Spring, please

It’s still bitter cold, but there is hope in the park this morning. Easter Monday combined with April Fools provided much excitement yesterday, as eggs were eaten and fish were unobtrusively stuck on each other’s backs.             Spring201314

Today offers a rare moment of calm to write a post here, and show off what we got up to the other weekend with The Ladies during our 24 hours sewing fest. Three ladies playing with fabric, and I learned new skills on Miss E’s longarm, tucked up under the roof of her little house (how on earth did it get up there, up two flights of old stairs?).Longarm5

So many wiggles later, this square scrap quilt turned into this lovely single quilt, with bits of Miss E’s fabric from her impressive stash added either end to make it fit over a bed nicely. A huge jumble of fabric, from Grandad’s shirts to my sister-in-law’s dark pink cotton trousers, with bits of children’s dresses and clothes that no longer fit a very small neighbour. It was the perfect quilt to start practising on because uneven wiggles don’t show up! The loopy-loopy quilting gave it wonderful texture, though. I added the scrappy binding a couple of weeks ago, one evening.



The next quilt I did on the longarm was the Double Hourglass that we all made last Autumn at the Patchwork in the Peaks retreat. It was fun to finally finish it because it had been left all crumpled up in a large blue bag while Real Life took over.



The back is a green sheet from a charity shop belonging to the ‘Centre Social Protestant’. It shows up the quilting beautifully, and I love it almost as much as the front. What could possibly go wrong with lots and lots of greeeeeen?


The last quilt I finished quilting, this time on my domestic sewing machine, was the long-running Liberty squares quilt, using a mix of Miss E’s Liberty lawn cotton, and two charm packs I had that seemed to dilute it all rather nicely. I added white to make it larger, on point, and had my first experience of quilting to marked lines, using a stencil and washable ink. I was pleased with the result. Thanks to Miss G for suggesting adding frames on either side to balance the design. I’m pleased with the result. The batting (wadding) is wool, so it is unbelievably fluffy, light and warm. The photos, as usual, don’t do it justice, but at least it wasn’t pouring with rain in the park…



I love the scrappy binding made from leftovers! All binding attached “back to front” (i.e. sewing it on the back first, then turning it to the front to attach by machine), with minimum fuss.


So that is a huge pile of unfinished quilts off my list, and now I can dive in to new projects. I am meant to be making something in the theme of ‘geometry’. But surely most quilting is geometric, isn’t it? Even the wacky free improv stuff is pretty geometric, so I will have to do some thinking to come up with an original idea… Happy Spring. I do hope it comes soon. JJ

About pragmaticpatchwork

Academic and quilter
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