Sunday, August 27, 2006

These are two blocks, part of a Block-a-month challenge which I have been steadily working on for Knots and Needles P & Q. So far I have completed seven of the twelve. The eighth is ready in my work-box waiting to be constructed.
I decided that half of the blocks would be on a white background whilst the rest are to be on black - the eventual quilt should almost look like a rather bizarre chess board. These are ready to be quilted since I shall be constructing this as a quilt-as-you-go. Typically, I haven't started doing this yet!
The original designs came from a local Quilt Shop called Calico Wagon. They call these designs "Beartown Blocks".

The following photo shows the reverse of each of the above blocks. I had lots of fun cutting up squares for this, just wanting a lively pattern for the reverse of the quilt. I have already made enough to back twelve blocks.

Friday, August 25, 2006

A photograph of one of those UFOs I mentioned last time. This unfinished object is the Round Robin I started with Cranford Quilters. Its now got the stage of having all the bits sewn together. All I need to do now is the quilting. I only hope that I can get it all finished in time for the group's exhibition in early November.

This second photo shows my original block. The centre was the first piece to be done, being sent off to be added to during the run of the Round Robin. The cats faces were taken from photographs taken by my younger daughter of our own two cats.
For this Round Robin, the strips were not sewn together as the work progressed. Instead the pieces were all returned to the original block-maker to be pieced and quilted. I have added the two blocks either side since the pieces were returned to me at the end of July. I have also added sashing with written statements between each of the blocks.
The writing beneath the block reads "Now who's the cats paw?" A cats paw being someone who acts at the bidding of another. I feel myself, like many cat owners, to be the cats paw in this household.
I felt really privileged taking part in this Round Robin since the other members have made such a wonderful job of each of the strips.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

I have been rather busy lately catching up with some of my UFOs. Unfortunately this has meant not being able to keep up to date with this Blog. However, I have been able to complete one item - a bag.
It started off as an Origami Pocket Pouch. The design was one I found on this delightful site:

then add:


Part way through I decided that I couldn't bear to fold up the fabric square I had made and lose sight of some of the fabrics I had used. So a quick design change was made and this bag is the result. It has two small pockets inside a larger opening. I used cat buttons to fasten the handles onto the main body of the bag.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

These gorgeous flowers have been gracing my garden this summer. I just had to share them with you. My husband planted them and they really have made a glorious show of colour this year.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

The figure is now complete, butI have still not decided on a name for him. He is my Garden Guardian, and sits on his chair in my dining room with a small friend. This is a pottery wren I was given several years ago.

And now, the chair I have made for him to sit in. The base is one of my large cotton reels, emptied recently. The flower was made basically like the "Bowl full of sunshine" article written by Ann Kirk in the current "Stitch" magazine. It is wired to keep in position on top of the cotton reel.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

The top is now completed. I used some gauzy green fabric to extend the sleeves to the right length. The next picture shows the top of a sheet of water soluble paper being used to keep the fabric scraps together while I stitched. The stitching was intended to become a net making the cape for round my figure's shoulders.

The next photo shows the finished cloak - back view. I added bits to make it more interesting and in keeping with the figure.

The next piece being worked on is the chair - this will take a little longer to complete. The figure now has hair - but the photos will have to wait for some better light.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

I have started on a new project. A figure. I have not made figures for many years, the last ones being a set of marionettes I made of the characters in the "Hansel and Gretel" story.
This new figure has a head, arms and lower legs made from self-hardening clay. Having left these to dry for some weeks, due to work commitments, I started the armature and dressing the figure on Saturday. The joints are movable, so that I can pose the figure.
The clothes have been made using free-machine embroidery decorations. The working name for the figure is currently "Jack o' the garden". A kind of guardian based on the old English myth of the Green Man, or Jack o' the green.
I'm enjoying letting his character grow as I work on him.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

This the Hussif I completed yesterday. There is a matching bag to. All the lettering has been achieved using free-machine embroidery techniques. (Dropping the feed-dogs and drawing along a predrawn tailor's chalk line.)
The fabric of the Hussif has been made by putting together a whole load of bits of red/ pink and purple coloured fabrics. I cannot bear throwing away even very small pieces of fabric so keep these in a drawer. This time I just used Bondaweb to stick the pieces onto a piece of poly cotton fabric the shape and size required for the Hussif itself. The whole piece was then stitched using a figure of eight, swirly pattern. Again, the feed dogs were dropped to make the whole thing flow more easily through the sewing machine.
The bag, which I have called bagpurse was made in exactly the same way. This was only completed this morning. Neither was made from a pattern, but I must give credit to Roxie at Stitching Post for her photographs.