Saturday, 22 September 2012

Box Table Runner

I've made this quilted table runner using the box quilt block.  It measures 16" by 48" and I've used three blocks to make it. 

The block is best made in quarters rather than rows.  The white squares are 4.1/2", the pink/white half square triangles are made from 2.7/8" squares and the rectangles around the squares are either 4.1/2" by 2.1/2" or 6.1/2" by 2.1/2".  The light blue and dark pink go on opposite sides of two of the squares and the dark blue and light pink are on the other two sides.

Sew the patches together in pairs and then gradually build up each quarter.  Sew the quarters together and then make two more blocks the same.  Sew the three blocks together in a row, then layer, quilt and bind as for a quilt.  It's a nice cheerful pattern and could probably also be used as a scrapbuster with a greater variety of colours.

I've also made a scrappy draught excluder for the front door.  It tends to let the wind in and with winter approaching I thought that it was time that I did something about it.

I made three rows of eight blocks each, alternating four patch units with plain squares (all from stash), then folded it in half and sewed two and a half sides, leaving a gap to turn it right side out.

I filled it with just about anything - scraps of fabric, scraps of wadding cut up until it was loosely filled and then slipstitched across the gap to close it.  I didn't want to use lentils or anything like that for the filling because I wasn't sure what would happen to them if they got damp, but I think that they would probably have made a better filling.  Oh well, we live and learn.

Thanks for visiting my blog.
I hope to see you again soon.

Friday, 21 September 2012

Nosegay Quilted Wall Hanging

I've made this wall hanging using Nancy Cabot's nosegay quilt block and I think it's quite effective.  It's 16" square and as you can see it's dead easy to make.  You'll need twenty 2.1/2" light squares, sixteen 2.1/2" dark and one white 4.1/2" square.  For the points of the star you'll need four rectangles 6.7/8" by 2.7/8" in both light and white fabrics.

The nine patch units in the corners are made using the light and dark squares only.  If I was making a whole quilt with this block I would sew together 2.1/2" strips of light and dark fabric, but as there's only one block I used individual squares and sewed them together across the rows and then sewed the rows together.

The rectangles for the points of the star need to be cut along one diagonal to give two triangles.

Sew together a white and a light blue triangle to make a rectangle.  You'll need two of these for each point of the star.

Lay the patches out with a nine patch in each corner and the star points between them, all round the white 4.1.2" square in the centre.  Sew together across each row and then sew the rows together.  Layer, quilt and bind as for a quilt.  I planned this as a wall hanging but haven't got round to adding a hanging sleeve yet.

I've been working all week on a quilt as you go project with sashing because I'd had so many emails asking for tips on keeping the sashing lined up from one block to the next.  I've just posted the pattern on the website as a star quilt pattern with quilt as you go.

Thanks for visiting my blog.
I hope to see you again soon.

Sunday, 16 September 2012

Quilted Toaster Cover

It's always good to find inexpensive things to make for gifts so I was thrilled when I managed to make this toaster cover from scraps.  I even pieced the wadding from scraps, so it was very cheap to make and looks lovely and cheerful in my kitchen.

I used one hundred and twelve 2.1/2" squares from my stash, chosen randomly, I made two panels three squares by four and one panel eleven squares by eight.  The two small panels cover the sides of the toaster and the large panel goes up the front, over the top and down the back of the toaster.

I layered the panels with wadding first then backing fabric right side up and patchwork panel right side down.  Sew round three and a half edges so that you can turn the panels right side out through the gap.  Trim the wadding and backing and snip the corners and then turn the panels out. 

Turn under a small hem and slipstitch the gaps closed.  Topstitch and quilt - I just quilted in the ditch along the seam lines, then sew the three sides of one small panel to one long side of the large panel.

When that is complete, repeat on the other side with the second small panel to complete the toaster cover.  It's really quick and cheap to make and would make a great gift.

What else have I been up to?  I've added several more quilt block patterns to the website. The one on the left is called Roads to Berlin and I think it would look great in a quilt - when time permits .....

Thanks for visiting my blog.
I hope to see you again soon.

Friday, 14 September 2012

Forge Mill Needle Museum

Well, after an absence from my blog I am back because I have just been to a lovely place that I must tell you about - the Forge Mill Needle Museum in Redditch.  What a treat!  Redditch and the area used to be the world leaders in needle manufacture and the museum gives a wonderful idea of how needles were made in the 19th century.

I think that I can safely say that almost all of it was new to me.  Apparently needles were made by drawing out lengths of steel, basically stretching the wire so that it became longer and thinner.  This was all done manually at one time.  The wire was then cut into double the length of the needles required so that two needles were made at a time.  The photos both show some of the range of needle packs through the years.

The double needles were ground to a point at each end and then two imprints were made in the middle for the eyes of the needle.  Once these had been cut through the double needle was cut in the middle to separate the two needles and then the strengthening and cleansing of the needles could take place.  What amazed me was the sheer quantity of needles made in this way - needles from Redditch were shipped all over the world at one time.  One interesting thing was that ordinary needles were used in surgery for a long time before specialist surgical needles were designed and manufactured.

Although I have wanted to go to the museum for a long time, the thing that finally drove me there was the quilt exhibition that they are running at the moment.  There were some delightful wall hangings based on the Far East using a great variety of techniques and stitches.  Really interesting.  The exhibition runs until 21st October and this link will give you more information about the museum:

Tomorrow I will definitely catch up and let you know about all the blocks and quilts that I have been working on while I have neglected my blog.

Thanks for visiting my blog.

Best Wishes