Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Quilted Cushions for Christmas

I love alliterations. I also love how these cushions for The Boy's sister, D, turned out. I made the cushions to match the ZigZag quilt that I meant to give her for her birthday but which didn't get done until Christmas. 

D's presents: ZigZag Quilt with matching cushions

Cushion 1: Pop Art Cushion

Pop Art Cushion
Finished size: 30 x 30 cm

D loves pop art, especially Roy Lichtenstein. I ordered a screen printed sample panel on ebay. The original plan was a folded log cabin in black and white to frame the image but I forgot to take into account that the folds wouldn't stay folded when the cushion was inserted. So, in the end, I hand quilted the edges of the white frames. Both the black and the white fabrics were 100% cotton from my stash. My mum helped a LOT with this one, mainly because we were at my grandparents' house and had to use a very retro sewing machine that I was pretty incapable of sewing with. To be honest, she did all of the sewing for this one because I couldn't get the machine to behave at all. It's her old one from a long long time ago so she knows all its tricks.

Cushion 2: ZigZag cushion

ZigZag Cushion
Finished size: 50 x 50 cm

The second cushion cover I made for D matches the design of the ZigZag quilt that I made her. I used some of the remaining Bella Solids from the charm pack that I used to make her quilt (Bella Solids in bleached white) and black quilter's cotton from my stash. I didn't have time to quilt the cushion cover but the half square triangles are quite small so it's not really necessary in my opinion. I backed the pieced panel with some spare white fabric and zigzag stitched around the edges.

ZigZag cushion: getting better at half square triangles!
Cushion back & closure
Both cushion envelopes are finished with Tula Pink's Salt Water Sea Debris in aqua to match D's ZigZag quilt. I enclosed the edge of the envelope with a double folded strip of white and sewed on some snaps to keep the cushions closed. I found these great duck feather cushion inserts at John Lewis. They were less pricey than I was expecting, too!

Zigzag stitching the inside edges
The next time I make cushion covers I want to try to enclose the inner seams. Those zigzag-seamed edges really don't agree with my OCDness. Everything must be neat and tidy and perfectly straight. Everything! Luckily I'm moving into a new flat very soon so I have an excuse to make all of the pretty cushions for myself.

Xx me.

Monday, 3 March 2014

Fabric shopping

I am currently in Philadelphia visiting my friend Z. Apart from being my best friend in whole wide world, Z also moonlights as my post room for anything that can't be posted to places outside the USA. I pay her in boost bars and assorted ridiculous things in the post. 

When I turned up in Philadelphia last week Z had a frankly embarrassing horde of boxes for me to open. Among other things, this included some fabrics that I couldn't wait to get my hands on.

1. Silks
In Britain, fabric shopping is a very expensive pastime. To be honest, if you, like me, refuse to use synthetic fabrics and much prefer wools and silks, making a piece of clothing yourself is often significantly more expensive than buying it on the high street. Fabric is much more affordable in the USA and with the Mecca that is Mood Fabrics now selling online there is also significantly more choice. I ordered five different silks and silk blends to make blouses for work and perhaps a pretty summer dress. Here they are: 

Left to right: 
infinity silk crepe de chine, 
grey mini diamond stretch charmeuse, 
Anna Sui sapphire silk jacquard

Black paisley crepe de chine
 Italian cherry blossom cotton-silk voile

2. Quilting cottons
I also ordered some pretty quilting cottons, which I plan to use to make this stunning quilt from this great new book, Classic Modern Quilts. 

Top to bottom: Salt Air - Sea Garden (coral), La Belle Fleur - French General, Nature's Christmas (berry), Chateau Rouge - French General, Christmas Countdown (tonal red), Blitzen - Grunge Solid (red). All by MODA.

Chez Moi - Mimi - Prism Floral (aqua, MODA)

3. Ralph Lauren Los Cabos sheets
I also got this Ralph Lauren sheet set (king sized flat and fitted sheets and two pillowcases). The pattern is called Los Cabos and I. Real life it is a much richer shade of blue. I used this to back Samuel's quilt (check it out here) and love how soft and silky it is. I find it very difficult to find wide backing fabrics that I like and using pretty patterned queen or king sized sheets makes things much easier. I'm planning to use the pillow cases to make some pretty pillow case dresses for my friend C's little girls. 

Ralph Lauren Los Cabos

I am very excited about my stack of fabric loot and can't wait to get started. I've promised myself that I will finish both the hidden stars quilt and the quilt I'm making for C's older daughter before I start anything new though. 

Me x

Saturday, 1 March 2014

WIP: Hexagon Quilt February 2014

I've been on holiday for the past two weeks and, annoyingly, was rather ill for some of it. This did, however, in combination with rather a lot of time spent in aeroplanes, give me a fair bit of time to spend on the hexagon quilt.

Here is February's progress report:

Progress: February 2014
Flowers: 6 pink flowers, 1 partial pink flower
Sections: two sections of 3 pink flowers each
Loose basted hexagons: 7 white, 41 print

Very pleased with myself, especially given that I'm currently still in the US and have a 6 hour flight back to London tomorrow and a trip to Germany coming up next week. Yay for sewing on the plane!

Me x