Sunday, January 27, 2013

A Quilt Top Finish!

Bit by bit I am succeeding in finishing off a few ufo's and wips around here. I am thrilled to have now finished my Kim/Keiko Flower Garden Quilt top....

This quilt top has been a delight to make. I began it about 18 months ago and decided to piece my background blocks using various fabrics, some from Keiko Goke, others are Timeless Treasures London Subway and Paris Roadmap as well as Lakehouse Annie's Seed Catalogue and Valorie Wells Dehli. I love the effect the pieced background gives to the quilt.

The pattern is Flower Garden Quilt designed by our incredibly talented Aussie designer Kim McLean. Kims appliques are a joy to work with, all her patterns come with 'to size' patterns (no need to find a photocopier to enlarge) and I love the many curves and points and stems and circles, a joy to applique!

All of the bright applique fabrics here are from the wonderful quilt and fabric designer from Japan, Keiko Goke. They are simply delightful often reminding me of crayon drawings. I love her orange fabric with the pink, red and white hearts and it makes a perfect inner border, set off with the gorgeous 'crayon scribbly' purple fabric. 

I am very happy with how this quilt has turned out. But how will I quilt it? By hand definitely! With perle 8 threads for sure! As for quilting the flowers, as yet I have no idea! I will probably put this down for a couple of months now, to be quilted when the weather has cooled a little. 

Thank you to everyone, both here and on instagram who have encouraged me all the way along with this quilt. I have really appreciated it, you have all helped me to get this quilt top finished! Thank you also to Keiko Goke who spoke about my quilt on her inspirational blog here. What an honour! xo

Sunday, January 20, 2013

A couple of Books and a few Blocks

One of my New Years Resolutions was to get a few quilts/blocks/tops finished before beginning anything new. I am slowly working away at that one. The second resolution was to be a better blogger. So far I am failing that one miserably!!! I will keep on trying though and I thank all of my readers, lurkers and commenters for your patience with me and my slowness.

Today I want to have a little rave about a couple of gorgeous books I have here. The first is from my gorgeous New York friend Victoria Findlay Wolfe (Bumble Beans) who has put together a wonderfully inspiring book showing her amazing quilting style. And this lady does have style!!

There are many things I love in this book, but one thing is how Victoria can take an orphaned block (perhaps the block was to be a part of something else, but didn't end up being used) and then add other blocks and fabrics and come up with a beautiful, improvised quilt!

Victoria has just finished her Santa Kitchen Sink quilt over on her blog, check out her blog post here to be totally inspired by using orphan blocks!!

The other book was a wonderful surprise gift to me for my birthday last year from Michelle (The Quilted Tortoise), who thoroughly spoilt me with Brigitte Giblin's stunning book Feathering the Nest.

Like Victoria's book, Brigitte's is jammed full of inspiration, beautiful photo's and many 'oh I have to make that' quilts!! I especially love this one...

Back in 2010 I had the pleasure to meet Brigitte when I visited Material Obsession for the first time here (MO are in the next State to me about 12 hours drive so I don't get there very often, alas!). Brigitte had a suitcase full of her incredible quilts and I drooled over them during the class she was teaching at the time!

I do love a good quilt book, don't you?

Also happening here is my slow working on my Green Tea and Sweet Beans blocks. Firstly two large (12.5 inches) tulip blocks were done..

and the second one, I do love these blocks and all hand pieced...

Now I am working away at the little propeller blocks, they are only 3.5 inches and so cute!!

Anyone else working on this pattern? Or finished it? I would love to see! xo

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Flowers are Growing

One of my New Year's Resolutions this year has been to finish up a few projects I have had on the go for a while. My Kim McLean Flower Garden quilt was started way back here in September 2011, so it is high time for this to be worked on until finished (the quilt top at least, heehee!). I now have four rows of pretty flowers sewn up, with only one row (four flower blocks) to go....

Kim's gorgeous pattern is 6 rows of flowers and an incredible border, however I decided early that my version is going to be an assault to the eye already with the pieced backgrounds and bright Keiko Goke fabrics so I am only making a smaller version.

I still love the back it is so textural with all those seams and applique stitches!

So now I only have four blocks to go...well three actually, as I finished another one this week....

I love that stripe behind the reverse applique windows in the flower head....

So what else is happening round here? DH and I had a wonderful day and a half at Philip Island with good friends on their folks farm, got some lovely pics on instagram...a farm fence (we had stunning weather)..

Seriously sensational succulents!...

And Kenny, all grown up and very handsome he is too! We first met Kenny as a frisky foal here

Back home, I'm madly sewing up some netting for my plum tree to beat the plum thieves currently stealing our beautiful fruit!! (click on pic to see him closer!).

Now back to work on those applique flowers! xo

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

An Oakshotty Finish!

Hello, I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and New Years? I'm showing my first finish for 2013, though that is cheating really as I had actually finished this little quilt last year, but only got around to taking the photo's today!!

This quilt was made using the gorgeous bundle of Ruby Red Oakshott's that Michael kindly sent. I enjoyed working with them so much I had to go and purchase some more.

It was quilted on my domestic sewing machine using a darning foot. I used corresponding thread colour and 'drew' (stitched) around each outline and then did a smaller repeat inside finishing off with a swirly centre.

The white background fabrics were quilted with a simple straight stitch, zig zagging across each panel.

I was in a little quandary as to which fabric to use for the binding...the orange with purple polka, or that gorgeous fat stripe.

I asked for opinions over on instagram and Pam Kitty Morning came up with the brilliant idea of using both! Great idea and thanks Pam, I love it.

The backing is a lovely raspberry red toile on a white background I've had sitting in my stash for a little while. I do love a good toile.

So that's it. I do hope to get more finishes done early this year, preferably before I begin any new projects!! How about you? Are you beginning something new, or finishing up a few first? xo