A new quilt for the New Year and a busy year ahead!

Then pick a winner.  And stick with it.

Since I posted last, my book Quilts from the Colonies has arrived in my hot little hands…

I am so so thrilled with the result.  It is perfect in every way.  Quiltmania‘s talent in bringing all the quilts, photographs and patterns together in to one beautiful package just bowls me over.

image of Quilts from the Colonies

Seventeen projects

image of A Tisket A Tasket

a- Tisket a-Tasket

image of Sarah-Jane's Scrapbag

Sarah-Jane’s Scrapbag

The two quilts shown above are the two I will be teaching in Nantes at Pour l’amour du fil.

I’d love to have you join me in the classes so keep an eye on their website which is constantly being updated

http://pourlamourdufil.com/cours-et-ateliers/

I have managed to put the book down periodically …

and I’ve been having the loveliest time in my wee studio. Here’s what a lovely time looks like

image of studio

Enter at your own risk!

image of studio

No beautiful or glossy styling here.

But I’ve been working on a few projects simultaneously, so may my mess please be excused?

The one I’m currently working on fanatically  steadily is this one

Working title Irish Medallion

Working title Irish Medallion

 If you’ve been following along on my Instagram page you will have seen some of the progress.

Deciding on a background for the applique centre is not fast but it’s fun

Pull some possible contenders from the stash

Pull some possible contenders from the stash…

Narrow it down and stand back

Narrow it down some and stand back…

Then pick a winner.  And stick with it.

Then pick a winner. And stick with it.

I’ve completed the applique and am now spending summer evenings stitching a border of Coffin shapes, stitched using the English Paper Piecing method

ENglish Paper Piecing... very relaxing

English Paper Piecing… very relaxing

 One border done and three to go.

Happy stitching and til next

Margaret

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Christmas Catch-up

image of Quilts for Life Made with Love

I know I’ve really (really) been Missing in Action.

But this is what I’ve been doing… designing and finishing seventeen quilts for my very first book!

image of Quilts From The Colonies

Quilts from the Colonies published by Quiltmania

Quilts that once only had *working titles* now have real names;

Quilts that have been a long time in the making are finished;

And new Quilts have been designed and made…

and they have been photographed so beautifully by the Quiltmania team.

I’m yet to see ALL the finished result, BUT… I was there on photoshoot day with the gorgeous Linda from quiltsinthebarnaus.blogspot.com.au

And so I have a pretty good inkling that the styling will be stunning, as always with Quiltmania :-)

What fun we had!

Photo Shoot day

Don’t bump anything!

Quiltmania currently has a competition running on their website

(click link here to go directly to the competition)

from now until the 20th Dec

where you could win a copy of ‘Quilts from the Colonies’ and ‘Quilts for Life Made with Love’

the beautiful new book by my talented friend Judy Newman

image of Quilts for Life Made with Love

Quilts for Life Made with Love by Judy Newman. Published by Quiltmania

I am dizzy with excitement to finally see the results of my efforts.

It will be for sale on Quiltmania’s website from the 21st December.

Landed and for sale in Australia will probably be March/April.

Huge thanks to Carol and the Quiltmania team for this wonderful opportunity

Happy Stitching over the Christmas break

‘Til next

Margaret x

 

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Throwin’ a Friday arvo sickie…

image of Connecticut quilt

…cos I feel like blogging not working.

I’ve been continuing with this quilt over the last couple of months

image of WIP quilt

working title Connecticut Quilt

but before I show you how it’s evolving I want you to see how the 1800s Sunburst is looking now that all the blocks are together.

IMAGE OF Sunburst-wr-wm

working title 1800s Sunburst.

We all know what a nice feeling it is when the last bit of stitching is done on a quilt top.  And this one was no exception…that was a lot of hand pieced circular blocks!  The applique petals were very quick to do though and now it she is all ready for the quilting machine.  I’m not in a great hurry to quilt her though…I’m still mulling quilting ideas over in my head.

So back to the Connecticut quilt and when I left you last I was pondering whether the baskets would stay or go…Thank you for all your kind and encouraging comments, I really appreciated the input.

I did decide to keep them, but they needed a little *attention* so I took them off to neaten them up…

image of baskets

Off they came.

…and in true Libran style I changed my mind and they didn’t go back on.

You see I’ve always liked these little Peony blocks.

image of Peonies

Peony Blocks.

 I’m just finishing the last half dozen or so blocks at the moment and then that will be a border complete.

This is how it’s all looking so far.

image of Connecticut quilt

Connecticut Quilt take 2.

There’s still a wee way to go with it…more borders of course.  But sooo nice to be moving forward with this after a long hiatus.

Spring is in the air here and it was lovely to spend an evening in the city with my darling daughter recently…drinks, ballet, dinner.

I had fun making this photo collage of our evening.

Image of Melbourne Collage

I heart Melbourne.

thanks for visiting,

til next,

happy stitching

Margaret

Loving the Winter

image of OMG Ombre

Winter means nights in, in front of the fire.

Nights in front of the fire means hand-sewing.

BTW, thank you SBS for playing a great movie last night on the telly ~ “Walk the Line” with Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon~ I stayed up till the end and got lots o’ stitching done.

image of handpiecing

One 1800s Sunburst block finished and well on the way with another.

This is a finished block from last week

image of 1800s Sunburst Block

Admiring my handywork over breakfast LOL

And here’s how the finished blocks are looking on the design wall this morning,

image of 1800s Sunburst Blocks

I just keep telling myself “I am getting closer”.

OMG Ombre is on the quilting machine and nearly done.

image of OMG Ombre

That Prussian Blue Ombre just pops throughout the quilt.

So with the imminent finish of another quilt, I’ve been pulling things out of drawers in the studio, (there is no shortage of UFOs there) and the winner just might be…

image of WIP quilt

Connecticut Quilt

Looking back through my notes I think I started this in *Gulp* 2008 (possibly earlier) and of late I’ve had some new ideas for it.

Not least because I can’t even find my original Electric Quilt drawings for it.  I suspect they were done way back on EQ5!, on the computer that died with out a backup. (Big Lesson learnt that day).

Because I love the fabrics in this quilt so much, it really would be a shame not to continue, and hey, one has recently been reproduced which is kinda handy LOL.

I’m pondering whether to take the baskets off and begin afresh from the star.

I’ve started drawing it up anew on EQ7 so will see where it takes me.

I’m going to carry on with that for the rest of the day.

Thanks for visiting,

til soon,

Margaret :-)

Two finishes

image of OMG Ombre

I have finally completed the top of Miss Hitchens’ Whimsy, just the quilting to do now.

*Insert Happy Beaming Face*

image of Miss Hitchens' Whimsy

Miss Hitchens’ Whimsy

With MHW’s completion I got stuck into OMG Ombre…cutting the fabric for the remaining flying geese blocks.  Well when I say remaining I mean 22 of the 25 needed…I hadn’t got very far initially.

image of OMG Ombre

Ready to sew.

I spent a lovely (coldish) weekend two weekends ago sewing by the fire, using foundation piecing for speed and accuracy.

image of OMG Ombre

The pile of finished blocks getting bigger.

 By the end of the weekend I had made all the Wild Goose Chase blocks and then started playing with the alternate blocks…I needed to decide if I did or didn’t want them scrappy, did I want to add pink triangles? (cos I had a nice pink Ombre print I was dying to use)

image of Alternate Blocks

Some ombres, some checks, some florals… No pink, didn’t look right.

There was a bit of this going on periodically to make sure I was still happy…

image of Alternate Blocks

Yep, happy with that.

But the weekend was over too soon and I had to pack it away :-(

The very next weekend, out it all came again and I finshed the alternate blocks, assembled them and *even* got the border on.

More decisions to be made there of course, lol I had in my head that it would be quite a subtle pieced border…there was enough going on in the centre I thought.

image of OMG Ombre

I started out subdued but got progressively bolder.

I tried all sorts of combinations and ended up with this… Not what I had in mind at all but, hey sometimes you have to listen to what the quilt has to say.

image of OMG Ombre

More ombre, more prussian blue, more brown.

 So I have two quilts ready to machine quilt .. such a good feeling.

Hoping you are getting some productive sewing time too

til next

Happy stitching

Margaret

Progress x three

image of 1800s sunburst blocks

I’m so close to finishing Miss Hitchens’ Whimsy … I can hardly believe it.

I’ve calculated just four evenings of stitching will complete the remaining two small corner blocks.

(once I have prepared them of course)

image of Miss Hitchens' Whimsy corner

Miss Hitchens’ Whimsy corner block…two down, two to go.

And then I just need a few hours to assemble because all the border strips are sewn…

image of Miss Hitchens' Whimsy borders

Miss Hitchens’ Whimsy outer borders.

…and the centre is done.

image of Miss Hitchens' Whimsy Centre

Centre block…FULL of Broderie Perse.

It is such a *good* feeling.

So that is the first of the three quilts that are in the *Priority Pile*.

The second is the 1800s Sunburst Quilt…maybe progress is too specific a word for this.  Chugging, nay Plodding along might be more apt but I am getting there and I periodically have another finished block to admire.

image of 1800s sunburst blocks

1800s Sunburst blocks, the top left is the most recent finish

I still get a thrill out of finishing one and deciding “which one next?” At the moment I seem to be drawn to these Vermiculate style patterns.

image of 1800s Sunburst blocks

More blocks.

Once MHW is finished I’ll be able to get a bit more gung ho with these blocks.

And I’ve decided to use these Leaf Templates from Made Studio for the elipse corner applique…I’ve used these before and really like the accuracy and speed of these ready made templates.

image of Applique leaves

Made Studio Leaf Templates.

The third is my OMG Ombre (that’s the working title lol)

With the arrival of more of the fabrics I wanted I can get cracking on this (yay)

image of OMG Ombre

Prussian Blue Ombre by Pam Weeks and Eccentric print by Lisa DeBee Schiller.

I’m itching to start sewing again on this… But first I’m going to prepare those last two MHW blocks…today.

I hope you are enjoying your UFO’s too.

thanks for visiting

til next

Margaret :-)

OMG Ombre and some new patterns

Rising Sun Medallion

I’ve been enjoying working with some Ombre fabrics which have been in my stash for a wee while,

and I confess I’m still adding new ones to my shelves.

Ombre fabric, also known as a Rainbow or Fondu print, was very fashionable with quiltmakers during the 1830-1850 period.  The fabrics created shading and interest to applique quilts (think epergne vases in Baltimore Album quilts) 

On my shelves these two ombres started inching their way forward ’til they fell off, giggling and holding hands and I noticed them again.

image of Ombre fabrics

Classic (not to mention gorgeous) Ombres.

And of course then I got enthused.

image of Wild Goose Chase block

Wild Goose Chase, working title OMG Ombre

So I have a few more blocks to make…I will be alternating the Wild Goose Chase blocks with another pieced block.  Yay, a chance to use more ombres and I’m happy to have some more machine piecing to do after months of hand stitching.

 The hand stitching I’m doing is piecing my 1800s Sunburst blocks.

image of Sunburst blocks

1800s Sunburst blocks.

I am just loving the fabrics in this quilt, again I’m pulling out oldies but goodies along with newies.

image of 1800s Sunburst quilt

Marcus Bros. Aged Muslin and (in no particular order) a bounty of 1800s fashionable fabrics.

 And ombres feature here too. This pic is just from the last time it was up on the design wall and I coudn’t resist sewing four together so I could see how the applique would work as a secondary pattern.

Two recent-ish quilt finishes are

Margot

Margot, after my Mother-in-law Margot DeCamp and Margo Krager ~ whose fabrics I adore and use A LOT :-)

Margot, after my Mother-in-law Margot DeCamp and Margo Krager ~ whose fabrics I adore and use A LOT :-)

and Rising Sun Medallion

Rising Sun Medallion

Rising Sun Medallion

I’ve also finally updated my Pattern page with some new additions, I’m very excited to have some more patterns for sale.

A cup of tea and some more sewing beckons,

happy stitching 

til soon

Margaret

No way, it can’t possibly be…can it?

Keep Calm and Carry On.

Well the computer can’t lie, and I am hanging my head in embarrassment here.

I haven’t blogged for long time.

 I have been hanging out on Facebook a little bit and lately on Instagram too but it’s not quite the same is it.

https://www.facebook.com/quiltstation

http://instagram.com/margaretmew/

Shall I just get back on the horse and hope you’ll let me pick up where I left off?

Keep Calm and Carry On.

Keep Calm and Carry On.

Thank you…Ahem…shuffle of feet…I’m blogging, and it feels good.

Last time you saw my Pomegranate quilt, I was bundling up a few blocks to sew on a trip to NZ.

image of Applique prep

May 2014 Travel Prep

Look at it now!

image of Pomegranate quilt

Pomegranate quilt.

I am really pleased with the way this quilt has turned out…quite bright (clear) for me; usually I’m muddy-er and scrappy-er.

And sticking to three fabrics and a background?

LOL I couldn’t, there are a few subtle additions in the borders.

 A Hepburn Springs local

A Hepburn Springs local

I headed off to the wonderful Hepburn Springs (Daylesford, Vic.) last September with some of my LQG;

its always a special weekend with these ladies many of whom I’ve sewn with for nigh on 20 years.

Taking a morning stroll for coffee offers some lovely sights and the chance to meet a local.

Then back to the house for stitching.

I had plenty with me to choose from because I’ve started a several new quilts over the last months.

(And pulled a few UFO’s out of storage with renewed vigour)

1800s Sunburst Quit

1800s Sunburst Quilt.

 I cut out a few of these hand-pieced Sunburst blocks in readiness for retreat. I then cut some more and have since sewn all of those.

And since then have cut the rest of the blocks needed for the quilt and spend most evenings hand stitching these.

Lots of my favourite 1800s repro fabrics happening here. Blues Browns and Pinks

Lots of my favourite 1800s repro fabrics happening here. Blues Browns and Pinks.

Last count I have half the blocks sewn, but it doesn’t pay to count too often ;-)

Also during January, aka ‘My Month of Selfish Sewing’, I have started and finished a machine pieced quilt top named Lexington Road.

Lexington Road

Lexington Road

 It’s only draped over the quilting machine, I wonder if anyone will notice if ‘MMoSS’ extends for a few more days…I’d love to get it quilted!

And January sewing included getting all these cute little applique blocks together, and continuing with the quilt I’m calling Miss Hitchens’ Whimsy.

Lots of half Circles

Lots of half circles, Miss Hitchens’ Whimsy.

 I’m teaching it at The Applique Guild’s Applique Academy later this year.

see The Applique Guild of Australia‘s website for more details.

There’s been some other ‘finishes’ since we last spoke, but perhaps I’ll leave those til next time

as the neck is a tad sore from tapping at the computer, but it feels really nice to connect with you all again.

Thank you for taking an interest in what I get up to, I do enjoy sharing it.

til next

Margaret

Autumn Sewing

image of Autumn Leaves
image of Autumn Leaves

Beautiful autumn foliage.

Autumn is nearly over… it is my most favourite time of year. Central Victoria is just gorgeous during autumn and this morning when DH and I drove in to Castlemaine to grab a few supplies I enjoyed seeing the poplar trees in a blaze of yellow.  The photo above was taken here at Quilt Station this morning, it’s one of the fruit trees we grow along the platform.

I’m heading over to New Zealand in just under two weeks time for a two week stay so when I get back it will be ‘officially’ Winter.

I’ve been ticking things off the ‘to do’ list and most aren’t even blog worthy, certainly not photo worthy.

eg. Making bags for the quilts I’ll be entering in the Victorian Quilters Showcase next month.

Sewing bindings, hanging sleeves and labels.

Re-doing the piping and binding on the Maltaville Quilt (never was happy with it…that’s what happens when I rush)

I’ve also made a start on pattern writing for my two newest quilts, ok at a pinch this could be photo worthy ;)

image of Pattern writing

Newest pattern 'Margot'

It’s for this quilt which you’ve seen in progress…this is a bad photo, I haven’t had a chance to hang it up and do it properly for the cover yet.

image of Margot

Margot ~ named after two very special Margo(t)s.

I ummed and ahhed over the name for this quilt, I came up with many names and then discarded them.  But then Margot popped in to my head.  The fabric in the border is by Margo Krager… I could wax lyrical about her fabrics but I will just say “I adore them”. And Margot (with a t) is my Mother-in-law’s name. It just seemed right to go with the name but MK drew the short straw with the spelling and Margot the MiL won.

Speaking of Margo Krager though, oh my look at what I have found on recent on-line and in-store shopping…

image of repro fabrics

Margo Krager Dargates ...plus others.

 I was thrilled to find The Wild Rose Quilt Shop  which still stocks repro fabrics from long ago, many  thanks to Dorothy for telling me about them as I found all of the above except the pink ombre which I found locally.

Margo’s Dargate Indigoes, plus that pink which is a Dargate Divinity c 1830, will give me something to play with in this longterm project.

image of Scherenschnitte blocks

Scherenschnitte blocks using Margo Krager's Dargate Indigos patt #20266 for Windham.

 A girl needs plenty of fabric to keep her options open LOL but seriously I think that Pink Ombre is going to get me moving on this quilt as I had been a little ‘stuck’ with it.  I’m assuming the pink is a very early design of Margo’s as it’s not by Windham but by Clothworks.  The shop I bought it from does stock ‘older’ fabrics.  I should write to Margo and ask her.

But I do need to keep chipping away at this before getting engrossed in the above.

image of Pomegranate quilt

Pomegranate quilt

However, I have already got a little sidetracked and am doing the Benjamin Biggs quilt which is generously being offered by Gay Bomers and Brenda Papadakis through Just Takes 2

I had a false start as I thought I would make it in ALL Smithsonian fabric, just an assortment of all colours really.

Here’s my first block

image of Benjamin Biggs block oneThen I changed my mind, and decided to stick with the more traditional (and original  colours) of Red and Green. I am adding a hint of  Cheddar in the corners and elsewhere if the block agrees LOL.

Of course I am behind already but here’s blocks one through three, I also changed the Apple Pie Ridge block (the Scherenschnitte one) to a different version.

image of Benjamin Biggs blocks

Benjamin Biggs Blocks one, two and three.

I’ve also prepped block five to take to NZ with me, I used Freezer Paper underneath as I can sew on the plane that way…no scissors necessary.

iamge of Benjamin Biggs block 5

Benjamin Biggs block five.

I would normally do this type of Scherenscnitte or paper cut block using the back basting method, I hope the feel of the freezeer paper underneath won’t be a nuisance this time.

Block number four is printed off but that’s all, let’s not get in to that ;-)

Well it’s nearly dark outside and I’ll venture back to the house, so glad I made a big pot of chicken and veggie soup for lunch as that will do for dinner too.  I have sewing to do while watching telly tonight, ‘that dishy Martin Shaw’ as he’s known in our house is on in Inspector George Gently.

happy stitching

til soon

Margaret

Step One…make a mess. Step Two…make it bigger!

image of table mess

I’ll just reorganise my stash a little better

I don’t even know what prompted the thought that popped in to my head, other than I had about an hour or so to spare while waiting for DH ~ we were heading off for a couple of days R & R. Also I had just bought a new light-box and didn’t have anywhere to put it so maybe these two events merged into the need to make better use of space, I dunno.

Anyway within a very short time this was what I was looking at.

image of table mess

The table was covered in fabric, and tubs!! Why did I get tubs out when I hadn't finished the shelves?

image of floor mess

And the floor!! It looks like I've been burgled.

Now I know I’m impulsive, 50+ years on this earth have taught me that much about myself but…Really! I needed someone to shout STOP/WAIT/PLAN. Those are skills I need to work on.

And that’s the mess that was there when DH and I left and when we came back.

image of Man on a boat

I decided to change the fabrics into groupings of how I would USE them and that they ought to be more in styles & eras rather than colours (although in my shelves there are still some piles of colours, that’s just the way some are selected)

Here’s the work in progress, across the top row are categories Turkey Reds, Overdyed Greens, Indigoes, Cheddars, Prussian Blues and Madders ~ I guess Double or Cinnamon Pinks could also go in here but I don’t have enough to pinks to warrant a separate pile, nor space.  For me it’s easy to find any pink in the pink pile.

image of fabric sorting

I make no apologies for the labels, I just love labelling things LOL

The second row gets more interesting.  Florals late 18th to mid 19th c made sense to me, so in here I have florals of all scales but they must be of that era.  I have another pile of florals that have a picotage ground as it helped to keep the piles more manageable. Ombres, Serpentine, Vermiculate & Eccentrics, Fine Stripes and Ribbon Prints make up this row.

 I also had eight tubs which took all those bits of fabric which are too small to go on the shelves and they were in colours, so when I was looking for a piece of red I would up-end the tub and rummage through the pieces from iddy biddy bits to fat 1/16 size just to make a berry.

Eureka! A berry tub, add leaves and make it for all those bits that are too small to do anything else with…or would just make great berries :-)

image of Berries and leaves fabric

Berries and Leaves fabrics.. all colours cos berries don't have to be red and leaves don't have to be green.

I did the same for other fabric pieces and thought about how I would use it rather than its colour.

image of fabric tubs

I freed up some space for quilt projects which had been creeping across the floor.

 I re-rolled as many tubes of fabric on to half bolts as I could, the tubes did look great leaning against the wall but I found that they were a pain to cut and put back…for me if it’s not easy to put away, it probably doesn’t get put away. Embarrassment much.

image of Jo Morton Fabric

Jo Morton for Andover # 4902 isn't it gorgeous

And now the whole room is all tidy and organised and it feels great.

I finished another quilt top, gotta love that.

image of Variable Star Quilt

No title... yet.

image of centre block

A design idea that came...and went.

As an aside…Lisa you may remember that fabric in the centre…you sent that to me a while back :-) So this quilt reminds me of our friendship x

image of repro quilt

Ready for the quilting.

And in one last bit of news… it’s been a little bit ssshhh until now… but I can finally show you what I, Irene Blanck and Jennifer Murray have been working on for many months.

image of Amelie quilt

Amelie, the Victorian Quilters Inc. 2014 raffle Quilt.

It was a great honour to be asked to design and make a quilt for our State Quilting Guild and we are just so pleased with the result…we hope it sells lots of tickets.  Apart from the four seams to join the blocks, and adding the border the entire top is by hand! Lots of applique and English Paper Piecing…techniques the three of us love.

Oh what the heck.. a couple more close ups!!You’re doing well to still be reading, what’s another minute ;)

image of Amelie Quilt

Amelie close-up, very pleased with the quilting.

image of Amelie Quilt

Sorry it’s such a long blog post, I just had so much I wanted to tell you.

happy stitching

until next

Margaret