I love to sew, mainly quilts and bags. I am 59, married to Fred and have one son, Matthew who is 20. I enjoy embroidery and applique and prefer to machine piece and quilt my projects. I love my vintage Singer sewing machines especially my Featherweight 222K. My love of sewing I believe comes from my Grandmother - I still have the drawings she made for me to embroider on tea towels many many years ago!

Slideshow & Gallery (click to go to Picasa album)

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Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Featherweight sewing....and loving it!


The Featherweight Portable Thread Stand arrived from April 1930's Sewing Shop, it 's great!  Makes sewing with cross wound thread so much easier and filling a bobbin works perfectly with this stand - I used to hold the thread up high coming off the spool to wind a bobbin, now the stand does that for me!

I am making more Market Bags still using up the lovely vintage sheets and curtains.

Beautiful day here, will head off to the gym soon and then have an afternoon coffee for a change!  I have the feelers traced on to the butterflies, ready to stitch today.

Cheers from Helen

Sunday, 17 August 2014

PREPARING TO ADD THE BINDING

SMOOTH OUT THE BORDER

TRIM UP THE SIDES PARALLEL WITH THE LAST SEAM

MAKE SURE THE CORNERS ARE A TRUE 90 DEGREE ANGLE (THIS ENSURES A NICE MITRED BINDING CORNER)

Then go out for coffee with best friend:-)

I'll be sewing the binding on tonight!

Cheers from Helen

TAPE,PIN,SEW

Preparing the quilt top for straight line quilting around the border.... I lay down the blue painters tape pinning it down as I go, trim each corner so I can just keep sewing all the way around.  The pins are needed to hold the tape well on such long strips .  If I'm using the tape for a line of quilting with no corners to turn then I just lay the tape down as I go.

Almost done!

In using the new Dritz quilting pins I purchased recently - love them!  So fine and sharp but with the large head so I can grasp them!

Once this quilting is done I'm on to the binding :-)

The rain has gone :-(. But I'm still sewing today.

Cheers from Helen

Saturday, 16 August 2014

QUILTING THE KITTIES!

Doing the free motion quilting around the appliqué - using the new open toe foot I purchased from America - I was able to quilt nice and close to the edge but the foot makes a clunk clunk sound which the other free motion foot I have does not!  Any ideas ?

I have mentioned before about the aluminium bobbins I'm now using in my Brother PQ1500.... Well I just have to say again I LOVE THEM!   My quilting has never been so neat and the stitches are so perfect!  

It's raining!  Lovely sewing weather and that's what I'll be doing all day tomorrow!

Happy sewing,
Cheers from Helen


Saturday, 26 July 2014

IT'S A LONG WAY AROUND A QUILT

Sewing the binding down on my "vine" quilt .... Seems to go on forever!

Warm weather so not as pleasant to be working on a quilt ... Could be rain coming- hope so !  Our hill is do dry, it looks terrible.


We are out enjoying a coffee at Kitty and the Bean..  Off home soon to sew!

Happy sewing!
Cheers from Helen

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

"PEEK-A-BOO"

"Peek-a-Boo" quilt for Oliver
pegged out on the clothesline to get a better photo

"Peek-a-Boo" 

I always include a book with the quilt,
baby Oliver is only 6 months old but
Spot is always a good read!

and it's kind of a peek-a-boo book as it opens out to reveal
more pictures.
Triangle label (thanks Bonnie Hunter of Quiltville!) -
a quick way to add a label when
you have run out of inkjet printable fabric!

I love a quick quilt and this one was certainly that :-)     A few embroidered pieces waiting in a box, some scraps from the scrap pile, a backing fabric just begging to be used up and a piece just the right size for the binding - perfect!

I usually do a computer printed label but I've run out of the inkjet sheets so I did the quick triangle label method that Bonnie Hunter uses - a thick pigma pen to do the writing and it was all done in minutes!

Quilted with straight line tramlines (as I call them) in the sashing, and a square inside the four patch blocks (I use blue painters tape to form the square and just sew around that!)  It's always a quandary as to how to quilt the embroidery or applique blocks so in this instance I left them alone except for the little duckies, I ditch quilted down the yellow pieces.

I wanted a 1/2" binding on the front so I tried the binding method where you leave excess batting and backing beyond the quilt front - I left a 1/4".   The only mistake I made was that I forgot to attach the binding along the edge of the quilt front with a 1/4" seam...... I attached it at the edge of the batting/backing and used a 1/2" seam allowance which resulted in the desired effect --I wanted the outside sashing/border to be the same width as the inside sashings but still wanted a 1/2" binding, but the binding ended up quite bulky.  It's done now and came out okay but I will remember next time to attach the binding to the top and not the outside edges if I am using this method again.

The quilt is washed and dried ready to deliver.  I always prefer to wash a quilt I am gifting as then I know it's all ready to be used and as I always use a colour catcher in the wash, I will know if any of the fabrics ran in the wash.  I also include a couple of colour catchers in a ziplock bag with the quilt.

So my Peek-a-Boo quilt is finished.....  now what to do?   :-)

Happy Sewing!
Cheers from Helen