29 April, 2011

Beyond the Cherry Trees Block #2

Well, I've officially gotten started on the Beyond the Cherry Trees Quilt, you could say...
Yesterday I completed the block and I'm on a roll now!

It'a bit wonky in spots, but that's ok, I'm just beginning to get the hang of things, and I'm looking at this quilt as my "learning quilt" , the quilt that will help me learn about applique.  I have one or two pieced quilts made many moons ago, and looking at them always reminds me of how far I've come and what I still need and want to learn.  I find that very valuable, especially now that I'm focusing on "the process" of quilting....

For this block I pre-basted the leaves, and glued them to the background.  Very handy, easy to transport, and makes stitching them down quite easy.  When the stitching was done, it took not even 15 minutes or so to soak the Roxannes' glue out.  Nice.
Oh and, I'm not pre-washing my fabrics, and the reds held beautifully! Phew!

Today was also "The Wedding" as the media called it, and while Prins William and (now) Princess Katherine were getting married, I got started BTCT's Block #1.

I must admit, I'm still a bit scattered, and need to find a rhythm of working a bit more efficiently, but I guess that will come eventually too....

I've pinned down the pieces because we are having beautiful sunny weather here, and since doors and windows are open, I didn't want my bits wafting off under couch and table...as it was, Darwin ran off with the toilet paper roll with my stems on it, with the intention of offering it as a gift to a friend who popped over.  Usually it's a bone, or toy of some sort, but they had been left the garden.....silly dog!

So tonight the leaves and buds will be pre-beaste, I'll continue making the flowers, and the glue everything down, and get to my favorite part, the stitching...!

And lastly Sharon at the Beyond the Cherry Trees blog, asked me to show which fabrics I was using...

These are the base line colors from which I'll work.  Mostly Moda Bells solids in a few different greens and solids from Modas' Maison Garance and Petite Ecole collection.  If and when I do add prints, they'll be bits from my stash.....

Since I've never made an applique quilt before, and so never a red and green one, I thought to stick close to the original.  I fell in love with the fresh colors of the quilt, and all it's faded bits.  I've never really made a quilt from solid fabrics, so this is a new something for me.  A good new something!
There's something to be said for the knowledge gained from "copying" or closely following an original.
Let's see how long I can keep that up!

Enjoy your weekend,

12 April, 2011

a new start, a new quilt

I spent the weekend making a start on the Beyond the Cherry Trees quilt.
It seemed the most simplest one to start with so I began with Block #2.
Because I'd like this project ready to take to my Bee, and easy to transport, I opted to try pre-basting the leaves, and using Roxanne's glue to hold them.  This way I can just grab my needle, thread and snips and get to sewing.

The background is Natural Moda Muslin, and I'm using Modas' Bella solids for the leaves.
This may become a test block as I'm still not sure if the muslin was a good idea to use, but that is what I had in my stash, so in my eagerness to get started, that is what I grabbed.....

I love this quilt just as it is, so I may just keep to the colors as they are in the actual quilt, including the faded cream colors.  Since I don't have all the fabrics yet, those plans could change....

Here's a picture of of where I am now...the very very beginning...

I'm really looking forward to learning a lot from making the quilt!

11 April, 2011

keeping busy...

It's been really quiet here on my blog, but that doesn't mean I haven't been busy!
I've mainly spent my time hand quilting and it's coming along nicely.  I've been enjoying the process which is something I've wanted to get into more rather than the focus on finishing a project.
Taking time to just  do something and learning from it has been very enlightening indeed, and has helped me to slow down and enjoy this art even more.

I'm just about half way through the quilting and with each fan I complete, I get more and more excited...

A snap of what it's starting to look like:

But that's not all I've been up to.
I've also decided to take the plunge and make an applique quilt.
I fell in love with the Beyond the Cherry Trees Quilt , was invited to join the blog, and finally got some baseline fabrics together to get started!

My resolution for this year was not only to enjoy the process, but to also make do with what I have and only purchase fabrics or supplies when needed.  I had a bolt of Natural Moda Muslin on hand, so that's what I'm using for the background blocks.  I am however, having questions about using this fabric as it's kind of thin.  I like the color and feel, but wonder if it's the right fabric for this project.  I do want a vintage, krinkly look, and plan to hand quilt when I'm done...

Wondering if anyone out there has had any experience with using this muslin and would want to share their thoughts on it?

Other than that, another activity that has been keeping me away from blogging is the big cleaning of my sewing room!  I guess the easiest thing to do would be to toss everything in the closet and close the door, but after having done that and still spending waaay to much time looking for fabrics or occasionally finding that I've made a double purchase, it's time to do a serious clean and find an system to store all those different sizes of fabrics!

Right now, all the patterns and magazines and being sorted and that's going pretty quickly.  Saving only those patterns I want to keep, putting them in a binder and tossing the rest of the magazine, is making for a lot of space and there's already an empty shelf for the books stacked on my sewing table waiting for a more permanent spot.

Speaking of which, it's time for me to get up there and work for another hour or so in that mess, so I have some time for my hand quilting as well.....


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