Now that my Scrappy Trip Around The World is almost finished (just waiting on choosing backing and binding – and then quilting that big sucker!), my hands were itching for a new project. Although let’s be real – I’m pretty much always dying to start somehing new! I can’t be the only person with crafting/sewing ADD can I?!
Marcelle Medallion is the newest IG -along (follow #marcellemedallion or #medallionalong on IG for some gorgeous eye-candy!), and I’ve decided to piece mine by hand. I love hand piecing, because I really enjoy the slow progress and feeling like I’m a complete part of the whole quilt. I make each stitch, I tie each thread, I thread each needle.
It’s also a great technique for harder blocks (like the centre star, which requires 4 Y-seams – everyone’s favourite!) because you can go slower and have more control over your sewing, rather than my usual technique of “shoving it through the sewing machine”. But mostly I love hand piecing because it’s letting me piece this quilt during my breaks at work.
I have all my centre quadrants made and now I just need to sew them together and then I will have finished my centre star!
I haven’t bought fabric since August 2012, and for someone who loves sewing that’s a LONG time! Unfortunately for 2012, new fabric just wasn’t really in the budget. Enter Mr Cheese, who came to the rescue with a timely birthday/Christmas present of some lovely Madrona Road that I’d had my eye on for months!
Because I have a nasty combination of no free time and too many unfinished projects, of course all I want to do is start new quilts/softies/pouches/etc! I’ve been wanting to try my hand at a New York Beauty quilt ever since I saw Jeni from In Color Order’s NYB block and tutorial. I love me some foundation piecing, and finicky points and tiny little fabric pieces. (Luckily, because the Dear Jane quilt has 225 of these blocks – and I’m making two of them!)
I only picked a selection of the Madrona Roaxnvd prints, not because I didn’t like the whole line, but because some of them were quite large prints and I didn’t think they’d work very well with the small sections in the NYB (like the donkeys – totally cute, but knowing me I’d end up with an ass’ ass in half of my blocks!)
And a confession here: I’m a bit of an anal planner. (I prefer the term ‘tightly bound’, haha!) I’ve sketched out the quilt and coloured it the best I could with the 7 coloured pencils to my possession, and changed a few things around (like I don’t think I will include the star in the centre of block 6 – middle row, far right – because I want all my centres to be solid tangerine), and you can see the arrows I’ve drawn on to switch the order of blocks around.
I really admire people who can just sit and cut and sew and it all falls into place! I think maybe I’m not free enough in my creativity to do that. And I’m also too stingy to waste my precious fabric, especially when it takes so long to save up for it and get it shipped all the way to Australia!
So I’m not sure whether I love my sketch plan or not. Pink and blue are not really my colours, and yet I love the fabric when it’s stacked all together. I’ll of course be pulling coordinates from my own stash so hopefully I can insert more of ‘me’ into the quilt as I make it.
I got about 5m of the charcoal sketch-style print to use as the background between blocks, but now I’m torn about whether to use that – or try some yarn dyed essex. Although I think part of my indecision might just be because I want an excuse to buy some essex linen!
Can I just pause for a second and say I’m so glad it’s Friday! Because that means tomorrow is the weekend, and I so need it to be the weekend tomorrow. The last couple of weeks have been R O U G H. Between full-time work, roller derby practice (which I didn’t even make it to this week!), gym, housework and pushing through chronic fatigue, I am BEAT! I’m spending tonight chilling with my mama, and then on the weekend I want to have a proper crack at finishing my (ok, mum’s) Scrappy Trip quilt.
If you’re on Instagram I’m sure you’ve heard of the Scrappy Trip Around The World quilt and quiltalong (#scrappytripalong – check out that hashtag to discover how huge this quiltalong grew!)
You’ll have to forgive the photos. These days I snap everything on my phone because then at least it gets done! I do have a camera, but then I have to get it out, take the photo, transfer the photos to my computer, colour edit, crop, resize, watermark, save, upload to Flickr, etc etc… and THEN blog. Instagram just makes it easier (and that means I might actually get a blog post out once a month!) This photo is particularly dodgy though, so I might have to retake it over the weekend if I have time to make myself a design wall! (I had to lock all the animals out of the house just to snap this pic last night, because as soon as I start laying stuff on the kitchen floor the cat (in particular) suddenly wants to run around like a nutter and scatter everything!)
I’m actually (trying to) blog this from the wordpress app on my phone right now so fingers crossed it actually works! My laptop is with Mr Fixit right now, trying to clean off a horrible STD, but I’m excited to get it back so I can show you some more things I’ve been working on lately!
Cross stitch samplers
And I even managed to find room in the budget for a little fabric shopping for a new quilt!
What are you guys up to this weekend? xo
There is something exciting about participating in a swap. The nervousness of making something for someone you (usually) haven’t met before. Will they like it? Is it their taste? And then the excited wait for your own package in the mail.
Recently I participated in the Down Under Doll Quilt Swap (round 3, hosted by the ever-lovely Quilted Tortoise this year) and boy did I get spoilt!
I can’t believe this quilt is really mine! It was made just for me by Cathy of Cabbage Quilts, and I feel very very spoilt. How amazing is it! It’s all of my favourite things in one mini quilt just for me – gorgeous linen, paper piecing, stars, greys and yellows, and mustard yellow binding. Eek!
Usually I hang my minis in my craft room, but this one is going to go in the lounge room so everyone can see it! Thank you so much for this perfect mini quilt, Cathy. I still can’t believe it’s mine!
And the best thing about the DUDQS – meeting fellow crafty Aussies!
August was my month to make two blocks for Essie, and you know I think these are my favourites that I’ve made so far! That wasn’t a surprise to me as Es and I have similar tastes in colours, styles and fabrics, so I didn’t really have to stray far from my comfort zone. Although I quickly realised my stash is very short on brown!
I can’t decide which is my favourite of these two blocks (I keep changing my mind), but I do really want to make my own bear’s paw quilt one day! (If you want to make your own, there is a fantastic tutorial over on Essie’s blog.)
This month’s blocks also let me further indulge my current obsession: scrappy white-on-cream prints. I can’t get enough of this look right now, and I’m desperately scouring patchwork stores for more because I’ve gone through the tiny bit I had squirrelled away and I just want to add this look to Everything right now!
Right now it is ever-so-slowly warming up, although it is still chilly this past week, and I am trying to enjoy the mild days before the full force of summer hits and then we slide back down into a long winter again.
On the go right now:
Mini quilt for DUDQS3 (due out the 8th – oops, I thought the email said the 18th!)
September’s Far Flung Bee blocks
Designing my own cross stitch & stitching up a test version
Finishing up another sweater softie