Wednesday, 30 August 2017

WOW: Magnolia Madness!

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays 
It's winter down my way and the weather has been weird and it's confused my magnolia tree. A lot of the buds have been destroyed by frost and look like they won't be developing any further. This poor tree has been hit by several false start seasons in a row over the last few years and I'm wondering when I'm going to get to see it in full bloom again.

Oh well, I guess I'll have to make my own 'Monday Flowers' vase installment and get my magnolia fix that way!

I've been photographing bits from my garden to add to my colour files which I always like to leaf through when in search of inspiration.
I have three quilt designs on my desk at the moment and I'm torn equally between each one. The hardest part of releasing each new quilt pattern is deciding which to 'bring to life' via the pattern sheet as I simply don't have enough lifetimes to do them all.

Today I'm doing the laundry and rearranging some plates before I can get back to finishing up some applique prep work. Chores are boring but necessary. I keep telling my DH that I need staff, so that I can dedicate myself to quilting full time. But he doesn't take my staffing requirements seriously. What's a quilter to do?!

What's Your WOW?





Monday, 28 August 2017

'Monday Flowers' is Launched!

I'm so in love with Magnolias right now. My teacup magnolia tree is budding and promising a whole window full of blooms and I've got my fingers crossed for a bumper magnolia season so I can bring those gorgeous branches indoors for arranging. When I designed my weekly vase range, I just knew magnolias would feature for my 'Monday' vase. Because, after the real thing, there is something just as satisfying - and that's fabric painted magnolias on my wall. 

So here it is. An applique arrangement for any wall you think could use some floral colour. Will your magnolia's be soft and gentle like my own colour scheme? Or will your magnolia's be bold like my fuchsia ones below? Florals are so versatile, you can set the mood and match any interior theme that suits you. 
 
This is 'Monday Flowers' and it's a flower gallery style wall hanging. I’ve designed seven vase designs, one for each day of the week. Each is a stand alone wall hanging, designed to showcase my love of vase arrangements for the home.

Monday Flowers finished size is 23 x 33 inches which feels like a perfect 'painting' size on my walls. The pattern also includes a 50% reduced option for anyone wanting to make it smaller. It's perfect for beginners or anyone who wants to make a statement in applique.


Monday Flowers 
Complete Digital Pattern
(Digital Downloads are INSTANT)
$12.95 USD

Friday, 25 August 2017

OMWFB: Showing Off The Vase 1 Blocks

Oh WOW, take a look at these beauties! I haven't even started my own On My Window, Flowers Bloom yet, but I am very fortunate that I get to enjoy watching everyone else makes theirs over in my BOM Group. It's a hive of activity over there, whenever I drop in there's someone doing something incredible. I just sit down with a cup of coffee and swoon.

I only just released Part 1 of On My Window, Flowers Bloom on August 15th, but already some eager quilter's were quick to get started. So I asked them if I could show off their blocks here on the blog, and they generously agreed. So here we go:

First to get her block up and going was Jenny Henry. She even posted her process over on her blog (click here to visit her blog now). No regular readers of this blog will be surprised to hear this as Jenny is super quick with all my projects and each one somehow ends up being prettier than the last! I don't know how she manages it. 
How gorgeous is her fussy cutting for the centre bloom with just a dash of green? And I love that sky cloud print behind the window too. And her frame fabric is tiny bricks! It's all just so perfect.
Now for another Vase 1 that is equally beautiful but oh so different - take a look at Nancy Randy Paris's block. WOW! How absolutely beautiful are these colours? My goodness I was all in a swoon when I saw these pics.
The background is a scene of (birch?) trees that work perfectly and the balance of yellow, warm orange and brown along with the green foliage is just spot on. It's not easy to get such a harmonious balance that still shines so brightly, but Nancy did it!
And this fabulous color pop below reminds me of the Kaffee Fassett version I have in mind for my own OMWFB. Isn't it just so stunning?! It belongs to Valerie Giles. The foliage has been fussy cut to perfection - look at those leaf veins. The blooming heads are so cheerful and the vase along with that great blue background is just wonderful.
What more can I say? On My Window Flowers Bloom has only just launched and already the blocks being made are all so different but so beautiful and inspiring. WOW!

Thanks Jenny Henry, Nancy Randy Paris and Valerie Giles for allowing me to show off your blocks at this early stage. What eye candy!

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Like it? Make it!
This post is related to On My Window, Flowers Bloom which is my current Free BOM. 
It runs from August 15th - November 15th 2017. 

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Wednesday, 23 August 2017

WOW: Prep & Conquer

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays
People always ask me how I get so much applique done and I always give the same answer - turn edge applique is a game of preparation. You must prep. If you don't like prepping, then applique is not for you. There simply isn't any way around this - although people have asked me if there is a secret more times than I care to count. The secret is prepping. So don't be daunted, just get stuck in. And once you do, you too can prep and conquer!

This envelope is my work for the morning, here I go!

What's Your WOW?


Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Making Secret Garden Part 7

In my last Secret Garden post on the 1st, I showed you what the Secret Garden Part 7 block looked like (above). Today, I'm going to show you how I make the leaves using a turn edge method. Now, I prefer turn edge, so this is the method I'm showing. But you need to know that using a raw edge is also perfectly fine. In fact, I had planned to raw edge this entire quilt but found myself turn edging without really thinking about it. This happens when you prep as much as I do. I have so many quilts on the go that I sometimes lose track of myself. And when I realized I had gone ahead and turn edged so much..I decided to stick with it.
 Here's my fusible leaf shape with a fabric seam allowance, cut out and ready to turn
My preferred glue is always Elmer's disappearing purple but when I work on these small pieces, I use a glue stick I purchased at a local quilt store because it's smaller and drier to work with. This particular stick has no branding, but it is very dry and tacky - this makes it perfect for working on such a small piece. I could have also used the Elmer's, but it's wetter and when I turn the fabric edges they can roll back out. I usually keep a 6 gram tube of Elmer's next to my applique tools with the lid off to have a 'tacky' and slightly dry stick on hand for the same reason.
 So here's my piece with the glue smeared across it
 Using a wooden orange / manicure stick, I turn the first edge down one side of my shape
As I work the turn, I 'pleat' any excess fabric by bunching it close together as evenly as possible as I turn the shape
 When I reach the tip point of my shape, I dab some glue
 and before turning the other side, I flip the tip point up now
 like so
 Now I add some more glue to the side and hold the shape between my thumb and finger
 And sharply turn the other side so that the side turns over the tip point
 which leaves a little spot a bit higher up which I;ll need to pleat as I glue it down into position
 and this is what the finished piece looks like
 and this is the front
 and this is what it looks like when it all comes together
There is no cheat way around this process; if you're going to turn edge, your points have to be secure and neatly tucked away.
Turn edge applique is all about the prep: I have so many projects on the go that I keep my prepped pieces in envelopes, then bundled together. Often, I will spend days cutting out pieces to ready them for this turning step. I can turn pieces like this on a lap table in front of the TV or radio in the evenings and I usually have a few quilts worth of pieces on my WIP shelves to do during winter. In fact, I often discover prepped pieces for quilts I'd even forgotten I'd started years ago!
and now I have some buds to turn..

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

WOW: My New Free BOM Is Up & Running!

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays
If you haven't already heard, there's a new free BOM in town and it's here to keep you busy right up until Christmas, so raid that stash and create a gorgeous windowsill scene today. I'm making mine up in wonderfully cheerful Fassett's and can't wait to start showing off my vases.

If feels great to have another BOM out and I'm already excited because I know there'll be lots of eye candy all over the Group before too long. Phew! Another BOM out of my sketchbook and brought to life. It feels good to get it out into the world.

What's Your WOW?


Tuesday, 15 August 2017

'On My Window, Flowers Bloom' is Launched!

'On My Window, Flowers Bloom' is launched!
Here’s  a windowsill straight from my  imagination—full of blooming flowers set against a shining sky, set in by an arched frame and studded with stained glass diamonds. 

As this is a short BOM, I've provided all the fabric and cutting and instructions this month, meaning that you can decide how to pace yourself in assembling the top over the next 4 months. You can put the whole 'background' together and then just add the flowers each month or progress steadily each month - the choice is yours.

Be sure to read through the pattern and understand it before making a start and don't forget I have lots of tutorials on applique techniques right here on my blog. Simply browse through my archives to find these. I'll also add a linky below to get you started. 

I can't wait to see how your own window comes together in a beautiful blooming scene, so please stay in touch via my BOM Group or here on my blog. 

 This is a Free BOM in 4 parts
Release Dates: August 15th - November 15th

Download it: 
Right here on my blog each month or over in my BOM Group


Click this image to start downloading the PDF file right now
this link will be live until the Free BOM period ends on November 15th 


Members of my BOM Group can download the file from the Group "FILE" area




Saturday, 12 August 2017

New Free BOM Sneaky Peek!


'On My Window, Flowers Bloom'

Finished size: 
38 x 48 inches

Free BOM in 4 parts: 
August 15th - November 15th 2017

Download it: 
Over in my BOM Group 
or right here on my blog, on the 15th of each month.
 
I promised you a sneaky peek, and here it is! Which one do you prefer? My simply lovely coloring or my Fassett stash busting one just above? My DD loves the first one but I must confess, the bold Fassett beauty is calling my name..

When I asked if you fancied another Free BOM to keep you busy right up until the end of the year, I really didn't think you'd take me up on my offer...but I was wrong! 

I really love the poll feature over on my BOM Group because it lets me know what everyone feels like doing. And you know me, I have lots of designs just waiting to be released, so whenever I get the opportunity to share another BOM, well, I'm over the moon about it. 

'On my Window, Flowers Bloom' says it all. I love this design. I love the flowers and all the fun to be had during fabric selection. Will you go sophisticated with a naturalistic pallette or bright and bold? And what about that sky peeking through? Will it be daytime? Night time? Starry or snowy? I couldn't decide. I kept going back and forth. In the end I played around with two main ideas; the top one is just lovely and I can already see it shining on my wall. The one below is made up from my Fassett stash - because it's about time I started putting that gorgeous stash to proper use in a fabulous wall hanging. 

Whichever way you decide to go with it, I can't wait to see your progress. So don't forget to share as you work and chat along with all of us over in my BOM Group - we're more than just an online quilting group, we're a friendly and supportive community. 

Love it? Make it! This BOM will be released in 4 parts and is completely 100% free. And when I say free, I mean it. There are no hurdles you have to jump or annoying things to subscribe to, no email lists and no junk or trickery involved. Either download it from the FILES area over in my BOM Group each month OR right here on my blog on the 15th. Simple.

'On My Window, Flowers Bloom' starts August 15th. 

Let all your friends know and get together to make this beauty right in time for Christmas. Yes, you can make this pattern together during bees and quilt shops are also welcome to take part. 


Wednesday, 9 August 2017

WOW: Slow Down August!

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays 
I have so many exciting piles and nests around the house, each one a 'project' or WIP in progress that I'm playing with and tinkering on. Today I'm deciding what to commit to before the end of the year, and what to pack away as projects for another day.

Next week, my new Free BOM begins, so be sure to keep an eye out - I'll post more about it on Friday. That will take us up to the end of the year and before then, I'll have another free surprise to share too. Today, it's all about pulling out my diary and getting organized.

I must admit, I feel like the year is now basically charging head first into Christmas and before I know it, a whole New Year will be knocking on my door before I'm ready. Time to get busy!

What's Your WOW?




Thursday, 3 August 2017

'Thursday Flowers' is Launched!

I'm so excited right now, it's infectious! I'm in the middle of moving around my lounge room to change wall focus. Well, when I say I'm doing it, I should probably clarify that it's my DH doing it for me. Don't worry, he loves changing around all our household furniture to accommodate my quilts 😉! Because, whilst some people hang painted artwork in their home, I prefer to showcase applique. And right now, I've got a new range to showcase! 

This is 'Thursday Flowers' and it's a flower gallery style wall hanging. I’ve designed seven vase designs, one for each day of the week. Each is a stand alone wall hanging, designed to showcase my love of vase arrangements for the home.
I especially love it when my quilts are at first mistaken for paintings or murals and are then found to be textile on closer inspection. And that's what this set of wall hangings is all about. In many ways, stylized applique is a form of painting—with fabric! And I do love it. What better way to show off my passion for all things textile?  

Thursday Flowers finished size is 23 x 33 inches which feels like a perfect 'painting' size on my walls. The pattern also includes a 50% reduced option for anyone wanting to make it smaller. It's perfect for beginners or anyone who wants to make a statement in applique.


Finished size 23 x 33 inches OR 11.5 x 16.5 inches
Complete Digital PDF pattern for printing at home
**Digital sales are instant**

$12.95 USD

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

WOW: Look at the Birdy!

WOW = WIPs On Wednesday
This lovely pigeon was in need of rescuing from my neighbor's roof - she was lost, sore and scared. There's something wrong with her wing and she spent two nights out in the howling wind and rain before I managed to coax her into my laundry where she showed herself to be super calm, gentle and sweet natured. I was sure someone was missing her so I called around all the local vets. They told me that if I brought her in, they would kill her because she was an introduced species. Well, I couldn't have her killed just when I'd rescued her, so I went onto a Lost Bird site in my local area.

Lucky for her, an animal rescuer with a pigeon aviary let her join his gang. Phew! That was a close call. Between vets wanting to kill her and people wanting to collect her so they could eat her, she's ended up in a kind of Pigeon Heaven.

And I have my laundry back, so it's time to get washing. I'm afraid that with all my creating lately, the laundry usually lapses and then I have to wash back to back for 2 days to bring it back under control, so I'm going in, wish me luck :)

What's Your WOW?



Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Secret Garden Part 7 is Launched

Part 7 is all about these applique motif triangles. From this block I'm working on, I'll cut 4 x triangles and set them aside until it's time to assemble the top. It's a Mystery and some quilters are asking me where on earth do these fit in? What can I say? Surely this is half the pleasure of a Mystery?! You really have no idea what's next and in the case of Secret Garden, believe me - no one knows what's next. There's more to come, each even more intriguing than the last..until the final reveal. So just wait and see, it will be worth all the suspense..
Once again it's all about the prep. First I made my stems. I used a 6mm bias maker for this which saved me lots of time. I don't know why I didn't do this sooner. I have a 6mm and 12mm maker but haven't been able to find one that makes 8mm or 10mm and now that I know how useful they are, I want every possible size. I don't think they exsit but live in hope that someone somewhere has bothered to make them. I've been looking online without luck, so if you have these inbetween sizes or know where I can get them, please let me know as I could really make use of them.

Anyway, I cut strips, feed them through the maker and then pin the edge to my ironing board (which is covered with this super busy print, sorry)
and then I simply drag the maker with my iron following along
It's quick and easy
 Now that I have all the stems I need
it's time to applique my stems into position
for now I'm using basting glue to keep them in place before stitching them down
and when all my applique is completed, I'll cut this square into 4 x triangles and set them aside 
These are the fabrics I've opted for, as my background is light green, I decided to mix in some pink with these blocks. They will appear evenly around the quilt, so I want them to pick up the shades I've used in my main applique blocks. I've opted for harmonious, but contrast would work too - especially if contrast elements will show up elsewhere in your fabric selections.

I have 16 x triangles to make, from 4 x squares so I'm busy getting it done. Can't wait to see how you are making yours. If you're not already a member of my Free BOM Group over on Facebook, be sure to join - it's a busy hub of quilters sharing their work each day and I love dropping in and getting inspired.



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Welcome to this wonderful Mystery BOM 
You can join right now!

Digital pattern downloads are instant!
The BOM runs for 12 months and you can catch up on all missed blocks right away.
The remaining pattern installments will be emailed to you directly each month
The finished quilt size is 80 x 80 inches