Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Monochromatic challenge - January Yellow - Sunlit Valentine

Well I have made some progress on one of my original ideas. The result is a a quilt I am calling Sunlit Valentine. In this quilt I have probably stretched away from the monochromatic theme a bit toooooooooo far. But the background is dominantly yellow even though the Victorian valentines which are appliqued are multicoloured.

I am really interested how others respond to this quilt. The responses so far have varied from "its exquisite" to "my husband would not allow that on our bed" to "bit plain, boring". Seriously though I am thinking of cutting back the large border to make it a single bed quilt rather than a queen........ WHAT DO YOU THINK????????

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Happy Birthday Cats Quilt

This quilt I have just finished for my mother in law's birthday. She loves cats and the central panel is in her favourite colours. I was particularly pleased with my attempt at quilting the panel adding additional details to the picture: more butterflies, cats back leg and flowers.

Friday, 18 February 2011

Wadding cushion insert

Like many other quilters I have lots of left over small pieces of wadding. Today I tried something a bit different for me I made a "pillow slip" out of wadding adding some small bit inside... 1 cushion insert.

My "pillow slip" was made from an off cut of wadding that was

width of cushion plus 2"             by         twice the length of cushion length  + 10 "

Wadding insert before stuffing

finished cushion

Febuary is for finishing - update.

In my progression through my sewing room I came across a pile of blocks that I had put aside to finish as small projects. So over the past few days I have made up 12 items: table toppers, pot holders, heat mats, place mats and a cushion. In the heat mats and pot holders I put an extra layer, a piece of toweling, in between the wadding and the backing to ensure that they are effective heat barriers.

The table mats

Altogether this means that I have finished 21 things in 17 days - only 7 more to go and I will have finished 28 items in 28 days.....

Friday, 11 February 2011

Janome 1600P - thread breaking issues when quilting

I have a Janome 1600P which I use on a Happy Jack frame for quilting. Ever since I acquired the machine I have had issues with the thread breaking, and missing stitches particularly when moving in a diagonal backwards direction. Up to now I have thought that this was a problem with my technique only. Such things as regularly changing needles, oiling, cleaning, and particular care not to go too fast in that direction have improved the situation. Sewing more left to right rather than right to left on the frame.

Well the reason for this post is ...... I just got some some new bobbins. I am not sure that they are actually Janome bobbins - but they were sold to fit this machine. The difference is extraordinary. A whole quilt with no broken threads.... no skipped stitches ....  The machine is quieter. I would not have ever considered that the bobbins were the issue as I had 11 genuine bobbins which I got with the machine and the problem existed with all of them,............

Apart from this I am very happy with the machine -  I have quilted over 120 quilts with it in the past 3 years.

Answers to questions (addition to original post)

I purchased the bobbins from Sharp sewing supplies PO Box 41721 Los Angeles CA 90041 USA.
Toll free phone: 800-2252983
Ebay shop:
They are the aluminum bobbins... I am in no way connected with this store other than a happy customer.

A friend of mine who has more sewing machine mechanic knowledge than me has pointed out 3 things: these bobbins are lighter than the original bobbins and minutely smaller both in width and thickness.

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Progress report 2 - 50 quilts from stash challenge.

I have been concentrating on quilts and finishing them so I am up to 27 quilts from stash. Apart from the joy of having the finished product to give away ..... there is also the possibility of easy movement in my sewing room and none of the storage boxes are overflowing in cascades onto the floor. Most are now empty enough to put a lid on - if I wanted to.  However the piles of finished quilts in other rooms, which awaiting collection or postage is becoming a problem!!!!

The one area of the no buy that I have hit a problem with is my membership of the monochromatic challenge. I have so little yellow fabric that it has just not been possible to complete this without buying some.Of course this means that these quilts will not count in the 50 quilt challenge.

So here is number 27 which is also finished quilt number 150 in my personal data base (lifelong) - I have called it Rust Dreaming -

Quilts for Carisbrook

Wilma is coordinating a project of making quilts for Carisbrook - one of the Towns in Victoria hit by the flooding - every house was affected. As usual the quilting world is being wonderful and responding to the call for those in need. More information is on the special blog "Quilts for Carisbrook"

Here are 2 that I have assembled and quilted from blocks donated by the local Red Cross Branch.

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Stashbusting quilting thread

My Husband named this quilt "Four season of John expensive" because to the John Deer Tractors on on it

This one just has a variety of green blocks - but I names it "wolf" for the center one.. 

The reason I have titled this stash busting quilting thread is that I have a considerable number of spools of quilting thread where i am not sure how much is left and therefore they were just sitting in the shelf because I did not want to use them in case i ran out of the color half way through the quilt. In  these quilts I collected up a variety of cream and tan thread and would enough bobbins for a quilt. Each time I changed bobbins I chose a different shade - hoping it would not be too obvious and if noticeable it would look deliberate. The result is so unnoticeable it is not even worth trying to put up photos of the back to show the changing effect. ... So there are going to be more spools that bite the dust.

Long length of strong blue stripe

I was given a long length of strong blue stripe and wondered how to use it. I found it was rather overwhelming of other fabrics. so i came up with using with navy and white with 2 different orientations of the stripe. The back is of course blue stripe!!!! Then I hit the challenge of how to quilt it - I made it before getting my mid arm and had not realized that 8" blocks would be hard to quilt with a 9" throat space.

The quilting problems were solved by using words in the plain blocks and following the stripes in the other blocks Because I could not go all the way up and down the vertically striped blocks I crossed the blue pars in an uneven fashion which i found created interest without a strong horizontal line.

Two "rescued" grand mother 's garden blocks.

When the local Red cross group had to sell their building much of their materials had to be disposed of. Among the bits and pieces that came my way were 2 grandmother flower garden blocks. I decided to make them into 2 quilts as they did not blend well together color wise. In each case I added a series of simple boarders in an effort to keep the focus on the pieced block. On the pinker one I chose a swirling quilting pattern as the toning materials that i had were all highly patterned.

This one I made smaller as i had less toning fabrics and those I had were mainly plains. For this reason I chose to quilt it with flowers to fit the theme of the central block.

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Febuary is for finishing

I have decided that I have too many tops sitting in my "top box' and so I have decided to focus on finishing the pile.I actually began the process in January when the first lot of flooding hit Queensland  since then there has been flooding in Victoria as well and now the cyclone has hit Queensland. However before I could focus on the flooding I felt that I should quilt the finished tops that were promised to other people. So that is where I began.

The third quilt down is an experiment in using 5 cushion panels in a 9 patch block set to make a quilt with the focus of horses.