Tuesday, 29 May 2012

There is a terrific line from The Life of Brian ... go away Brian has been a very naughty boy ... yup I feel  a bit like that.  Well its; my birthday coming up and I decided that having had a really good week at work I would bring forward the innaugrual trip to the Guild in Leicester with Jo and we;d get it over with .

So off we set at 7am Sunday morning and chatted and laughed about stuff and landed in Leicester around 9.30am ... I had warned jo that this place could be either a god send or a nightmare depending on what she needed, wanted, desired and how busy it was.

Meeting up with Kat as well  we got down to some serious shopping. NOw I know full well if I had been out and spent my money on clothes I would not have been happy. I did buy the rest of the years wadding... result. and I bulk bought 505 spray basting product. Well there are several of us who use it and it is nearly £3 a can cheaper than in the shops so we saved nearly £36 .

Then I got busy in the fabric section. I think I was quite calm. I only bought what I really liked or needed( I hearm y husband laughing his head off in the distance at this comment) Yesa couple of significantpatterns for specfic projects buta lot of stash builder as well .
SOme days you just know yr going to need something yellow and spotty. It;s not an easy colour to buy .

Now what I will say is I was the good girl out of the three of us and I bought the least .... spent the least ... see my halo ?? no?? drat!

I think the Guild like it when we visit. The average shopper might think ohhh £50 thats a bit.....
One lady spent just over a hundred....  the terrible triplets spent nearly £1000 !!!!

The car didn't groan so much as creak on the journey home. and I have sequestered myself up in the room of doom to sew the karate quilt, emboiderthe teacher quilt back panels from the kids and get some more done on the wedding quilt.

I love my walking foot. ... just thought I would say. I love a lot of things in my life, my daughter, my husband, my cats , my job, my sewing and my machine and really love wel lthe whole thing. I'm very lucky. I would love a bit more money wouldn't we all , however we;re fine and fairly healthy and we laugh and get on with our lives. ( Dear Lord jsut a little win on the lottery to proive i,m not bad would be really lovely !)

Right I am away to fight with a chevron project.... and put the binding on the karate quilt . See ya!

Love and hugs

Raven XXX

Sunday, 20 May 2012

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O so these vids are in 30 secs bursts on how to do STIPPLE type free motion quilting.  This is for a smallish piece that is quite densely packed with quilting and would make a larger piece quite stiff.

There was a significant amount of laughing going on in production  and I have to say that my CAMERAMAN was not helping. Neither was the printer going off on the shelf behind me.
but anyway I hope these help.
I run through prep, feet, needles, machine spped, dogs up or down and technique .
The way to learn this is to practice practice practice. It took me several continuous hours to find my own groove and way of doing it and what I do may not suit you but it is anotehr insight into how it is done. There are lots of great wites and blogs that might give more detail but this might be a bit more low tech intro if you've never FMQ before.

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needles and feet 

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Much laughing and some muttering ! 
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nearly there 
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Keep practicing 

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Tuesday, 15 May 2012

due to some technical problems I am struggling to download pictures from my iphone t othe pc to laod them onto the site. This is giving me a real headache and I am less than impressed with the updates recently sent by the apple corp.  grump over

Just bought some muslin with the longer term plan of having a go at cathedral window.... hmmm yweah I know... trad trad trad but not if done in electric green or vivid pink.  Sad to say though I came a cropper at the 2nd hurdle as I am really not feelnig up to ironing today . nothing new there then .
I am mentally gearing up to it but I just don;t have the energy ... cos I am a lazy trout .

THe hexagon quilt is slowly getting there and has taken a mighty amount of work . Al lthe plaques are now attached to the top dress piece and a pair of borders added. It;s going to be huge as it is nearly 7ft across and 9ft long already . So it will easily cover the bed it;s beingm ade for .

It;s really heavy and takes a lot of moving so I can only manage an hour at a time and then I have to pick something lighter .

The binding is on and being handstitched to the back of the red white blue bunting quilt . It looks lovely and has ganaered some admiration from all sorts of areas. It finally looks like bunting and medals and I really like it. 

THe karate quilt is getting close to the top being completed and then under the walking foot to be quilted. THe quilting has already been decided with it echoing the finishing on hte katate jackets . lines aspaced about 1/4 inch apart in groups of 4 or 5 . these are going to spaced a bit more and not on every rib as the quilt would then become too rigid. So I am going to do a few practice passes to see what spacing looks best .

the wedding quilt has stalled in the making due to a lack of wadding but will be progressing very soon.
I;ve cleared a hell of a lot of big quilts this year alaready despite not feelnig my best some days and my projects being considerably bigger than many quilters take on .

Now this might raise a few eyebrows .... but it;s time we stopped faffing with minis and mug rugs ( except as samples) and got down to some full on full size usable quilts. I am seeing more and more quilts that will only service a baby or a table top  and the movement has to prove that in order for mod quilt ot hold its head high amoungst the trad army  we are going to have to do some big work .

Trad are already mouthing ( in my area) that mod can't and won;t do big quilts. now this could be just snarly jealousy and I would hope so . But we do need to seem ore LARGE  work by mod quilters to show how it works. This doesn't just mean big squares or a few spots on a white background ... much as I love it myself. We are going to have to show that we have the technical skill along with artisitc  vision. NOw I shall jsut wait for the backlash on these comments.

Peace and love XXX Raven

Sunday, 6 May 2012



Righta few requests have been made for the pattern for this bag. yeah this one above his text.  Aby modelled by pur daughter the goon in the beanie and yes it is a Xmas pudding hat. She is a pickle ... such a galloping sense of fun and joy of life yet s serious at times. Ths is the girl whoholds the UK Karate champioship title for Fuku go and team kata in her belt class. Way to go girlie.

These ae 2 of the men in my life.
My husband in the glasses and the poseur in the fur coat .


This is a quilt top that i made this weekend  to provide a quilt to go into a 3 town based regional raffle to raise moeny for a local charity . it;s made with 5 inch sq. and it;s supposed ot look like bunting blowing in the wind.
done in Red white and shades of blue for the jubilee and the olympics .  I;ll show a pic when it is quilted.
 RIGHT .........................so you want the pattern forthe sack bottom bag.

you need 16 squares choose yr size  I used 5 inch from my charm square box because i,m lazy .
I choose to do an arm in a different colour  for demonstration . now you are going to sew these into strips of 4 squares... you cna mix them up or keep tem in colour strand ( like wot I did )  or you can hope and pray ... I still have not worked out how they rotate around so colour mixing can be a bit hit and miss and if ou work it outplease pklease tell me .

I also put my least favourite sqaure at the bottom end of the chain and it will end up at the base. put yr fav near the top of the strip

to line the bag you will need the same amount of fabric cut in 4 strips ... so if you use 5 inch squares  tats 20 inches ... so your lining strip will be 19 inches long but 5 inches wide.... you lose 1/4 inch per seam ok so you lose 3/4 inch.
 so you sew the 4 blocks together to give you 4 chains of four .... like this and this .
 NOw for the clever bit ...... you make a square with the 4 bottom blocks . they need to be laid out as per the diagram below. it;s hard to describe so I would follow the picture... think greek windmill  . I sew them in 2 sets .. all of this is jsut straight seams .
 so you sew along here .



sew there and he same for the othe block.


then you join them in the middle. Now I am hoping that the video will lad sooner rather than later ad you can see me putting the rest together.

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Tuesday, 1 May 2012

 OK so here we have the latest batch of fun pics from my tiny work bench . FINALLY thejapanese x and +  I reached thep oint where I could noty face another block . I lvoed them but they were eating at my soul and i thought ... this has to end so i decided to settle for a 7 x 6 block system  with a good wide border. in the pic it looks turquiose but it;s a ctually more jade coloured.  This will look totally lovely when quilted .

A now this is part of a scrap bag of MODA  grow with me  range. it is a series of 12 strips jpoined togehter and then quilted onto a light bonded background. the dies are then sewn up and a base stitched into the bag to give it a flat bottom.   It has now got a top binding on it and I msut make the handles and closing . It will make part of a very sweet layette for a baby .


My dirty little secret is out .... following the purchase of early brthday furniture  ie new fancy white bookcase ... I sorted my stash out by colour . Thats a lot of fabric . This does not include my scrap boxes. i of small scvraps and pre cut bits and bobs and the large scraps .... . It also doesn't hold my wadding either.

Now this was naughty .
I called via a local store after a really good morning at work ... and bought a skinny 1/4 of 3 new MODA fabrics .. to these I added some Denise Schmidt I had still lying around , a favourite jade green swirly , a coral pop print that came from connecting thread via a friend  and a stoff basic .... all in all a lovely bag with a almost cubey feel. It has gone on holiday with a fellow quilter holding my wadding stash . I may never see it again ..
 RIght my STASH BEE Hive 3 blocks.

I hit a right panic . OH GOD I don;t have any black .  I was really struggling until I finally scrapped through the bottom of my CS box. THere were the last few scraps of black from a monochrome quilt commission I did last year . I also found some grey toned pieces from a sweetwater charm [pack i bought which led to anotehr interesting discovery .... I bought some fabric the other week on a whim ... loved it and was looking for something to go with it . When I check ed my Sweetwater CP I find lo and behold ... there it is ... I love those sweetwater ladies and their lovely labels and items .

Anyway I digress.... so i sat and thought right quit faffing around woman and get on with it . so I cut the components  and made the wonky stars and then built the rest of the block around them. Since I had cut plenty of pieces I thought well geto n and make anotehr so  here they are .
so these will be trimmed and posted this friday            hope they have ah appy life in a lovely quilt.
tommrow is the start of my full on working week ... so no quilting for 2 days at least but we also have al ong weekend coming so i might be able to get the karate qult for my Daughter;s karate school summer kickass party .... after that we;ll see.
I also have to do the major work on a hexagon english paper pieced project from a cvollegue. that;s going ot take some doing .

unitl later RAVEN XX
Ahhhh Tuesdays ... you never know what yr going to get and yr never 100% sure that what you get is really what you want ... anyway ... an hour of pain at physio ... plus a good laugh and organising a visit to the Fabric guild at Leicester  so all in all not bad however ..... it also means I have to check out what I need for the next 6 months for wadding cos I,m not doing the journey again this year ( she says hahahahahha who am I kidding)

I have also made my blocks fro my Stash bee and have loaded the photos into Facebook SEW WHAT group .... this is an open group and offers people the chance to show their projects as they complete them  or don;t as may be the case but I have laoded my pics there until I can transfer them onto my laptop and this blog ... technology was supposed to make life easier but instead I find I have so many log ins link in s and emails that quite frankly I can't cope

Let me show you

Home family email
home personal email
work email
blog spot ( here )
Amazon log in ( for buying essentials )
ebay and paypal log ins
Mod quilt guild page manager and log in
MQG leaders log in
phone company log in
now I don;t write stuff down and I am going a shade dollally ticktack . so do you keep the same password andp ray you remember it and no one finds it or do you  make them al ldifferent ??

well there you go I am suffering from overlaod andsomething has to give .....

so I am going to go and pick up DD and bring her home feed her and then take her to training where I can sit for an hour and do some binding and not have to deal with a computer screen . Wish me luck

RAVEN XXX