Do any of you in the UK buy online for fabric, fibre, crafting supplies etc - have you seen the possible implications on your purchase costs with the planned Royal Mail price changes and restrictions with 'small packets'
What possibly costs you now £2-20 will (if over 8cm deep) potentially cost you £5-70 with the same weight of 100g If you don't agree with it there is an online petition here .......http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/33550 and of course you could try your local MP. It looks like out little window of joy we have in crafting is being stung yet again.....
Afternoon everyone - and a happy new year to you all
Hopefully the cold that we have all been suffering with over the last week, has now gone, and decided to stay back on 2012 - so onward and forward into 2013 ....
Who knows what's around the corner for us all but hopefully I'll have another opportunity to share in a fun / improv Quilting Bee like the Free Bee Group, this coming year and that I get to grips with the projects in hand, as well as those twisting and turning their way through my head. To that end, I bought some cotton today and hope to get some test dyeing done before returning to work on Thursday...
In the meantime enjoy the rest of 2012 and best wishes for 2013.....
I've been very fortunate this Christmas.... DH bought me a Kindle Fire (he loves the idea of getting rid of all the books I read).
Dad made me a yarn swift to suit the 60" long skeins of yarn I make after spinning and transferring onto the niddy noddy - this should make things so much easier when winding up the skeins J bought me a 'superdidoopy' new craft light, complete with magnifier -
and along with all the other delicious goodies of chocolates, beverage and clothing, J's boys bought me some Procion dyes to play with
I've now got:-
100g of black dye - great for a good strong colour
100g of bright orange dye - I'll have to do a little experimenting with this to see what other colours / tones I can create
78g of magenta red dye
25g of scarlet red dye
20g of olive green
Now to fully play with the dyes and be able to mix / create more colours I'll have to invest in some blue and yellow dye powders ..... oh, and yes, lots and lots of cotton fabric.
But I do so need to get back into my sewing room to complete some of those pesky UFO's then I can use the, hopefully, delicious home dyed fabrics to create that quilt based on Angela's necklace......
And, I forgot to mention, I was kindly give a beautiful old 4 shaft Weavemaster loom and stand in early December. So after I get it cleaned up, rust free and fully operational, I'll be having a go at weaving some of my hand spun yarns next year.
Sorry I've been a bit quiet over the last month or two - life has got in the road a bit - though I haven't been that unproductive - no sewing but a bit of spinning and wet felting... I will share some photo's with you soon, those that I can, as some of these creations were Christmas presents..... So in the meantime - everyone, take care and have a great Christmas
This season's quilt for Bloggers Quilt Festival (item 443), is from when I was asked to do a talk / demo at Threave Quilters. Within the group I'm known for being a quilter who has a more improv approach rather than traditional pieced quilts.
It's something that I've unconsciously embraced in recent years, and enjoyed. I seem to have fondness for making up blocks and tweaking them around to form quilts as I go along.
So bearing this in mind I decided to take the simple wavy 'hourglass' block that I used for the Fat Quarterly Aurifil Challenge and extend it into blocks for a quilt. In my stash I had 5 lovely Zen fabrics, purchased a few years ago, and I worked out how to maximise the fabric usage in creating a block. To accompany the Zen fabrics I hand dyed 5 additional FQ's and additional fabric for background sashing and the quilt back.
Here's a guide as to how I cut out the FQ's, and pieced them together.
Then I worked out the format/placement of the blocks.
Once the blocks were made, and they pieced together quite quickly, I sorted out a random placement to ensure that positive and negative blocks using the same fabrics weren't placed beside each other.
Unfortunately there was a bit of stress with the quilting. I had certain ideas for quilting that I'd like to have used, but as I was quilting on a domestic machine and the throat bed wasn't deep enough the lovely looping pattern I'd planned wouldn't work (I couldn't get a lovely smooth loop as I'd have to stop and start along the length of the loop). So after some trial and error, and quite a bit of unpicking I came up with this for each block.
And this is how the finished quilt looks........
So to summarise -
finished quilt measures: approx 60x78"
techniques used: improv, pieced, hand dyed fabrics combined with commercial
quilted by: by self on domestic sewing machine
best categories: bed quilt, home machine quilt
It's now carefully set aside as a present for someone next year....
So if you have something to share, prepare your blog post. Or if you just want to take a quilting journey around the world seeing what other quilters have been up to, or what you might have missed, stop by:-
Many of us look at other quilts, art
quilts, fabrics etc for inspiration, but have you ever considered looking at
other craft mediums for the same inspiration.
On occasion I end up taking a journey
through someone’s Flickr favourites, Etsy favourites or Pinterest boards, because
something they have saved just has that something extra that draws me in.
Now that little extra thing could be
colour, pattern, shape or style an it gets my imagination thinking. So taking a slightly different step from
Lynne’s Friday Flickr Favs, here’s a mosaic of polymer clay pieces that inspire
Ma-belett’s ‘Pearl Mosaic’ –
I can see the pieced spirals with the thin pieced black/white curvy strips and
love that vertical division and the simple pieced section to one side that
could be beautifully enhanced by FMQ’ing
Beadingver ‘African Spirit’ –
The leaf shape are so easy to form in fabric but the shape fillers are so
simple and different here that it opens the possibility to numerous formats of
Page’s Creations ‘The City’ –
this could be a great scrappy quilt project – a pieced background with fabric
scraps positioned over the background and quilted down.Giving an extra dimensional / textural
element to the quilt, which could be enhanced further with hand stitching, (Boo
Ghost Shift’s ‘Tree of Life’ –
this could be a lovely little art quilt.An appliqué tree with some delicious hand dyed fabric for the background
and simple appliqué features added to the background
necklace – this is the piece that really got my creative juices flowing this
week.I see pieced circles of varying
sizes with one of the pattern shown on a bead actually taken and pieced into
the background fabric of the quilt.
E.H.design ‘bracelet’ – this is
a lovely organic piece.There would be
varying hand ombre dyed fabrics pieced for the background with the black ‘vein’
appliquéd over the seam
E.H.design bracelet from the
Scandinavian Collection – lots and lots of simple curved piecing here.Using a minimal colour palette sew curved
pieced strips and trim and curve piece the strips together.
Pips Jewellery Creation ‘sheet
of stropple cane’ - This is so like a stained glass window.Lots of fabric scraps sewn into strips and
pieced together with black fabric.No
keeping to straight lines or equal thicknesses of ‘leadwork’ though, keep it
open and free.
Lasidi ‘brooches’ – a fantastic
range of brooches, that could easily be a modern sampler quilt.I love the brooches that extend beyond the
limits of the square which could extend into a neutral background fabric.
I hope you find inspiration yourself
from these images and that you look a little further a field next time you
want to challenge yourself on your next project. If you've found inspiration from an alternative medium please share with us all.
What is it with crafter's - we have more projects/UFO's/WIP's, whatever you want to call them, slowly and steadily building up around our craft rooms and homes, that we need or want, but still we plan something new. It just takes that one piece or bundle of fabric, never mind some inspirational image and we are off again. Needless to say you can see where I'm going with this - I've found a image that has the creative juices flowing ..... You see I've been mulling over the idea of a quilt that I've made as the new background for my blog header and resorting fonts etc to try and unify everything and create a label, address card etc. I've thought swirls, curves, applique, hand dyed, art poster, leaves, feathers etc - you name it I've looked and considered it, but yesterday when I saw this piece of beautifully crafted jewellery something seemed to click. Now I'm keeping the design inspiration and my quick doodle under wraps at present, but I have been thinking about colour schemes. A simple clean colour palette (all palettes from Design Seeds).
Do I go modern?
or more natural tones
This, if I go with the original doodle design, will be a complicated, long term project and I hope to dye some fabrics to use on it, so I'll have to pick a good colour palette and dye some tester fabrics.
Surprisingly I managed to make some crafting progress this week:- Firstly - I started the week off by being distracted by my Kona holiday hand sewn strips, and, the arrival of the Kona solid fabrics (Pepper and Glacier) from Justine at Simply Solids. Upon opening the package, the fabrics just seemed to whisper constantly in my ear 'play with us' - 'go on see how we will work' - etc, etc, etc. So a few evenings this past week I was ironing, cutting and sewing some of the strips together to make 'sample' blocks. I say sample because, to be honest, this quilt is designed and created each time I lift fabric and sit down at the sewing machine.
I start off with the hand pieced strips, add Glacier fabric slivers to join each strip together, then it's a section of Pepper with Glacier fabric slivers across it horizontally, to complete a block.
I've a few blocks completed and a few where the hand pieced strips are all joined together, but there is plenty still more to do, along with some final decisions on block placement, Pepper strips to join blocks and create three long strips - currently I'm planning three strips to quilt up and join together using the QAYG method, but with me, plans have a habit of being changed as I work..... Secondly - well I've been naughty and complete Dan's Free Bee block for October before starting Nicolette's. Sorry Nicolette. Dan I hope you like this....
Thirdly - the SWD Guild Challenge for this year is almost complete. The quilting is done, I've just to bury the thread ends and sew up the backing fabric hole on the back - I had to add a second backing fabric as the quilting threads on the back were a real mess, so now they are hidden behind a new backing fabric added using the Ricky Timms technique.
And finally - I've finished spinning this fibre. Started back in April and spun nice and fine (to be honest I probably only really spun this fibre, for the most part, each time we had a Guild meeting or demonstration). I need to double check the yarn length when I take it off the niddy noddy.
Each year our Spinners, Weavers and Dyers Guild announce a Challenge theme. From an earlier post you'll see that this years theme / topic is the Arts and Crafts Movement. When the topic was announced earlier I started hunting around for possible inspiration, you can see the post here. There were some aspects regarding the Arts and Crafts Movement, period that I wanted to avoid. Not because I didn't like the designs or designers, eg: Mackintosh, but more because I knew that their designs would be popular and easily reproduced. This decision lead me towards Art Nouveau jewellery and seriously considering dragonfly and butterfly images, floral and stencils, which can be seen in this mosaic that I'd prepared.
However, since returning from holiday I've done quite a bit more surfing and searching and decided to go in a slightly different direction. OK I'm sticking with a floral theme, but it's not quite the clean cut lines of a perfectly symmetrical design or a stencil, it's actually based on a polymer clay pendant/brooch design. Maybe not strictly Arts and Crafts or Art Nouveau, but, there are aspects of the design which hark back to both these movements.
So, having made the decision I was buzzing and eager to get things under way last night. Whilst dinner was cooking last night I rummaged around in the pile of hand dyed fabrics and pulled out some purple, deep rose, grey and rose pink.
This is how it looks after some quick cutting and sewing last night. I've brought it into work today with 2 layers of batting and a layer of backing fabric to baste everything together at lunch today ready for the first bits of quilting.
I got the quilting under way tonight when I got home - more to finish tomorrow night, then I'll have to cut and prepare lost of fabric strips for the appliqué enhancements.