Waiting In The Wings

Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Slashed Squares - 25 blocks complete

Yes, at last all 25 blocks finished and up on the wall, the blocks were easy to cut and sew but the time spent on arranging and re-arranging has been phenomenal! No sooner would I think I had a good arrangement than I would return the next day and find that no, not quite happy and so another re-arrange.

Below was the 'finish' in the morning, blocks just pinned, not too tidily though


 I wasn't happy with the block on the fourth row third along from the left, so in the afternoon


after changing  the block I didn't care for and replacing,I  also just moved two others. Yes, it's busy, but I like a good mish-mash now and again! I could continue on with various permutations but I'm calling it finished but I am open to suggestions. It really wasn't too nice a day for photographing, the quilt is brighter than shown but we have a wet week on the cards so I knew the problem would be just the same the next day. There's a list of projects by my design wall and I just want to make a start on at least one of them.

New fabric arrived two days ago from the Kaffe Collection and four from Snow Leopard - Philip Jacobs 


this one is obviously Parrots, Snow Leopard range, bright and bold and that's what I like, but I find the fabric slightly heavy if that makes sense, just not as nice to handle as the KF printed ones. Washed and hung on the line in the rain to see if would soften, it didn't so I think this may go with my backing fabric collection, it may be a contender for using on the back of the Slashed Squares.

The other three from the range have a softer feel to them, the difference is noticeable when handling the new Brandon Mably fabrics.

Snow Leopard range


Brandon Mably

these ones from Brandon are a little out of my comfort zone but I loved the design and colours.
A few from Kaffe's new collection came along for the ride and needless to say I love them and can't wait to begin using them. I'm having to go with simpler patterns now and checking my Accuquilt dies it looks like there's no end to the projects on my list which will be do-able with the ones I have. They're so expensive here in New Zealand, even the mats which are needed.

The Spring weather, both sun and rain, have boosted the flowering and new leaves on trees, climbers and even a few of the roses, the Japanese Maple in the back garden has leaves just breaking out


and the purple Wisteria is beginning to put on a good show


A little re-arranging in my small studio has taken place slowly over the past few weeks, I think the present arrangement will be workable but I have more fabric to tidy and put in their respective containers.
One problem I can't seem to solve is whether to continue keeping fabric ranges separate as I do now, Kaffe, Anna Maria Horner, Tula Pink for example and there's an untold number of others but I find I'm hunting in quite a few baskets to find all the necessary blues or pinks or reds etc.  it would be easier if everything was just stored in colour regardless of designer, or solids, or patterned, something to think about but I'd be interested to know how you store your fabrics.

Time for me to decide on lunch, we're eating early today so I'll head to the kitchen. Before I go  I do hope you are all safe and well after the horrific weather happenings in the USA and Canada. Been thinking of you all.

Take care and Happy Quilting until next time

Maureen

Monday, September 19, 2022

End of an Era and quilt progress

Most of you will no doubt be aware that the 96yr old Queen Elizabeth ll died on September 8th at Balmoral in Scotland.  Being British born and bred and a royalist through and through this was the saddest news. 

70 years ago a little 5yr old girl on a sunny day was standing, with other pupils from the small four classroom school, all waving Union Jack flags, waiting for the new Queen Elizabeth to pass by with her husband Prince Philip. She had ascending the throne just a few weeks before and was touring parts of the country, much as King Charles will be doing shortly.  

After a long, long wait the cavalcade slowly approached and luckily the Queen was on our side of the
road, I can still see the scene so very clearly, she was wearing a stunning peacock green suit, I think silk, with matching hat, and had that wonderful smile for us all. She was crowned the year after and we were all glued to the television screen for a few hours.


Her smile was always a delight to see, especially when wearing her beautiful brightly coloured outfits
with those stunning hats.


Sadly this is the scene as I write now, she lies in state with the Imperial State Crown, the Sceptre and the Orb also placed there, sadly the photo with all regalia seem to have gone awol. The Crown is much, much brighter than I could get on this photo.


Now it is God Save The King.

OK, I will get onto quilting matters, I just had to get the above thoughts down on paper.
I haven't read blogs, not sent emails nor received them because my computer was not playing nicely, now fixed, thank goodness. 

Progress has been made with the quilt for grandson Charlie, he likes bright and bold and that's going to be what he gets. Blocks on the wall, no placement order of course I just wanted to put them up there as I stitched to check on colours used. The last quilt I made for him he was 6 years old, quite detailed, with medallion style borders, diamonds and so on, I had bought dyed fabric for the backing which was extremely bright, swirly and a mix of colours. He told me a couple of years ago that he still used his quilt even though it was now too small for his bed size, the interesting part was that he has never had his quilt right side uppermost and always had the back showing as he preferred all the colour!! I intended all along for this new quilt to be scrappy and busy looking, no definite pattern to it, I think it will work.



25 blocks in all are needed to make a 70" x 70" quilt, the design wall goes to the floor so plenty of room.
Still haven't been able to calibrate the colour settings on my screen due to the computer issues.

All for now, back to sewing all the pieces cut and ready to go through the machine. I can now read blogs again also!!

Maureen








Friday, September 2, 2022

A sweet Spring day

The first day of Spring arrived yesterday here in New Zealand. Such a beautiful sunny day, blue skies,  birds singing, the scent of freesias just blooming and I felt a true lightness of spirit and a return of energy. Isn't it amazing that each season has its special memories, mine are definitely of Springtime as a youngster in England.  

I took a few photos of the first Spring flowers in the garden, I'll show them at the end of the post.

Progress with Slashed Squares has been made thanks to another lighter splint, these were already cut as necessary before my fall. I have just four sewn up so far and the colours are somewhat brighter I feel in 'real life'. Something to deal with in my settings I think.








There are a few more on the wall whilst I play around to find combinations that I'm happy with, one that doesn't excite me is this one below, again the block is dulled down but I think the blue will have to go! This is still in four parts wth threads untrimmed

Whilst having to take a break from my quilting, housework, gardening and so on, I've had time to think!!
Gradually it dawned on me that I had too many thoughts racing along in my brain preventing me from  sleeping, I was constantly worrying about everything. Many quilting projects are whirling around, most are ones I'd really like to make a start on in the coming months  and also there are some which are languishing in their respective drawers. I've begun projects without truly thinking through  and which I actually now don't like and don't know why I began them, anyone else have these problems? My unwanted 5 large bags of scraps (I still have two tubs more which I'm keeping) and old books and projects are going to be given to the local school and hospice shop in the village. Boy do I feel better after making a decision!

On to my garden, the early flowers are just opening, wish you could smell the perfume from the freesias,


the forget-me-nots are white ones which suddenly appeared, they're now covering quite a large area, 


Clivias are blooming and providing fodder for the snails,


and where would we be without lemons freshly picked from the tree,


mustn't leave out one special garden inhabitant below

he visits every morning and sits on the decking rail by the dining area window driving poor Leila crazy, soon as he sees us put out the two apple halves he heads into the garden.

Oh, I forgot my two new pieces of fabric, the local shop still had these on their shelves and they've always been favourites of mine


so one metre of each came home with me.

That's all from me at the moment, enjoy the early days of Spring or Autumn and Happy Quilting.

Maureen





Monday, August 22, 2022

Just another manic Monday

 The post heading is tongue in cheek as there is presently nothing manic on Monday nor any other day at my place - I will fill you in shortly.

Remember I was busy making blocks for the Slashed Squares quilt for eldest grandson, last week I reached the required 25 blocks, I was also busily tidying and sorting fabric and I carried that through to a re-arranged layout all ready to really gets busy again.  Photos of the blocks below, this was the best I could achieve right now due to this,














so here we have top left, top right, bottom left, bottom right

I do have a reasonable photo of the beach at low tide


and thanks to another fall Wednesday in the house my right lower arm is encased as in the first photo.
Maneouvering around a chair I lost balance, went down and landed heavily smack on the backside!!
One leg tucked underneath (luckily no damage there) and my right arm - you guessed - outstretched breaking my fall.
Result badly bruised coccyx and sacrum, not fractured as initially thought, right wrist - fractured scaphoid bone, right shoulder n o broken bones but ultrasound Wednesday to see if further damage to the already torn tendon. End result a lot of pain in the affected areas, can  use fingers a little at one time with the r hand but my left now has to come into play - you will remember this was badly broken in January and is plated with only 70% use. Not a happy quilter right now and passing on thinking about the way forward.

It has taken numerous spells at the keyboard to write this in small blocks of time. Hopefully will be back again soon with a real  post. Will be reading your posts but may not be able to comment regularly.

Happy quilting

Maureen






Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Not a very exciting post!!!

 Almost four weeks since my last post and I'm afraid my quilting has been pretty much non-existent.
It's been a difficult few weeks, in fact a difficult and stressful year so far and I could even say two years, but things can only improve if a positive approach is taken, at least I do hope so.

My achievements since my last post have been: dealing with scraps


this box is 16" square and I have two of them, after removing larger pieces that I didn't want to dispose of
I ended with five bags each holding approximately 4lbs of scraps!!!

It gave me a real feeling of relief to see those empty and really good to iron these pieces to be kept and discover treasures long forgotten - a small helping below.




I have six drawers more of scraps still to be dealt to, these are each around 16" x 14" and are pretty well packed.



New stacking system was bought with fabrics still in the process of being colour sorted, these are holding 1/2 yards in one set and 1/4 yards in the other.


I'm trying to finish up writing this before heading for a visit to the dentist - my worst nightmare!!!
Two root canal fillings this morning and at 11.00am I shall be swallowing a cocktail of drugs.
Amoxicillin 2grams are needed because of my faulty aortic valve to protect my heart, and a Lorazepam (Ativan) tablet because I have a real fear of dental treatment, I only need to sit in the chair before I'm all ready to leap out again! A lot of this is really because of the fact that I have PTSD resulting from major surgery many years ago during which I came around during the operation, details of the experience I will not repeat here, suffice to say it was horrific. Any procedure at all has memories resurfacing.

I suspect when I return home I shall be just ready to reach this little beauty down and have a cup of tea



and be feeling like the withed orchid below


I shall enjoy a cuddle with this little beauty below



and if the roses were still blooming I would be enjoying the perfume of this glorious one
I think this one is Sharif Asma one bred by David Austin.



So, there we have it, hopefully in a few days I will have something to show you, although I am going to be hampered somewhat with the amount of time spent quilting as I now have only70% use in my left hand due to the damage from the broken wrist bones and my right shoulder is limited in movement, particular so if I try to rise my arm out to the side - not possible really and nothing more to be done as the torn tendon/muscle is not attached to the bone, I shall manage with limitations as do many people. Short spells of time with my sewing.

I'll finish up now as my tranquiliser is working rather quicker than I had thought and John would't want to come in my sewing room in 30 mins and find me totally out of it slumped over my keyboard!!

Keep well all of you and stay safe and I really do hope to be back in a few days.

Maureen








Sunday, July 10, 2022

Sunday - catching up

There are quite a few photos in this post, warning you ahead of time, my intended post one week ago never happened so I'm making up for that here. Towards the end of the post I make mention of the story of a quilt back in 2015, hope you can make it that far!

Fabric: I bought a pack of Tula Pink Tiny Beast range packed with little critters and some not so little.
She also brought out a collection of tiny dots and thin stripes in bright colours, these were added to my stash.



Current Project Progress: I'm plodding along slowly with my 16 patch in yellow/orange, the collection is growing nicely, here are the latest ones and this quilt could fit with the latest prompt from AdHoc Improvisational Quilters apart from the fact that it's definitely not improv! I do have a few other ideas for something quite different though.
   

Of course I'm also working on Slashed Squares using the tutorial by
Lynne at The Patchery Menagerie. Check out the Tutorials heading top of her blog page to be directed to purchase details, you'll also see a heading for Slashed Squares Quilts giving photos of quilts Lynne has made. 

The blocks for this quilt are going together so quickly, I can't wait until I reach the 'slashing' stage.  My latest batch are below







you can find the first seven sewn  in my last post HERE. I'm going with 25 blocks in all, at least at this stage I am but I'll review that when I'm nearing the finish line.

I've been so, so lax with machine quilting tops over the past few years and at last count I gave myself a huge shock - 24!!!! Some were more wall quilt size and truly it wouldn't take long to work through basting and machine quilting although there are a few which will be hand quilted. Here's a photo of the first one up for the machine, basted now.

The Northern Lights

  This quilt was made in 2015 - yes folks it's been languishing in line all that time.  Long time readers here   will have seen it before, I first posted at the time I took part in a Quilt Along with  Cultural Fusion Quilts, this was my take on Rail Fence. I wrote the back story behind     this quilt  you can find it HERE, hope you can find time to read,  our stories behind the quilts 
 we make can be every bit as important as the quilt itself.

Books: do I need more books I ask myself, I love books as much as fabric and two new ones arrived at the door


Congratulations if you've made it to the end of this post!!!
I have an appointment next week for the cortisone shot into the torn tendon in my shoulder so
it may be another couple of weeks before I get around to posting - see you then.

Keep safe and well and happy quilting.

Maureen