ScrapHappy September: Days Gone By – border progress

Welcome once again to ScrapHappy Day!

It’s the day my friend Gun in Sweden and I host ScrapHappy, a day for showing something made from scraps.

Last time, I’d just begun creating the border blocks to go around the hexie centre.

Cutting, arranging and stitching these 12 inch blocks gets addictive. Cutting and arranging I can do at my Saturday morning Days for Girls sewing group, and it’s an opportunity to collect yet more DfG scraps to be incorporated (as if I needed any more, what with the 80L (20 gallon) storage tub of them I already have).

Anyway…

I got a bit carried away with the stitching bit the past few weeks, and here’s where I am now:

Two sides of the border completed, another under way, and you can see now how I intend to use it against the hexies. I need to finish the right hand side, and start the bottom border. The zig zag edge of the hexie panel will be hand stitched down onto the border squares and I’ll finally be able to release the last papers from the hexie edge. As always, you can click to enlarge the image.

Mouse has also been the delighted recipient of a scrappy project this week. On a recent fabric shopping trip, I picked up a very long skinny remainder of polar fleece, about 60cm wide by 2 metres long (24×80 inches). I had been trying to find him a Cuddlepillar, but without success. Due to the obsession greyhounds have with these plush toys, it’s virtually impossible to buy one. So I decided I’d make him some-thing he could play with in the same way. Success!  He spends hours ‘killing’ it, shaking it, dragging it about, and when he has finally vanquished it, lying on it! It’s just the long piece of polar fleece sewn into a tube and stuffed with two tragic flat old bed pillows which had been on the point of going in the dustbin, rolled into sausages. The fact that the fleece is printed with cats is purely incidental….

ScrapHappy is open to anyone using up scraps of anything – no new materials. It can be a quilt block, pincushion, bag or hat, socks or a sculpture. Anything made of genuine scraps is eligible. If your scrap collection is out of control and you’d like to turn them into something beautiful or useful instead of leaving them to collect dust in the cupboard, why not join us on the 15th of each month? Either email me at the address on my Contact Me page, or leave a comment below. You can also contact Gun via her blog to join. We welcome new members. You don’t have to worry about making a long term commitment or even join in every month, just let either of us know a day or so in advance if you’re new and you’ll have something to show, so we can add your link. Regular contributors will receive an email reminder three days before the event.

Here are the links for everyone who joins ScrapHappy from time to time (they may not post every time, but their blogs are still worth looking at). If you’ve copied this list from previous posts, please use the one below as it’s the most up to date. We have two new members this month, Del and Nanette – Welcome, ladies!

Kate (me!)Gun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancy, Alys, Kerry, Claire, Jean,
Joanne, Jon, HayleyDawn, Gwen, Connie, Bekki, Pauline,
Sue L, Sunny, Kjerstin, Vera, Del and Nanette

See you next time for more scrappy loveliness.

“I like to cut”

Yup. So do I. But not that way.

Let me explain that very ambiguous introduction. Today, I went back to see the oncology surgeon, to tell him what I’ve decided to do about the pre-cancer lurking on the left side of my chest. We’re going to watch and wait, I told him. Okaaayyyy, he said. Hmmm, I thought. So I asked him if I had made the wrong decision. He told me I was asking the wrong person. “I’m a surgeon”, he said, “I like to cut”. He went on: at this stage of the Little Bugger’s development, it didn’t really matter either way. We were going to nip it in the bud now… or later. I was OK to wait. We’ll do another MRI in 6 months, and then again every year. I have a history of ‘invisible’ tumours, and it needs to be an MRI or it might not show up till too late. I went away as happy as a person can be with a very gently ticking potential bombshell on her person.

I laughed about his “I like to cut” all the way home. His candour tickled me as much as his expectation that I would get the joke. And seriously, I like to cut too. I’m a quilter, it’s all about the cutting. But it made me think about my cutting collection.

This is just a selection. (The one on the right, with a scabbard, is a handmade and signed blade.) I also have pinking shears and an extremely hi-tech pair of secateurs, plus all my ‘bad’ scissors, the ones I allow the Husband to use. Then there’s the kitchen knives. It’s probably best not to let me get started on those. I keep the number of an excellent mobile sharpening service in my phone – he comes to you and you bring out your blunt, burred, nicked and notched, and the lovely Dave restores them to shiny vorpalness. You see? I am a cutting tragic. I’m sure there are others out there who have more, but for a stout, middle-aged quilter there’s quite a lot of unnecessary redundancy there…

I have never minded the initial stage of a quilt, where you stand at your cutting table and with a new blade in your cutter and freshly pressed fabric, you turn meterage into magic. Measure twice, cut once?  No, no, no! Measure twice, and cut and cut and cut… crisp, tidy shapes that come together to create something more than the sum of its parts.

Yes, I like to cut 🙂

Sugar sprinkles 3: finished pillows

All this waiting has been very good for my To Do pile….

I have reached the worktable surface! These two Sugar Sprinkles pillow cases were at the bottom, waiting for the backs to be attached and the binding sewn on.

And here they are. The Husband’s (left) has blue floral back and binding, and mine (right) has pink floral back and binding. It’s the same print, just different colourways.

They are housewife-style pillowcases, which I’ve made with a very deep tuck-over panel inside to ensure the pillow filling doesn’t creep out when it’s compressed.

So that’s it for Sugar Sprinkles until such time as I actually receive all my F2F blocks, which will form the two individual quilts I want for our armchairs. It could be months, so I thought getting these two ready was a way of keeping this project alive.

Until then, Sugar Sprinkles is some pretty eye-candy 🙂

BM&I #48: Parterre block 15

Finally, Block 15, after missing Bee, Myself and I completely last month.

Blues, for a change. It’s quite a striking block, combining as it does not one but two high-impact prints. The one on the left is from a quilt I made at least 12 years ago, and may be the last significant piece of that fabric I have left. No scraps left behind in this household…

Here’s Block 15 of the Parterre quilt:

 Bee, Myself and I is a forum for ‘selfish sewing’; any stitchery which is purely for pleasure and not to a deadline or for anyone else. The original concept belongs to Carla of Granny Maud’s Girl. To find out more, you can click through on either her blog link, or using the button a fair way down in the left hand column of this blog.

Until next time…

Verité #3

Last one, I think.

I felt that a quieter block was also needed, and that I already had sufficient hot bright colours. This pale green, white and grey with just a bit of orange and blue seemed to fit the bill, and incidentally, the colours all came from scraps. I don’t know the ‘proper’ name for the block, as I drew it up from something I saw somewhere a while ago. If anyone knows, do let me know.

That’s six blocks for my F2F collection, and if they don’t provide enough direction for what I’m hoping for from the other F2F participants, I don’t know what will!

I’ll be putting all of them up in the gallery now. Today has been a bit trying and I’m going to give myself a day off sewing tomorrow. Time to have a mental health day, give the dog a long walk, read a new book, eat some more chocolate and encourage the hours to pass a little faster than they have just recently.

What do you to do make time pass quickly?

Verité #2

And here’s the next one.

This is the Arkansas Traveller block. I made the diamond centres first, and then used them as a single piece when I paper pieced the rest. I love how it turned out 🙂

Don’t you love how it looks like juicy orange segments? I think there may be one more, and then I’ll stop till it’s finally time for the whole F2F group to send out their blocks. Verité will sleep peacefully till then…

Meanwhile, I have other things on my mind. And chocolate to eat.

Wish me luck for tomorrow’s gadolinium injection and MRI 😦

Verité

I have a name now for this quilt-to-be.

“Le gris est la couleur de la Vérité(Grey is the colour of Truth): Andre Gide

For me, it’s also the colour of order, good sense and moderation. It complements and controls all that lavish colour. There’s a lot of grey in the world, but thankfully for those of us addicted to colour, there’s also a lot of that. Both are necessary, just as sadness is necessary to show what joy looks like.

Today’s block is Circle of Geese, but I have turned it into a spinning windmill by using a different shade of grey in the centre. It’s one of my very favourite blocks, and is a perfect example of why I love foundation paper piecing!

Tomorrow, I hope to have my Arkansas Traveller block ready.

Silver (grey) linings…

I have a big grey cloud lurking in my life just now.

So displacement activity was required to stop me obsessing about it, well… obsessively. What better to occupy my mind than making some F²F blocks for myself, with flashes of gorgeous brilliant colour amidst the clouds of grey? Having said that, the grey fabrics are lovely too, and don’t deserve their synonymity with depressing dreariness. Grey is my second favourite neutral, and with very dark indigo, are so much less ‘dead’ than stark black or white.

So anyway, here are the fruits of my displacement. I’ll probably make even more, since not only is it successfully distracting me, but I’m absolutely loving the outcomes – and I still have plenty of grey of the non-cloud variety! You’re looking at Circle of Friends, Perkiomen Valley and Chain Link, in that order.

Next on the list: Arkansas Traveller, Circle of Geese and one other I haven’t chosen yet.

Lullaby 3: finished

It’s done.

Quilted and bound, yoyos stitched down and label added to the back.

The label shows the first verse of the famous Brahms Lullaby. One of the lines translates as ‘slip under your quilt/covers’ and I knew the name was meant!

The baby girl for whom the quilt is destined is due to be born in November. I’ve also been asked to make a pair of gifts for her 8 and 6-year-old brothers, so you can look forward to seeing those in the not too distant future, as everything has to be sent to the family in Austria at the same time.

Meanwhile, the next job is some F2F blocks for myself!

ScrapHappy August: Days Gone By

Welcome once again to ScrapHappy Day!

It’s the day my friend Gun in Sweden and I host ScrapHappy, a day for showing something made from scraps.

Last time, I’d finally completed the hexie part of the Days Gone By quilt. (It might still need some fillers on the left and right hand edges, but it’s otherwise substantially complete.) It was time to head into border country once again!

After some not entirely boring trimming work, I’d assembled 36 x 2½ inch squares which worked nicely as a 12 inch finished block. The first of many border pieces!  These will all be joined into an outer ‘frame’ onto which I will appliqué the hexie panel. I’m making an effort not to use duplicate fabrics within each block.

As you can see, I have the next one laid out ready to go, and yet another one trimmed out. It’s easy enough to take a pile of scraps, a small quilter’s ruler, a cutting mat and a rotary cutter along to the Days for Girls sessions instead of a large piece of hexie hand-stitching, and it sure does chew up the scraps nicely!

ScrapHappy is open to anyone using up scraps of anything – no new materials. It can be a quilt block, pincushion, bag or hat, socks or a sculpture. Anything made of genuine scraps is eligible. If your scrap collection is out of control and you’d like to turn them into something beautiful or useful instead of leaving them to collect dust in the cupboard, why not join us on the 15th of each month? Either email me at the address on my Contact Me page, or leave a comment below. You can also contact Gun via her blog to join. We welcome new members. You don’t have to worry about making a long term commitment or even join in every month, just let either of us know a day or so in advance if you’re new and you’ll have something to show, so we can add your link. Regular contributors will receive an email reminder three days before the event.

Here are the links for everyone who joins ScrapHappy from time to time (they may not post every time, but their blogs are still worth looking at). If you’ve copied this list from previous posts, please use the one below as it’s the most up to date.

Kate (me!)Gun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancy, Alys, Kerry, Claire, Jean,
Joanne, Jon, HayleyDawn, Gwen, Connie, Bekki, Pauline,
Sue L, Sunny, Kjerstin, Vera, Del and Nanette

See you next time for more scrappy loveliness.