A Reproduction WIP (Work in Progress)

Some time ago, I purchased the pattern Queen Square by Sue Ambrose. (A Somerset Patchwork pattern  www.somersetpatchwork.com.au )

I thought this would be an excellent design to use for all the reproduction fabrics I had been collecting.

Queen Square pattern

Queen Square pattern

As you can see from the photo, there are 20 main blocks, comprising three different designs, and two borders.  While some quilters like a totally scrappy look, I prefer a bit of uniformity, which you will notice in my colour/fabric selection.

To construct the blocks I have used a combination of different techniques, including English paper piecing, needle turn applique and tacking over freezer paper. Aurifil Cotton Mako Ne40 and Ne50 threads are suitable for these tasks and enable me to stitch with (almost) invisible stitches. I have used my light-box to trace designs as well as using a placement overlay. You can read a description of the overlay method in my earlier post  http://alwaysquilting.wordpress.com/2012/09/13/design-transfer-dilemma/ 

Queen Square 001

Tracing the design using my light-box.

Queen Square

Placing the applique pieces using a design overlay.

The first block looks like this.

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Block one in construction.

…..and this.

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The first block completed.

The second block design  has twelve blocks, four each of three different colourways.

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Preparing the hearts by tacking onto freezer paper

The finished blocks look like this…

Queen Square 008

Second block version one.

And this…

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Second block version two.

And this…

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Second block version three.

I have not yet completely made the third block, but have prepared all the components by tacking them onto freezer paper and joining them together.  In the picture you can see that I have placed them on the background fabric.  As I sew I will remove the tacking and papers.

Queen Square 001

Third block. The outer ring is pinned ready to sew,. The inner ring is just sitting in place so that I could see how it would look.

This kind of project is a lot of work, but I really enjoy the hand sewing, and it is certainly satisfying seeing it all come together.

Keep watching this blog and I will post more pictures of my Reproduction WIP as I work towards its completion.

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Spolit on Mothers' Day (Mothers' Day Spoils)

Many of the gifts I am given are related to quilting, and this Mothers’ Day was no exception.  I received two beautiful quilting books.  (I must admit, I did have a hand in their purchase, but my family members are all well-trained and quite happy to indulge me!)

One of the books I received is Di Ford-Hall’s “Primarily Quilts”.  I have long been a fan of Di’s patterns and when I heard that she was publishing a book I was eager to own a copy.

Camera file May 2013 326

The book is published by Quiltmania, (www.quiltmania.com) and is beautifully set out with lots of photos and text in both French and English.

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A look inside the book.

The book has 240 pages, containing  16 of Di’s patterns, so there are plenty of quilts to tempt me, and yes, there are several I would like to make! The quilts are inspired by nineteenth century quilts and use techniques which include hexagons, broderie perse,  fussy cutting, hand and machine piecing and lots of applique. (Quilting heaven). I am pleased that all patterns and templates are full size so there is no need to enlarge, and the three large pull-out pattern sheets all seem very clear.

Now I must confess that one of my UFOs is a quilt made from a Di Ford pattern, but one which is not in the book. It is “Homage to Sally Ann” which I began over five years ago and stitched while on a 15 week trip around the eastern half of Australia.  I came back from my holiday, but Sally Ann appears to have left on one….and no progress has been made for a long time.

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The incomplete centre block.

The original quilt was on a cream background with mid to deep pinks and burgundy flowers, and I have also seen Helen Hayes Sally Ann quilt which is on a vibrant red background.  As you can see, mine is different again, being on a pale aqua background with coral, gold and brown flowers.

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One of the corner blocks.

Aurifil Cotton Mako 50 weight thread (the finest weight) is my choice for the needleturn applique I use in this project.

And now that Sally Ann has reappeared I might have to add the odd flower or two!

As for the other book I received on Mothers’ Day, I’ll write about that in a future blog post.

Now Sally Ann, where were we….?

Tuesday Treats: Dear Jane

Do you love working with small blocks with lots of parts?  or

Are you horrified by the thought of 4″ blocks made up of 42 pieces? or

Are you simply fascinated by the thought of making a quilt with 160 or more small blocks but are not going to be tempted?

Either way, the Dear Jane Quilt Exhibition is the place to be this weekend.

The Dear Jane Quilt Exhibition is being held at the Box Hill Town Hall, Whitehorse Road, Box Hill (Melbourne)

The Dear Jane Quilt Exhibition is being held at the Box Hill Town Hall, Whitehorse Road, Box Hill (Melbourne)

The Exhibition will be open from Friday 8 to Sunday 10th, from 10am to 4 pm each day.

There will be at least 58 Dear Jane quilts on display, mostly from the Melbourne area but some have been entered from regional Victoria and from interstate, so the exhibition should be quite varied.

In addition to the Dear Jane quilts, the Australian Quilters Association will  also exhibit 15 to 20 Reproduction  Quilts, made by  members, as the background setting for a collection of antique garments (dresses,night attire,lace etc) and period items.

There will also be a Market Hall, in conjunction with the exhibition, where you will find books, threads and vintage fabrics.

Our Cotton Mako’ 50 is the perfect “go to” thread for making small blocks and miniature piecing,  so we have arranged for Aurifil threads to be represented in the Market Hall.

Look for our pre-packed sets of Cotton Mako

Look for single spools or treat yourself to one of our pre-packed sets of Cotton Mako

We will have a good selection of Cotton Mako’ colours available for purchase from the Needles & Pins stand.

Entry to the exhibition will be $7 per head, and morning and afternoon tea will be available for purchase.

For more information about the exhibition.