Saturday, 28 April 2012

My first quilt

I have been taking advantage of the recent stretch of sunny weather to wash wash wash. After washing the only quilt I actually have in the house (aside from a couple of minis) and drying it on the line, I felt it deserved a little photoshoot because I have never photographed it. This is the first quilt I ever made, just a little over a year ago before I knew about modern quilting. I use it as a throw on my bed. It gets a bit of a hammering because my naughty cat loves to sleep on it after tangling herself up in it chasing imaginary mice.

I still love the fabric in this quilt, the colours are restful and gentle. What I love most about these pictures though are the beautiful leaves of the oak tree. Autumn is a wonderful season.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

The bad, the good and the ugly

The bad
I have made a retro flower using stripes. I tried to avoid it knowing it was going to cause me some headaches but I really wanted to use the fabric for this quilt. I counselled myself to work slowly and spent a lot of time thinking about how I wanted the stripes to look. Just when I thought I was on the home stretch this happened:

The good
Three petals later (yes, I managed to repeat the same mistake twice more), I did get the flower I wanted:

The ugly
I have decided this flower will have to go on the back. It was one of the first ones I made. I was concentrating so hard on the curves and matching seams that it did not occur to me that a large gingham print wasn't going to play nicely:
I have tried to convince myself that this block is ok. But I know that the fabric going this way and that will always annoy me.

If you want to see some great mini quilts, pop over to the AMQG website. Our guild made cot quilts to donate to the Auckland Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit. We decided to make it a friendly 'viewers choice' competition open to all - click here to see the quilts and cast your votes!

Monday, 23 April 2012

Auckland Modern Quilt Guild

The Auckland Modern Quilt Guild has a new website. Jacqui, Karyn, Robyn and I have been beavering away under the watchful eye of my brother who set the site up for us then helped us with our my many, many questions. Pop over and check it out when you have time.

In other news, despite the lovely sunny autumn days we are having, the daphne has started to flower.

Winter is coming. Thank goodness we have an excuse to make quilts.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

More retro flowers

A few more flowers have bloomed. I'm only making 12 blocks instead of the 16 the pattern suggests because I prefer rectangular shaped quilts (and I suspect my patience will be getting rather stretched as I near the end of this). I find myself unpicking quite often - not huge numbers of stitches, which is good, but just where I'm trying to get the edges of the curves to match. I know if I don't, I will spend all my time when it is done wishing I had been fussier.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Zippy Pouch

I'm really enjoying making the retro flowers but it is piecing that can't be rushed. I do the petals in batches.
First pinning,

then  sewing and trimming.

Like many other quilters, I have to amuse myself with other smaller projects as I go so  it doesn't become too tedious. I decided it was time I tackled a zippy pouch. I used this great tutorial and think it all went together quite well (I didn't put the inner pocket in). My little pouch was slumping a little during her photoshoot which the amateur photographer didn't notice at the time. I think I will try a heavier interfacing in the future.

Friday, 13 April 2012

Back in the saddle

Not literally of course (although once upon time when I was young I was a horse rider). After what seems like a long break from my sewing machine I finally had time to start a new project today. I decided I wanted to make the Retro Flowers quilt. I'm not quilting-along with the group  because I seem to be a bit of a disaster at this if the NYB quilt along is anything to go by.

I'm not sure if it is because it has been such a sunny warm Easter, but I had an urge to make something in spring-like colours. I made this selection after spending at least an hour dithering about in the fabric shop this morning.

It took me a long time to grow my first flower. I accidentally only trimmed 3 edges of the first petal I made, and failing to notice it wasn't square meant that I spent ages wondering why my seams were hopelessly un-aligned. Fortunately the following three petals went together much more speedily. Yay.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Intentional this time!

This is the mini-quilt I planned to make for our AMQG challenge. I just procrastinated so long I wasn't sure it would get done. I got the idea from Gwen Marston's Liberated Quilting II. It was fun to make and much quicker than I imagined.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
Linking up over at Lee's!

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Megan's star NICU quilt

I pushed on with my NICU baby quilt yesterday and got it all finished up. The block is called 'Megan's Star' from the book Modern Blocks-99 Quilt Blocks from your favorite designers.

I fiddled around and did some echo quilting.

I found myself laughing at my posture when I noticed I was all kind of slumped down, nose in by the needle as I tried to keep an eye on where I was heading. Obviously my careful reading of Free Motion Machine Quilting with its great section on posture has not had the desired effect. Yet. (I am the eternal optimist).