Wednesday, 1 August 2012

The Virtual Quilt Museum

I am utterly gutted to be too ill to visit the American Museum in Bath today. Had I done so I would have been enthralled and inspired and taken photos. Instead here are some of other people's photos to inspire and enthral me.

Let us begin with a scrappy spiderweb.
Spiderweb Quilt - 2
I do tend to be drawn to the quilts with small pieces of fabric making the body of the design. I have a bit of a phobia though about things that join many points in the centre of a motif like this one does. 8 sections? How do you get the centre to lie flat when it collects all those seam allowances and joins together? Something I need to work on. Even in something like this next one - where you have only four corners coming together - it could be an issue.

Now isn't that impressive? All those designs are from one square made of two triangles - one black, one white - and joined on the diagonal. And the pattern will look different again when you join multiple blocks. Do non-maths people think about iterations? It's a basic method for solving equations although thinking about it I guess dyers must use it a lot too. Although dyeing is basically an equation I guess.

Something I've never invested in but will be looking out for at the Festival of Quilts is a jelly roll. 2.5" wide pieces of fabric that are 42" long - the width of the fabric itself. Strip piecing gives you lots of options. For example...

Source: via Alex on Pinterest

Source: via Alex on Pinterest

(Although that last one is apparently made out of t-shirts and not a jelly roll.)

Then there are quilts which use machine techniques to give the appearance of a paper pieced quilt. Hexagons for example.
Source: via Alex on Pinterest

Very clever and I would rather  like to do this on a bigger scale so you get a quilt seemingly made up of great big hexagons - perhaps 8" across? When you do a simple shape on that scale it becomes more about the fabric than the design. Like this one perhaps.
I couldn't be more pleased

Finally (because even typing is wearing me out today) there are those quilts where the piecing is creating a bigger picture. In some cases a very big picture.

I 100% admire the technique but it's not something that I would want to do. I'm not very good at light and dark which is why a jelly roll interests me as it will have selected the fabrics for you. Or perhaps something like this, although really this is appliqué.
It is definitely the quilting that makes it though. Free arm quilting is again not something I have mastered although I do like machine embroidery. You do need a long arm machine for it though unless you are making a miniature quilt. But this one is something that interests me.
Source: via Alex on Pinterest

I have a fascination with little houses. This one is done in small blocks and then assembled. I can imagine having a lot of fun with this, and with the little trees, and with embellishing with buttons. Maybe one day...

I hope you enjoyed the virtual quilt show. I have to go back to coughing and sneezing til my ribs ache now.

Monday, 30 July 2012

A is for Actual, B is for Battery, C is for Chickens

When Mater got her chickens she was told they could take quite a while to recover. They are ex-battery farm and so their first year of life was not the most pleasant.
Ex-Battery Chickens 2
Three weeks into their residence there are new feathers growing where they were previously bald but there are still surprisingly bright red and pink areas on chests and bottoms.
018Ex-Battery Chickens 3
Rather uncomfortable to see as I can't help thinking of them as 'oven ready'.
Ex-Battery Chickens 1
There has also been some difficulties as the other five tend to pick on one. They have been separated for now but it's not ideal.
Ex-Battery Chickens 4
Within the next week or two they'll have a section of the garden fenced off for their use. Until then they have this rather extraordinary hutch thing to romp in. Plus of course the chicken house which has roosting poles and a nesting box in it. And now you see the reason for the egg picture in my last post.
Garden Chicken Coop
I'd have thought they wouldn't start laying until they had settled in but they've been producing 4-5 eggs a day since they arrived. Everyone in the village has shared the eggy bounty.

As ever I am taking full advantage of my proximity to the cat, Artemis.
Artemis the Cat 2
I have never known a cat wash themselves as much as this animal. When she comes in from a few hours hunting she'll settle down to 30+ minutes of all over cleansing. It also amazes me how tight a ball she can curl herself into since she's not a small, skinny thing.
Artemis the Cat 1
So cute. She prefers to have a paw over her nose. But then don't we all.

Following some lovely weather on saturday it looks like the rest of my holiday here is going to be cloudy and rainy. Such a shame. I was able to take a few pics though when I went to a Boot Fair.
Clouds in Somerset
"Clouds Over the Caravan Park" although the view in the other direction is pretty good too.
Sea and Clouds
I do adore clouds. And that grey sea we used to have in Herne Bay when I was growing up. And then a little undergrowth for the vegetarians.
English Thistles
Later this week I will be venturing to Bath with Mater to visit the American Museum and finally see all the quilts there that I keep hearing about. Festival of Quilts is only three weeks away so this will be a good warm up. Then after that...
Red Gingham Blind
Curtains. I know this is a blind, but I'll be making curtains for four smaller windows once I feel the Olympic Shawl has made enough progress.
Ex-Battery Chickens 5
Cluck cluck.

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Singing and Dancing the rain.

Holiday in Somerset, staying with the parents. But ou est le sunshine?

Using the time to get into phase two of the shawl. Phase two being "knit the fecking thing the right way round" and as part of the Ravelympics or whatever one is supposed to call it.

I will explain the large number of eggs next time.

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