Sh** Just Got Real

When trying to think of what to make for my super cool Swedish friends’ wedding last Autumn, I was stuck. I didn’t have a lot of money and my sewing machine was still half way across the Atlantic so I decided a framed cross stitch would work. However, the lack of appropriate ‘super cool’ cross stitch patterns was ridiculous! I know, ‘super cool’ and ‘cross-stitch’ don’t seem to go together but I don’t see why not?! I scoured the internet for hours trying to find something that would remotely suit them and I couldn’t find anything. Nothing. Not a thing.

So I decided to take matters into my own hands and design my own!

I started by designing what I wanted in photoshop (one of these days I will have to get illustrator but photo shop is all I have for now!) and then I painstakingly drew the whole pattern out in pencil onto graph paper…. it took forever!

Cross-stitch designing, the old fashioned way!

Cross-stitch designing, the old fashioned way!


Cross-stitch designing, the old fashioned way!

Cross-stitch designing, the old fashioned way!

Once the giant version was complete, I reduced it down – by hand, yes, I know there were probably a million more economical ways to do this but sometimes I’m stubborn!

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I decided that just type on a plain background needed some colour so mixed up some water colour paint with some fabric medium, painted my evenweave and then got stitching!

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The gift was late…. by 6 months! Oops! But was gratefully received by the newlyweds and gave me the idea for Stitchsperation!

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Thangles Quilt

Whilst taking the ‘Perfect your piecing’ class at the Chicago quilt festival, I was introduced to ‘Thangles‘. I’ve never used them before, although after using them at the show, I remembered someone once gifted me some and I had put them away in a box as I had no idea what they were! I am now a total convert! I managed to make this quilt in two evenings start to finish. It will end up in the shop when I get round to listing it!

Thangles

Thangles Quilt

Thangles Quilt

Have you ever used Thangles? Do you have any other tips for piecing that you want to share?

Quilt: Flying Geese Baby Quilt
Size: 28.25″ x 32.5″ (71.75cm x 82.55cm)
Pieced and Quilted by: Me
Fabric: Kona cottons, backed with black and white cotton and finished with white stripy binding
Lives: Looking for a new home!

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Chicago: 2

The second part of our trip to Chicago was at the International Quilt Festival. It was my first big quilt show and while it wasn’t Quilt Con or one of the more modern shows, it didn’t disappoint!

Mum and I took three classes and spent the rest of the three days checking out the quilts (and introducing our credit cards to the stores!).

Here are some of my favourites from the show.

Here we go!

Here we go!

"Paint Drips" by Angela Pingel, quilted by Krista Withers

“Paint Drips” by Angela Pingel, quilted by Krista Withers

Detail from "Paint Drips" by Angela Pingel, quilted by Krista Withers

Detail from “Paint Drips” by Angela Pingel, quilted by Krista Withers

"Cherry on Top" by Catherine Redford

“Cherry on Top” by Catherine Redford

Detail of "Cherry on Top" by Catherine Redford. I loved this extra little detail in the corner.

Detail of “Cherry on Top” by Catherine Redford. I loved this extra little detail in the corner.

"Magnetic Attraction (Tuning Fork #25)" by Heather Pregger

“Magnetic Attraction (Tuning Fork #25)” by Heather Pregger

"Paint the town red" by  Diane Doran

“Paint the town red” by Diane Doran

I'm obsessed with vintage working toy sewing machines! I could have walked away with all of these!

I’m obsessed with vintage working toy sewing machines! I could have walked away with all of these!

"Raised on Bluebonnets" by  Suzan Engler I took this one for my niece who works with cows.

“Raised on Bluebonnets” by Suzan Engler
I took this one for my niece who works with cows.

My finished "Exotica" quilt block from my class with Laura Murray

My finished “Exotica” quilt block from my class with Laura Murray

WIP "Exotica" quilt block from my class with Laura Murray

WIP “Exotica” quilt block from my class with Laura Murray

"Judy" by Jennifer Day

“Judy” by Jennifer Day

Detail from "Judy" by Jennifer Day

Detail from “Judy” by Jennifer Day

"The Remarkables" by  Camilla Watson

“The Remarkables” by Camilla Watson

"Not a City" by Betty Hahn

“Not a City” by Betty Hahn

My second class was "Fearless Freemotion Fillers" with Jenny K Lyon

My second class was “Fearless Freemotion Fillers” with Jenny K Lyon

"Purple Prisms" by Wayne Rhodes

“Purple Prisms” by Wayne Rhodes

"Rebel Rebel (David Bowie)" by Kristyn McCoy

“Rebel Rebel (David Bowie)” by Kristyn McCoy

Detail from "Rebel Rebel (David Bowie)" by Kristyn McCoy

Detail from “Rebel Rebel (David Bowie)” by Kristyn McCoy

"Bouncing Ball" by Coleen Walter

“Bouncing Ball” by Coleen Walter

"Beauty of the Beasts" by  Barbara Yates Beasley

“Beauty of the Beasts” by Barbara Yates Beasley

"Now you see him..." by Cat  Larrea

“Now you see him…” by Cat Larrea

"Polka Dodo" by  Susan Carlson

“Polka Dodo” by Susan Carlson

"Modern Roue Chromatique" by Laurie Ceesay

“Modern Roue Chromatique” by Laurie Ceesay

Thank you Chicago!

Chicago: 1

I started writing a post about my recent (ok, ok it was in April!) trip to Chicago with my Mum to check out the sights and head to the Chicago International Quilt Festival, but I never posted it because I’m just not a travel blogger and hated everything I wrote! Don’t get me wrong, I loved the city and all the sights but I don’t pay enough attention to the details of everything – where we ate, what we saw etc. I’m too busy taking in all the pretty things! So, instead, here are some photos of a few of the pretty things we saw (and ate)!

Best donut I have ever tasted, GF or not. This was the Meyer Lemon & PIstachio GF. I still dream about it!

Best donut I have ever tasted, GF or not. This was the Meyer Lemon & PIstachio GF. I still dream about it!

Harris Theater - Millenium Park

Harris Theater – Millenium Park

Willis Tower

Willis Tower

Picasso

Picasso

Chicago History Museum

Chicago History Museum

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The Chicago theatre at night

The Chicago theatre at night

Greetings from Chicago - seeing this was worth every penny of the $20 cab fare there!

Greetings from Chicago – seeing this was worth every penny of the $20 cab fare there!

Beautiful buildings round Astor Street

Beautiful buildings round Astor Street

The building from the movie High Fidelity in Wicker Park

The building from the movie High Fidelity in Wicker Park

Breakfast with a view at the John Hancock Centre

Breakfast with a view at the John Hancock Centre

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My favourite buildings in the city - Marina Towers

My favourite buildings in the city – Marina Towers

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Cloud Gate - Loved this so much. I could probably photograph it every day for the rest of my life and not get bored.

Cloud Gate – Loved this so much. I could probably photograph it every day for the rest of my life and not get bored.

I loved the city. I can’t say I loved the weather, this English Rose isn’t so good at -3*C in the morning and then 20*C by the afternoon! Everyone we met was lovely, the food was amazing and the city was just awesome. I’d definitely like to go back, but in the summer next time!

Have you ever been? What were your highlights?

Mini Raspberry Kiss

I’ve been seeing the Raspberry Kiss and Mini Raspberry Kiss blocks all over the internet for a long while and finally got myself together to have a go. I raided my scrap bins and was please with the results!

Mini Raspbery Kiss WIP

I used mainly Cotton and Steel basics, with a few precious bits of Anna Maria Horner and some Alison Glass with Kona Silver (I think – I’ve lost my colour card!) as the background.

Mini Raspberry Kiss Top

I’m happy with the outcome, now need to find the time to turn it into something, another cushion, perhaps, a wall hanging? I’m not sure, what do you think?

Pattern: Mini Raspberry Kiss by Michael Ann Made (Original Raspberry Kiss by Rachel of Wooden Spoon Quilts)
Size: 13.5″x 13.5″
Pieced by: Me
Fabric: Cotton & Steel basics, Anna Maria Horner, Alison Glass, Kona Silver
Lives: On my WIPs pile until I can make it into something!