Delft #7: thinking through the border

So, I put down my secret project for a couple of hours.

It was time to get cracking on the border for Delft. I’ve been putting it off because I knew that the fabric I’d bought wasn’t quite long enough now that I’d added an extra row to the bottom of the hexie panel. I knew I’d work something out, but it was going to take a bit of consideration

Sorry about the gloomy lighting, it’s been a very dark and overcast day

So, here’s the result. The border pieces are short by 8 inches each. I had enough left over to improvise cornerstones, but not the length I needed to make each side long enough to mitre the corners elegantly. Cornerstones it was, then. The borders are 10 inches wide. This meant that there would be a Y seam running diagonally up to the cornerstone. The fabric is, as you can see, very directional, so I needed a solution that would address this. So I cut half square triangles and alternated the print direction. I think it works. I’d already made the 4 pink hexie flowers thinking I might use them to disguise any, um, messy bits unsuccessful improvisation. I’m not sure about them. Do you think they look like afterthoughts, or like I’m trying to hide something?

I need to be happy with the solution before I start work, as the next stage is to press all the edges super hard, pull out all the papers and then baste the edges to the borders. Once they’re secured, I’ll make the mitre that forms the bottom of the Y seam and then insert the cornerstones. If I do the mitres first, it will inevitably mean that something doesn’t fit, there will be gaping or puckering and it will be nasty. Far better to attach the edges first and then fold away the mitre.

So that’s the plan. Probably. For now, anyway.

Delft #5, and doggos

I’m making progress.

The central section of Delft is assembled, with joining hexies stitched in. It’s slowish work, but I really like the effect. I have 70ish hexies in another fabric which I want to use for the next outward row, and I can revert to the fabric I’ve used in the centre outside that, as I have a lot more of it.Fingers are holding up well, and it’s undemanding work I can do while I listen to YouTube or podcasts. I also have two yards of a lovely stripe fabric for the border on its way, 1cm stripes of white and dark blue. I’ll show it when it arrives.

In other news, I’m taking care of two doggo friends of Mouse’s, Sunshine and Tiny. Their Staff dropped them off this morning on their way to a short break on Hamilton Island, where doggos are not allowed. It’s been an interesting couple of hours as they explored the house, the back yard, Mouse’s beds and toys, etc. They have finally stopped leaping up every time a car passes, they’ve had snacks and are now draped across the floor with maximum inconvenience to foot traffic! Mouse is delighted with the toys they brought with them, especially the squeaky fluffy zebra toy. It may have to be pried from his jaws when they leave on Wednesday afternoon…

The only downside? I now have three pairs of eyes trained on my plate while I eat….

A hex of a lot…

I just couldn’t stop myself.

I needed holiday hand work. Well, in my case that’s usually hexies. I didn’t have a hexie project on the go, and rather than come up with something different as an alternative, I grabbed a bag of papers, a small sewing kit, poked around in my scraps and an idea emerged. We all know I have a weakness for dark blue. But I also happened to have quite a few bits of soft pink.

And there were also the blue and white scraps of lawn from the backing of Anemone. I expect they’ll have to be supplemented, but I’ll see how far the supply takes me.

And on this holiday it has rained. And rained. And rained. So instead of haring off on various activities and adventures, the three of us have hunkered down, listened to books, eaten snacks, watched YouTube, snoozed (not just the dog, I might add), and in my case, stitched hexies. Many, many hexies. The picture below is just the ones I’ve made up into flowers. The rest are still in a bulging bag of blue – with a bit of pink.

Sorry about the poor lighting. I don’t carry decent lights in the caravan and it’s very grey outside, so this was the best I could manage.

I don’t know where this is going yet, but I’m feeling a back-of-my-chair quilt or similar size, and I’ll be stitching the outer edge down onto a straight border rather than taking the hexies out to the edge or facing the edge as I’ve done with Anemone.

Still, that’s all a loooooong way off. A hex of a long way off.

Days gone by…

No, I’m not talking about the holiday.

I’m rather proud of myself. I took the Days Gone By hexie scrap quilt along with me in case I had some free quiet time to just stitch and listen to the birds. I didn’t think I would, but we had some rainy days, and time when the Husband wanted a snooze or to watch a movie and I didn’t.

I set myself a goal of adding another two rows. It seemed a doable quantity, and it would finish the shape off nicely. Sorry about the shot, it’s laid out on my bunk in the caravan.

I got them made! (Laid out on the Husband’s bunk this time, that’s his quilt).

Next job was to add the strip to the existing piece. And I’ve done it. The centre panel is now a decent size and shape.

I’m calling time on the hexies, and will border this quilt with squares, probably arranged as 9-patches. With individual squares at two inches finished it’ll be about right, because most of my scraps will easily produce squares of two and a half inches. Plus it’ll make an interesting contrasting border. The hexie edge will need to be appliquéd onto the 9-patch border, and that will be the last of the hand work.  However, there are still a good few hexie flowers left, but in colours which are too pastel to work well in this piece. I’ll probably turn those into cushion covers, which can either be raffled separately or as a set with the quilt.

It’s the hand stitching that has made this quilt so long winded. It’s time to turn up the dial and get something made that Days for Girls can finally raffle to raise funds. Time to start pulling out Days for Girls scraps to start assembling border blocks.

It’ll be nice to have some decent progress to show, for a change.

Anemone: I think that’s it…

I think this quilt may finally be big enough.

This was before, the way I showed you last time.

This is now, with an extra row of flowers on the right hand side. I still have to make the dotty fillers.

As you can see, I’ve taken out that dark blue flower. It was just annoying me too much.

To me, it’s now large enough. I’ll still want to make coloured fillers to go round the edge so that it’s a simple zigzag, but there are sufficient complete flowers now, in my opinion. Now for several quiet days attaching all 14 new flowers and 13 dotty fillers. For clarity, this quilt is 70 inches wide by 67 inches high, and each flower is roughly 10 inches square. Big, eh?

For the back, my current plan is to use a single fabric backing, but to face the edge all round with an outer row of black hexies so the final edge of the quilt will be the zigzag edge of the hexie flowers.

Once it’s faced, I can start the hand quilting. There’s something to keep me out of trouble for several weeks! Before I start, though, there’s still a fair bit of work to be done. Once that’s finished, I have to make a decision. What colour thread shall I use for the quilting?

I was going to enter this quilt into the quilt section at Mackay Show. That has been postponed for the foreseeable future, but once it’s on again, I should have the quilt ready.

Every lockdown has a silver lining…

Anemone: talkin’ and stitchin’

The restrictions on movement are getting tighter.

Everyone in this household is safe and well, sheltering (mostly) in place. We still have to buy groceries and medication, etc, but the Husband has sensibly said that we should not both go, one of us is enough to shop. But given that my everyday life isn’t that different, I’m not feeling restricted, trapped or stressed. I have things to do, many, many books to read, food to cook and fabric to sew. I’m OK. Where I do get stressed is in worrying about friends in danger zones, especially those already not in perfect health.

So, well, I’m cooking and reading, but mostly sewing! No big surprise there. Before, from a few days ago.

After, below. I got another long row of flowers assembled (the one on the left in the image below), and am about to sew them in. After that, I’ll cut fabric for what is likely to be the last row if it looks about right. I’m still thinking about what to do on the back. I have a variety of fabrics, but I like to make the back work with the front, so it needs a little thought. I think I’ll also face the back edge rather than straighten it off and bind it. Probably…. I also like the idea of stitching the outer edge to a straight band of fabric, so long as it works well visually. We’ll have to wait and see, even me!

Over the past couple of days I’ve enjoyed a number of conversations with blogging friends, on the phone, by Skype and on FaceTime (hello again, Anne, Dale, Sandra, Jan and Linda!). It’s such fun to put a voice and a face to your online ‘voices’, and I hope we can continue to stay in touch. It’s interesting to hear how your daily lives are affected by the pandemic, and how you’re dealing with it. I have learned things and gained ideas from talking to you all, so thank you for your time, your friendship and your warmth in reaching out to a (comparative) stranger. Anyone else up for some cheerful conversation and a lot of laughs? If so, say something in the comments 🙂

Stay home, stay safe and stay well.



I’m absolutely miserable.

My beautiful ScrapHappy project, the hexie quilt I’m hand stitching for Days for Girls, is lost. Gone.

Last weekend I worked on it at the sewing group as usual, planning new sections to be added. At the end of the session, as always, I folded and rolled it up and put it in my work basket, and carried it around the corner to where I’d parked my car. I had burned myself badly on a mug of boiling hot tea, and was distracted and in pain. I put the basket away in its usual place when I got home and dealt with the burn.

This morning, when I got the basket out, the rolled up work wasn’t there. I searched around the house, I searched the car, and concluded I’d left it at the sewing group after all. I was wrong. It wasn’t there, no-one had seen it. Everyone there knows I’m making it and would have got in touch if they’d found it.

The Husband is posting a photo on his FaceBook account and asking for information. The ladies at Days for Girls will also post about it on FB. I’m not on FB myself, so I’ll have to rely on them. Does anyone know, is there a way to see if anyone’s put up a photo of it if they found it? I’ve no idea how FB works, but if anyone has a suggestion, do get in touch.

I think probably only someone who sews or quilts would appreciate what it was worth, so my great fear is that it’s ended up in a dustbin somewhere. I asked around in the nearby shops, but no joy.

All I can do is cross my fingers, wipe my eyes, blow my nose and hope.

ScrapHappy December

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.

It’s been a very busy month, and my output of hexie flowers from the scraps generated by Days for Girls hasn’t been terribly impressive. I tell myself it’s the use of scraps, not how much you do that’s the key thing. This lot is the output, and six of those were made by someone on the DfG team.

Here’s the line up:

We now have quite a few hexie flowers, and I’ve made a bunch of black hexies to go between them, so I think for the foreseeable future I need to concentrate on joining them, or I’ll end up with buckets of flowers and a monumental task! Just to remind you, it’s a memory quilt, composed of fragments of the fabrics the sewing team has turned into the Days for Girls kits.

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 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).

Kate (me!)Gun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Nanette, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy, Debbierose, Tracy, Jill, Claire, JanKaren,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancy, Alys, Kerry, Claire, Jean, Johanna,
Joanne, Jon, HayleyDawn, Gwen and Connie

See you again, same time next month!


Here’s a lovely scrappy contribution from Margaret, who doesn’t have a blog so I’m featuring her work here. She’s made the most beautiful file cover – I’m quite envious. Click on the image to see a larger version.