Bags, Bowls and a Cushion!

It’s been a while since I blogged as I’ve been very busy enjoying life to the full. I’ve been sewing, but can’t show my work as they’re gifts and the recipients haven’t seen them yet.

All of my Patchwork and Quilting Pals have been very busy making bags. Some of us are using them to carry equipment to club, others have made them as gifts for friends or expected grandchildren.  These bags are designed with lots of pockets on the outside and a large open interior. Angela showed us how to make them and we have all found them very useful.

As I tend to tip things up in the car I used Velcro to secure one long pocket, so I could keep my rulers protected in one place. I added a zip to the other pocket, which means my clover mini iron will also be safe. Then I decided I needed to attach extra pockets on the inside as I cart along lots of paraphernalia and wanted to try to become a bit more organised.  It has made clearing up easier, as everything has its own place and I can see what is missing.

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Angela also helped us make beautiful fabric bowls. They were a bit fiddly, but worth the effort. I have popped mine away as its in Christmas fabric and the first thing I‘ve made for this year. I always have good intentions of making one Xmas thing a month, but it never materialises

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Look at the inside of our Easter and Christmas bowls. They are all reversible so can be turned inside out revealing the reverse fabric.

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A while ago I was shopping with Farris when he spotted this ‘nee-nor’ fabric as he calls it. It was on top of a bolt of his digger fabric and he kept saying “Digger Granny, nee-nor Granny”.  Well I couldn’t resist and made him a cushion for his second birthday. How time flies!

I covered the back zip with a flap made out of black and white fabric. Its the same fabric I used on his cot quilt.

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Well I hope you all have a happy Easter. Enjoy yourselves, happy sewing!    Linda

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Some finishes!

At long last I can reveal some finishes!

Loud drumroll please… I have actually finished the playmat for my grandson Farris and given it to him a few days before his first birthday. I made it, in more ways than one!

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I’ve been adventurous and tried some free motion quilting around some of the countries where I needed extra quilting to ensure the wadding doesn’t move when the mat is washed.  It was fun to free motion quilt on something a bit bigger than a mug rug.

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Then I finished my table runner for Easter. I don’t usually make things in such light colours for my dining room and it made a real change to work with some of my favourite colours.

IMG_0642When I originally put my Easter table runner on the dining room table I felt it needed something in the middle. Unlike at Christmas I didn’t want to put a candle there, so have displayed some of the clay work my daughter made many years ago.  It brings back happy memories looking at it and it’s great to have it out again.

Today at my quilting class I enjoyed sewing the bag my sister in law and brother in law gave me in kit form for Christmas. The bottom of the bag is quilted and it is finished with a turn down cuff at the top.

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We were all intrigued to see how the pattern went together as it was quite different to any we had used before. I am really pleased with it and love all the pockets inside. It seems quite sturdy to carry my things around in.

I always like presses like this where you can learn new techniques and make some thing useful.

IMG_0645Well that’s my total sewing pile for most of March and the beginning of April.  I need to go back and work on my individual quilt blocks again now.

Keep sewing and relaxing!

Linda

 

One year on…

Braintree Quilters has been running for one year now! Yippee!!! Over the year we have welcomed ladies who had never quilted before, so our numbers swelled!

At our initial meeting we agreed to attempt a group quilt after our first year. As we meet in St Peter’s Church Hall we decided to challenge ourselves to make a quilt that the church could raffle at their summer fair. We really hope it will help generate more cash for their church projects.

Several of us met up just after Christmas to choose a fabric that would be the main one running through the design.  We chose the dark green marble fabric, hoping it would appeal to both men and women.

Everyone who attended our meeting today set to work with enthusiasm making two “Cross Roads to Jericho” blocks. Grace chose the biblical block, as the most suitable one for all our members to sew. To create each block Sheila gave everyone five of the 2 ½ inch green marbled fabric squares. Then we used our stash scraps to make the arrows. Each finished block is 9 inches square.

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As we finished our blocks we placed them on the tables and watched the design grow. It was exciting to see what it looked like. Then we started moving the blocks around to see different effects. Look how your eye follows the green squares up and down, side to side, all in lines!  Wow, it will look good when it is pieced together. We have four more blocks to make before we can begin to think about adding the borders.

I hope you like the beginnings of our charity quilt. If you have any ideas how to ensure lots of local people see our quilt, which would help raise even more money do let me know!

Happy quilting!    Linda

A long time….

Its been a long time since I last blogged.  I’ve been sew….. busy making pressies for folk and testing a handbag pattern!

I can now show you my latest creations…

The cushions are very bright as Kate asked for these colours. I used my Sizzix applecore die to cut this one out.

IMG_0898 This cushion is made out of strips and I added some lovely heart shaped buttons on the front.IMG_0899 And… as Kate was travelling  I made her some square mug rugs to take with her to remind her of home.  Again I cut them out with my Sizzix using the half square triangle dies. IMG_0900 IMG_0901

I was lucky to be able to test a pattern for the Lombard Street Bag  for Chris of chriswdesigns.com.

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This was great fun and I can recommend her patterns. Here are some pictures of my bag which featured on her website.  The bag has multiple pockets on the outside, and a great iPad pouch on the back, just right for travelling with.

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It has a zip closure to keep all my bits secure.

Well that’s all for today, I’ll continue with my quilting and hope to finish my latest quilt quite soon.

Have a good day!  Linda

Braintree Quilters

Another busy week for us all!

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Some club members were making a carry tote for their cutting mats and rulers.  I am very proud that they have chosen to use one of my own knowhowtosew.com patterns. Members will all be able to personalise their totes to ensure they fit their own rulers and cutting mats.

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Launa is quilting the outside of her tote.  It will be a lovely bright tote, as she is using some of the cotton fabric her Mum bought in India.

Linda and Diane were in great discussion about Linda’s quilt top, which is absolutely beautiful. During the day Linda busily pinned the wadding and backing on.

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Grace is hooked on attic windows! She has chosen to use the fabric she bought in Australia and New Zealand.  There will be lots more photos in the weeks to come as she works on it.

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Pat, one of our newest members, is busy hand sewing her cushion top.

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We have enough members now to start a waiting list, which is very good for a club that is only four and a half months old!  Friendships are being formed as we sit, sew, quilt, hand stitch and chat!

Happy sewing and quilting to you all!

Braintree Quilters

This week we all worked on our own projects.  Launa finished her cushion. She finished the back neatly in an envelope style. This is the first time Launa has ever quilted, she worked carefully and her cushion is very good.

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 She also finished her cathedral windows pin cushion and bought it along to show us all.

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Sheila bought in a picture of the seaside.  She made a hanging sleeve to go on the back.

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Linda made some kaleidoscope circles. They will be backed and made into table mats.

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In June our meetings will change to the second Wednesday of every month and the fourth Monday.  If you would like to join us for both days or just one each month, please contact us by email using the contact page.  Those who are beginners, or experienced at quilting, are very welcome.

CQJP 2013

CQJP 2013 January's Block

CQJP 2013 January’s Block

I have just finished my January CQJP challenge, yipee!  For those of you who don’t know CQJP stands for the “Crazy Quilt Journal Project” which is year long project promoting crazy quilting with embroidery.

Lots of decisions had to be made before I started this, what size, what colours, did I want a theme???   The suggestions were to make lap quilts or books with the twelve blocks. Well I decided on a lap quilt using blocks measuring 12″ square that tell the story of my year.  I started by labelling the block with January. As my life is changing I have added the words “Life is like a book, full of chapters” and hope to add a meaningful phrase each month. Please leave me a reply with your ideas that I could use.

My fabrics are ones that I have used in the last year and remind me of events or people: can you see the little ducks?  This is a slither of fabric left from the baby quilt I have just made for my grandchild expected in March.  The grey check gingham fabric I brought in Prague just before Christmas and the black swirly fabric from a stop at Southport when I was travelling between Blackpool and Liverpool. I think I will use these two fabrics in every block to help coordinate them.

My hand embroidery is fly stitch using a thick metallic thread.  Does anyone else find them difficult to use, when the metallic part splits as you sew?

Enjoy your day, sew and forget your troubles!