Monday, 8 December 2014

Monday Count: EPP Finished

Oh.  Well apparently yesterday was the last sunny day for a while. So an indoor shot of the finished quilt will have to do.  I hope you can see the spiral quilting, which goes across the small low volume stars but stops around the EPP and appliqué areas.  That left me with endless ends to sew in.

Of course you can't see the whole quilt here, but I've posted more than enough images of the individual blocks since I started in April. All the posts have been labelled EPP if anyone wants to look.

This project started with an exercise in EPP shapes - I wanted to do something other than hexagons.   Once I started, I wanted to carry on and make something useable.  The Monday link up at Life Under Quilts kept me going - thank you, Jessica!  Triangles, squares, pentagons, octagons, rhomboids, curves and yes, hexagons have all found a place.  There is loads of fabric left.  Can't believe how much.  Maybe I will sell fabric packs when there is another royal event.....

This trellis block might still be my favourite and I may well use it again - next time on a bigger scale, maybe with a dark centre and pale trellis pieces.

One last count for the Monday link-up - there are 1206 pieces. You won't see this again unless there is an amusing disaster in the wash. 

Monday, 24 November 2014

Ruby Star Rising

Some work has been done on the EPP quilt, but I have a few million ends to sew in before I show it to you again.

 I did start and finish these four pouches though. 

One of them was made with this leatherette stuff, which I bought on Derby market when it was the biggest market in Europe with loads of fabric stalls.  It (the market) is a sad apology now.  The leatherette was surprisingly easy to sew, although you should not try to iron it.

If anyone knows where I can get some more of this fabric please let me know.  It is Ruby Star Rising by Melody Miller for Kokka.

Back to the EPP next week when I hope it will be finished at last.

Friday, 21 November 2014

Monday, 17 November 2014

EPP - the final lap?

Attempting new-to-me spiral quilting on this gloomy November morning...

There is likely to be cursing and unpicking later on... cover your ears now.

Monday, 10 November 2014

Liberty Hexie Triples - Monday Count

A quick count this week - I've been working on the "other thing" so I've only done a few triples this week.  There are now 101 individual hexagons in there.  Ruler for scale.

The binding is on the "other thing" (don't know what to call it), but I still need to add hand quilting.  Some lovely sun this morning.

Joining up with Jessica at Life Under Quilts - Jessica has started a monthly meeting - looks like fun, but a bit of a commute for me.

Monday, 3 November 2014

Liberty Hexagons - Triples

I broke my one-project-at-a-time rule.  The red white and blue EPP is not finished - I will get around to putting the sandwich together this week.  Maybe I was missing hand piecing - anyway,  I started this little project.  

The hexies are quite small.  Putting three together makes it look less fussy I think.  Each hexie triple takes a tiny amount of fabric, so I'm glad I kept all my Liberty scraps.

This piece may end up in a second experimental zip around purse, so it does not need to get much bigger.  The first botched job is here.  

I was pleased to see on Instagram that Jessica is planning to start her Monday EPP link-up today over at Life Under Quilts.  I love instagram, but you can't do a link-up there.  I'm looking forward to seeing what others have been up to.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Urban Jungle Bloggers

I'm diverting from the blog's usual subject matter to talk about Urban Jungle Bloggers, who add a variety to my quilty instagram feed with beautiful images of house plants.

I've always liked house plants, but others in the house think plants should be outside the house and refer my shelf of plants as "Death Row".  Unkind, isn't it?  And I haven't killed any lately.

Here are the current inmates of Death Row and I think they look pretty healthy.  During October, Urban Jungle Bloggers are collecting "plant shelfie" images - so here's mine.

Monday, 20 October 2014

Liberty Coin Purse

I wanted one of these.
They are very good quality leather. But I didn't want to pay £195. Could I make one out of fabric?

Here's the inside.

Of course the prototype had to be blue.  And it had to be Liberty Lawn. 

The construction caused me several headaches. While I was making it I had a few ideas on how I could have constructed it differently.  I don't usually make two of anything but this might be the exception.

Here's my first effort:

 There is so much wrong. 
  • the outer zip looks ragged - I had to unpick it twice.  It's still uneven.
  • the inner zip does not work properly - I used a cheap one that I had on hand.
  • I could not get my stitches close enough to the edge around the curves even using a zipper foot.
  • The bottom credit card slot is too shallow.
I have a new respect for anyone who can make this type of thing successfully.  Maybe that Liberty purse is actually worth £195?

Monday, 13 October 2014

Week 28 EPP - more stars

 I decided I didn't like the huge contrast between the pieced blocks and the plain blocks... I made some stars

Hmm.  One diamond spare.  Never could count.

...and I've pinned some of them on.
I think I like it better this way.

Friday, 3 October 2014

Week 27 EPP - Top finished (?)

It's all QAYGed and sewn together and the backing fabric (Kona Prussian) is ordered.  The garden bench is not big enough for a decent outdoor pic, but I did manage to hide most of the ladder in the overgrowth. 

Thanks so much for your thoughts on how to quilt this one:

Sarah Martin emailed me some great ideas - she imported the image into Paint and drew lines on it - simple but effective!  Thanks again, Sarah.

This crooked window block was also a bit of a challenge:

I've certainly proved to myself that you can make almost any shape or pattern using English Paper Piecing. But I have to admit that while I like some of the individual elements,  I don't like the whole thing very much right now.  Plus that blue is blimming awful for collecting white fluff from the cotton batting. And white fluff from white cats. I hope that when this quilt is backed and bound it will all come together a bit more. Maybe some more quilting in the plain blue areas - maybe even more appliqué.

As it's Friday and it's almost a finish, I'm going to link up with Crazy Mom's Finish it up Friday.  If you want to see earlier posts about this quilt, click here.  

Next week I will link up with the Monday Morning Count over at Life Under Quilts.

Monday, 29 September 2014

Week 26 EPP - Quilting

This project is now officially 6 months old.  I never thought it would take so long.  Things might speed up now that I have started machine quilting.  The plan is to quilt each block individually before joining them up.  Some of the pieced blocks are going to be a challenge, so I started with two patterns where I could see how to do it.

 Diamonds for this one...

...and a simple cross hatch for this one.  The quilting has pulled it a bit to one side but - I'm strong - I will pull it back.

I'm using cotton wadding (batting) so I can iron it to beggary when I join the blocks together.  The one I'm using promises 1% shrinkage which I think will be OK.  More worried about the colour running - reds and indigo?  Gulp.

Not a clue how I can quilt this one though - I can't see a straight line anywhere.  Ideas appreciated.

Linking up with Jessica for the Monday Morning Link Up.

Monday, 22 September 2014

Week 25 EPP - Piles of Paper

Having completed all the blocks, it's time to move on to the next stage.  I rewarded myself with my first ever hand quilting to emphasise the star in the centre of this block...

..before sitting in the sun to remove the remaining paper pieces.

Fortunately I removed most of the papers as I went along, just leaving the edges in place.  Most of the papers were re-used three of four times.

I think I will still end up with a small mountain of paper pieces to go in the recycling bin.

Linking up with Jessica at Life Under Quilts for her Monday Morning Count, and WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced .

Monday, 15 September 2014

Week 24 EPP - the last piece

Just one more piece to sew before I have to stop prevaricating and join everything together somehow.  I hope I can make it in to something useful.  The decent camera is awol at the moment so apologies for blurry i-pad shot.

Linking up with Jessica's Monday Count at Life Under Quilts.

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Week 23 EPP - the last block

I am taking far too much time to finish this last block.  Perhaps I secretly don't want to finish it?

Once again I'm a bit late linking up with Life Under Quilt's Monday Count.  There are 122 pieces in this block and I have about 60 more to go.

Monday, 8 September 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

I was so pleased to be tagged by Fiona, who blogs at Celtic Thistle Stitches, in the Around the World Blog Hop.  Fiona is a very talented and creative stitcher who designs her own patterns and recently had a project featured in Fat Quarterly magazine.  Her blog is fun to read and she is always trying new skills and sharing her experiences.

This blog hop is a bit like a chain letter (but not the evil kind). The idea is for stitchers who blog to answer a few questions so that we can all get to know each other better.  I don't know who started the blog hop, but you can track back by visiting Fiona's blog, then back step by step as far as you want. I've certainly seen some blogs that I have not come across before.  It seems harmless and does not require the tipping of ice buckets over the head, just a few questions to answer, so here goes.

What am I working on?
For almost six months I've been working on a slow English Paper Piecing Project using red, white and blue fabrics.
When I started I didn't have a plan.  I just wanted to explore how various shapes fit together.  It's turning into an EPP sampler quilt.

How does my work differ from others in its genre?
I'm sure loads of people have done similar work.  Although I never use a pattern or buy templates, I do get ideas from blogs, pinterest and magazines.   In fact this block came from a floor design.

Why do I create what I do?
Who knows?  But it's a good question. One which does not have an answer.  I made this Liberty Lover's Bag because I could not find one I liked in the shops and because I had a strip of hexagons I did not know what to do with.  

How does my creative process work?
That sounds a bit grand.  There is usually some sort of idea right at the beginning.  But plans change as I go along - I just go where the idea goes, usually only working at one thing at a time. 

That's it, folks!  As part of this blog hop I'm supposed to "tag" three other bloggers - but I'm going to rebel.  If you're interested in what I'm interested in, have a look at the blogs in the list on the right, or at my Pinterest boards.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Week 22 EPP - Leaded Light or Kansas Dugout

Looking back at my first blog post on 14 April about this project, I see that even then I recognised that it might take a while.  I finally got the piece I started with to the right size. 

This pattern is seen quite often in old leaded light windows like this one.

It is better known in US quilting circles as Kansas Dugout.  You can do it on the machine, but it is fiddly and involves partial seams which I've never tried to master.

Here's the hot mess on the back, with pieces of the graph paper still visible.  Some of those indigo fabrics are quite thick - I did have some trouble getting the needle through, but no trouble getting it through my finger.

Only one more piece to upsize now, before I retreat from the garden and return to the sewing machine to sew the blocks together.    Not bad timing, as there is a chill in the air.  Summer's lease....

For Monday's Count at Life Under Quilts, this 12.5 inch block has 210 pieces.  With any luck I will have finished the last block next week:  if I get that far I will count up the grand total.

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Week 21 EPP - Dragon's Claw

It seems that all I've done this week is add a couple of rows to this piece.  Must try harder. It is flatter than it looks - the piece was scrunched up in a corner while we cleared the kitchen for a re-fit. No cooker, dishwasher or washing machine for three weeks.  Yikes!

Linking up (a bit late) with Life Under Quilt's Monday Count to see what everyone has been up to.

Monday, 18 August 2014

Week 20 EPP

Well, I got the trellis pattern square up to size.  156 pieces of this size don't add up to much - the finished block will be 12 inches square.  I've left the papers in around the edge as I am still not sure whether to join the blocks together before quilting, or try one of the many QAYG methods, or even hand quilt it or tie it.

This pattern was complex enough to keep me interested, although the proportions are slightly different from the parquet floor advert which gave me the idea.  I wouldn't mind a floor like that in my house.

Three pieces are left to increase to the right size.  The one on the right will be the easiest so I will start there.

The book in the image is a German pattern book.  On the right hand side is a chess board type pattern.  My current plan for these blocks is like that, but I was planning plain blue squares to separate the pieced blocks.  Now I am wondering about white or off white.  Dithering as usual.  

When America wakes up I will join Jessica's Monday link at Life Under Quilts.  Last week I met Pamela who I met online through Jessica's blog.  Pamela is an American living in Japan, who does all sorts of crafts, especially embroidery.  She was over here on a visit so we had a cup of tea at Hampton Court. How English! It was great fun to meet Pamela, who is the first person I've met in real life through blogging. 

Also linking with Hexie Weekend here.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Pets on Quilts Show 2014 - Muppet

To be fair to both our cats I thought I should also enter Muppet in the cats on quilts category of the competition over at Lilypad Quilting.  But I missed the boat, as the competition has now closed for entries.  Never mind.  There will never be enough cats on the internet so I'm posting these anyway.

Muppet is usually such a neat cat, who always folds up her paws tidily.  Unlike her sister Fuzz, who sprawls everywhere.  

But last week she was overcome by Liberty.  Or maybe it was the heat. We will never know.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Week 19 EPP - Trellis Pattern

Not much to report this week.  Miss Ted is on holiday, so a relief inspector looked at my efforts to upsize this piece which, in spite of another week's work, has still not reached 12 inches square. 

Miss Ted will not be best pleased if I have not finished this and started another when she gets back next week.  Better get on with it then...

Linking up with Life Under Quilts, of course. And because its slow, Knotted Cotton's Slow Blog Linky.

Monday, 4 August 2014

Week 18 EPP - Virtual Quilt

This is my plan:

As you can see it's a screen shot of a spreadsheet - there's no quilting software in the Blue Moth house!  Rough and ready, but it's good enough.  The scale is wrong and in the image I've duplicated some of the all-over EPP blocks.  In the real quilt they will all be different.  I had to cheat because I haven't made the EPP blocks big enough yet!  In fact, the piece which began this saga is not there, because it needs at least a week's work.  

Some sewing has been done though.  I made the octagon piece bigger.  Here's Miss Ted using it as a garden quilt in the evening sunshine. She's even taken off her cardigan, but not the socks. Never the socks.

I'm still working on making the other blocks up to 12 inches square. Next week I will carry on doing that. I am looking forward to finishing that stage so I can start joining some of the blocks together.  

As always. I'm linking up with Life Under Quilts and WIP Wednesday.