Monday, January 30, 2012

A job half done

I have been so slack with my blog writing.  My life feels like a bit of a blur the last month.  Just this last week I've signed up to be a consultant for The Body Shop at Home.  It feels a bit crazy to do that before I can drive, but I discussed it with hubby and he's happy to drive me around for a while.  Plus it means that I'll actually be able to afford driving lessons!  Learning to drive actually isn't too far away (I hope).  I was driving a few years ago and nearly got my license, but haven't driven for two years.  We have an auto now which makes it sooo much easier!

As for the sewing, since this is a craft blog....

I had decided I wanted to make a quilt for a friend, then whilst cleaning up my sewing room in preparation for the guests earlier this month, I found this pattern I'd bought a good while ago at a craft show.
It's called Le Fleur Rouge, but I can't link to them because their website doesn't appear to work any more.

I wanted to make it more black and less white, which an asian feel.  I headed to Patchwork with Gail B in Bayswater, and with the help of a friend, selected all my fabrics.

I set to work straight away and was able to finish the embroidery in record time because my mum bought me a 'headlight' to do my sewing by night.  I have been dreaming of a 'daylight' lamp for night sewing, but my mum's solution was a lot cheaper.  She got me a camping headlight, which she uses all the time when they go camping.
This particular model isn't the best for hand sewing, as the smallest angle you can tilt the light down is still too far away from my body, but we fixed that with an off-cut of quilt batting wedged behind the strap.

So once the embroidery was done, I cut up all my squares and over a night and a day sewing sessions, I did this:
When I was cutting out my little squares, I started to feel unsure about my fabric choice.  The patterns seemed too busy, the colours weren't quite right, the asian feel got lost (one of the fabrics is red with asian writing in black).  Luckily, now that I step back and see it as a whole, I'm happy with it.  I do suffer a lot of 'can't see the forest for the trees'.

Since taking that photo yesterday, I have tonight attached the borders, which are mostly black.  Tomorrow I'm heading out to buy the batting, and to find something for the backing.  Not quite sure what I want to do yet, and it will depend on what is available since I want to buy it tomorrow and am only going to one store.  I was considering using something 'cosy' like flannel or even polar fleece, but not sure how the quality of the fabric will mix with the batting and quilting cotton.  Guess I'll see what takes my fancy tomorrow.

I'm hoping to have it finished in the next week or two.  And of course I have yet to decide how to quilt it.  I am considering some sashiko-style quilting in white crochet cotton, since it is an asian-inspired quilt, but I guess we'll see how I feel about it once it's sandwiched.

Other than the above, I haven't done any other sewing.  I'm behind in my Hexie flowers, and I haven't made any more progress on Birdie Stitches of Civil War blocks, but once this is finished I'll get back on that path.


  1. Well congratulations on working toward your goal, Karen! I'm here cheering you on!
    Your quilt is really stunning, I love it in the colors you used. I'm working with those same colors right now! I think sashiko stitching would be awesome - you can always pull it out if you don't like it. Beautiful!

  2. Your quilt is looking great Karen. The red stitching on the black looks fantastic.

  3. Hi, Karen. Very interesting quilt. I particularly like the red on black and your choice of border fabrics. Quite distinctive!
    best, nadia

  4. Lovely red/black quilt! The alternating squares in the sashing are just right.



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