Friday, 8 May 2015

Rose Tea-Party Quilt complete

I finished my Rose Tea-Party Two-by-Two patch quilt yesterday. Sweety-Bird "helped" me with the safety pinning of the quilt sandwich on the weekend. Actually he was being naughty and behaving possessive about the box of safety pins, biting my fingers. Thanks boy...
I used a fun Dear Stella print with clothes pegs for the backing and used a pink Moda rose print for the binding. I stitched-in-the-ditch all the seams for the quilting. The finished quilt is around 52" x 48".

Saturday, 2 May 2015

Unfinished Objects (UFOs)

I see that quilting bloggers from time to time report on their list of UFOs. I decided to make a list so that hopefully it will inspire me to get them finished!

1. Knitted Patchwork Blanket (started when I was around 14 years old, circa 1992). This one will take a while longer to finish since I need to first KNIT the blocks before I can finish assembling it (*sigh*). 
Unfinished Knitted Patchwork Blanket

2. Wedding Ring Quilt (started when I was around 16 years old, circa 1994). This one has been in a half finished state for decades... I think the problem lies in that I lost some of the background blocks (*sheepish grin*) and also it looks a bit 80s to me.
Unfinished Wedding Ring Quilt
3. Kaffe Fassett Chintz Quilt (started in 2011). This quilt top is about 20% pieced. I got bored with it because I was following a pattern exactly from a book, not enough creativity involved. Now its in the back of a cupboard somewhere.
Unfinished Chintz Quilt

4. Curio Hexagon Quilt (started in 2012). This quilt top is 100% finished piecing, but the pieced back panel is slightly too small for the top, and I've run out of Curio fabric, so I ran out of steam for finishing this quilt. I need to find a similar tone fabric to finish off the back and the assemble the quilt. It shouldn't be too hard. I just need to get my butt into gear.
Curio Hexagon Quilt Top
Curio Hexagon Quilt pieced back

5. Zig-Zag Quilt (also started in 2012). This one was started shortly before we moved into our first house. Somewhere during the packing up and moving, the blocks got disordered and some even went missing (oops!). So it is unlikely that this one will get finished without significant re-cutting of triangles and re-planning. Oh dear....
Unfinished Zig-Zag Quilt
6. Kaffe Fassett Postcard Quilt (started in late 2014). This quilt top is about 10% finished. At least it is fun to make because all the blocks and prints are different (except for making precise flying geese, not fun!!!). Hopefully won't take forever to finish.
Postcard quilt centre

Original Postcard Quilt from Kaffe Fassett''s book Quilt Road

7. Flora Kaleidscope quilt (started by my mom in 2014)
My mom finished piecing this quilt top from Moda Flora FQ bundle, and she even managed to finish safety pinning the quilt sandwich just shortly before she became very ill and passed away in June 2014. I plan to machine quilt it myself; I haven't felt much like working on it because it makes me feel a bit sad.
Flora Kaleidoscope Quilt top

My completely finished quilts are shown at the end of the right side panel of my blog. Fortunately, there are more slightly more finishes than UFOs! ;)

Friday, 1 May 2015

Rose Tea-Party quilt top done!

I finished piecing my two-by-two Rose Tea-Party quilt top this morning. It took longer than I anticipated due to some mistakes and unfortunate unpicking, but I persevered :). The finished quilt top is approximately 53" x 47", so its a small quilt. Now I will make a quilt sandwich and get quilting. 

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Two-by-two Rose Tea-party quilt progress

I've been doing some quilting this weekend, haven't done any for a while. This summer has been quite hot, so I have not been much in the mood for sewing, especially since the sewing room gets full sun in the afternoon. I've been working on my two-by-two Rose Tea-Party quilt using left-overs and scraps from several previous projects. 
I've finished laying out the blocks, now I will begin assembling the quilt. The two-by-two square blocks are each made from four 2.5" squares (2 in a warm colour print, 2 in a cool colour print). I've placed the blocks on point, with the cool colour blocks pointing in one direction and the warm colour blocks in the opposite direction. It creates a rhythm, that is fun for the eye to skip over.

When I came to my sewing machine to begin piecing, I found this:
"Someone" had pulled out all of the pins on my pincushion and thrown them on my sewing desk and on the floor. I thought to myself, why would my husband do that? I scanned the room and then this caught my eye:
Ah, so it was little sewing "helper". Sweety-Bird must have been very, very busy during the week. I must remember to unplug the sewing machine cord when I'm finished sewing, otherwise he uses it as a rope to climb up onto the sewing desk. With such a cute little budgie face, who could be angry?
Sweety-Bird has got a buddy now, an olive budgie, called Luc. He used to be my mom's budgie. He is also relatively tame, a few years older than Sweety, but definitely not as adventurous/naughty. He sings sweet trilling budgie songs all day and he is quite gentle. Sweety-Bird speaks English quite well, I will make a video of his ramblings and post it sometime soon.
Sweety-Bird and Luc

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Postcard quilt progress

I've been working on my Postcard Quilt (Designed by Liza Prior Lucy) from Kaffe Fassett's book "Quilt Road". Since many of the original fabrics are no longer being produced, I've been doing substitutions. Its quite tricky, because I want the quilt to have the same feel as their version. 

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Summer holiday arts and crafts

I haven't posted in a while... That's because I haven't been doing much quilting lately. But I have been doing some of other arts and crafts over the past summer months.

I did some painting, which I haven't done for ages. I definitely need to practice more, so please don't laugh too loudly at my attempts. I took photos of the surrounding vineyards for inspiration and managed to finish two landscapes, using different styles and a small vase still life (Please excuse my poor mobile phone photography). I want to paint more loosely, so I will keep on trying.
View of Devon Valley, Stellenbosch painted by Cape Pincushion
Flowers from my garden painted by Cape Pincushion
View of Simonsberg, Stellenbosch painted by Cape Pincushion
I also did quite a bit of dress-making, using quilting cotton fabrics that I bought on sale. I made 4 dresses during the recent holiday. Cotton dresses are perfect for the hot South African summers, I never wear anything with polyester, its just too hot and doesn't breath.

First, a fitted bright red shift dress using Moda scarlet solid fabric and pattern Burda 6920 (View A). It fitted quite snug so I must be careful not to eat too much...

Next I made a flared skirt dress  with a square pleated neck using pretty blue Moda American Jane fabric and pattern New Look 6184 (view C). I wear it with a red belt which compliments it nicely.

Then I made lovely 50's styled dress using pretty lime green Jennifer Paganelli Happy Land Rose fabric using pattern Simplicity 2444 (the sleeveless, collarless version). This one is my favourite, it fits so nicely and is very flattering.

Lastly I made a more challenging Cynthia Rowley dress using an abstract blue and violet Hoffman fabric print and pattern Simplicity 2281 (View A). It is a bit short for me since I'm a tall lady. But it looks modern.

Now I'm back at work, marking dissertations, writing research reports and preparing for lectures (sigh). It was so nice to wake up each morning during the holiday and to paint or sew the whole day. I do love my day job but I love being creative too.

Monday, 8 September 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

My first Kaffe Fassett Quilt: Spring Boston Common
I was recently invited by the very inspiring and extremely skillful quilter Oops-Lah (Vreni) in Singapore to take part in the in Around the World Blog Hop. Please do check out her lovely blog, she is an expert at applique quilting and making beautiful fabric boxes. The blog hop is quite simple: answer a few questions and invite three more people to join in.

1.  What am I working on?

I am currently attempting to make my own version of the fabulous Postcard Quilt (original pictured below) by Liza Lucy Prior from Kaffe Fassett's book "Quilt Road". I have finished the first few rounds of the center of the quilt, still have a long way to go...
Postcard Quilt by Liza Lucy Prior
I am also working on a cheerful two-by-two block quilt (pictured below) made from leftovers from my Tutti-Frutti Granny Square Quilt
Two-by-two Quilt

2.  How does my work differ from other's of its genre?

I love working with Kaffe Fassett's fabric the most; there are endless exciting colours and patterns to choose from, and they look hand-painted. I like my quilt to have a strong underlying structure or pattern (repetition of shapes), so that it has rhythm. I love using as many different prints as possible in a quilt, I think it creates richness of colour and interest. I am strongly influenced by Kaffe Fassett, but I like to use my own colour combinations and also design my own quilt patterns (e.g. my Water Lilies Pinwheel Quilt pictured below).
Water Lilies Pinwheel Quilt

3.  Why do I create what I do?

I love to be creative, and quilting really appeals to me because it involves colour, texture and craftmanship. Also, one ends up with something that is functional (and snuggly). I blog to share my creativity and joy of making quilts. My day job is very logical (soil scientist at a university); so another reason why I find quilting and blogging so enjoyable. I also enjoy other crafts and hobbies such as knitting (see knitted patchwork below), crochet, dress-making, gardening and painting landscapes. I have been knitting and sewing since I was a small child, taught by mom and grandmother. I started quilting in my teens using my mom's scraps from dress-making.
Knitted Patchwork
Unfinished Wedding Ring Quilt started in my teens

4.  How does my creative process work?

I usually start with a quilt block design that excites me (could be from a book, blogs, pinterest or just playing with scraps). Then I proceed to figure our what colour combinations to use to make it pop (e.g. my Summer Star Quilt (pictured below), a happy version of the New Orleans Star quilt by Liza Lucy Prior). 
Summer Star Quilt

I would now like to pass on to some of my favourite fellow bloggers; they will post their blog hop posts on 15 September 2014. Please do visit their inspiring blogs!: 

Smazoochie (Beth) from Texas, USA - She is very creative and I love her use of colour and thrift fabrics.

Mystic Quilter (Maureen) from New Zealand - She has an excellent eye for colour, her quilts are so rich and jewel-like. She is also a Kaffe Fassett fan.

Fleur's Place (Fleurette) from Durban, South Africa she makes beautiful quilts using traditional patterns but with modern fabrics and includes embroidered blocks.