Archive | 12:48 pm

Smoke, Mirrors and Sleight of Hand

2 Mar

I finished the first quilt with my new machine,stitch regulator,carrriage combo. Am I happy? Nope. I can see no reason why I won’t get all the problems smoothed out and look back on the early times as a learning experience, at the moment though I am not a happy bunny. I finished one of my favourite tops and thought it was ok  until I looked closely then I found that I obviously haven’t got the hang of the setup. Happily, for the purposes of this blog you can’t see what I can see cos it is mostly on the back. I haven’t decided whether I want to unpick it all and redo it or even if that is possible at this point. However, you can pretend it is perfect and enjoy the result. I haven’t got a dog which is a shame because I gather that the dog’s basket is where all the failures go. It will probably end up gracing the floor when members of the small people class visit. Mind you it won’t get much wear under those circumstances. I don’t think that has ever happened now I come to think of it. I wonder what it would look like as a door mat.

It is a similar one to a top I showed you in July 2011. It is just different fabrics, same pattern. When you pay the price I did for the pattern(s) you make a few.

It is by Kookaburra Cottage and I kept fairly closely to the original colours as I liked them.

The Quilt.

Crocodile. Does it look to you as if he’s going to do the peanut tossing trick with a feathered substitute?

Monkey. I love the way he oozes into the other frame.

Zebra, believe it or not with perhaps a Tick Bird. I’m just an old romantic.

Someone commented that my zebra didn’t look like one so I tried again. Well what did you expect. Black and white is so passé. Blue is the new black – or is it white.

The Zebra

The Ark and the Dove of Peace. Looks like the sea is a bit choppyand I’m not sure why Noah is walking on water. He could get his socks wet.

Giraffe and Butterfly.

I did this as per the pattern but I wandered into the The Cotton Patch one day -not an easy feat when you live as far away as I do- and saw this fabric which I used in the next one. Much more authentic, I think you will agree. I have just spotted the potential for a bit of free motion on the background fabric.

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Hippo and Rhino with Parrot and Butterfly.

Lion and Friend. I’ve seen a lion close-up on a kill in the wild and I can tell you, even full of food they are not that friendly.

Elephant and Mouse. What’s to say – such a cliche.

Kangaroo and Rabbit. That relationship has me a bit bemused. Should have gone to Specsavers. (You might have to live in the UK to get that reference).

Is it my imagination or are fabrics not as interesting as they used to be. I suppose it could be that as it is now expensive companies are playing safe and not risking printing fabrics that might be too different. Unfortunately I am totally incapable of using dull colours.  Apparently this is unusual among those that live in  grey countries. (Daughter number one did her degree dissertation on the subject). I blame it on my exposure to Australian patterns whilst escaping from Papua New Guinea for short sortés and retail therapy. To be honest PNG has the potential to be sunny if only it didn’t rain so much.

Stop Press! I have had email exchanges about the stitch quality of my set up and I think that I have the answer. Basically I can sort out the looping problem but my expectations are too high. ‘C’est la vie ‘ as our Gallic cousins are wont to say. It still beats anything I could do with free motion quilting off the frame. In fact I don’t know how anyone does that. I could go back to stitch- in- the- ditch but it kills my shoulders and it’s a real pain trying to keep ‘in the ditch’ so to speak even with all the fancy gadgets I have purchased over the years. I have discovered that having my original ‘frame machine’ available off the frame with the purchase of the new one, I now have the facility to do echo quilting with a large throat machine. This helps somewhat if I could only keep the stitches straight.

The pile of OFOs has to diminish so watch me go.

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