Friday, 31 May 2013

I did it!!!

I'm officially out there!

I have opened my shop and have just finished uploading my first set of patterns.  I present to you the first part of my Greek Candy Pops range:
Available on NZ$6.00 each
At the moment, each of those three cushions are available individually.  I am just finishing up the fine details on a pattern that is the full set.

I also have a sofa throw to match that I am working on at the moment, and when that is done, it will be available as well as part of a bundle with a bonus forth cushion pattern that won't be for sale individually.

So these were going to be in the royal blue/white colour combination of traditional greek tile mosaics from which they were inspired, but I like my brights too much! And when I stumbled on the polka dot brights jelly-roll at my local spotlight store my colour decisions were made for me. These are really great patterns for using up left-over strips from a jelly-roll you love or raid your scrap bin for a more shabby-chic look.

Sneak peak of the sofa throw to come:
Just a wee bit of the sofa throw
Now these do have a pile of little teeny tiny squares, but there is an awesome shhh secret squirrel method included in the patterns that keeps them all in order and keeps all your seams nice and straight.

So in short:  SQUEEE!

Time to have a much needed glass of wine then start quilting the throw.

Friday, 24 May 2013

Combining my two loves...

Quilting and random geekery!

I've been playing with ideas about combining fabric/dressmaking with glow in the dark threads and paints for a while.  I have a lot of ideas that one day I plan to get out of my head and into a WOW (World of Wearable art) creation.  In the meantime, I have stumbled across awesomeness on instructables:
Now this wall quilt combines conductive thread and all sorts of neat tricks.  Stuff trying to stitch wires to the back of your work, this stuff goes straight through the machine! YUSS!!!  

Now I will give kncjdavis all the kudos in the world for the mad creativity for figuring this stuff out.  But I hate to say it, the quilt itself is a wee bit beginner-level for me.  So, no photos to post yet, but I have a new wall-hanging for Christmas now on my projects to start list.

In other news I have 3 of the four cushion samples completed thanks to the wonderful blisters, and I'm working through the sofa throw for my first set of patterns!  I hope to have the patterns available for sale very very soon.  
Sneaky peeky

And if you look closely there is a little hint for the likely theme for my next set in there.  I'm about 1/4 done for the sofa throw and the last cushion is being made by another friend.

 Helper #2 is posing beside my stack of QAYG blocks for my Saturday Stitchy ladies quilt.  Now to hack them apart and stick them back together again!

If I ever get a creative block and need some more inspiration, I don't need to look any further than any piece of paper my enabler has been at.  He is a visual person as well and doodles all the time.  I have to actually sit and make an effort, he just absent-mindedly comes out with some really cool intricate sketches.  Check out his shopping list:

There are several designs on the front and back of that I am seriously considering stealing!

Luff luff


Tuesday, 14 May 2013

I am very excited here.  I am *this* close to having my first set of quilt patterns completed and ready for sale.  Over the next couple of weeks, the samples will have been finished by the lovely people testing out my patterns for me, I'll get the photography for the patterns completed and get my Etsy store open. 

This is big for me, and comes on the back of the honour of having my Steamy Dreams quilt published in issue #83 of NZ Quilter magazine.

It is also REALLY scary putting yourself out there like this for the first time.  But at least the feedback I've had so far is that my patterns are cute!

Stay tuned....

Monday, 6 May 2013

Progress report for May

I know it has only been a couple of weeks since my last progress report, but I'm determined to make a habit of tracking this.  It gives me a big kick up the bum to make the effort to do something each week, no matter how small.

Finishes (1)
Mustard Mayhem!  It is done!  One and a half years after HH gave me the challenge, I have finished it.  And despite how sick of the sight of mustard yellow I was by the end of it, I love love love it.
Mustard Mayhem. Needle-turn hand applique, machine quilted

Mustard Mayhem back view

 WIPs (5)

Libby's blanket. Binding made and ready to sew on.  That's it. I have three weeks until LD's birthday and I'll have it finished in plenty of time for that.

Colour me dotty. No progress. This one has suffered a bit from not being constantly at hand as it has been cleared away to make room for the work I've been doing on other projects.  This one is a longer term project anyway.

Table dreams. Have started filling in the centre gaps. This is still up on my hallway wall to walk past every day.  Now that I've managed a big finish, I can spend some more time piecing rather than just quilting.

QAYG lap quilt with my stitchy Saturday ladies (no name yet).  8 of 24 squares quilted and trimmed. I have cut one of the squares, but the template I was given by one of the ladies has some of the curves a bit uneven.  I need to remake it before I do any more cutting.

Saturday Stitchers Quilt-As-You-Go

2013 Guild challenge. Resized the Karen Wishart pattern "Christmas Celebrations" to fit our size requirements. Fused the top and bias.  Have to make more bias for the outside edge.

Busy button-holing away...

New Projects (2)

A touch of Greece.  My first set of patterns!  I have got off my butt and actually drafted and written the instructions for my first set of patterns.  These will eventually be for sale on here.  Now I need to make samples and my sister has kindly agreed to be guinea pig to test the instructions for me.  Aren't the colours cute?

Looking into the possibility of using electrically conductive thread in some of my art quilts.  This is still an idea that is percolating so I'll have some more updates later.  Got to move more of those WIPs into Finishes first!

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Why do you create?

What is it that drives you as an artist?

Do you enjoy the accolades from friends and family?  Have to do SOMETHING with the stuff you collect? Have to get the ideas out of your head before you go crazy?

Well those are my three anyway (in reverse order).  It is well known in my social group that if I don't do something creative every couple of days, I start to go a little twitchy.  If I leave it longer I start getting a bit silly on it and come up with backwards Wednesday where we eat dinner on a picnic rug on the floor with our clothes on backwards and food in glasses and drinking out of bowls... Give it a week and I get frustrated that I cant just DROPEVERYTHINGANDWRAPTHATTREEINPINKANDORANGESTRIPEDDOILLIES!

Deep breath.

And this is my my enabler will gently steer me in the direction of the sewing table as needed.


So about a year and a half ago, one of the ladies in my regular sewing circle challenged me to make a Baltimore Album styled quilt.  She had a lovely William Morris machine applique quilt she was planning on making and we decided to have a bit of a race. 

So I started researching block patterns for what was going to be my lovely baltimore.  I had high hopes.  I adore baltimores.  One of the ladies in my quilt guild does exquisite ones like this:
Fyvie's Baltimore Album VIII at the 2012 Stonestead outdoor quilt festival
Then I realised that all of those carefully chosen and beautifully balanced colours one that lovely clean white background would drive me nuts - and be expensive as I don't have a lot of those "traditional" fabrics just lying around.  So I bought some mustard yellow background fabric, assembled a mix of cross blocks from a lovely book (cant find the name of it right now, will update later) and tradition blocks I'd drafted and got out my scrap bins. If the piece was big enough to fit then that was my patch.  Blow trying to plan colours!

One year later:
Mustard Madness several blocks quilted
I quilted each block individually and then sashed them together:

And almost finished!  I'm on the final stretch.  I can't wait to get this finished and some outdoor shots to show the colour properly.

Yay! Binding!