Monday, 18 November 2013

Corner blocks done.... and some patchwork Christmas cards

Here is my Chintz medallion quilt so far - with applique borders and corners attached.

For the corner blocks: I wanted to make a feature block that was relatively simple and large enough to anchor the corners. 
The circle shape was chosen to echo the circle in the chintz -and I wanted to use more of the stripe fabric that I had used for the inner narrow border. I made a circle template using this handy circle cutter. 

Here is one of the blocks ready for needle turn applique. The leaf is just a larger version of one in the applique border.
Ready for needleturn applique

Now to get to work and plan the next border.

Christmas cards:
Thought I'd try my hand at making some patchwork cards after I spotted this wonderful little tutorial  at Stitch n Sing blog - so clever. After all - she says it is "easier than it looks"...
It is a very clear tutorial and they are a lot of fun to make but quite time consuming.
following instructions on the ipad
I was so glad to have my new ipad on hand to follow the blog instructions step by step - I definitely do not have a photographic memory! In fact I began to wonder if I had one at all.

I love them but that was a full day's work! So I thought I might try some foundation pieced ones next but this is as far as I have got in the design process...sniff. It's a Xmas tree in case you wondered!
Foundation piecing pattern and fabrics
And this one is Santa. Yep - it will take shape once his nose and eyes are added. 
If I tell you that '1' is his face and '3' is his white beard, and '7' and '8' are just background?? never mind - I'll show you next time... if it works.

Saturday, 9 November 2013

Medallion applique borders and a colour remedy

The applique borders for my Chintz Medallion quilt are coming along.

Two borders with applique finished

Close up - some favourite fabrics

Another border is attached. I'm really happy with the look of the borders and am planning a focal feature in the corners to link them. 

Problem - I now feel that the chintz medallion background is too white. I knew the cream background in the border was not exactly the same shade as the chintz medallion background and that didn't worry me, but when they are in good daylight it really stands out - too much I think. 

Daylight photo

Colour remedy ? time for some tea dyeing. I only want to apply the tea dye to the chintz panel - not the rest of the fabrics - and am not unpicking the borders so will sponge the dye on carefully!

Here is the top laid on the kitchen bench ready to sponge:

And here goes with a bowl of cold tea and a cloth to dab/sponge on the tea:

I applied two lots of tea - leaving it to dry on the bench between each lot. It looked a bit blotchy after the first dry so I repeated the treatment just to even out the colour more. I quite like the touch of 'vintage' given by the uneven colour. 
Here is the result - a  much better match - not so stark: 

There has been progress on my Dutch reproduction quilt 'Simon'. Growing row by row of English paper pieced blocks...
Papers are all removed except in the outer edges

Here is another row ready to be stiched together, and then onto the top:

Remember my friend Angela - making her first quilt under my supervision/tuition? 
Well - she has 9 huge 18" blocks completed - more than half way done to a King Single bed quilt. Looks great!

Angela's Log cabin blocks laid out together
 I've told her she is no longer a student - she has graduated and we are just 'sewing buddies' now. You can see how organised she is with her block strips prepared, labelled and clipped together ready for sewing - she's a natural at this and well and truly 'hooked'!

Here's a glimpse of what I have been doing since last post - lots of catching up with friends and family. This is a Birthday Pavlova (my favourite dessert) made for me every year by my daughter, and chocs from my son - yum -  thank you!