Monday, April 27, 2015

Jitterbug part 7

So I finally finished sewing all the sashing for the jitterbug and decided to try and get it moving again. I laid out all my bits and moved them around until I was happy. I think the finished quilt will be nice but it's hard to tell. I think against my green carpet it doesn't look so nice. I think it needs bare floorboards and a white, sunny room... doesn't everything?

The next step was just to sew it all together. It's not a favourite part of the process as big bits of fabric are a bit of a pain to get through the sewing machine, they just drag and need to be pinned and I really try to avoid pinning these days. I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out though. There are a few places where things don't line up and there is a huge iron burn on one bit, but that's the love showing through right?

So now it's border time. I did toy with the idea of sacking the border. It feels big enough already! But I still have fabric left and I am keen to try and use it all up. It would be great to not have it in my stash anymore as I doubt I will do any more repro quilts as it's not actually my thing specifically.

I did something pretty monumental today. Well, monumental for me. I went to Fabrics Galore! Finally. I just tried not to think how far South London was and just got on with it. Before I knew it I was walking up Lavender Hill! It is a great shop; not as big as my rampant imagination had decided it would be, but still a great shop. Unfortunately they only had one repro fabric. Well glass half full, at least they had one. So the yellow fabric on the right is to be my backing. £7 a metre is my kind of price. So I am all ready to finish this quilt up.

I haven't quite bought enough backing as I am too stingy. I have 2 metres and the finished top is 56" (142.24 cm) x 72 (182.88cm)", so I am short on the width. But I thought I might put a long panel of the leftovers fabric in the middle to add some width. I seem to have lots of 4 square blocks left over so I will use those and other odds and ends. Plus I have run out of the £5 sheeting from Empress Mills! So near and yet so far. So I need to order some more before I can make the final border. Time for a break.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Sunday bits

You might think that I have forgotten about the Jitterbug quilt, but this is not so. It's such a big beast though that after creating all the blocks I had a break from it. Here they all are, waiting for the sashing.

Then in little bursts I have been doing the monotonous tasks of cutting out all the sashing strips, 10 at a time. I only do one side of 10 so in total I have 6 sessions of this to complete. I am halfway. Yawn.

I have also decided to minimise wastage by sewing 1/2 in from my diagonal seam so that I can trim off the excess and have another half square triangle. I thought I might put a strip of them on the back.  In the evenings I trim them and mark up the next set. I am not sure how people power through and do all this in one go. I don't have the will. I know it will be worth it in the end though.

In other news, I finally sewed together my bigger fractal block and I love it. It has quite bulky seams which makes lining up the central circle sections difficult but I was far better this time. It's still not perfect, but it's close enough for me. All these bias seams make lining up the sections really difficult. I might keep the paper on when I sew the quarters together next time. 

I am ready to make another block! I have been thinking about making it into a quilt. One thought was to incorporate it into my sampler quilt but I feel it might stand out as being too foundation pieced so the other idea is to combine it with the teeny tiny feather blocks somehow. I have lots of little ideas running around.

Print Print Print Print

I really like this block. My interest in the Jitterbug is waning. I feel like I just need to get on and finish it so that I can move onto the next project. Time to trim my sashing.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Teeny Tiny Foundation Piecing

So the problem with foundation piecing is that I seem to be getting a lot of scraps. How small does a scrap of fabric have to be before it is consigned to the bin? I find it very hard to throw anything away, but I just need to cut down the size of my scrap bag; it's just ridiculous.

After today's exercise I feel the scraps I am finally discarding are too small to do anything with. They can go even though I love each and every one of them, sniff. I might do an even bigger cull and try to ferret out fabrics which are not favourites. I feel it needs to be contained to favourites as it's just out of control.

I came across these great feather blocks on @sewstitchinghappy's instagram and decided that they might be perfect for using up some of these scraps. So I downloaded the pattern by @whatabobbin from her Craftsy page. I really enjoyed making these. I did the bottom bit wrong on all of them though which is irksome. Booo. I still love them though. I got much better as I went along.

I realised that oversized scraps work much better, otherwise I spend along time unpicking. It is wasteful of fabric though which I am not keen on.

Other exciting news. I managed to melt my iron. See the block on the right! I left the iron on so I could literally moved from sewing machine to iron and back each time I sewed as I was hoping it might improve my accuracy (usually i just finger press). Suddenly I smelt burning plastic and saw that the plastic around the metal part of the iron was literally melting. I tried to iron a block and it burnt a massive mark on the piece and the ironing board. I guess the thermostat just gave up the ghost. I feel lucky that I was right next to it at the time as it could have gone up in flames!

I also made a right mess of my sewing table by pulling out loads of scraps. You can just about see the sewing machine mat that mumple made me peeking through all the mess. Time for a tidy!

Anyway here are the blocks. I can't iron them though! Booo. I need to go out and buy an iron straight away!

I'm annoyed I got the bottom part of the feather wrong, you lose feather somehow without it. And two of my background are the same which is annoying. D'oh

This was the first one I sewed together and I managed to lose the central stem. I got wise to that from then on. You live and learn. I only made three in total. I am not sure what to do with them now. Maybe incorporate them into something bigger who knows.