Thursday, October 30, 2014

I Can Do Purple

Back here I went on a bit about how I didn't really like the colour purple.  And, as I mentioned then Aotearoa Quilters have a purple 12x12 challenge, with the deadline 21 November.  The entries will be displayed in Palmerston North during the Manawatu Quilt Symposium early next year.

In between other stuff I've been working on a couple of purple pieces (maybe more!) and I also got a little side-tracked ...

I had a bit of a clean up and came across a newsletter from Nancy's, which included a picture of a cute little sewing machine from a blog (  Well I just had to have a go ... this did mean ferretting through the kids lego and finding most pieces, however, a few substitutes were required.

Back to the purples, playing with different techniques ...

It isn't too late to create your own wee purple master piece, the challenge is also open to non-Aotearoa Quilters members.

The full instructions for the lego sewing machine appear here.

Monday, October 27, 2014

A Couple of Quilt Shows

Recently I managed to see two quilt shows within days of each other.  The first was Wellington Quilters Quild exhibition at the Portrait Gallery.

Portrait Challenge quilts

one of the raffle baskets -
a friend won this and lucky me scored the freezer paper!

Maybe in a later post I'll feature some of my favourite quilts, including who made them, etc.  While I do have plenty of photos, they only have a number beside each quilt so to work out the quilt name and maker you need to go through the exhibition booklet! and that's if the number is readable from the photo!! 

Anyway on to the second show, this was Cotton On Quilters at the Wanganui Girls' College hall in Wanganui.  This was a lovely exhibition with a relaxed feel to it and there were merchants!

Their featured quilter, Griet Lombard, had a fantastic selection of quilts. These were displayed on a stage so getting up close was easy and mostly you could see the backs.  Pictures were allowed (I did check - several times).  I had seen a few of the quilts before at other exhibitions or in the NZ Quilter magazine, I spent quite awhile enjoying them.
selection of Griet Lombard's quilts
Block a Day

Block a Day - detail
All You Ever Wanted to Know About Friendship -
used teabags in memory of all the cups of tea shared with friends

Winter Garden
Winter Garden - closeup
Selection of journal covers

Sunset at Waitarere Beach

Enjoy your Labour Day for those in NZ.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Count Down

The Manawatu Quilt Symposium is in January.  The deadline for quilt entries is the beginning of November.  My entry forms are finished and posted.  

The deadline is actually before the 1st as the entries need to be posted via snail mail with the images of the quilts printed and on CD - entering online is so much easier!   I don't envy those who have to enter in the details from all those handwritten forms - I did try to write neatly!

I struggled with one of the artist statements. I was sort of playing with a technique and the quilt just evolved, there were times when I almost stopped as I didn't think it was working.  Once I'd trimmed it to size and cut away the binding it looked OK, so I kept going.  

A week or so ago the letters detailing our class choices arrived.  I'm attending Betty Busby's class 'Artistic Yardage' which is painting on silk  - something I'm keen to try. The other class is Rosalie Dace's 'Earth, Wind and Fire'. Rosalie was here in Wellington a few years ago and I missed her talk, which apparently was amazing and a friend has never let me forget that I didn't go!

Better get on and look at the class requirements - usually involves a google search for things that we can't get in NZ easily or items that have completely different names.

Friday, October 17, 2014

My very own quilt

Not so long ago some quilting friends made me a quilt.

They seemed surprised when I requested a traditional quilt.  My reasoning was that I'd probably never make one for myself and why would I want another art quilt!

The quilt is now on our bed and I love it (and so does the fluffy cat who often has dirty paws!).

Only briefly did I try and guess who made which blocks - I was so wrong with my initial guesses that I'm not going to try again.

Sunday, October 12, 2014


Below is a photo of the completed and signed banner hanging at the Rawleigh Hockey Tournament in Wanganui last week.  
After four days of great hockey the Wellington 'under 13b' team came home with the trophy.  The banner was a success as well, thanks to enough eyelets and cable ties it stayed in place during a range of weather!

banner in place - maybe it could have been a bit bigger!!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Almost a Quilt

My current project is a banner for my daughter's rep hockey team.  Now banners aren't usually like a quilt - well this one is - three layers of fabric stitched together, just no batting. 

After volunteering to make the banner my first thoughts were to use paint - I hadn't quite worked out how I'd create stencils so big and what fabric to use.  Searching local fabric stores - the best I could find was black calico - not very inspiring.  

During a visit to Nancys I mentioned to Mary what I needed to do and it is thanks to her for the suggestion to use layers of fabric and cut away the top.  That was it - I was off - only problem was to find some suitable fabric - last option Pete's Emporium.  After spending a while ferretting around their fabric - for those that don't know Pete's Emporium their fabric is stacked randomly and in a rather crowded fashion.  I found some sturdy black nylon and just the right yellow, for Wellington colours, raincoat-like nylon.  

Before going large scale (1.5m x 1m), I created a prototype.  


For the letters I used Microsoft Word, printed the letters as an outline, pinned the paper to the layers of fabric, stitched along the lines, ripped the paper away and carefully cut (only one minor snip in the wrong place) away the black top layer revealing the yellow below.   I had four layers, as my plan was to have the banner double sided, this quickly changed.  Mostly because of the bulk.

paper pattern

A hint: in Word underline each letter so when the letters are taped together just match the horizontal and vertical lines of the underlines and the letters will line up nicely.  

paper partly removed

I'd used the underlines so I could line up the horizontal lines and it was a happy accident to discover that matching the vertical lines meant the letters were correctly spaced!


To create the final pattern I again used Word - the big letters are 550 point.  After printing the pages, I taped them together and then taped them to the fabric. Changing the needle on my machine to a denim needle, stitched along the lines.  For the first letter I carefully turned the fabric as I sewed around each corner.  I only did that once!!  The rest of the letters were stitched free motion, yah for all that quilting practice!  The nylon doesn't seem to fray so just a few rounds of straight stitching was enough.

Almost finished ...

...  just need to finish the edges and add some eyelets.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Out and About

The World of Wearable Art (WOW) is currently on in Wellington.  Performing in the show are a group of Shaolin Monks.  The 14 monks, with the youngest only ~11 years old, are from a monastery in Zhengzhou, in eastern China. 

They have been a few free peformances around the city.  The kids and I watched them at Midland Park.

We were right up close ...

Click here for a video of their performance.