Sunday, January 31, 2010

Irene has been busy during the weekend and finished her a very handy tool. While watching TV she can put all her equipment in her sofa pockets.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Sewing kit project

Last Thursday Ursula, Irene, Therese, Cinzia and I met to make sewing kit from a Japanese book. As a Thursday morning rule we do show our work to each other. This time Irene showed her sister's present for her birthday. Her sister is very talented as Irene and makes adorable things.

Irene made this little Christmas tree.

This is Irene's present too.

Despite walking with clutches Cinzia has been busy making her first quilted items.

Two weeks ago Ursula saw Irene's book on making small items decided teach others to make a sewing kit. Ironically, the book was in Japanese but she managed to learn Japanese in two weeks! Ladies started making sewing kits armed with their Berninas and Pfaff.

Below Cinzia's sewing kit. First time she learnt how to make a paper piercing. The heart had to be paper pierced.

Irene was working very fast and inside and outside of the sewing kit almost ready. Irene's Pfaff had many fancy stitches and you can see the result.

Therese choose green fabric and was using her Bernina's fancy stitches too. But she has to go to do her Portuguese homework before starting making a heart. Her Portuguese is perfect but she thinks that there is room for improvement.

Photo and text by Javhlan

Thursday, January 21, 2010

A bis secret quilt!

On my big secret I spent two long years from start to finish. During this period I raised one baby and gave birth to another one. My pregnancy was not so easy because I had to stay in bed. My two girls are now one and three years old. These are just little excuses why the project took this long to finish.

Despite all this, I visited some countries in Europe, Japan and the USA. These are other reasons for lost time.

I tried to make 40 blocks for my husband's 40th birthday, but I could not give him his present on that day because I was already eight months pregnant. I did not want (or to be precise he did not want) to surprise him with a little girl prematurely!

Unfortunately, on his next birthday he still did not receive his previous birthday present. Because I had been too busy with our new little girl who was always sick since her birth. Another little excuse.

Finally, in the first week of December, I wrapped my husband's present and gave it to him on a rainy evening, so that he could have his big present before his Christmas presents.

Below you can see a big kimono-shaped wall hanging quilt. I am behind the quilt, standing on the chair holding it for the photo. My hands can't even reach the edges. The sleeves of the kimono are separate, like real kimonos. I ended up making 41 blocks instead of 40 because the shape which I was making did not accept even numbers. Ironically, he received it aged 41 (and two months).

He was very surprised at the quilt and the thought behind it as he hadn't had any clue what I was doing in my little sewing room or during quilt group meetings. Of course he cannot wear it!

When our first baby girl was six months old we went to France and I started collecting fabrics with Japanese patterns. At that time I did not know what I would do but I just bought them because I really liked them.

When I visited Japan in April, 2007, I bought some fabrics to add to my collection.

Later in August that year we went to Seattle and I found a quilt shop, where I bought more fabrics with Asian motifs.

Most importantly, I found Susan Briscoe's books on sashiko and Japanese quilting. These gave me ideas to make a quilt of kimono blocks, and slowly the idea then developed to assemble them in a kimono shape; something original, I think. I was a bit nervous about my idea because quilts are mainly given as presents to women and babies but not often to men, even though there are many famous men quilters in the world.

As you can see, I collected my fabrics from around the world but the sewing was done in Portugal while juggling the upbringing of two little children. This purple and yellow fabric was Angela's present while I was in bed waiting for my second little girl.

Thank you Angela for helping me to figure out how to make the patterns fit neatly in block using paper piercing. Many thanks also to Arabella, Irene and Ursula, my quilting buddies, shortening my two days work of stitching the binding into two hours.

Text Javhlan
Photos Husband and Wife

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Today, new ideas for the rest of the year!

Irene and Ursula joined me today for quilting but we did not do much stitching. Instead we talked about our quilt Bar Plans for the rest of the year.

Before that Irene tried to do some stitching for her 9 blocks, which she started recently, despite she has many on going projects. By the way, who cares on how many projects we will work same time.
Ursula brought her patchwork bag to mend handles. She was stitching with a two cm long needle! For me it was almost like "where is the needle but not the hole!"

Here is our plan for 28 January. Ursula will teach how to make this sewing kit from Irene's book. The book is all in Japanese but we can understand numbers and we quite advanced on sewing. We do think this is a very good project to give away or just keep yourself organised. After this I will teach in February quiltagami and stylish box making.

By Javhlan

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The first meeting of 2010!

Only three of us were available to start our quilt group's meeting last Thursday. We did not go to the Quilt Bar instead we stayed in my living room. Some of us still on holiday or busy with their visitors.

Therese brought her giant Christmas tree quilt and with Irene's help she sandwiched. Now big tree is ready to be quilted.

Now it was time for Therese to help Irene. Both ladies started stitching Irene's flower appliques.

These are Irene's little toys. As you can see Dutch symbol all over the place. If you need some inspiration to make your pin cushion interesting here we go.

Photos by Irene and Javhlan
Text by Javhlan

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Winter greetings from Birte

Birte finished again a new project. Snow men!! This fits perfectly into the German landscape at the moment. I can imagine that there are snow men all over the places with all the snow that is falling this winter.
She sewed the blogs on paper. This was quick, she said. But she did not really enjoy taking off the paper again in the end................. !!!! !

posted by Ursula
photo by Birte

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

New projects to go for?

Finally is the time that I show to you all the lovely quilts from the High Tea Show and Tell, that Iren's sister sent to me. The projects are breathtaking beautiful and it is inviting to also make one of the quilts. There is a huge variety and we can all find our favourites.
Just see and enjoy!

posted by Ursula
photos by Marry Top-van Es


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