Saturday, 9 April 2011

Absent without leave

March just went, but I loved the quilt on my V and A calender.
 I must print out a quilt photo to cover this one up. It's the main quilt they used in the publicity last year. Ugly beyond words.
Spring has sprung and Rosie decided she could  hide in the bluebells coming up. This was last week. The weather here in England has been wonderful the last few days and now some are in flower.
The first of the camellias, and the sudden warmth has bought them all out.
I have been doing a bit of the appliqué on Esther's Blog, there are three blocks the same as this one to do. This is month 3 but I decided to get these done first as I'm not fond of doing the same thing over again and I shall 'reward' myself with block 2 which is similar but has a bird on it. I add this photo to show you how I do appliqué.

This is a case of don't do what I do because thousands of people will give you thousands of very good reasons why you shouldn't. That's fine but this works for me.

For the actual applique shapes I'm using the method Esther suggests using starch over freezer paper, but I double the freezer paper to make it more stiff.

I have traced the design directly onto the fabric using a Berol Handwriting  pen. I am confident it will wash out but don't take my word for it. (If you are in the UK there are some cheapie shops selling them which somehow don't seem to be the same ink, so try it first or buy them from WH Smith or another good supplier).

The other tool I use a lot are glue sticks. These particular ones in the photo are sold for children and are dirt cheap. They have the magical property of going on purple and clearing in about 30seconds. This means you can see where it's gone on. It washes out too. The manufacturers of glue sticks specially made for fabric say theirs are safe to use on fabric and others aren't. Well all I can say is I have never had a problem with a glue stick however cheap except if I have bought from somewhere with a low turnover they might be too dry. Click on the photo to enlarge to see everything is stitched down except the ring and the two leaves in the middle. That is how good it is for holding things in place.

After I have prepared the shape (Esther's method), I glue stick them into position. I will not prepare the whole block in one go, but prepare a few, sew them down, and do some more etc..

I'm stitching these on the machine with invisible Sew Art invisible thread using a blanket stitch. More on this in another post. I should be up and dressed, strimming the edge of the grass and doing a bit of pressure washing on the patio.


  1. I love your applique its coming on lovely, ive got to practise this too once I get my own little get away quilt room done.

  2. Looking fabulous as usual, I can't believe how much you've done...taking on 2 at once! Inspiring!

    I agree with you completely about the glue's just that I often find myself advising people to do as I say and not as I (privately) do....but I've never actually had a problem and dislike the pricey monopoly many 'safe' products play on us...but WHAT IF it goes horribly wrong for someone??? I couldn't bare that.

    And I do the same thing with my calendars was April for 6 months in my house last year, pictorally speaking...

  3. OMG I just enjoyed your pictures so much. I don't think I would get much quilting done either if I had such a bog beautiful yard. Thank you for the tour!

  4. What a lovely piece, love your calendar and that picture of Rosie amongst the grass!