Floribunda: the last one

Here we are, then.

This is the last one, I promise. Front, complete with binding. I’m rather proud that I’ve managed to keep 90% of the points intact around the outside, an object achieved by sewing the binding first to the back, and then hand-stitching it down on the front so I could micro-adjust the line of the edge to stay clear of the points.

This quilt has been a hard one to photograph nicely. In shade, the colours go dull and dingy. In the sun, they tend to bleach out. You need the human eye to successfully appreciate the colours, the contrasts and the subtleties of the fabrics used.

I’ve added corner pockets and a central hanging pocket on the top edge of the back. I may ultimately remove those before I send the quilt to my niece, since I don’t believe she’s planning to hang it, but then again, they’re not in the way. And the corner pockets came in handy for my human quilt display stand during photography.

The label is a bit more prosaic than usual, since the Show required contact information, which I don’t normally need to add. I won’t show it here, as it gives my phone number, and spammers abound.

I doubt there will be any Show ribbons, but you never know. I’ll be sure to let you know in the event there’s anything to brag about!

And now, a short break for mending, and then on with the next thing.

Floribunda: all together now

All the blocks are now joined.

Rather than bore you with yet another photo of the front (I’m sure you must be a bit sick of it by now!), I thought you might like to see the back, which is all new. Do click on the image to get a closer view.

I didn’t have quite enough of the yellow bird fabric to make the whole backing, but I’ve picked out colours from the bird print for the corner blocks, and I quite like how it looks. I also really love the orange sashing, which has a delicate gold dot spiral print and occasionally catches the light in an interesting way.

I’ll be binding the quilt in the background green, which will tie in with the front sashing and will look pretty with the yellow on the back. I’ll also have to add hanging pockets at the top edge so that it can be hung at the Mackay Show, and it’ll also need a label. So those have to be added before I bind it. The good thing is that I have plenty of time, as the quilt doesn’t have to be submitted until Friday.

I’ve loved making this quilt, but I’m rather looking forward to getting a few other things done once the pressure is off. There’ll be one more post, I think, to show the finished item, and then I’ll be free to start – or perhaps finish – another project!

Another day or two, I think, and it’ll be done.

Floribunda #17: Blocks 29 and 30

The last two blocks are done.

They’re the bottom left and right corners of the quilt front, and I really like them, particularly the first one!

This is currently the final layout for the front. I won’t be starting to join anything for a while yet, as I’ll be cutting backing and batting and sashing, so if you see any obvious issues with this layout, tell me what you think. I don’t promise to change it, but I’ll certainly take notice.

Remember the fabric I bought for the quilt backing?  I was afraid there wouldn’t be enough. I was right, but it’s not as bad as I thought. I only need to make 4 blocks for the back, one for each corner. I’ll use fabrics in black & white, yellow, orange and orange-rust, to pick up the colours of the fabric. I don’t know what pattern I’ll be using yet, but it needs to be simple, because of both time and how the quilting and assembly works.

I actually have a fair bit of the batiks left. Maybe enough to make myself something pretty as a reminder of a fun and colourful project.

The next couple of days are going to be a bit busy 🙂

Floribunda #15: Blocks 21-23

Yes, the patchwork machine is lurching back into action.

After my recent unscheduled short break for some assorted Covid-vaccine side effects, I’m back at the machine. I treated myself to a good tidy-up on my work table (nothing too drastic, I do have ‘creative muddle’ to maintain after all) so that I could actually find a few things I needed, and the result is another 3 blocks in swift succession.

These are the start of the next row, and one (the top one) for the row below. On the same row there will also be three pink ones, but that’s for another day. I’m giving myself till mid-May to finish the front, to the end of 3rd week in May for the sandwiching and quilting, and to the end of May for assembly. The quilt has to be entered for the Mackay Show on 4th June. No pressure, then. But as we all know, I do get my skates on best when I have a deadline. I will, however, forgive myself if I miss it, since I’ll also be entering the Hatbox Quilt which didn’t go in last year because the Show was cancelled.

Watch this space for a blur of batik!

Floribunda: two thirds of the top

The Floribunda bug bit me again.

As you can see, I’ve now completed Nos. 18-20 of the Floribunda blocks and am two-thirds of the way through. Another 5 green blocks, 3 pink blocks and 2 purple blocks, and she’ll be done.

I keep tweaking the location of the individual blocks as I turn more out, since sometimes a new one just doesn’t ‘fit’ where there’s a gap. This is the latest layout, and so far, I’m quite happy with it, but naturally I’m not letting the gaps drive the colours and fabrics used in the blocks, so it won’t be the last version by any means!

Of course, after that, there’s the back and the sashing to consider. I shall have to see what’s left of both pink and green and the colours in between. What will work for sashing to complement the orange batik I had planned, and what will work with the yellow print for the back?

Only time will tell. Watch this space.

Heaven for Beginners #4: All done – and Finish #4!

I’ve been plugging away at the assembly, to some effect.

The Husband’s fingers just visible. Too much rain for outdoor photography…

It’s all together. Actually, doing it in small amounts, in many sessions is quite effective. It’s repetitive work, not terribly interesting, but requiring you to be meticulous and careful. You get bored quickly, so doing it a bit at a time means you don’t burn out and start getting careless. Work for an hour, go and do something else. Work for another hour, read your book… that sort of thing.

So, here is the completed ‘Heaven for Beginners‘ quilt*, ready for the lovely Caitlyn to take to uni. I hope it keeps her cosy and comfortable, provides napping and sleepover opportunities for friends and family, and gives years of cuddly service.

As I did on the Hatbox Quilt, I’ve made a ‘hidden’ label you can flip over to read. Not very hidden, given the fabric’s different from the rest of the backing, but still… I did a wash-test sample first, to make sure the archival-ink pen and tear-away stabiliser I wrote on will survive the washing process. All good.

Thank you again to all the F2F members who contributed blocks to last year’s session. As you can see, your hard work was not wasted!

Now, on with the next thing 🙂

 

*For the background to this name, see my earlier post.

Heaven for Beginners #3: 30% done

It’s moved on a bit since last time.

I have all the blocks quilted. I also have a third of them trimmed out and joined together. Most of the joining strips are cut, just a few more needed. Do you know, I think I might make it in time after all…

Of course, it helps that I’ve now done so many of these that I don’t really have to think, and measure and calculate. I know I have enough fabric; I know what sizes the strips need to be; I know the best order in which to join it all up. I think, too, that the quilt will be large and cosy enough as it is, without my needing to add a border around the outside. Which is another time saving, of course.

Only one small downside of all this progress: there won’t be any Bee, Myself and I sewing this month.

But that’s a small price to pay, I think.

Heaven for Beginners #2: quilting half done

Halfway there with the quilting.

It’s the Australia Day long weekend, and my LQS is closed. Which is a bit of a drama, as I ran out of thread, spray starch and 505 basting spray all at the same time. I managed to get the thread and a small (non-economical) bottle of the Best Press spray starch elsewhere, but the 505 spray baste is only available there. I still have a bit of an inferior product only kept for emergencies (which I think this now is!), so I’ll have to use that up, but after that, I’m at a standstill until tomorrow, which is very frustrating. I have only myself to blame, of course, for not watching my supplies!

Having said that, I’m pleased with how the quilting’s going. I’ve set myself a stupid deadline – of course – and am now aiming to have it ready by 8th February, as the niece for whom it’s intended is leaving for uni on 9th February. I’m not positive I’ll make it, lots of other stuff on, but I’m going to give it a darn good try. I still have to add a hand-width border around the outside of the whole thing, and then bind it. No pressure…

Meanwhile, the rain is falling outside and it’s a perfect day to spend quilting!

Heaven for Beginners #1: Quilting begun

I’ve made a start.

Line 1 of 6 is sandwiched and quilted, and I’m happy with the effect. Just the usual wiggly line, but I was extra vigilant with the spray basting, the blocks are nice and flat and pucker-free, and I like the fabric I have for the backing.

I’m happy with the block layout now – a few changes since the last time I showed it, but I prefer the balance and colour progression I have now. I’m still debating the border around the outside. I think it might need one to bring the size up a bit, but adding a border in QAYG has its own technical difficulties. I’ll see how it goes.

We went out for a drive with Mouse yesterday, and had tea and scones at the Old Station Teahouse near Cape Hillsborough. I think I’ve mentioned this place before; it’s an old wooden station building, set in the middle of gorgeous tropical gardens, and among other tasty delights, their home-made scones and raspberry preserves are magnificent.

Is that my puppacino coming…?

They welcome dogs in the garden seating area, and no sooner did Mouse arrive than he was being fussed and admired and petted. Eventually, we humans were able to place our order. Mouse was not, of course, allowed any scones, but he did get his car quilt to lie on, a puppacino was ordered for him (frothed lactose-free milk), and one of the ladies brought him some doggie treats they keep for their canine guests. No, not spoiled at all….

A reminder that we are about to begin F2F once again, for the 5th year running (see my previous post). If you’re thinking about joining in, do get in touch with a comment or email me directly if you received the email I sent out about it.

Time for some more cutting. I need purple backing squares…