Monday, October 29, 2012

Candied Hexagon Quilt Progress

I thought I had already blogged about this but alas, no it was just a throw away line on a post a year ago.

I've been slowly working on a Candied Hexagon Quilt, like that from the cover of Australian Quilters Companion Vol 5.2 Issue 18 (2005) by Kerry Dear. It's my go-to project to take to Sit and Sew Evenings with the MMQG. Of course, I don't have a pattern to follow as it's been out of print for years and typical me, I don't like following patterns anyway. The original had around 5 hexie designs, including a solid hexie using a feature fabric but I don't want to use a feature fabric and since it's for Little Lady I wanted to focus more on colour rather than patterns so am using mainly blenders in her favourite 4 colours mixed with randomly patterned bits. So I got all creative and with the help of some hexie drafting paper, doodled until I had around 30 hexie designs, ranging from simple to holy-crap-thats-going-to-be-a-nightmare-to-piece. I've worked out that I need 297 full hexies with 6cm sides (~2 1/3 inches) and 18 half hexies to fill a double bed quilt with a simple outer border. To date I have 65 hexies sewn, starting with some of the simpler designs.

Hex1 hexies
Hex2 hexies - these use same pattern but by changing how I oriented the triangles, I wound up with 2 different looking hexie patterns that appear to twist in both directions. Bonus!

Hex3 hexies

Hex5 hexies - again simply by playing with the colours I've turned one pattern into 3 different hexies.
Hex8 hexies


Thursday, October 25, 2012

Randon Quilt Back

Another WIP, the summer quilts I started back in January for my two monkey got put aside once the weather turned cold and I've recently dug them up again. I've been slowly working on Little Lady's quilt back and its now finished. I had no plans when I began randomly cutting rectangles and squares for the back - I didn't measure anything, just auditioned fabric, keeping in mind that I didn't want the same colour next to itself, and cut it to fit the gap I wanted to fill. Organised random I guess you could say. It started somewhere in the middle and grew from there.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Hexie Windows Update

I haven't worked on this in such a long time but it's been staring at me recently, taunting me to stop procrastinating and just get on with it.

I finished piecing it months ago and am now very slowly filling in the windows. Probably not the most visible colour window to show where I'm currently at but it was the first fabric I chose.

My first window was a bit lop-sided but I think it won't been noticable once all the other windows are in. Note to self for next time: make the hexies bigger - the windows wouldn't look so anemic then!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Catch up

Been ages, hasn't it? I haven't done as much sewing as I'd like but it's been that kind of year. I have many projects 'in progress' including painting Little Lady's toybox with only the final coat of gloss to go on the lid (don't even ask how long it has taken to get that far), making pyjamas and embroidered easter egg bags for both my monkeys, the summer quilts which still need backs (hopefully they'll be finished by next summer), the candied hexagon quilt which I chip away at each time I go to a Sit and Sew Evening for the Melbourne Modern Quilt Guild, my hexagon cathedral window pillow cover (really need to finish this one off), and the crocheted rug which I think still needs a final border.

The only things I've managed to finish are things that were for other people. I've been doing a bit of volunteer sewing work for Little Lady's Kindergarten including designing and completing 6 custom fit double-sided sound deadening table covers for use at the Kinder, and also donating a number of small embroidered easter egg bags that I made specifically for the Easter fundraiser which helped pay for a duck hatching program at the Kinder which all the kids just loved. I've also made a few more easy-release craft aprons for a client similar to this, and my favourite is a wonderful baby quilt and matching block by request from my dear friend, Leah, which I just have to show here.

The front featured a puppy dog, robot and tow truck with trapunto detail and a hand embroidered Name & Birthdate panel.

The robot may be familiar to some as its from Kellie Wulfsohn of Don't Look Now's "Robot Riot" quilt.

I wanted the back to also have some detail and loved the "Modern Pickle Relish" design by Modern Quilt Relish which I adjusted slightly to suit a square quilt shape.

I quilted it with a medium density meandering loop pattern over the coloured sections using a blue variegated rayon thread, and used a tighter meandering loop and star pattern in the white border and white background areas of the applique shapes with a white rayon thread.

The block has lots of textured ribbon tabs around it's borders and I loved the idea of making it more interactive so included a dinosaur with a crinkly spiky spine and a felt kite with ribbon tail for bubs to play with.

It's projects like these that remind me how much I love quilting.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Shelley Doll

Late last year, while flipping through the December issue of Australian Homespun (No. 103 Vol 12.12), Little Lady fell in love with the Shelley Doll designed by Mary-Anne Hogan. So we made her together over the next week or so, and by we I do mean both of us. Little Lady started by picking out all the fabrics, threads and buttons.

Here's headless Shelley. The above pic shows what the magazine Shelley looks like. Little Lady made a few adjustments as you'll see. She loved being so hands on. I actually remodelled Shelley's hands to include thumbs according to Little Lady's instructions - "mummy, she HAS to have proper hands!" and Little Lady sat on my lap at the sewing machine while sewing Shelley's body parts and helped by taking out pins and pressing buttons on my machine. 

Head in place and add a little lippy... I used Jo Sonja's Matte Fluid Acrylics in Carbon Black for her eyes and nose, and Brown Madder for her lips - colours I had on hand from the Bunnies Project.

I cut up an old pair of my jeans for Shelleys pants. All the patches and embellishments were sewn on with embroidery floss and an obvious running stitch. My favourite part is the button and bead detail on the botton of Shelley's jeans.

Little Lady actually sewed all these on herself with me just directing where to stab the button or fabric whenever she wasn't sure.

Not bad for a 3 year old, eh? Yep, a 3 year old!! I'm a very proud mummy.

Pants on. Must protect Shelley's modesty.

The Hair. An indication of things to come when Little Lady gets older? The round buttons at the bottom of her shirt are made of shell.

Shelley's kerchief. I sewed everything this time. Little Lady told me her fingers needed a rest because "is she finished yet? It's taking FOREVER!!"

Her shoes were a real pain as I didn't want to use felt (didn't have any) and I wanted them to be completely washable so no cardboard inserts. I used some template plastic and sandwiched it between 2 pieces of purple homespun, using ladder stitch to sew the fabric pieces together while enclosing the plastic. I tucked the ends of the shoe strap in as I went making her shoes fit pretty snuggly so they won't fall off while she's being carried around.

Little Lady absolutely loves her. I thought I'd have to wait years to begin doing things like this with my baby girl but she surprised me with how patient and careful she was with her sewing. I can't wait for the next time she wants me to make something with her, not just for her.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Summer Quilts

Little Lady is like me, she has to sleep under a doona regardless how hot it is at night. Unfortunately her eczema is flairing up again as a result of being too hot so I'm making a light weight quilt with cotton wadding which will hopefully be much cooler to sleep under. This is where I'm at after a week of cutting and sewing...

Little Lady chose all the fabrics. And since Little Sir is almost ready for a big boy bed, I'm making him one too.

I found the pattern here which was adapted from this Moda Bake Shop pattern and I've adapted it further to make it a double bed size quilt. It's very simple which is perfect as I need to finish these quickly and also the speed with which I'm putting these together is helping reignite my sewing passion. I'm planning on doing a very simple pieced backing with big pieces of plain coloured homespun.

And to show that I have actually finished it, here's some quick shots of Emma's quilt.
It's quilted all over with meandering loops and hearts. Still not sure how or when this will get to little Emma but at least it's finished now.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Medical bag and Tool bag

When I do a big tidy of the kids toys I tend to sort them, not that the kids play with any one category of toys at a time - I've been served tea with toy screwdriver parts in toy saucepans before. So it was more for my benefit than theirs, tho they love bags of any sort, when I made a Medical Bag and a Tool Bag to put all their medical and building tools in.

I used fabric from my stash and some left over Vliesofix and made a simple tote bag to which I had raw edge appliqued a red cross and a hammer onto. I even used a french seam on the bags because I couldn't be bothered zigzagging the edges and this way they can't fray. Only took about an hour to make both and as predicted they're used for carting around toy food and books, not medical instruments or hammers and spanners. But their eyes lit up when they first saw them and they ARE being used so I can't complain.

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