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Really, this should be for a Sunday but…

I have fallen out of the habit of doing Sunday Someplace Else posts.  If I were doing them regularly I would hold this over for that but I just love it so much I had to share.

Recently, DH wrote down a couple of passwords I needed to have. He wanted to just tell me what they were, but they were long and I knew I wasn’t going to remember them as quickly as I needed to so I handed him a random piece of paper off my desk and told him to write them down.  He made me PROMISE to memorize them and destroy the paper. I didn’t.  I tucked it away someplace “safe” – but then I pulled it out cause what I gave him was actually a printed pattern from the internet that I was actually USING.  Anyway, cue panic when I feared I had just put it in the bin (and we burn all paper with names, addresses, etc.  Nothing identifiable goes in the trash. EVER) and that he would need to change the passwords.  I found it, it was all good, but still…

I was eating lunch at my desk, listening to TED talks, and saw this one.  SO interesting to me.  I found it amusing that MONKEY is such a popular password.  Can’t say I ever even entertained the thought of using that, nor ILOVEYOU or 12345678 or (heaven forbid) PASSWORD.

I love, too that there is a WordPress shortcode for embedding the video.  But what really tickled me was that the speaker made a QUILT from her password research.  Fab. Had I the time and the talent I would be tempted to make one for DH – it would, I think, appeal to him.

Isn’t it just amazing?  I covet it in the extreme.  You can read the little blurb in Science magazine here. Can you spot your password?  Are you rethinking changing all your passwords now?

🙂


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Freeform quilt, finally done.

Just AGES ago I started a small quilt.  You can read about the process here.  It’s the top two photos.  I am ashamed to say the other quilts in the post are still unfinished.  The dotty circles one is VERY close to having the quilting done, and the hack and slash QAYG one needs only binding, but I’ve not settled on the fabric.  Since my MIL is here, and she is the quilter, I might as well take advantage of that fact and see what she thinks.

But the Freeform one IS done, and the binding of it, is as close to perfect as I  have ever managed. I have to say the process is fabulous.  Read the book by Rayna Gillman or watch the Interweave video (or do as I did and get both) and you will soon see that it is both fun and easy to do.  You can sort of see the process in a short YouTube video,and  although I can’t say the cinematography is fantastic, it does give you an idea of how it works

Apologies for the early morning, not great light, rushed photos, but DS is due home this evening and there is far too much to do!

freeform

I love the BIG STITCH quilting and the wild colours and the organic way it grew.

2freeform

I won’t say it’s the best quilt ever but it makes me smile and that is always a good thing.

Have a great day.


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A quilt for ME!

Having done enough smaller quilts for LillyBo (although still not delivered them yet! I keep saying I have to make the bags! but can’t set aside all the stuff I am ENJOYING to do it.  I will, I will, soon) I had an idea so I just sort of went with it.  That is my way…

Anyway, I don’t know if this qualifies as a MODERN QUILT – I think it does –  but it has elements of QAYG, free-form piecing (only in that I am beginning with no pattern, making it up as I go along) and I am having a go at machine quilting, albeit using the feed dogs up and the walking foot – free-MOTION quilting I think I am still a way off from.

modernquilt

Basically, I am using some fabric I unearthed, pretty sure it is from some of DDs “ethnic” dolls.  As I’ve said before, row after row of peachy white faces didn’t appeal to her – she wanted Chinese dolls, Afro-Carribean dolls, Asian dolls….. I have NO IDEA why I bought the khaki colour.  I simply cannot think why I would.  Anyway I have a huge chunk of it (maybe destined for a backing at some point when I flirted with quilting in the past?) and it works with the beige and the bright strips, I think.

My method is this:  I am slashing the long strips of fabric, on a 45 degree angle, and inserting the strips of multicoloured fabrics to create the angled lines. I am finding in fiendishly difficult to make the side seams perfectly aligned!  Try tho’ I may, they always seem to be just that little bit off.  I am going slow, taking care of the seam allowance (I used an index card with a 1/4 inch line to position the needle to ensure I am keeping the 1/4 inch seam allowance – read that trick SOMEPLACE and it’s a good one), taking note of the bias nature of the seams, and making sure I am aware of the action of the feed dogs pulling the top fabric at a different rate than the bottom so I am stitching with the right fabric top or bottom. And they still don’t match up perfectly.  Grrr.

The QAYG idea I have adapted to fit my needs.  I am sewing the long strips then doing the quilting so I am dealing with only a small bit of fabric thru the machine at a time.  Maybe you can see the pattern in this shot?  The angles are sort of concentric lines into the middle and the straight bits (where I have two colourful strips close together, going at the same angle) are…straight lines.

modernquilt2

I am loving how it is turning out, but I do wish I could work out so the sides line up perfectly when I insert the strip!  The strips are about 2.5 inches wide, and mostly I have been looking at asterisk quilt blocks for guidance but they tend to end with squaring up the block, which I don’t really want to have to do with the long strips, and lose too much of the width.

Once I have the long strips pieced and quilted, my plan is to join then with long sashing just between the columns, in the QAYG style, using the SAME fabric for the sashing on the back so it LOOKS like one continuous piece of fabric, rather than a contrasting colour – but I may still change my mind on THAT – I joined Craftsy and got a free class on pieced backings when I did so I will watch that and see if making the backing with a pattern to it appeals to me more.

Now, I have to await delivery of 505 quilt basting spray as finding it at a local shop has proved impossible.  So I’ll carry on piecing and then see where this goes.  I am also still working on two different quilts with big-stitch hand-quilting but that is proving difficult to find time for.  I have high hopes for the long trip to skating tomorrow when I know I will have a good 90 minutes of travel time, at least, and provided I am not piercing my fingers with every stitch in the bumpy car, I should make some progress.

Oh, and the Tando clock – be warned!  I def. need to highlight the hands to make them stand out better from a distance, and OMG the TICKING!  It is soooooo LOUD.  Honestly, I can hear it over the TV.  If you like a silent clock this is not the thing for you LOL!


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When quilting and scrapbooking collide…

…and not in the way you are probably thinking.  Not with photos printed on fabric or quilted mini-books, but using scrapbooking tools for quilting.

I had a group of I think 4 fat quarters of this dotty fabric.  I did love the lime, blue and purple ones, less keen on the yellow, but I wanted to make something to try BIG STITCH quilting on.  I love the look. I also wanted to try out something I had seem in a couple of places, most recently in the Freeform quilting book. It’s a technique where you lay your two fabrics on top of each other, right sides up, then cut a curve.  You flip and match the edges to create a curved seam.

This is the quilt top – really, it looks a lot less garish in better light!

dottyquilt

Can you see the wibbly-wobbly edges? I had four of the strips of dotty fabric.  I took one of them, laying a piece of the pale blue over the top, centred.  I cut the curve then swapped over the pieces so they matched and sewed.  But what I USED to cut the curve was my old CM curvy ruler! The plain yellow was a remnant so I had to add in the bumblebee stripe (which I THINK I have enough of to bind it with) and then I used my (still used and useful) CM circle cutter to mark the big round circles for the quilting!

dottyquilt3

I’m using a thick cotton thread (not like matte 6-stranded cross stitch floss, but not shiny like pearle cotton either) to do the hand quilting.  It will take me some time to find my rhythm and get the stitches more regular, but even so I am really liking how it is turning out!

dottyquilt2

I like it even more on the backing fabric (again, remnants, so pieced) although it does show my imperfect stitching better.

dottyquilt4

I’m quilting in a hoop so the wrinkly fabric is not due to bad basting – I think I actually did than fairly competently.

My MIL used to work on something small, to help her get back into the groove and get her stitches uniform, before going back to a major quilting project.  This is my warm-up piece, before I finally, FINALLY, go back to the quilt I started for DS about 5 years ago.  And I am sure that BIG STITCH is the way to go. I think the thick stitches will look fab on the striped denim fabric.

jacks1

I went to my local crop today and picked up a Tando clock kit.  I have a plan.  But that will have to wait for another day…..


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WOYWW 147 – fabric galore.

One thing about a dodgy connection and computer problems is you actually sometimes get a lot more done.  My desk is full of nifty little fabric squares destined for a quilt.

The really interesting thing is that just by arranging the blocks in a certain way it produces some patterns that are totally appropriate for the recipient.  I’ll say no more for now – mums the word LOL! It’s looks quite chaotic in the photo and the colours are a bit off the real ones so it’s better IRL.  My mate finally made it round for lunch (the downside of a dodgy connection – you think someone got your email confirming lunch on Friday and it’s only dinnertime when you finally discover they didn’t just not show up, they never knew they were supposed to! DOH!)  and gave me some welcome input on sashing colours so a quick trip to the fabric store is required.  The method is explained here but as usual I went my own way with it. My previous attempt at a quilt was flawed – While I was determined to use the flannel as the backing it was simply too stretchy and I ended up with some slightly misshapen blocks that made neat intersections impossible.  I’ll have another go a the Fun & Done method, although I think the actual tool would help as much as cotton fabric.  Live and learn, live and learn…

I am homing in on the computer issues.  The internet connectivity seems to be a faulty router – a new one has been ordered.  DH is (or should I say WAS) feeling better so I had high hopes for my upgrade this weekend.  He’s relapsed so now I am not sure. So while my commenting on WOYWW hasn’t been as good as I would like, I am managing to do a reasonable portion each week – it just takes me hours, with regular clearing of my font name cache and a re-boot every so often.  But I wouldn’t miss my travels across Blogland and inspirational desks around the globe.  You shouldn’t either so stop by Julia’s for the linky list.

Happy WOYWW!


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Quilting

I have had a Jelly Roll of MoMo Wonderland hanging around for a looooong time.  I had a plan – I had a pattern from the Moda site that I was keen to try, but then the whole quilting lark went off the boil for me.  I finished DS’s Tee shirt quilt in record time and the thought of tackling a long fiddly project with lots of piecing left me cold.

My sister has been chatting to me about quilting – if you recall my visitor of last week was her mate, and a quilter mainly.  So quilting has been on my mind. Going back to my MoMo jelly roll, the problem was I had cut the strips already in preparation for the planned quilt.  Stupid, really.  I should know better than to cut before I am ready to sew, I’m so fickle.   In speaking to my sis I was pointing her in the direction of some easy to make quilts (mostly because the real quilter is my young niece, who made one for a charity as part of a church group project) and came across, once again, the quilt-as-you-go method.  So what I decided was to sort of reassemble the strips but grouping the similar fabrics – so a variety of the scissors print would form one strip.  I had a few uncut strips and I thought I would mix them in.  I know this is probably a bit ambitious for a QAYG first attempt, but the tee shirt quilt was bigger than this one and I managed that OK.  It’s all straight seams so what the heck?

I aim for it to be less ordered and more chaotic so I plan to sew the strips so they are offset, trimming off at the sides.  So the rows will be neat but the columns not, IYKWIM. I had planned to use flannel for  the batting (wadding) but could I find flannel? Not at the two stores I went to.  So I have some thin poly wadding which I’ll try.  I also got some 505 spray basting.  Anxious to see how that works.

If you fancy some good instruction, check out the Missouri Star Quilting videos on You Tube.  I find them very helpful.