Friday, October 30, 2009

Just Leaf It

As  a machine quilter I like to try new designs and quilting ideas.  I am always buying books for inspiration and a book I purchased recently was "Just Leaf It" by Kim Stotsenberg.  As the title suggests, the book explains how to quilt leaves into quilts, giving ideas for borders, sashing and blocks.

I am usually not brave enough to quilt a new design straight onto a quilt without at least having practiced it.  This time, I decided to make a small wholecloth quilt to try out these new leaves.  My little "Just Leaf It" wholecloth quilt is about 20 inches square.

Here are some close-ups of the quilting.

This was also the first time I had quilted the pebble background fill.  I love the look of the pebbles and the way it has made the leaves pop up.  The pebbles were, however, a very time consuming background fill to quilt and I found it hard to relax while quilting them.

I loved making this little quilt which now hangs in my studio - it is great to be able to show customers a quilting design on a quilt rather than on paper.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

A Grandmother's Flower Garden Bushfire Quilt

The bushfires in Victoria of last Summer, and in particular, February 7th caused many people to lose their lives, their homes and their livelihoods.  The recovery process is still in the early stages, with many people only just starting to rebuild their homes or even deciding on whether or not to rebuild.

In an attempt to provide comfort, the quilting community throughout Australia have made literally thousands of quilts for the bushfire victims.  The quilt I am featuring today is one such quilt which, in a small way, it is hoped will give some comfort to the person receiving it.

This Grandmother's Flower Garden Quilt was made by my customers Lesley and Jan and other members of their patchwork and sewing group.  Their patchwork group had been meeting regularly for years and one of their very own members lost her home during the bushfires - this quilt has been made for her.  The quilt has been entirely hand pieced over the last six months.  It is made from the most beautiful civil war reproduction fabrics.

Many of the hexagons have been carefully fussy cut, resulting in the most spectacular blocks - these are some of my favourites.

I have quilted this quilt with an all-over feather design by Timeless Quilting Designs called Feathered Curls.  The quilting has added great detail to the borders of the quilt without taking away from the piecing in the body of the quilt.

I hope the quilt will provide some comfort to the person receiving it, I know a lot of love has gone into the making of it. 

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Piecing for Myself - Wheel of Fortune Quilt

As a longarm machine quilter who quilts for customers, I am often asked whether I get to piece any quilts for myself.  Unfortunately, I don't get to make as many quilts for myself these days as I would like to.  There are always some quilts floating around in my head, many of which never get made.  I do usually have some piecing on the go.

The following quilt is a hand pieced quilt which is still a work in progress.  In fact, it has been a work in progress for about five years, although it seems to be finally coming together.  The quilt I am making is the Wheel of Fortune Quilt from the cover of Kaffe Fassett's book Caravan of Quilts.  I bought the quilt as a kit some years ago which is not something I usually do but it was a quilt I fell in love with and had to have.  I am hand sewing the quilt using the English paper piecing method which has made it a very portable project.  In fact, the quilt has been sewn over five summer holidays to Tathra, has been to numerous Port Fairy Folk Festivals and at swimming lessons too numerous to count.  When I take the project to our Wednesday evening sewing group the others just roll their eyes in disbelief that I am still working on this project.

The quilt is made in eight segments, all of which I have now completed.  It has finally stopped being a portable project!  All I need to do now to complete the top is to sew the segments together.

Here is a close up of a section.

I still have all the paper pieces in the back - I can't wait until the day I will be able to remove them all - which will be another huge task.  The paper pieces were purchased from the Lizard of Oz who have an incredible range of shapes ready for cutting out.

Will I finish this quilts this year?  Probably not..  What will I work on during my summer holiday now?  The next question will be how to quilt this - but that can wait a while.  Do you have any projects that have been on the go for this long? 

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Spring Garden Quilt

I would like to share with you a quilt made by Nicole which I have recently finished quilting.  Nicole's quilt is made from nine-patches in greens and pinks, joined together into larger blocks (does that make it a 36 patch?) and alternated with blocks in an ivory fabric.  The quilt also has a large border in the same ivory fabric.  The large, open spaces cried out for intricate quilting to me.  As the quilt is quite large, we decided on an all-over design called "Oma's Garden" by Sophie Collier.  This pattern is quite intricate and has gorgeous feathers, flowers, hearts and leaves.  I find it a great alternative to the more expensive option of custom quilting.

Here is a photo of the whole quilt - it was quite difficult to fit the whole quilt into the frame.

The following close-up of the quilt shows the amount of detail in this quilting design.  The quilting has added a lot of detail to the plain areas and yet has not dominated the pieced parts of the quilt.  This pattern is certainly one of my favourites although it does need to be quilted on the right quilt.

I hope you have enjoyed Nicole's quilt - enjoy your weekend and happy quilting.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Modern Baby Quilt

I have just finished quilting the most gorgeous modern baby quilt made by my customer Hilary.  Her quilt is to be a gift for a baby due early November and is based on this Simple Modern Baby Quilt pattern by Oh, Fransson without the applique.  Hilary has made this quilt using a beautiful colour scheme in greens accompanied by bright, cheerful prints.

I have quilted this baby quilt with an all-over swirly design called Waterworld.  Here is a close-up of the quilting and some of the gorgeous prints.

The back of this quilt has been pieced which has made for a reversible quilt - I love the parade of animals across the back and the texture of the quilting.

I hope this beautiful baby quilt will be received with love and enjoyed by the family of this yet to be born baby.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Blogger's Quilt Festival

I am participating in Park City Girl's Blogger's Quilt Festival - an online Quilt Festival being held from October 9th - 16th.

I have had a hard time choosing one of my favourite quilts but have decided to include Claire's Gelati Stars.  This quilt was pieced by my customer Penny a few years ago for her daughter Claire.  It is a gorgeous quilt with stars in soft colours set with hexagons in a cream fabric.  I particularly like how the pink stars draw your eye in.  Penny machine pieced her quilt with a class by Kathryn George at Calico & Chintz.  Please contact Kathryn directly if you are interested in this pattern at

Penny gave me permission to quilt as desired - I quilted all the stars with line-dancing swirls and quilted feathers in each of the setting hexagons.

Here is a close-up of one of my favourite pink stars:-

Some of the quilting in this quilt is quite dense which, as a machine quilter, I reall love although it is not to everyone's taste.  I discovered this when this quilt was exhibited in the Australian Machine Quilter's Exhibition in 2007 when I overheard someone say "and this quilt has been quilted to death".  It did teach me to be careful about what you say at an exhibition as the person who made the quilt may not be too far away.

I hope you have enjoyed Claire's Gelati Stars - I certainly enjoyed quilting it!  I hope you enjoy the Blogger's Quilt Festival.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Teal Blue & Green Baby Quilt

Having recently featured some quilts with fairly intricate quilting, I wanted to share a fairly simple, yet beautiful baby quilt.  This little quilt was made by my customer Sue and it shows that a quilt does not have to be complicated to be effective.  Sue has combined beautiful teal blue and green fabrics, set the squares with white sashing and cornerstones to achieve a gorgeous quilt.

This quilt has been quilted with an all-over design called Spiral Path to add movement and to make the eye travel around the quilt with its otherwise straight lines.

I hope you have enjoyed Sue's little quilt.  Have a great day and happy quilting...

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Quilt Show Ribbons - Australian Machine Quilters Association Show 2009

I have been waiting anxiously for the return of the two quilts I entered into the inaugural Australian Machine Quilters Association (AMQA) Show which was held on September 26th  and 27th in Queensland.  I was thrilled to hear that both quilts won first prize ribbons in their respective categories and couldn't wait to see the ribbons.  I have now received one of the quilts and its ribbon in the mail but the AMQA have asked if they could show the other quilt in the Queensland Quilt Show which is being held 21st - 25th October so I can only show you one of the ribbons.  It is a rather beautful ribbon, very elegant ..

The two quilts I entered were Zigue Zague which was entered into the Functional Custom category and Oma's Garden which was entered into the Edge-to-Edge category.

I made Zigue Zague this year and, as the name suggests, it is a zig zag quilt made from solid colours.  I love the simplicity of strippy quilts, especially with solid colours as they lend themselves well to allowing the quilting to be a feature.  I quilted Zigue Zague with a feather design along the lenth of each zig zag, changing thread colours for each change in fabric.  Each zig zag required five passes of quilting.  Zigue Zague was also entered into the Australian Machine Quilter's Exhibition held in Melbourne in July this year where it was awarded a 2nd place in the Custom Quilting Category.

The following is a full view of Zigue Zague with its ribbon at the Australian Machine Quilter's Exhibition in July this year.

This is a close up of the quilting.

I made Oma's Garden in 2008 and it was also entered into the Australian Machine Quilter's Exhibition in Melbourne that year where it was awarded 2nd place in the Edge-to-Edge Category.  Oma's Garden is also a strippy quilt which alternates wide strips of a floral fabric with plain linen strips which again allows the quilting to be a feature.  Oma's Garden was quilted with an intricate edge-to-edge design which features flowers, leaves and feathers.

The following is a full view of Oma's Garden.

This is a close up of the quilting.

It was an absolute thrill to have won 2 first prize ribbons with 2 quilts in the inaugural AMQAS.  I would like to thank the organisers of the Australian Machine Quilters Association Show for their hard work in getting the first show up an running and the sponsors for their support - well done and I'll look forward to next year's show. 

If you would like to see photos of the other prize winning quilts please visit the AMQA-inc blog.