Thursday, April 30, 2015

Beautiful new quilt from Katrina Hadjimichael

Sydney quilter, designer and teacher Katrina Hajimichael has posted photos of the latest quilt  in her Jane Austen series.

'Lambton' is the fictional village near the Pemberley estate in Pride and Prejudice, which might have been based on the real town of Bakewell (although recent evidence questions this long held view).

The photos so far are close-up views of individual applique blocks, showing the detail of the intricate and varied custom quilting by Helen Hayes. Contact details to book for a series of Lambton workshops in 2016 are included.

Katrina's Jane Austen quilts are featured in the current issue of Australian Patchwork and Quilting, Volume 24, Number 10.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Quilts on exhibition

Lots of lovely quilts to look at  by following these links ...
  • ... and a little closer to home, Eastwood Quilters are holding their two yearly show this coming weekend, 1st -3rd May at Brush Farm, Eastwood

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

From Fairholme, to brighten up this dreary, stormy week ...

Lynette returned from her trip to Europe, followed immediately
by a week in the country, and the very next day produced this
lovely sashed 9 patch in 30s reproduction fabrics - magic!
It did not, magically, leave a visible hole in her 30s
 repro stash ... 
It is a generous donation to our community quilt collection - 
thanks Lynette, we don't know how you did it!
Elizabeth appliqued over 1900 pieces of fabric over 11 months
(she thinks that is a long time to take to make one quilt -
we assured her it wasn't). The design is her own, including
the thistle for Scotland, the rose for England, the shamrock
for Ireland and the daffodil for Wales. Her hand quilting
is intricate and beautiful.
The backing is this vibrant print, bought like all of the fabric
Elizabeth used, from Sydney based online shop, Fabric Garden

Visit Miriam's blog, Sew Miriam to see her very British, red white and blue Sew Together bag.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

2015 AQC/ Bernina Australia Awards

The 2015 Australasian Quilt Convention closed in Melbourne today, after four very full days.

The Bernina Australia Awards were announced at the AQC Gala dinner last night. Photos from the evening are on the Bernina Australia Facebook page, as are the Best of Australia finalists, and others from the four day show. The Best of State Winners from which the Best of Australia is chosen are also on the Bernina Australia website

National Best of Australia Award:
Linda White from Victoria, for Elenor Jean (the one with 22,500 hexagons!)

AQC Awards presented by Expertise Events:

The 2015 Rajah Award was presented to Di Ford-Hall.
The Rajah Award acknowledges the outstanding contribution by an individual to quilting in Australia.

The 2015 Lut-Da Award was presented to Gwen Parry.
The Lut-Da Award goes to a quilter who has made an outstanding contribution to their local or quilting community via the medium of quilting.

The Shining Light Award was presented to Isabella Noble.
The Shining Light Award recognises achievement by a junior quilter (up to age 18)

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Modern pieced animal quilt blocks

If you can make a basic Drunkard's Path block, you can easily make one of the cleverest and cutest sets of pieced animal blocks that ever got itself quilted.  Dani Miller's online Wee Animal Quilt tutorial caught the attention of Cindy of Live a Colorful Life, who produced her version, Animal Planet, for her little grandson.  The two blog posts together feature many excellent photos of the process and the finished quilts.
  • Dani Miller on Instagram: @knitty34
  • Live a Colorful Life on Instagram:@liveacolorfullife
One of our members' test block for
Elizabeth Hartman's Fancy Fox pattern

Elizabeth Hartman, of Oh Fransson! fame is also renowned for her growing menagerie of very cute and clever pieced animal blocks (kittens, foxes, hedgehogs, whales, with bunnnies, owls and others in development).  Her website/blog is currently under reconstruction for a relaunch at the end of this month, but you can see images and purchase patterns from her online shop in the meantime, and several local quilt shops (such as Cottage Quiltworks and Kim Bradley Creations) stock print editions, and have sample quilts on display.
  • Elizabeth Hartman on Instagram: @elizabethagh

Friday, April 17, 2015

'Living Colour' exhibition opens at Gosford tomorrow (18th)

If you missed the Living Colour exhibition at the 2014 Sydney Quilt Show, or if you want to see it again, it is opening tomorrow, 18th April 2015 until 27th May, at the Gosford Regional Gallery, just an hour up the M1 from our neighbourhood. The exhibition is curated by Brenda Gael Smith, who will be doing several floor talks - dates and times are on the website.

The Gallery is set in a Japanese garden, with a beautiful shop and cafe onsite, as well as excellent exhibition spaces.

Community sewing Saturday (2)

Late last year, Robyn Evans at Patchwork on Pittwater donated a quantity of scrap fabrics to our community stash, and we committed to using them for our end-of-year challenge. They were kitted up, supplemented by a few other fabrics from the community stash, and we made sets of large and small bordered squares, ending up with enough blocks for five quilts for children. The pattern for he blocks and the layouts are adaptations of  'Freezeframe', from Judy Laquidara's 2012 book 60 Pieced Quilt Borders: Mix and Match.

The first quilt is finished - the red and white binding 
highlights the flashes of red in the blocks. The last borders 
of the small blocks constitute sashing, speeding up
construction of the top. Georgie sewed the blocks together, 
quilted it and attached the binding. Pat sewed the binding down. 
The second set of blocks were more of a challenge
to set together - they are the larger blocks left over after
the first four used all the small blocks. Jo-Ann and Nerida
did a sterling job auditioning sashing and layouts.
A black on white print came to the rescue when everything 

else didn't look quite 'right'It will be finished next time with 
more sashing, lime corner stones, and a border.
Dawn worked all day making a few extra blocks for the 
third quilt ...making it up to the final borders on the day. 
The outer border fabric has been in our community stash 
for a year or so, just waiting for the right place in a quilt.
Two more tops to be put together and four to quilted, and this challenge project will be complete.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Jen Kingwell: a quilter/designer of many parts

Melbourne quilter, designer, teacher, and owner of Amitie Textiles (in Gardenvale, Melbourne), Jen Kingwell is immersed in the quilting community, with her first book published by FW Media, and fabric collection for Moda both released in the last few weeks. She is also in demand internationally as a teacher and speaker.

You might already know Jen Kingwell's name as the designer of popular quilt patterns such as Green Tea and Sweet Beans, Steam Punk, Midnight at the Oasis and many others

Her Gardenvale fabric collection is coming onto the shelves of local fabric shops right now in precuts and yardage, and can be seen on the Moda blog - you might need to be quick to order/buy it, as it is already very popular. A quick Google search will take you to many beautiful quilts made, and in the making, using it. Or you could start with Red Pepper Quilts'  Gardenvale Kansas Dugout Quilt blog post.

The book Quilt Lovely is definitely on our  current wish list for our library.  It is readily available in local quilt shops, and online now.

You can see and hear Jen Kingwell talking about her love of quilting, and favourite tips in these videos (and seven others listed here) recorded by the Fat Quarter Shop at their studio:

Question and Answer with Australian Moda Fabric Designer Jen Kingwell

Gardenvale Fabric Collection by Moda Fabrics and Jen Kingwell 

Added 18th April 2015:

Quilt Lovely - An Interview with Jen Kingwell, 
Poppyprint, 17th April 2015
A 'lovely' interview by Canadian blogger, Krista Hennebury, touching on Jen Kingwell's thoughts about quilting in Australia and in the UAE, as well as the book and fabric range

Monday, April 13, 2015

This week at Fairholme ... two by two

Elaine W has made a gorgeous pair of bags for her 4 and
6 year old granddaughters, based on Miriam's pattern.
Elaine will be delivering them to the girls in Germany
in a few weeks - we think they will love them.
Janice made two of Judy Newman's hexagon dilly bags for friends,
 from her beautiful fabric stash - see those fussy-cut bees
in the blue and white? Now Janice is making one for
herself too, in Liberty fabrics.
Georgie has also been working in pairs - she
 made quilts this last week for  twin babies, 

a little girl and a little boy ...
... a fresh bright pattern, with a distinctly modern
vibe. They were finished just in time for the
christening on Saturday.
Auditioning thread for quilting ... and yes, that is a very pink
quilt made by 'Blue Sue', for her favourite little neighbour.
Nerida is getting ready for winter hand quilting on this
big beauty, adapted from Kathy Doughty's 'Retro Starburst' 

in Material Obsession 1. The feature fabric is Anna Maria 
Horner's 'Garden Party' set between 18in Courthouse Steps blocks. 
Because of its scrappy feel, Nerida calls it 'Oh No - It's Boho!' 

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Community sewing Saturday (1)

We held our April community sewing day on Saturday, instead of our usual Thursday to enable some members who can;t make Thursdays to take part. We also took the opportunity to make a shared lunch for everyone, of soup (made by Jill), quiche (made by Miriam), bread (including a really nice rosemary, thyme and garlic loaf made by Roslyn), fruit and the remains of morning tea supplied by Elaine and Nerida - it was so enjoyable that we were too busy eating and swapping recipes to take photos of the spread.

Thank you to the twelve plus members who came along (it was a bit of a shifting population), and made it such a productive day.

This bright and cheerful quilt grew from a pile of 4" half square
triangles and four patch blocks that were donated to our stash
some time ago when their original owner ran out of puff -
Elaine B has transformed them into chevrons, finished with
a border from the fabric stash. She machine quilted in a cross
hatch - her first attempt, and a great success.

Dawn found some complimentary borders for these sweet pink
panels in the community stash, and in no time they were a
child's quilt.
These batik pickle dish blocks 'rested' in our community
stash for some time - now joined together and with two batik
borders the quilt is ready for quilting, with a
complimentary multi-coloured

Elaine W put together a whole quilt top on Saturday, working
with some richly coloured fabric from her own stash and some
from the community stash.
She also makes an excellent chocolate cake!

We put our colour specialists to work to see if the stash could
offer up something to give these blocks a lift.
Pat is binding the fourth and final quilt to be made from blocks
made by members for our 2013 end-of year challenge.
The blocks are made in the style of Sunday Morning Quilts
'Missing U' quilt, with Japanese style fabrics.
Roslyn and Pat each made a number of blocks to set with the
two blocks from the original challenge contributions.
The first three quilts made from the other 45 challenge quilts
were completed and donated last year. The blocks are a lot of
fun to make, so we might well do it again.

We also made progress on putting the end-of-2014 challenge blocks together, on Saturday - photos will be posted shortly.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Pool noodle hacks for quilters

These ideas are not original, and many quilters have been using them for years, but if you haven't seen them, they might just give you a 'why didn't I think of that?' moment. The humble polystyrene pool noodle (about $2 in a $2 shop) is light, easy to cut to the size and shape you need, and have found a range of uses amongst quilters ...

As a block roll, with the outer edge secured by a pin or two.
Large and small quilts can be rolled around a noodle.
Small quilts can be layered (this one has two mini quilts layered together).
As a pin cushion, especially useful to keep basting pins secured and
open without tangling (see Deborah Louie's blog post, here).
Store pre-made or left-over binding without creasing, secured
with a pin - easier to find than free floating strips!
Would work for pre-cut strips, and bias strips.
Being hollow, the noodle can easily be cut cross-wise or
length-wise with a bread knife ...
A length-wise cut will give your pin noodle a stable base.
They come in lots of colours, so you could colour coordinate, or colour code ... lots of ways to get carried away.  Google 'pool noodle craft' for more ideas and tips than you can or want to ever use!

Brenda Gael Smith's blog post on her blog Serendipity and the Art of the Quilt about a series of textile conservation workshops she attended includes reassurance about the safety of pool noodles for storing/rolling quilts, and additional tips, and some very useful tips on packing and mailing quilts.