Monday, 22 June 2015

Quiltmaking by Hand

It often happens that as summer arrives,  I find myself sewing less and gardening more.  It doesn't mean I'm not as enthusiastic about my hobby.  Summer is just so short, and I want to spend as much time possible outdoors.  Summer time can also be perfect for hand sewing or knitting outside on the deck; once the garden is planted, taken care of, and the yard work is done of course. 

I thought I would share an ongoing project I've been working on for a while.  Right now I'll call it my Snowbirds Quilt.  This is from a pattern by Jinny Beyer called Crayon Box.  The fabrics need to be arranged in light, medium and dark value colours. The way the different values are arranged creates an optical illusion, a three-dimensional effect that I find intriguing.

I used a jelly roll of a batik fabric line I liked called Snowbirds.  After cutting out my 60-degree diamonds, I drew in the seam lines with a pencil on the light colours and a white quilt pencil on the dark colours.  I really enjoy sewing theses diamonds together!  Hand piecing gives much more flexibility with all those seam allowances.  I'm not sure how I would sew this block on the machine.  It seems simpler to sew it by hand.  I learned a lot from Jinny Beyer's book Quiltmaking By Hand.  This is an awesome book if you're interested in hand piecing or hand quilting.

 This is the thread that I'm using for piecing.  It's smooth, strong 100% cotton.  It's not too thin or too thick and it grips the fabric securely.

Here's what the block looks like.

Here is the back showing the seam allowances.  There's definitely a system of the direction I pressed each seam allowance.  This block needs to be re-pressed but you get the idea.


I have quite a few more blocks to make.  Once I make it a size I like I will start to make the edge blocks.  I think I would like to hand quilt it using wool batting.  I couldn't imagine machine quilting something I spent months hand piecing.

Thanks for reading my blog and  Happy Sewing!

Thursday, 4 June 2015

Me Made May Week # 4

Well, this is the final Me Made May post.  I wore three handmade garments this week (which is actually a week plus three days).  I blame it on a combination of cool weather and my love of sewing summer dresses and my love of staying comfortable and warm.   Oh well.  Next year I may have to do Me Made June.

This is an unblogged skirt that I made from a Burda magazine a long time ago.  I don't remember the pattern name or number.   I'll try to hunt it down and add it in when I find it.  This skirt is actually really awesome.  I love the way it fits.  It's relatively high-waisted with nicely shaped gores that go all the way to the waistline (no waistband).  It buttons up in the front, and it has two front pockets.  This one is made with a linen blend fabric.  It wrinkles easily, but it feels super comfortable!  I think I definitely want to make another one of these skirts!

 A cool rainy day calls for jeans and a cardigan!  This is my Fawn Lace cardigan. Warm and comfy over a tank top.

 And, of course, my cozy Autumn Archer Shirt.

That's it for Me Made May 2015!  It turned out to be a challenge for me, but I've learned to love a couple of handmade pieces and will be more likely to pull them out of the closet.  It's such a pleasure planning and sewing new garments, this was a chance to learn to appreciate wearing the garments I have made.

Thanks for reading my blog :)

Happy Sewing!