Sunday, 3 November 2013

A quilt for every day of the week!

Over the last 12 months, I have made quite a number of quilts as presents for friends and family - I think that there is nothing better than making something home made for special people in your life! 

Quilts are really good for little and big people, and although I have often been frustrated with them, the joy that they have brought to the giftees has made the suffering worth it every time! 

I've actually only ever complete one quilt for myself (you will see why if you look at the post below!) and I was really pleased with it for a first bash. I made it about four years ago and ever since it's been my go-to quilt for cozy nights in the Winter or for really warm nights in the Summer when I still need a cover to help me sleep.  

My first ever patch work quilt!
For all of the quilts that I've made, I've taken inspiration from the person that I am making for, or in some cases, the family of that person.  

The next quilt that I made was for Martha, a very special lady who is Andy's best friend's 3 year old daughter. We don't get to see them much so I wanted to make something that would remind them of us. I used Aneela Hoey's Little Apples as the little girl hula hooping is the cartoon version of Martha with her little light brown bob! I cut up each layer cake piece into 6 bricks (apart from a couple of cute larger pieces) and was slightly astounded by the size when I laid them all out!
Martha's quilt laid out
Obviously the quilt ended up being shorter than this once I'd sewn it altogether, but I also took a row off at each end so that it could be the same size as Martha's brother Emlyn's quilt (more about that later...). I used really thick wadding so it was a bit like taming a beast when it came to sewing it altogether! I also struggled with sewing the bias binding round the edge, which seemed to take ages. I'm also not very good at remembering to take photos of the finished article so unfortunately I don't have one of the final product!  

Now to Emlyn's quilt because of course he had to have one too. As a quick aside, Emlyn was born the day after our wedding, which means that Andy was best man-less on the day because this little man was already on his way! Emlyn was less than 6 months old when I was making his quilt so I took inspiration from his mum and dad, Kat & Martin. Kat is a really talented photographer and they both love to travel. I picked 8 different fat quarters from Birch Fabric's Next Stop and Commute as the cityscapes and bikes are so curt.  I decided to go for a square pattern instead of bricks. 

Emlyn's quilt all cut and ready to go
I have been told frequently that the quilts are a hit! When I get the chance I will be back soon to talk about more quilts for more people.

Monday, 18 February 2013

A labour of love

I have been thinking about starting a blog for quite a while now, but have often wondered whether it would be too much work! So what better way to start it then to write about something else that is becoming quite some work. 

After my wedding last July, I was left with 47 table runners, numerous place mats and various scraps of really beautiful fabric. As many crafty types often do, I put a lot of time and energy into making our wedding look just right. I used Liberty Poppy and Daisy as the inspiration for the wedding, which I sort of accidentally picked up for a tenner at a shop in Stratford-upon-Avon. After choosing this as a theme, the rest of the colours just seemed to follow suit (and then I just had to add in some purple - my favourite colour). So, with all of these bits and pieces left over, a colleague suggested that I make a patchwork quilt to always remind me and my lovely husband of our special day. 

Here's said table runners in action!
I decided to use the English paper piecing method to make the quilt, partly because I have never done it before but I also love the effect of the flowers and thought that it would compliment my specially chosen fabric well. I've made quite a few quilts on my sewing machine so was in the mood to try something more challenging. 

Here's all of my hexagons cut to size
Despite being married for over 7 months, I have only really just got cracking with the quilt. It took me an age to cut all of the hexagons out, both fabric and paper ones. And now I've made 9 flowers (Ok, 8 and a half...). Only 51 and a half to go, and then I'll be on to the cream border fabric and all by hand which is something I am definitely not used to.  

I've set myself a target of finishing the quilt for our first wedding anniversary, but despite the blog title suggestion, it may turn out to be more labour than love.