Sunday, 22 February 2015

Di's Santa workshops

Di has been attending the two recent sewing days to teach her Santa workshop to those who would like to make one of these gorgeous figures.  I know it's only February, but I've heard that Christmas will be round again before you know it!  That's certainly true on my past experience!

Liz, along with myself, Bunty, Carol and Stephanie, was just there for a bit of sewing peace and friendly support.  She's supporting Paula by keeping her seat warm, while Paula sews stars on her Santa's boot cuffs.  

Here's Paula on her pre-warmed seat, making up Santa's coat.  I love his gold boots! 


Sian's week ahead of the game, and just putting the final touches to her Santa, who is very traditionally dressed.

Emily is assembling the coat on her Santa, and she's obviously enjoying the hand sewing.  Her Santa's gold outfit is to die for!

Here is Sue, concentrating hard.  I love the way everyone has chosen different Christmas-coloured outfits for their own idea of Santa.  This burgundy outfit is rich and smooth.  

Here is Emily's completed Santa, with friend.  She says she really enjoyed making him, which is just as well, as I can see her family and friends will be putting in their orders for their own Santa's as soon as they see him!  
Many thanks to Di for teaching this workshop and giving pleasure to so many people, and to Sian for organising all the sewing days! 

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Fiddle cushions

This month was another hands on session, to make fiddle cushions.  These cushions are a boon for people suffering from dementia, who often have restless hands.  These cushions or quilts, covered with tactile textures and objects occupy the hands and calm the mind. 

Sian worked hard to make 'kits' and instructions for people to make a cushion easily.  Each pack had the fabrics, plus cotton reels, ribbons, zips, buttons and all manner of things to fiddle with! 

She got so carried away with the cutting, that she had lots of fabrics left over!  I'm sure they will all be made up eventually. 

Lots of people had brought their machines and soon got going.  It's a good opportunity to chat to new (or old) friends. 

Gwyneth was ahead of the game, and brought one she had made earlier.  All that fringing is so tempting!

Sometimes circumstances conspire against you, and you don't manage to gather up your machine.  Sue, Betty and Margaret have taken packs to make up at home.

All noses are to the grindstone here!

Sian is just making sure everyone's happy with the instructions.  I think they were pretty clear. 

Fiona, in the centre of the photo, had come from a home in Husbands Bosworth.  (She had a sewing machine for Christmas, so we're keen to encourage her!). She wanted to make cushions, and will also be able to take some for her residents.  Result!

As usual, June had gone to town on the raffle prizes.  Valentine's fabric, ribbon and a chocolate heart lolly!  And I was one of the lucky winners!

Here are some of the completed fiddle cushions.  

And here, 

And here, 

And here is Julie's.  All great.  Then on to the show and tell.

This one is double sided - the same on both sides.  It's one of those blocks where you make back and front together, and then the blocks are ready quilted and can be easily joined together.  Gorgeous pastel choices. 

This is a Linus top finished by a kind soul.  The dark Xs are actually spotted navy and white, so aren't quite as imposing in reality.

Another Linus finish.  This is simply rail fence.  Three 6.5" x2.5" strips joined together, with two strips being shades of the same colour and the third strip a neutral.  The blocks are turned by 90 degrees to make the design.  Looks complicated, but is really very easy. 

This is my Grand Illusion top.  It was designed by Bonnie Hunter and is waiting for a yellow narrow border and another border.  Looking good so far!  I was hoping that Sian was bringing her completed top, so they could be seen together, but hers is on the long arm.  Maybe we'll get them together later.

A little handmade Linus top.  You can see the beautiful quilting on it. 

Some people made quilts for a Linus challenge and this is Liz's.  This dog has its own quilt.  I love how the quilting shows his pillow.  His ears are loose and floppy and ad to the charm of this fun quilt!

People have been very speedy finishing these Linus tops.  This is a Scrappy Trip design.  Always good.

This quilt would be delightful enough, but Liz has quilted teddies and butterflies on the plain squares to great effect. 

Another of Liz's quilts.  A Ricky Tims Convergence design - now to be a Linus perm quilt!

Good use of colour on this Linus top.  It's hard to believe but I didn't actually choose the lime green to sash and border these hexagon rosettes: somebody else did!

Here is a scrappy rail fence.  It was made in exactly the same way as the rainbow one, and has a completely different look.

Recently I taught a class on how to make a stash quilt, using 8 fat quarters.  This is Paula's version.  She added a cream border round it to really set it off.  

Great use of colours with simple sashed squares. 

Di had two bags to show.  This tote and a changing mat bag in her other hand. 

Here is a better view of the changing mat bag, with cute farmyard animals on it.

Carol made this cityscape quilt from blocks designed by Tula Pink.  She said she's 'quite pleased' with it.  I should think she's more than quite pleased, with justification!  

Carol and Maria had made the same bag.  Not that you would guess as they look very different.  As usual, a very good selection of quilts. 

Sunday, 1 February 2015

January meeting - Linus sewing

This month I was lucky to be invited (in my position as county rep for Project Linus) to conduct a sewing evening.  Fabulous! On previous occasions, I have brought fabrics and demonstrated a block, but this time I asked people to help finish some of the tops which had been donated.  (I found 19 tops waiting to be bordered!)  As usual, everyone was happy to help.  

 Lots of people brought sewing machines, while others helped iron or cut, or offered moral support.

 The balloons were nothing to do with me, but added a festive touch!

 At least people had a good time, which is the most important thing.

 Betty tried hard to avoid being in this photo, but didn't quite lean back far enough !

 Here you can see a couple of the tops.  The pink one was made from four patches we made last year.

 Some sewing, some chatting!

  Doreen and Sue were helping Anne with her paper piecing.  Anne loves paper piecing and her quilts are fabulous.  This one will be for Linus too.  

 Unfortunately I had to leave before show and tell, but Paula took some photos for us.  Here is Hollie showing a cushion which was made after we had been into her school and sewed with the children.  One youngster was so inspired, that she made lots of cushions, sold them for charity and made a lot of money.  Well done!

 This is Di's quilt for a youngster and no doubt future maths whizz.

 This fabric is on the back - perfect for a child.

 Such beautiful colour gradation in this quilt.

 A Noah's Ark panel beautifully made up.

 This quilt is proof yet again that simple blocks can make stunning quilts.  The colour placement in this design is so effective.

 I think this is Ruth's fabulous applique.  Another masterclass in colour placement.

 Some bags.  A girl cannot have too many bags!

 Here is one of the Linus dog fabric challenge quilts.  Bright and cheerful.

 A small quilt with an impressive border.

 Half square triangles rely on careful placement of darks and lights for their impact.

 Different borders add to their impact.

 Two quilts whioch are mirror images of each other.  Sweet.

 Here are Paula's elephants, marching across a Linus quilt.

 This is Paula's dog fabric challenge quilt - so different to the previous one!

 Are these backs or fronts?  Either way, they look super.

 Cute sheep on a woven blanket.

 This is Paula's quilt made to a Katherine Guerrier pattern.

Here is a close up so you can appreciate the rich colour choices.  Next meeting will be a fidget quilt workshop, so please come along!