Patchwork & Quilting Feed

So Beautiful

My friend Angela has been quilting her old embroideries and the latest one is quite stunning.  It was a cross stitched embroidery stitched by her late mother-in-law, so it held special memories.  She turned it, from an embroidered table runner

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To a stunning work of art by mounting it on a background and then quilting it.

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This is then an heirloom for future generations.  What a wonderful way of transforming a piece of embroidery.

Some action on the directions

I have been meaning to join a Quilt Group closer to home every since I moved to the island, now I have done it.  I am now a member of "Star of the Sea Quilters."

I am still going to keep going to my other group but it is inevitable that the day will come when I am unable to travel that long distance.  My Neighbour Margaret moved from Victoria to the island and she goes to this group along with another friend, Bev, who has moved to a new home on the mainland nearby.  So, I will not be walking in 'cold' so to speak.  Thank goodness as I would hate to just walk in and say "here I am, I want to join."  Yet that is what I did in the past.  As a teenager I walked into the NSW Embroiderers Guild in Sydney and in my early 20's into the Embroiderers Guild in London and said just that!  Oh the cheek of youth.

Bev is having an exhibition of her work at the School House Gallery, which Margaret is opening, next week which will run for a month.  I'm looking forward to seeing that.

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(Bev used to own the Melanie Magic Patchwork shop and has a serious collection of Japanese fabrics.)  Now that I had got through the formalities of the first meeting next comes the settling in stage.  Although the group meets every week I intend to only go twice a month.  This move is about reducing stress not increasing it.

The book marks.

As I said before, these make nice gifts and should be quick and easy but...  Maybe it was more difficult because I didn't have a pattern and I was making it up as I went along? So, here they are.


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Anyway , I have included a pattern,  Download Book mark Xmas 2022 if you are interested.

Some interesting pointers along the way were:

Keeping the hexis straight.  Those things move around!!! I folded a line down the middle but they just moved on their own.  Luckily I had cut my base fabric a bit bigger so I just cut the edges so the hexis were straight. I bought my 1/2" hexis pre-cut.

Screen Shot 2022-09-29 at 12.17.41 pmIt is important to be consistent with the number of stitches you make along each side of the hexi, I settled on 4 as that looked the best.

Different Interfacings.

I tried 3 different weights.  The one I ended up with I don't even know the name of, it has been in the stash for years.  I think that if I had to buy one today it would be a light weight 'Parlam fusible wadding.'  (You don't want the bookmark to make a big wedge between the pages.)

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The ribbon trim.  I'm going to have to start checking Op shops for ribbons, I had to buy this one as I had non in my stash.

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The other thing I bought was a collection of 2nd hand books to put the bookmarks in before they go in the baskets.  There are lots of good cheap  2nd hand books around. 

Those bookmarks have got me thinking about other variations I could use in that design.

Getting organised

As part of my 'self organisation' I need to have tidy, organised surroundings. 

First problem, my cleaner has gone on holidays and won't return for another 2 weeks.

Solution, start cleaning myself.  (Oh NO!!!)

So I am taking it one room at a time starting with my bedroom.  It takes me nearly a whole day to clean this because I have trouble moving.  I started at the ceiling and worked down.  I am non to stable on ladders but I got the curtains down, washed, dried and up again.  That was a major achievement.

Then when I remade the bed I realised that I need to make a new bed cover.  This one is still serviceable but I only give it a couple more years and it is big, King sized.  Another job to add to the list.

I then got out my 'Accident Quilt' to put on the bed.

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Why do I call it the "accident quilt"?  Well it started life as the backing of another quilt but I unpicked that quilt and put a different backing on it.  As I didn't want to throw it away I quilted it and made it into a quilt top and now I find it is the right size for the king sized bed.  I had collected lots of Australiana fabric prints and had no idea what to do with them all so decided to use them as a backing for a quilt.  Bad idea, it made the quilt too heavy.

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I can see that I will need to make the new bed spread in colours that will compliment this.  And blue just isn't the colour.  I had been using it for the paddlers who visited but Covid restrictions had stopped their visits and they haven't returned.  (I'm not sure if that is good or bad.)  Now to start on the sewing room.  Really, it might be easier to just clean the rest of the house and come back to this.



Prototype 1

I thought that I would put some things into those soft baskets I made and have started with a coaster.  I might have over designed it and I think I will make a few adjustments to the pattern.

I started with the left over fabric that I had made the bags from and used insilbrite as the padded layer between the fabrics.

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I layered up my front, back and wadding, sewed around the shape I had selected and turned it through.  I used a 100 weight thread to sew the opening closed.  That part was straight forward.


Then I wanted a circle in the middle to make a kind of saucer for the mug.  To do this I made a couple of templates for the shapes.

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One I made a bit bigger and after applying visofix to the back of the fabric, cut out the shape.  I used a wadding with an adhesive on one side which was slightly smaller in size. 

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I then sewed a line of gathering stitches around my fabric and put the wadding inside this and pulled it up around the shape.

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After finding the centre of the coaster,

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I was able to press this in position, were it stuck because of the adhesive, and sew around the edge without it moving.

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I was going to use some of the left over quilted fabric to make a mock tea bag but I think this would drive me crazy.

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So It is just going to be used without that piece.

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Now to make the real ones.


New Quilting Book

I put the link for this book into my bookmarks some time ago and forgot about it but I found it again and bought myself an Ebook copy.

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Now I have lost the original link but it was an image of this quilt that got me interested.

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I don't need any more quilts but I would like to explore something like this, hence the purchase of the book.  I have also signed up for the newsletters as there are some really interesting titles there.

She uses a lot of Kaffe Fassett fabrics, who's designs I love but the base cloth they are printed on leave a lot to be desired.  Still, it's all about colour so here goes.  I think that I will start with some of the cards.

THEN I READ that you need to have a group that should meet once a month.  Oh Dear!! But thinking about it I think I have some friends who could be part of this journey and you are only supposed to meet once a month.  That could be a Zoom Meeting!!  Now I just have to convince them that this would be a good idea and I need some lessons is setting up Zoom meetings.

There is finishing and finishing

So, I have finished my 5 soft quilted baskets, although the things to put in them are still to be done.  Each basket is a different quilting design.

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The finishing of each basket took a bit of extra time.  I do not like how many instructions tell you to just machine stitch the opening in the bottom lining closed. 

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It is messy and not a good finish.  I always ladder stitch this opening to close it.

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To do this I use my normal sewing thread and an embroidery needle.

The other thing I like to do is catching the corners of the lining to the main fabric.  It really annoys me if that lining doesn't stay in place.   To do this I use a perle 8 thread and a thicker needle. 

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I start by making a quilter's knot in the end of the thread, some times I add an extra twist of thread on the needle so it will hold.

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I then trim this back.

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I line up my corners, that is the lining and the main fabric,

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and pull the thread through to the corner on the other side until it is firmly in place.

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Just below the fold I then make 2 back stitches.  You have to look for this stitching as it sort of disappears.


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to finish the thread I run my needle between the layers of fabric and cut it close to where I brought my needle out.

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I know it would have been a lot easier just to machine close that opening but taking time to finish a project is really worth the investment of time to give you a more professional finish.



I am working on quilting pieces to make project baskets.  There will be 5 baskets and each will feature a different quilting pattern.

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These are really labour intensive and I started the process at my stitchie weekend up at Toowoomba.  I thought that I would achieve a lot more on these than I have.

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Unreal expectations!

Still working on the dolls.  Have 12 sewn and stuffed and now need to add the faces and ears etc.  These are great little stress busters as I can knit them without thinking and then think when I have to do the finishing.

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I'm not sure how to knit these ears.

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And the pin cushions continue.

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Off for a stitchy weekend.

I am heading up to Toowoomba for a stitchy weekend.  I haven't been away for ages and I am really looking forward to it.  I will bring my car over to the island to pack up my sewing machine and all the other things I need to take.  Then back to the mainland for Friday night ready to hit the road early in the morning.  In that link you can see there are great things to do in Toowomba and I have just realised that next month will be the Carnival of Flowers and I will need to travel up again.

I am going to get nearly 2 days of stitching with no one asking me anything other than stitchy things.  I have a bundle of fabrics all picked out to take with me.

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I want to quilt 5 pieces to make Xmas presents for my teaching friends.  I have been practicing some new geometric patterns and I think that the 5 Projects I have in mind will take up all my time. Screen Shot 2022-08-21 at 8.51.30 am

The fabrics I am practicing on are all old manufacturers samples that I have hung onto for at least 30 years! Time to use them up and not just look at them.

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And, I am going out to breakfast with friends on the Sunday morning, something I haven't done for at least 2 years.

What a great way to mark the beginning of Spring?



Thinking about the Hexies

As I prepare all my hexies for a quilt I will make I keep thinking that I have no real idea of the pattern that I want to make it into.  Now I know I should have thought of that before I started and I did, kind of, but I have forgotten what I had planned and I think I have changed my mind about it anyway. 

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So now I am surfing away trawling to catch ideas of what other people have done.  Sue Briscoe has some great ideas, about all kind of things. on her blog.  There I found a report about the Toyko Quilt show back in 2015 and there is a great slide show you can watch of the quilts.  I would love to make this one, it isn't a hexi but it would have been paper pieced.

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And then there are these.

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It might be better if you just click on this link and be carried away like me.  If you like Sashiko Susan's is the blog where you can find it all.

An old book

I was looking for something else on my computer and found this book that I bought, some time ago.  (It is a digital copy)

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They might be called little pillows but they are pin cushions to me and they are small projects that I can complete quickly.  I am having so little success with my knitting that I need something to boost my confidence.  So, pincushion Number 1.....

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I bought the book on- line from Martingdales.