like flying geese, bears paw, log cabin and I'm hoping to edge the quilt with prairie points!

Can you see little Laura Ingalls running towards the cabin?
I turned up at Cupcake Cottons last time expecting to continue with this quilt but Steph decided that we would all make cushions instead ... which was absolutely fine with me as I've been wanting to make another of these 'quilt as you go' cushions for ages.  So we picked some fabrics and away we all went ...

Perfect colours for our dining room
Sadly, I have only managed to make two little houses for my scrap quilt this month ...


Oh and I wanted to show you my latest tapestry ...  I stitched this last year but it went terribly wonky and I struggled to find anyone able to frame it.  I ended up searching wonky tapestry framing on Google and it brought up a blog by Andy Parks at Petersfield Framing Studio. So I took it down to the Studio the next time I was visiting Poppy.  Andy said he had seen worse - think he was only being kind!  Anyway, this is the end result and I am absolutely thrilled  ...


And finally just wanted to share Poppy's beautiful crochet ... it's so neat!



That's all for now!

Vanessa x











Sunday, 30 April 2017

April ...

my favourite month - especially exciting when this box arrives ....



my Bernina 770QE and I've nicknamed it "The Beast"!



I felt so nervous to use it and I wasn't sure where to begin ... SO ... decided to take a deep breath and just make some little houses ...


and a table mat ...



as you do!  This pattern came from Teach Me to Machine Quilt by Pat Sloan.  It's a brilliant book to get you started with free motion quilting.  I think I have many happy sewing hours ahead!

I've got two quits which I've pieced and are all set to baste and machine quilt ... 



I've had this Pam and Nicky Lintott pattern and Moda fabric called PotLuck for years!  The fabric is so bright and cheerful ...


The second quilt pattern came from Popular Patchwork, March 2013!!! And the fabric is called Padstow Range again by Moda ...



I've basted Potluck using two planks of wood and I'm hoping for no puckering on the back!



I'm now in the process of machine quilting - it takes longer than you think!

Vanessa x