Wednesday 27 August 2014

WIP Wednesday: Back to the Penny Sampler!

So the Triangle top is finally finished and I was very good!  I didn't put it away like I normally do and flit to something else.  I made a quilt back out of this Tula Pink 5m fabric, from the Foxfields collection, that I bought here on Craftsy.  I really love this colour and the pattern is adorable.  So I pin basted it last Friday and it's ready to be quilted.

 Not quite in the quilting zone of mind just yet and facing a mostly empty design wall, I had the choice of piecing more London arrows or cracking on with Fat Quarter Fizz with an Oriental twist or hand sewing down some binding (my least favourite part of the quilting process!).  Of course the butterfly effect hit again and I didn't do any of that but decided instead to revisit my UFO's (unfinished objects!) 

I was feeling a little guilty that kids are back to school this week and summer is practically over and I haven't done that well on finishes for this quarter's Finish-A-Long.

I've got about 5 1/2 weeks to bust that list, (triangle being one I'm pretty much assured on) so I pulled out my Penny Sampler quilt from last year designed by Rachel from Stitched in Color. It's been on my list all year!

Maybe it was the trip to the zoo on my few days off last week with my little cousins, or maybe the chilly nights starting to draw in that prompted me to pull this one out.

I'm going for a wintery feel with this and not having finished it last year (Halloween sewing got in the way!) I'd really like to have the quilt top at least put together.  I'm very tempted to try hand quilting quite a bit of this one!

This was a project taught as part of a 3 month class on Applique, precise 1/4" piecing and Paper Piecing.  The design of the quilt is really different using a sampler approach to teach the three skills but also a broken border approach to contain the blocks which I really, really like!

There is a large outer border of diamonds that wraps around the quilt.  It's broken up by the inner border of crosses and a long filler block to showcase a favourite fabric. 1" squares are dotted about for a third broken border!

There are quite a few blocks and a lot of design elements to this one and I got as far as the applique and precise piecing last year.  So this week, I've been trying to catch up on the paper pieced blocks and some of those borders!

I think my favourite might just be the flower pot.  I did have a few problems joining the centre section on this one.  It's not quite as flat as it could be and I'll be attacking it with steam when it's sewn into the quilt top!  The coffee pot was easy and looks really big an dramatic in the quilt.  Kona Seafoam was used to try and balance the long hanging diamonds on the left as it is dominating the quilt at the moment,  and I need to balance it a bit better.  It is a really lovely shade though especially with the Kona Snow and Charcoal.  So I'll have to add a bit to the bottom diamond row to pull the eye away from the left a bit.  My new design wall makes these decisions so much easier and if I was to make this again I'd probably not put so much Seafoam in one place!

Of course this project being from last year, I had managed to lose the tea cup pattern that goes with the coffee pot!  There was an option to pay a few more dollars for an ebook at the end of the course which I didn't opt for, so I decided to try and make up a cup pattern in the style of Rachel's myself! 

Last month I bought EQ7 andrunning it on my Mac I had a few hiccups over a corrupted user but the support team at EQ7 were brilliant helping me get it sorted.  So Saturday, having the whole afternoon to myself and a working computer I gave it a go!  I have a new found respect for paper piecing designers! 

I spent ages trying to get the handle right so that the pattern would print in easy to put together sections.  EQ7 helps and gives you a warning saying that you have an inside corner - doesn't tell you where though!  In the end after much messing about, 2 cups of tea and quite a few rich tea biscuits I had an aha! moment.  
I opened the block library and searched for cups! Yes I know, I'm a dope!  I didn't find a cup but a basket handle which was perfect and I copied that.  The trick is to think in planes and straight lines.  Rachel's cup handle is a bit more rounded and much more elegant but I'm happy I got there in the end!  EQ7 gives you a blue outline when all is well, so nice to see after 3hrs messing around!

Of course when I printed the first one I forgot to hit reverse! So I now have two cups, facing in different directions!  That's ok too! It's my version of the quilt after all!

The last paper pieced block is this one called the Dala Horse - this horse is the reason I wanted to make this quilt in the first place.  When I saw him, I knew I had to make him and signed up straight away.  He's almost the last block in the whole quilt though so you have to work up to him!

Rachel has a new class on offer starting next week and there are still places left.  It's called angled and walks you through 5 quilt designs using triangles, diamonds and flying geese.  I've signed up (hoping to piece 1 of the 5 designs!) so will really have to get a move on to get the bottom row of diamonds done,  one more horse pieced, sketch stitch in the horse faces and assemble all these blocks together!  Luckily very few need sashing and I'm really looking forward to the assembly bit!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly PiecedLinking up toSew Fresh Quilts


  1. I think it's great that you designed your own tea cup for the quilt top! It looks great, and the Dala horse is super cute. :) Oh, and congratulations on making so much progress on the triangle quilt.

  2. Replies
    1. Thanks Lisa! Feels great to see it all coming together at last!

  3. Ruth, your triangle top is great - I love the combination of fabrics!
    Oh gosh that Penny Sampler is amazing - each block is an awesome work in itself! That Dala horse is definitely the one that would draw me over too. I will be watching with excitement to see where you take this quilt from here!

  4. PS - I forgot to say that I love the tea cup you designed and especially that you used musical fabric!

  5. Beautiful work! I enjoyed reading this, your Penny Sampler looks amazing! I have never made blocks like these and I am very tempted to try...Thanks for showing this beauty!

  6. I hope you're not going to pin through any of those bunnies! Love the quilt top, I think it looks great. How did you enjoy the class? I'd be tempted to take the Curves class if she runs it again

  7. That's a very nice pattern. So different. Noce chice of fabrics too!

  8. I'm so pleased you are doing the Penny Sampler again - I can
    t wait to see this one finished. I've almost bought the pattern myself a few times after seeing that gorgeous horse ... might still :)

  9. Your Penny Sampler is gorgeous so far. I joined and never even got started! Can't wait to see it all finished :)

  10. That is an amazing quilt, so much work going in to it too. I love the split borders they are definitely not for the fainthearted :)

  11. I love your triangle top, and the backing is great too. Your wip looks fiendishly complicated, for some with good numerical skills I think!

  12. I love your teapot! I tackled Rachel's Penny Sampler last year, too -- your labor of love will be well worth it in the end. Alas, I don't have time to do the Angled class, but I'll be cheering you on from the sidelines. : )

  13. I love the horse block it is too cute!!! I'm not keen on samplers, but this one looks pretty cool.

  14. I love your Penny Sampler - if she offers that again I really would love to make it - all the finished quilts I have seen are beautiful. A lovely friend has gifted me the Angled class so I will 'see' you there :-) I too am aiming for one quilt too - just haven't decided which one!

  15. I've always liked the Penny Sampler when I've seen it though I'm not up to all that paper piecing! :D


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