Sunday, November 10, 2019

Kelly – A whole cloth quilt – Completed

Not a whole lot of quilting happened as we were blessed by our third grandchild, a little girl and we chose to spend our days visiting our daughter and the little one at the hospital.  Isn’t she sweet!

When I did quilt, however, I screwed it up majorly!  I forgot some lines when I traced the design, quilted the tiniest pearls in what should have been open spaces and then had to unpick.  Now, if you’ve never unpicked pebbles, stitched in manual mode in a figure 8, feel blessed…. To unpick these are hell itself.  Here I’ve marked where leaves should have been and I simply pebbled my way all over the space…… CRAP!!

Unpicked for what seems like forever but as hubby said this would bother me, even if no-one else noticed and then got moving to the next section. Now I’ve read about quilters using rulers with any foot but after having a slight incident costing a little more than I expected, I’ve never used my rulers without a ruler foot until now and I realised, it is not a race, go slow and still get it done without constantly changing feet.  Then I also tried my hand at stippling…. Man was this fun.  If anyone of my customers chooses to do the outlines (and not skip lines) I’ll gladly do the stippling and I am so grateful for Telene Jeffrey from Lady Jane Quilting for putting her patterns out there for us to experiment on and improve our skills.

Then first granddaughter ended up in hospital again and even though she entertains herself on her phone one doesn’t quite feel like leaving her all by herself.  So more hospital visits were needed.

Somewhere in between all of this, I finished the quilt and even posted a photo on Facebook but then brother-in-law came to visit from Namibia or rather on his way from Malawi to Namibia and we had to get the family together as we don’t get to see him too often.

It was only when I changed bedding this morning and put the quilt on my bed that I realised I’ve never finished the post about this one on my blog.  My first full bed size whole cloth.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Kelly – A whole cloth quilt – Part 1

While at the South African National Quilt Festival, I purchased two printed whole cloth patterns designed by Telene Jeffrey from LadyJane Quilting.  These can easily be downloaded as PDF patterns from her online shop but then the enlarging is left up to you.  I preferred to purchase the already printed to size patterns.

Step one was to use my light table and trace the design with a white chalk pencil onto the fabric.  Not really my idea of fun and it actually took a couple of weeks to get this done.

Knowing that this will take a while to stitch out, I initially decided to baste the whole quilt with straight lines 4” apart but I feared my chalk markings might disappear when advancing on the roll. I then decided to keep with the basting lines on all the background areas but stitch the outer lines of the main motif as I got to it.

With all the background basting done and the main motif stitched, I could zip the quilt off the frame to accommodate a customer quilt.

When I got a break in customer quilts I put the quilt back on the frame and then had to decide on a motif for the background and after toying with several ideas I decided on a simple medium-dense meandering as I didn’t want the background to take away from the centre motif.  Now this was nice to do, no rulers, no thinking just calmly going from one side to the other.

I finally got done with meandering all the background around the main motif but while having another quilter over and looking at the quilt, we noticed I’ve skipped some of my lines.  Luckily, I’ll be able to stitch these in as I start with the filler.

I changed to a smaller open toe foot for the fillers as hopefully, it will remind me to go extremely tiny when stitching.  I’ve never done a dense filling, so this will be a new experience.

I’ve decided on dense pebbling (which I only found out yesterday is called pearls) instead of stippling for the filler and this will surely take forever and a day.  So with this post, already full of pictures, I’m hoping to return with the completed quilt in….. a couple of months??

Wednesday, October 09, 2019

A quilt made by a quilters’ mom

When one of the quilters I did a quilt for, came to fetch it I noticed she had a bag in her hand and just after folding the finished quilt, she handed me another quilt made by her mom. I thought it was lovely and luckily she was not in a hurry as I then have just started with another quilt on the frame.

I am surprised at how busy I am kept since having a long arm machine.  It will only be 2 years in November and I’ve never advertised that I quilt for others but somehow our city is not that big and word of mouth travels fast.

Fun things first and friend Karin, I and our spouses attended a Botiver wine tasting evening.  It may be nothing to most but to me, rather special.  When I ordered my Q’nique (November 2017) I wanted to know as much as I could about the machine and did searches on almost every platform I could find.  

So turned out that I saw another South African lady on Facebook that owns the same.  Immediately befriended her saying I need all the help I could get.  Now one thing leads to another, phone calls, What’s App messages and heaps of e-mails and by now, apart from struggles we may encounter with a quilt or machine, we’ve become friends talking about everything else too.

BUT… we’ve never actually met.  She lives on a farm some 10 hours’ drive from us, so not really something we’d do in an afternoon or even a weekend.  Now one of the wines showcased on this evening was produced on their farm and I got to meet her husband!  Even though it was not my friend, at least I am getting a little closer.  Maybe someday.

Back to quilting.  This was a rather small quilt compared to what I normally do, so it went rather fast.

Tuesday, October 08, 2019

Angel Baby Quilt

I saw this darling little quilt on one of the quilting Facebook groups I followed but it took me a while to actually order the pattern. 

Obviously marking the background took what felt like forever and a day but finally I had the marked top on the frame, ready to quilt.

Quilted the first row of feathers and removed the blue pen markings to see the effect and it looked good.

Finished this in a weekend but in hindsight, this quilt should have been made using fabric that wrinkles less than cotton.  If I ever muster up enough courage to do another, I will keep that in mind.

This photo was taken from the designers' website and with the fabric they used it looks so much better.

Thursday, October 03, 2019

Another Mystery

This is the third quilt of this kind, done as a mystery by one of our local quilt groups that I had to do.

Fortunately, they were all done in different colours otherwise I might not have made it. It was brought to me on Monday 24 September and with it being a public holiday the Tuesday with us spending time with the kids, I didn’t get a fast start. I basically only squared the backing and got the quilt loaded before I had to continue my working week and with it almost being the end of the month, my days at the office are long and busy.  I get home rather tired from number crunching and not always in the mood to quilt.

As usual, I printed a picture, auditioned some motifs, even laid my clear plastic over the quilt to get the impression of the actual look/size and got going.

First border and one row down, I realized this is not working.  I didn’t like what I saw, didn’t think I’d like the final outcome and there and then decided to set up a date with Jack the ripper which lasted a couple of days.  Fingers aching from trying to pull and get hold of all the thread I had a couple of fewer fun days and worst of all, I simply could find anything else design-wise that was pleasing.  

Figured out that switching off is the first step, unpick and relax, get month-end done, pour some wine afterwards, take a fresh look at the printed picture and try again. The unpicking was gruelling taking 3 afternoons and all of my Saturday in 15-minute increments.  My fingers felt like they belonged to someone else.

Finally, on Sunday morning I could start quilting with the previous quilting needle marks still visible in the quilt but these should disappear in the wash. I must admit that I’ve never been this unenthusiastic about doing a quilt, not because of the quilt; I think the whole process of unpicking just got to me.

I took Monday off from quilting, invited the big kids for supper and just relaxed with the family.  We had a lovely pork roast and my fingers/hands needed a break.

I resumed quilting in all earnest on Tuesday and just when friend Karin and her hubby arrived for supper on Wednesday evening I could roll this one off the frame.