Wednesday 29 August 2018

WOW: Running Out Of Walls!

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays
I love Wednesdays because I have the whole day set aside just to work on WIPs and make some progress on those designs I know I want to see finished... err, in my lifetime. I used to have a 'schedule' but I'm over that now. I find I get so much more done when I work on what I feel like doing rather than what I should be doing, so although I don't have any finishes to show for my Wednesdays yet, I am plodding along nicely across several projects.

Today I'm working on some new designs I'm keeping under wraps, so I thought I would show you to view from my sewing room. Above is my design wall with Morning Glory blocks sitting around patiently waiting for me. Outside my room, I have started spreading to the corridor walls as I'm out of space for hanging up my designs. My family can't understand why I need to keep spreading my creativity through the house like this, but little do they know, I haven't even started! Today I intend to take over the whole dining room table with my Brother Scan n Cut machine... I don't need another sewing studio, I need a whole other house!

What's Your WOW?

Wednesday 22 August 2018

WOW: Making Clamshells for Shelly!

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays
I've fallen into a nice new routine. Each Tuesday I take a Tai Chi class and afterwards I drive to a fabric store right around the corner. I first popped in to find a button one week, but then I started making it a somewhat regular thing to browse the new fabric arrivals and now I find myself in there every single Tuesday without fail. Then, once I've made my purchase, I pop into a cafe across the road for a post fabric coffee. Suffice to say, I love Tuesdays.
My only 'rule' is that I'm only allowed to buy fabric for an active WIP project. As I dedicate each Wednesday to WIPs, this is actually working really well. Yesterday I went in looking for fabrics to finish my Shelly quilt top. I really love my Shelly quilt and am making my own up in a colour scheme very similar to the one below. This was my first colour arrangement and it has just 'stuck' with me. I have used up all the black and white prints from my stash, so I am actively collecting minimum cuts of black and white print fabrics as and when I see them. Yesterday I picked up 12 new prints and I think I might nearly have enough now.
So today I am making clamshells. So easy, so satisfying and the best bit is, I'll end up with this gorgeous quilt for my efforts. It's going to be a fabulous day!

What's Your WOW?

Tuesday 21 August 2018

Book of the Week: Cat Lady Embroidery

I'm making plans to get back into the practice of regular hand embroidery in 2019. It's something I've neglected for over 20 years and I'm itching to enjoy the satisfaction of slow 'thread painting' in the winter months. As part of my preparation plans, I'm thinking about what skills I want to focus in on for the years ahead. And in my world, this means more books.

I know, I know, I just spent 5 years clearing out over 400 titles from my huge collection. And I must say, those books I parted with served me very well. But each had served it's time. It wasn't required anymore for I already knew everything in it or had exceeded what it offered. In a very real sense, I outgrew most of my craft and DIY books. And that's a good thing. So now I'm re-gathering my creative interests to move into areas as yet uncharted. And again, this means more books. Books that challenge me, inspire me and take me somewhere new.

So as I shop my new library, I'll be sharing what I've chosen in case you're looking for a new adventure too.

My first new book is this Cat Lady Embroidery. How gorgeous are these feline faces? I think I'm going to have to make ALL of them! It seems a good ease back into hand stitching and lots of fun too. These will be super cute badges that I'm already planning to turn into magnets for my fridge. And why not?

Now, for some thread shopping..

Monday 20 August 2018

'Secret Garden' by Rohini Pellizzon

What a riot of colour! This applique masterpiece is made by Rohini Pellizzon and the details are mesmerizing! From the yellow roses to the romantic red blooms hiding a ginger cat, every inch of this quilt is superb and the eye dances around these colour combinations in total joy. 

I love it!  The punchy pink takes this design to another level and it's a pleasure to just sit back and drink it all in. I love the magenta and blue used to anchor the bright yellow roses and balance the violet hued blooms. What a stunner.

I wasn't as happy with my own Secret Garden quilt top as I should have been, mainly because I picked a dull green background which I now regret. So for me to see other Secret Garden quilts is a real motivation to get mine 'fixed'. With my own quilt, I'm going to have to quilt it with bright white thread to 'lift' the background colour, but for now, I'll just enjoy all the drop stitch gorgeous Secret Garden's that come my way. 

If you'd like to read more about Secret Garden, you can check out the Secret Garden post archive right here on this blog by clicking the image below.

'Secret Garden' 
Read more about this quilt by clicking here now

--------------------------- Open Quilt Gallery--------------------------- 
Thanks to Rohini Pellizzon for sharing her finished quilt with us all to take inspiration from. If you'd like to see more finished quilts made from any of my patterns, visit my Open Gallery. It's a place for all quilters who make any of my quilts to show off their creations in a central online gallery. It's new and I hope you'll join us by adding your own quilt there. Submitting your quilt pics is easily done via an upload screen directly on my website. Click here now if you'd like to submit your own quilt.

Wednesday 15 August 2018

WOW: Sewing Up

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays
Today I've decided to spend my WOW time finishing up my Stash Busting Stars quilt top. I've changed this pattern since releasing it because I wanted to make it bigger and use up even more fabric. Basically I've added sashing between the blocks. I actually had this Moda roll in my stash that matched the existing star blocks so perfectly that I felt I had to use it up. Otherwise I wouldn't have bothered changing a thing, I really love the look of the original pattern. But the whole point is stash busting after all and it was too good an opportunity to miss. This will be a 'useful' quilt and I want it to be versatile, so the bigger the better.

I'm stitching the sashing in between rows. I have a print out of the picture I showed last time I blogged about this quilt - it's sitting there to remind me what order I want to star blocks in. I can't actually remember without my photo 'guide'. Although it's patchy and purposefully mismatched, there is an art to balancing the 'mismatch' and I fiddled around quite a bit with the blocks until they were arranged 'just so'. Anyhow, I'm really pleased to be seriously underway with a WOW today and can't wait to show you more progress as and when I get there.

What's Your WOW?

Friday 10 August 2018

BOM 2018: 'Australis' Art Wall Hanging

Let your fabric fancies take flight with this fabulous art wall hanging. Yes, it's the first of two bonus projects for the wonderful members taking part in the paid BOM 2018 program. Large or small? What size will YOU select? Go to the Members Only Download area to download your new feathered friend full pattern right now!

This pattern is a bonus exclusive, it's not for sale.

Wednesday 8 August 2018

WOW: Morning Glory Progress

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays
Today I'm working on my BOM quilt 'Morning Glory'. As you can see, my design wall is taken up with MG and I'm rather keen right now to get the top completed. It's been hanging around a few weeks and it's about time I pulled it all together. All that mess below my design wall is my next project, waiting in the 'queue'!

Phew, sometimes I look at my creative queues and think I need to slow down and commit to one project at a time and progress in an orderly line. I tried that a few years ago and realized I was just kidding myself. I never do anything in a progressing straight line and my project Must Do's are no exception. Rather than fight my natural inclinations, I'm simply going along with them now. I feel more motivated this way. 

Usually I reserve Wednesdays for WIPs that aren't BOMs as I usually work on BOMs all the time. But right now, I'm so excited about upcoming projects that I feel I need some clear space. Also, I know that if I take down Morning Glory, it will be months before I return it. So, I'm breaking my own rules to get ahead of my own schedule.
I love Wednesdays because they force me to stop, take a look at what I'm doing and 'recap' for this blog post. It's kept me accountable for many years and it helps remind me just how fast a week flies by. Without these WIP stops, I have no idea if I would have achieved as much since I started blogging. It's definitely a habit I want to keep for as long as I'm quilting. 

What's Your WOW?

Friday 3 August 2018

Morning Glory: Making Part 8

This month's making is very similar to last month's Part 7.
You will breeze through the steps..

Prepare all your fabrics according to the Templates. You already know by now, but I like to repeat myself: please make sure that you print and accurately construct your pattern sheet before cutting into any fabric.
 I created the 'blades' first, alternating the fabrics as per the pattern
 Then I started on the quarter circles
turning the top fabric edge and using small dots of basting glue to hold it all together as I layered each shape on top of the other, building 'upwards'. Remember as you work and build your applique, to continue checking it against the pattern sheet to ensure that it isn't 'growing'. I always pin my design into position as I work, just to make sure..
 this is what the back looks like
and this is the gorgeous front

I am loving this quilt more and more with each block I make.. I can't believe we're so close to the finish line now..

BOM 2018, My Biggest Year Ever! 

Morning Glory is my current paid BOM. It's an applique and pieced quilt. 

You can start this BOM today! 

Simply click the quilt image to learn more.

To see some of the breathtaking examples that are taking shape, simply visit my Free BOM Group on Facebook where progress images are being shown all the time. It's a massive inspiration and I warn you, it's addictive!

Wednesday 1 August 2018

WOW: Winter Play

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays
I have a list of things to do that is as long as my arm, but sometimes you've just got to pull out your 'hexi play box' and have a day off. Winters down my way are usually mild affairs but this year has been properly cold and I've been making the most of being indoors rugged up against the rain, howling wind and gloomy outdoors. And of course, I've been designing my socks off!
This is my hexi box. It's a re-purposed beauty lotion gift box and it's the perfect size for me to cart around. In it, I hexi cut and then stash scraps that I have fallen in love with. At the moment I am gathering hexi flowers. When I have a few hundred, I will create a useful  throw about the house quilt. It's a simple piecing project that will come together with lots of pretty scraps leftover from meaningful projects.

This gorgeous peony fabric is a leftover from some bed-linen I made my DD. The women in this family are all fabric mad. And somehow, even though I protest and say I won't or can't, I find that I'm always sewing up some project for my DDs.  Come to think of it, now that I am looking at these peony print hexi flowers, I think I will set these aside to create a European pillow case to match the bedding or maybe a chair cushion .. it seems too nice not to pair it back up with the original project. I will have to check with my DD and let you know what happens. Whatever happens, it's the perfect day for an easy WIP and this is what mine looks like today..
What's Your WOW?

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