A Scrappy Milestone

I know, I know, this is the wrong day.

But I’ve been hammering away hard at finishing up the blocks for the Hopscotch quilt and it’s done. All blocks are now complete.

I confess to a sense of relief. Oceans of 3 inch squares can be, well, dull, no matter how brightly coloured they are. 20 was enough, or 22 if you count the ones I used to make the recent book bag.

I don’t have a photo of every single individual block, since by the end I was moving them around a fair bit to get a layout I could live with. But here are the last 4. If you’re reaching for your sunglasses, I don’t blame you!

ScrapHappy Day will feature other scrappy projects for a while. I need to take a break from this before I start the task of sandwiching and quilting the blocks, and then joining them all together and binding it all. I have several ideas in the pipeline, so you won’t go short of colourful scrappiness.

And in other domestic news, I am happy to announce the hatching of Baby Sunbird(s?).ūü•āūüź£

Mrs Sunbird is no longer sitting; she and Mr Sunbird are now business shooting to and fro with beakfuls of hatchling-fodder, mostly of the wriggling insect variety. Since this is a sensitive time, I’m respecting their privacy and restricting access to that area for both man and dog. Which is why this photo was taking through both glass and the screen door. You are seeing Mrs Sunbird moments after stuffing something leggy into a gaping baby beak. It must be a relief to stretch her wings after all that relentless sitting.

I’ll try and keep you posted. Hopefully I’ll be lucky enough to capture the next life-stage for your entertainment!

Time to go and look at something fabricky that isn’t a 3″ square.

Scrappy Book Bag

I needed a bit of light relief.

There are 4 more blocks to stitch before I complete the top for my scrappy Hopscotch quilt for Days for Girls. I needed to stop and have a breather, and also to find a use for two blocks which didn’t quite fit into the lineup. They’re too strong, and without enough contrast between dark and light to fit with the other blocks.

It was obvious. These are 15 inch blocks, and large. I’d make a bag; one on the front and one on the back. I hauled out some leftover fabric: mattress ticking for the handles and gussets, and some old kitchen curtain fabric I had left over after recycling most of it to make a quilt duffel, which would be the lining. It’s a simple structure: front, back, side and bottom gussets, handles and lining. Make up the outer, baste on the handles. Make the lining and stitch them together at the top edge, right side to right side, leaving a 3 inch gap in the seam to turn the bag¬† through. Topstitch the top edge to neaten it and close the opening. Done.

It looks nice, doesn’t it?¬† I wouldn’t mind keeping it, except that I’m committed to making prizes for Days for Girls for their next annual raffle and cent sale.

Well, I’ll buy some tickets when the time comes. Maybe I’ll win it back!

ScrapHappy August

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.

Here are Blocks 11 and 12 of the Hopscotch quilt for Days for Girls.

I have another 10 layouts stacked up waiting to be assembled…

…and three more sets rolled up in bags waiting to be laid out.

That’s 25 blocks in total, which would give me a 75×75 inch square quilt. I originally thought of making it 90 inches long, but this is plenty big enough. Future squares will go towards the other project ideas I have in mind, such as table runners, heat pads, place mats, bags, cushion covers, etc.

ScrapHappy is open to anyone using up scraps of anything ‚Äď 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‚Äôd 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‚Äôt 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‚Äôll 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).

Kate (me!), Gun, Eva, Sue, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill,
Claire, Jan, Moira, Sandra, Chris, Alys,
Kerry, Claire, Jean, Jon, Dawn, Jule,
Gwen, Bekki, Sue L, Sunny, Kjerstin,
Vera, Nanette, Ann, Dawn 2, Bear,
Carol, Preeti, Edith and Debbierose

See you next time for more scrappy loveliness.

 

ScrapHappy April

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. But first, a bit of news: the result of the raffle of the Days Gone By quilt, table runner and cushion cover which I made for the benefit of Days for Girls, is a now-confirmed total of AU$3,080, which is an amazing result for scraps of fabric rescued from potential landfill.

The next Days for Girls quilt, Hopscotch, is coming along. Last time I showed you the first block. Here’s where I’m up to now ‚Äď Hopscotch blocks 2, 3, 4 and 5:

Note that these are not shown in the order they will eventually be placed, just as I’ve made them. I also have a load more squares cut. These blocks are 15 x 15 inches, and the quilt will be 5 x 5 blocks, or 75 inches square. I said it should come together a lot faster than the last one! I also have a bunch of other prize ideas for the next raffle, including a book bag/man’s tote, reversible laundry bag, totes, placemats, sets of pot holders, oven mitts tea cosy and coffee cup cosies. We’ll see how many of them I can crank out before the next cent sale/raffle next year.

ScrapHappy is open to anyone using up scraps of anything ‚Äď 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‚Äôd 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‚Äôt 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‚Äôll 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). This month, we are once again welcoming new members to the group: say hello to Edith and Preeti!

Kate (me!), Gun, Eva, Sue, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill,
Claire, Jan, Moira, Sandra, Chris, Alys,
Kerry, Claire, Jean, Jon, Hayley, Dawn,
Gwen, Bekki, Sue L, Sunny, Kjerstin,
Vera, Nanette, Ann, Dawn 2, Noreen,
Bear, Carol, Preeti and Edith

See you next time for more scrappy loveliness.

 

 

 

ScrapHappy March

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. The raffle for the Days Gone By quilt is in 5 days, so I’ll be excited to let you know what it raised next time. This month, I’m starting a new scrappy quilt for Days for Girls. It’s going to be called Hopscotch. I can’t tell you why, the quilt just told me that’s what it wanted to be called!

This is the first block, and I have 6 more blocks’ worth of squares cut, so things should move quite fast.¬† As you can see, it’s a simple 25-patch, machine-pieced, and I’ll assemble it using the QAYG method so I can quilt it myself. Should come together a lot faster than the last one! I’m thinking I might also use scrappy sashing between the blocks. I still have rolls and rolls of thermal till receipt paper for foundation piecing skinny scrappy strips, and it’s a great way of using the scraps which are just too narrow for the 3¬Ĺ inch squares I’m using for this quilt.

ScrapHappy is open to anyone using up scraps of anything ‚Äď 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‚Äôd 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‚Äôt 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‚Äôll 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). This month, Nancy is returning to the group, and we have two more new participants: welcome, Carol and Bear!

Kate (me!), Gun, Eva, Sue, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill,
Claire, Jan, Moira, Sandra, Chris, Alys,
Kerry, Claire, Jean, Jon, Hayley, Dawn,
Gwen, Bekki, Sue L, Sunny, Kjerstin,
Vera, Nanette, Ann, Nancy, Dawn 2, Noreen,
Bear and Carol

See you next time for more scrappy loveliness.

 

 

ScrapHappy February

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.

And here it is, the third and final piece of the prize trio I’ve made from the Days for Girls scraps. You’ve seen the completed cushion cover (third prize), and more recently the completed Days Gone By hexie quilt (first prize), but I’ve finally got the table runner finished as well, the second prize. This piece uses up the very last flower, the absolutely last hexagon made for the fundraiser. Metres and yards of perfectly usable and useful fabric saved from landfill.

The backing for this table runner is made from offcuts of the backing I made for the quilt, itself made from leftovers in my stash. The binding is made from the spotted spacer fabric I used for my Anemone quilt. It’s truly scrappy. Even the batting is offcuts.

Raffle tickets are now printed and ready to go. If you’re interested in buying one, go to the Days for Girls Mackay FaceBook page to see how. Just AU$5 a ticket for a chance to win the quilt, table runner or cushion cover, or 3 tickets for AU$10. However, at present, payment options are only available to Australian residents.

I know that several of you have expressed interest in buying tickets. Anyone not in Australia who’d like a chance to win, please get in touch with me/leave a comment so we can discuss options. For any of my readers outside Australia, we will have to ask you to pay for postage and packing if you win any of the prizes; for readers within Australia I will donate postage to a destination further than 50km outside the Mackay area. The draw is on 20th March.

And now, I’m ready for some squares. Or rectangles. Or triangles. Anything other than, you know, hexies… Onwards. I have lots of ideas for more fundraiser items, and bags and bags of scraps await!

ScrapHappy is open to anyone using up scraps of anything ‚Äď 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‚Äôd 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‚Äôt 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‚Äôll 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). This month, we have two new participants: say hello to Dawn 2 (sorry, I don’t know your surname initial!) and Noreen.

Kate (me!), Gun, Eva, Sue, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill,
Claire, Jan, Moira, Sandra, Chris, Alys,
Kerry, Claire, Jean, Jon, Hayley, Dawn,
Gwen, Bekki, Sue L, Sunny, Kjerstin,
Vera, Nanette, Ann, Dawn 2 and Noreen

Please note As I have not heard from anyone who has not posted for a year but who still wants to stay on the list, I have now removed those names. If you’d like to be reinstated, let me know, but it would be good to see you posting again!

See you next time for more scrappy loveliness.

 

 

 

 

and Dawn

Days Gone By: done deal

‘Tis finished, people.

Last night I set the last stitch in the binding and the label. It’s finally finished and ready to be handed over to Days for Girls next weekend, when our Saturday morning stitching sessions begin again after the summer break.

A couple of weeks ago, I handed the completed top and back and a large piece of batting over to a very kind lady called Judith, who is a long-arm quilter and who had graciously agreed to quilt it for free. On Thursday I got it back, beautifully stipple quilted, plus all the offcuts. For those not in the know, when a quilt is long-arm quilted you need to make the backing and batting at least 5 or 6 inches larger all round than the quilt top. I had been generous with both batting and backing, and I got one substantial piece and several smaller pieces of both back. Enough, in fact, to do the batting and backing for my table runner, also for Days for Girls.

I made binding from a number of partial or discarded jelly roll strips from other projects. I have some left over, but not, I think, enough to bind the table runner, so I’ll need to dig out more scraps for that.

So, without further ado, the photos. Appreciation to the Husband, who did the holding up.

front

Back

And the label:

A final summary for anyone not already familiar with this lengthy project: the quilt front is made from scraps left over after cutting out the pieces that go into the Days for Girls kits. When I joined the group, I was horrified to see usable pieces being simply thrown away. It meant that all the donated money and fabric was being partly wasted, so I determined that I’d find a way to rectify this. Days Gone By is the result. The backing and binding are made from scrap fabric from my own stash, which had not yet found another purpose. The only new parts of this quilt are the batting and thread, without which it would not be a quilt at all. It’s a truly scrappy, minimal-waste quilt.

It has been a very long pull. Some of you may recall that a large piece of assembled hexies was lost at the end of September 2019, and I had to start again. It was hard, but start again I did, and finally we’re across the line. This quilt, the table runner still in progress and the cushion cover I’ve shown earlier will all be raffled to raise funds to purchase fabric and other supplies for more Days for Girls kits. Although we have been unable to distribute the kits we make because of Covid-19, we haven’t stopped making them, and when travel restrictions are finally lifted they will once again go to the women and girls whose lives are changed and improve by them.

On to the next DfG quilt. This time I think I’ll go for something a bit quicker to make!

ScrapHappy January

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.

Here’s to a much happier and more hopeful and creative year for all of us. With that in mind, I gave my creative urge a swift boot up the backside, and took out the scrappy table runner I’ve been making forever for a while for Days for Girls to raffle at their fund raiser, together with the quilt (now at the long arm quilter!) and the cushion cover previously shown. I’m just over a third of the way through. Here’s where I’ve got to:

And here’s the next batch, waiting for the black separator hexies and then assembly.

(Sorry about the rather garish background, but I had to find a place where I could get enough light on the subject, and the kitchen floor mat had the best lighting.)

After that there will be a smaller section at the end. To finish the whole thing I think I’ll appliqu√© it to a rectangular background before sandwiching, quilting and binding. I have a bit of time; this is going in the raffle in mid March, but is needed for photography end of February.

ScrapHappy is open to anyone using up scraps of anything ‚Äď 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‚Äôd 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‚Äôt 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‚Äôll 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, Titti, Heléne, Eva, Sue, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan,
Moira, Sandra, Linda, Chris, Nancy, Alys, Kerry, Claire,
Jean, Jon, Hayley, Dawn, Gwen, Connie, Bekki,
Sue L, Sunny, Kjerstin, Vera, Nanette and Ann

Please note that I will be going through this list shortly, removing the names of anyone who hasn’t posted for a year or more. If you know that’s you but you’d still like to be left on the list because you have something coming up, just email me and I’ll leave you in.

See you next time for more scrappy loveliness.

Not so Secret Santa

The whole point was that it should be anonymous.

I’m talking about the Secret Santa gift exchange at my Days for Girls sewing group. We were given a $10 budget to buy a gift for someone else. These things mostly materialise as chocolates, mugs, hand cream, notebooks and pens or home made cookies in pretty storage jars, all the stuff you buy when you don’t know who your giftee is going to be. So I thought I’d do something different, something a little more individual. I made a set of 3 heat pads/place mats.

One was dinner plate size, one was snack size and one was mug size. On one side I used a really pretty print of colourful teapots on a black background. On the other side I used an equally pretty print of squares featuring sewing tools and references, also on a black background. I found a piece of leftover floral binding which was exactly the right size. It was quick, and fun, and unique.

I hadn’t given any thought to the fact that I am the only quilter in the group. So when my giftee opened her parcel, she took one look, and said “thank you, Kate, they’re lovely”. I sat with my mouth open, while everyone else fell about laughing*. Luckily, she gave me an opportunity to take photos of them before she stowed them in her bag. I’d totally forgotten to do it before I wrapped them in festive paper!

So, product success, (secret) producer fail… We all adjourned to a local caf√© bar for our Christmas break-up lunch. This was our last session for the year, and we don’t recommence until the end of January due to school holidays and summer travel plans. So it was great for all 25 of us to get together ‚Äď now that we’re allowed to once again, hurray ‚Äď catch up and talk and laugh over a great meal overlooking the sea. I’ll miss the Saturday morning stitching sessions, but they’ll be back, in the New Year.

I wonder if it’ll also be a new world…

*In case you’re wondering, I added the label after she’d opened the parcel…

A cushy number

I scored another bargain on Black Friday.

I purchased approximately $75 worth of fabric and notions, and I paid… $15. Lots of smugness, of course, but it always pays to have a serious rootle in the remnants and offcuts bin at Spotlight. One of my bargains was a pair of 20 inch cushion panels in a pretty pale grey and yellow colour scheme by designer Jocelyn Proust.

I have a deep hatred of inserting zippers on cushion side seams. It’s unnecessarily tricky and can end up looking lumpy. The zippers always seem to eat the surrounding fabric, the cushion pad, the lining, etc. So I’ve got into the habit of putting the zipper on the back, normally covered by a tidy flap. But this was a pre-printed panel, with no spare fabric to make a flap. I had to improvise.

I bound the edges of a slit across the width with a toning grey shot fabric, and covered the ends of a matching grey zipper to get rid of the bulky ends and stopper.

I inserted the zipper, overlocked the binding/facing, opened the zipper a little and sandwiched the front and back panels together. All the internal seams were overlocked; normally I line my cushion covers and bind the outside edge to finish, but having used up most of my ‘spare’ fabric to create a scrappy back for the DfG quilt, I didn’t any left in a suitable size!

The finished effect is neat and tidy, I don’t mind the bound edges round the zipper, and this will make another respectable prize in the fun-raising raffle for Days for Girls early next year.

And now to play with my next fabric score. Watch this space!