Thursday, 24 March 2011

Today was a good day!

Oh excitement upon excitement! Regular readers may remember that an age ago I entered one of my beaded necklaces in The Fire Mountain Gems Beading contest and made it through to the final.

Well they emailed me today to let me know that I am now a featured artist on their website. How exciting!

So that news, along with the sunshine and a few spare minutes to spend in the garden, has made today a good day!

Hope yours was too!

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Not remotely related to textiles...

but I thought I would share it with you anyway.
A friend has just published her first book as an ebook on Amazon.
It is called "Fate and a Glass half Full" by Sarah Trude and is a mixture of poetry & prose detailing her fight with breast cancer and all those other battles life hurls at us when we least need it. Not the most cheerful of topics you may think, but it made me laugh out loud in places! And not only is it a good read,  50% of the net profits go to Breast Cancer research so is surely worth the £3.45 price tag!

Good luck Sarah

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Spring has sprung!

I don't care that it is foggy as I look out of the window, or that I had to turn on the electric blanket last night to defrost my toes... Spring is on its way!

My front garden says so!

It may not look like much against the bark... but them's tulips!

... but the best bit is the Azalea!

What a cracker!

So it may still be a little cold out there... but change is in the air!

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

A new find...

I hate basting! I find it tedious and it makes my fingers sore, but it is a necessary evil if I want to quilt. Or so I thought!

When making my quilt "my log cabin has a swimming pool", I used 505 spray glue instead of basting, and I have to say I am pleasantly surprised with the results. 

I did the back layer first, and I would have found it easier if I had taped the layer to the floor first in order to stop it moving too much as I positioned the wadding on top. However, I learnt my lesson and taped the top layer down, and that made it so much easier! I supported the quilting with a quilting safety pin in the centre of each block, just to be on the safe side, but I didn't appear to need it! I had heard that the result is not permanent, but didn't know how long it would last... so I was a little concerned.  However, it took me 6 weeks to complete the quilting, and it was still stuck firmly in place once I had finished!

So now I have used it again for my mammoth sofa quilt! This 90x100 inch quilt is the largest I have attempted yet, and it made the old muscles ache to get it quilted. But now it is done!
After filling the washing machine to bursting so I could wash out the 505 glue, it is now proudly in situ with the two matching cushions.  I am delighted! So if you pop around for a cup of coffee over the next week or so you will have to sit on the floor until the novelty has worn off!

The colours are nothing like my usual choice, but the space is a little big for a riot of colour. They are muted tones, but I love the detail.
My favourite square has these fabulous autumnal trees on it. I have kept the quilting very simple to suit the style of the fabric, with variegated threads in straight lines down the quilt.

Now I am going to take a little break before I start the next one (slightly smaller at 90x90 inches) for the other sofa! At least one of them is now safe from kitty molestation!

Sunday, 6 March 2011

So what's next?

Well it has been another busy week in the Jackson/Payne household but I have made a start on yet another quilt designed to protect the sofas from little kitten claws! This requires 2 quilts, one of  90x100 inches and one 90 x 90. Now THAT is a lot of quilting!

Well I have made a start on the largest, and the top is almost finished. I have finished one of the cushions
 that goes with it too. This will give you a taster of how the 'bigun' is going to look....

I will share more when I have more!

Friday, 4 March 2011

Entering the Festival of Quilts

I was thinking that I might enter "My log cabin has a swimming pool" into the Festival of Quilts. I haven't entered anything before, and I am not sure which of the following two categories this quilt should fall in!
 The pattern is traditional (log cabin) but it is wonky... and uses what I would consider to be contemporary fabrics... so errrr..... So contemporary?

These are the two categories:

1) Contemporary Quilts
For quilts made from ideas derived from the traditions of quilt-making, but given a new approach. Use of original designs and contemporary fabrics, using any technique or combination of techniques, to include quilting (hand, machine or combination).
2) Traditional Quilts
For quilts using a traditional design or pattern. Quilts may be wholecloth, pieced and quilted, appliqué and quilted, or a combination of piecing, appliqué and quilting. Quilting may be hand, machine or a combination.

Any suggestions welcome!