Sunday, 23 July 2017

New class plus other things all crafty

I spent yesterday with 14 members from Kapiti Quilters in Waikanae New Zealand, learning four different block construction and four different joining methods of Quilt As You Go.
The club hold their meetings at their local Bridge Club.  I have taught here before and love the great facilities and space.  Here's just a couple of snaps of our day.

I am attending a weaving class at Wellington Sewing Center.  We are using Ashford Rigid Heddle looms and our own yarn (mines from my stash - ah yes - have a yarn as well as a fabric stash). So much fun and maybe I'm getting slightly addicted!!

We carry around a very important and clever tool in our handbags, pockets or back packs.  Yes our mobile phone.  Use your camera to help with your crafting or creative work.  Here is an example.  One of our customers wanted to put a red boarder on her quilt (red is her favourite colour).  By taking photos we were able to guide her to look at other colour ways what would compliment her fabric.

The red is draining the colour out of her blocks and the blue is enhancing it.

I have had my knitting needles out again.   This time using Touch Alpine Mohair (12 ply 100gms), casting on 22 stitches using size 10mm needles.  Its gorgeous and quick to knit up. 1.9 meters long, sew ends together and you have a boofy cuddly cowl.

The alpine mohair hank below my cowl is called Whitebait.  Its also very cool.  I'm restraining myself from buying it. Click with our mouse onto the photo to enlarge it for a better look.

That's all from me. 

Happy stitching

Friday, 19 May 2017

Exhibitions, classes and Twined knitting

I have had a crazy 6 weeks so its been a while since I last posted.
Let me share some of the quilts I have seen and what some of my students have been making.

In April, Kapiti Quilters held their "Rapt in Quilts" exhibition.  Jo (owner of Wellington Sewing Center) and I had the pleasure of being one of the vendors at this event which was held at Southwards Car Museum.

The club members had to include this fabric in their challenge quilts.

Here are six of the challenge quilts. Very clever and I suspect these quilt makers had a lot of fun.

Other Quilts on Show
Pohutukawa by Sandra Killin
Best Contempory Quilt
A Mary Metcalf design

Soaring Compliments. Pattern designed by Caryl Bryer Falert.
A group of friends worked together making their own interpretation of this quilt.
Quilt makers:
 (top left to right) Judy Boyle, Bobby Duncan, Judith Dudson
(bottom left to right) Anne-Marie Dunlop, Barbara Hanaray Loarraine Murray

White Delight by Carol Denley

Dandelions by Sandra Killin

1388 Pieces by Sandra Killin

Pansy Beauty by Anne-Marie Dunlop
Best in Show

Crazy Patch by Judith MacDonald
Unfortunately my photograph was affected by lighting
For the Olive Grove by Paulette Meldrum

Kaleidoscope by Jacqui Balaam

Cocktail Twise by Carol Pedersen

Conway Album Quilt by Sheryl Meech

Night Flowers by Sheryl Meech
Best machine applique
Jo Morris (on the right) and me before the doors opened.

A group of quilters meet every Wednesday evening to work on their own projects and I am their to assist them - sort of like a mentor.  One member has been sick so these ladies decided it would be nice to make a quilt for her.  Over an eight week period they learnt how to paperpiece using one of Carol Doak's designs.
Here was the quilt top on my design wall which has now been completed and handed over last week to the recipient.

Last week I had the opportunity to attend Tote and Gloat a Quilting event in Palmerston North organised by Rose City Quilters.  I have only taken a few photos of this year's event.  Not all the quilts were labeled with the quilt makers details.

Over the last month I have been teaching a beginners quilting class.  Tops have been completed and quilts pinned ready for quilting.

This is Tammie's quilt.  Quite different for a first quilt.
The top has been made from her Mother's cardigans.  

Jenny's Dr Seuss

Maina's quilt top.  Notice the teaspoons?
If you don't have a pin closing tool, teaspoons work really well.
I had the opportunity to attend a Twined knitting class with Beth Brown-Reinsel from the U.S.
She specialises in traditional knitting.  Her examples were absolutely stunning.  You need to google her.

This is my cast on using three strands of yarn

This is the class effort at the end of the day. 
My cutting table is covered in fabric for my winter wardrobe plus I seem to have far to many UFO's.
Time to complete more projects.

One more thing to show of.  This stunning piece of knitting (Gallipoli) was made by Jo Morris.  It has been on display in the shop for April and May.  Poppy contributions were made by customers and the crotchet club of Tawa College.  Note the purple poppy?  That represents all the horses and messaging pigeons that died.

Happy stitching

Sunday, 2 April 2017

Completed projects this year

I have been taking a wee break from quilting and have been focusing on knitting projects.  I have been testing out some patterns that we currently sell at Wellington Sewing Center, plus doing a little experimenting.

First project completed this year was my 7 kg blanket.  Its on display in the shop which I had to wheel it in my large suitcase.
I used 7 x 1kg bumps of Ashford corridale sliver - natural stripe, 25mm circular needles and casted on 50 stitches.
I used the window seat to support the weight of the blanket as I knitted it.

50 stitches + 7 bumps = queen size

Ashford corridale sliver

My next projects - a series of children's knitted garments.
Cleckheaton seamless sweater size 8 knitted in Cleakheaton natruals
This pattern is knitted from the neck down on circular needles.
I did have to purchase an extra ball from the pattern recommendation.

Same pattern but knitted in Shephard Colour 4 me. Size 4
Again I used one more ball than what the pattern recommended.
This is a little cutie by touch yarns.  Knitted in size 5-7 years.
Two double knit yarns knitted together.
I used 5 balls of 100gm Ashford DK Te kapo

I have been looking at yarn bowls.  Some of them are amazing and very beautiful.  I would break a ceramic bowl and the wooden ones would be heavy in my bag so I need something a bit more practical.
So I started experimenting last night and this is what I finished up with this morning.
Finished product
I crochet my bowl (instructions at the end of this post) using two strands of DK yarn.
Then using my embellisher machine (mini felting machine), I felted the inside.
If you have one of these machines, place the right side facing up.  The felting will happen on the reverse.
Inside is felted
The outside still shows off the crochet stitches.

I created a loop and sewed on a shank button
Close the loop over your yarn and it should roll around nicely.
I felted the interior to prevent any loose wool fibres from attaching to the yarn I am knitting. I am using left over yarn from other projects but if your interested in making one, experiment with mixing yarns.  For example:
Here I am knitting the Hitchhikers shawl (Ravery by Martina Belm) using Ashford Opal sock yarn
to give a flash of colour and Alpaca Yarns 4ply as the base colour.

Now I struggle to read crochet patterns let alone write you a stitch by stitch account on how I made my bowl.  So hopefully you can follow these:
Using two strands of DK together make 4 chains into a round using hook size 6mm.
6 Double crochet to create a circle. 
Continue in double crochet rounds until the base if approx. 7" (18cm). Add 1 chain after each double crochet to keep your work flat.
(note: if you want a larger bowl, increase the base size)

This is my approximate width of the base.
Continue double crochet for three rounds without adding a chain after every stitch.  Your work should curve thus creating the base of the sides.
Work four rounds of treble crochet or whatever design you like until the sides measure 3" (8cm).
Work two rounds of double crochet to finish.

Felting the inside created a more sturdy bowl.  If you don't want to felt your bowl then I suggest you double crochet up the sides to make it more sturdy.

Add bling or whatever you like to add your personal touch.

Happy stitching