Friday, April 25, 2014

Catching up!

Hi all,

I have had a pretty productive week or so, not much real work and kids started back at school this week. So I have a few things to share. Actually I think this quilt was finished a week ago I just hadn't taken photos!

It is a Convergence Quilt from the book by Ricky Tims.

I am calling mine "Up the garden path" because I used a garden path panel for one of the corners. I had so much trouble quilting this top, I started quilting it about a year ago and had heaps of thread trouble so I gave up. This time I used good quality thread and still had a lot of breakage, I tried 3 different threads and gave her a good clean, oil and needle change but I still had some breakage so she has gone for some pampering. But I did push on and finish the quilting before she went away.

I figured by the time I got the inside quilted that I had wrecked the quilt so I thought I would try something new for the border. I actually did feathers....Yay! I did a wavy line around the middle of the border with feathers on the inside and straight lines on the outside. I wish the border fabric wasn't so busy so you could see it better. I am so happy with how it turned out! The quilt actually looks okay! Just don't look to closely at the back ;)

On Sunday I decided to make a dress for one of my friends little girls. I picked the fabric, checked what size she wears and got stuck into it! The pattern is Pinny #2 by Make it Perfect.

On Monday all I had left to do was sew on some buttons and button holes. The strap is supposed to the thread through the button holes and tie in a knot to secure it but I decided to use a button for extra security. I also did some extra top stitching just because I love the look and I french seamed the whole dress - I am totally in love with french seams! It means I don't have to use the over locker and they look so neat!

Somewhere in there I also go the checker board border sewn onto the Midnight at the Oasis quilt.

And this morning I put together the first block of the last border. It is 1/8" too small so I will adjust the seam allowance on the rest...only 43 blocks!

I think that is it for now!

Bye, Jess :)


Friday, April 18, 2014

Minkee Monkeys

Hi all,

My local PWS has an Embroidery Club that happens once a month and we make something different each time that the teacher, Cath, designs. This months was so cute that I put in for 2 kits so I could make my boys boys one each. They are probably getting a bit old for this sort of thing but they love them!

The embroidery designs are available on there website, personally I think they are a bargain! And I will definitely be making more! Incidently, I have had a bit of trouble downloading the designs using the setup I talked about in the last post, the designs elements are getting separated somewhere in the process and I can't figure it out...if you know anything about this I would be interested in your ideas?

They are only small snuggle rugs or bunny rugs that roll up. I guess they could be made bigger easily enough. And someone suggested pillows and that is a great idea too.

Anyway, they are getting lots of use. And I have to admit I was scared of sewing minkee but I'm not anymore!

Bye for now, Jess :)


Friday, April 11, 2014

My journey into machine embroidery

Hi all,

A few months ago I was having trouble with my sewing machine, it does this thing were you are sewing along and then take your foot off the peddle and it keeps going...not very nice! It has been an ongoing problem and I thought it had been fixed but it didn't last. At the same time my mum got a new to her embroidery machine and wasn't sure what she would do with her old one, sell it, keep it, etc. So, lucky for me she is letting me use it! And I am learning a new skill - machine embroidery.

For someone new to machine embroidery it is a pretty complicated process. You get your designs from a website or disc. You need a program on your computer to store them and fiddle with them. Then you need to get them over onto your machine. And this process will vary depending one your machine and software.

I am using my ipad and this is what I am doing, because I am cheap lol, is I have found an app called "Airstitch" which is free. I can download designs to it when I buy them from an online shop, such as Urban Threads, who I love btw! It is only a basic app for storing your designs, if I want to fiddle I will need to buy software.

But then I needed to get the designs from the ipad to a USB....and Airstitch recommend this USB called Airstash. So I looked into it and it is a bit of an investment but the possibilities seem almost endless. My stick on steroids (it is bigger than you average USB) arrived this week and I got stuck into trying it out.

I picked a simple design from Urban Threads that I already had in the Airstitch app. And did what I had to do to get it on the stick and plugged it into my machine worked! Yay!

Then I had an embroidery with no purpose...I want to make some lunch bags for a couple of friends so I thought I would try out the pattern first. This pattern can be found here.

It is a good size and went together fairly easily. I'm not really happy with how it goes together at the ends of the zip, so I might try and figure something out for that.

I used regular patchwork fabric and iron on pellon, a layer of insul-bright and lined it with a food grade fabric. It was pretty bulky by the end. For the next ones I will use a thinner pellon.

I took it to embroidery club day yesterday (wait until you see what I made there!) and I used an ice brick and my lunch stayed cold so I think it passed the test.

Bye for now, Jess :)


Saturday, April 5, 2014

Getting back on the horse

Hi all,

Well, getting back on the blogging horse anyway!

It has been ages since I have really been in the blogging groove. I haven't been keeping the blog up to date with what I am working on. I have been posting a lot on Instagram and I think then I don't bother putting it on the blog too. I know everyone can't access Instagram and there are probably some that don't want to so I will try to get back into the groove. I should be finding it a lot easier to blog now that I can do it on the Ipad.

I haven't been keeping my Facebook page up to date either...I have been sharing most things on my personal page.

So what have I been doing lately?

I have been working on a commission quilt for my cousins little girl. I have called the quilt "V is for Violet", I still need to quilt it. I hope to get the wadding next week when I am at the local PWS and will wait until the holidays are over to get to the quilting.

I am slowing getting appliqué blocks done for the Afternoon Delight quilt. These are the last few blocks and I have another one nearly finished, I work on these when we watch a bit of TV after the boys are in bed.

The other major project is the Midnight at the Oasis quilt. I have started working on the 2nd last border which is lots and lots of little squares!

I think I will try to blog every Friday night and see how it works out. Thank you for reading all the way to the end if you made it!

Bye for now, Jess :)