Thursday, 11 January 2018

The Last Sewing Project of 2017

Following the credo of 'waste not, want not' I might be in the habit of keeping more scraps around than I might ever possibly be able to use. In order to use some of my numerous scrappy fabric strips and selvedges, I decided make a scrappy string pillowcase. I had seen such pretty fabric string projects around, for example Maureen Cracknell's 'Diamond Strings Quilt


Puppilalla, scrap buster, patchwork,scrappy string pillowcase, diamond string



The scrappy string blocks are easy enough to make and I used an old linen sheet as basis for the fabric strips. The pillowcase even contains scraps of fabrics used for my very first quilt made in 2008. 


Puppilalla, scrap buster, patchwork,scrappy string pillowcase, backside


For the back I used an assortment of pink and berry coloured fabric pieces that seemed to work in the context of the blocks in front. When the pillowcase was finished, I was in two minds, whether I liked it or not. It seemed to me that I had been more in love with the idea and the small scale photographs of scrappy string projects than with the actual blocks in front of me once I had made them. Has that ever happened to you? I might not be in a hurry to make another scrappy string project any time soon.



Puppilalla, scrap buster, patchwork,scrappy string pillowcase,

I gifted this pillowcase to a friend of mine as a Birthday present and know that it will be loved there. This was the last of my sewing projects in 2017. Once I get the Christmas tree is out of the way on the weekend, I can concentrate on continuing the WIPs I wish to complete in 2018.

=)



Wednesday, 27 December 2017

2017 End of Year Review and 2018 Planning Party





Looking around IG and blogger sphere alike, the time of reviewing 2017 and making plans for 2018 has come round. As Yvonne of 'Quilting Jetgirl' is hosting this fabulous link party, I guess, I too could go back and check what I did and did not accomplish in 2017.

In December last year, I made plans to progress the 2016 quilting bee quilt tops. While I partially removed the blue and green bits in the blocks destined for the ‘Double Square Star’ quilt, I have not done anything else on this project. I made no progress whatsoever on the Bee Hive ‘Double Star’ quilt. So there are a few non-starters in 2017.

 2017 Accomplishments:


The ‘Rakish Needle’ Round Robin kicked off in March and it has been the most wonderful sewing experience in the round robin group this year. All six participants communicated via Whats App and it was just so much fun to see how everyone went about adding to each other’s projects. I had thought / hoped that we would be done with the round robin by the end of this year but that was a bit optimistic. There are two and a half more rounds to come in 2018 and I plan to relish those. I guess we might be done by Summer 2018.

https://puppilalla.blogspot.de/p/the-rakish-needle-round-robin.html


Other highlights this year, were my participation in Katarina Roccella’s blog hop tour despite a few hick-ups along the way. The fabric I needed for my project did not arrive and I had to alter the project plan and buy fabric instead. Despite all that and the time pressure building because the fabric did not arrive, I did manage to deliver on my commitment. In the framework of the blog tour I also drew up my first ever foundation paper piecing template. There is room for improvement but the template is serviceable. I made a baby blanket top in one of the possible repeats for that block and am still rather pleased with the outcome.



Late in spring the unexpected opportunity to help out as pattern tester for NAME presented itself and I volunteered to test the ‘Barmy Bear’ pattern, which I enjoyed immensely.

https://puppilalla.blogspot.de/2017/05/meet-uncle-mischka-pattern-testing.html

I participated in the ‘Getyourquiltywishesgranted3’ initiative on Instagram and, boy was I showered in fabulous fabrics. I won Rachel Hauser’s ‘Stitched in Color’ 'Summer Crush' fabric mosaic contests and received this gorgeous fabric bundle as a prize. I also just won a book 'Stoff und Faden' on fabric material science, which got reviews saying that it is really good. It has arrived but I have yet to read it.



This year I got to meet and make more quilty friends as I travelled to attend one of the monthly sewing meetings some of the Hamburg based quilters arrange AND attended my first ever sewing retreat organised by Mel Meyer and Allison Campbell-Richter. That were truly fantastic four days and I hope that many more meetings with these fabulous ladies will follow.

Whilst travelling in Japan, I had a lesson on how to sew a Japanese style floor cushion by hand with a Japanese Kimono maker in Tokyo and attended a Indigo dyeing workshop in Kyoto. I went fabric browsing too. =)


At home, I completed some pillowcases, a baby quilt and another baby quilt… almost.



Looking back, I am very happy with what I have achieved this year, even though I did not get done all of what I had set out to do. Some of that was due to starting new projects rather than finishing those already in progress but that surely is entirely beside the point – hem hem.




2018 Plans and Goals:

For 2018 I have decided to take appropriate measures in response to the WIPs not exactly amassing but demanding attention.

In order to finally progress the two quilting bee tops from 2016 and this year’s stash bee blocks, I have decided not to join any quilting bee groups in 2018. Instead, and besides also still being in the round robin, I will concentrate on finishing WIPs. I also have the ‘Oh Deer’ divisible squares pieces lying around waiting to be pieced together into a quilt top.

There will be more baby quilts that need stitching – there always are. =)

Apart from that, I should very much like to visit ‘Nadelwelt’ the local German quilt fair in May and meet my quilty friends in Hamburg again.



There is no need to plan further because new opportunities will present themselves as the year progresses. Here is to a wonderful 2018 for all of us.


Thursday, 21 December 2017

Thicket Fabric Baby Quilt ... continued


Puppilalla, Gingiber, Thicket Fabric, Baby Quilt, modern Patchwork, Embroidery, HST, Wonky Stars


Time is flying isn’t it? Currently, my little tiny flat is all about Christmas. I have fairy lights and twinkling decoration in gold and silver, a decorated Christmas wreath that I have bound myself and a tree too is up and fully decked out in gorgeous baubles. Just before Christmas took my apartment over I managed to complete the ‘Thicket’ fabric baby quilt top. I am in love with it. It is very easy to love though - fun pop colours, cute animal prints and striking contrasts achieved through colour blocking. This is a quilt everyone gets at first sight. 

When I look at the ‘Static Interference’ baby quilt I made before this one, the matter looks differently. ‘Static Interference’ with its low contrasts in wintry cool subtle colours and an abstract pattern is an acquired taste. It has I spy with my little eye elements but you have to spent some time with it before you find the fun. This is the great thing about sewing – that every project looks different.

Puppilalla, Gingiber, Thicket Fabric, Baby Quilt, modern Patchwork, Embroidery, HST, Wonky Stars



OK, enough of these musings. When I last wrote about this quilt, I had just about completed all the low volume parts and stitched them together to form the centre. Subsequently, I pieced all the wonky stars for the outer border for which I used up all of my yellow triangle scraps (Yeah!) and had to cut even more. I wanted to but could not for my life think of a way to smuggle in the very last strips of that dark blue ‘Joel Dewberry’ print that I used in the centre ‘Stellar Flare’ block. Therefore, I left it at the paler blue triangles (scraps again, Yeah!), which I also used in the centre, even though you cannot see that on the pictures as the amount used therein really is miniscule. I have used the dark blue strips instead in a few scrappy strip blocks that I made to make a pillow cover.

Puppilalla, Gingiber, Thicket Fabric, Baby Quilt, modern Patchwork, Embroidery, HST, Wonky Stars


In the quilt top, I framed all the geometric elements in white because similar to the animals in the centre everything else should appear to be floating too. The ‘Flying Geese’ blocks used to finish the blue triangle strips at either end really add interest and help breaking up the border a bit.

Puppilalla, Gingiber, Thicket Fabric, Baby Quilt, modern Patchwork, Embroidery, HST, Wonky Stars


It might be a tenuous association but to me the quilt top looks a little Native Northern Americans inspired - like a little totem quilt in pink and white. That might just be me though. I can hear you think by the way – yes, this is an awfully big amount of white in a quilt that will be drooled, leaked and dribbled all over by a baby. I declare that a problem for the parents. It shall be handed over in pristine condition and everything after that is out of my hands – ha ha.


Puppilalla, Gingiber, Thicket Fabric, Baby Quilt, modern Patchwork, Embroidery, HST, Wonky Stars




But seriously, I like how nicely the pink frames the centre and how engaging the quilt top looks. It currently measures 47 x 47 inches. To me it was important that the animals have breathing space and did not get smothered or boxed in. Once it is done this will be the biggest baby quilt I have made to-date. 

Puppilalla, Stash Pull, Color scheme, Fabric bundle



I have already pieced the back with more pink and orange. The quilt label is done too so I should really buckle down to build the quilt sandwich, baste it and get quilting. (Confession - my machine is really not up to quilting anything so I am putting doing it off.)


Puppilalla, Gingiber, Thicket Fabric, Baby Quilt, modern Patchwork, Embroidery, HST, Wonky Stars


I will do it once Christmas is out of the way. Pinky swear.

Happy Christmas / Holidays everyone


Tuesday, 5 December 2017

Stash Bee Queen of August - Block Parade

Puppilalla, modern quilting, quilted pillowcase, Static Interference Quilt Block, FPP, Foundation Paper Piecing,

I know it has been quiet on this blog these last few weeks but somehow, I did not feel like writing much, nor like sewing actually. My time was taken up with recovering from surgery and building the most fun LEGO set ever. I might slowly get back into the flow of things though. Lets for example take a look at the Stash Bee blocks that were made for me. This August I was the Queen Bee of our Hive 4 at Stash Bee. I had asked for my own design the 'Static Interference' Block to be made for me and had chosen a delectable colour scheme based on turquoise. Over the course of October and November the blocks arrived on my door mat, where I got to unwrap them all. 

Puppilalla, modern quilting, quilted pillowcase, Static Interference Quilt Block, FPP, Foundation Paper Piecing, Stash Bee



The blocks were lovely and diverse. The only unfortunate bit was that six of them came in the wrong size. My fellow bees had forgotten to check that they were printing to size. Therefore, I have now got a multitude of blocks that I cannot use well together in the same project.


Puppilalla, modern quilting, quilted pillowcase, Static Interference Quilt Block, FPP, Foundation Paper Piecing, Stash bee


Subsequently, I decided to use them up in small batches, commencing with my own queen bee sample block, as this one was incidentally not playing nicely with the others. This block was too coherent in itself and used a completely different shade of yellow.

Puppilalla, modern quilting, quilted pillowcase, Static Interference Quilt Block, FPP, Foundation Paper Piecing


One of my friend's Birthday came up and I used the sample block to turn it into a lovely pillowcase. Albeit my head being in the game that day, I made one mistake after the other, measuring wise and others. I finally gave up on my initial game plan and improvised my way to the finish line. And surprisingly enough, I really like my happy accident. It turned out better than what I had initially in mind.

Puppilalla, modern quilting, quilted pillowcase, Static Interference Quilt Block, FPP, Foundation Paper Piecing






















My friend has a couch in a darker shade of that turquoise and was really happy about her present. She wrote me a message a day later about how well pillow and couch got on and how much the pillow played diva on the sofa.

Puppilalla, modern quilting, quilted pillowcase, Static Interference Quilt Block, FPP, Foundation Paper Piecing


A job well done =)



Stash Bee