Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Workshop for Buttons

My Church runs a craft group called Buttons on Wednesday mornings during term time.  A couple of weeks ago I was asked to run a workshop on "Decorated Hand Towels".

That's a pretty wide topic.  And as there are supplies in the storage cupboard I wanted to provide some samples that might make use of them.

The first couple were made with a border fabric and lace edges.  It was using up a few scraps, and I quite like that one on the right.

Lots of the ladies like to hand piece, so the next two are simple hand stitched ones.  The one on the left is an appliqued heart with some lace and a ribbon, and the one on the right a little hexie flower. 

Here is the appliqued one close up.

Another project we have worked on at Buttons is little bears and kittens to give as a special gift when a child is baptised in our church.  I took my machine along to the group and we had a production line going.  I then took home some of the blanketing we used and made up this little kitty:
The idea this year has been to make use of our crafty skills to raise money for the church.  We had a morning tea last week, with about 60 people attending and our little stall raised $1,000 which we donated to the building fund.  (Our church has embarked upon a building project to build us a lovely new church).  We are all feeling rather chuffed at that and everything we have made over the year has sold.
All three of my grand daughters came by for afternoon tea recently.  The eldest came straight from school on the bus and brought a cake she had made in Food Tech.  Isn't it just great?  We didn't eat it of course 'cos she had to show it to her family!

Til next time.....Keep on stitching

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

New Toys for Quilting

In recent weeks I have bought a few new toys to play with for my DSM.  First up I bought some Westalee Rulers.

Do I know how to use them?  Nope!  I have been intrigued by the concept for a while and then saw a demo at the Sydney Quilt Show a while back.  I was sold.  Above is the Basic Set you get when you by the foot attachment for your machine.  What they didn't tell me is that my Bernina needs a special attachment for the foot attachment.  So it took a while for that to materialise.
At the same time as I bought the rulers, I bought a slippy mat which adheres to the bed of the sewing machine table and the slippery surface eliminates the drag when you are free-motion quilting.  The product is called "Sew Slip II".  It is totally removable and doesn't leave a sticky residue on your sewing surface. You store it rolled up so it doesn't take up much room.
I bought both the rulers and the mat at the same time as the rulers from Punch with Judy but they are available all over the place,
When my Bernina attachment finally arrived, I set everything up to have a play with my new rulers.
It all got a bit wonky at the end, but overall I was relatively pleased with the first attempt.  Here it is warts and all.

I need a LOT more practise.  LOL
I needed to quilt my "Green & Blue Should Never be Seen" quilt.  (You might remember I showed you that one under construction here).
So I put aside the rulers and took out the other new toy I have.  This is a weighted ring that you use to help keep the sewing area flat while quilting.  I bought that on my trip to the Newcastle show a month or so back.

When it was demoed the lady said I needed to hold my thumbs in like so, as I'm quilting.

I struggled with the hoop.  Basically I think the problem was that I was quilting a fairly large design.  It would probably work better if you were doing denser quilting.  Bottom line is that the jury is still out on that one.  I stopped using it after a while and just went back to my bad habits.
Anyways, this quilt was stitched in the ditch to anchor the blocks, and free motion quilted in a free hand orange peel design.  I use that design a lot and quite like the results.  These are some of the better orange peels. LOL

So.  All done and dusted, and it has gone to Stitching Hearts already.

An altogether happy little quilt which came together nicely.  And we found the best backing for it!  It will do to keep someone's knees from freezing.

Til next time.....Keep on stitching.