Sunday, 8 January 2017

Week 1 of #1YearOfStitches Completed

This year I decided that I wanted to make a new years resolution to do some 'personal' creating. So with this in mind I have decided to take part in #1yearinstitches.  This is a challenge that involves stitching something every day in 2017, posting it daily on Instagram (with the tag #1yearofstitches), and then posting about it once a week on your blog. I heard about it here on Instagram and here on Facebook!

So I've decided to post on Sundays. I have also added a couple of additional rules. 1 - no unpicking! I can go back later and stitch over the top but I can't undo it. 2 - no planning. I'm not sketching any guidelines, just stitching away and seeing where it takes me. 3 - I am trekking in the Himalayas in April for charity and as I have to carry everything, taking a hoop isn't possible.  So to keep up with the challenge I am going to take small scraps of fabric to stitch on, and then applique them into the hoop when I get back. 4 - materials.  I will use anything that comes to hand, fabric, lace, ribbon, buttons etc, anything as long as it is hand stitched in place. 

I started off with some floral designs, just to get some stitches down. The hardest thing to do is often to get started!
Day 2 - some florals
Some lazy daisy flowers, my favourite #colonialknot (a variation on a french knot), #blanket stitch and some seed stitches.

I feel the need for polka dots! Why not?
Satin stitched polka dots

It has been a busy week with sample requirements building through the week, but I managed to get a bit done every day. The most personal element was stitched on January 7th. I spent all day making bags on my sewing machine so it was nice to finish the day with a bit of slow stitching! That was the day that they laid my childhood heroine Carrie Fisher to rest, and it made me sad. So I added a sprig of rosemary created in #bullionstitch. Rosemary represents remembrance and so it felt right to add it to my #1yearinstitches.
Rosemary for Remembrance
 I am really looking forward to seeing how this develops through the year!
End of week 1

Thursday, 5 January 2017

A Christmas Quilt gift with Accuquilt Value Die

I love making gifts at Christmas.  It takes time and effort, and often ends up more expensive than buying a present. It is a common misconception that homemade = cheap! It certainly isn't that. However, there is something so special about putting your heart into someone special.

I created a lovely 'boy quilt' for the partner of my bestie Sarah using my Accuquilt and the included Value Die .  It cut up a dream, even the checks and lines on the patterns didn't cause me any issues as I lined up everything neatly in the die. The fabric was Homespun Dunroven House from Create and Craft (link is here if they still have any stock!). There are 12 fat quarters of beautiful soft cotton and I used most of it - there are a few scraps left over. I feel I need to buy some more now - it is beautiful to stroke.
The design was made up of squares, 4 patches and pinwheels. The Value Die set cuts:
  • Square 4.5" (4" finished)
  • Square 2.5" (2" finished)
  • Half Square - 2" Finished Triangle (cuts two)
I just cut as I went along, so I didn't really count how many of each I cut. I separated each 4 inch square with a pinwheel or a 4 patch, and I made sure 2 colours didn't touch each other, but apart from that I went random!

You can't beat simple Stitch In The Ditch! It fitted perfectly with this design.

I had a play with Flange binding  (the fine red edge along the binding). I wanted a very fine red line to add interest to the edging and this fitted the bill.  It is very effective and quite easy to achieve.  If you fancy a try, just Google Flange Binding Tutorials and you will see lots of tutorials on how to do it.

Finished item before I handed it over to it's new home - where it was greatly appreciated. Of course I made a label but I forgot to photograph it!

Finished and ready to wrap!
So if Santa brought you an Accuquilt this year, get that Value Die and get playing about! You will love it!