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



Monday, November 19, 2012

Gael's Christmas Swop Quilt

Before quilting
 This weekend I have been MADLY trying to get on top of some customer quilts (all needed before Christmas of course!), as well as teaching at Button Tree Quilts.  This is Gael's quilt.
After quilting - an overall perspective
 Unfortunately, my standard photo spot was not available, so my photos are not as clear or sharp as usual - so sorry!
The border - I wanted to emphasise the block pattern on the borders.

Another all-over pho
 I really, really enjoyed working on Gael's Quilt!  Now all we have to do is keep it a secret from.  ******* :)
The sashings.  As the piecing was angular in nature, I thought it would be great to do some angular patterns in the sashings.  I think it works :)
Happy Piecing!!!

Rachelle

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Shirley's Circle's Quilt

I try to come up with some inventive names when I'm quilting: I find that this helps guide the other side of my brain while the quilting side is working.  Actually, I come up with all sorts of mindless chatter to keep my brain working!

Most often I play a DVD or listen to an audio book.  I often just tune out and use it as white noise, but regardless, it still works to occupy the other side of my brain.  That's the side that says, Rachelle, you haven't washed up yet, or Rachelle, the dogs need to be walked, or Rachelle you need to feed the children!

I have been listening to many classic books recently.  http://librivox.org/ have thousands of free audio books that you can download onto wither your pc/mac or iphone/ipod.  Ive listened to Vanity Fair, Wuthering Heights, Doctor Doolittle, The adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Carmilla to name only a few.  I love being able to listen to these wonderful old stories!



Anyway, back to Shirley's quilt.  Shirley wanted circles, lots and lots of circles.....


That's lots of circles!













Sometimes when you're quilting, a secondary design appears.....







When the centre circles were micro stippled, lovely diamonds appeared in the middle :)










Here's the finished quilt.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Kylie's Quilt

Recently I've been busy (really busy and way too busy to post). Kylie had asked me to quilt her quilt for her, and then needed it 3 weeks earlier than expected... Oops!!

Anyway. This beautiful quilt is Kylie's first, and its a 21st birthday gift for her daughter. I don't think Kylie would mind me saying that she learned a few lessons while making this quilt.

The most important lesson She learned was the importance of using good quality quilters cotton fabrics. The fabrics used in this quilt were, silk, polyesters, upholstery cotton and quilters cottons- everything moved and stretched independently!!! Arrrggghhhhhhh!!!!!!!! When you buy your fabric from your local quilting shop you know that you are going to purchase first class supplies. Whilst it is enjoyable rummaging around in 2nd hand shops, imagining that we are like our forebearers, using whatever scraps are at hand, we have the benefit of excellent supplies- so go forth and use them!

Kylie's other learned lesson was about correctly pressing the seams and she pieced. I have attached a link to a document that explains this technique much clearer than I can. Pressing your seams correctly makes for a much more enjoyable experience for your quilter- trust me!

http://quilting.about.com/od/pressingtechniques/ss/press_blocks.htm






Ok we'll that's all for now.

Happy piecing!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Making a quilt for a poorly nephew

What do you do when your nephew is poorly?  Make him a  quilt of course!  My gorgeous nephew is besotted with Thomas The Tank Engine, so I made him a quick train quilt.  I wanted something that would double as a bed or a floor play quilt.  so....

I took 1 yard of this fabric
http://www.hancocks-paducah.com/ItemImages/Large/wp67187729.jpg

















 added some borders (1 yard of each - the red cut at 3 inches and the black at 6 inches)..











and finally, a heap of random stippling before sewing on a binding!

A perfect quilt to play trains, cars, trucks or to sleep under.

I know he will love it!

Happy piecing

Rachelle x

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Mumma Marg's Quilt

Mumma Marg is just gorgeous, and I love her to bits!  At the recent Button Tree Quilts and Sewing Essentials workshop with Gail Pan and Helen Stubbings, Marg won my gift voucher - yey!




 Marg had pieced together a post and rail quilt top as a gift for (Shh - it's a secret!)

 I decided to quilt an Free Motion edge to edge feathered Flower.  I hope she likes it :)


Sue's Charm Square Quilt

I once heard you can't do Edge to Edge Pantograph style designs on a domestic machine.....  Phooey I reckon!!!

Sue asked me to quickly pull together her charm square quilt this week, and seemed the perfect time to prove that you can do Free Motion  Edge to Edge designs on a domestic machine!.

It seems that I may have forgotten to take a 'before' photo this time.  Sorry Sue!

 I chose to do a free motion rose design on the quilt as the fabrics were beautiful florals.
 The back of the quilt.....  roses everywhere!
 The finished quilt.
A close up of the rose design.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Anne's Tractor Quilt

Anne asked me to quilt another quilt for her this week. Anne has very particular ideas about what she wants and she always gives me a mud map of what she wants where.