Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Heart wreath

Heart wreath. My design. Began as a cushion cover and grew to a crib quilt - hence the sawtooth border.

I've challenged myself to create an Advent of Christmas related posts inspired by Pine Ridge Quilter's 25 days of Christmas. Mine will be bits and pieces of quilts, crafts and Christmas related things. Thanks in advance to everyone who has offered to help - I couldn't do 25 posts on my own!

I had to post this one early because tomorrow things will be a little bit up in the air - literally:)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Looking for the heart

I was following a 'blog trail' starting from Wonkyworld to Black Threads a few weeks ago where I came across this book  'Stitchin' and pullin': A Gee's Bend Quilt'. I was struck by these words;

"Look for the heart....when you find the heart your work will leap to life...."

I started piecing together fabrics randomly from my 'use-it-up' box (fittingly the heart fabric was chosen by a friend of my daughter, for a dress last summer, and the quilt is going to her soon-to-be-born sister). 

I randomly machine pieced the fabrics together and once I had a block I placed it on an upterned crib quilt that I already had, for idea of size. I like to think that quilters would have once worked like this, back before rotary cutters, printed patterns and design boards.

Once I had four blocks, I cut strips of the sashing fabric with large dressmakers shears. This was all done by eye - I was surprised at how accurate you can be, with a decent pair of scissors.  There was just enough sashing fabric - the top and bottom borders are pieced - with practically no fabric left over. This quilt just seemed meant to be. The whole quilt went together in about four days - if you have been following this blog then you know that is a real departure for me.

The back is pieced - I didn't have anything large enough - and these were scraps I wanted to use up. The top and back were done in a few hours. I was so enjoying seeing a quilt go together so quickly that I pin basted with safety pins, and quilted freehand lines without a hoop, using perlĂ© 5 thread (no reason - it is just what I had).

I have never done a pieced binding before but I am really happy with how it turned out.

I thought it was fun to photograph these two quilts together. One neat and one free. Next I would like to do something in between.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Double wedding ring

I bought these Double Wedding Ring pieces some months ago on e-bay. I am always attracted to unusual things that no-one else is bidding on - I feel justified purchasing something that may risk ending up as rat fodder in someone's garage, or worse. (Wonder what happened to that little segment missing in the upper corner of the photo?)

I sent a photo to Barbara Brackman after reading this post which mentions that the double wedding ring didn't appear until around 1920. The fabrics in these Wedding Ring pieces seemed earlier than that to me, and definitely different to the typical pastel fabrics of the 1930's when Double Wedding Rings had their heyday.

Today Barbara Brackman has published a new post specifically about the history of Double Wedding Ring quilts.

Keiko Goke's modern rendition of a Double Wedding Ring (featured in Barbara's post) has appeared all over the internet. I can see why - I adore the free pieced sections and wonky corner posts. Reminds me of the wonkiness of my own set of pieces above. Made me wonder if I could turn them into a wonky little wedding ring quilt - or should I just preserve them for posterity, as are?

Friday, November 19, 2010

More autumn colours

A new cushion to brighten up the coming winter (from Tiny Happy) and a new quilt - the second of these quilts....

....mud fun.... 

....and a November sky.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Autumn colours

I don't know if I will ever make a quilt in these colours, but my youngest - brown haired, brown eyed - daughter looks lovely in them.

The top was found in my  local second-hand boutique (no thrift shop bargains in my neighbourhood). The fabric is Liberty. I traced off the pants pattern from a favourite pair of pants. The contrast trim on the inside of the waistband was a last-minute length adjustment. The button was a happy find from the button box.

I actually sewed these pants last winter, but as they turned out a little large, they weren't used much - just as well, because they fit my four-year-old perfectly now.