Sunday, 29 March 2015

Sugar Loaf Pillow

I've been back from Quiltcon for just over a month and while I've been quiet here on the blog, I've been busy catching up on my sewing commitments. One of those commitments was the Great Pillow Fight Swap. I had an idea for a little paper pieced triangle block but I wasn't sure which way to go with colours. I made a few blocks to test the idea out.

Making a start and hesitating

But I still couldn't decide what to do about colours. I was thinking of keeping it black and white...

Black and White Option

or maybe going with a whole rainbow of colour...

Rainbow Option

In the end I went with both options, and a few low volume plus colour blocks as well. Which is why my next problem was how to lay them out. I played with the blocks for ages trying out all sorts of options. In the end I went with this general layout... (I moved a few of these blocks before sewing them together).

Layout options

For quilting inspiration I went to Jacquie Gering and her wonderful Craftsy class, Creative Quilting with Your Walking Foot. This class is so good! I learnt so many things, the number one thing I learnt was don't run with your walking foot. I had no idea that I was supposed to go slowly, mostly when I'm quilting I'm trying to go as fast as I can, so this was a whole new concept. And boy did it work! I'm really thrilled with how the quilting came out on this, I think I can say that it's the best quilting I've ever done. Here's a close up of the quilting...


It's much denser than I usually do, I love the texture of it. I used the serpentine stitch on my machine and followed Jacquie's tips for keeping the lines running straight and close together.
For the binding I chose the black text print from Violet Craft's line, Madrona Road. I only had a little of this fabric left, just enough to finish the pillow. It makes the cutest binding!

I'm calling it the Sugar Loaf pillow because of the 'Sugar' text in the Suzuko Koseki fabric (top, middle). I can't wait to send this off to my partner. Also, in case you're interested, I'm planning a tutorial for this block so stay tuned! Now back to my to-do list!

Saturday, 28 March 2015

Quilty friends are the best!

I've had some wonderful mail from online friends this week that I just have to share. Late one afternoon, a courier van pulled up, it's always fun to receive a parcel when you're not expecting anything, and how exciting when you see the return address is Amy Sinibaldi from NanaCompany!  I was so surprised and delighted when, after very carefully ripping open the parcel, I found one of her needlebooks inside. A while back I sent Amy a little fabric and she made the needlebook as a thank you. It was a complete surprise as I had most definitely told her that she did not need to repay me in any way.
I've admired Amy's work for so long, and now I can say that her work is every bit as beautiful in real life as it is in the stunning photographs she shares on her blog. If you want to see her beautifully styled photographs of this needlebook, she wrote a really sweet blogpost here!  I've included my rotary cutter in my photos so that you can get an idea of the generous size of this needlebook,

And a close-up of some of the sweet details that Amy is renowned for...
I feel a little overwhelmed that Amy paid me back so generously! This needlebook will be treasured for a very long time! 
As if that wasn't more than enough, my friend Carmen (_name_taken_ on Flickr) sent me some of my favourite Carolyn Friedlander Botanics prints from her stash. Not only that but she included some Suzuko Koseki prints and the sweetest little Liberty hexi pincushion cover. I'm going to track down some ground walnut shells for the filling, I think they make the best filling!

The final installment of wonderful mail was a fat quarter of this adorable Heather Ross print from my friend Karen (Sew Peachey) that I had won in her #fabricforward giveaway.

Quilty friends really are best! Thank you dear friends, you made my week!!!

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