Saturday, 18 February 2017

Quilt for quilt con

When the Modern Quilt Guild released the theme of scale and the mustard, blue and green colour scheme for the 2016-2017 charity quilt challenge the Edinburgh Modern Quilt Guild (EMQG) decided that this was something we wanted to do!  Many months of discussions and planning resulted in us deciding on a underlying Scottish theme to the quilt.  For the theme of scale we decided that we would combine different sizes of a tartan inspired block with quilting of Scottish words for small and large.  We also decided that the colour scheme would also reflect the colours of the Scottish landscape and to further reinforce the scottish connection that we would use Karen Lewis, Blueberry Park fabric and original screen printed fabric in addition to the bella solids. It just so happened that Jo had a business meeting in Nov with Karen Lewis for their Thread House pattern and quilting retreat business collaboration and managed to source some of the fabric we required directly from the source! Huge thank you to Karen Lewis!
Cathlene and Robin were tasked to design a tartan inspired block and the scale inspired quilt setting.  Once the tartan inspired block and quilt setting was met with the approval of the whole EMQG,  a charity quilt sub-group made up of Barbara, Helen, Katie, Sheila, Margaret and Lucy (skinnymalinky) was set-up to lead the creation of the physical quilt and solve any problems! Block testing began in earnest.  

The improv-tartan block worked really well when made in the smaller scale but in the larger scale the tartan stripes became noticeably misaligned resulting in the loss of the tartan effect.  
After a bit of experimentation we discovered that if we made the large blocks about 20% bigger and then removed  a strip from the block that corresponded to the width of the new stripe to be added then the stripes matched up!  
We had two block making sessions and one quilt construction session in December where the charity quilt-sub group plus a few others volunteers got all the blocks made and put together into the the quilt top in Jo's shop. 

 The plan was to then pass the quilt to our long-arm quilter, Tatyana, to be quilted with the Scottish words over the Christmas holidays ready for binding in January.  However, Tatyana had a family crisis and was unable to take on the quilt so at the last minute Jo and Lynsey stepped in to avert the quilting disaster!  Lynsey, hand-quilted Scottish words onto the blocks over the holidays and then the trusty EMQG volunteers had a hand-quilting session at Jo's shop and at the guild meeting in early Jan to finish off the hand-quilting!  

Jo filled in the background of the quilt with an all-over Paisley design which has strong Scottish textile design links and attached the scrappy binding that Lucy H made over the holidays.

Cathy then took the quilt to hand sew all the binding and attach the sleeve - that's a lot of stitching so well done Cathy.

All that remained is for the label to made and attached and to send the quilt off! Phew,!

How utterly amazing is the finished quilt!

Sunday, 12 February 2017


Ahhhhhhh Gartmore, this stunning house seems to have become our annual retreat. 
After the roaring success of last years retreat the lovely Sheena (@auburnstitches) kindly volunteered to organize another. Let's face it, January is a pretty miserable month, ages to go till pay day, cold dark and miserable, all the hype of Christmas is over. So having this to look forward to is such a treat! It's all paid up for in advance so all you have to do is rock up with your sewing stuff and have fun!
We had the same cosy room to sew in, same lovely staff, same gorgeous food (OMG the food, the cake, the breakfasts .... ok diet begins in February 😉) what's not to love??
I actually don't know where to start! So I will just dive in, forgive me if this is not in chronological order but there is just so much to remember and get down.
Your intrepid blog writer had managed to injure herself, again! This seems to be a recurring theme ... never mind everyone looked after me, there were seven of us which is a nice number for the size of the room. We were all working on different things, some great things about the room, coal fire, mmmm toasty! Also huge big table to lay things out plus we also got to use a couple of the other rooms to lay things out on the floor.
So what were the crew working on?
Lucy was working on this quilt with gorgeous William Morris prints, I adore the yellowy mustard co-ordinating print, just make it for me. Lucy said she had never done Fmq before ... what? Seriously? Look at it! Amazing fmqing! You are a natural Lucy! 
What's next?? Awww I loved seeing this one come together, lovely sunny bright prints. Pauline was putting her bee blocks from the guild together. 
I could see Paulines sunny smile from my work station 😊.
On Friday night we had a quiz arranged by our fantastic organiser Sheena, here she is in full Bamber Gasgoine mode (I know I'm giving my age away 😂😂😂) 
Sheena puts her heart and soul into organising the retreats, we said it often enough during the weekend but I'll say it again here, thank you Sheena! The quiz was great fun, and we learned loads! This has to become a regular part!
The winning team!
Here is Sheena iwith the cushion which was one of the projects she was working on, it's to match the one she is holding up. So soft and warm, beautiful. 
Oooohhh mysterious 😊😊😊 Margaret looking all Mata Hari! Hand quilting her stunning batik quilt. 
Helen took the opportunity to lay out her charm square quilt on one of the large floors, loving the corals and teals.
Helen also worked on this fun childrens panel, all some texture with prarie points.
Not content with these two, Helen also worked on her bee blockd from the guild, I adore this string quilt, I'm really going to have to make one!
 Now gimme an awwwwww 😊😊😊
Here is Sheena with Gartmore bear made by the lovely Janice. Gartmore got quite a few hugs throughout the weekend.
Janice also made this totally adorable pinafore, you might not be able to make it out but the pocket is a William Morris strawberry thief print.
Last but not least Ruth and I had decided to make the Seahorse pattern by Tartankiwi.
We managed to get a fair bit done, I got the body done and Ruth managed the head, so here is our Frankenstein seahorse 😊
On the Saturday night Sheena organised a quilt competition the theme was red, here are all our entries, can you guess which won?
 Ooohhhhh aaaarrrrrgggghhhhh I can't find a picture of Ruth's entry, you can see the bottom of it in the above picture, just take my word that it is sooper fab??? 
The winning entry was Helens the first picture above, pretty stiff competition!
So we had to get some group pictures, as you can see the ladies took this seriously .....
Ok take two?
*sigh* serious faces please chaps!
Oh I give up!!!! But I think you get a flavour that this was fab fun and certainly to be repeated.
Let's say thanks to Sheena again.
Rightyho, we will say cheerybye for now, normal meeting blogs will resume. 
But Gartmore, this is merely au revoir, not goodbye 😊.

Thursday, 19 January 2017

January - lets banish the blues

 I can guarantee that there is nothing more certain to banish the January blues than a meeting of the modern quilt guild! 
I was late and had hardly sat down when Ruth and Sheena said "get a picture of Cathlene she matches the quilt!" Whoah yea that's how we  rock n roll at the guild, we match our clothes to the charity quilts! Seriously, Cathleen was working hard with the rest of the members finishing off the hand quilting on our charity quilt for quilt con. It's been an epic journey and a real group effort.
First up on the show and tell is our own Jo Avery (yes she's ours, keep your hands off 😊😊) Jo always amazes me with the way she combines her business with a huge sense of charity and helping others. No opportunity to help those in need goes past whether it is Maggie's Centers, Siblings together, Social Bite. It's rare in this day and age so let's celebrate it! At the stitch gathering the year before last Jo came up with the fab idea of everyone making their own tickets, we had to choose our favorite word. All the blocks have been made into quilt tops and will be donated to charitable causes. How sweet is this! Jo was looking for volunteers to help quilt the tops, Jo is very good at getting volunteers 😉😉 seriously who wouldn't want to quilt a fun top like this!
Well this mini really cheered us all up a fun and bright quilt to brighten up January from Cathlene, this is for the Modern Quilt Guild swap, a lucky partner will be getting this one soon.
Ok can we all just agree I am not David Bailey?? But if you peer very closely and zoom in you can see Paulines fab sewing tidy she got in the swap at Christmas. It's a nice picture of some of the newer members of the guild though!
You all follow the lovely Irene @sewhappilyretired in IG right?? If not why not?? 😉😉 she is sooper lovely, has the most gorgeous shoes and makes beautiful things like this zippy pouch!
I can't do hand piecing but am in awe of folks who can like the amazing Madeleine @madeline_bonner here are some of her gorgeous La Passaglia cogs, amazing fussy cutting.
That's all for now, but lots more news coming, we are a busy bunch at the Edinburgh Modern Quilt Guild.