Friday, 26 January 2018

Paintbrushes at the Ready!

There's a new hot spot to learn everything you need to know about painting on fabric, making and using stencils and creating quilts with paints.

So, if you've ever thought about quilt stenciling or painting, I have a new Group over on Facebook that you might be interested in. It's called the Stenciled & Painted Quilts Group and the whole point of this group is to share, teach, encourage and learn all about quilt stenciling and painting.

Sounds good? It gets even better because it's completely free to join and I'll be adding new projects and sharing skills in this Group throughout the year, so whether you've been stenciling for years or are a complete novice, it's a great place to take part and build up a skill sharing community.

Why? I've been stenciling for over 15 years and painting on fabric for over 30 years. I love sharing stencil designs and projects and I need a hub where anyone who's interested can connect with other like minded people and learn, explore, create and make all year round. A Group is the perfect place to make this happen.

So go ahead, pull out those paint brushes and get set for a year of creativity skill share. And you know me, there's always an interesting project just around the corner..and now that I have a Group to share my stenciling and painting ideas with .. well, the sky's the limit!

See you there!


Wednesday, 24 January 2018

WOW: Quilting Home Beautiful

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays
What a mess! This is what I have done to a usually, clean calm spot in my house. I need another house just to manage all my artistic pursuits and at least one floor will have to be dedicated to quilting and another to fabrics. A Quilter can dream, can't she? After all, I need something to keep my thoughts cheerful as I get through my mountain of quilt checking, unrolling, re-rolling, storing and tidying up.

I have a gorgeous new parcel of fabrics and 3 BOMs that I'd rather be playing with right now, but my recent moth attack has made me all house busy.

I can't wait to get over this bump.

What's Your WOW?

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

How I Store My Quilts: Use Your Noodle!

I use plastic pool noodles to store my quilts. I prefer to roll my quilts, not fold them as I can't stand creases, particularly as many of my quilts end up on the wall.
I sew a calico 'pouch' over each noodle to protect the quilt form the plastic fibres. I have never encountered any colour transfer, but you can't be too careful. I always buy the lightest coloured noodle I can get my hands on - usually pink or yellow
 I roll my quilt carefully, taking care not to bend the binding. Once I'm sure the binding is nicely lines up with the covered noodle, I simply roll.
Than I tie my rolled quilt up with cotton tape, and finally I'll cover this rolled quilt with a calico long bag. Every few years I make a batch of new, long calico bags for this purpose. If I run out in between, I wrap the rolled up quilt with the calico - like a present- and then store it in a dark room. I actually store my quilts in a spare room with the UV blocking blinds closed.
I usually keep large sprigs of drying rosemary in this room to repel any moths or other fabric eating nasties and this has always worked. Except I haven't done this in the last few years as I got complacent. I will have to return to this habit as I'm currently cleaning up a moth attack in my wardrobe. Luckily they didn't reach my linen cupboard, bedsheets or fabric stash. That would have been a very expensive loss. When I dry rosemary in the room, the whole room smells like a herbal shop, it's very fragrant but stays contained and doesn't waft around the house. I find rosemary a bit irritating after a while so I might start growing lavender as someone suggested it had the same effect on moths. I will have to look into this as I find lavender very pleasant and would probably prefer it. As for now, I don't mind the cedar balls I've popped in my wardrobe.

Now it's time for me to finish my rolling and get back to making.. I have 3 BOMs to get started!

Monday, 22 January 2018

Checking My Bed Of Roses

Having checked out my linen cupboard, I'm now double checking all my stored quilts.This is one of the first quilts I made back when I stated, so it must be about 15 years old now. Boy, does time fly when you're busy quilting. It feels like just yesterday.
This is a pieced and stenciled quilt. I love stenciling and all these roses are stenciled with Jo Sonja paints and textile medium.
This quilt has been enjoyed and stored and enjoyed some more and I'm happy to report that the stenciling looks as fresh as it did the day I first painted it. This is the wonder of modern textile mediums - if you follow the manufacturer's instructions, any stenciling you create will last as long as commercially printed fabrics.
 It's a two sided quilt, with pieced and stenciled blocks on the front and the quilt back is a whole cloth stenciled design I made up just to satisfy my love of all things romance and roses.
 Another thing that captures my eye, apart from the crisp paint colours, is the quilting. 
Bed of Roses was domestic machine quilted on a 1950's Elna sewing machine and I was a total newbie, just playing around. I've been fairly disappointed with sewing machines in recent years and I can honestly tell you with what life experience I have, that they just don't make them like they used to. I don't currently have a sewing machine I love, so I can't offer any recommendations. When this changes, I'll let you know. Heck, I'll shout it from the rooftops. But for now I'll just admire my determination to get this quilting done back in the day with what I had.
When I started out in quilting, I came from an artistic background and mindset, so I simply did things. No one had 'got to me' or told me that it couldn't be done or shouldn't be done a certain way. I was lucky in that I really wasn't influenced by any one or thing or brand. Nowadays when I'm out and among Groups of quilters, I'm often taken aback with the snobbish and somewhat elitist attitude that exists out there with what Quilter's Should Be Doing.

I think you should whatever you can with whatever you've got. If you wait until you have all the nice new, expensive tools you'll never get anything done.
This is the other vacuum foot I have set aside for vacuuming my quilts. It looks tougher than the horsehair one, but the bristles are actually soft. The fibres you see in the fibres here are not scrapped off my quilt top, they're from my table from before I laid the quilt down, it was covered in fluff and threads.
 As I'm looking over my quilts, I'm giving them a quick dust clean just because it's convenient. I did this before I rolled them up for storage the first time and they probably don't need it at this point.
And these are the quilts yet to be checked, I'l; be so relieved when this day is finally over.

Friday, 19 January 2018

Moth Attack!

Urgh! I'm under a moth attack!
I haven't seen any evidence of them, but they must be somewhere sleeping off this great feast
They have very good taste, only bothering to nibble away at my favorite mohair items and completely bypassing those old woolens I probably wouldn't miss.
I'm particularly fond of this zip up item which I wear on my walks in winter as it's so light and warm. And, it was a good addition to my resolution to avoid wearing black. But now it's completely ruined and I can't buy another one in this shade, it can only be repurchased.. in black. I'm so annoyed!
This item below is my favourite ruby red, warm, cosy cardigan for winter.
It only has a little nibble, but they made sure to do it on the front side 
where any darning would just look shabby. 

There's another two of these size bites higher up on the same side. I really don't think it's salvageable. 
but back to my favourite zip up
I really don't want to part with it, even though it looks like I've wrestled it from the jaws of a Mastiff. 
So I was thinking, I could 'patch' it with cute fabrics? But my DH has put his foot down at me walking around with random love-heart appliques stuck around my zip up top. I don't know, I think it could be OK? I'm not even going to  mention it to my DDs as they'll surely just sneak in and dispose of it for me when I'm not watching.

Why doesn't anyone in my family have any sartorial vision?
This week has been all about soaking the cedar balls in cedal oil and auditing every single garment in the house. Tomorrow, I'm going through my entire linen cabinet - which is somewhat significant and will take all 3 woman of this family to conquer. I haven't been one of those people who vacuum seals garments between seasons, but now I will be. There's a mountain of those bags to suck down into airless cubes and store away until needed and it looks like I'm going to be busy doing it all weekend.

Happily they haven't touched any quilts or fabrics.

See you on the other side of my moth crisis.

Thursday, 18 January 2018

BOM 2018: Monthly Option Ending


You already know how incredible this BOM year is shaping out to be and we've only just started. If you'd like to take part and pay installments by the month, 

this option closes on January 22nd

  BOM 2018  
$9.90USD per month for 10 months
Access the BOM 2018 for 12 months

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

WOW: Vacuuming My Quilts

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays 
I've been taking turns to bring down and vacuum my wall quilts since Monday, it's tiring work! I can't believe how much dust each one has collected in just a year and its taking me a good 45 minutes to an hour to thoroughly but gently brush every inch, front and back. I use a horsehair attachment I set aside only for this use. It's a boring job, but someone's got to do it.  
Next up, I have to check all my rolled and stored quilts for any moth damage as I've recently discovered some damaged jumpers in my wardrobe. I don't keep my stored quilts in my wardrobe, they are in a spare room, but I won't rest easy until I have checked each one over with my own eyes. Phew, it's going to be a busy day.

What's Your WOW?



Saturday, 13 January 2018

Queen's Garden: My New Free BOM !

Need I say more? Queen's Garden is a fabulously fun and cheerful walk through a fantastical blooming garden.The brighter, the better. This is definitely one for the Kaffee Fassett stash!

Members of my BOM Group, Intro & Part 1 is already waiting in the FILES area for you to download this beauty.
Everyone else, go to the Queen's Garden BOM Group