Wednesday 31 August 2016

My mind is moving faster than my fingers today!

Since Sunday I've managed one more quarter circle block.I don't plan to devote a post to each and every one; they'll all start to blur after a while- but since I'm not that productive still, here is the latest pic.

Up till now I've just been doing what I fancied each time, but pretty I'll have to start thinking a bit more about how I want them to join up.  Next thing on my list is to make some little crosses that I might be able to use as fillers.

On another tangent, I am thinking about Sherri Lynn Wood's #makedoquilt challenge on instagram.  You have a year to make a quilt, using only scrap and/or recycled fabrics.  I know, yes I really do, that I have enough going on already, but my 365 days of circles finishes at the start of November which (heaven help me) isn't that far off now and that would make space for another project, maybe...probably.  I'm not doing much now except pondering my existing stash of second-hand clothing to see what I already have.  Right now, I like this lot, though there's also a very flowery pile that's calling my name...

Linking up with Sew Fresh Quilts today for Lets Bee Social.

Sunday 28 August 2016

Slow but steady

I have finally made a back for the circles and stripes quilt, so one of my slow Sunday tasks, I hope, is to sandwich it ready for quilting.  In the meantime I have continued to quilt the scrappy quilt top. One of the funny things (for me, at least) about a quilt made of discernible blocks is that you can tell exactly how far you have got with the quilting, so this is block 12 of 70.   I will keep this ticking over once I start the circles, just trying to do a square to two each week.

I'm also expecting to finish my hand-sewn skirt today; this is the waistband going on, so very nearly there.

Friday 26 August 2016

Curves and strips

I'm chugging along nicely now, interruptions notwithstanding.  I'm making a mental note to spend less time whinging about the things that cause the disturbances and just get on with it! 

I've got four of this circle-y blocks done now and am getting better at it, I think. They take a while, but four is enough to stick on the floor and play around with, which is always encouraging.

They can look like this:

or this:

or this.

Lots of options, even at this early stage.  

Note too, that I ironed this time!

Linking up with NinaMarie for Off the Wall today.

Tuesday 23 August 2016

AHIQ- share your improv #12

I seem to have started myself on a tricky path.  These curvy blocks are taking ages and don't always work quite how I want them to.  I could be foundation piecing them, I guess, but don't seem to want to make all the decisions at the start, so am fumbling my way through the piecing.

Here's a less successful example:

Note to self: really should iron before taking photographs. 

Working with curves leaves lots of odd shaped little scraps so I am trying to use what I have rather than cutting straight from my yardage (or half-yardage).  I would usually try to include scrap I generated along the way, but it seems particularly important here since I don't want to get halfway through and discover I don't have any biggish pieces.

Monica has pointed out that people clicking through to the link-up from her blog will miss either Ann or me each time so I'm adding this post below.  Just explaining in case you think I've lost my marbles. :-)

Monday 22 August 2016

Wise after the event

Do you ever make something and then think "this would have been so much easier if I hadn't done x/or had done y?" Well that's where I am today.  I've been so desperate to achieve even a tiny bit of sewing before my head explodes and that I have done.  I have one circle-y block that I am happy with (it looks like there are horrid creases but that's just where the cat slept on it; it looks fine when it's ironed).

Unfortunately I've now got an inkling of something I might want to do that I've made a whole lot harder by not thinking just one tiny step further ahead.  I may try it anyway or I may just grind my teeth and wait a week or two and then sew in a calmer atmosphere.

A reminder, too that it's AHIQ link up tomorrow, for all those of you who are managing to sew through the summer.

Linking up today with Love Laugh Quilt and Patchwork Times 

Sunday 21 August 2016

New shirts/old shirts

Today I'm chugging on with my quilting, but thought I'd spare you yet another shot of it.  I'm also keeping on top of the 365 circles, and picked up a couple of shirts this week that I think might help when I run out of fabric from the original three.  

The first is this check. Some parts of it are very pink, but I would just discard those.

The second is this stripe, which looked in the shop like it would be spot on, but which I don't like so much laid out with the squares.

I do, however, like it like this.

I'm not at the point where I have to make firm decisions yet; I have cut the last of the blue shirt into squares, but there is a surprising amount of the other two left still.  But it's good to have this simmering away somewhere in the back of my brain.

As always I'm linking up with Kathy for Slow Sunday Stitching.

Thursday 18 August 2016

Keeping track

Given that my floor space is still otherwise occupied I am taking more photos than usual as I play, to try and keep track of things that I have to pick up and put away, so here are two things I've thought about today.  I am wondering about ways of combining the vertical, horizontal and diagonal lines from the flag with the quarter circle block.

I've tried this:

and this:

Maybe these look a bit too heavy and the proportions of the diagonal strip aren't right, but I'm not sewing anything new until I'm sure I want it, otherwise at some point I'm pretty much bound to run out of fabric.

Wednesday 17 August 2016

Changing plans

Finally some actual sewing is taking place here.  Mind you, what is happening is not at all what I was expecting. I spend a fair old time playing around with my sets of strips but nothing was sparking for me.  I know what my problem was: I couldn't get far enough away from the Union Jack.  While I'm taking my colours from the flag and probably some other bits, I don't want to be making copies, even improv ones.

So I fiddled around and looked back through my notebook and mind kept coming back to circles.  Bit of a theme going on still.  I have a couple of teeny doodles that I have been meaning to play with at some point and decided to see where they took me this morning.  (I'll take a photo of the doodles and post next time).

I got this:

I'm not sure this is quite what I want either, and it seems maybe a bit boring, but for now I'm going to keep heading in this direction. 

I might have kept going for a bit,but then this happened...

Yes, I could shift him, but experience suggests he would be happy to play that game for a lot long than I could take,so I am being grateful for the time I got and giving in gracefully today.

Linking up with Lorna for Let's Bee Social.

Monday 15 August 2016

Just cutting strips

Now I know it is August and things slow down at this time of year but I have to tell you I am getting kind of twitchy now.  I spent all of last week trying to find five minutes to finish making the back for my circles quilt so that I could sandwich it.  Have I got a quilt back? Nope.  I am no closer to getting it done,even though it is 90% pieced and I just need to add two little bits.  Every time I get it all out something happens - a cat, a kid, a man at the door, and the last time I was interrupted I bundled it unceremoniously together (and I do mean bundled, not carefully folded) and stuck it on top of a pile of boxes, where it is still sitting, untouched.

I am doing fine on my little twiddly bits of handwork: circles, skirt, quilting, but need to be doing just a tiny bit more.  

So, trying to be a realist, I am going to stick with small bits that don't require a floor for now.  The good side to this is that it means I have started cutting my lovely pile of red, white and blue.  I'm just cutting strips and piecing them into sets of three for now, but it will giving me something to work with in a while and it's very manageable practically.

Not masses to show, I know, but right now I'll take what I can get!

Linking up with Love Laugh Quilt for Monday Making and with Cooking Up Quilts for Main Crush Monday.

Saturday 13 August 2016

Saturday photos #74

I'm still on the Wirral, metaphorically at least.  Here are New Brighton lighthouse, complete and standing in the sea, and Leasowe lighthouse, standing on land and missing its top, along with a peep at the industrial landscape along the same coast, which I find strangely appealing.

Wednesday 10 August 2016

Considering the next move

I've done about two weeks now without piecing, just working slowly on bits and pieces, but now my brain is starting to itch. I don't anticipate being quick off the starting blocks with the next project but I have the germ of an idea I'd like to play around with so after I mowed the lawn this morning I used this an excuse to sit quietly and look at fabric.  Normally, I should say, I don't need a rest after lawn mowing, but my mower died yesterday halfway through the job and I had to do the rest with an old-fashioned, human-powered push mower.

Anyway...this is what I have pulled.  

I'm not sure if I've got this quite right yet: it probably needs one or two things added, one or two taken out.  Still it's something to be going on with.

Linking up with Let's Bee Social today.

Monday 8 August 2016

A quick gallop around my sewing table

Nothing happening on my metaphorical design wall, though things are stirring in the depths of my brain.  In the meantime I'm keeping things ticking over and making a few decisions.  

First up, the next quilt in the hoop will be the circles one with the colour definitions.  I had pretty much landed on the side of Quiet Quilt, which should by rights be next, but that would leave me quilting two circle-y ones in a row, which might prove a bit much so I'm going to shuffle them about.  
Here's a look at all my other little bits and pieces.

The next batch of shirt circles ready to go.  These are this week's as I'm all caught up now.

Another quilt back is being pieced, though, things being what they are it's not the one I'm going to need next!

I'm getting in a bit of quilting on this, unblogged, top.  It's a version of the Lego quilt: strips finished width 1" and is destined for someone who doesn't read the blog. 

Last, but not least, I'm making another Alabama Chanin garment, this time a skirt.

Despite my lack of a proper project I am linking up with Patchwork Times for Design Wall Monday and Love Laugh Quilt for Monday Making.

Saturday 6 August 2016

Saturday photos #73

I've just spent a few days out and about, so this week's photos reflect some of what I've been doing.  These photos were taken on the coast just north of Liverpool - at Formby and Crosby.  I've seen sand dunes, wide, open beaches, Anthony Gormley's Another Place and more besides. There have been lighthouses too, which I think I'll save till next time.

Since we somehow, inexplicably, findourselves in August already I am linking up again with Wandering Camera over at Soma's Whims and Fancies.

Friday 5 August 2016

Shirt circles

I am currently 9 circles behind, but have that 9 plus the rest of this week's prepped and ready to go.  I'm relaxed about catching up, as I deliberately took a break from these in order to  finish Walls (still not got a better name).

This is what I have to date:

My next job for this is to track down another shirt that will go with the three I'm using already: it's surprising how far a shirt will stretch but I will definitely need something extra, possibly by the end of the month.

Linking up with Audrey's monthly catch up for Quilty 365.