Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Hey hey y'all, how you doin'?

I've been a little laid up these last few weeks with my stupid all-tired-out-ness, so I've mainly been working on small projects that aren't too taxing, like small quilting blocks. Quilting and patchwork for the sake of it is pretty new to me, being from a garment making background, so it's been kind of a strange transition into making something that is almost purely decorative. Somehow it seems wasteful to me to not be able to wear the finished product! To ease myself in I've been working on a much needed pincushion/pocket thingy to go over the arm of the couch - very useful for all the tons of hand sewing I do. It has five 6 1/2" square patchwork blocks and a lightly quilted pincushion, so I'm trying out various block designs that I've never done before, plus one that I have: the Japanese scallop/shell one. (I have no idea what it's called, but the look of it has always appealed to me and I've used it before in textile design work with City & Guilds.)

My pincushiony thing has black as it's base colour and two particular patterned fabrics that I'm working the colours around - one is little purple and green golfers on an off-white background and the other is a collection of brightly coloured cartoon style bits of sewing room equipment on a black background. Then I have some burgundy roses on off-white and three different pieces of Christmas fabric, left over from making gift bags. I'll put some pics up soon so you can see what I'm talking about.

So far I've made a fan block, inspired by my visit to The American Museum in Bath a few weeks ago. They have a stunning fan quilt on display, which my friends and I loved and tried to take photos of, but to no avail. Fuzzy wuzzy photos. What made that quilt stand out for me was the black background, the bright fabrics applied to it, and the simple but highly decorative embroidery in every blank spot, nook and cranny and all along most of the fan seams. Absolutely gorgeous. It was like a sampler, but a useful sampler. All those stitches you'd love to try out but never seem to find the right home for, here it is. The perfect place to let your imagination run wild. Countless different stitch and colour combinations were represented in this one quilt. It blew me away. I thoroughly enjoyed making my little one.

Then I made a selvedge block. Very cool concept, using the cast-offs from the very fabric you're making the rest of your project from. That features some embroidery now too. Just a bit of feather stitch, you understand...

And now I'm working on a Granny's Garden of lovely hexagons. Well, I hope they're hexagonal enough to join together neatly. I freehanded it. Shrug. I remember Mum teaching me how to patchwork with hexagons when I was little. I made a pincushion :)

The Japanese shell/scallop thingamy one is sitting here waiting to be stitched. I'll have to cut a couple more pieces first, but it's looking pretty good. Maybe I'll embroider all over it!

Catch ya later!

:) V

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