Wednesday, 27 October 2010


The 2 quilts that I have made for my twin beds must be quilted now and I have come up with a cunning plan! I would like to have a go on one of those big long arm quilting machines, on a frame with huge rollers. This would enable me to quilt both of them in a day …perhaps! To that end, I have asked a local shop owner to let me have a go on hers and, as she knows me well and has faith in my abilities, she has agreed! I am so excited!

In return, I am making her a quilt top using her latest fabric range. She will have to quilt it naturally but once complete, she can use it for display to draw attention to the fabric and show people how they can use it. I have chosen to do a French Braid quilt from a book by Jane Hardy Miller, published by C&T. Here are the first 2 strips:

French Braid

Once all the preparatory cutting of the centre squares, strips and end triangles has been done, this is a super quilt to sew. The book has good instructions and a series of logical steps to follow. It’s a joy to use and so quick.

Auditioning fabrics

I need to finish off each strip with a triangle and for this I need to audition a suitable fabric. Green runs through the centre of the strips and is in every fabric so that seems to be the best choice to me.

This is what it looks like when the vertical joining strips and the surrounding borders have been added. I really like the colours and will find it hard to hand over the quilt.

Completed quilt top

I did hand it over after taking this pic; the under exposure doesn’t do the quilt justice at all!

I have also been diverted onto machine embroidery again, this time making boxes using sheers, threads and pelmet vylene.

Box before folding

The centre of this box was created using threads only, sewn as a sample onto a vanishing layer. It seemed like a good idea to use the sample and so the sides of the box were sewn to match the colours.

Detail of embroidery

The box below was sewn on the one day course with Suzette Smart at Castle Court Quilters. I know that if I am at home, I will always choose to work with fabric so I enjoy the discipline of just playing with threads and sheers at someone else’s workshop. These boxes will make good Xmas presents, filled with coasters or special chocolates.

Completed box lid

A close up

Monday, 11 October 2010


It seems a while since I have added anything to my blog. It isn’t that I don’t have anything to say; my time has been taken up with my latest book, Dual Image Appliqué. This is being done by AQS in the US and has been advertised for sale for many weeks now, but the truth of the matter is that it is still only at the design stage. AQS have had problems with other author’s books and designers which has delayed the publication of my book but rest assured, it will be out before too long. I have just spent a week going through the text and layout with a fine toothcomb so I know, when all is sorted, it will be a splendid book.

And now, more important, what have I been doing on the sewing front. Here is the fabric selected for the border on the pair of quilts that I have made for the twin beds in the guest room:

Border fabric

Border attached

The first border is a 2” strip, the next is constructed from 5” x 2” dark strips (left over from the quilt centre) and 2” squares and the final border is 3 ½” wide. These are now ready for quilting.


I love the colours in this wall hanging and I continue to work on it when there is nothing more pressing. I have many projects at the stage where they need slamming under the sewing machine: for the mundane sewing of seams or the repetitious quilting of background and border patterns and the like. But this aspect of my work satisfies my creative urges. I love working with colour!

Gresford Sampler

The 3 strips of the Gresford Sampler have been quilted and they are ready for the 4 vertical border strips, which have yet to be quilted. And it’s only when I see the blocks on the wall like this that I can assess the look of the quilt. To me, the top centre panel looks up side down; the pink diamond needs to be at the top of the block. Am I just being overly fussy about this? Not really, because I find that if something doesn’t look right, I know my eye will always go straight to it whenever I look at the quilt. My advice would always be to alter it before it is too late. Here’s the block so can you see what I mean?

Tumbling Star