Thursday, 20 April 2017

TGIFF: Finally a Friday Finish!

Welcome to Thank Goodness It's Finished Friday!  I'm Ruth and here on my blog there are lots of WIP's and not so many finishes, so it's probably not surprising that this is my first time hosting TGIFF. I am very excited to share a finish and celebrate all of yours at the link up below!  Thanks to Fiona for giving me the opportunity to host the party today!

For some reason, as soon as I have pieced a quilt top, it gets done in my head, for at least a little while.  Very rarely, do I go from finished quilt top to finished quilt.  I made this sampler quilt top last year, for a class I was giving the Cork branch of the Irish Patchwork Society, and only now, almost a year later, is it finished!

I'm entering it into an upcoming exhibition called Fun, with the Modern Quilters Ireland group, due for submission on the 27th, so not only is it finished but it's finished early.  Double celebrations!

I must admit, it took a tad longer that I expected to quilt it.  About 4 days doing wiggly daisies, loops, 8's, E's and O's and Lori Kennedy inspired rows of houses!

 What I really like about getting this one finished is, it has spurred me on to getting another one done!

These are some of the same blocks just with a different colour treatment and I am pondering how to quilt them.  I don't want to do the same again so maybe an all over something or other?  Any ideas?

But for the moment it's celebration time and time to bask in the glow of Friday Finishes!

Now it is your turn to link up so we can all celebrate your finishes this week.   Please share the fun and click on the links to visit your fellow linkers and leave a comment - it will be very much appreciated!   Add a link or the button to your post so that your readers can join us in the Friday Fun too.

Friday, 14 April 2017

The Not A Finish Friday Post!

It may seem quiet around here but there has been lots going on in the background.  I've been working hard on so many things my head is starting to spin! So here's a quick recap!

I've been designing a little bit again and working on a block for a North, South, East and West project due on the 30th. I have a love/hate relationship with paper piecing.  I love the intricacy you can get and the sharp points but I always find a stage in the process where it's like there is no end in sight and I just have to grit my teeth and just get on with it!

 I really struggle getting the pieces to match up perfectly and then there's the paper ripping out bit...  Yes there are Twix wrappers in there.  Eating chocolate helps make the pieces line up! 

But at then end, there is a block you couldn't have made any other way!  I still have the middle to do yet but am relieved to have the biggest bit of the block done finally!  These are hand dyed fabrics I've had since a workshop three years ago on a gradient fabric by Vanessa Christenson.  The yellow seems a bit overwhelming in this amount but at least it will attract attention if it gets picked for exhibition!  This is the bottom of the quilt.  There is another block yet to be made!

I have also discovered that I have a love/hate relationship with EQ7.

It just doesn't suit my way of designing.   I appreciate that it's main strength is in blocks and layouts but I like a blank canvas and like to crop and copy and paste and play with scale.  I found trying to make the paper piecing template for this block so frustrating - no idea why it can't snap to things the way I want the lines to - probably me doing something wrong!   In the end I had to print it and re-mark the colours and hope it worked.  Thankfully it did, mostly!

I've also been working on finishing 2 quilts for the Modern Quilter's Ireland 2nd Exhibition, called Fun and am so glad its a long weekend to get time to get closer to getting them done.  I hope to have at least 1 to share next Friday as I am subbing in for Fiona on TGIFF (Thank Goodness It's Finished Friday) so come back next week to see all the link ups!

Crazy hearts by Claire Lynch
In the background, I have been working on tons of things for the Irish Patchwork Society and getting ready to teach the Eastern Branch my Ticker Tape Pictorial Quilts and the Rainbow Rose quilts in Dublin in 2 weeks time.  Very excited about it!

Especially as I got my Rainbow Rose quilt back from Tomomi  and can't stop looking at it. 

Please pop over to Slaney Handcraft to see the amazing quilting she has done, my words cannot do it justice and it is really worth reading Tomomi's thoughts on the quilting.  I cannot wait to share lots of photos when I get it blocked and bound but for the moment here's a close up of my favourite bit  - our puppy, Maggie, is quilted into it!

Speaking of the dogs we have had a rough month of it!  Charly swelled up after her evening walk with an allergic reaction (we think to a bite) and emergency phone call #1 to vet.  Thankfully with anti-histamines (mine from the cupboard) she recovered very quickly.

Wilbur ate a box of firelighters containing Kerosene and emergency phone call #2 to the vet!  I had to work from home last Friday to monitor him and get activated charcoal into him (10 times the amount of what he had eaten).  He was not a happy camper (frowny face above) and all I could smell for days was firelighters!  Still both are grand now and Maggie has her play pals back!  The vet must think we are the worst owners ever!

Feels like as soon as April is over, I'm going to take May off and enjoy the exhibitions and catch up with the new blogger blog hop, that is going on at Quilting Jet Girl, She Can Quilt and Cooking up Quilts!

Thursday, 30 March 2017

Finishes - Clocks to Cosmic colour!

So while I was in Cork, the Limerick Quilt Centre were down too with their pop up shop for the Southern branch's meeting.  And you would think that being a regular customer I would have no need of anything but I succumbed to impulse and bought a fabric clock making kit!

A few years ago I bought the lampshade kit in the same range (haven't used it yet!) but thought I'd get the clock kit out and up and running.  It was really easy to use and I love how it looks with this Karavan print from Valorie Wells.  Can I call this a Friday finish?  Is that cheating?

One thing I can definitely claim as milestone reached is my Rainbow Rose quilt top.  I finally made a decision on the applique and went all Orla Kiely inspired on the corners.  It's now with being quilted by Tomomi@Slaney Handcraft.  I asked her to give it the Tomomi Treatment and you should have a look at the beautiful quilting that is being done here on instagram.  Awed as always by Tomomi's quilting!

Lastly, the deadline for Aurora, a co-exhibition between the Irish Patchwork Society and the Northern Ireland Patchwork Guild, is this Friday so I had to get a move on to get my quilt done.

Inspired by the colours that digital cameras can pick up that we don't see ourselves, I tried to pick a vibrant selection of yellow greens, mint blue, magenta, reds and berry colours to symbolise the Aurora Borealis against a starry or city at night sky. 

Circular quilting to depict our planets motion and wavy quilting in straight lines for the light that we see.

It's now all bound and labelled and just needs a hanging sleeve!  To see the amazing quilts Tomomi and Lena from Quilt Arts did check out these links here and here.  They are incredible and I hope my simple quilt is hung right at the other end of the gallery!  It's going to be a fun and very colourful exhibition and I am really looking forward to seeing their quilts up close in real life.  They will be on display in Dublin in May and in Lisburn after that.  Might have to visit twice!

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Fun with scraps - ticker tape pictorial quilts

Just over 2 weeks ago, I had the privilege of teaching a ticker tape class in the Cork branch of the Irish Patchwork Society.  We looked at examples of Quilt-As-You-Go and joining blocks but spent the most of a beautiful sunny afternoon playing with scraps making pictorial ticker tape quilts from scraps.

In addition to redesigning Wilbur, I had prepared a class sample showing the technique of a guitar and brought with me templates of shapes I thought peoeple might like, as not everyone is lucky enough to have their joy of Basset Hound pups, taking up all the sofa space in the house!

As it is quilt as you go and involves basting and messing about with scraps of all colours, quite a few people took to the floor!  Some decided to make a Rose...

One musical lady tried out my guitar...

There was a dolphin...

And yes one or two Basset's!

Quite a bit of progress was made on the day.  I love this very Bohemian looking guitar.

And Joanna's original circles design for a baby quilt.

Lastly a new puppy!  Assumpta was so speedy in getting this little guy filled in.

Thank you ladies for a brilliant afternoon and I hope you had as much fun as I did!  I love visiting the Southern branch and hope to be back again sometime soon!

Friday, 17 March 2017

Happy St Patrick's Day!

This month in Modern Irish Bee, Erin asked us to make a tri-colour Washington star in the colours of the Irish Flag.  This is as far as I've gotten today!

I have to leave this for now and come back to it later as we spend the day with mum, watching the Limerick parade, quick visit to the pub and then home to mum's for dinner.   I thought it would make a nice photo to wish everyone a happy St. Patrick's.  Hope you enjoy the day!

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

WIP Wednesday - the colourful ones!

In between getting ready for our Modern Irish Quilters Sewing Day this past weekend, I have been preparing samples for a Quilt-As-You-Go class showing the ticker tape process and using scraps to make a wall hanging like Wilbur and QAYG panels like this version of a pattern by Stitched in Color called Bottled Rainbows

Rachel's pattern uses 16 rectangles to make up the quilt.  I'm using 9 bigger square blocks measuring 20" square.  I don't have as much variety in my scraps to get panels of both orange and tangerine so I've tried to come up with 9 colours I think work well together and pick scraps that live in that colour family that go well together.

Not having that many yellow scraps I've included some gold and browns.

I'm hoping this will be a handy quilt to use for teaching the colour wheel for the Rainbow Rose quilt in April too and I like it's bright and happy feel.   Hard to resist a rainbow!

The other project I'm working on is for Aurora, a co-exhibition between the Irish Patchwork Society and the Northern Ireland Patchwork Guild.  Inspired by these photos by Mike Taylor which shows how digital cameras are capturing intense colours when photographing the Aurora Borealis, I tried to pull fabrics from my stash that matched that intensity.

To give it a bit more impact I've made Dresden blades by resizing templates from Aneela Hooeys Bloom pattern. 

 I'm really liking this colour combo against the dark blue background fabric.

And while I've been so busy Maggie has been in chewing mode so I've had to keep the dogs far from my end of the kitchen where I sew.  She has quite a few toys but still manages to eat what she shouldn't.

I normally have Charly beside me while I work and Wilbur finds the comfiest spot to snooze on but if Charly is with me Maggie wants to be too and gets bored, poor pup. So in fairness I have them all barred from the sewing space and Charly is not one bit impressed. 

Can't blame her, Maggie destroyed her bed while I was out at our Modern Quilters Sewing Day and its G's fault as he had a nice lie in and left them to their own devices!  Just as well the daylight is getting longer as we need to walk the legs off the pup and do more training with her to get rid of some of that excess energy.  Busy, busy weeks ahead.

I was thinking of making Charly her own dog bed but I might just wait a while yet!
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