Monday, January 17, 2011

My first squiggly

I finished piecing this together last night:

It's the biggest quilt I've made to date and I think I did a pretty good job of it. But now I have to finish it and I've realised that I can't keep putting it off, I'm going to have to learn how to free motion quilt coz I don't think sewing in straight lines will do this quilt justice. I'm all prepared for it too so despite the fact that it was past midnight I had my first go at stippling on one of the placemats that I made for practicing on. And here's how I went...

Front. This is the placemat I liked the least so it was my first guinea pig.

Some detail. A bit choppy when changing direction but I did notice I was getting better as I went. I've learned that I can't rush through and that I have to sew at a certain speed. All the advice I've read to date says to go very, very fast, the faster the better. I found when I did my lines got more jagged and uncontrollable so I think I've found a speed where my hands and feet are on the same page, which from other bits of advice I've read is really all the speed I need.

And the back. I wound up stippling a lot smaller than I thought I would. I found it easier to control small movements so next I'm going to practice a looser stipple.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Where to begin...

2010 went blindingly fast or maybe it just feels that way because the end of the year always feels like such a rush. My 2 little cheeky monkeys are growing so fast. Little Sir is walking now and babbling away trying to talk, and Little Lady is so independant, choosing her own clothes, brushing her own teeth and washing herself at bathtime. "Mummy, I do it!" They're both so clever and observant. I often wonder if I was like this at their age.

Craft-wise the end of 2010 saw me very busy sewing christmas presents. Normally I'd just buy something for my neice and nephew but this year I wanted to do something from the heart that I put love into. I made something they can use and will be able to use for a while to come yet, a craft apron, and something for them to keep, a little bunny rabbit each. I thought I had started making them too early but I'm glad I did because it took me close to a month to make them between a christening, birthday parties and life in general. The craft aprons were the same design as the one I'd made previously for Little Lady here but I made them slightly shorter and changed the way I sewed on the binding to make it look neater. At Little Lady's instructions I used a rainbow striped fabric for my niece and coloured spots on a blue background for my nephew. Of course I had to make her one too which she chose a blue "twinkle star" fabric for. Forgot to take photos tho.

I got the bunny rabbit pattern from an old Homespun magazine (No. 82 Vol 11.3). The pattern looked a lot smaller than I thought it'd be so I enlarged it 150% and made my first trial bunny (on the right) which Little Lady quickly claimed. Confident I knew what I was doing now I enlarged it to 200% and made 4 more, one for each of my monkeys and one each for my niece and nephew.

I've also started the new Emma quilt with the Freckled Whimsy design:

My trusty ironing board has now been retired as a workbench since I rearranged my sewing area. Poor sucker gets no action anymore since I still can't be bothered actually ironing anything not craft related.

No, I don't eat yoghurt while sewing but the container is handy as a tall skinny rubbish bin for threads and such. I remember thinking "I'll have this quilt finished in no time if its anything like sewing these bits together. Too easy". Famous last words coz then I got to this part...

OMG there were SO many little half triangle squares to iron open and trim down! I got about half of them done in one day and then couldn't use my arm for the next 3 days.

Here they are laid out ready for little stickers so I know what to sew to what. I messed up pattern at the bottom left corner but realised after I took this pic so it's fixed now. Haven't started sewing yet. I've been completely obsessed with watching my chrissy present to myself - Fringe seasons 1 & 2. No hurry. I've only got 2 more quilts I want to make before May (girls you know who for - I'm going to be an Aunty again...twice!! So friggen excited!!!!!) Plus the one I'd love to make for Little Lady to replace her quilt on hot nights like tonight. And a dress like the little pink one I made last year for little Nicola who will be 1 soon. And I bought some patterns to make Little Lady some more dresses - yep actually found a pattern I liked! And a dress or two for me. And....
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