Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Playing catch up..... Grand Illusion Mystery Quilt Post #4

I got a little behind with the piecing but I finished up all of clue #3.  Instead of continuing with clue #4, I decided to go back and finish up those chevron type blocks from clue #2....that feels good!

Now, tomorrow I feel like I can move forwards and finish up another clue before Bonnie reveals clue 6 on Friday, I may still be one clue behind but that's OK, I might get another clue done on New Years Day, who knows?

Linking this post with Bonnie's Monday Link Up .....

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Feeling a bit like Christmas

I have some very trusting Clients, I often get quilt tops in the post and have simple instructions to choose light custom or freemotion all over or digitised designs. These two quilts came down from Edinburgh in the post.

This quilt has modern Christmas fabric charm squares. The outer white frame I quilted with 'molar feathers', the middle white frame has ' molar feathers and the occasional holly leaf and the middle white frame has holly leaves and curls, I practice my freemotion quilting with a little drawing to get me going....
I'm linking this post up with Bonnie Hunter's Christmas quilt linky party 2014 at Quiltville

Merry Christmas from Scotland

Although not strictly a Christmas quilt this quilt with coneflowers is in a lovely, cosy flannel fabric, I chose a digitised daisy design that had the look of coneflowers. The backing was pieced in quarters and although I will tell my clients that I can't guarantee to get it perfectly centred, I was secretly thrilled that it was perfect with very little effort....that doesn't always happen!

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Daisy's Stonefield!

'Wow, you are an International Quilter now', I was told by a friend recently.

Well, I had to tell her that I've been International for a while, I've quilted for clients in France, Belgium, Southern Ireland, Ireland and (can you believe) Colorado, USA. Now I can add the Netherlands to that list too!

I recently shipped a quilt back to Holland, this is the story of 'Daisy's Stonefield!'

I first met Coriene and and her mother Dicky on the first day of the show at Festival of Quilts, Birmingham 2014 when they came to the APQS longarm stand to try out one of our longarm machines. They came back on day two and were excited to realise that they had already viewed and photographed my quilting hanging in the show. On day three it had been decided that they would ask me to quilt their Stonefields quilt!

Daisy's Stonefield was started in April 2014 when their dog Daisy, a longtime family member died, Coriene started the quilt to take her minds off the loss. The pattern designer for Stonefields is Susan Smith, a quilter from Australia. The original quilt was made to be used as a prop in an upcoming Irish film.

This quilt top was sent from Holland, in the Netherlands by courier and arrived here in Scotland on 21st October. I was in awe of all the beautiful fabrics, piecing and applique, I couldn't believe that this quilt top wasn't a lifetimes work and had only taken 4/5 months to complete, It's all hand pieced and appliqued to! I wondered how or what I could do to make it any better? As a longarm quilter I like to think I can add to the overall effect, I wasn't sure there was anything left I could add.

Some of the rulers used
My brief was to quilt lightly in the blocks and more densely in the border but basically to do my best for the quilt.

I thought about it for a while and procrastinated for another while before loading the quilt top. Daisy's Stonefields was on the frame for around three weeks. Firstly I did all of the stitch in the ditch work to stabilise the blocks, then quilted the flying geese break border and then the blocks working methodically from block one, row one, through all eleven rows. All of the blocks are different although there are duplicates, the fabrics are not the same, no two blocks are alike so I quilted every block with a different quilting design. Some blocks needed minimal quilting, in some of the simpler blocks there was more space so while quilting one block I looked and planned what I would quilt on the next block.

When all 121 blocks were quilted it was time to start on those 12 inch borders. Any longarm quilter will tell you that borders as wide as this will often have problems. As all of those hexagon flowers (I counted 165) have been strategically placed on the border fabric, the fullness had to be contained where it was, believe me this is a very well pieced quilt, this was not a huge problem but did need care.

I was pleased to be able to densely quilt the background while outlining all of those flowers, so I just worked my way around each of those borders, one border a day carefully gathering in the fabric as I went...  each border took one whole 8 hour day, then it was finished.

Details, Daisy's Stonefield 96 x 96" many different fabrics, wonderfully fussy cut with a French General backing fabric, Superior So Fine 402 quilting thread, wool wadding supplied by Coriene. All freemotion hand guided with ruler work.

The top border and the start
The bottom border and the end
The pattern for this Stonefields quilt is available as a block of the month, (well, 10 blocks per month for 10 months) from Coriene at Amaryllis Lifestyle with International shipping available, you can buy as a pattern with templates signing up for 10 months. Coriene also has a blog at  Curl House Quilts , these two websites are in Dutch but Google will translate with some amazingly funny results sometimes???
Now here are some photos of this amazing quilt.......

Fantastic fussy cutting....

And look just there, can you see an empty red 'goose' just waiting for Coriene to add my initials.....
My favourite block....so sweet.....

Some quilts you just don't want to send home......but how sweet to know Coriene and Dicky were thrilled with the quilting, how wonderful to receive a personal gift of blue Delph ware mugs by Blond of Amsterdam with cute little delph clogs attached and a packet of Hopjes, a coffee flavoured traditional Dutch candy.....

Thank you Coriene and Dicky for trusting me to see and quilt this future family heirloom, it's fabulous!

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Grand Illusion Mystery Quilt Post #3

I had good intentions this last week, but only managed to make 35 chevron blocks....but onwards and upwards. Bonnie posted clue #3 last Friday so Monday I cut all of the fabrics for this clue and strip pieced enough (8 strips) to make up 20 blocks...only another 100 to go, then I'll go back to clue #2 and work on those other 65 chevrons....well, in the rule of thirds, I've past the first third mark, that's a threshold I stepped over so working to the next threshold should be easy.....right???

And yes, I know my colours are a little different, it's my quilt!

On a good note I did finish up all of my promised Client quilts today and moved on to a special Christmas gift quilt, it may take me the rest of this week to finish this one and it needs binding before gifting too. Did I say I have yet to write Christmas cards or wrap gifts....better get organised!

Linking this post to Grand Illusion Mystery Quilt Monday link up

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Grand Illusion Mystery Quilt Post #2

Clue # 2 was released on Friday, Bonnie gave 3 options to receive the same outcome. I tried all three techniques and even a fourth using post it notes.

Bonnie's third option is to me the most consistent and we all know that Bonnie likes to keep bonus triangles so this is obviously the technique she uses.

So, trying out the different techniques took a little more time but it's best to make up test blocks to ensure your blocks turn out the correct size and your points aren't cut off, those points are suppose to meet in the middle, point to point. I now have all of my squares marked to follow option three and will work my way through this clue over the next few evenings.

16 blocks done 84 to go....this block makes up a pretty good design all on it's own.....

Catching up on 'quiltcam' while piecing....

I'm linking this post to Bonnie's GIMQ Monday linky over on http://quiltville.blogspot.co.uk/2014/12/mystery-monday-link-up-part-2.html