Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Outside The Box

Finally I can reveal something I have been working on for the Fat Quarterly e-zine.

Way back a few months ago, Lynne ( Lily's Quilts) put a shout on Instagram for anyone who would like to receive a Fat Quarter bundle of Malka Dubrawsky's latest line of fabric for Moda.  This line is called From Outside In and is just beautiful.  I jumped at the chance to play with such a gorgeous line of fabric and came up with a lap size quilt made from pre cut fat quarters.

 I teamed the gorgeous fabric by Malka with some Quilter's linen to bring some order and I love how it turned out.  I kept the pattern simple because I wanted to showcase as many of the colourful fabrics as I possibly could.
 I quilted this using Aurifil 50wt in a neutral colour to blend with the quilt and add texture mainly.  I used a Serpentine stitch all over the quilt.  It took forever but was so worth it for the beautiful texture it adds.
Finally I used some of the neutral fat quarters to bind the quilt with.  I didn't want to distract anyone from the stunning array of colour and patterns that Malka's fabric creates.

If you want to make this quilt pattern then head over to the Fat Quarterly to get the next issue on precuts.  It is super easy and fun to make!
Collette x

Monday, 28 April 2014

Off Centre Log Cabin tutorial

Here is a tutorial for a quick and easy Log Cabin block.  It is off centre which means you can play around with the layout and look of it.   The lovely ladies in the Hipbee Quilting bee each made a block for me which I can put together into my very own quilt ( once I get some navy sashing fabric).  

It should look something like this when finished!


To make one of these blocks do the following : 



CUT the following from fabric:

A = 2 inch square

B = 2 inch square

C = 2 X 3.5 inch rectangle


D = 2 X 3.5 inch rec


E = 2 X 5 inch rec


F = 2 X 5 inch rec 


G = 2 X 6.5 inch rec


H = 2 X 6.5 inch rec

I = 2 X 8 inch rec


j = 2 X 8 inch rec


K = 2 X 9.5 inch rec


L = 2 X 9.5 inch rec


M = 2 X 11 inch rec


N = 2 X 11 inch rec


O = 2 X 12.5 inch rec  




Quick tip! - I wrote each letter for each strip on the back of them with a Frixion pen. ( N.B. This does iron off).






Sew strips together using a SCANT 1/4" seam allowance in the sequence below.
Press seams to the side or open as you go along.
Finished block size - Approx 12 1/2" square.


These blocks can then be rotated in different directions for a more random quilt layout.  Each block in the layout above has a navy border added to create the floating effect.
Collette x



Saturday, 26 April 2014

A week of stitching bliss

Hello!  Well the kiddos were back at school on Tuesday which meant back to sewing and classes for me!   Oh and how wonderful it was to get some uninterrupted sewing time with Bernadette. (read all about her here).

Not a chore at all.  My classes went super well on Wednesday with the ladies developing so well.  Hopefully next week I will have some pics to share of patchwork tote bags and mini quilts from their fair hands!

After classes I was then free to carry on with some bee block sewing.  I finished Di's blocks a wee while ago but still had the siggy to do.  I think Di will have a stunning quilt when she gets all her blocks in from the Bee a Brit Stingy ladies.

Excuse the creases they were folded up!



The lovely Jill asked us Hipbee bees to make some beach huts inspired blocks for her Summer quilt.  I have made one with one to go.  I still have to embroider a flag pole and am thinking of adding something to the top right hand corner( maybe some sunshine).  Surf's up!

And some more Green Tea and Sweet Beans action has been going on this week too.  I am now onto the Clamshells block and was a little concerned how to ensure they were all nice and straight.  I have developed my own wee way of ensuring these sit as I want them to and I hope to share that with you next week. 


With my classes I have to always be one step ahead with preparing for the next course.  So for our next course we are making a mini wall hanging.  I saw this basket log cabin block on Pinterest but the link to the site was not being found so I could credit the person or follow any instructions.  So I had to work it out for myself.  Now a Log Cabin is pretty straightforward but I then had to work out how to make the reflection block for the other side of the basket.  I got there in the end though and am planning on filling my basket with a whole bunch of colourful yoyos and leaves. 
Watch out for a wee tutorial from me on how to make this basket.
Collette x

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Meet my new friend!







My new to me Bernina 707 Minimatic!  I have longed for a vintage sewing machine for a while now and could finally afford to get one.  I first of all began looking at Singer Featherweights due to their beauty and reputation.  However, the prices are kind of crazy at times due to their scarceness and popularity among quilters.

Of course there was no way I could afford a brand new Bernina.  So after lots of internet research I came across this Bernina machine on a sewing machine repair services facebook page. 

Turns out this little cracker has been reconditioned pretty much - cam gear replaced, bobbin winder rubber and fully serviced too!  The foot pedal is the original for the machine( circa 1968-71) also and there is a spiffing wee extension table too.  AND to top it all off the price was very reasonable in comparison with some of the greedy eBay sellers!

So she came on next day delivery and I love her to pieces.  There is a free online manual for her which clearly showed me how to thread her and what all the levers and switches are for.  Her straight stitch is stunning!  And she purrs like a kitten.  Honestly.

I would never have thought I would have said this but, they really don't make them like this anymore.  Oh, and she is heavy as anything but at least I know she is sturdy.  The plan is to use her for mainly piecing and use my larger, modern machine for the quilting work.

Can you tell I am a bit pleased?
In other news, the kids are currently off on their Easter break so I haven't been running my classes or getting much daytime sewing done.  I have managed another little block for the Green Tea and Sweet Beans pattern.
I fussy cut the flower and like how it has turned out.  This block was super fiddly to say the least as it is hand pieced.  ( I use Aurifil 50wt for hand piecing and applique as it is strong, sleek and beautiful to work with).  The gentle curves were tricky and needed a few pins but the most fiddly part for me was sewing the bottom half ( stem and leaves) to the top flower half!  Anyway I got there and have two more to make! 

I managed to make two bee blocks for the Siblings Together Quilting Bee also.  Hadley sent us this gorgeous sewing themed fabric and had us make St Louis 16 patch blocks.  If you want to find out more about this really worthwhile cause then click here to visit Lily's Quilts for more info.

Speak soon!
Collette xx


Thursday, 3 April 2014

looks can be deceiving!

So this last week I have had a deadline to finish a baby quilt for a lovely customer in the U.S.  It is a larger version of a quilt which is already in my Etsy shop.  Although I have used a different layout of fabric placements with this one.






Quilt stats are -  Churn dash block 6 1/2" unfinished
                           48" x 36" size
                            blue binding

I have also been working on some more blocks for my Green Tea and Sweet Beans quilt.
The background is a feedsack fabric and the little domes are Pam Kitty fabric.

I also made a Card Trick block as a lady in one of my classes wanted to try this out to add to her quilted bag.
I have never made this block before, and guess what?  Now I know why!  One word - triangles!
Doesn't it look so sweet and innocent sitting there are pretty?  All I can say is spray starch and patience of a saint!
It does look great though I have got to admit!
So I have the next few weeks off from my classes due to the Easter break.  Hopefully I will be checking in with you all a little more.
Collette x