Sunday, May 27, 2007

Quilt Meme

I saw this Bad Quilt Meme on Two Lime Leaves and thought I'd play along. Feel free to play along if you like.

Usual rules: Bold for things you’ve done, standard type for the rest. (my personal comments are in green)

Made a quilt with no knowledge, no skills, and no understanding that either are needed (my first quilt was made from a rudimentary cardboard triangle and sewn together without the points matching. The quilting was done with some very cheap invisible thread...more like fishing line and I didn't baste the layers together so it bunched as I sewed. Then I proudly hung it on the wall! I'm kinda glad to say it has long gone in the dumpster!)

Created an abomination and (at the time) was proud of it (see comment #1 above)

Created a quilt that was so hideous it made people or animals go blind

Had relatives throw a quilt you made outside in the muddy yard for the dogs to chew

Used severely mismatched fabric weights when piecing, for example, heavyweight denim and lightweight cotton

Didn’t pre-wash fabrics and later had them bleed all over the finished quilt (it was a red fabric on a strawberry appliqué quilt...luckly some painstaking stain removal on a q-tip solved the majority of the problem)

Used badly mismatched needle and bobbin thread

Puckered seams

Misaligned pieces

Ugly colours

Polyester fabrics that pilled (yep definitely did that and it's on a quilt still in use today)

Thick, scratchy polyester double knit fabrics

Batting that bearded up through the fabric

Free-motion quilting whose stitch size changed radically from stitch to stitch (that still happens :o)

Huge bird’s nests of bobbin thread that clogged the throat plate of the machine and broke the needle

Cluelessly attempted to stitch with a broken needle for several moments, thus perforating the quilt

Made stitches big enough to put your big toe through

Quilting lines that were about 6″ apart and allowed the stuffing to migrate and bunch up

Finished quilts that weren’t “square” and/or were badly blocked (see comment #1 above)

Quilt tops that wouldn’t lay flat, that had a “volcano” in the middle or perceptible ripple (I call that a bra quilt)

Backing that bunched up while quilting, leaving a portion of the batting uncovered (see comment #1 above)

Hand-tied a quilt with heavy crochet or regular yarn, which required a really huge-eyed needle which left giant holes in the quilt

Erroneously equated a quilt with a blanket, and “finished” the edge of the quilt with a blanket stitch using scratchy acrylic yarn.

Had to use pliers to force the needle through the quilt, yet didn’t understand that this might be a sign that something was fundamentally wrong

Backed with a 100 thread count bed sheet. (Extra points for polyester)

Quilted with fishing line (see comment #1 above)

Bled/sneezed/spilled coffee on a large section of quilt while making it

Had people compare your quilt to one they saw at Wal-Mart

Finished a quilt and only then realised that you hated it (I've had that happen a few times)

Gave a quilt to someone and had them be speechless - and not in a good way

Trimmed loose threads on a gift quilt at the last minute and cut a hole through the top

Sewed one or more fingers to the quilt, then had to carry the sewing machine and quilt around the house while looking for a screwdriver to remove the needle

Created appliqués with satin-stitched edges, which after a shamefully brief time became frayed-edge appliqués that flapped their way free of the quilt

So who's next to confess their sins :o)

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Package #2

Today I got my second package from the Flibbertygibbet Fabric Swap. This time is was from Soozs. She sent me some lovely green fabric, one of which was a lovely Batik with Elephants. She also included some beautiful trim and some silver gems. I've got some great ideas for all these goodies.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Fabric, Fabric, Fabric

I received my first package from the Flibbertygibbet Fabric Swap. Along with the swap fabric, Gail sent me a lovely selection of vintage Liberty fabrics, buttons and trim and Green and Blacks yumm! Gail used the most interesting paper to write her note. I don't know if you can see in the picture, but it has pictures in the style of old sewing patterns.

I also wanted to share with you the lovely fabrics my mother brought me from Canada. She asked me what I would like her to bring me and I said jokingly...fabric...and she took me seriously! How cool is that!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

And the Winner is....

Dum da da dum....drum roll please! The winner is:

Congrats Fiona!

(Please send me your snail mail address and I'll get your prize in the post)

I want to thank everyone that left comments..and a special thank you to those that notified me that the original post had no link to the comments page...hence why Fiona's comment says "it's fixed" ..the comments link, not my give away :o)

Thanks to everyone that participated and hopefully we'll do it again soon.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Post #50 and I've been Tagged..

It's my 50th post and in honour of that I've got some goodies to give away! Just leave me a comment on this post by Tuesday 12 noon BST and I'll put your name in the hat for these fat quarters and fabric push pins.

Sarah Jayne has tagged me to share 7 random facts with you. Hopefully you'll find them interesting.

1. Love....that's what got me to jump the pond. My husband and I met when I was barely 16 years old during a visit to my godparents in the UK. My godparents had 4 teenagers with a "revolving" front door and as a result there were plenty of new people to meet. There was one visitor in particular that was visiting my godparent's eldest son that I thought was rather nice. When I returned home to Canada I wrote letters to all the new friends I had met..including that rather nice boy and he was the only one to reply. Two years of letters and several visits later I told my father I wanted to move to the UK. But alas, my father had something to say about his 18 year old daughter emigrating to the UK and with no alternative, the relationship eventually fizzed out. Over the next 10 years both myself and the DH married and divorced different people and I had my eldest daughter. In November 2000 we found each other on the Internet and after several emails and chats we met up and realised that we could pick up just where we left off. In March 2001 I moved to the UK and we were married in 2004.

2. My middle name is that's not that strange, but my sister's middle name is Isabel too!. Isabel was my grandmother's name; a lady who was so well respected by the family that several members of the family have used it for their offspring.

3. I'm allergic to is the DH. (Now that's karma isn't it!) I have found that I don't really miss them out of my diet as I have found an alternative to eggs for baking cakes and cookies. It's potato starch and it works really well.

4. I attended Sacred Heart School of Montreal; an all girls grammar school for my high school education. We had the ugliest uniforms! But the education and the experience was the best.

5. I've taken 4 driving tests in 2 different countries, 2 different provinces and I've passed twice...and I've only been driving for 18 months. Have I confused you?

6. I used to own part of a mail-order quilting shop in Canada which now has gone on to be a successful quilt store in Montreal. It used to be called S & J Coton, but when I moved to the UK I sold my half to my business partner and she opened a quilt store called Quilt Classique.

7. And lastly, I grew up in a little suburb of Montreal called Baie d'Urfé. When I was growing up my father was part of the council and I made a suggestion to him that they should build a bike path along the main road..a few months later the path was made and now I can smile knowing I've left my mark on the world.

I had to share these really neat pictures my DH took today of me making mega bubbles for my can imagine the squeals of delight as she burst those bubbles! (click on the picture to get a larger view)
Now I'm suppose to tag 7 more people..but most of them have already been tagged. So if you haven't been tagged and want to play along, consider yourself tagged.

Friday, May 18, 2007


Yesterday, I spent the day at the Quilt UK Exhibition in Malvern. I hitched a ride with a good friend and her husband and had a fun filled day with lots of laughter and shopping. Unfortunately because of copyright laws etc. etc. I can't show you any of the quilts in the exhibition, but I can tell you it was a good show with some very impressive quilts. There were plenty of vendors selling everything and anything quilt related. There was even a stand selling glitter by the scoop that when applied to fabric with their glue is completely machine washable! I didn't buy any, but I will keep it in mind if ever I want to do something glitzy.

This is just outside the entrance.

Luckily those dark clouds didn't come to anything and the day stayed dry.

This is what I bought.

And this is me...looking very deep in thought! How did I not notice my picture being taken!

BTW, this is post #49! I'm quite impressed with myself that I've written that many posts in 6 months. You'll have to check back real soon to see if I have anything special planned for post #50 (hint hint...)

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Thread Mosaic

I found this neat website that allows you make mosaics using either your pictures from flickr or tags from flickr. This is what I came up with with the tag "thread". Neat eh?

I have no idea what the old buildings have to do with thread...but they still look nice. :o)

1. Alameda Flea Market - A bowl of vintage threads, 2. A button, 3. que sepa coser, que sepa bordar, 4. Delicate Temporality, 5. Delicate Temporality, 6. spools, 7. Delicate Temporality, 8. Untitled, 9. swan, i mean duck, 10. Heart, 11. Gaia, 12. Basket of Vintage Sewing Supplies, 13. Basket of Vintage Sewing Supplies14. Not available15. Not available16. Not available

Friday, May 11, 2007

Sneaky Peek...

I'm just putting the final stitches on the binding of the Trumpet Stars. In the end I decided was happy with the quilting around the patches (done with a walking foot) and as a result never did resolve why I struggled with the free machine quilting in the appliqué. I suspect I had a dull, regular needle and that I would have had better luck with a new quilting needle. Thanks to all of you that gave me good advice. I will keep all your great tips in mind when I go to do my free machine work on my next project.

Today I was back at the machine working on some invisible machine appliqué using YLI invisible's like sewing with hair! I mentioned the first few blocks in an earlier post. The chicken was drawn in EQ6 and I love it so much I'm using it in two projects (see below)

I have also been experimenting with heat 'n bond lite and finishing the edges with a straight stitch in coordinating thread. I have no idea what will happen when I wash the finished quilt, whether the edges will stay put, but then I'm hoping to incorporate some quilting to hold it together too. I love the colours in these blocks..very fresh and very now.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Finding a needle (quilter) in a VW Haystack

Huh? You must be wondering how that title has anything to do with anything...but I assure you all will become clear...

Today we started our day with a trip to the car boot where I found a stall selling men's shirts for £1. After checking the labels for 100% cotton, I bought 3 of them to add to my collection. I still don't know what I'm going to do with them, but at a £1 each I wasn't going to leave them behind. I just nodded and laughed when the man complimented me on doing my husbands shopping! LOL

In other news, I wanted to share with you the first block I made on my new Bernie. I ordered a 1/4" foot for it and tried it out on Friday and it sews so beautifully..and accurately.

Now, back to that needle...This afternoon's field trip took us to Stanford Hall in Leicestershire where there was a huge display of Volkswagens of every shape, size and era. There was also an impressive amount of merchants selling everything from campervan salt and pepper shakers to every conceivable spare part for any of the VWs ever made and amonst all that I found a needlewoman...a quilter selling pillows and patterns! My husband almost couldn't believe his eyes that I managed to find something for me in and around all that car stuff. Well I'm not surprised...we quilters have a homing instinct for these things :)

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

The hubby does goood...

You know it's a really special thing when you mention a sewing machine in passing and the hubby takes enough notice to let you know when there is one going on Ebay....that's what happened last week and look what arrived today!

At my last quilting meeting a friend of mine had a Bernina 707 Minimatic and I couldn't help notice what a solid little machine it is...and that was it, I decided that I wanted one and that it would double nicely as a machine for my daughter. I had been resisting buying one of these £50 machines that only does 8 stitches and made of plastic parts knowing full well that it would only be a matter of time that it would be in pieces. I took the advice from many ladies that an older, metal machine would be a better start for her. The nice thing about this machine is it will be nice and portable. I can leave the computerised one at home!

So if anyone out there has any info on these machines I'd love to hear from you. I would be particularly interested in knowing what the knob and the lever on the lower right side are for...something to do with satin stitching. The manual isn't very clear how these are used.

Thanks in advance :o)