Friday, 14 August 2015

Oma's Blues: Part 8 is Launched

I normally launch of the 15th of each month, but as it's Friday and I have housework to do before the weekend, I've decided to post early! Here I am working on a block before it's actually released- I do think that's a first for me! In Part 8 we are making 30x BB2 blocks. 
Having completed my BB1 blocks, I had another tough afternoon opting for the fabrics. I finally settled on this beautiful Leesa Chandler fabric because I felt it blended with almost every other blue in the quilt.
 First I stitch the base blocks
Once all 30x bases of the blocks are done, they look like this. And just like in BB1, I press the seams towards the dark area of the block, I don't want any show through.
 These are the applique pieces I prepared earlier. I'll be appliqueing these on top. This is just the way I have chosen to create these blocks. I prefer to applique the opposing shapes on top of the block. You could of course piece the whole thing. This method just works best for me but is in no way the only way to create BB2. Do what works for you. 
 This is what my block will look like when the applique is in position
I've decided that I'm going to stitch the base block (without the applique) into position first and then applique the shapes down afterwards, when the created border is in place.
I'll double count my pieces to make sure I don't make too many or few and then I'll put them back into my prep box until I'm ready to stitch them down later. For my applique pieces, I have once again used Polyfuse, it's a wash way fusible and I'm using it throughout this quilt as I find that it speeds up my working method. I have no papers to remove, I just used the pattern, and carry on.

I'm looking forward to see this quilt really start taking shape. I'm working out of turn so I'm not as far along as most of you who have been creating Oma step by step each month. Today I have some extra prepping to do (if I get some spare time later on in the evening).

You've seen how I've opted to create BB2 this month. Of course, you could opt for a different colourway, depending on what effect you want this block to create in your border.This is the image from the pattern. Make 30x and set aside.

Oma's Blues is my current FREE BOM. 
You can still join this free BOM right now - all parts are available over in my Group.

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

WOW: More Oma Prepping

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays
It looks like August is going to be Oma's month! I'm working non stop to get this quilt top done. I love making progress as fast as this because I have quilts waiting in the wings. My family keep asking me why I'm complaining about being 'hard at work' when 'all I'm really doing is hobbying' - but they don't understand. Quilting at this pace IS a job, and a full time one at that!

Here's my Oma's Blues Prep Box. I have an individual prep box for every quilt I'm working on. It means I always have something to be getting on with, especially when I get tired of seeing the same quilt over and over.
What's Your WOW?

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Oma's Blues: Making the BB1 Blocks

This is how I'm making the BB1 block. I've opted to piece, however you could also applique this block if you wanted to. For myself, I think piecing is faster and I did get through my 30x blocks in a day, which worked for me.

First up, is the always difficult choice of selecting fabrics. It should be easier when you have a two colour quilt like Oma, but believe me - I still ummmed and ahhhed for many hours before deciding on my final choice. These blocks make up a border which, in my mind, looks like an abstract vision of Delft stacked plates and dishware.
After fabric selection comes organised, scheduled preparation. I cannot stress enough how important it is to break up your task into segments of work. If I had attempted to make 30x blocks from scratch all in one day, it would have been too much to get through. I find it much easier to constantly 'prep' work and tuck it into envelopes to return to later. This is a great activity to do when I only have an hour or so free and it means that at some later time my work will come together 'quickly'. Well, it will look quick, but really there will be many little hours of preparation that have all come together.
pay careful attention to the curve as you stitch, it needs to be accurately and evenly stitched
I'm using Polyfuse which is a wash away fusible because it makes my work process faster and this means I don't have to remove the paper. Another advantage is that the fusible adds some stability to the fabric and this actually makes neat stitching easier than sewing without it.
Before sewing the second half, I'm pressing the seams away from any white area of fabric (because it will show through the white!). I do this throughout my work, if I left it all until the end I would probably never get around to doing it. When the blocks are completed, I will iron these folds into position, however this step now makes that process much faster when I am at the ironing board. Spotting seams of fabric show through which or light patches is a real annoyance of mine. As this quilt contains a light white background and many dark blues, I'm especially wary of keeping my blocks 'neat'. 
Before moving on, check seam lines. They must be neat and accurate. When they're not, I unpick and then re-sew them. Yes, this even happens to me. Don't hesitate to correct your work at the block stage, there's nothing worse that spotting these careless mistakes when the whole quilt top is completed.
Only when I am completely satisfied and my seams are flattened correctly, do I start with finishing the block
When the block is complete, I stack it to maintain the turned seams ready for ironing and final trimming later. I will trim my blocks down to size altogether at the end before sewing the border together.

Oma's Blues is my current FREE BOM. 
You can still join this free BOM right now - all parts are available over in my Group.

Monday, 10 August 2015

Charming Oma 4 of 4

In the pattern, these charms are Part 6
what a lovely pair of pears

I actually matched my cup, cream jug and kettle in the same fabric so they would look like a tea service set

Oma's Blues is my current FREE BOM. 
You can still join this free BOM right now - all parts are available over in my Group.

Sunday, 9 August 2015

Charming Oma 3 of 4

It feels so good to have these charms almost completed. 
In the pattern, these are the charms in Part 5.

Oma's Blues is my current FREE BOM. 
You can still join this free BOM right now - all parts are available over in my Group.

Saturday, 8 August 2015

Charming Oma 2 of 4

In the pattern, these are the charms of Part 4
I never miss my cat more than when I'm quilting, she died a few years ago and I really miss her company in my sewing studio, I definitely think a cat completes a home so this block has a special place in my heart. 

I thought the curves of the head would be tricky, but they really weren't which was a nice surprise! I definitely recommend using a fusible wash away as your pattern piece, it quickened my applique process and is most of the reason why I'm getting through so much so quickly - all those little time savings really add up!
This is another block that needs some threaded embellishment 

This is one of those blocks that is 'lost' at the moment - it needs some outlining and embellishing to help it stand out.
 I'm really enjoying making all the charm blocks and am really taking time to consider all the details. Aren't these teapots just so charming? I think they're perfect for my charm plate - they're so homey and given that Oma's Blues is all about dishware, it's just a lovely touch.

Oma's Blues is my current FREE BOM. 
You can still join this free BOM right now - all parts are available over in my Group.

Friday, 7 August 2015

Charming Oma 1 of 4

I've been loving watching members make these up and couldn't wait any longer, here are my charms. First off I made my bound heart, I just thought it was a sweet romantic block to start on. Originally I supposed that I would create the 'knot' with crochet cotton, but decided on applique as the threads were completely lost on the design.
I love tulips, this block is just so neat and cute
 My little house definitely needs some embellishing stitches, I'm thinking about them already
 I was really torn over what fabric to use for the apple: this blue blossom fabric shows up a few times in Oma's Blues. I purchased it years ago because I loved it instantly - but never found the right quilt to use it in. Then, a few months ago I sold the bolt I had of it to one of the women I'm teaching in our beginners sewing club and since I parted with it, I've fallen in love with it all over again! I only had just enough to use it a little in Oma but I'm glad I managed to use it somewhere.
Sometimes you just have to 'let your favourite fabrics go'. The women who purchased this fabric from me went on to make gorgeous earrings with it and she tells me this fabric is a best seller at her market stalls, so I'm glad to report that the fabric I reluctantly 'let loose' on the world is going to be enjoyed by literally hundreds of women in it's own small way :)
Cute, aren't they?

Due to my schedule, I'm not making Oma's Blues at the same time as everyone else - I'm making it out of turn according to the free BOM release schedule. All these blogs have already been released and I'm only making them now.

Oma's Blues is my current FREE BOM. 
You can still join this free BOM right now - all parts are available over in my Group.