Thursday, 1 May 2014

Catching up with myself...again!



Lily's Quilts


I thought I'd do a quick catch up post of things I haven't blogged about lately (or at all!) and so have made progress on since you last saw them - prepare yourself for lots (and lots!) of photos.  And very few words.  Well, that's the aim, at least!! *having reached the end of this post I can confirm that I completely failed at this!  No surprise there!

(I feel the need to explain that I haven't done all this in a month (or even two or three!), I've been slowly working on these projects for quite a while, making a little progress here and a little progress there but haven't got round to blogging about them.  Just in case you think I'm some sort of superwoman or something!  I know there are quilters who finish four quilts in a month, two months running, but I'm definitely not one of them!!  I wish I were...)


I've made progress with the hand quilting on my hexy quilt:


Quilting progress

I'm not sure how obvious it is in this photo but I've just got one quadrant left to quilt (upper left) and then the lines in this direction are done.  I've still got two other directions to do (see this photo) but I'm pleased with the progress I've made!


I've recently (yesterday!) finished the quilting on the Drunkard's Path quilt:


DP quilt - quilting finished!

I pretended I was the always wonderful Lynne and quilted a grid.  I marked the lines (3" apart) with a Hera marker and quilted them using Aurifil 2610 (medium grey) on the top and 5006 (aqua) in the bobbin - I've now marked (with a Sharpie) the point on the tension wheel where the tension is spot-on for quilting with Aurifil 50wt and Warm and White wadding as I think it's going to become my usual combination for machine quilting for the foreseeable future!   The quilt top was hand pieced (using Inklingo, an easy and wonderful way of printing pieces directly onto the back of fabric, for the Drunkard's Path units and my usual freezer paper templates for the sashing and cornerstones) and I just need to decide whether to add piping before the binding. I know the binding is going to be yellow and any piping will probably also be yellow but I don't know whether or not to have a double layer at the edge or whether the binding will be enough to lift it.   All opinions welcome!


I've made a (very little) bit of progress with my Christmas Cherry star (based on the Made in Cherry quilt by Sarah Fielke):


Cherry Christmas

One set of points is now joined together and I have the other three big triangles cut, just waiting for me to get back to them.  My friend, B, and I discovered (invented?!!) a really good way of cutting large QST triangles - I'll make a tutorial when I get a moment, if anyone is interested?  My aim is to be hand quilting this quilt by the time the Christmas films are on the telly - I want to be watching 'Miracle on 34th Street' and quilting this quilt, probably while also drinking a cup of tea and enjoying some chocolate!!  I've got a way to go yet as I'm adding rows top and bottom to make it an oblong quilt but I'm hoping that once the giant star is made I can get cracking with the rest of it...I just need to decide exactly what the rest of it will be!



I've also started knitting a shawl:


Summer shawl


I was in my LYS when I spotted some gorgeous crochet cotton (Katia Jaipur) and had to have a couple of balls.  Then I saw this pattern on Ravelry and knew I'd found the perfect project for my yarn!  I've come to a bit of a standstill with this as I need to join in the second ball but I know how I'm going to do it now, I just need to get round to it!


I've finished my sewing machine embroidery:


Sewing machine

I just need to turn it into a cushion, once I've decided on the fabric for a border (or two).

Edited to add: I've had a few enquiries about the pattern for this so have added a photo of the front of the pattern to my Flickr stream here.  Hope that helps you track it down!


These five projects make up my FAL Q2 list:


FAL Q2 2014 - the list


and I'm pleased that I've made progress on two of them since I took the photos for the list - I'm aiming to have the DP quilt and sewing machine cushion finished by the end of the quarter and to have made significant progress on the others.  Don't hold your breath, though!!



I've also made some 'Soy Amado' blocks for Alison:


Soy Amado blocks for Alison
They have a Hallowe'en feel about them now - not what I was intending!!

I used a fat eighth bundle and 75cm of orange to brighten it up (no idea of the shade but it's a Bella solid) and managed to make thirteen blocks with no waste from the bundle (other than what I trimmed off to square up the fabric) and very few leftovers of the orange (those that were left could be easily scrunched in my fist!).  I decided that the best way to go would be to cut all the fabric into 2.5" strips (which made the best use of the fat eighths) and make several blocks of the same/similar design.  That way I made maximum use of the fabric and the energy I had available.  A lovely friend bought the wadding (thanks, P!) and they were quilted using a variegated yellow ('sunrise') YLI machine quilting thread (40wt) on the top and an orange (1154) Aurifil 12wt in the bobbin - I needed to fiddle a little bit with the top tension to get the stitches nesting in the middle (or somewhere close to the middle!) of the wadding but these two different weights of thread played nicely together.  As you can see, one block is made from all the bits I had left after I'd made the other twelve blocks - it looks better than I thought it would!  Alison will be collecting blocks for quite a while yet so please consider making some for her - it's for a wonderful cause.  Visit her blog for more details.


A mystery parcel landed on my door mat a few days ago: I recognised the return address but couldn't for the life of me work out what Yvonne was sending me.  Turns out that she had stitched up the hexies I'd sent her and made me a cushion cover!  I didn't know that she was good at plotting but she really is!!  Here's what she made:


Hexy cushion from Yvonne


Thank you, Yvonne, I love it!  I didn't expect to see these hexies again but it's lovely to have them back and now when I look at them I'm sure I hear a faint Mutley chuckle - all that plotting must have been passed on to them!!


Right, I'm nearly caught up with myself!  Just a photo or two of Archie to go and then I'm done!!  ('At last!', you cry.  ''Very few words' my ar*e', you say.  Well, you didn't really expect me to manage it, did you?!)


In my attempts to show the size of the tiny maple leaves I made for Di (please see my previous post), I took a photo of one alongside Archie.  He wasn't impressed:


Modelling a tiny leaf...
You honestly think I should be okay with this?  Well, I've got news for you.   I'm not.

'Unimpressed' doesn't really cover it!!


And being a pot washer isn't all it's cracked up to be:

Being a pot washer is a tough life...


In fact, sometimes it's so tough that you need to kip partway through a job!


We've also had a visitor who rediscovered why Archie loves that spot in the conservatory so much:


Alfie
It's mine, all mine!!  Oh, don't I look handsome today?  Very distinguished!


That's me done (at long last) and I'm now thoroughly caught up with myself - that feels better!  Well done if you got this far (even if you just flicked through and glanced at the photos!), I hope to be back before this time next month but I'm making no promises!!

Thanks for popping in!

39 comments:

  1. Oh wow to everything but especially the Soy Amado blocks. Thanks very much. Nice to see Archie again :-)

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  2. Wow thqt's lots done! Makes me think a I must get going on my list. That hexie quilt is so so so stunning!

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  3. I frickin love your hexie quilt and I'm a bit smitten with you sewing machine embroidery too! Share the pattern details? Archie obviously just needed a little nap after the challenges of entertaining and having to share his spot!

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  4. Love that sewing machine embroidery, and imagining you doing the Mutley chuckle! xxx

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  5. all of your quilting is looking great! the dogs wonderful as usual. :)

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  6. Great projects! Lots to look at and explore some more. Thanks for sharing.

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  7. You have some beautiful projects there. The hand quilting is coming along great!

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  8. What a lovely catch up. Impressive lot of work! All interesting projects. Would love to see a close up of your hand quilting on the hey quilt, it is beautiful!

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  9. Wow! You've been going hammer and tongs this month chick! Brilliant makes, and donating blocks too! I'll have whatever you're on! Jxo

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  10. Yay ! Some fab projects underway and completed! I love the bright cherry star fabrics

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  11. Congrats on finishing the Drunkards Path. I love your sewing machine stitching and shawl. You've had a great month :)

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  12. Don't know what's cuter - the teeny tiny maple leaf or the completely perturbed look on Archie's face! :-)

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  13. Wow, your projects are all so beautiful. I especially love that hexie quilt, it is going to be finished soon too.

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  14. Fabulous projects Helen. I'm going to investigate inklingo, I love hand piecing but hate transferring the templates onto fabric, so it sounds perfect for me!

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  15. A lot of progress there! I too am smitten by your sewing machine embroidery, is it from a pattern?

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  16. Wow, you have been productive! Your hexie quilt is amazing. Drunkard's path is going to be fab with or without piping - but I like the piping idea as it's the most adventurous option:-)

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  17. No wonder you are sleeping, Archie.....you have been a busy Beaver all month, making beautiful quilty perfection.

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  18. Oh Archie is a sweetie, Fletcher was my pot cleaner too, saved me a job before putting them in the recycling. I promoted Gwen to the job after he died but she's not interested :(

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  19. You are making great progress with your projects! I love how the sewing machine embroidery turned out :) Of course cuteness overload with the pictures of Archie and Alfie, I just want to smooch their faces!! Enjoyed all the pictures and the good read ;) A skinny orange piping with the yellow binding would look great... or if you were me I'd just put the yellow binding on but that's 'cos I'm lazy and at this point in a quilt just want to get finished with it... x

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  20. Wow you have been a busy bee!

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  21. Lovely to see everything that you've been working on! Thanks for sharing!

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  22. Lovely things, you've been busy!

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  23. Such loveliness.... especially that sewing machine embroidery.... would you mind letting me know where you got the pattern... its gorgeous! :)

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  24. What a smashing collection of projects..not a thing I don't love. Especially like the shawl...the embroidery and your Christmas project but that might be the connection to chocolate. Superhuman effort on Soy Amado.x

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  25. What a smashing collection of projects..not a thing I don't love. Especially like the shawl...the embroidery and your Christmas project but that might be the connection to chocolate. Superhuman effort on Soy Amado.x

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  26. Dear Helen,

    For some reason I Always am very pleased when you visit my blog. (can't explain why) and I am also very fond of yours. You are going as fast as the train I am on, these days.
    How do you manage?
    I cannot begin to comprehend the time you must have spent making all these lovely things.

    The pictures are gorgeous, espececially the one of your handsome visitor. How does Archie react when his favourite cushion is taken?

    Nice weekend,

    Brigitte

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  27. Gorgeous work! The hexie quilt is looking amazing and I love your finished machine. Check out Archie with the yoghurt! I've still yet to try that flavour!

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  28. I love all your projects, but Archie always steals the show :)

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  29. You are been very productive Helen! Love them all, especially the shawl

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  30. Oh, my! You get so much done! Love your hexie quilt and, of course, I adore the Drunkard's Path quilt as that's one of my favourite blocks. And the sewing machine embroidery is wonderful - where did you get the pattern? I love it!
    Pats to Archie and friend.

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  31. So much accomplished! Your work is beautiful, the colors of your Hexi quilt are so soft and lovely. The embroidery is another wonder, I love it. Though to be fair, I love it all......
    Archie's wit and adorableness(?) is of course, the scene stealer. I'm hoping he was able to have some of the yoghurt (our dog used to love it) in return for being such an amiable poser......
    I always enjoy your work, and posts tremendously!

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  32. The projects are all so beautiful! The shawl is going to loook lovely. Such cute pics of the dogs!

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  33. Wow! What fabulous makes! Love, love, love that sewing machine embroidery - did you design it yourself?

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  34. I cannot believe how much you have got done, and I will get to see it all in a few days. Woohoo!!!

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  35. Glad to see you've been getting in a goid amount of sewing and knitting.
    Poor Archie. The things he has to put up with ;)

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  36. Wow what are you feeding Archie? He's so big! .. it couldn't be that the maple leaf is so small (tongue planted firmly in cheek)

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  37. Hurray!
    You won the giveaway at "verry kerry berry"
    Lucky you!

    congratulations.

    Brigitte

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  38. gosh, you have had a productive time. love the knitting and the drunkards path is wonderful

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