30 November 2015

1930s Farmer's Wife QAL - #23 Charlotte / Rotary Cutting Tips

I'd completely forgotten how much I loved making these little Farmer's Wife blocks! It was such a pleasure rummaging through my scrap bins and stash auditioning different fabrics for each one. Thank you Kerry for inviting me this week on the 1930s Farmer's Wife Quilt Along, I don't think I would have got round to making one if I didn't have a special post to write. 

The big stack of blocks above are all from my original Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt, which I happen to make in 1930s reproduction fabric, so it's completely fitting for today's QAL blog post - so they made an appearance ;-) I started making these quite a few years ago but still haven't got to the finish line with it, I thoroughly enjoy making them (which can be extremely labour intensive), so I'm in no hurry! I'm all about the sloooow sewing…

I really love the new addition of the miniature diagram thats included on the pattern page of each block. How fun. I know this is used for foundation paper piecing directions, but I thought it might be a nice memento for a quilt journal with some watercolour paints perhaps as well? 

Says the girl that hasn't even finished all the blocks from the first quilt? I know, I know. 

I digress, back to the #23 Charlotte block, which you can find on page 182 of the book. I rotary cut and machine piece, as I have done with all my FWQ blocks. There are rotary cutting templates provided, in addition to the foundation paper pieced ones. Just print them out on regular paper (they have a 1inch size guide on the page so you know you're printing out at the correct size, which of course I didn't on first time, oops. I succeeded on second attempt by selecting the US Letter page size in my printer - you might want to also use something like 'do not scale' etc). 

Most often I will dig through my stash as they are such tiny pieces you really don't need much. If I use yardage I'll rough cut a strip larger than the template and rough cut a larger shape than the template. I will often fold the strip to double over, depending on how many pieces are required for that fabric/shape. 

I usually stack about 2-4 pieces (depending on how sharp my rotary blade is) and trim off the excess, lining up with the edge of the template. Turn and cut, turn and cut, being careful not to shift too much. I use a mini rotary cutting mat that spins, not sure why it didn't make the picture? 

Once you're all prepped you're ready to go. Chain piecing makes life much easier here. Once I'm done with the chain I'll bring it straight over to my iron for pressing (without too much handling) and trim the threads while at the iron station to save time going back and forth. 

And here she is all finished! I went for a different colour combo than the book version. I used Corn Yellow Kona solid, which is a really bold yellow that packs a punch, alongside an old Mother's Melodies print I used to sell a few years back in the shop. The opposite side is my favourite green, Aloe Kona solid and a matching Pretty Posies print by Darlene Zimmerman. I have a popular Kona bundle I put together for Sew and Quilt, which is a complete FQ bundle of all 22 official 1930's Kona solids. They are perfect for this QAL!

Of course I couldn't leave without sharing some 1930's repro eye candy from Sew and Quilt with you! *plug, plug, plug*. On the left is the delightful Pretty Posies FQ bundle, it's subtle and sweet without bring over the top, plus it's 10% off ;-) On the right is a special Farmer's Wife FQ bundle I put together for the release of Kerry's QAL. What a great bunch hey?!

If you fancy joining in VeryKerryBerry's QAL, you can find all the details here. Kerry has lots of helpful tips and information on making the blocks using the foundation paper pieced method and other bloggers have been hosting to share their tips on the different methods of construction also. There is also a very useful errata page thats kept up to date so do take a look. (I reported no problems with my block).

Thanks for stopping by and have a great week! 

14 November 2015

Quick Update

My new quilt pattern will be ready for release soon. I'm tweaking the pattern here and there and working on some last minute edits. The newly named Penny Tiles quilt has arrived back from the long arm quilter with a lovely Baptist Fan design, I'm really happy with the outcome so once I'm done with the binding I'll share the full reveal! Exciting!

I'll also be planning some quilt kits hopefully! A loooovely delivery of Liberty Tana Lawns arrived this week for Sew and Quilt, so I've been busy petting and admiring for the last few days...

As well I don't think I could write a blog post today without mentioning the terrible events that have happened in Paris last night. So, so devastating. My heart goes out to everyone in France. This is a photo from my trip to Nantes this year, my first time visiting the country. I've never been to Paris, but its a place I've always wanted to visit and hope to someday. 
Have a peaceful weekend friends.

2 November 2015

Lori Holt's Cozy Cottage Calendar: Blog Tour!

Today I'm kicking off the Lori Holt tour for her newest release; the Cozy Cottage 2016 Calendar! Lori, of Bee In My Bonnet puts her unique quilty spin on this fun calendar which you can use and enjoy all year! As well, you have the pattern to make the mini quilt on the front cover...

… and these cute pillows! Don't you just L-O-V-E that flag border around the cottage block!? A perfect finish. 
For my cozy cottage block, I decided on a Christmassy theme going all red, which I figured would be really sweet as a Christmassy pillow, or mini quilt for the upcoming festive season (not that long to go!). I made the larger 8" size. Lori has included pattern instructions for a 4" block and an 8" block. Whatever I decide to finish it into, I know I'll be using the border like Lori, for sure!

If you're a fan of the delightful Lori Holt Farm Girl style, you'l love this. Quilty, country styled photos are featured on every page, so each month will be a treat to turn over. A big thank you Fat Quarter Shop for my copy, I look forward to getting organised in 2016! You can find it available to buy from them here. I also have copies available in my Sew & Quilt shop too, for those who want to order from the UK/EU. 

Have a great week friends! Its my birthday today, so I'm hoping for an afternoon of sewing, fingers crossed! Jessie, xo

Pssst… In other Lori Holt news new brand new Bloom Sew Simple templates have just been released and are now available at Sew and Quilt! Lori will be using these in her new QAL starting January to make the 'Bloom' quilt, which will be offered as a free pattern on the Riley Blake website. < Order your 'Bloom' Templates here >

1 November 2015

Glorious Gingham Quilt Finish

There aren't many times I would share a quilt finish with the backing as the first photo, but on this occasion its a necessity! Favourite. Quilt. Backing. Ever. It really makes the quilt. With an all solid pieced top, it could look quite plain and simple, but the backing really makes it all pop! In a big way!  

The front is pretty nice too ;-) The quilt was a project I did for Love Patchwork & Quilting magazine earlier this year, issue #23. I had a major thing for gingham at the time (and still do!) so we collaborated on an idea and I think it turned out quite well. It makes the perfect picnic quilt and I'm excited to test that theory out next summer since I didn't have a single beach day this year, boo! Yep, lots of picnics in the park and summer beach days I'm planning next year. 

It uses simple strip piecing so once you've got your fabrics cut and organised you'll speed through construction. I have quilt kits available at Sew and Quilt, which includes the fabrics for the quilt top only, the pattern (at this time) is only available with LP&Q magazine. I managed to hunt down back issues here, if you're interested in making one. As well, I will be releasing the pattern myself next year once I'm able to do so. I'm planning another version in printed fabrics too. 

The quilting is a little wiggly for my liking, but hey, thats life! I quilted in 'straight' lines with 1/2" spacing on the two end borders and then through the centre of each pieced row, and then again 1/4" either side. I wish now I'd gone with 1/2" all over, but I know for next time now ;-) I carried on the same fabric for the binding for a clean finish. It gives a nice contrast against the white borders on the front too. 

I also made a couple of matching cushions too! There's a peach coloured one to match alongside the yellow below. I'm selling the cushions, so if you're interested in buying them drop me an email :-) 

Always fun to see my name in print! Thank you again LP&Q! The girls over there are the best. Look out for their new sister magazine; Today's Quilter too, its fab! 

Pattern: Glorious Gingham by Jessie Fincham (pattern featured in LP&Q #23)
Quilted: Jessie Fincham
Size: 54" square
Fabric: Kona Solids by Robert Kaufman Fabrics, backing and binding; vintage sheet

I've also FINALLY found a place where I can take full photo's of my quilts outside so I'm extremely happy today! Its the little things eh! ;-) Have a great Sunday! Jessie

30 October 2015

Spell It With Moda Quilt: Finished

I've been getting quite slack on the finished quilts and blog sharing, so let me today update you on my FINISHED Spell It With Moda quilt. I started this quilt back in 2014 when the blog hop started, it was such a cool idea (good job, Moda!) and it perfectly tied in with my sister, Bianca being pregnant with her first baby ;-) so I had an excuse to pull out all my cute novelty 30s reproduction prints and primary colours for a happy baby quilt.  I think it took me about a month or so to make all the blocks and finish the top. They were so fun to do! Then of course I folded it up and put off the quilting 'for another day'… 

8 months later baby Benjamin was born, but alas the quilt wasn't ready. Doh. Festival Of Quilts prep, general life stuff got in the way, yada yada … it was always the bottom of the list. Then my patient (cough!) sister gently reminded me it was his birthday coming up in October, so perhaps I could finish it?? ;-) so I got to work last month and basted and quilted it. Finished the day before we travelled to London for his birthday, in typical last-minute-Jessie fashion. 

 It was the best thing gifting the quilt! Sooo special. They all loved it, phew! Aren't they a cute bunch too! 

I'm super sad not to have any better official finished photos though, I can only blame myself for finishing it in the late afternoon and not being able to take any decent photos. Hopefully these iPhone pictures will do! I used a really nice backing fabric as well, which of course I forgot to photograph. It has a really fun scrappy binding which works well with the low-volume and Kona Snow background.

Pattern: Spell It With Fabric by Moda (free)
Quilted: Jessie Fincham
Fabric: 1930s novelty reproductions, Ducks In A Row by American Jane, Kona Snow

22 October 2015

Coming Soon!

Are you like me and have ideas scratching around in your head or notebooks dotted about your house? I do, all the time! and they ALWAYS end up at the bottom of my to-do list never to see the light of day. Well, I couldn't hold this idea in any longer, and I'm so pleased!! Its a special quilt I've been plotting for *years* to release as a pattern, and since I often do projects for editorial titles I figured why not release this one myself?! Perhaps my English readers will think this design familiar? I drew my inspiration from Victorian floor tiles, which is a familiar scene in terrace and town houses up and down the country. 

I've used all my favourite fabrics, so it's 100% me, which feels amazing! And the best backing fabric ever, officially! Sometimes we just need some 'selfish sewing' don't we? 

The top is finished, prepped and backing fabric cut - now it's arrived with the long-arm quilter who can work some magic on it! While we wait for the finish next month I have a little helpful team of pattern testers, testing the measurements and dimensions for me ;-) then I'll be revealing the full finish at which point you can order the PDF or printed pattern at Sew and Quilt! Hooray! I'll be doing a few happy dances once this is all done! I love ticking things off my bucket list, can you tell?!