A Lovely Year of Finishes 2015 – July Plans

A Lovely Year of Finishes

I am taking part in A Lovely Year of Finishes. The idea is that during the first week of the month we make our plans for what we intend to finish, and during the last week of the month we show off our finished items.

This month I want to work on a quilt I started two years ago, as part of a quilt along. It is an ABC quilt and we received 5 block patterns each month. I was doing well and keeping up until we moved, and I had no sewing machine for several months. The blocks were put in a box and I’ve never carried on and finished them to make the quilt.

The quilt is made of 6 rows of 5 blocks. I have 20 blocks, so the first 4 rows.

This month I want to complete the next row of blocks, so the five blocks from the first month of the QAL I missed.

Cuddly Baby Quilt

A Lovely Year of Finishes

I completed my June goal! (I was #17 on the link up). And even better, it’s only the 9th – it didn’t take me as long as I was expecting.

It is a simple patchwork square design, and came together quickly as the squares are six inches once sewn together.

They are a mixture of materials –  some of the prints are cotton, the green squares are minky and the dot fabric is flannel.

I did simple straight line quilting equal distance from each side of the seams.

It is backed in the dotty flannel, and is turned and topstitched rather than being bound.

I think it looks pretty, and will make a great new baby present 🙂

 

 

 

I’m linking up with Sew Cute Tuesday over on Blossom Heart Quilts.
Sew Cute Tuesday

A Lovely Year of Finishes 2015 – June Plans

A Lovely Year of Finishes

The idea is that during the first week of the month we make our plans for what we intend to finish, and during the last week of the month we show off our finished items.

This month I want to finish a quilt kit that I got for Christmas about 3 years ago! I never got very far with it and it’s been on my ‘to finish’ pile ever since.

I’m looking forward to it being finished by the end of the month!

Patchwork Minky Playmat

This playmat has been a long time in the making! I started it last year, and every time I thought “I’ll finish it this month,” it never seemed to happen. But finally it’s done, and I’m so pleased with how it turned out!

It is made from 62 minky squares in seven different colours/prints, and one rectangle with an embroidered name.

I’m no good with random, so I organised the different colours and prints so that mostly there was the same one at either end of a row and all the rest in that row were different, and so that there was none of the same colour touching.

Cutting the squares took up quite a bit of time. Sewing the rows was fairly quick. When the top was done I thought “it’s nearly finished!” but that was in about February, so completing the top was clearly not as near the finish as I thought!

I had a large piece of minky dimple dot that I wanted to use for the back, but when I came to use it I found that it was not big enough. All of the rest of the minky pieces I had were shorter than the width of the blanket, so strips of those wasn’t an option either. I solved the dilemma by creating stripes diagonally. It makes for an interesting back panel:

Quilting two layers of minky is not at all fun! It has a mind of its own and doesn’t want to play along, but after a lot of unpicking I finally showed it who was boss! I used straight lines either sides of all the seams.

It seemed obvious to bind the blanket with minky since that’s what all the rest was made with. I can safely say that I won’t be doing that again anytime soon! Trying to sew it down by hand is very much like crocheting with furry or eyelash yarn – you can’t see what you’re doing. It took me a whole week to finish the binding.

Somebody tried to grab a hold of it before the binding was all finished because it’s all soft and snuggly:

But finally it’s finished  – hooray!

And the mini one is getting lots of use out of it. He likes to sit and play on it 🙂

 

 

I’m linking up with And Sew We Craft Together

And Sew We Craft

Hedgehog Cushion

Following the success of my Dalek cushion, I decided to also make a cushion for my brother’s birthday.

When I read about the Hazel hedgehog quilt along on gnomeangel.com is sounded like the perfect idea to use for a cushion, especially since my brother has spiky hair like a hedgehog!

Hazel Hedgehog QAL on GnomeAngel.com

 

I didn’t finish my cushion in time to link up with the QAL, but did finish it in time for his birthday.

The cushion inner is an ikea one, which is larger than a standard cushion, and just the right side to fit two hedgehogs side by side.

The pattern is the Hazel Hedgehog pattern by Elizabeth Hartman. I used shades of blue and teal with a cream background to match the sofa in my brother’s living room.

To quilt it I outlined each hedgehog, and then continued outlining at regular intervals until I reached the edge.

The cushion was a hit, and is now living on my brother’s sofa 🙂

I really enjoyed making the hedgehogs. They are easy to make and look really effective in three colours, so I may have to try making some more in the future. Maybe enough to make a hedgehog quilt!

 

 

I’m linking up with And Sew We Craft Together

And Sew We Craft

Fabric Advent Calendar

Earlier this year I went to a sewing show at the NEC, Birmingham. A day trip there and back from Scotland – lots of time spent on the train that day!

Whilst there I bought a fabric panel to make an advent calendar. My Mum has one that she made a long time ago, and I have always wanted to make one too.

There were two pieces to it. One section was the front panel, and the other contained five sections to make the rows of pockets.

Each row contains five pockets, so to make the calendar you had to fold and press and sew them down onto the front panel.

Once I got started the front was very easy to make. There was actually a lot more ironing and folding and matching up than there was actual sewing.

Once the front was finished I then needed to back it to make it a finished calendar. It suggested putting a layer of wadding in the middle to give it strength once items are put in the pockets.

So I made a quilt sandwich of the front panel, wadding and a backing piece of plain fabric, and sewed them together, adding straight lines of quilting around each rectangle of pockets.

You can see the quilting more easily on the back.

Since I’d made it like a quilt, rather than putting wrong sides together and turning and topstitching, I needed to add binding to finish the edges.

I made my own binding using a plain red fabric. It really finishes it off and makes it look good 🙂

My advent calendar is now in use, with chocolate in each of the pockets. It is still flat for now though, rather than hung on the wall.

The last step will be to add a pole to the top to hang it from. I do have the pole. It just hasn’t made it onto the calendar just yet! Never mind though, once it is finally finished it will have plenty more advents to be hung on the wall in years to come!

Modern QAL – Final Link Up

So for the last year I’ve been making a block a month for the And Sew We Craft Modern Quilt-ALong. This month was the month to finish up and sew all those blocks together.

I saw that several people had chosen to make their finished quilts 3×3 blocks big, and use the final three blocks on the back. Now there are some blocks that I like better than others, and 3×3 seemed a much easier size to handle, so I decided to go with this idea too.

Just sewing the blocks together would have been the simplest way to go. Was this what I chose? No – I decided I wanted to do the whole proper sashing between blocks. It’s my first quilt, so might as well try everything!

I also had all those bits of fabric left from making the blocks that I wanted to use up, so thought why not make the sashing up of lots of 2.5 inch squares. 160 squares cut out later – I wasn’t really so convinced of the greatness of this idea!

I then put the quilt top aside for a couple of weeks, until yesterday evening, 21st June, I thought I better have a quick check at when the deadline for entering my quilt top into the linky thing actually is.

“Linky closes in 19 hours”

Arghh!

So after some speed sewing, photographing, and typing (I currently have 15 minutes remaining) I made it – hurrah!!

Here is my finished quilt top for the Modern Blocks QAL 🙂

It’s pretty colourful with all those little squares around the outside!

The final three blocks will go on the back, and hopefully I have a fully quilted and bound quilt to share photos of soon!

Edited to add: I linked up with 6 minutes to spare – phew! You can see all the quilts that people made and shared over on ASWC.

Modern QAL – April Block

It’s April, and the final block for the Modern Blocks QAL. And I’m even caught up with posting my blocks and linking this one up on time!

April’s block is called Stacked Squares, and like all the blocks comes from this book:

I have to admit that this was not one of my favourite blocks as it has a large block of solid colour, so only uses the one colour. I think I prefer some of the others where I could use more of the range of colours I chose for the quilt, but it will be interesting to see how all the blocks look together when the quilt is fully sewn.

Here is my finished block:

 

You can see all the other blocks that people have made over on And Sew We Craft 🙂

 

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