Sunday, 20 October 2013

Medallion quilt progress

About 1.2 metres/ 47inches square
All the clamshell corners are attached with a narrow border between the chintz panel and the clamshells. 

It has been fun (but challenging) deliberating on the next border. It is so difficult to commit to one or two fabrics so I decided to add lots more an applique border. 

First to draw up some simple templates and cut them from template plastic. 
I am not using my favoured back-basting applique technique this time, for two reasons.  Placement of the applique pieces is not going to be important - it will be fairly random - so I won't be needing to mark the background fabric . Also I want to select parts of the applique fabrics carefully (some fussy cutting) so I think the templates will be useful for auditioning. 

Here is one border strip prepared for applique. Pretty random and lots of it! I didn't mean to make a busy quilt but looks like it might be heading that way very fast ...
Attached lightly with dots of glue

Meanwhile there has been a lot of garden work - the usual Spring trimming and weeding. Outside the last few days it has been very smoky due to the NSW bushfires - not a threat here at the moment but so very sad for some. 

Potting up some Spring cheer. These are called "Patio Sensations" - good ones I hope!

Saturday, 12 October 2013

Star Bouquet is finished

Just to recap from earlier posts... I started this quilt in January this year after seeing these two photos ...

in this quilt history book....

I "needed" another English paper piecing project and loved the way Mary Leggett (the quiltmaker in 1862) had used colours and fussy cutting in these stars. The original was made in silks and must have really glowed.

It has been great fun to make this - especially the challenge of copying the colours and patterns of the fabrics. Mary's quilt was beautifully hand quilted but I have domestic machine quilted mine. I do love how Mary quilted but I wanted my stars to have a 3D quality so avoided quilting on top of them. I deliberated about adding more quilting in the hexagons but decided that soft and puffy was good.
Quilting in the ditch

Now for a rave about the quilting process. Skip this if you are not a mad domestic machine quilter! 
I free motion quilted, in the ditch, around each star. No marking needed - yay. After all the stop/start quilting (necessary but very time consuming) on my Carolina Lily quilt, it was bliss to find I could quilt this one as a series of continuous lines from top to bottom of the quilt - no stop/starts at all. The continuous line followed in and out down one side of a row of stars. Then the next line was in and out down the other side of the row of stars, and so on across the whole quilt. Brilliant - it was finished in a matter of a few hours. I kept the speed reduced so as to avoid wandering out of the ditch - easily done believe me.

Enough yabber ...more pictures. 

Love this backing fabric - have had it "in storage" for a few years waiting for the right project.

On the table outside


Hanging on the washing line
And this is where it is sitting folded for the moment: 

Now for a sad little tale about a Tulip Lasagne. Here it was at the end of winter - springing up nicely. 
It flowered really well, first orange blooms then through reds, pinks and white. But I waited too long to take a 'full-bloom' photo and, after a few days away ( when we had experienced very strong winds), found it  rather bedraggled with lots of blooms gone. So here it is...