Saturday, 27 September 2014

LE: Working On Vase 1

I'm working on my first vase. I'm thinking of mid pink and dark pink flowers, but I know by now that there's no use planning ahead - I will select whatever works after much auditioning of fabric in the right spots. I'm finding that my 'auditioning' method of colour scheming is working out the best for me - its by far the most successful method and it means I'm not waiting around for fabrics to arrive after I've purchased them online. I did do this at the beginning of my LE journey but I've made a complete U turn on my original colour scheme ideas and now I'm not scheming anything, I'm just letting it happen. I will let whatever fabrics I have guide me for the vases as well. I am planning at this stage to make this vase and its diagonal opposite more pink and the other side more yellow, to have a balance of variety, but I'll see how I go. It's too hard to predict at this stage.

 These fabrics are all very saturated so I've colour tested all my fabrics to be on the safe side (see my blog post on Colour Testing on the sidebar if you don't know how to do this). I don't always colour test - it depends on the fabric (and quilt) in question - but when it comes to LE, I am colour testing EVERYTHING. It's just too much work, time, love and commitment to take silly chances with it. I would be devastated if my LE ever bled out. So I'm not taking any chances and if you don't mind me insisting - either should you.

 I'm pretty much following the pattern colors at this stage, as you can see from my pieces here. I have a concern that these reds and pinks might be too dark for my LE center, so I will try them out and see how I go. Even though I swatched these fabrics on my LE center before I cut them out, I personally find that you cant really "see" if a fabric will work until its cut down to size and in position. I'm going to have a lot of leftover, fusible applique pieces when this quilt is done - but that's OK. I'd rather have more pieces and find the right fit then settle with something that doesn't feel right to me eyes. Of course, I'm making this quilt to please myself, so I'll just keep making and re-making until I'm happy with the result. I am planning, when both my LE's are finished, to make a little coverlet of all my leftover pieces - just for fun. So I don't really mind having all these left overs.
Hmmm, I like it but I'm wondering about the darker red background on this bloom
I have to leave it on my design wall for a few days to really decide
I think I might lighten it up with brighter reds
 I really love these dark, coordinated shady fabrics - but, although they are beautiful, they don't harmonize with the rest of the center. So it will depend on whether I darken the rest to fit in, or change these to something more mid tone. I haven't decided yet. 
 sometimes fabrics really look great, but they don't suit the actual project, I have this problem a lot
a real problem is that I love ALL fabrics, choosing between them is too hard 
I'll keep auditioning and let you know which fabric shines for my Vase 1 options. 
Have you made your Vase 1 flowers? How did you select your fabrics for these blooms? I'd love to know. 

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

WOW: LE: Pepping Up My Crosses

WOW = WIPs On Wednesday

I love the fabric choices for my LE crosses, but I was thinking that the yellow on pink was a bit lost, it needed pepping up. I used the rusty coloured thread, which I just loved and had wanted to use on my polka dotty crosses before I found the pink I finally settled on. So I used it here, to outline the inner cross hole.

This is my "before" shot

this is my "after"
 It's a small difference, but I think it makes a big impact!

What's Your WOW ?

Monday, 22 September 2014

LE: My Flower Leaves

I was thinking of applique from a range of green fabrics for my flower leaves, and although small, I was planning to needle turn each and every small shape into a leaf. I was umming and ahhhing over several greens when I found this fabric - isn't t gorgeous? And luckily, the leaf print here - including the vein impressions are ratio correct for my vases. I am delighted with this unexpected find! Of course, I still have to needle turn tiny pieces, but the fabric is wonderfully detailed and saves my stitching in or drawing the vein details I set my mind on. For some of the pattern pieces I am cutting the smallest leaves directly from the print, and for the larger leaves, I am fussy cutting across the print for the desired effect. I am following the pattern throughout. 

This is a fabric from my stash, so I can't tell you if it's still available. I'm sorry about that as I would have loved to direct you to finding some for yourself - I think its such a simple and elegant solution. But you can recreate this idea with any suitable leaf print fabric. 

I am cutting out the tiny pattern shapes using wash away fusible and then cutting around the leaf shape, enough to turn. The method is the same as my Freezer Paper Applique Method (see my tutorial side bar) - the main and time saving difference is that I don't remove the paper afterwards. It washes away. It's time consuming and fiddly, like so many pieces in this quilt, but definitely worth it. 

Have you made your leaves yet? How did you do it?

Saturday, 20 September 2014

LE: My Berries

They're done! All hand stitched and looking lovely. I'm really pleased with how they turned out and I even like the fabric more now then when I first chose it! It fits in beautifully with my other fabrics. The berry shapes are lovely and round. It feels so good to be ready to begin the flowers. 

I have to say that I am loving my Hungarian Stitch more and more as time goes on too
I'm so happy with how it looks
the yellow dots in the fabric make a tiny, but lively difference
It feels so good to be here and have all this work behind me. I've been thinking about how long each stage is taking me: the berries alone took over 16 hours of dedicated attention. I don't know if it's a good idea to quantify the quilt in time allocation because personally, I think its a bit daunting! 

At over 16 hours, that's about 10 minutes each on average for every single berry. This includes the tracing, cutting out, circle shape pulling, application and hand sewing x 100 odd berries (actually I made 104, but you know, roughly). There are probably faster ways...and possibly slower ways too. 

 How did you make your berries? 

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

WOW: LE Stitching Down the Berries

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays 

I've completed turning my berries, and now it's time to sew them down. I'm really happy with their shape and I have 96 to sew down. This will take me all of today and probably another two or three days too. It's slow going, but I'm going to put the Quilt Show on my computer in my sewing room and enjoy myself, listening in, whilst I work. Its a nice distraction I often use to help me get through the hours.

I've talked about my habit of running my computer for company whilst I work on these long repetitive tasks before. When my cat Mooshy was alive, she would keep me company and have a good inspection of everything I was doing. I must admit, I do miss having my quilting companion cat nearby at times like these.

How do you entertain yourself when performing repetitive tasks?

What's Your WOW ?

Monday, 15 September 2014

Love Entwined Part 16 is Launched

It feel so good to be this close to finishing Love Entwined... this month we make the last applique blocks, the corners for border 4.

As we approach the end, remember how important details are. So relish your last zig zags and flowers for we have reached the end of the applique required to make this quilt. Wow!

This is where we are up to:
the final borders will be added next month in our final installment

See you over in the Bom Group!

‘Love Entwined 1790 Marriage Coverlet’ is a Free 18 Month Historic BOM
Each ‘block’ of the month is released monthly, on the 15th of each month. 
All ‘blocks’ are available for download via my Yahoo BOM Group only

Saturday, 13 September 2014

Embellishing My Vases: 2 of 2

I'm really happy with my poky dotty vases embellished with pink embroidery and stitchery. Here's what I did with my other two vases: I just adore this fabric and think it fits right in with the whole LE feel and theme. I fussy cut it so that the pearl necklace and rose bouquet were center and this is what I chose to embellish - the sweet central rose. 

 I'm just going around the rose with simple stitches to define it

 so simple, but so effective, I've gone around the leaves too

These little details enrich the design with so much interest. 
I really love the idea of seeing something 'new' each time you take another look at the quilt - there's so much going on. 

and now I'm ready to take on my flowers...

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