Another book exhibition in town and another hobby book! How cool is that :)
This one is on applique.

While I have tried several needle crafts, applique has remained the daunting one. Hope this book makes it more approachable.

If you ask me,”Does it really take ten mins?”
I would sit back, relax and say “Yes, it does!” And its ready in no time :)

photo 8

I made the ‘lil one time it while I pinned and sewed. So I know :)

    What you need:

Fabric for cushion cover 16.5″ X 36″
fabric marker
Pins
Measuring tape
Pillow form/cushion

Method:

    1. Take your cushion and check its size. Mine was 16X16 inches and that’s the size I will go with for the covers. It would fit snugly.

    photo 1

    photo 2

    Cut the fabric 16.5″ X 36″. You can tweak it according to the size of your cushion. This is how you calculate. The height of the cushion + 0.5″ as you will sew on top and bottom with 1/4th inch seam.
    The length of the fabric needs to cover the front and back of the cushion(16″X2=32″) and then double broad fold on each side(another 2.5″). Rest would be the overlap.

    2. Ford the fabric in half. Mark the center and pin at 8″ on either side. This will be 16″ wide and form the front of your cushion/pillow. It will work as a guide for you while folding and sewing.

    photo 3

    photo 5

    3. Pin and fold the shorter sides of the fabric inside, as shown in the picture below.

    photo 6

    4. When you fold the fabric inwards (like a C tissue fold), you will see that it overlaps. This is fine. As the pillow is puffed up, this will prevent the rear of the inner pillow form revealing itself.

    photo 4

    5. Now turn it inside out and sew the top and bottom of the cushion.

    photo 7

    6. Turn out and iron.

Discovered a new shop ‘Dhaga ghar’ near the local train station at Lowel Parel-Mumbai and bought some lovely thread along with fusible interfacing for pouches/bags I intend to sew as gifts.

Some of the swaps I have received had this lovely thread used for quilting and I had always wondered where people got it from. Now I have added them to my stash.

Sunday Stash 24 Aug'14

Just love the neons.

A scarp quilt has been on my To-do list for long so when I received this book, Scrap Quilts-Fast and fun as a gift and turned to page 109, I was convinced on giving the ‘String Squares’ a go. As usual though, am not following the pattern in the book.

string squares

Let me write my own tutorial and add modifications to the design !!

Having recently returned from a paper piecing workshop, paper piecing seems the obvious choice :)

Quick Strip Quilt: Basic Block Template
———————————————————
All you need:

-A4 sheets
-School rulers(1″ and 1.5″)
-Pencil and eraser
-Fabric scraps and leftovers
-Cutting mat and rotary cutter

Do note that the paper template and hence the block is 8″ when raw and 7.5″ when complete and sewed into a project. You can alter the size of the square and the width of the bands as per your need.

Preparing the paper templates

1. Take an A4 sheet and mark a square 8″ X8″ in size. I used a pencil so the marking is light.

Paper template 1

2. Fold the square to mark the diagonal. Open and draw a line across the diagonal. this will be our guiding line. Place your 1.5″ width scale and align the center of the scale with the diagonal line as seen in the picture below, such that the center of the page has a 1″ width set of parallel line across the diagonal.

Paper template 2

3.Continue to draw parallel lines such that:
The center pair is 1″ apart
then .5″ apart
then 1″ apart and so on until you reach either end of the paper (moving outwards from the diagonal). Please refer to image below for better clarity.

Paper template 3

4. The center 1″ strip would be coloured and so will be each of the alternate strips(.5″). All white strips would be 1″ wide.

Paper template 4

Trim the square and remove extra paper from all sides. Here I have coloured them for easy reference. Also, when you photocopy the coloured areas would look darker and hence easy for guidance and you wouldn’t confuse between white and coloured strips.
Once you are sure that the template is ready, make as many photocopies of it as required. You will sew on these paper templates and tear off the paper at the end .

Cutting fabric and sewing the Block

1.Take all your long scraps. I didn’t have much so I cut strips from my yardage.

Fabric scraps

2. Please note that when you cut your fabric, all white strips are to be cut 1.5″ in width. This is where your 1.5″ width student scale comes to use. It is not used during paper template process.
The center fabric is 1″ when completed , hence has to be cut at 1.5″ width. I chose a maroon tone for this.

All the other coloured fabric would be 1″ when cut(and hence 0.5 inch when completed).

Cut strips

3. Now take a paper template and place the printed side facing down. You basically just see a plain white sheet. Place the maroon along the diagonal and white on top, with right sides of both facing each other.
So, paper template facing down, maroon strip along the diagonal facing up and white strip facing down aligned on the maroon. Hold it against the light to ensure your fabric covers the center band.
Refer image below.

Ensuring correct alignment

4.Pin the strips in place. Always pin on the seam away from you, not like seen below. Turn the paper and sew on one guided line.

Pinning

5. Turn to the non printed side of the paper, remove the pins and nail press the seams open.You will have one printed and one white band side by side.This is the only strip you have to be really careful about.

Join the third strip

6. Next, place a coloured fabric over the white fabric so that the other seam is aligned for both fabrics. Pin towards the inner seam. Turn and sew on the next guided line. You need not check it against the light but you can never be more careful, just do it as convenient.Turn to teh fabric side, remove pins and needle process. Continue like this until you reach the end of the paper with alternating coloured and white strips.

And the next

7. Iron the untrimmed square inside out. If your coloured strips are not all cotton, then ensure you set your iron to the setting for the fabric that has the lowest tolerance, else you might have some fabric crinkle up and burn.

Uncut square

8. Trim the square to size using your cutting mat and rotary cutter using the paper template as guide.

Trimmed square

Prepare as many blocks you require and use them in various colourful projects ! I have a couple in mind…will soon post on them as well.

Returned from the Quilting weekend to find this lovely book waiting for me, a gift from DH :)

Sunday Stash 17 Aug

I must warn you before you start reading this post…

This will not just be a photo heavy post, it will also be looooong and will have my wild ramblings on having thoroughly enjoyed a weekend, quilting with friends and learning at least 3 techniques in the process.

It all started with an innocuous statement that a fellow quilter made on a social network site displaying a desire to learn esoteric quilting skills. Shruti, from 13 Woodhouse road, not just agreed to do a workshop for us but also invited us to stay over at her place and have a taste of her hospitality. I still can’t get over the fact that someone can be so generous with her designer fabric as she is with her skill and learning — a single point agenda of giving the ‘quilting cause’ a boost!

Shruti and her muse

Shruti and her muse

Thats Shruti for you. She lives in Sangli, a quaint town in Maharashtra, about 400 km from Mumbai, but the journey by road takes almost 6 -7hours.

We, 4 students from Mumbai boarded the bus on a rainy Thursday night for an overnight bus journey to Sangli. The first glimpses of Sangli reminded me of my own village …reminiscent of the paddy fields back home in my village which I stopped visiting after my school days for varied reasons : both voluntary and forced…a strange nostalgia engulfed me as we crossed the Varna river much in spate after the August rains. There were sugarcane fields on both sides of the road, some so close that it seemed we could just lean out of the window and touch them,all lush green and wonderful in the morning light. We were welcomed by her family with open arms and hot morning tea and biscotti. Such warm people …they just filled our hearts with warmth. All of us were keen to visit her outhouse turned into the studio, we fondly remember from her blog as 13 Woodhouse Road. Post breakfast we rushed there like eager little kids and were welcome to a lovely large workshop with high-end sewing machines and beautiful wall quilts that adorned the walls.

Apsara aali by Shruti

Apsara aali by Shruti

Houses by Shruti

Houses by Shruti

Steve Jobs portrait quilt

Steve Jobs portrait quilt

As the oohs and aahs settled down, we were read out the Miranda rules,ie, the learning schedule for the next 2 days. We started with the flying geese paper piecing method on the first day and dived into her designer scrap bin to get our colorful geese out, each picking neutrals to go with them.

Admiring her quilts

Admiring her quilts

We made some wonderful paper pieced flying geese blocks in black and grey and then,an improvised method by reversing the fabric usage, using scraps as the background. It was great fun.

flying geese

flying geese

She had all the notes and templates printed with the names written on them. Couldn’t have expected the workshop to be more organized than this. Lunch time was time to order in food, hot rolls with coke and then, back to work starting with trapunto.

chai time

chai time

I remember looking at it and thinking, OMG this is impossible to make. How on earth did she make it. More importantly, does she really believe that she can make a maladroid like me work on silk and make such intricate designs!! Hmmmm… brave girl!

Flying geese 1

Flying geese 1

But with her step by step instructions, it did get less intimidating and we were almost half way there by the time we closed the workshop for the day.

Then she treated us to boating in the Varna-Krishna river confluence at sunset.

Ferry me across the river

Ferry me across the river

Life couldn’t have been more tranquil. Post that we returned to the bustle of the local market to buy fabric from a local shop, her little fabric nook. That however wasn’t the end of the day, the excitement continued as we were welcome home to wonderful aromatic biryani and we laughed and joked like school girls way into the night. While the nip in the air was actually welcome, we also loved the abundance of handmade quilts that she provided for comfort and warmth.

Even her doormat was quilted !!

quilted doormat by Shruti

quilted doormat by Shruti

Second day started with us getting back to our unfinished trapunto quilts and learning how to make pouches. We completed our trapunto projects just in time to board a bus back home.

Sonalee_trapunto

Sonalee_trapunto

The day was characterised by timely clicks and rounds of fabric fun!

The gang

The gang

gifts exchange

gifts exchange

The most enjoyable of all fabric games was when she threw fabric blindfolded and anyone who caught it, got it !! As we boarded the night bus back home, the laughter and cheer eventually died down and all I remembered was
Wordsworth

‘ The music in my heart I bore,
Long after it was heard no more’

Sonalee with Shruti

Sonalee with Shruti

A friend is recovering from a surgery and yellow is her favourite colour. Originally, I planned to just send her this yellow bright polka-dot hot pad but this morning as I chanced upon a pin, a very bright sunny coaster on Pinterest, I wanted to make her a pair and send across along with the hot pad. This being the month of Ramzaan she would be fasting the entire day. I just hope she likes my gifts and uses it in the evening when she breaks her fast, at the time of Iftar :)

1

the yellow coasters are from a tutorial by Marie, from her blog and can be found here. However I will just reiterate it here, more to myself so I can fall back to this when I want to make a few more.

2

Tutorial
(adapted from Marie with only change in language, no change in instruction. she is the owner of the design and tutorial)

Row 1: Chain 4 and join with slip stitch to form a ring

Row2: Chain 3 which forms the first double crochet(DC) and continue with 11 more DCs and ens with a slip stitch on the 3rd chain that you initially started the row with. Total 12 DCs, with 11 of them originating from the well of the ring.

Row 3: Again start with 3 chain, one DC into the same hole from where the chain originated and then 2 DC in each of the holes from there on; 24 DCs in all.

Row 4:
chain 2, which is considered the first HDC and then made another HDC into the same hole. Continue with 2HDCs in each hole.

Row 5: The rays of the sun: chain 5, then turn back on the same chain and after missing 1 stitch, 1SC, 1HDC, 1DC and 1TC. This forms the triangle. join it to the base after 5 chains with a Slip stitch, followed by a single crochet in the next chain. proceed with the other triangles similarly and close when done with a loop.

Cut yarn after leaving an inch. Using a crochet hook thread in the yarn end into the coaster labyrinth so as to make it disappear into your work.

This is a very easy coaster pattern and took me a lot lesser than an hour to make a pair. One can make half a dozen in different colours to help identify wine glasses for guests. The final size of the coasters turned out to bee 4.5inch each.

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