Des sacs, des sacs et encore des sacs…

Il y a deux ans, Suzanne m’a donné le patron pour un sac ingénieux qu’elle avait fait.  C’est un sac que l’on peut replier pour faire un genre de petit porte-feuille.  Je me suis dit que j’aimerais bien en faire moi-même pour en donner en cadeau.  Je me suis donc mise à faire des sacs pour donner à des amies pour leur anniversaire, ou pour donner aux professeurs de mes enfants à la fin de l’année scolaire.  J’ai essayé de les personnaliser pour qu’ils représentent la personne à qui je le donnais.  Et voilà que, deux ans plus tard, j’ai confectionné plus d’une dizaine de sacs, tous différents les uns des autres.  J’ai pris la plupart de mes sacs en photo, par contre, j’ai oublié quelques fois…  Je vous montre ce que j’ai fait:

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Cette année, ma fille est revenue de la dernière journée d’école en me disant que son professeur avait aimé son sac, mais qu’un autre élève en avait donné un pareil, mais celui-là était acheté!  Même si on n’a jamais assez de sacs, je devrai peut-être me trouver une idée un peu plus originale pour l’an prochain!

Natalie

Mini quilt challenge

My local modern quilt guild recently held a mini quilt challenge. Everyone got a magazine and had to make a quilt inspired from page 25, with the final quilt perimeter measuring 48-60 inches.

We recently moved, and in the upheaval I lost my page. I took the closest magazine handy and tore out page 25, which turned out to be about an upcoming museum exhibit on Pompeii. It’s mostly text. I decided to use my new found love of curves (ha!) to make an image to represent the eruption of Vesuvius.

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I have one process picture:

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I made a lot of little circles in different shades of grey for the smoke from the eruption. I sequentially sewn in a circle, then cut out space for the next circle.

The final quilt:

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I cut out the bottom of the mountain to look like people to be like the cavities they found left behind in the ash. I made it so these ‘cavities’ are looming over the unsuspecting city below. I have to say – cutting out those people and sewing along the edge was a pain. I started regretting it about a quarter of the way in. I am happy with the result though, now that it’s done!

I used quilting to emphasize the turbulence of the eruption as well as lines straight down the mountain to represent the pyroclastic surges thought to be responsible for most of the deaths.

The back is a print of boats to show the people who tried to help the inhabitants of Pompeii.

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I didn’t win, but I had a lot of fun trying to come up with ideas and making the quilt! I’m definitely up for the next challenge!

-Emily

Expecting a new quiltuplet!

We’re expecting a new quiltuplet in July! Of course it needs a quilt! Just in time for my baby shower, the remaining quiltuplets made a beautiful ‘I Spy’ quilt as a gift.

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I am amazed at the collection of different fabrics they were able to pull together. Animals, food, cartoon characters… there seems to be one of everything!

The back is cozy flannel owl print with a personalized label.

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And it looks great in the nursery!

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A cotton version of the owl print made an appearance in a Christmas gift from Michele.

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I know there will be many happy memories with this quilt! Thank you Quiltuplets!

-Emily

Spring quilting day!

It’s been awhile since the last post! I think we’ve all been busy, so it was nice to finally sit down together and get some sewing done. We all have our own WIPs, although some of us have been more productive than others (but we’ll see the results soon in later posts!). For my part, I’ve barely sewn a stitch in several months and I have a million projects on the go. That’s a bit of an exaggeration, but I do tend to start many projects and take awhile to finish.

Here is a project I started about 6 months ago when I decided to design a pattern with curves:

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I started with two layer cakes of Kate Spain’s Sunnyside fabric. I’ve made some progress on putting it together, but I’m learning very quickly that curves can be tedious!

There are many WIPs on the go, so I’ll do a quick tour:

Natalie was paper piecing a warm batik design.

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Michèle was working on a geometric design for an art quilt to submit for to an upcoming quilt show. The story behind this one is quite interesting, so I look forward to seeing it complete in an upcoming post!

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She was also making cupcakes for a special birthday we celebrated later that day.IMG_3158

Suzanne was working on a vibrant quilt made with Art Gallery fabrics.IMG_3153

Lise and Suzanne have also given their own twist on the same pattern.

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I love seeing how different two quilts turn out when done using different colour schemes. I can’t wait to see how they turn out!

Lise was busy preparing her finished quilts for entry into the quilt show.

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She is now the most productive member of our little group! Each of these quilts will be featured in later posts, along with the other quilts she is working on.

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She used to help everyone else on their quilts, but it hasn’t really been until the last year that she started to make her own and now she is probably responsible for half of our total output!

We had a great afternoon of chatting, sewing, cutting fabric, snacking and baking. In the end, the only finished project was the cupcakes.

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-Emily

 

 

My Stash!!

Yes, I am embarrassed to say that my stash is getting bigger despite my determination to only use my own fabric. Since December, I have gone to:

– A quilt store to pick up batting for my mother. While I was there, I saw so many original prints. They just hopped into by basket. I am also trying to build up my stash in the colours of which I have few. (Well, few depends on the beholder.) And what a selection of unique books!

– A big quilting fabric sale at a different shop.  I am planning on making another quilt for the cottage. This time, the colours are in the shades of water and sky. Despite the fact that blue is my favourite colour and thus the largest of my stashes, I actually needed a few more shades for my quilt.  (Yes, I did finish  my first quilt for the cottage last week. Today is very sunny but since the temperature is -28 C (-18 F), it will have to be a later post.)

– Yet a different quilt shop to pick up fabric for my sister. I was honestly doing her a favour. I seem to be low on plain fabric so this was a good chance to pick up some fabric with warmer colours. But alas, there was a sale on some fabrics.  I really did get a good price.

– Back to the second quilt store. I was just in to get a few fabrics for my challenge quilt. Oh, I have not told you about the challenge in our guild. Our guild is having a big quilt show in May and of course they need lots of quilts to display. One of the categories for display is the quilt challenge. This year, the challenge is that you can make any size and type of quilt you want (bed size, runner, wall hanging, clothes) but you need to include the participation of someone that does not quilt. I have heard from others and on blogs that you learn much from being pushed to do things that are not in your comfort zone. So, isn’t is great that I decided to take on this challenge! Well, back to my original reason for going to the quilt store. I needed to get some fabrics for this quilt. But when I got to the store, there was a big event that afternoon. Yes, there were several different areas displaying different quilting techniques. How cool is that! I even had to go home and come back with my daughter. Well, I was a happy shopper again.

If you have not noticed, I have a weakness for fabric. Beautiful fabric!!

Now to know me is to understand that I am very good at budgeting, saving and being organized in my finances.  So if you consider my stash as my bank account, you might also appreciate that I might hoard some of my more beautiful fabric, especially when I have a small piece. I tend to imagine that I will make something so beautiful with it, that the colours will inspire me and that the finished product will be wonderful. I think that I dream in Technicolor. Or perhaps, I should say technifabricolour!

The other day, I was working on a project that was not grand, that was going to be washed very often and that was probably not going to be admired a whole lot. I was auditioning quite a few fabrics. And then, I auditioned a fabric that I have been admiring and of course hoarding. I loved the colours of my fabric. This fat quarter was going to be the inspiration for a quilt. The cathedral window pattern, which I have yet to try, is one of my must try patterns. But over all, I saw much potential from this little piece. Hmm! Well I kept on auditioning fabrics, but kept on coming back to this fabric as it seemed to brighten up the project.

So here is my fabric. It might not be much to you, but I had a soft spot for it. So, I cut up in pieces. What would possess me use a fabric that I really liked for a something that was not grand?

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Stay Tuned!

Michele

 

 

 

The Gift of Textiles

What could be a better gift? Or a more difficult one to choose by a non-quilter, given the unknown (and expanding) size of Emily’s stash?

Happily, our non-quilting (but sympathetic to the obsession) bro M gifted us some lovely fat quarters this Christmas.

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Stéphanie’s are the beautiful array of Kona solids (left), and Emily’s are the polka dots (right).

Stéphanie also received, from the parents this time, some fat quarters of Shweshwe fabric, made by Da Gama Textiles. It has a neat history of being starched for shipment by sea, and so is very stiff (and smells oddly perfumey). Da Gama Textiles explains the history and process on their site.

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Although not a textile, Emily received some hide, with the intention of beading and hand-sewing some moccasins. We can’t remember if it is moose or deer, but either way is soft and will be a good project between quilts!

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Bought with the intention of drying dishes, Michèle was gifted some linen tea towels, made by Rain Goose Textiles. They were declared too nice for such a menial life, and will probably be re-purposed as pillows. Go figure.

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Michèle also received a beautiful woven wool table runner (or shawl) from a trip to a weaving cooperative in Peru.

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Stéphanie, taking pity on poor quilt-less M, made him placemats (…mini quilts. sort of) for Christmas. The backs are a linen-cotton blend with a neat feel and look, a bit more rugged than just cotton. The rest of the fabric (bought at the same time but not a set so of unknown identity) is cotton, made from 5 fat quarters. It was close with that amount, and she actually ran out of binding for the last placemat but he didn’t seem to notice.

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For a family friend, Stéphanie made a trivet. (I love love love making trivets.) They are fun to choose the fabric, have simple quilting, and are finished so quickly! She used Australian Aboriginal fabrics by M & S Textiles, specifically “Wild Bush Flowers Purple” by Layla Campbell and “Yalke Blue” by June Smith along with some batik print on the front, and again an Australian Aboriginal print on the back with an unknown name (should really start labelling the stash….). There are 5 layers of batting inside, but in retrospect, should have used an old ironing board cover we have to make it more heat resistant. It was quilted pretty simply with a walking foot, even the circle.

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Michèle also caught the trivet bug, making a bone themed pot-grabber for a friend working in Diagnostic Imaging (X-rays). The bone fabrics come from a Hallowe’en line, but the eggplant purple binding will let it be used in any season.She used the old ironing board cover as batting. The pockets make it perfect for grabbing hot dishes! (Pictures coming soon)

Michèle made a beautiful basket using the “Divided Basket” pattern from Noodlehead and fabrics from the Riley Blake Designs’ “Fancy Free” line and Kona solids among others. It is lined with a very stiff interfacing, and will be perfect to store cloths or diapers.

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Not only that, but we were surprised by gifts from L for each of us to take home; a Christmas table runner for Michèle, and appliquéd reindeer pillows for Emily and Stéphanie.

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So I guess you can understand why we’ve been so absent from posting in the rush for Christmas! We hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and holiday, and look forward to sharing more (and perhaps more frequently!) in the New Year!

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All our best,

Stéphanie, Emily, and Michèle

Even more baby time!

I posted a few months ago about two babies quilts that I was working on, and a way to speed up the time it takes to set up the long-arm machine. Unfortunately, the binding still takes just as long so it’s taken awhile to get the projects finished. The quilts are finally complete, photographed and passed along to two very special babies!

Here are the front and back of the first quilt:

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I used Bottom Line thread in light blue for both quilts, following a pantograph pattern of swirls for the quilting. I thought this would soften the straight edges of the geometric patchwork patterns.

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Here are the front and back of the second quilt:

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I bound both quilts with a striped fabric – I really like the effect around the edges!BabyQuiltChair2

Details of the front and back show the swirly quilting:

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I love making baby quilts! It’s a great opportunity to use bright colours and experiment with new ideas with a smaller quilt size!

 

Happy quilting!
Emily