Quilting by Celia

Quilting by Celia

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

More quilting on the HQ18 and a top

I have been very busy with work so I haven't done as much quilt playing as I was hoping.
I had Orca Bay on the machine for over two weeks and this time I used my rulers as well as some free motion quilting.
Because I quilted every block it has taken a fair bit of time and a lot of thread but it's all good experience to develop my skills... plus it's a lot of fun !

I choose stars as the main quilting design on each of the star blocks and smaller stars in the yellow blocks.

For the border I used another ruler to mark the scallops.
In some places I attempted to do straight lines without the ruler but at times the line was not too straight.
I much prefer guiding the machine with free motion quilting than ruler work as it is faster and more liberating but it all comes down to what you want to achieve.
Anyway Orca Bay is now finished and ready to be used. Had I not the HQ the top would have stayed folded away for many years to come.

Another quick project which I did recently was this quilt top.
This was a free pattern from Quilting Treasures  called  "Wild Horses" and the finished size is 61 1/2".

Monday, February 11, 2013

My 4th quilt with the HQ

I don't recall if I mentioned before but the main reason I purchased the Handi Quilter is because my tops were just lying around and to send them away to be quilted was becoming quite expensive. So with 14 completed tops and others on the go, I guess getting the machine was a much needed purchase.

I finished this top about a couple of years ago, when I was on a scrap busting mission, using most of my small solid scraps and 'making' fabric for this design.

It's an easy quilt to make but takes quite a lot of time and a lot of thread to join all the bits.
This is what it looked like when I got it off the machine.
This is a close-up of the quilting.  Once again I used variegated thread and the overall effect turned out quite nicely.
I have now Orca Bay loaded on the frame ready to go. Not sure how it's going to be done at this stage but whatever happens I am going to have fun, practice and learn new skills !  Just wish there were a lot more hours in the day for my quilting ...

Sunday, February 10, 2013

'Dear Jane' Quilt Show

This is the the Box Hill Town hall where yesterday I went to see the "Dear Jane" exhibition.

To celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Dear Jane quilt, members of the Australian Quilters Association have created an exhibition featuring their own recreations of the 1860 American Civil War pattern.
The original Dear Jane quilt, made by Jane A. Stickle in 1863, became famous for its non-traditional, innovative, geometric design.

They displayed about 50 quilts with some still not fully completed.  

They styles of fabrics used made them so unique and yet very recognisable.
Association spokeswoman Pam Hammer said fifty members took up the Dear Jane challenge. "Some have stuck to the very traditional design, and other members have done if differently," she said.

People used very bright fabrics, jungle fabrics, Aboriginal fabrics, batiks and other styles.

From darks to lights.

To make the show more interesting, they had other quilts, some clothing and a couple of historical Australian quilts.

It was worthwhile to attend and marvel at the amount of work involved in each and every quilt on display.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

More practice on the Handiquilter

I had some blocks I made last year, so I decided to join four of them and make a table topper.
I mainly wanted to practice some more free motion quilting and try out some different motifs.

It's getting easier each time and loading the quilt is now a straight forward but critical part to begin the quilting process.
At this point I had not purchased any rulers and given that I don't have a computerised program (rather expensive), it all comes down to practice, hand and speed co-ordination and getting used to the feel of the machine.

I tried to do a 'fake' trapunto in this block and I quite like the way it turned out. I used the micro-handles for the mini sized stippling in the center.
The heart and circular shapes are also free hand without any pre-marking. 

And this is what the final quilt looks like after adding the binding. I had washed it and it still looks quite good  with a nice feel to it.

Next project (my 4th in about 2 weeks) I am planning to use groovy/pattern boards.
My next quilt is ready and waiting...

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Teddy Bear Quilt completed

I have done my first 'real' quilting project on the Handi Quilter. Every step of the way has been fun and I have learnt so much.  From loading the machine, to changing the needle, adjusting the tension and the actual sewing has been interesting.
Also collecting gorgeous threads has been fun (but expensive !).

I did not mark the quilt but instead decided to do loops around the edges and outline the applique.  I also did tiny loops inside the red flowers.  Doing the loops was very easy and fast but the outline requires a steady hand which I am still getting used to.

I made this quilt many years ago and has been in a bag along with another 10 or so waiting to be quilted. 

 The applique took several months to do back then. It's hand stitched using blanket stitch and has a fair bit of embroidery, beading as well as I added some buttons to accent the dresses and shoes of the teddy bears.  The lighting was not the best when I took the photo.
Looking at it with a critical eye, I think I should have quilted it more in the centre but I was afraid to overdoit. But as I said, it's all part of the journey of improving my skills and it's a lot better than having this top folded up in a bag and not being used at all.

On a quick project front, my daughter asked me to make her a couple of bags to store her Phone and ear plugs. 

This is what's making me happy in my garden....