Monday, December 28, 2015

AGF Stitched Event - Locket Quilt

One of my favourite ranges that I fell in love with at Fall Market was Paperie by Amy Sinibaldi for Art Gallery Fabrics.  This is Amy's first range and - wow - it is ever so sweet and just the perfect assortment of fabrics.  The colours are delicate and bold and each print complements perfectly.

Being invited to work on the latest AGF Stitched Event together with Fat Quarter Shop has been great fun.  The latest Quilt design - Locket Quilt is a large scale block design that works so well with this range.  The Locket Quilt pattern (available free) can be found here.  Along with a Video Tutorial  - here.

These blocks came together quickly and I decided that I would turn my Locket Quilt Blocks into a Table Runner.  The colours in the prints allow the pattern to stand out and have sewn up well in a row which slightly differs to the pattern's "on point" block formation.

I quilted around the shapes using tramlines in matching Aurifil Thread colours.  

You can find the Quilt Kit to make this Locket Quilt and Backing Set all over at Fat Quarter Shop.

Here is the list of all the other participating Bloggers for you to check out the Locket Quilts and projects they have made.

Happy sewing
Jemima x 

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Top 5 Tools!

I often get asked about the Tools and Equipment I most often use in my own Sewing and Quilting.  So I thought that a blog post might be a great way to share my Top 5 Pics.

I looked carefully around my sewing room and thought about those Tools, Gadgets and pieces of Equipment that I always use.  The tools that would be great for any one to add to their equipment toolbox for making sewing better and easier.  These are my go-to's!

Bloc-Loc Rulers - I sew a lot of Half Square Triangles and Flying Geese blocks in my Quilting.  These rulers have changed how I sew them and I will never go back.  There is an inbuilt channel in the back so that you can line up your seams so that you are able to trim down your HST's or Flying Geese down to the correct size with perfect points every time.  While some may see the trimming as an extra step I think it makes for a much more professionally finished quilt and saves you battling to match up points as you sew. 

Bloc-Loc rulers are widely available, come in a variety of sizes and can be found in most Local Quilt Stores or easily online.

Clover Fork Pins - These are the best little gems of pins for when you are working with seams that you have pressed open.  They slide either side of the pressed seams to hold the seams perfectly as shown below.

Clover Binding Clips - I have to admit that I don't actually use these Clips for binding but for so many other uses within my sewing room.  I love using them for English Paper Piecing to hold my fabric covered papers together (as shown below).  I use them to hold groups of fabrics together when sewing.  I use them to hold Linings and Outsides of projects together while top stitching such as in Bags or Fabric Baskets - anytime where regular pins are filly to work with.

Clover Pressing Mat - when I spied this little mat at the Craft show earlier this year I have to say I hesitated at buying this.  I don't like Gadgets for the sake of it - I like products that work and will be used regularly.  Well this has been one of the best items I have bought in a long time.  I often sew hems, casings and turn down fabric.  This Pressing Mat means I don't have to take my tape measure to the ironing board overtime with me anymore and I just fold over the fabric to the required length and press.  Seriously this is well worth getting hold of if you sew lots of hems, sew lots of zips into things like cushions or other projects or make casings for things like drawstring bags.  This has become one of my most used tools in my sewing room.

Clover Black Gold Needles - Appliqué/ Sharps No 9 - I do a lot of hand sewing.  These are my needles of choice for English Paper Piecing, any mending, sewing my binding down or anywhere I need to use a needle and regular thread.  These glide through your fabric and have a nice flex as you work but are not flimsy.

It is easy to get caught up buying Gadgets, Tools and Equipment that end up on the shelf, not being used.  Tools that help make your Quilting and sewing more enjoyable are a great investment in your love of sewing.  

All these tools are ones I use the most.  It is coincidental that most of these items are Clover brand.  Just my personal preference (I have not been sponsored for these opinions.)

Happy Sewing
Jemima x x

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Smitten Quilt - My English Paper Piecing Adventure - The final chapter!

I can't believe I have stitched the final hand quilted stitches into my Smitten Quilt.  This quilting adventure has take me most of the year but I have never more enjoyed hand stitching and hand quilting.  

When I first started this quilt - fussy cutting was not on my agenda.  I had only bought Fat 16ths of my fabrics so this mostly wasn't possible with that size of material.  However as the year went on and I got my hands on some larger pieces of fabric just perfect for fussy cutting I could not resit adding in a few here and there.

I have always loved Hand quilting and as I went along English Paper Piecing the top I knew that I wanted to hand quilt this as wee.  I tried to make the hand quilting quite random, some hexagons are quilted around all sides and some not at all.  

For Hand quilting I used Aurifil 12 wt threads in a variety of colours.  Mostly matching fabrics and coloured threads as I went.  These have a beautiful sheen to them and the perfect thickness for hand quilting.  I also used Tulip Embroidery Needles - Sharps.  These have the perfect flex and size to the needle for such a big task.

I came across this "April Showers" fabric by Lewis and Irene earlier this year and purchased enough for the backing.  As soon as I saw it I knew it was perfect for this Smitten.  I then placed a few fussy cuts of this sweet girl into the front to tie them both together.

I am definitely Smitten with this quilt and I hope you have loved reading about my adventure along the way.

Happy Sewing 
Jemima x 

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Dailylike - a beautiful Online Store.

Have you heard of Dailylike? I recently discovered this beautiful online shop stocking the sweetest fabrics, trims, buttons, bias tape, fabric tape and all things paper.  They also stock a lovely range of Homewares and Gift wrapping needs.   

With all of my Quilting and sewing I am always on the lookout for fabrics that are unique and very good quality to add to my stash.  Sometimes I am after fabrics that haven't been seen everywhere and offer fresh prints and colours to work with.  The fabrics that Dailylike have are all wrapped into bundles of 3 Fat Quarter packs and all co-ordinated and matched beautifully to provide lots of inspiration for lots of projects.

They also stock beautiful items like this Small Wire Basket as well as Laminated Fabrics, Canvas and so much more.

If you find choosing colours to go together tricky then these bundles will be perfect for you as they are all matched and work well together or on their own. There are a variety of different textures within the fabrics to to add more dimension to your work.

I just adore Ribbon, Cotton Lace and trims.  I love incorporating different textures into my sewing and these trims are just so delicate and will look great especially on Zakka style projects.

Buttons, Buttons and more buttons all perfectly fabric covered buttons and made into sets to match your fabric bundles.  I especially think these fabric buttons look great for clothing but certainly would look great on any project.  

Dailylike have very generously offered all my readers a 15% discount on all purchases using the code- TIEDWITHARIBBON at the checkout.  Coupon code is valid until 24th December, 2015 which is great for you to stock up before Christmas.  They also offer flat rate shipping.

Jemima x 

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

The Farmers Wife 1930's Quilt-A-Long - #46 Jewel

Welcome to The Farmers Wife 1930's Quilt -A-Long.  I am sharing my tips and techniques to make block #46 Jewel with you all.  I was thrilled to be asked by Angie of GnomeAngel to participate an an official blogger together with Fat Quarter Shop.

It took me a long time to settle on which fabrics I would use.  I brought out a few collections like my Cotton and Steel, 1930's Reproductions and a few others but finally settled on some fabrics from my Liberty of London collection inspired by the colours of pink, yellow and red.

I love English Paper Piecing (EPP), I love the time taken to hand sew each stitch and how perfectly imperfect each stitch is.  I find it relaxing as well as a great way to take my sewing with me out and about on long car trips, waiting for my girls when they are at activities or just as a way to spend some time winding down.

I think that if you are going to spend time hand sewing then make sure you have the right tools and equipment to make the process easier and enjoyable.  These are MY favourite Notions and Tools for any EPP project.

(adds a 1/4in seam allowance around shapes)
in what ever shape or pattern you are using

Thread Basting versus Glue Basting - I really think this is just personal preference.  For this block I have chosen to Glue Baste.

Invest in good tools and equipment, for example you don't want to have inferior thread snap, break or shred for all the time you spend hand sewing and using needles that glide through your fabric will be much easier.  

#46 Jewel

FREEZER PAPER EPP METHOD - For this block I am using Freezer Paper to make my Templates.  You can of course use regular paper to print out your pattern and use but I hope to show you a technique you may have not seen before for English Paper Piecing.  This method makes it easy to keep pieces for each fabric together and stops the paper from moving about while you are basting.  Also because you will be dealing with Mirror Image pieces in this block it makes for easy cutting out without having to worry about which pieces to mirror on the fabric and getting muddled up.

Step 1 - This block does not use common pre-cut paper shapes or templates such as hexagons, diamonds or pentagons like in many English Paper Piecing projects so you will need to make your own Paper Shapes for this block.  I use Reynolds Freezer Paper and after printing off the Completed Block Template from the CD, trace the entire block carefully onto the paper side of the Freezer Paper using a sharp lead pencil and ruler.
Step 2 - Take your chosen fabrics for each of the pieces and number the pieces on the Freezer Paper pattern according to co-ordinating fabric number - in this block I numbered my Pink fabric 1, Floral fabric 2 and Yellow fabric 3.  Carefully cut out the Freezer Paper pattern pieces as accurately as possible to make your template shapes for your block.

Step 3 - Place the shiny side of the Freezer Paper to the wrong side of the fabric, leaving enough space around each piece to later cut out a 1/4in seam allowance.  Press the shapes to the back of the Freezer Paper and they "stay" in place on the back of the fabric without moving.  Cut out each of the shapes using your Rotating Cutting Mat and Rotary Cutter with a 1/4in seam allowance ready for Glue Basting.

Step 4 - Glue Baste your shape using your Glue Pen.  Do not trim any "tails" as you move these out of the way of your paper pieces as you sew.

Step 5 - To sew your pieces together place them with points/corners matching and right sides facing.  Put a Binding Clip at the opposite end to hold the points. Whip Stitch towards your binding clip keeping your stitches just through the fold of the fabric and not lower in the paper (otherwise you will not be able to remove these later).  Try to keep your stitches nice and even so that they are less noticeable.

Step 6 - Continue to English Paper Piece all the pieces together as shown in the pattern to make the block.  Binding clips are also fabulous to help you meet the intersections with the pieces so that everything lines up. 

Step 7 - Once you have sewn all the pieces together you can carefully remove the papers by lifting the seam allowance from the papers and peeling the Freezer Paper off the back of the fabric. Press the seam allowances back into position to sit flat and Press out, the outside seam allowance to make your block to correct unfinished size.  

I hope this Freezer Paper technique shows you how easy it is to sew with Mirror Image Pieces in your blocks.  Hand sewing your blocks does take time so enjoy it and the more you do the better and more confidant you will become with this technique.

Some of the other Blocks you will find this month and the talented Bloggers behind them are
05/11/2015: Cat @ Cat + Vee
Happy Sewing
Jemima x 

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Lecien Flower Sugar - Butterfly Charm Boxes

Flower Sugar by Lecien Fabrics is one of those iconic ranges that each year just keeps getting better and better.  This range - Flower Sugar Fall 2015 will be in stores in May 2016 and I have been asked by Lecein to one of their Flower Sugar World Ambassadors - getting to make and design with upcoming ranges to inspire your creativity.  I love the mix of prints within the colours with florals, checks, spots and all co-ordinated to work together like a dream.

I have a list of all the creative things I see that I want to make and I knew this bundle was perfect to incorporate two of these.  Firstly I have been dying to make some of Lilly Ella's (@lillyellasworld) Butterfly Charm Blocks.  Her free Tutorial is excellent and I just adored making this Foundation Paper Pieced Butterfly.  

Using the Butterfly Charm block as my inspiration I turned it into "The Square Box"  by Amber Crawley (@simplelovequilts).  Let me warn you these Boxes are addictive and with the beautiful Lecien prints it was easy to mix and match the fabrics to achieve the look I was after.

I even fussy cut some of the prints to make the most of the delicate florals with not only the top of the Aqua Box but also for inside the smaller box and lid.

Flower Sugar is definitely one of those ranges that is timeless and will be a loved addition to your stash and well worth the wait.

Happy Sewing
Jemima x 
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