Sunday, 25 September 2016

A Picture for Sunday - Rocky Shore


If ever I had a lucky photo, it is this one.  It was taken on our last morning in Kerry, before driving back to County Wicklow.  The wind was blowing so hard that I am amazed I kept the camera still, and having the horizon level with the high tide line is pure fluke.

Thursday, 22 September 2016

Free Motion Mavericks - Week 107 - Bit by Bit...


Still working on attaching the sample pieces, using my favourite Quilt As You Go method.  I am testing a slight change in the method, but need to attach a few more pieces before I can be sure it is consistently better. 


This latest piece I have joined has got a few artistic tucks.  Not ideal, but I'm not going to fret over them.  Sewing has had to take a slide down my list of priorities over the summer, but I am hoping to get back into the groove over the next month or so.



blogbutton photo peacockfmq025_zpse5bceb10.jpg



Here goes for week 107...


The project in Week 108 that caught my eye was Janice's shadow block mini quilt - full of loads of things that went wrong and even more that went right.  If you haven't seen her blog post yet, nip over now and see more photos.




If you love free motion quilting, whether you are a beginner just taking the plunge, or you have reached the stage where you can do ostrich feathers with your eyes shut and still achieve perfect symmetry, then please link up.

Remember, FMQ is FMQ, whether your machine was made last week, or it is older than your granny.

Here are the very easy and slightly elastic rules:-

1.  Link up with any recent post, ideally from the last week but within the last month, which features a free motion quilting project, whether it is a work in progress or a finish.

2.  Link back to this post in your own post and/or grab the linky button for your blog's sidebar.
  
3.  Visit as many of the other participants as possible and say hello in the comments box.

4.  The link up will remain open for four days, from midnight to midnight GMT for the long weekend, Friday to Monday.


So far quilters from the USA, England, Wales, Australia, Canada, Germany, Holland, New Zealand, France, Macau, Russia and Ireland have taken part.  The first participant from each new country will get a special mention the following week.

Thursday, 15 September 2016

Free Motion Mavericks - Week 106 - Turning Neutral


Unusually restrained colours - I don't usually go for neutrals, but when I laid out all my practice pieces out together last week I rather liked the effect, and now I have joined the first two pieces, I think this project might start growing on me.


The dinky pale brown check blends in really well.  It's a shame that I haven't got enough for the binding.  Or have I?  I shall find out soon enough.



blogbutton photo peacockfmq025_zpse5bceb10.jpg



Here goes for week 106...


The project in Week 105 that caught my eye was Olena's amazing magnolias.  The colours are beautiful, and the quilting adds so much interest in the background.  If you haven't seen her blog post yet, nip over now and see more photos.


curve pieced quilt


If you love free motion quilting, whether you are a beginner just taking the plunge, or you have reached the stage where you can do ostrich feathers with your eyes shut and still achieve perfect symmetry, then please link up.

Remember, FMQ is FMQ, whether your machine was made last week, or it is older than your granny.

Here are the very easy and slightly elastic rules:-

1.  Link up with any recent post, ideally from the last week but within the last month, which features a free motion quilting project, whether it is a work in progress or a finish.

2.  Link back to this post in your own post and/or grab the linky button for your blog's sidebar.
  
3.  Visit as many of the other participants as possible and say hello in the comments box.

4.  The link up will remain open for four days, from midnight to midnight GMT for the long weekend, Friday to Monday.


So far quilters from the USA, England, Wales, Australia, Canada, Germany, Holland, New Zealand, France, Macau, Russia and Ireland have taken part.  The first participant from each new country will get a special mention the following week.

Sunday, 11 September 2016

A Picture for Sunday - The End of August


One of my favourite views within a minute's walk of our house, and one of the reasons that most of my stitched landscapes have a church tower somewhere in the distance.

Thursday, 8 September 2016

Free Motion Mavericks - Week 105 - Planning


Putting labels on panels - that's the sum total of my work quilting projects this week.  Not much, but an important step nonetheless.  These pieces have been stuffed in a bag in the sewing room for far too long.  It is time they were made into something, and it's not going to be anything special, perhaps just for slobbing around on the settee.


blogbutton photo peacockfmq025_zpse5bceb10.jpg



Here goes for week 105...


The project in Week 104 that caught my eye was JanineMarie's wedding gift quilt - absolutely gorgeous! If you haven't seen her blog post yet, nip over now and see more photos.




If you love free motion quilting, whether you are a beginner just taking the plunge, or you have reached the stage where you can do ostrich feathers with your eyes shut and still achieve perfect symmetry, then please link up.

Remember, FMQ is FMQ, whether your machine was made last week, or it is older than your granny.

Here are the very easy and slightly elastic rules:-

1.  Link up with any recent post, ideally from the last week but within the last month, which features a free motion quilting project, whether it is a work in progress or a finish.

2.  Link back to this post in your own post and/or grab the linky button for your blog's sidebar.
  
3.  Visit as many of the other participants as possible and say hello in the comments box.

4.  The link up will remain open for four days, from midnight to midnight GMT for the long weekend, Friday to Monday.


So far quilters from the USA, England, Wales, Australia, Canada, Germany, Holland, New Zealand, France, Macau, Russia and Ireland have taken part.  The first participant from each new country will get a special mention the following week.

Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Accurate Darts


Until now I have made garments with four or six darts. Bad enough.  Now that I am making a fitted and lined dress for my daughter I am hitting an all time record:-

4 tiny neck darts
2 bust darts
4 waist darts in the bodice
4 waist darts in the skirt

So, fourteen darts in the dress and the same number in the lining.  Twenty eight!  I didn't realise I was such a sucker for punishment.

Because it is important to get darts straight and exactly right size so each pair are an exact match, I am making tracings on tissue paper and using them as guides.

The first picture shows the pattern piece for the back of the skirt.  There is a central back seam, so I have cut two mirror image pieces for the garment.   To the left of the picture is the guide I have traced, with the central fold line of the dart on the left and the stitching line on the right.  Because I am making four of these darts in total, two on the dress and two on the lining, I have pinned three more strips of tissue underneath the top one so I can make all four guides at once. 


Next, with no cotton in the machine and the longest stitch setting, I stitch along the stitching line to make a perforated line.  It is important not to separate the four strips from each other at this stage, and the perforations help to bond the strips together. 


Then the guide has to have a clean straight edge cut along the dart fold line for the whole length of the paper strips.


Here is the top strip laid over the dart on the pattern to show how well it duplicates the shape.  The three guides underneath have no pencil lines, just the perforated line.  When using the guides, this perforated line is all I need, but the dots could be highlighted by a pencil line drawn over them if necessary. 


To mark the end of the dart on the actual skirt, I put a pin through the material and then iron the fold to the top.


The paper guide can then be pinned on, with cut edge flush with the ironed fold and the tapered point is lined up with the pin.


Now I can sew over the paper along the perforated line.


Here is the dart with the guide still in place...


... and now with the paper removed.  It is surprising how strong the paper is and if pulled against the stitching it can actually tug at the thread.  To prevent this I hold the paper and fabric on either side of the stitching and gently stretch the fabric.  The fabric has a certain amount of give and the paper hasn't, so it tears and comes away at the stitching.


When it comes to sewing the dart on the other side of the skirt, I can be sure that I will have two nicely matching darts.  Here they are, laid side by side.


To secure the threads at the end of the dart I tie a couple of knots...


... thread the tails inside the fold of the dart...


...pull them slightly and snip them and lose them inside.  This way I can be sure that the stitching will not come undone and I have a neat finish.


Finally, a close up of the dart that ended up in the middle of a pineapple - no nasty bubble, and no juice running either. 

Linking up with Connie's blog Freemotion by the River for Linky Tuesday

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