Sunday, March 10, 2013

Yellow Monkey's

I'm sorry I've been a bit quiet recently.  I have been busy working, trust me!  I simply haven't had the chance to update, so here are some pictures of one of the quilts I've finished recently.

The quilt pre-quilting.  Gorgeous colours!
After quilting.  The movement in the blocks close up is amazing...  check out the pictures of the back!

You spin me right round, baby right round like a record player.......

The backing was a pieced yellow and blues to complement the front.  The yellow quilting showed up so well on the blue backing!

A close up of the swirling design in the blue Monkey Wrenches

I love the borders.  Sadly it's not as clear to see in the pictures as it is on the actual quilt.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Coralee's Baby Quilt

This weekend I've had lots of fun quilting this little beauty for Coralee.

A blurry photo of the quilt prior to quilting.  Coralee didn't want any quilting in the stitchery panels.
The finished quilt.  I used the inner sashings to frame the stitcheries.  I filled the rest of the quilt with a lovely gender neutral paisley echo.

A close up of the frames and paisley...

I washed out the colour so that you can see the quilting on the reverse of the quilt.  It is actually a lovely bright green colour.  Yummy!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Anne's Owl Queen Sized Quilt

Sometimes a quilt comes along, and I just don't want to let it go home!  I loved everything about this quilt!!! 

Before I go any further, a few people have started asking how long did it take, how much thread etc, so I am going to start answering those questions - ready?

Time - 32 hours
Thread - a little over 2000yds of Isacord 40 (colour A5871) for the top and about 25 bobbins of Superior Thread (colour 153 Parchment)

The quilt arrived with this gorgeous bright red backing - and the quilt top was white....   Huummmmmm.  SO I decided that I needed to check out the colour fastness of the backing before I went any further.  This picture was taken only 5 minutes after the fabric had been in the water: You should have seen it after an hour, it was like blood!

So an emergency Sunday trip to obtain a different backing - with one request from Anne (She has a really important job and just couldnt get away to shop herself so I said I would) "It must be spotty" - Riiighht!

 So with backing in hand, I could commence.  Perhaps I should say that this is 17 days before Christmas and yep- the quilt was to be a Christmas Gift!  Here's a photo of the quilt top.  Anne designs all of her quilts herself and they are just beautiful.  This time she left huge blank panels, and I got one instruction "do your thang!"  (Im sorry about the awful photos...  I'm waiting for my handyman, AKA Father dear, to come and put up my photo line outside again)

Quilters come in many shapes, sizes and levels of expertise.  And from all makes and models, I can receive 'friendly borders' - that  is, borders that wave at you!  Basically this happens when you take a long strip of fabric and sew it along the seam and chop off what isnt needed.  In essence, your border is too long.  It is far better to measure the length needed (and preferably  in the very centre of the quilt) and use pins and easing.  This will ensure that your border sections fit properly.

This picture is of me unpicking seams cutting off the extra fabric and sewing the seams back together again.  You can see the overlap from the red fabric underneath - a whole inch in places!

I chose to quilt a tight paisley in the large border panels.  I always think that Paisley looks like leaves (very fitting for this quilt) and also can look a bit like feathers (perhaps if you screw up your eyes??)

The borders were separated by inch strips of bright fabric, so each one received a different quilting pattern.....

The simple quilting gives your eyes a place to rest.

The center of the quilt was a gorgeous tree filled with owls.  I echoed the owls and used a really dense filler.  This filler  is so useful!  It gives movement to a quilt - don't you think?

Meanwhile the center medallion was surrounded by a simple pieced border.  I cross hatched this one, nice a simple but really effective.

And so, it was finished, on the 15th no less! (I promised by the 17th).  As I have no photo line outside (blame Dad)  I took photos on my bed.  As you can see this is a queen sized quilt.

 Did I mention how much I loved this quilt??????

I loved playing around with different angels to take photos.  I am NOT a photographer, but I think you can really see the quilting in this photo.
As I was playing with the photos I flipped the quilt.  I used Parchment coloured Superior Threads pre filled bobbins  and it looked great on the cream spot backing.
I think this is my FAVOURITE photo!!!  Ever!!  Because I only used a single colour on the reverse, it's a wholecloth quilt :)
Actually, this might be my favourite photo.......  I really loved this quilt~!  I wish someone would make one for me!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Jane's Christmas Swop

 This beautiful  quilt came my way to quilt ready for our Christmas swop.  I was SOOOO excited.  I have previously quilted for Jane, so she deliberately left me big open spaces to 'do your thing'!
Before Quilting

The centre applique and embroidery pre quilting

The wonderful thing about Jane's quilts is their simplicity that enables my quilting to showcase!  Thank you Jane!!!
Finished :)

The feather border

Who said you cant write on a quilt!

The centre applique block quilted

I adore quilting feathers :)

The cornerstone details

The reverse of the quilt.  I deliberately chose to use dark brown on the reverse, as I happen to know who this quilt is for :)

The cornerstone detail (reverse)
I cannot press Post on this Blog Post until after the 11th of December, as that's the date of the party, but I hope you won't mind waiting until then.

Love in piecing

Rachelle x

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

2012, and getting ready for 2013

I have one more quilt to finish this year- and then I can hopefully have a week to do some of my own work :). This pre-Christmas period has been crazy- and I mean crazy! Working at my day job, being a full time mommy, and getting up at silly o'clock to get 2 or 3 hours of quilting in before work means I'm tired. Really tired!

Being this amazingly busy has given me pause; can I continue? I want to, that's certainly true, but can I physically? I have been a bit poorly for the last couple of years, and I have never had a great constitution. A hundred years ago, or so, I guess I would have been 'delicate'.

So I started reflecting on what elements of my business I enjoyed the most.

I LOVE teaching my free motion classes! I particularly love seeing everyone's terrified faces when we start, and the happy bouncy 'when can we do this again?' as those previously terrified newbies are leaving. I've taught classes and received such amazing feedback. Some of you (yes, that's you Ellen) keep coming back to do the same class again and again, just because you can! After one free motion class, I overheard one lady tell her neighbor 'I'm never watching tv again!'. No- I can't cut back on my teaching schedule.

Ok, so the quilts then. As you will know, I quilt on my domestic machine, and you will also know, I'm sure, that I cannot abide pantographs and any other form of turning your unique creation into the same as someone else's. I really, really love to custom quilt your quilts. All of my wonderful kids get into the design process as we hang up the quilt top and talk about what should go where. I love when they come home from school and say, 'so, which bits did you quilt today?' 'Did you finish the japanese one?'

Each of your quilts becomes a living, breathing member of our family. It has a personality all of its own. Some quilts are quiet and unassuming, but just like people, with a little bit of encouragement, they shine. Some quilts are boisterous and loud, and they don't need any encouragement! They leap about showing off their attributes!

And that's what I enjoy the most, helping quilts shine!

That being said, my decision is made. In 2013, I will only be accepting custom quilting commissions. I am also going to have to restructure the pricing structure. By the new year, I will have worked this out, but my aim is to have three simple categories, minimum, medium and full custom quilting. If your quilt is already with me, the new pricing structure WILL NOT APPLY, don't worry :)

I am sorry if this structure change will upset any of my current clientele, but to continue as I am is unsustainable. I want to ensure that I have the time and energy to make your quilt sing!

Please understand that this has not been an easy decision to make, and has taken a great deal of soul searching to decide upon the most effective way forward.

Right, I think that's enough rambling for now.

Merry Christmas and happy new piecing!!!

Rachelle x

Friday, December 7, 2012

Ms A's Maternity Signature Quilt

A secret is revealed!

I have been keeping this beauty hidden and quiet for quite a few months, and I can finally show the pictures.

My daughter is a very keen musician, and consequently, I am very close to her music teachers in school.  When I learned that Ms A was leaving to have a baby, I decided that she needed a special quilt.

I decided to make a Signature Quilt (otherwise known as a siggie).

I sourced music fabric from all over the world, but because I had chosen a really bright colour scheme, only a few pieces worked well.

I ripped out three borders until I was happy with my final choice!

You can just see the detail in the fabric.  The fabric is from the School of Rock range, and alternates between Momma Loves and Daddy Rocks!  Perfect, I thought!

A little bird, or at least a little bird's mother, tells me Ms A was very, very happy with her quilt!

What more can I ask for

Happy Piecing xxxx

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Pat's Zonky Plonky Quilt!

Ho Ho Ho, Merry Christmas!  Too early???  I think possibly.  However, I have HEAPS of customer quilts that need finishing ready for Christmas.  This one, is Pat's.  Pat attended one of my classes at Button Tree Quilts, and asked me to quilt this one for her.

Sometimes a name just pops out, and frankly, this one needed to be called Zonky Plonky!  I dont know why, it just does :)

Anyway I digress.....
Before (Sorry about the awful photo!)
I chose to echo quilt the large appliques, and then stipple around them inside their blocks.
After  (again sorry about the dreadful photos)

 This is what the Butterfly looks like, front and back.  The double echo quilting makes the quilt almost reversible!

 I wanted to use a whimsical and cartoon-y sashing and border design, so I chose to use the spiral ornaments design.  I love this design, and it fits perfectly with the cartoon nature of the quilt.  I used another of my favourite designs in the 1st border: jigsaw stipple.

 The reverse of the quilt is lots of fun.  You can clearly see the animal appliques!

I really enjoyed quilting this quilt. 

I hope you enjoy reading my posts.  Please feel free to leave me comments, I love reading them - even the spam ones offering me half price medicines!

Happy quilting

Rachelle x