Sunday, 29 March 2015

A Picture for Sunday - The Storm


I took this picture in a parish church in Herefordshire over a year ago, and only today have I worked out which gospel passage it illustrates - the calming of the storm, as recounted in the gospel of St. Matthew.  The view of the town in the background, and the fact that I thought Jesus was standing on the shore, really threw me.  We have had strong winds today, which must have helped the answer dawn on me. 

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Free Motion Mavericks - Week 37 - Making a Start


This is the sum total of my free motion quilting this week - one leaf and a few swirls.  I am making version 2 of the red and cream crib quilt I made a couple of weeks ago, but this time in shades of pink.


The pink is in shades reminiscent of raspberry ice cream, and this print has little curled leaves similar to the swirls I like quilting to fill in empty space between stems.  Before starting the free motion work, I quilted straight lines down the strip of squares to batten down the seam allowances, which have a habit of bumping up after quilting.


It has been a rather hectic week.  This was the state of my sewing corner last Friday when the window fitters were at work, with dust sheets covering the book shelf on the right, and the 15K treadle on the left.  All the hand machines are hiding behind the curtains beneath the counter, and when it came to cleaning up earlier this week, I ended up hauling them out to look them over.  I took out my 1927 Singer 99K to test it for straight line quilting, and it passed with flying colours. Perhaps the pressure on the foot is adjusted to the ideal level, but for some reason none of the other machines do such a good job.

So after a very unquilty week, I am looking forward to seeing everyone else's projects.



blogbutton photo peacockfmq025_zpse5bceb10.jpg



Here goes for week 37...

Many thanks to Quilt Musings, Maartje, Carole, Hilary, Katy, Julie, Myra, LeeAnna, Sophie and Andree for linking up last time.

If you love free motion quilting, whether you are a beginner just taking the plunge, or you have reached the stage where you can do ostrich feathers with your eyes shut and still achieve perfect symmetry, then please link up.

Remember, FMQ is FMQ, whether your machine was made last week, or it is older than your granny.

Here are the very easy and slightly elastic rules:-

1.  Link up with any recent post, ideally from the last week but within the last month, which features a free motion quilting project, whether it is a work in progress or a finish.

2.  Link back to this post in your own post and/or grab the linky button for your blog's sidebar.
  .
3.  Visit as many of the other participants as possible and say hello in the comments box.

4.  The link up will remain open for four days, from midnight to midnight GMT for the long weekend, Friday to Monday.

So far quilters from USA, England, Wales, Australia, Canada, Germany, Holland, New Zealand, France and Macau have taken part.  The first participant from each new country will get a special mention the following week.

Linking up with Kelly's blog My Quilt Infatuation for Needle and Thread Thursday
and Angie's blog A Quilting Reader's Garden for WIPs Be Gone
and Sarah's blog Confessions of a Fabric Addict for Whoop Whoop Friday.

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Appliqué - Sew First, Cut Last


This illustration is in another of my old books, Dressmaking and Needlework by Catherine A. Place, published in 1953.  I bought it a few months ago, readily parting with a very small amount of cash when I saw how excellent the diagrams are, line drawings with red detail.

It was only yesterday that I spotted these illustrations, showing the method of appliqué recommended for adding decoration to clothes.  In brief, place the material to be applied on top of the background material, transfer the design onto the material (it doesn't say how), then stitch the two layers together, as shown in red above. 


Once all the stitching is completed, trim away the excess from around the stitching.

This all sounds strangely familiar.  It must be about four years ago that I thought long and hard about how best to do appliqué using a straight stitch sewing machine, and came up with the method I dubbed Vintage Sewing Machine Appliqué.  This is the first book that I have seen that shows a sew first, cut last method.  I knew the end result had a vintage look to it.  Having found these illustrations I feel somehow vindicated (the posh word for smug).

Linking up to Connie's blog Freemotion by the River for Linky Tuesday

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Pretty Pictures for Sunday - Solar Eclipse


Taken at 9.30 in the morning on Friday from our attic window.  We were treated to an 85 percent solar eclipse, with just some hazy cloud serving as a natural filter.  And the house shook too while I was taking the pictures - the window fitters were bashing out the old window from the bathroom below me, and it took me a minute or two to work out that I should listen to the rhythm of their banging and wait until they stopped to avoid camera shake.

It was tricky getting pictures of the sun without looking directly at it, just looking at the screen on the camera.  Some shots came out dark and moody...



... some were thin and hazy.




Then I realised that the crescent shape was showing up beside the main glare of the sun...




... and I also managed to get pictures showing two crescents, which is slightly weird.  I wish it were reflections in the clouds, but the mundane explanation is that it is the effect of taking pictures through a double glazed window.  

Update 24th March



Bob, my brother's brother-in-law, emailed this diagram to me today.  Thank you Bob!

Bob is in the USA and so missed this eclipse, and was slightly jealous when he saw my pictures.

All I can say is hooray for hazy cloud and double glazing, which all combined to make a triple filter for the photos.

Because I am a bit of a doughnut with the computer I couldn't transfer the image through the computer to the blog, I just took a photo of the computer screen, which explains the rather interesting tweedy texture to the diagram.  Bob no doubt could whip up another diagram explaining how the effect comes about, and I could take a photo of that too and post it here. This post could end up like a hall of mirrors.


Thursday, 19 March 2015

Free Motion Mavericks - Week 36 - Leaves and Berries



Chaos reigns.  Two young men have smashed out all our front windows, and tomorrow they will be doing the same in my sewing room.  The 85 year old metal frames had to go, and we can now look forward to fewer draughts and less condensation.  You never know, furry sewing machine handles might become a thing of the past.  I will miss the history, though.  I was always very proud of the fact that we lived in a house that still had the hooks for hanging up the blackout blinds.

The only free motion quilting I have done this week was a panel of leaves and berries, which will be part of the free motion sampler quilt I was working on months ago.  It was nice and easy to do, but I'm not convinced I picked the best colour thread.  Errors of judgment are allowed on sampler quilts.



blogbutton photo peacockfmq025_zpse5bceb10.jpg



Here goes for week 36...

Many thanks to Heulwen, Maartje, Alison, Hilary, Linda, Mary, Teresa, Carole, Angie and Andree for linking up last time.

If you love free motion quilting, whether you are a beginner just taking the plunge, or you have reached the stage where you can do ostrich feathers with your eyes shut and still achieve perfect symmetry, then please link up.

Remember, FMQ is FMQ, whether your machine was made last week, or it is older than your granny.

Here are the very easy and slightly elastic rules:-

1.  Link up with any recent post, ideally from the last week but within the last month, which features a free motion quilting project, whether it is a work in progress or a finish.

2.  Link back to this post in your own post and/or grab the linky button for your blog's sidebar.
  .
3.  Visit as many of the other participants as possible and say hello in the comments box.

4.  The link up will remain open for four days, from midnight to midnight GMT for the long weekend, Friday to Monday.

So far quilters from USA, England, Wales, Australia, Canada, Germany, Holland, New Zealand, France and Macau have taken part.  The first participant from each new country will get a special mention the following week.

Linking up to Kelly's blog My Quilt Infatuation for Needle and Thread Thursday
and Angie's blog A Quilting Reader's Garden for WIPs Be Gone  
and Sarah's blog Confessions of a Fabric Addict for Whoop Whoop Friday.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Modern Needlecraft


This illustration of cushions is taken from the latest addition to my bookshelf, Modern Needlecraft, edited by Davide C. Minter.  This book is most definitely a gem, a 250 page illustrated encyclopaedia covering embroidery,crochet, knitting,millinery, handbags, dressmaking and household furnishings.



My copy is a 1951 reprint, although the book was first published in 1931.  Evidently too much had happened in the intervening years for anyone to care about the fashions in the illustrations being way out of date.  If anything, I think it adds to the book's charm.



This slip pattern could be adapted for a slinky dress...



... and this little dress is timeless.  Such a shame that the little girl has been given a cut-and-paste adult face.  I must scour the rest of the book and see if I can find who it really belongs to.

The book cost me less than I would spend on tea and cake in a cafe.  If anyone wants to do an internet book search, they might just find themselves a copy.  It would be money well spent.

Linking up with Connie's blog Freemotion by the River for Linky Tuesday

Sunday, 15 March 2015

A Pretty Picture for Sunday - St. Patrick


A beautiful stained glass window to commemorate a great saint.

Welcome to Leah Fielding and The Melt Lady, the latest followers - thank you for joining!

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