Friday, 27 October 2017


New York Beauties and Flying Geese

I've not really had the time to blog as much as I wanted to lately, but I've not been idol and now have a que of things just waiting to be shared, having recently been told off by Carrie for not blogging daily, I'm sure she'll be pleased!

I'm going to start with Saturday just gone and my monthly meet up with my favorite quilting gal pals! They never fail to amaze me with their creations and inspire me every month to want to do at least 4 more projects than I actually have time for!

First up Caroline, who we all agreed has totally gone mad, she recently tackled the 365 block a day challenge and has now got herself tangled up in the weekly block challenge of the gorgeous Etoiles Rouge put on by Green Avenue Quilts, featuring 49 variations of the traditional Ohio Star block.

Putting her own slant on it and making all her blocks in varying shades of blue and creams in a mix of great patterns.

Val was busy quilting the main panel of a bag she's been working on, she has been very brave with her color choices lately favoring bright and striking colors with more modern prints than she's usually drawn to.

Kerry has been working very hard on a baby quilt with a modern twist and finally was able to add the finishing touches! I love her choice of fabrics, not something I would initially go to for a baby quilt but so modern and fresh I think I'm a convert to purple, mustard and grey! We originally found the adorable print of hedgehogs and forestry at Sandown (I think?!) and then went on a mission to add to the selection! The pattern very simply strip quilting - jelly rolls are perfect for such a thing, or you can cut your own if you need them wider than 2.5", sew them end to end and a couple of times side to side and presto one fab quilt top in an afternoon! I think I need to pop up a tutorial on this, you won't believe how effective they are!

For the back Kerry stuck with a plain grey whole cloth approach but added some buzzy bees and a few letters from Spell It with Moda by using the applique method.

Carrie was adding the sashing to a special project we were all involved in making, she wanted to make a quilt for her mom it had to be relatively quick and straight forward to put together and ideally layer cake friendly as she had a stack of Blue Barn by Moda that was her inspiration. Enter the Layer Cake Sampler - a series of eye catching blocks that have a multitude of variations, and can be purchased from Material Girl Quilts.

We all made 4 blocks each, choosing which variations we wanted to use in order to help her get the quilt finished on time. She continued her efforts at home and the quilt top is looking lovely.

We started and finished our blocks for this quilt when we went on our first quilt retreat over the Summer, Kerry did a bang up job of finding us an amazing house with huge rooms, large tables for lots of quilting and a plethora of pubs! As well as these blocks, I was also working on my contribution for the UK Travelling Quilt Bee that month, if you haven't already you can read about the start of that journey here.

I had recently purchased New York Beauties and Flying Geese, published by C&T Publishing and written by the wonderfully inspiring Carl Hentsch from 3 Dog Design Co, described by Tula Pink as a book that 'asks the maker to see more than boundaries and categories, to think beyond the usual choices and to make something exceptional' and the author himself as a book that will allow you to 'create quilts that have standard building blocks of pieced arcs, plain arcs and fans that could be mixed and matched in a variety of ways' I was hooked from the very first page!

Although I really wanted to make every block and quilt in this book, I decided to start with Rust, 

I loved the size of the blocks and really thought they would lend themselves well to all the other blocks in the Bee I had to work with. Along with all the inspirational photos of the finished blocks and quilts in the book, there are fab 'drawings' of placements and how each one goes together, which make the whole process so clear and easy to follow.

Another one I love is Sorbet,

At the back of the book is the block index and all the templates you need to make everything in it, one of the reasons that this book is so amazing for me is the unlimited options there are for creating your own blocks as all the arcs etc fit together so you literally can mix and match to your hearts content.

If you are new to foundation/paper piecing don't be put off, there are very helpful and easy to follow instructions at the start of the book to get you on your way!

I chose to make my blocks for this Bee in bright yellows, oranges and reds - here they are sitting proudly at the top of this gorgeous quilt

If you have this book and have been working on some adventures of your own, I'd love to hear about them - get in touch in the usual way!

Happy Quilting
Kerry xx

Friday, 20 October 2017


The Sequel...

Rather embarrassingly I started this quilt almost 2 years ago even though I had a set deadline life and many other things just got in the way and it sat on the side being ignored, you can see the beginning of the journey here but feeling newly motivated and with a new deadline for completion in mind, Modern Man Sampler currently looks like this 

This isn't anything like the final layout as I still have about another 17 blocks of varying sizes from 6" - 18" to go and I am also still in the process of trying to decided what these will be which isn't helping! Any ideas? The only criteria is that they are modern and manly, or traditional that can look manly!

My initial inspiration was London Calling by Quiet Play which I got off Craftsy, I actually have quite a few of her patterns because as regular readers will know I love foundation/paper piecing! The patterns are clearly marked and very easy to follow, a couple of the sections are a little bit fiddly due to the size of the pieces but the outcomes are always fantastic! My latest addition is the proud solider

I love how this turned out! He look so crisp and clean, I was a bit nervous about having so much white, but I think it makes the colors pop really well, although his face blends in a bit in the picture, it is actually Kona Flesh I've used and looks much better in person.

I also had some time yesterday to whip up a few 6" blocks from Don't Call Me Betsy's Epic Sampler I love these blocks so much, they all look good on their own or in groups or just altogether, she really is one of my true inspirations.

I found it a little bit tricky to try and get that Friendship Star to sit flat, you can see that it is still slightly wonky, I am hoping that some crafty pressing will sort it out, otherwise I shall have to rename it Wonky Star!

As well as getting my quilt mojo back in full force we've also been Wedding Fairing our little socks off! There is so much information and so much to take in, it's quite overwhelming! My favorite human has been brilliant, trailing behind carrying brochures, leaflets and business cards and ooooing and aaahhing in all the right places!! My top find of this weekend was a great florist who specializes in making rose gold foliage, as this is one of our main colors I can't tell you how thrilled I was find him, just have a look how gorgeous this is......

I've got a whole morning of quilting tomorrow with my quilt squad, looking forward to a good catch up and having a nose at all the amazing things they have been up to over the last month.

If you've been up to something wonderful you'd like to share, get in touch and I'll put it up. Alternatively if you are offering a fab BOM, Sampler or Pattern and would like to get that out there I'd be happy to help, I have so many people asking about new things to start or to test!

Happy Quilting
Kerry xx

Tuesday, 10 October 2017


An Animal Menagerie 

It feels like an age since I've had the time to sit down and share my thoughts and adventures, not for want of intention simply to much life going on! I've not been idol in fact far from it I seem to have quilts and ideas coming out my ears! 

I finished Grans Fancy Forest and thankfully it went down a treat, although the deliberate errors still really annoy me, Gran didn't mind them.

Not only has it made a great addition to the chair, but the spot has now been taken over for the very important task of story reading and general tomfoolery! 

There were many things I enjoyed about this pattern and some that didn't work so well for me, the pieces for some of the animals are very small and tricky to sew together however they do come together really quickly and the animals are all so different and really effective when put together. You can read the full story here if you missed it.

Clearly I'm a sucker for animals and a glutton for punishment because I just can't get enough of these Elizabeth Hartman patterns. My current adventure is the charming Lloyd and Lola

I started a couple of weeks ago making their faces, I find it easier to make all the same sections in one go rather than completing 1 animal at time before starting the other one, 

They were the smallest parts and the fiddliest, they also took the longest to put together but after that the bodies sprang up in a jiffy, I actually got both done in 1 afternoon when Tom was out and still managed to do 2 loads of washing and make diner. Totally got this wife in training stuff nailed!

Last but not least the legs went on and then the 'fun part' of quilting commenced. I've only just got that completed this week as we had our amazing 2 week holiday and then our engagement party and all the planning and carry on that goes with it, hence my slight delay in getting a new post up!

This is a bit of a secret project so there are parts of it that I can't reveal just yet but so far they are coming together nicely and the quilting has worked really well, I tried to be brave and go for the whole quilt approach a very basic diagonal line but still out of my comfort zone! Do you have a preference to design when whole quilting? Do you even do that? Let me know your preferred quilting method, I am always looking for new things to try out.

Speaking of new things...... these are a few I have got my eye on and am currently working out fabrics/ideas for

A mix of designs and ideas and totally different from what I would normally be drawn to, but I've always loved the idea of sampler quilts and those with a mix and match feel to them. I've never worked in these kinds of colors either so that in itself will be challenging!

If you've taken on any new challenges lately or would like to join me on mine I'd love to hear from you! Get in touch and lets make it happen!

Happy Quilting
Kerry xx

Wednesday, 16 August 2017


A Brilliant Day Out.....

Did you go to Festival? This year was my 6th year! It's better than Christmas I swear it, I've started saving for next year already. We had the usual cohort of myself, Kerry Q and Aunty Gail but also the added bonus of Carrie...a festival virgin if you can believe it! We set off (not so) bright and early at our usual time of 6:30am arriving just before 9 for breakfast and a planning session of where to go and when.

Our first stop is always Alice Caroline for the £1 a piece Liberty bins, but I have to say this year despite leap frogging of a sea of grannies to get to the front of the table, we left empty handed! A first in 6 years! There just wasn't the variety or the quality this year, most of them were very dull colors and none of the traditional 'Liberty' prints that we love so much, a very disappointing start!

That's not to say we didn't shop til we dropped!

The top photo are just some pretty bits I couldn't leave behind when I visited Purple Stitches (the second time!) the second are some with a tribal vibe that I am going be mixing in with my Travelling Quilt Bee blocks. If you missed the first installment of that adventure, you can find it here.

Next up an array of bright and bold Kona Solids sourced from the wonderfully helpful and exceptionally patient ladies at Simply Solids, teamed with a handful of fat quarters I picked up at The Cotton Patch from a variety of designers including Kaffe Fasset and Tula Pink. They are going to be used for a custom order I have had for something fit for an Indian Princess, who will be celebrating 70 years of wonderful life! I've got a couple of ideas but can't wait to get started on this one!

The second photo is a selection of fat quarters I bought simply because I loved the cool and calming mint and grey combo as they sat there calling to me in the boxes. I added the right hand side collection to them as I was walking around because I thought they complimented it well. I didn't have an original plan or use for them to start with, they just called my name! However I stock piled my good old favorites Kona Snow and Shadow and am now thinking that these will be used for my version of Summer Sampler 2017.

Of course it wouldn't be a successful festival trip if I didn't add to my collection of "One days", so above is my haul. You may have spied the brilliant new book by Stuart Hillard,it is fab there are so many gorgeous blocks in there that can be used literally in 100 quilts. He could not have been nicer to meet, we spent several minutes talking weddings, as he very recently tied the knot and just look at this little love note I got.....

There so many beautiful quilts on display, I always feel very inspired when I go to festival, I took as many picture as I could of the ones that spoke to me, enjoy!

There were a couple of real howlers as well some of which were judges choices, I know everyone has a difference in opinion of what makes something good and I really can appreciate all the work that goes in to making these quilts, but I did have several "Really??" moments. Makes me hopeful for one day when I am feeling brave enough to enter something into one of these shows!

Let me know what you thought if you went along, I always love to hear from my quilty pals!

Happy Quilting 
Kerry xx