Friday, October 24, 2014

Softies for Mirabel 2013 and 2014

Its that time of the year again. Its time for the Softies for Mirabel appeal. For 2014 I have made four bunnies.  I picked up the pattern at a craft show.  The pattern is by Archie and Moo but I can't seem to find it online.  It is wonderfully simple but cuddly. You have to test them for their cuddle and huggability factor.  I used quilting cotton on the front and flannel on the back. I just had to get stuffing for the bunnies. All the fabrics were from "the stash".  Very satisfying.

I didn't blog my 2013's efforts either. I made four teddies.  These are made from linen. I got this pattern from Craft Schmaft and it is called Mr Ted.  You can get the tutorial here. I had more time in 2013 and was able to work on something with more detail.

I like making softies but only the more simple ones.  Anything too intricate would never get finished. I always have this internal debate with myself over making one elaborate softie versus being able to make more using a simpler pattern. From the above picture you can see which side of the argument wins.

Getting the faces right is a challenge for me. It does not come naturally. Giving them some character and a look that says "let me soothe you troubles" is tricky. This year's pattern removed that challenge.

As I make them I imagine them giving a child some comfort as my son's softies give him. Never underestimate the power of a softie!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Sugar Block Club - August, September and October

I am all caught up now with my Sugar Block Club blocks. From the top is August's block then September's and finally October's.  Gosh this club and the blocks have been great in keeping me sewing and definitely challenging me with the paper piecing.  I wouldn't say I love paper piecing but I am definitely more comfortable with it now then when I started.

We were lucky enough to be able to take a 3 week holiday recently hence the radio silence and catching up on blocks.

I hope everyone is happy and healthy!

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Sugar Block Club - July and other finishes

July is here and so finally is winter.  I am loving the cold weather (well as cold as it gets here which really isn't that cold).  Its also school holidays which has seen an increase in productivity as I am not needing to try to encourage "the procrastinator" to get his homework done. Needless to say its been lovely.

I got the July Sugar Block Club done today.  The corner blocks are paper pieced which I did the worst job ever on.  Reverse sewing was required.  Grrrr. But it got done and I didn't throw it in the corner.

I wanted to make my cousin's daughter a big quilt as the baby one I had made has been very much loved and used.  I bought a couple of layer cakes of Aneela Hoey's range, Hello Petal.  I sewed the squares together randomly.  The lovely Jeannette from Gone Aussie Quilting quilted it using an all over design called Bracelet.  It is backed with an aqua flannel and has cotton batting.

Last for today is the blocks I made for Alison of Little Island Quilting.  She is making quilts for for a children's home in Mexico that looks after former street children in Mexico City.  You can read about what she needs here.  Alison is asking for quilt-as-you-go blocks. I have made 6.  Yes they aren't my most "pretty" blocks but that doesn't matter.  Just go and have a look at Alison's blog at the finished quilts.  Alison has made 48 already! They look fabulous!  I also made a little something for Alison and popped some thread in there.  I am quite sure that it won't go astray.

For those that stop by and read by blog, thank you.
Let's hope a fantastic week lies ahead for all of us.
See you soon!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

The most awesomeness weekend (in my crafty life)

Where to start?  I have had an extremely wonderful couple of days!  Have a look at the photos and then I will tell all!

It all started on Friday night when I went to a trunk show by the beautiful Camille Roskelley. She chatted about her quilts, designing fabric and quilts and graciously answered our questions and requests for photos.  From her comments she has been having a wonderful time here in Australia with her buddy Holly.  Holly did an awesome job of holding up Camille's quilts. Camille's quilts.  What can I say, but in the flesh they are just so much more lovely and beautiful and warm and pretty and charming and just downright wonderful.  The trunk show was held at Kim Bradley Creations shop. Kim did  a marvelous job hosting the trunk show. She also offered attendees a discount if we wished to shop on the night. "She of no self restraint when it comes to fabric" bought some geometrics for the stash.  They are pictured in the last photo. Kim has a wonderful range of fabrics and well worth a visit.

Then after a restless night dreaming up my "quilts to make" list (please tell me that I am not crazy and other people are afflicted by this too) it was off to Quiltsmith for a WHOLE DAY with Camille. I was excited as a kid in a lolly shop!   We were making her Red Letter Day quilt (see first photo). I was not disappointed at all.  Camille is a wonderful teacher.  She made sure she chatted with everyone about their quilts and kept an eye on everyone as we cut, sew, pressed and chatted our way through the day. See awesome! She gave us a wonderful tip for keeping the segments together/oriented the right way while we were piecing the block together.  I must say the blocks came together easily thanks to Camille's pattern.  She told us she loves the maths.  Thank goodness because that's the part I don't enjoy (along with basting).  The course included morning tea and the yummiest salad sandwiches for lunch.  There were 16 of us in the class and it was great size because you got to meet everyone and everyone was friendly and interested in each other's fabrics and progress.  Melinda, the owner of Quiltsmith, has a what I call a large range of fabrics.  I dare you to not to find one fabric you can't leave without buying.  Camille also convinced Melinda of the benefits of being on Instagram.  She is aussiequiltsmith if you want to follow her.  There is also a 25% off sale happening right now too.  Of course there was no way I could pass up that! We must do our bit for the economy and all (yeah I can come up with a lot of ways to justify purchasing fabric).  There is a tab system while the class is on and your fabrics are cut and delivered to you in class. Nice or what?

Now its been probably 7 years or more since I have done a class but I only really forgot to take one thing and that was a square ruler to trim up the half square triangles.  I could use the ruler I took but it wasn't the best tool for the job.  Lucky the lovely Satch sitting next to me had one and graciously shared hers as well as her rotating cutting board.  My aim was to finish one block.  I did that and got half through another.  One lady got 5 made! I was more than happy with my progress.  I posted a picture of the fabrics I am using here. I was channeling the colors of Camille's Swoon quilt.  I am really, really happy with my blocks.  I am hoping to keep the momentum and do one more today (back to kid wrangling and washing duties today).  I asked Camille to pick a colour combo from my fabrics for one of my blocks as a memento of the class.

I missed my steam iron (my 9 patches suffered the most for a lack of steam).  I love a steam iron when I am pressing.  However this was nothing compared to the joy I got from the class. I really can't say enough nice things about the day.

I think I have waffled on enough now.  This is probably one of my longest blog posts ever.  Thanks for hanging in there.

Now I am off to sew my heart out!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Sugar Block Club - June

Well here we are nearly mid way through June.  I always look forward to the first of the month.  Its exciting waiting to get the email and open it to reveal this month's Sugar Block Club pattern.  This month's pattern is straight piecing therefore it got made quicker.  If there is any paper piecing involved I have to work myself up to it and therefore more likely to procrastinate!  I am so thoroughly enjoying the range of blocks we are making.  I wonder what the setting for the blocks will be?

The beautiful box of Michael Miller Spring Couture solids is getting the chop on Saturday. I can't wait.  I am actually going to a class. I will let you know how it goes and then give you a look at how the solids got chopped and sewn.

I hope everyone has a fabulous weekend!