Wednesday 30 December 2020

2020 - My quilting year in review

Wow! What a year that was!

My 2020 finishes

At the end of each year I like to look back on the goals I set myself at the start of the year.  This year my goals were:

1.  to move away from English Paper Piecing to hand piecing with a running stitch
2.  to find a method of applique that suits me.

I've done well on my first goal of improving my hand piecing.  I even made some videos about hand piecing and put them on YouTube.  You can find them here

And as for my second goal, I've found a method of applique that suits me, but I just don't enjoy applique as much as I enjoy piecing at the moment.  Maybe I'll enjoy applique more as I spend more time on it in 2021.

Now it's time to check progress on each of the quilts I said I'd work on in 2020.  

1.  Ballet with Kaffe Fassett by Willyne Hammerstein from Millefiori Quilts 2.
See the tab at the top of my blog for all the details on this quilt (or click here).  

It's still not finished, but it's basted and ready to be hand quilted.  It's high on the priority list.  

2.  Glitter by Jen Kingwell
It's finished! And I won Best Hand Piecing for it at Capital Quilters Exhibition.  You can read more here. 

3.  Cartwheel by Liza Prior Lucy for Kaffe Fassett Collective Quilt Grandeur book.  
Also finished, and now called "You Spin Me Round".  

4.  Green Diamonds
This is my own way to use up some of the diamonds I cut at the Kaffe Fassett class in January 2018.  I'm experiment with lots of different hand quilting designs, so this little quilt is still a work in progress. It's nice to have something easy to take with me when I go to stitching days. 

5.  Neptune and the Mermaid - pattern is Pieces of the Past by Wendy Whellum
This was so much fun to make (click here to read more).  I've hand quilted about half of it. 

6.   Cross Country by Anna Maria Horner
I started this quilt in a class with Anna Maria Horner  in November 2019 (click here to read more).  I now have the fabrics to finish it, but I need to decide if I want to add applique in the big triangles. (That's carpet you're seeing in this photo.)

7.  Don't Leaf Me by Wendy Williams
I've made a little start, but there's still a long way to go with this one. I haven't had much experience with needle turn applique, so I'm going to use this quilt to improve my skills. You can read more here.  

8.  Endless Summer by Anna Maria Horner
Started and finished during the COVID-19 lockdown.  I've now called my quilt Endless Lockdown, because it felt like it at the time.  

9.  Stars Upon Stars by Edyta Sitar
I'm still admiring this pattern, and I will start it one day.  

10.  Something new from Millefiori Quilts 4
There are so many beautiful quilts in this book, and can you believe Willyne is currently working on quilts for book 5!  

11. We Built This City (was Marshal by Jen Kingwell - the Quiltmania mystery quilt). 
I took a wild departure and made something new with half of the blocks from the Marshal Mystery quilt.  You can read more about it here.  I entered this quilt into Capital Quilters exhibition in October 2020 and I won two prizes for it.  

12.  Wedding Quilt
And, I've finished the wedding quilt for some friends who got married in October. You can read more about this quilt here

So that's 5 out of 12 quilts finished in 2020.  I'm happy with that.  Most of my quilts take more than a year to make, so I think finishing 5 of my WIPS is quite good.

Did I start anything new? Of course I did.  How could I resist the #sayyestokaffecollective challenge.  I started, and finished, Turkish Coffee from Quilts in Burano. 

13. Turkish Coffee

So, I finished 6 quilts in 2020 and I'm very happy with that. 

Be sure to check back in early January when I'll list my quilting priorities for 2021.  

Friday 25 December 2020

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas everyone.  I hope you have a lovely Christmas Day with friends and family.  I know Christmas will be quite different this year for many of you, but I still hope that you have a special day.  

We'll be with my family at my parents' house in Auckland, so that will be nice.    

Here's yet another photo of my Gingerbread Village (details here).  There's no Gingerbread Flower Shop yet, but there will be by next Christmas in 2021.  I've finished the front and one roof panel. 

Merry Christmas to you all - and thank you to all my loyal followers who continue to read my blog, follow me on Instagram and Facebook.  Your support is what keeps me posting.  

Now it's time for the Peacock Party.  Feel free to link up a recent blog post below.  

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Sunday 20 December 2020

Turkish Coffee #sayyestokaffecollective

Each year I eagerly await the release of the next Kaffe Fassett book.  This year their book was photographed in Burano, Italy, and all of the quilts look gorgeous in the colourful seaside town.  

My version of Turkish Coffee

As I flicked through the book I saw lots of pretty quilts in soft pastel colours, but the one that really grabbed my attention was the last one - Turkish Coffee, in rich, dark colours, designed by Liza Prior Lucy.  It was so different to anything I'd made to date, so I decided that Turkish Coffee would be my first quilt from Quilts in Burano. 

I used the feature fabric, Turkish Delight, in the same black colourway, but I changed just about every other fabric.  I know Kaffe and Brandon encourage people to make their quilts their own, and not strive to replicate every fabric used in the patterns.  

I went to my local quilt shop, Busy Bee Quilting in Wellington, New Zealand, to see what they had in stock.  They had Millefiori in Orange, so that became my background, rather than Millefiori in Antique which is used in the pattern.  I preferred the orange anyway, because it's brighter.  

I framed my blocks with Ferns in Black, and then just used a wide variety of dark fabrics for all the checkerboard blocks.   Some of these fabrics are from my stash, and and some are from the latest release as shown above. 

When it came to the backing, I knew I wanted a Kaffe wide back.  I had two options, but I chose Mandala in Red and I love it.  I'll use the other one for something else.  

My Turkish Coffee quilt was quilted by Sue Burnett of Busy Bee Quilting in Wellington.  She did a fantastic job of custom quilting the large flowers, and then used a pantograph on the other blocks. 

People have asked me about the border - I used a thin border of Zig Zag in Gold by Brandon, and then Busy Lizzy in Black from Feb 2020.  And I used Roman Glass in Gold for the binding.  So this quilt is made from 100% Kaffe Fassett Collective fabrics.

Finished size is 86" x 86" (218cm x 218cm) - so it's BIG.  

Free Spirit Fabrics have been running a competition called #sayyestokaffecollective, so I'm entering this quilt into the online competition.  The prizes are more fabric, and we can all use more fabric. 

There are so many beautiful quilts in Quilts in Burano.  I encourage you to buy the book, even if you only look at the pictures and dream of a holiday in Italy.  

I'll close with one more photo of the quilt taken this morning. (Yes, the trees are green - it's Summer in New Zealand. )


Friday 18 December 2020

It's Christmas Time

My work is finished for another year, and I'm looking forward to some quality quilting time.  Long, warm summer evenings, and lots of sport on TV - that combination makes for great stitching time.  

I've got so many things on the go at present, so I really hope I can finish some of them before the end of January. 

I thought I'd show you some of my previous Christmas quilts today.  Of course it's summer here in New Zealand, so we don't need Christmas quilts on our beds.  Instead we tend to make wall hangings and smaller decorative quilts.  

1.  First up is Oh! Christmas Tree by Wendy Williams.  I love wool felt applique, and when I saw this pattern I knew it was just right for me.  It really does represent Christmas down under.  The flowers are bright and the birds are happy.  

The thing I like most about my version of this quilt is that I found the perfect background with snowflakes, and I hand quilted them to make them stand out.  

You can read more here.  

2. Second is Flocks by Night - another pattern by Wendy Williams.  I love the little sheep on the hills, and all the lights on the trees.  You can't see it in these photos, but I used a sparkly thread to hand quilt the night sky.  

You can read more about this one here.  

3.  Holiday Patchwork Forest by Amy Smart.  These trees started out as test blocks made from scraps! But then I thought that they looked OK, so I carried on and made a quilt from scraps.  Of course the Kaffe Fassett Millefiori on the border wasn't a scrap, but it was in my stash and it finishes this quilt perfectly.  

This quilt shows that you don't need Christmas fabrics to make a Christmas quilt - as long as it's red or green shaped like a tree, people will think it's a Christmas quilt.  

You can read more here.  

4.  Finally, my Holiday Homies quilt made from my own design to show off Tula Pink's special Christmas range, Holiday Homies.  

I'm not usually one for cutesie prints, but those dogs in jumpers really appealed to me.  

This small quilt works as a wall hanging or as a throw over the glory box in the hall. 

So that's a quick look at some of my Christmas quilts.  Feel free to link up any recent or Christmas posts below.  I know this time of the year will be frantic for some of you, so I don't mind if you just link up a post with your favourite Christmas quilt.  

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Friday 11 December 2020

Aotearoa Quilters Lime challenge

If I write it here, I have to do it, right?  

Aotearoa Quilters have another colour challenge on at the moment.  This time it's Lime, and it's one of my favourite colours.  

Whenever I see the colour challenge quilts displayed together, I always wish that I'd entered.  So this time I'm going to make it happen.  

I've only entered twice before - the silver challenge for the 25th anniversary (where the shape was a hexagon), and the yellow challenge.

Yellow in 2016

Green in 2015

Orange in 2017

Pink in 2019 - Weekend Drive by Shirley Sparks

by Dianne Dowd

These gorgeous pictorial quilts are well outside my comfort zone, but I'll just do my thing and make something lime.  I'm not aiming to win a prize, just to have my little quilt up on a wall of lime quilts.  The dimensions this time are 12" x 16" so that will be different.  The conditions of entry are here. 

Now it's time for the Peacock Party.  What have you been up to this week?  Feel free to share a recent blog post below.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter