• My web site

  • Patterns

    Ormen Lange Bargello

    Pattern for the Ormen Lange bargello quilt

  • Mosaic Circles

    Downloadable pattern for Mosaic Circles

  • Bargello Flame

    Downloadable pattern for Bargello Flame

  • Bargello Dancing Flames

    Downloadable pattern for Bargello Dancing Flames

  • Somerset Pillow

    Downloadable pattern for Somerset Pillow

  • Nine Patch Kameleon Quilt

    Downloadable pattern for Nine Patch Kameleon Quilt

  • Downloadable pattern for Autumn Bargello

Sewing Machine Still Running

It has been some time since new projects were posted on here, but I can assure you that my sewing machine is still active, although not quite as active as in previous years.

About a year ago I finished my last commissioned piece, and decided not to take on any more commissions in the future, but to only sew according to my own whims.

The first thing I needed to do, was to let the machine run freely, – to just happily sew along without too much planning. That is what Log Cabin is for, in my opinion: Cut lots of strips in happy colours, light and dark, and just sew along. This was at the end of winter, and the Covid19 pandemic had just sent us all indoors, – so I craved some bright, sunny colours to work with.

I had planned and cut fabric for a large quilt for a double bed, but decided I did not need such a large quilt after all, and went for a single bed quilt instead. Then I suddenly had a lot of leftover blocks, so I could also make a throw.

And would you know, there were still lots of fabric strips left, so I could throw some solid black into the mix and make a Roman Stripes quilt. This one can go on a single bed too.

As we all know, scraps tend to multiply, so I had still lots of leftovers. This time around they will go into some scrappy blocks. By now I have enough for another throw, if I set them with sashings in between.

The finished quilts have all been quilted by Sølvi Quiltestudio. At the same time I also sent her a very old top, started some time in the early nineties. It is log cabin blocks sewn on a foundation, and I had planned to hand quilt it (silly me).  It was all basted and I had quilted perhaps a fifth of the surface before it was put away. I have long since realized that I would never finish the hand quilting, so I ripped it all out, and sent it to be longarmed along with the others.

Now it is finished, and I am very satisfied with that.

🙂

Eldrid

 

Winter Sewing

In between travelling, family obligations, and other stuff, some sewing is still happening in this house. These past months have been dedicated to finishing some UFOs (UnFinished Objects).

I had finally sent off three “leaders and enders” tops to be long arm quilted by Sølvis Quiltestudio, but when they arrived back this autumn, they went into a pile, waiting for me to tackle the bindings.

I finally got on top of the task this January. Sewing the first seam by machine does not take long once I get started, and putting the binding on three quilts at once was very effective, – it was done in almost no time at all.

However, sewing the binding to the back by hand is a much longer process. I enjoy doing this, but have to do it in short intervals because of shoulder pain. The quilt sits right beside my comfy chair so I can pick it up and do a few stitches whenever I feel like it.

I was so lucky as to get this retro combined pincushion and spool holder as a Christmas gift from a delightful young neighbour girl. I had been looking forward to using it, and it was perfect to sit on the table for such long term on-and-off sewing.

Finally, all three quilts are finished.

In between, I have also been making some tote bags. Like many quilters, I have aquired lots of fabric over the years, so there is no shortage of material for such projects. It feels good to put it to some use.

Most of the bags have been given away to charities and as gifts, but I kept a couple to use for shopping instead of the usual plastic bags.

🙂

Eldrid

Fair Weather Hexagons

The weather has been nice, – in fact more than nice: really, really hot for these parts of the world.

That is when I pull out my ongoing hexagon project and sit in the shade, cutting, basting and sewing.

hexagonjuly14a

When making the shorts shown in the previous post, I ended up with a lot of odd shaped remnants, perfect for cutting up into hexagons. They have all been basted, along with a few other remnant pieces laying around my sewing area.

hexagonjuly14b

A few have been made into flowers, with a few background pieces added, ready to be attached to the growing top.

hexagonjuly14c

I am starting to think that this will become a small throw for the sofa. It is wide enough by now, but has only a third of the desired height, so I will need to add about a hundred new flower blocks, plus some half blocks to make the edges even.

I see I will need a lot of fine weather to finish this one 🙂 🙂   Bring it on!

🙂

Eldrid

Hexagon Season Again

In spite of having had very nice weather for a long time, – and nice means sunshine on this usually very wet coast, – spring is still some way off, it seems. As soon as the sun dips below the horizon, temperatures drop and the frost bites again.

sewing hexagons outside

But there are moments, – like this afternoon, – when it is possible, even enjoyable, to sit outdoors and sew.

I am working on my “let’s-find-out-if-it-is-possible-to-join-hexagon-flowers-without-folding-the-paper-templates” project. I have cracked the code on how to, but have not written up the instructions yet.

Since this is my out-of-doors project, it is slow going.

april13

If the nice weather continues for some days, I should be able to get some more sewing done, as it is too early to do any gardening.

april13b

A bunch of snowdrops are blooming, plus three crocuses, – the rest is still under the snow at the moment.

The sunshine is nice, though, and if it could just stop snowing and freezing in between, we could have real spring in quite a short time.

🙂

Eldrid

More sewing

Another project sent off to the longarm quilter.

This is the large version of my Bargello Flame pattern.

Seems like I get a lot done when I do not have to spend time thinking and deciding about the next step. 😉

 

Fabrics for the next project.

🙂

Eldrid

 

Sewing

Not the most catchy title for a blog post, perhaps, but that is what I have been doing the last few weeks while my blog has been very quiet.

I am into one of those periods when I am not very creative, but just enjoy making simple projects with lots of mindless sewing.

Bargello quilts fit my mood perfectly, as they come together almost by themselves while I am thinking about something else, or listening to music.

This time around, I decided to also try out one of the thousands of tips that you can pick up from forums or blogs on the internet these days: joining squares for another project as leaders and enders.

Using leaders and enders when sewing is nothing new, – far from it, – and I have also been doing that before, but only using fabric scraps that were thrown away afterwards.

Many years ago, when making the quilt above, I cut lots and lots of 2 inch squares, and I had a box of leftover squares from this quilt tucked away below my ironing table. My plan was to join two and two of these squares as leaders and enders while also sewing the bargello quilt.

I first sorted the squares into groups of obvious darks, obvious lights, and mediums. The medium group became quite big, so I sorted those into medium lights and medium darks. Then I put the piles onto two trays. On the tray to the left are the lights and the medium darks, and to the right are the medium lights and the darks.

I started with the tray to the right, selecting a square from each pile to sew together in between the bargello strips.

Here are two squares going in as enders.

Cut off the bargello strips….

… and the squares lead on to the next set of bargello strips.

There are lots of seams in a bargello quilt…..

…… and the heap of joined squares is growing fast. At the moment I am thinking four-patches, and then we’ll see what it will turn into.

The first bargello top is finished and has been sent off to be longarm quilted.

The next project is on its way…..

… and the heap of joined squares is ever growing. I have already started on the second tray.

This is fun!

🙂

Eldrid

Progress 2

I finished the top of the shirt quilt a couple of weeks back.

I managed to hang it on the design wall to take this photo before my access to the wall was blocked by some of the things we had to move out from the front hall, which is being redecorated at the moment.

I decided on a light inner border, and then I chose the light plaid fabric for the outer border since this is one of the sturdier fabrics of the ones I have available. I should have wished for this border to be a little wider to have a better balance, but there was not enough fabric, so this will have to do. One shirt goes only so far.  I am planning on using the bright red plaid for the binding.

The backing fabric arrived this week, and has now been washed and ironed. My sewing machine is in for a check-up, so I am planning on sending the top out to have it quilted.

Eldrid

 

Progress

I have been making progress on the shirt quilt that I wrote about  here. I have been making blocks on and off during the autumn and winter, and last week I cleared my design wall so I could hang the ones I have made so far.

Here they are pinned to the wall, and after moving some of them about a bit, I think they will end up being joined in this order.  I am not sure if this will be the final size (plus borders, perhaps), or if I will add a row both ways. I’ll decide on that after I have joined these blocks.  I have a few leftover blocks, but I will have to make some more if I decide to make it bigger.

Up to this point, I have only used the fabric from the shirt sleeves, so I have plenty more fabric to go. Also, there are fabrics from all the shirts in these blocks, and since there are so many different ones, I could still make more blocks that would all be different from any block I have made so far.

Now to join the blocks.

Eldrid

Hexagon Flowers

After making patchwork for more than 20 years, I have accumulated a few fabric scraps, – in fact, I think they are breeding like rabbits even as I write. As throwing out fabric is more or less a mortal sin, I have to find ways to use those scraps.

Making paper pieced hexagons is one way of dealing with them, but it is not a very speedy technique, so I will have to look out for something faster as well. However, hexagons are great for taking everywhere, and is what I have been doing while soaking up the sunshine at the end of this summer.

I did some basting last autumn, and brought out the project again and did some more a few weeks back. Then I made lots of hexagon flowers, – well, – some anyway.

I plan on joining the flowers with one row of hexagons in between each one.  I want the connecting hexagons to be all in the same colour, – or very similar, – so they will act like a background to the flowers.  I plan on starting with the hexagon flowers I have made so far, then add more if I feel like it.

So I have been auditioning fabrics for the background. Here I have spaced the flowers at the approximate distance they will have in the quilt. I think the flowers really pop on a black background.

However, I doubt if I will be up to sewing so many hexagons in black, – I fear that it will be very hard on the eyes, and I might be discouraged and not finish the project. So even if I like the look of the black background, I may settle for a light one in the end. If so, I think I will have to keep the other light fabrics in the centre of the flowers so they do not blend too much into the background.

I have two and a half yards of this fabric, but think maybe I should use several light fabrics from the beginning in case I will be short. There is no telling at this stage how large I may want the quilt to be.

One of my goals is to find a way to join the hexagon flowers without having to fold the pieces with the paper templates still inside.  I do not know if it is possible at all, but I will try 🙂

Eldrid

Shirt Quilt

Making a quilt from shirts requires some extra steps compared to sewing from new fabric.

First, the shirts must be cut up, and everything that is not flat must be removed. From just 13 shirts I got a bucket full of seams and hems:

These are going into the garbage at once, but by looking into the bucket, I can get an impression of how the fabrics are going to look together.

Then I collected a plastic bag full of collars, cuffs, and shoulder pieces:

These will go into the garbage too, eventually. But they are going to stay till I see that I will not be  “just one little piece short” of any of the fabrics.  Although that is a situation which can spur creativity, it can also be very annoying, especially if you have “just” thrown that one piece away.

As a hoarder of almost everything, I now also have a small tin full of shirt buttons:

… and even a few button holes.

I also have a fairly large stack of fabrics:

I was a bit surprised at just how much fabric I could get from the shirts.

I decided to cut 5,5 cm wide strips from the fabrics. Then I can get fairly large blocks without too many seams.  The fabrics are not quilt fabric quality, – some are thinner, some are heavier, and some have a weave that makes the fabrics quite unruly.

I decided to start by cutting up one sleeve from each of the shirts. Three of them had only short sleeves, so I cut both of those. Many had stripes or plaids, and since some of the fabrics were a bit drawn from use, it was difficult to get the stripes straight when cutting lenghtwise, so I decided to cut them crosswise. That meant shorter fabric strips, but most of them are still long enough for the longest strip I will  need in the blocks.

Here I have got 12 blocks pieced together. I sew log cabin style, but with the same fabric going all the way round. Then I get the “square in square in square” effect. I sew alternately dark and light blocks, – the light ones being light – dark – light from the center and out, and the dark ones being dark – light -dark. Only a few fabrics are decidedly light or dark, – the ones in the medium range can be either in a light or a dark position, depending on which fabrics they go with. My aim is to have not two blocks alike, but I have not worked out yet if that is possible. I’ll just see what happens. I will need only 63 blocks for a small quilt to snuggle under for a nap on the sofa, so I think it is possible.

At 12 blocks into the quilt, there are a lot of fabric strips left from just 1 sleeve from each shirt. Some fabrics have not even been used yet.

I will be sewing for a long time if I am to make use of it all.

Eldrid