Tuesday 24 February 2015

SAQA Postcard

Last year I finally joined SAQA (Studio Art Quilters Association) and this year there will be a conference in Portland, Oregon in April.
There will be some Australian representatives going over and a call was made for members to make a small postcard so there can be a display of work from Australians.

I decided to participate and made a postcard with an Australian flavour.
I found a piece of mono-printed fabric that I had printed last year with my Gelli plate. The postcard is supposed to be 4" x 6" and so I cut a 4 x 6 hole in a piece of paper to get  an idea of size and where to place the kangaroo.

After I had fused the kangaroo I did some embroidery to embellish the postcard and add some interest. I used chain stitch and colonial knots in a curved line under the kangaroo and some lazy daisies and colonial knots up in the top right hand corner.

When I had finished the embroidery I fused a piece of felt on the back and did some machine quilting. It didn't take very long.

I trimmed the postcard to 4' x 6" and printed out a label with my name and address for the back, but even with the felt behind the postcard, it was still too flimsy and quilt- like to be called a postcard. I had some very stiff interfacing which I fused to the back between the postcard and my label and the postcard was nice and firm.

I finished off the edges with a brown satin stitch.

Luckily the postcard fitted inside a normal business size envelope and I posted it off to the Australian representative.

Bye for now,

Tuesday 17 February 2015

Sunrise Dilemma

I have started making a crazy quilt block that will depict a sunrise. I looked around for a sunset type of fabric in my stash but I wasn't really happy with any of them. After an unsuccessful painting attempt I decided to go ahead a use the best fabric I could find.

First sunrise fabric

I wasn't really happy and thought that the centre looked a bit heavy and didn't have the delicate, soft look that I was going for.

I was looking through my fabrics for something else and came across and a fabric that was much more suitable, but I had already foundation pieced my block!

I decided to change it and because I didn't want to make a new block, I unpicked the centre stitching and carefully removed the first fabric.

Centre fabric removed
You can just see the fabric that I used as a foundation underneath where I had removed the centre fabric. Then I cut out the new fabric to exactly the size I needed plus a seam allowance.

New sunrise fabric
I did add a little bit of paint to make the sunrise spread a glow a little more. Then I carefully inserted the new fabric and appliqued it in place.

New sunrise centre fabric
No one would know that it wasn't the original fabric, so I was very happy to solve that problem. I think I took the photo above before I had actually done the applique stitching.

Bye for now,

Tuesday 10 February 2015

Crazy Quilting Books

I often get asked what books I use for Crazy Quilting and the truth is that although I have many books I hardly ever use them because I have been Crazy Quilting for over ten years now and I know all the basic stitches without having to look up any books.

I was at my local bookshop over the holidays and I bought a charming little book that I thought might be handy. It is called Stitch Encyclopedia-Embroidery.

It is not a very big book and it doesn't have very detailed instructions for doing the stitches. Sometimes when stitching away I can wonder what I will do next and having this little book near me can inspire the next stitch. I photographed a couple of the pages so you can see the detail in them.

When you have been stitching a while you don't need the really detailed step by step books that show every step of the way.

Another little book I have near me is a book by Dorothy Bond called Crazy Quilt Stitches.

I love the spiral binding so the book can open completely flat. This little book has no instructions, just little pictures to inspire the next stitch. It was published in 1981, long before I had discovered crazy quilting. I don't even know if this book is still available and I managed to get one by accident when someone was giving away her embroidery supplies when she was moving house.

When you have been crazy quilting a while this is all you need to inspire the next stitch sometimes.

I know there are beginners out there who need the really detailed step by step guides and I'll do a review of my favourite books in a later post.

Bye for now,

Tuesday 3 February 2015

Round Robin Blocks Received

Last year I participated in a couple of Round Robins and I received all my blocks back except for my green block and my needle-case. You can see my post from 14th Oct here. Over the Christmas break they were finally returned to me.

Here is what the green block looked like before it was embroidered, it is 6 inches square.

Green base block

Now here is the block with all the beautiful embroidery on it.

Green block complete
The embroidery is beautiful and definitely worth the wait. I particularly loved the dragonfly with his beaded body.

The ribbon flowers were beautiful as well.

I had done the needle case in orange coloured silk because it's a colour I don't usually use and I thought that a small project like this was ideal for trying out different colours. Here is what the base looked like. It's not very big, from memory it is 4 x 6 inches.

Here is the embroidery on the needle case.

Once again the embroidery is lovely and it has been personalised by those couple of embroidered L's. It is not quite finished though; there are still some blank spots. I plan to finish it off and make it into the needle case so I'll post the photos when I've finished it off.

The beauty of Round Robins is that you get to see other people's embroidery up close because everyone's style is slightly different and everyone has their favourite stitches that they do well.

I have not planned to participate in any Round Robins this year because I will be concentrating on getting my crazy quilt finished.

Bye for now,