Go Teal it on the Mountain #3

And the next one.

A bit of straightforward appliqué this time. The pieces are applied using blanket stitch, strengthened with an inner line of straight stitching. I lightly spray-basted the pieces to hold them in position while I stitched them down, rather than fusing them to the background. This allows me to trim away the excess fabric at the back, which prevents the block getting too thick and stiff. I used tear-away stabiliser behind the pieces to stop the blanket stitch ‘channelling’ and drawing up the background too much.

I like this one a lot. The moon is a white on cream brocade print which looks like the cratering on the surface of the moon. I blanket stitched down the edge with cream, and then used a silver metallic thread and cream in the bobbin to do the inner stitching line. It gives the moon just a tiny hint of sparkle. Doesn’t show up in the photo, of course, but you can see it in daylight.

I’ll also have to make the usual teal Ovarian Cancer ribbon block to go in the centre at the bottom of the quilt, but I might wait a bit and see how many blocks I get in before I make any more.

Perhaps I’ll go a bit more abstract next time…

 

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Go Teal it on the Mountain #2

A little light relief from pink, then….

I’m really happy with the photos I’ve seen so far of the Ovarian Cancer team blocks for Go Teal it on the Mountain. (While I’m at it, shall we just shorten that to GTOM?) I’m not planning to show them till the blocks arrive, but I know some are on the way already, so you won’t have long to wait.

It was time to make a start on my own blocks. I like the crispness and accuracy of paper piecing, so that’s what I chose to start with.

A quick sketch of the idea, and then onto quilting graph paper. Designing a paper piecing pattern isn’t hard; the trick lies in deciding where the dividing lines between the sections need to go. One helpful point is that if you don’t make the block symmetrical, you won’t have a thousand seams all meeting in the same place, and your block will lie flatter. Anyway, I drew out the design, put in numbers to show assembly order and marks to ensure good alignment when the pieces are sewn together, and cut them out. Then I photocopied the pieces and added seam allowance around the outside. I always add more than ¼ inch, to allow me to trim out and to ensure the piece isn’t skimpy. You do need to remember that the finished design will be a mirror image of what you’ve drawn, since the fabric is stitched onto the back of your pieces. If you don’t want this, you have to trace all the lines and markings through onto the reverse, and make sure you work on the same side of each piece. It might help if you use a different colour on the reverse.

There are a thousand tutorials for assembling paper pieced blocks, so I won’t go there, except to say I like a dab of washable glue stick to hold the first piece in place rather than a pin, that I use an old, dull needle so I don’t spoil my good ones, and that tweezers are less dangerous than stitch rippers for fishing out those little elusive bits of paper in the corners 🙂

Here it is, assembled. The photo doesn’t give the true colour of the ‘sky’ so the contrast between it and the snow caps isn’t very clear. Three are darker and one is lighter than the sky. It’s the first of several different blocks – I have to wait and see how many I’m getting from the rest of the team, but I imagine I’ll be making at least three or four…

More soon.

Go Teal it on the Mountain: and so it begins…

If it’s September, it must be time for another fundraising quilt.

This is the last one we’ll make for Ovarian Cancer Australia, so let’s make it a good one. All future quilts will be made for the benefit of the Trudy Crowley Foundation, as discussed already with the fundraising quilt group. The Foundation is being set up following Trudy’s all-too-early death from ovarian cancer on Tuesday, in her memory and to continue the fundraising work she began so effectively. It’s the same cause, just closer to home, and a more personal motivation for me.

As you can see from the title, it’s going to be called Go Teal it on the Mountain. Well, you didn’t really expect an ovarian cancer quilt without Teal in the name somewhere, did you? The plan is that every block should feature some sort of mountain idea, whether it’s a simple version constructed of a triangle on a plain background, something a bit more elaborate, or even something pictorial. The design drawing shown here gives you some idea of the variety of shapes, sizes and layouts that are possible. I’m being as un-prescriptive as I possibly can here, so go a little mad if you’d like to 🙂  As always, the colours are shades of the Ovarian Cancer colours of teal and cream, from dark to light, fabrics plain or riotously patterned, and little bits of other colours are allowed so long as they don’t conflict or ‘read’ too strongly. It doesn’t matter if you do cream on teal or teal on cream, as a little variation will make the quilt more beautiful.

Here’s the list of people who have already put up their hands to contribute:

Lynn Hutton; Sue Brown; Carla Morris; Cathy Foote; Sandra Dorey; Robin Murphy; Gun Adrian; Emma Zocca; Lynda Swink; Tracy Pursley; Nanette Gilbert; Kathy Reeves, Jean Swenson, Jenny Ladbrooke and Margaret Creek.

If you’d like to join in and your name is not yet on the list, please let me know in the comments or send me an email. If you are no longer able to participate, please also let me know.  We have 30 blocks to make, and so far, 16 contributors including me, so you would be welcome if you’d like to participate.

The sizing follows the previous quilts. The blocks will finish at 12 inches square, and I’d ask you to give me an unfinished block of AT LEAST 12½ inches square, preferably a bit larger if possible. This will ensure that when the blocks are quilted I still have plenty of leeway for trimming out. It will, as usual, be assembled by the Quilt As You Go method. All participants need to do is send their block, and I will provide batting, backing, quilting and assembly.

This time, I’m asking for blocks to be with me by mid-December. I’m making a trip to Melbourne in February, and I’d like to be able to carry it with me to hand over in person to the lovely Emily at OCA. Hopefully that’s enough time for everyone to get their block or two sorted out. As always, I’ll be posting the incoming blocks as they arrive, to keep everyone’s creativity flowing.

So here we go. Time to bring out your teal stash, dear fundraising quiltmakers 🙂

Saying goodbye again

On Tuesday, I lost another friend.

Ovarian Cancer won the battle again, dammit. One day we’ll stop it, but in the meantime it continues to devastate families and friends as it steals away our dearest people.

https://www.dailymercury.com.au/news/farewell-to-one-of-mackays-most-inspirational-wome/3505925/

Yesterday was her memorial service, and it was wonderful. She’s been an inspiration and motivator to so many. The world is a bit paler and sadder because she’s not here any more. She was given a year at diagnosis and lived for two and a half, which tells you the kind of person she was. She didn’t stop for anything, and it was only in the last two months that reduced lung function and fatigue stopped her charging along at her usual pace.

Farewell, Trudy ❤ ❤ ❤

Signed, Tealed – and has been Delivered!

Good news.

I had an email today from Emily at Ovarian Cancer Australia about Saturday’s fundraising event.  Among other things, she said:

I just wanted to send you a quick note to let you know that the quilt has been sold! It was one of the most popular items from our silent auction with ten unique bidders!

The quilt went for several hundred dollars, and I want to congratulate everyone who participated and thank them for the hard work that made this possible. The quilt is now being lavishly admired in its new home in Melbourne, VIC. So, to acknowledge everyone properly: a huge thank you to Robin, Jenny, Margaret, Nanette, Lynn, Sandra, Lynda, Carla, Tracy, Esther, Gun, Sue and Kathy (and a grateful acknowledgement to Katy Cameron, for the use of her envelope pattern).

Tomorrow, 8th May, is World Ovarian Cancer Day. This is an appeal to everyone, male or female, to read about it, inform yourself on the signs and symptoms to look out for and share it with a woman you love. Knowledge is power, and there are still so many women who don’t know how this silent killer first appears. And if you can spare a few dollars, please contribute to your local Ovarian Cancer charity, to help support those with the disease and fund the search for a way to detect it early and save many more lives.

The next OCA quilt call to action will start in September. We already have 9 team members who have offered their time and fabric for the next quilt. I’ll reveal the name, the theme and any patterns you might want to use at that time.

Well done, everyone. I’m proud of you.

A mixed bag

It’s been a physical couple of days.

Wednesday: Stitches out and a pat on the back from the surgeon. The knee is healing well and in a couple of days it’ll be fine to swim. Thursday: My first tai chi class. In case anyone thinks it’s just slow motion wafting around your arms and legs to an imaginary sound track of traditional Chinese music, think again. Move slowly into a position. Hold it…hold it some more…slowly move out of it. Stand on one leg… for what seems like hours. Etc. Yes, it’s slow, but you can easily end up with wobbly legs and aching arms, as I did. But I loved it! I felt energised without being sweaty and purple in the face, and the effect lasted for ages. I’ll be going every week.
Friday: an hour of moderate torture with the physiotherapist, the first of 4. It brought home how much my left leg has wasted in the weeks of favouring it, keeping it immobile and having it strapped up in a brace. With luck I’ll build enough muscle to protect it from further damage.

In between these sessions, I’ve got half of the $11R blocks bordered with dark blue in my now deliciously cool sewing room. I’ll the rest done over the next few days. It looks really good, and will look even better with the colourful skinny scrappy joining strip between the dark blue borders. It’s also very nice having extra space now that I’ve been able to put away all the teal fabrics for the time being.

Best of all, I had a call today from Emily at Ovarian Cancer Australia to let me know that ST&D had arrived safely. She was so excited! The entire team thinks it’s a wonderful piece of work, and she’s definitely planning to bid on it herself. She also loves the mug rug, and says she’s planning to frame it!  I said I’d hoped she’d use it for her mug of tea, but she was afraid of making it dirty… They are having a professional photographer for the fundraising event, who’ll take photos of the quilt as part of the event record. If you worked on the quilt and would like a digital file of the final photo, let me know. She’ll also let us know who becomes its eventual owner, and how much it raises.

That was a really good phone call, and makes all the work everyone has done in putting the quilt together so rewarding.

 

ST&D: and…. rest

So. It’s done.

This has been such a fun quilt to work on. My well-known propensity for coming up with dreadful puns is well to the fore in the quilts I design for Ovarian Cancer Australia. ‘Teal’ has so many possibilities for punning, and I still have a long list to play with. But once I came up with the name Signed, Tealed & Delivered, the postal theme of this quilt quickly made itself known. It has been exciting to put the concept out there and ask who’d like to play too. I’m constantly surprised and delighted at the response, the generosity with time and fabric of the participants, and their willingness to move out of their comfort zones and try new ideas and techniques. It’s good for me too, as I have to try new things in order to achieve what is swirling around in my brain 🙂

I’ll be taking this quilt to the post office on Monday. I’d thought about sending it down to Melbourne with my visiting nephew when he returns home, but that’s taking it right down to the wire, and I’d like the team at OCA to have the quilt in good time.

I’m going to be taking a good break from teal for a couple of months. I have a number of quilts on the back burners, Footsquare Freestyle (F²F) is starting again soon, Mackay Show is coming up in June and there are quilts promised in the family, so I won’t be idle (no surprise there, then).

Once again, grateful thanks to all who have contributed, whether it’s a block, or several, or moral support or advice. This quilt wouldn’t have happened without you.

And now, I must go and sweep my sewing room floor, and dust, and put all those tiny snippets and threads of teal in the bin. Time for something different, for a while.