FMQ 2

Welcome :)

The weather here has been very blustery and the leaves are being blown off the trees whether they like it or not! A friend gave me a little bouquet of leaves on Tuesday,all tied up with a bit of ribbon. As the days have passed the bouquet has dried out and the beautiful leaves have become crispy, it’s brought a piece of Autumn into the home.

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I’ve managed to watch another couple of chapters of my Craftsy free motion quilting class and had the time to do a bit of practising too.

This session has been all about echoing and stitching in the ditch (fmq style).

Here are my samples – be gentle ;)

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A few swirls with echo lines, pebbles and a heart outlined with very shaky lines!

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A vine with leaves, I like this one a lot :)

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and finally a grid to practise sewing straight lines horizontally and vertically (you can see where I’ve drawn chalk lines to help me), another heart with an infill design and at the top a doodle of mine trying to copy something I’d seen on another blog.

I didn’t find this session as easy as the first, clearly I need more practise with straight lines, back stitching and echoing. But first I shall have to make another quilt sandwich as this one is full up. Thank you for all your encouraging words last time they really helped to keep me going on my fmq journey :)

Until next time,

Chris x

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Miss Evangeline

Hello and welcome :)

Introducing Miss Evangeline Mouse!

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Finally finished with her cute little nose and pretty skirt (she first appeared in this post). Of course she needed a friend to keep her company…

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and another friend…

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and yet another friend…!

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these gorgeous little mice will be put away for my craft stall in November, which means that if I want one I shall have to make another ;)

Until next time,

Chris x

If you’d like to comment and/or ‘like’ this post, and I hope you do! – then just click on the post title and you will be taken to the comment page – look forward to hearing from you.

Feed dogs down

Welcome :)

As I shared in my last post I’ve bought myself a Craftsy class on free motion quilting to help me build up my quilting skills so I will be a bit more confident about tackling the quilting on my Christmas quilt to name but one quilt which is waiting on my ‘to do’ pile.

As this was my very first class I wasn’t sure what to expect but have been very pleasantly surprised. So far I’ve watched 3 of the chapters and have had a go at all the designs shown. I’ve found the hints and tips the tutor gives really helpful and even at this early stage of practising I think my fmq-ing has improved!

Favourite tips so far are;

* When quilting a sharp corner such as a square or a star hesitate at the corner so 2 stitches are made rather than whizzing round onto the next side of the shape. This gives you a sharper point.

* When you stop have your needle down but then when you start have your needle up to avoid that jump you often get.

What do you think?

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Stippling was about all I’d done before and this ribbon effect is a variation on stippling – I do like the curvy one.
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Loopy lines with motifs, I played about with hearts and stars – that star one would look good on my Christmas quilt.
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Loopy lines again this time with flowers and leaves.
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and finally a leaf design I doodled.

Given that before this class I’d only done stippling, I’m quietly pleased. The next challenge will be seeing if I can do it on a large quilt.

Until next time,

Chris x

If you’d like to comment and/or ‘like’ this post, and I hope you do! – then just click on the post title and you will be taken to the comment page – look forward to hearing from you.

Revisiting

Hello and welcome :)

This week I’ve noticed that Christmas has arrived in the shops. The food shops have aisles dedicated to cards, wrapping paper and gifts and the other shops are advertising gift ideas. It certainly hit home just how fast this year is whizzing by, and with that in mind I started thinking about the New Year Ideas, Resolutions call them what you will, that I set myself back in January.

Having a Blog made it easy to remind myself of what they were;

1. Make a quilt from an original design

2. Finish my two Christmas quilts for Christmas 2014

3. Try a new to me craft

4. Sell some of my hand made items

5. Use up some of my stash.

and I was pleasantly surprised at how many I’d at least started so here’s a review :)

I’m going to claim my Daisy Chain quilt for number 1 even though it isn’t finished, and I suppose if we’re talking mini quilts I could also claim my Rose Basket and Gaggle of Geese in that category too.

I did try encaustic art as a new craft so that’s number 3.

And as I’ve already mentioned in an earlier post I’ve signed up to do a craft stall nearer Christmas so I’m getting busy making things for that – if anyone has any ideas of gifts that might be popular please let me know :)

Number 5 is covered by my EPP quilt which is mainly scraps from my stash (still plenty more of those though ;) )

That just leaves number 2, and finishing the Christmas quilts made me gulp! One of them has the pieces all neatly cut out and is patiently waiting to be sewn (and has been for well over a year now!)

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and the other is sewn and layered up and ready to be quilted.

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My only excuse not to quilt it is that I don’t want to mess it up by doing a bad job – am I the only one who thinks like that?

With this in mind I’ve bought myself my first Craftsy class on free motion quilting. I’m going to work my way through the ‘chapters’ and have made myself a sandwich layer ready to start practising on, so that should help to keep me busy.

Who else has New Year Resolutions to do still?

Until next time,

Chris x

If you’d like to comment and/or ‘like’ this post, and I hope you do! – then just click on the post title and you will be taken to the comment page – look forward to hearing from you.

 

Catch that Thread

Welcome :)

This week was my once a month quilting group and we were given a little project to have a go at. A thread catcher with a twist – literally with a twist because you have to twist it to open it and twist it to shut it.

Now I’ve seen these around the internet for years and never felt the urge to make one but in a quilt meeting you have to show willing don’t you? So I got stitching and made myself one.

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The ring we used for the top was a 1/2 inch slice from an old Pringles tube reinforced with packing tape – very frugal :)

I do like the design as it neatly folds up and doesn’t take up much space, can’t think why I didn’t want to make one now I’ve got one!!

Here are links to a couple of tutorials for them in case you want to have a go.

Red Hen Fabrics – this was the tutorial we used and is all hand sewn, they used a wooden ring.

Quilary – this tutorial shows how to make one using a sewing machine with a bit of hand stitching and uses stiff tape instead of a ring.

I’m really pleased with mine, in fact I think I shall have to make another just to try out Quilary’s method ;)

Until next time,

Chris x

If you’d like to comment and/or ‘like’ this post, and I hope you do! – then just click on the post title and you will be taken to the comment page – look forward to hearing from you.

Off on a Tangent

Welcome :)

This week has seen a real Autumnal feel come to my neck of the woods, the leaves are turning colour and are being blown about by the swirling winds, the spiders are out in force and weaving webs in all the hedges and it’s steadily getting chillier. Time to get ready to hunker down and cosy up inside! Enjoy your Spring those of you in the southern hemisphere while we enjoy our Autumn.

I’ve had a bit of an overdose of sewing recently with the banners, I’ve still been busy with them and have finished the one I was particularly working on.

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Some of my fellow banner team are already returning their panels to me and as they come back I’m sewing the hems, if they need it, and removing all the markings.

As progress is all in hand with the banners  I’ve been having a bit of Time Out.

I decided that I needed to put my needle down and pick up my hook! Sometimes I just can’t face doing another stitch so rather than stop creating I switch mediums – how many of you can identify with that?

I’ve had a hankering to crochet a mouse for some time now (who knows why these daft urges ‘get’ us?!) and have been looking round for a cute pattern with no success. However, this week I saw just what I was after and snapped up the pattern.

I’ve been busy hooking away and here she is – so far – she still needs to have her face stitched on and to be clothed (after all here in the UK winter is a coming!)

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As you can see she helped me with the sewing!

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The pattern is by CARO created and can be found here.

Until next time,

Chris x

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Same old,same old

Welcome :)

This week has seen yet more progress on the banner project. Little by little all those little jobs are being accomplished.

Every now and again I’ve been doing a bit of hand sewing on the panel I’m doing (with a little help from my friends!) I’m sewing down black bias tubes to outline the cross, this is the second time they’ve been stitched down. First time I used my sewing machine, didn’t like it so unpicked it and started again!

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Yesterday a friend came round with her sewing machine and we spent a happy couple of hours sewing hems on all the panels I had in my home. Black on black is never easy to sew but we were lucky that it was an amazingly sunny afternoon so the light was as good as it could be :)

The next job for me is to find any chalk or water soluble pen markings on the panels and get rid of them.

What sewing are you doing now?

Until next time,

Chris x

If you’d like to comment and/or ‘like’ this post, and I hope you do! – then just click on the post title and you will be taken to the comment page – look forward to hearing from you.

Play Time

Welcome :)

Goodness I’ve had a busy but massively productive week. All the Church banner panels have been prepared and all but one has been delivered to the next person in the chain. These skilled volunteers have three weeks to stitch before the panels are due to come back to me for their final finishing off and then the big reveal should happen at the end of October.

It feels very exciting now!

This week I got an email from Freebies for Crafters and the free project it flagged up was a lovely little pouch made from hexagons. Elena of Momentos de Costura has written a really clear tutorial and I couldn’t resist having a go ;)

It’s exactly the sort of project where you can use up some of your favourite scraps of fabric, and I definitely had fun choosing scraps to use.

Using Elena’s diagram I arranged my hexagons and sewed them to make this,

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added a magnetic clasp – very easy to do!

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made sure I put the back of the clip on in the right place!

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and sewed it up

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et voilà…

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However I did notice that mine was slightly different than Elena’s. The diagram makes a more closed shaped pouch – good for not letting the contents fall out but not quite so easy to get into. So I altered mine to give me this…

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If you want to make one and prefer the open top then just omit sewing 4 to 4 and 5 to 5 on Elena’s diagram

Now to find something to put in it :)

Enjoy your week end.

Until next time,

Chris x

If you’d like to comment and/or ‘like’ this post, and I hope you do! – then just click on the post title and you will be taken to the comment page – look forward to hearing from you.

 

Banner mania

Welcome lovely people :)

Well the week end saw hubby and I deliver our youngest to University and come home to an empty nest. So far it’s been very strange not to have one of our offspring in the home, I keep wandering into their rooms and mooching about before I give myself a little shake and get on with life again!

I’ve been determined to keep myself busy and had promised myself to ‘break the back’ of the Church banners I’m helping to make.

Monday afternoon saw three of us Banner group members working hard to prepare a couple of panels ready for sewing by other members.

This is what we achieved…please forgive the quality of the photos :)

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The candles will be outlined with black bias tube to give it a more stained glass effect.
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This one is already stitched, so we just prepared and attached the lettering which is now ready for stitching down.
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Very blurred photo – sorry!
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Just like the ‘Service’ panel this one is mainly finished just needing the lettering stitched down.

Lots of the black lettering was prepared and tweaked and twiddled before sticking on.

Picture pieces were cut out and positioned and tweaked and twiddled too.

Lots of shifting pieces left, right, up, down, rotated clockwise and anti clockwise before we were satisfied.

On Tuesday afternoon I thought I’d be a whizz and sew some bias tube down using my machine but after doing it I decided I didn’t like it so spent a good hour unpicking it all and will redo it by hand – sometime!

Today – Wednesday – I have plans to do some more with a friend’s help.

I’m feeling really happy about the progress now and am looking forward to sitting back a bit while other members get busy stitching :)

Just a little reminder, if you want the chance to make the Travelling Bunny – see post here – then please make sure you write a comment on the end of that post. I shall choose a name out of a hat on Friday.

Until next time,

Chris x

I’m linking this up to Esther Aliu’s WIPs on Wednesdays.

If you’d like to comment and/or ‘like’ this post, and I hope you do! – then just click on the post title and you will be taken to the comment page – look forward to hearing from you.