Tuesday 31 December 2013

"simple" Simon border and a new project

After not posting for many weeks this is my second post in one week.
Well it's that time of year - no work, Christmas rush is over and a few days to relax and catch up on quilting... The house that was cleared of quilting clutter to make room for entertaining is now littered with piles of auditioning fabric.

My Simon quilt top is almost finished. I just have to decide on the fabric to use for the outer first and third borders -"should be simple" she thought?
Here is 'Simon' in the Dutch book - the antique original and the authors' reproduction - showing these borders:
The antique quilt in "Promenade in a Dutch Garden"
Outer three borders on the original antique quilt - a lovely diamond print. Photo from the book.

Outer borders on Petra and An's reproduction - a beautifully coordinated stripe. Photo from the book.
Here is a collage of some fabrics I trialed with my quilt top and strips of pieced border - just auditioning, not stitched yet. I think I would like to keep the colours close to those in the original quilt - cooler/lighter colours - so these are rejects for this project.

The bottom right is my favourite of this lot but still not right...
Then I tried a Dutch chintz floral and a paisley print - I love them both and can't decide. I'm edging towards the paisley print because I love it's simplicity.  But it seems to make sense to use the Dutch chintz on a Dutch chintz repro quilt! Ho hum... not such a simple Simon border after all.

Dutch chintz print

Paisley print
Meanwhile - new project...
In a couple of weeks I am going to Summer School in the NSW Blue Mountains with Rhonda Pearce to make her version of the Ann Randoll quilt/coverlet - so terribly exciting as it is just my cup of tea. What's not to love in an antique British quilt with applique, clamshells and loads of fabric choices! And I have had such fun learning to make clamshells in my Chintz medallion quilt (still in progress). 
Unfortunately I didn't get to see the original quilt when it was on show at the Queensland Art Gallery but at least I have the wonderful book/catalogue they produced ("Quilts 1700-1945").  There are also great pictures in this book below:

Photo from book above

Centre of the quilt - photo from book

Photo from book - wonderful fabrics!
Some possible fabric selections I've made for the centre using the requirements list:

  Lots Some more set aside for scrappy piecing and clamshells - loads of small prints needed.

I've not seen anything but a small colour photo of Rhonda's work on this so am keeping my options open a little regarding fabrics and colours. You can read that to mean I'll be taking half my stash along to class! 

Thought I might review my quilting year - 2013.
A collage of projects that were started and finished this year:

All started and completed in 2013

Then there are the projects part-done this year: 
Baltimore - blocks 14 to 23 made this year, the rest were previous years
Burnt quilt - top finished 2013, still needs to be quilted - some time!

Lucy Boston - Started 2012, finished 2013
Medallion quilt - started 2013, working on it now

Simon - started 2013, working on it now

Double X - just started

Pretty happy with that lot.
But I'm a bit shocked to find there are 5 quilts still in progress ...and I am starting a new one! Such is the quilting life. All the best to you all for much inspiration and fun quilting in 2014!

Sunday 29 December 2013

About time for a post

Hope you have all had yourselves a very merry little Christmas and are now recovering  relaxing? I've had a bit of a posting break due to much 'busyness'. You all know the usual craziness of Xmas preparations and of course the Xmas gatherings - loved it all!  There has also been the excitement of a daughter's Uni graduation and a son moving out of college into his first share house.

And what about quilting??
I never did get those foundation-pieced Xmas cards done (mentioned last post) -  maybe next year...

But I did finish a gift project - a table runner (of my design):

The fabrics are a mixture of shot cottons, linen, plains and homespun. I cut them into squares and made half-square triangles by this method (great tutorial) and then chain pieced them together - very simple construction.

Strings of chain piecing!

Auditioning blocks ready to sew together in rows
I sandwiched the top to a homespun backing with thin pellon for wadding - aiming for it to sit very flat as it is a table topper, but still have the addition of some machine quilting.
Straight line machine quilting with the walking foot
Some more progress on my Dutch quilt 'Simon' - adding corner blocks.

Needleturn applique corner shapes

Here is the top so far: 

And now am working on a surrounding border. I made a lot of paper templates for the diamond and triangle shapes and am constructing it by the EPP method. 

Nothing new to show on my Chintz Medallion at the moment. 

But I have joined a monthly local quilt class - very excited to discover this class being held in a wool shop in town. It's a very open class - work on what you want - so I decided to focus on a machine-pieced project in the class - a wedding gift for a niece's September 2014 wedding. My machine piecing skills need fine tuning (to put it kindly) so this will be good work on under the expert supervision of teacher Ruth van Haeff ! Here are some blocks made so far: 

The pattern I am using is called ' Double X' and it is in Two-color quilts by Nancy J Martin

More news - A big thanks to Meredithe from Pomegranate and Chintz for a lovely giveaway win. Very generous of you Meredithe - I love it!
Sweetly wrapped

Inside was this lovely acrylic template set - to make a 13" block
I can see lots of potential uses for this set . The block looks wonderful in the repro fabrics photographed on the pack. But I think it would make a great two-colour quilt too....

To finish a long post - here's me and my daughter at her graduation. First Class Honours in Law - am so proud of her.

Happy New Year!