Monday, July 16, 2012

All Roads Lead to Frida

Well, so it seems at the moment anyway. Last weekend I visited a few places I hadn't been to for a while and was richly rewarded by treasures beyond my wildest imaginings. I found these wonderful mirrors which I snapped up.

The woman in the shop thought I must have been watching them and finally made a decision - Oh no, I assured her. I had just seen them for the first time and immediately know they need to move to my house. Nothing Like a snap purchase decision!

The family were a little taken aback (I don't know why really - they should be used to it) and there is still debate over just where they will hang. I had thought the bathroom but my husband wasn't so sure he wanted Frida's gaze of silent assessment looking at him every time he ventured in there.

With that success under my belt, I headed to Asia Gallery - I thought I needed some more red for the quilt I am working on at the moment. I was basically spoilt for choice. They had just had another shipment in and the pile in my favourite $5 bin was literally taller than me. I have never seen anything like it. Deciding was almost impossible and there was no way of getting through the pile to see all the treasures buried in there....

What was a fabric loving girl to do?? So another 8 kimono have moved to my house. These are the red's...

Just loved this - don't think it has ever been worn

This on the other hand has been - by me. I've worn it twice now. Its a heavy wool ikat (not sure what the Japanese term for it is), jacket length with the square neckline and domes rather than the full length kimono. It's perfect for this time of year and is helping to brighten up my rather dull winter wardrobe.

In the meantime I've also been working away on the new quilt project. I've decided to chain stitch onto the centre of the crosses. This may be at risk of turning into the most epic quilt project ever ever now I've decided to do this hand work on each block, but it is a nice project to have sitting in front of the fire of an evening. I think there will be about 100 of these blocks in the quilt, so it should keep me going for a while!

I'm starting out by using up some of the threads I already have. This red thread is a Tentkulum stranded cotton which I bought several years ago along with a blue version. They are called Painter's Threads - so it will probably be no surprise that the name of this shade is Frida.

As I said - all roads lead to Frida!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Regaining my Quilting Mojo

I've been very off the pace lately with my stitching - and I've been really missing it. So over the last month or so I've been taking concerted actions to get back behind the machine and moving on.
I started slowly - went to a few quilt events, tried to find some inspiration among the fabric - and low and beyold its starting to reap dividends.

I'm pleased to say that Frida Kahlo is finally finished - and even better it is currently gracing my bed and keeping me warm as the cold weather hits. Of course once I pulled finger it really didn't take that long to do - funny that! It's simply quilted with mostly vertical lines in a verigated red thread.

I'd chosen this thread almost before the quilt was even begun because red thread is a amulet worn in a number of cultures. So it adds another layer of meaning, and protection, to my quilt which is already loaded with protective amulets. If it is to be taken away to university with my daughter then a quilt of protection and motherly love will be just what she requires - of course we are yet to see whether it actually makes it off my bed!  I'm quite pleased with the back too.... if I do say so myself!

As part of the grand plan to get me going I went to my first ever weekend quilt retreat with our Guild and spent a whole weekend sewing, laughing and doing more sewing. It was great and definately got me moving onto my next project - my next kimono fabric quilt.

I started off with the idea of doing nine patch quilts with a off balace cross cut into these with a cream fabrics - my dear quilt friends kindly told me it looked like masking tape.


They were right - it caused more laughter, but then I came up with these... I cut very thin strips and stitched them staight over the top with three rows of my exceptionally useful red verigated thread.

Much better. At this stage the plan is that they will be alternated across the quilt with solid blocks of kimono fabric. They need the space I think otherwise it all looks a bit frenetic. Here they are just pinned on top of a few strips of kimono fabric - it was my experiment to get a feel for how it might look.

I'm very pleased with how it is all shaping up - just need to get myself up into that sewing room to keep up the good work.

Thanks for perservering with me and dropping by to see if I am still around - I'll endeavour to keep you posted.....