Thursday, 18 October 2012


I must day I'm buzzing at the moment - not always making a bee-line, but sometimes flying round in circles. However I am making progress. You may feel I'm making a bit of a meal of it, but all this planning is against my spontaneous nature so I have been taking breaks from C&G quilt planning to do other things. 
First over the last few weeks I have been sewing these mini log cabin/courthouse blocks from lots of off-cuts and scraps. The strips are about 2cm wide before sewing.  I have now got enough to sew into a band, and I am intending to make myself a satchel type bag. I am going to add some borders and then quilt it. It is giving me good practice in cutting and stitching, and it is pretty spontaneous so it has been a good break from the formal work. However if I am going to make a bag it will require some planning.

Below is a page for this month's sketchbook challenge "a cabinet of curiosities". As you can see, I could not get away from patchwork and based it on an 'attic windows' pattern, some magazine cut-outs and some drawings fill the spaces.

And here is a frame I've done for my journal.
I've been playing with different colour combos.

Meanwhile back to the quilt planning...
This picture I did in my sketchbook in March has always been talking to me, to I decided on this pattern inspired by my photograph of chimneys agains a blue sky.

Below is my first idea for a quilt.

I made cut outs of all the elements - painted a set and copied more, until I had enough to pin up and play with the composition - actual size. (My design-wall is a strip of sheeting hung over a door.)


It is interesting to see how the flash used in the first photo has altered the colours - the sun came out for the second two arrangements, hence the bright spot at the bottom - lighting was not my priority here. but colours in the last two are truer - the blue is on the turquoise side.
I am favouring the last set-up at the moment.

My next task is to gather together fabrics. I have been to 'Fashion and Fabrics" St Albans' an Aladdin's cave of quilting fabrics and bought a few 30cm lengths and a fat quarter of a selection of oranges and a couple of blues, mixed here with some of my hand-dyed fabrics.  Their blue selection hadn't got what I wanted. Below I have put some lavender blues are on the left, but it is the turquoise/cyan tones I want so I will probably have a dyeing session to give me the more of the blues I want.

Here are a couple of sample squares I made when I started planning, to see if it would work. _ I intend to print the motif into the middle of each square.

Next I shall be experimenting with the right colour for the print - I shall probably use acrylic paint for this. I have also got to think how I will quilt the whole thing - I have got some ideas, but I haven't  fully decided yet.
I'm quite excited by the whole process, but I need to take it step by step - measure at least three times before cutting, and really THINK what I am doing - I am liable to make really glaring mistakes.

Thank you for sticking with me, I value any thoughts, handy tips or ideas you may have, perhaps something I have not thought of. I hope you're having a good week.


marigold jam said...

Your bag will be lovely I can tell! Those blocks are great and the colours so vibrant. Do show us when you've finished won't you?

I think your chimney inspired quilt will be fabulous too - and that's a great idea to print the designs on the squares - I had thought you were going to applique them (some job that would be wouldn't it?) However you could do one or two here and there as applique to add extra texture if you fancied couldn't you? Or maybe not? Not knowing what the criteria are for this quilt I have no other ideas to suggest but I am sure there will be those better qualified than I who will have some suggestions for you.

helena said...

your bag piece is fabulous - such a great use of scraps

and I love your quilt design - one of my fav colour combos

Linda said...

Your artwork is wonderful Jill...I especially love your sketchbook challenge page (great wellies! ;-) )
and your design for the quilt is truly fabulous. Its going to be a beauty...

Printed Material said...

Don't think you need any help from the likes of me Jill! You seem to be really thinking this through in such a considered way and I think the chimneys are a fantastic source of inspiration. The coloured strips remind me of the colours used by Bethan Ash and I can see them in a bag. The thing I love the most is the real pleasure and enjoyment you are getting from this course. The joy in it resonates thorugh your posts!

Gina said...

What a lovely post Jill. Your crazy patchwork strip is fabulous and I love seeing the design process for your chimney pot quilt (I like the last design best too!)Can't wait to see it finished... but don't rush!

flutterbycrafter said...

Wow, love your colour choice & your pieces are coming along really well. It's going to be stunning when it's finished, you're very talented x

Carol Hornby-Clements said...

I came to your blog looking for WOYWW and was blown away by your sketches and plans.

Can you turn off the word verification? It is difficult to get it correct and leave comments.


Jill said...

I have turned off word verification as it is a pain - I'll see if I get spam on not! It may have to come back

Barb Cady said...

Hi Jill. I have been watching with great pleasure your process in thinking out your quilt and first would like to thank you for your generosity in sharing. It has inspired me to try and work through processes and want to start keeping a sketchbook. I am making an ordinary quilt at the moment, log cabin style, but your designs have blown me away! I love the chimneys and how tou are translating them to your quilt. The colours are beautiful, and each stage is exciting. I hope you manage to get your turquoise dyes you want, my favourite colours! The bag too is scrumptious, lovely use of colour. I can't wait to see the next bit! x

Eileen said...

I love the energy of the first patchwork piece, and the sketchbook page is just great - really lovely work.

I agree that the third quilt design looks best. It breaks up the design a bit and adds some additional liveliness and interest.

From everything I've seen of your work I think it is strongest when you let yourself be free and don't try to be too precise and regular. That's when your work seems to be most alive and compelling. If I felt able to give any advice it would be to say not to try for an absolutely perfect neat finish but to go for rhythm and colour and liveliness.

menopausalmusing said...

Yay for spontaneity! Loving those top three photos and their colours.
Looking forward to seeing what comes next from the photos and sketches of those wonderful chimney pots.