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The old meets new…

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The old meets the new, has been the theme for this week !!

My #QuiltBlockBootCamp has been given the challenge of creating this traditional Cathedral Block.

I have used 5″ squares, as in the Missouri Quilt Company Tutorial which I think made the block a little easier.
sewnbyleanne_cathedralblock_oldmeetsnewI do love the effect the solid kona cotton colours make together as the background.  I used my 5″ charm squares of gilded Japanese fabric for the centres – and the colours are just popping out at you !  This Cathedral block has been on my to do list for a while and I’m so glad Alison gave it to us, as our fortnightly challenge – as now I can say I’ve completed it.  I’m not exactly sure what this WIP will become yet – a cushion cover perhaps or even a centre piece – although it is very bright !!

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This is how the blocks looks like together, before you start to topstitch !!  It is a fun block, but can’r say that it will be my favourite.

The following block is where the old meets new – octagonal blocks have been around for many years.  Traditionally they are foundation paper pieced, and were great way to use your scraps.  With todays quilt design programs, octagonal blocks are beaming more and more complex.  This month I have signed up for a work octagonal block swap – and the first block we create our own to show others our desired colour scheme.  So I spent the weekend thinking of what I would use my finished Quilt for – and decided I wanted it to be for my daughter !!  Her favourite colours are pink and red !!  Yay !!  Then I thought of the Ella Blue Basics range – yummy <3

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Here is the Octagonal block I have created to show my colour scheme.  I have nominated the grey as my backing fabric !  This Quilt could be red or pink or a combination – it will be fun to open the box at the end of the 12 months to see everyone’s contribution !

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The pattern cannot be shared as my work colleague designed it – but is it not BEAUTIFUL <3 <3  It is a stunning block of Ella Basics surrounded by some Tilda love (which we of course all need!).

This will be a long waited WIP !!

Have great week and on the weekend I will show you the beautiful fabrics I have stashed for my Farmers Wife Sampler Quilt – oh exciting – the 28th is getting closer !!

Leanne  xx

 

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Trying to get organised.

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Organisation……

This week has demanded my attention to be ORGANISED.  When I am Organised, if the kids get sick or something doesn’t go to plan – I am able cope – but this week showed me, when I am juggling many things by the skin of my pants and then one of the kids are sick, then another and why don’t the other two join the boat too – everything heads down hill.  To the point I had to write a very embarrassing email to a lady – in which I had lost the names of her grandchildren she wanted appliqués to their Art Smocks :-(.  Thankfully this the last time it will happen as I have been organising my paperwork meticulously this weekend – partly to find the piece of paper I wrote my customer details on and secondly – so this NEVER happens again.  Ahhh !  It has been one of THOSE weeks.

Apart from this, in between I have met the deadlines of a couple of projects. Thankfully and just !!

Firstly,

Kylie from Little Moo Designs has created yet another stunning bag !!

sewnbyleanne_baybohobag_littlemoodesignsSince I made this bag I have LOVED it.  It fits everything, is COMFY, totally PRACTICAL  and I love the fact that it sits across the body.  This leaves my hands free to run after and grab my four year old when he is trying to escape !!  Thank you Kylie for another Great Bag !!  I saw this Aztec Denim Print in Spotlight as Kylie let me know the style of her new pattern – and instantly thought they would make a great match.  I decided on an Orange zip as I LOVE it as that special detail (plus my favourite colour is orange).

I have alos commenced my Block designs using Blossom Heart Quilts –  DIY Block Design Book.  It has been great.  I now have about 6 pages of Block designs I will share with you.  I am currently creating the tutorials and will announce the tutorial series next month !!  This will be my first – so it is rather exciting……. here is a sneak peek !

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While I have been patiently awaiting the start of the Farmer’s Wife Quilt-a-long – I have also completed my Christmas project for the year – Jolly Mr Claus.

sewnbyleanne_jollymrclaus_organised_christmasJolly Mr Claus is a pattern from Melly and Me – and He is Adorable.  He met our Elf on the shelf last night 😉  And I am hoping he will keep the Elf in line this year !!  I will be taking PRE-ORDERS for Mr Claus from the 13th September – so watch this space !!

Ms Midge has also announced the Cotton and Steel #aussiecharmalong this week, so I have finally finished the Quilt top.  Here is a sneak peak !!  I won’t show you the entire Mini Quilt 34″x36″ until later in the month!

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As you can imagine with all of this – life has been busy – I am still trying to keep up with the Blog-tember too!  Although I am a few days behind  🙁

Have a great week and Enjoy life !

Leanne

 

 

 

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Spring is here !!

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Spring is one of those seasons that just make you smile !!  And today it was just beautiful to see the Sun come through the clouds and feel its warmth.  As we drive around the suburbs now, the flowers are blooming and colours are returning.  it has been a COLD and chilly Winter here in Melbourne this year so it is nice to be finally defrosting !
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To celebrate the start of Spring, I am joining the Blog-tember Challenge by the Brave Love Blog.  I have made this decision for two reasons:

  1. To stop myself making those gorgeous Farmers Wife 1930s Blocks for the Quilt Along, I have taken the pledge not to start before the 28th September………..
  2. To get myself into a routine of blogging more regularly – wish me luck !!

The prompt for September 1st (aka TODAY) is – Introduce yourself however you like !

So on this beautiful first day of Spring here, I’m taking the plunge.  I can’t guarantee I’ll post each day – but I will give it a go, and try and give each post a “Little Quilting Tweeking”.

sewnbyleanne_behindthescenes_leannephotoThis is me – aka – Leanne behind Sewn by Leanne.

I love to:    create, spend time with our family and friends,  listen and sing to favourite music (to the embarrassment of our children) and am completely passionate about Quilting.  I have recently rekindled my love for Paper Piecing !!

I enjoy:  being happy and living life to the maximum.  I am conservative by nature, so there is nothing rebellious or adventurous in my endeavours, but I do love to give most things a go – on one condition there is NO danger involved !

I am obsessed by:  Quilting, Sewing and most things crafty; being punctual; being kind to everyone – my Mum had a saying – “if someone hurts you – return them with overwhelming kindness, and the hurt will go ” .  This has generally stood me in good stead so far…..

I am passionate about:  our 4 gorgeous children – guiding them and steering them through life with a strong sense of self, faith and love for humanity.  I wish them to be independent, and happy individuals that love life, and a drive to be the best that they can be !!  (I’m a very proud Mum, aren’t I??)

 

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When thinking of a Collage to put together my passions- this is the result – what is important to us.

  • our 4 children
  • our marriage (no photos of Mr B – he doesn’t enjoy social media)
  • our extended family and friends
  • Sewn by Leanne

Sewn by Leanne was created from my love of craft.  Having four children, life gets busy and Creating allows me to have an outlet, and yet still be the full-time Mum I enjoy being for them !!

If one asks me what my style is –  I always find it hard to answer !!  It depends on the project I have at hand – but with a broad generalisation – I would say – traditional with a modern twist.  Sounds like I’m naming a cocktail  😉 .

I often use traditional quilting blocks and give them a modern twist with vibrant modern fabrics !!

The road Sewn by Leanne has travelled so far, has been so exciting and stimulating – I tend to become completely absorbed by it !!  Blogging is a relatively new process, but one I’m SLOWLY getting the hang of…..  One of my sons said the other day “Mum you should be good at blogging – you just write what you talk about – and YOU talk ALOT”  Bless Him !!!

I hope you enjoy finding out more about Sewn by Leanne on this Blog-tember Challenge this Spring !!  Join me in my challenge……… and let me know if there are aspects to Sewn by Leanne that you would love to know about!

Until the 2nd !!

Leanne 🙂 xx

 

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An Organised Quilt-a-long for now !

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Organisation – is something I like to be, and something I loved prior to having children.  A Type A personality, I LOVED colour co-ordinated stationary and could spend HOURS colour coding, filing and being prepared.  Some may have called this “procrastination”, instead of doing the study I needed to do.  But I had convinced myself I couldn’t work without things being “pretty” (aka organised 😉 ).

Then children came and I learnt that the first lesson they teach you is – “you are no longer in control, they are”.  I tried after one, then two, maybe a little after number three and certainly not after number four – to maintain my love of colour co-ordinated stationary and the feeling of being organised !  However, kids craft took over !!  Therfore, it has been a while since I bought stationary for myself – the children’s school booklists have been as close as I have come….

Seeing the many blogs and posts of the Farmers Wife 1930s Sampler Quilt-a-long of “Quilters Organisation 101” – inspired me to be organised with this Quilt-a-long.  I went to a local Stationary store – Officeworks – “browsed” as much as one can with a very excited 4 year old in tow……  I founds this gorgeous Orange three ring folder – matching the Sewn by Leanne Logo.  Then I ventured to the binding/ printing service to see how much Spiral binding the book would be – $5 – I was sold !!

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Then I encountered printing dilemmas !!  I printed 1-50 – but I only set it to print “Actual Size” on the first block.  OH NO!!  So much paper wasted !!  I had to go into each individual file to adjust the printing size :-(.  After block 5, I decided I would take the disc to Officeworks and ask them to do this time investment !!  They groaned but agreed, and I left clear instructions for each file to be printed at ACTUAL size.  I arrived back the next morning – and alas – there was the pile of 100 blocks beautifully printed BUT ALL at least 1/8th of an inch smaller AHHHHHHHHH!   Thankfully the lady serving behind the counter was also a quilter and understood my dilemma.  So after all that, I asked for a refund and I went home and printed the remaining 95 out individually on my home printer.

Now I have a beautifully organised folder of all 99 blocks, including the rotary cutting instructions.  I printed out a colour copy of the above photo for the front pocket ! I am already to start creating starting the 28th September – it is marked in my diary Gnome Angel !!  How exciting. 

Meanwhile to stop myself starting to create this beautiful Quilt – I’m practising on other paper-piecing challenges……  Using 627 Handworks (aka Julie Hirt) 2″ hexie tiles I have started creating a fun Hexie-Quilt from my Cotton and Steel charms……  together with Charcoal Shot cotton !!

Here is a sneak peek for my next blog post later in the week….

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They are small and fiddly – yet stunning !!

See you later in the week.

Leanne 🙂 xx

 

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Paper piecing – a new love !!

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Paper Piecing has definitely become a new love of mine.  I have just completed this Giraffe.  This Pattern is made by Tartan Kiwi, and it is a big project – but look at the results !!

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Tartan Kiwi’s Pattern has a completely black background – and I just love how you can change the fabric – and therefore change the personality of the Quilt.  This Quilt is now hanging from my bedroom door, until I decide how to Quilt it.  I’m thinking something to distinguish the character of the sky and the grass !  Tartan Kiwi has also made a Zebra – Paper piecing pattern which I think is next on my to do list !! The size of this Mini Quilt is 25×34″ so it is not small !!

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This is an example of my planning stage.  I have my colouring pencils (which I borrow from my daughter) and the perfect giraffe fabric I found at work !

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Gradually the features and personality of the giraffe come together.  I have my scraps colour coded so I often have by blue box just sitting there and dig deep to find the right size piece.  So the piecing is very much trial and error.  When you start paper piecing it is quite difficult sometimes to determine how much fabric you need, so it is a bit of trial and error.  I read in a pattern recently that you should cut your pieces an inch larger than the shape on your paper – but that is quite large and you will waste a lot of fabric this way.  I’m not sure what the answer is, but I will give you a guide as I learn also…….  Paper pieced Patterns don’t often include the amount of fabric needed, which I find interesting.

Two other paper pieced projects I have completed lately are the beach scene which I have created for my #beachboundswap partner and another is the owl by Elizabeth Hartman.  The owl pattern is not an original paper pieced pattern.  I have reduced it’s size substantially (~60%) so that it fits on the side of an one hour (and the rest….) basket.

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Once the Owl was significantly smaller there were a lot of very small pieces to work with, and I find paper piecing allows me to manage the pieces and even seams better!

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This Australian Beach Scene I have created for a swap, and this Mini Quilt will be sent overseas.  Hence the little bits of Australia in it – the golden beach, seagulls, starfish in rock pools, yellow/ red to represent our lifeguards and a touch of Terra Australis – representing the Sydney Harbour Bridge.  My mission this weekend is to Quilt this Mini so it is ready to send in September.  To create this scene I have used the “Spring Fling Pattern” by JMZBlond on Craftsy, and the Turtle is by SewHooked  .

Definitely give paper piecing a go -you can find patterns for any animal, Frozen characters that would make great pillows – it is really like sewing a picture !!  I love it !!

Have a great weekend !!

Leanne 🙂

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Craft, Craft, Craft galore in August…..

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Craft has certainly taken pride of place in our home this month !!  I have been dabbling in non-quilting activities – such as creating my “One hour  and longer ……” Basket for Lil’ Pip Designs, pattern testing for Little Moo Designs, with yet another TWO patterns (Kylie is amazing with her designs), creating my children’s birthday cakes and making aprons as party favours for my daughter’ cupcake decorating party. The house has been filled with Glitter, Glue and Sugar.

But before I show you just how this month has got so busy – I must show you how perfectly the “One hour and longer…..”  Basket looks in my sewing space !!  It is just awesome <3 <3

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I adore Quiet Play’s Paper Piecing Patterns.  This one has been on my to do list for a while.  It fits perfectly on top of my thread drawers !!  yep they are all filled with Aurifil threads !!  Thank you so much for the basket Jane – it is divine !!  Currently it holds my WIP Cotton and Steel Hexagons for the up and coming Charm Along.  More on this later though………..

Back to the craft……..

Here’s a look at the Frozen Ice Castle Attempt I made, with coloured toffee !!  I have stacked up a mountain of cupcakes and surrounded it with toffee shards !!  Not a bad attempt for my first attempt at making toffee – at least I didn’t ruin any saucepans !!

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The Party Favour Aprons for the girls to wear, also became the craft activity too.  I have used a lightweight canvas on the front, and the back I used Michael Miller Fabrics new Colouring-in Range Panels.  Each panel is 60cms.  The width was perfect for each apron.  At a local craft store I found Fabric Pastels in a little box – so each girl had one to take home and finish the colouring in also !!

 

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This Bombshell Bag is just one of the patterns I have made for Kylie from Little Moo Designs in the past couple of months.  I really enjoy pattern teasing for her.  The patterns are great – easy to read and follow and the best part is – the result is useful and practical !!

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This bag is great as a little girls toiletry bag, a make up bag or simply for there bits and pieces.  I quite like this pink laminated cotton print with the black cats and their green bow ties !  I found it in  Gail B’s Patchwork,  I work casually for.

As well as all of this, I have been working behind-the-scenes on my computer, on something very exciting !!  Which I will be able to reveal early next year.  Sometimes it is so hard to keep a secret…… shhhhhhh!  I find computer work quite frustrating most of the time.  I get an idea in my head of how I want something to look, but then it takes ages to figure out how to create it on the computer.  I guess it is a skill within itself though……….

Apart from all of this, Quilting remains my favourite craft and I have a couple of WIP which I will show you later in the week……….

Enjoy…..

Leanne xx

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Beaches in Australia ……..

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The Beaches in Australia are renowned all over the world.  So when a Mini Quilt Beach Swap came up on Instagram, I took the challenge and started thinking of what the Beach means to a born an bred Aussie like me.

Most tourists would think of surfing, sun, yellow soft sand, sun baking, maybe our surf life savers (nippers too!) and resting !!  Well growing up in country Victoria and then Melbourne, to be honest I have visited the beach mostly in Winter.  I love walking along the beach or the numerous piers, all rugged up in the winter woolies, enjoying the sound of the waves, watching the kids collect shells and memories along the way.  I find the beach far more relaxing in Winter…  why??  because I don’t need to worry about the numerous applications of sunscreen so we don’t get burnt and watching four active young kids in the surf (much prefer the bay beaches with no surf).  The smell of the salt water, setting up the picnic rug and having hot chips from the local fish and chips shop watching the kids make sandcastles and tunnels are all family memories I will treasure.   My darling husband proposed in the middle of winter while walking along one of the amazing Great Ocean Road beaches – this always adds to my love of the beach in Winter xx

Don’t get me wrong – the beach in Summer is still an adventure, and the kids and I  love it even on a very hot summers day – but I guess now as parents we see it differently – but they LOVE it, even with me turning them into hat and “rashie” covered, water bloated, sunscreen smothered kids !!

The first paper pieced item I have made is one of a Seagull.

sewnbyleanne_beach_seagull Seagulls are everywhere on Australian beaches – especially where there is food !!  I remember one of my first trips to the beach with friends and throwing a chip at them, as they just hovered beside us !!  My friends quickly explained that this action was not done, as they then scavenge for more and they did.  One Sea gull was even brazen enough to pick one up from the paper itself.  Some will call Sea Gulls pests, but it looks amazing when you are lying on the beach looking up and there is a large flock flying overhead !!

The second piece is a Sea turtle.

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Sea Turtles are amazing creatures.  This comes from my time living in Northern Queensland and seeing these amazing creatures on the beach!  This was a joy to paper piece from a tutorial by Sew Hooked on Craftsy.  The block is only 5.5″  square – so a great way to use those “little” scraps of this Cotton and Steel Basic.

The third block is a Starfish.sewnbyleanne_starfish_beach

Starfish remind me of the endless walks on the beach and over rock pools searching for Sea life.  Finding these amazing Starfish within the rock pools and seeing their colours glistening in the sunlight !

The beach is such an amazing environment that is viewed by so many of us in different ways….  I’d love to hear from you and see what you think makes Australian beaches unique !

I’m not quite sure how these blocks are going to come together yet, but it is a work in progress and I’ll be sure to let you know !

Have a great week

Leanne x

 

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Owls and Paper piecing

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Paper piecing is a new skill I wanted to work on this year……..  and although it is not my favourite way to quilt, it certainly allows you to work with those very little pieces of fabric easily.  Or should I say easier than without the paper backing, rather than easy !!

My swap partner in the #quiltblockbootcamp One hour Basket swap – is a lover of Owls.  So over the weekend I sat on pinterest – which isn’t that rare 😉 – and made a secret board of Owls…..  Quilted, Appliqued and FMQ.   WOW !  Owls are popular little animals….  So this morning I started practising on some techniques, colours and arrangements…….  have to be careful what I say and show, as I’m sure she will read this post !  Maybe just read between the lines a little.

Anyway while I was searching and the minutes on Pinterest turned into hours (as usual!) ,  I found a technique of turning regular patterns into paper piecing when you want smaller blocks !!  I have to say I like!!

One of my favourite Quilt Pattern Designers – Elizabeth Hartman – has an Owl Pattern I purchased a while ago – and has been on my LONG to do list.  However the Owl block is 16″x28″ – this is a BIG block……

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Using my photocopier tis morning I reduced the pattern by 60%, and decided to paper piece it – as you can imagine how small 2 1/2″ blocks become when reduced by 60%.  I tried the Owl’s eye first to see if I was going to pull this off – and guess what – it looks like an Owl’s eye !! Yay !!  Im not sure whether the navy Cotton and Steel Tanagrams works for her eyebrows – looks a bit fierce, but I was just sooooo excited that it looked like an eye !!

So I decided to continue !!  What do you think ??

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There are a few things I would do differently next time round !!  Here are my tips !

1.  Have all your pieces/ chosen first before you start, as the little pieces I was using started to get lost amongst the pile of scraps and fabric piling up !

2.  Cut your seams as you go, as the seams can get bulky when working with little pieces – you can see the stitches pulling a little bit at the nose.  it is because I wasn’t careful enough at snipping my seams with each fabric addition.  So there were a lot of layers to sew through when joining the nose 🙁

3.  Make sure you have a small stitch length so the paper rips easily, without destroying your work! I used the 1.8 setting on my Janome.  (I only remembered this half way through creating my Owl).

4.  Have fun !!

My Allie isn’t perfect but I think she looks rather good – frowning – but the cotton and steel aqua and gray border, almost gives the impression She is looking through the window !

My advice – just give it a go – it works sometimes !! <3

Enjoy your week!

Leanne

 

 

 

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Feather Treasures – A Mini Quilt

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Feather Treasures

My First Mini Quilt – Feather Treasures – this week was a delight to make.  This “Feather Bed Quilt Block” by Anna Marie Horner appealed from the first moment I saw it a couple of weeks ago.

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As I have been been at home most of the week with laryngitis and 4 small children on school holidays, the fabric delivery of these Dashwood Studio Fabrics from Wild Cotton Fabrics was a BIG highlight !!  The Combination of fabrics and the feather bed Quilt Block Pattern is simply stunning.

I have used Dashwood Studios Cuckoos calling as the backing – and just love those gorgeous Cuckoo Clocks and little birds !! (Please excuse the few threads I have just noticed in this photo !)

sewnbyleanne_feathertreasures_miniquiltbackingThere are a few hints I can give you now that I have made Feather treasures, to make your creations a little easier and without too much fabric wastage.

The link to the Quilt Block Tutorial is : www.annamariehorner.com/feather.bed.quilt.pdf

Tips:

1.  Strip piecing:  cut your PDF pieces out first.  Using WOFs  you need to have a length of 18″ for the pattern pieces to fit on the angle!  You can cut 3 Complete Feathers out of one WOF Strip piece.

In doing this there is quite a bit of fabric wastage, which is another reason why I have cut the four triangles of fabric left on the bias and created 2.5″ bias binding from them.

2.  Paper piecing:  This is the method I would choose next time I create this Quilt.  I think it would certainly decrease the amount of fabric wastage.  I think it would be a great beginners project to paper piecing!

3. Stem of the leaf:  Great for your little long scraps.  It is simply a 1″ strip. So look through your small scraps pile before cutting.

4. Background:  This Mini Quilt took 1/2 yard of grey Kona Cotton Solid.  At first Glance it doesn’t look like a lot of background, and I was surprised that it took most of the half yard.

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Feather Treasures Mini Quilt Details:

Size: 20×30″

Front:  Feather Bed Quilt Block Pattern x3, Dashwood Studios Cuckoo calling range of fabrics, Cotton & Steel Tangrams, Kona Cotton Grey Solid.

Back: Dashwood Studio Cuckoo calling in Navy

Batting: 100% Cosy Cotton

Quilting:  FMQ Designed by Sewn by Leanne, Gutermann Sulky Thread Navy 1044 and Silver 1011

Binding: Dashwood Studio Cuckoos Calling Range from Strip piecing.

 

My Thanks to Christine Healy for sharing this Block in Quilt Block Boot Camp, which is where is was this gorgeous Quilt Block first !!

Have a go, this Quilt block would be gorgeous as a Cushion Cover, Table runner, Wall Feature, Lap Quilt or Bed Quilt of any size !

 

Happy Quilting

Leanne 🙂

 

 

 

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Quilt Blocks Galore

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So this year instead of fabric swapping I have decided to participate in Quilt Block Swaps.  Firstly as it seems like a lot of fun seeing how others choose their blocks and then their fabrics and also to extend my skills as a Quilter.

So this year I’m participating in

  1. Quilt Block Boot Camp run over at www.sewdelicious.com.au (Ros has the most gorgeous blog – check it out!!)
  2. Quilt Club Australia Bee  – this is run on Facebook.
  3. The Bee Hive Swap run over at www.blossomheartquilts.com and www.gnomeangel.com

The Quilt Block Boot Camp

There will be a new block to create each week.  This week it was the gorgeous Raspberry Kiss Quilt Block.  The Wooden Spoon Quilting has a great tutorial to follow. Here is my version.  I love the block as it is simple yet with fabric variations it can look completely different !!

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Quilt Club Australia Bee

Here a group of 12 enthusiastic quilters get to choose their own block and fabric colours for a month and everyone else has the challenge to create it !!  I can’t wait for August until it is my turn.  My plan was to have this created this weekend, but this block has shown me that there is a HOLE in my stash of fabric – Oh No !!  I am short of chocolate brown fabrics :-(.  This is the example of our Queen for the month of February has provided – next Sunday I shall show you what I have made her !

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This photo was taken by my February Queen Bee.  I can’t wait to make it for her once I find a gorgeous chocolate brown fabric !!

The Bee Hive Swap

I am so excited about this swap!!  2 gorgeous Quilt blocks each month to practice, and the opportunity to network with gorgeous quilters.  Ever since I started quilting I have followed Blossom Heart Quilts blog and the Gnome Angel blog.  They both have an amazing eye for fabric combinations, and their sewing skills I truly admire and enjoy reading their blogs each week.

This month:  the two Quilt Blocks included “Star Plus” by Quiet Play (yet another gorgeous blog!) and “Tic Tac Toe” by Blossom Heart Quilts.

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Tic Tac Toe
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Star Plus

As you can see all of these blocks are very different and are absolutely stunning.  I love Cotton and Steel fabrics – so you will see a lot of these in my Blocks that I show you this year.  These are my interpretations of the blocks, and I love that you can have the same person create the same block, but by changing the fabrics they will look completely different !!  This is what I love about Quilting.

Feel free to follow along !!

Leanne 🙂

 

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