Artnextdoor's Blog

My place to be creative


Blocks 3 and 4 for DD’s quilt.

Block 3Block 4

I have completed all 12 blocks for dear daughters new quilt.  I now have to cut the sashing and stitch the blocks together.  I also have to consider the quilting pattern, as there is such a large area in the centre of each block I have endless possibilities – mmm which to choose?

I have to put things on the back burner for a few days as I am off to the Festival of Quilts which is being held at the NEC outside Birmingham, just 11 miles from my home.  I will, if you remember, be attending two workshops this year.  The first on Friday is with Sandra Meech entitled Digital Imagery in Stitched Textiles and on Saturday, Colour in Design with Kaffe Fassett.

I am very interested in using images in my work, having done so recently whilst working towards my City & Guilds qualification although that experiment did not make it to the final piece of work.

Whilst studying at what was then the Birmingham Institute of Art and Design, now part of Birmingham City University, back in the 1990’s I was awarded a prize for my use of colour, so Saturdays workshop should be interesting.  I have the fabrics (please see previous post) to which I have added a couple more as I felt I needed a dark fabric.  I now just need to pack up everything else.

On Friday, after my workshop, I have arranged to meet one of my fellow distance learning colleges for coffee and a chat about our experiences, something I am very much looking forward to.

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Since finishing my City & Guilds in Patchwork and Quilting I have………..

Since sending off all the images, evaluation and cost details for the City & Guilds Patchwork and Quilting qualification to my tutor, Edwina Mackinnon, for signing off I have made a quilted cushion cover from one of my experiments with the 10 minute block, quilted some backgrounds ready for making into bags and made some more backgrounds ready for the quilting process.  Along with stitching 12 more 10 minute blocks to make into a quilt using 2 Kaffe Fasset fabric packs from the Cotton Patch, pictures of these are to follow, but here are the first few of the things I have been up to since last Friday.


City & Guilds Patchwork And Quilting Final Assessment–It’s Finished!

At long last my final assessment piece is finished and the images sent for marking.  The piece is installed in its final position for all to see, well those who venture up the first flight of stairs and look up the second in our house, as it is situated at the top of the second set of stairs.

I can’t believe I started this course three years ago on Saturday.  During that time many things have happened, some good, some sad, some bad, some happy, all of them had an impact on the course and my feelings about my work – overall I learnt much but didn’t use it to the best of my ability.  I should have used my time in a better, more organised way, instead of procrastinating it would have been sensible to have selected my inspirational sources with a different eye and spent time working on the theme rather than just picking something I could work with that was easy.

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Sick Sewing Machine Again!

My poor old sewing machine has become unwell again nearly 12 months since it last fell ill.  This time I think it is the swing arm that has a problem, the noise is dreadful therefore I have had to book it in with the sewing machine doctor.  I am in the middle of stitching my last City & Guilds assessment piece which has to be completely finished and images sent for assessment by 25th June.  I really hope I can get it fixed in time to finish the piece.

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Ready for Quilting – at last!

This piece has taken me ages to reach this point for various reasons but at least I have finally got to the stage where I can start quilting it.

I had my big son stand at the top of the first flight of our stairs – where the piece is going to hang eventually.  It kept him quiet for a while perhaps I could employ him to hold things up permanently?

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City & Guilds Patchwork and Quilting Final Assessment

The above photos are from my City & Guilds in Patchwork and Quilting level 3.  The assessment requires that I design a quilt, wall hanging, container or an accessory from a design source of my choice, using any techniques and materials that are appropriate.

I had decided to make another wall hanging with a traditional feel to it, with that in mind I chose my starting point; the window tracery from the Park View Square building in Singapore, from there I moved on to looking at the lead lights in the windows at Mont St Michel in France.  I created patchwork blocks from some of these window patterns and possible quilting patterns from others.  Working with my design programme EQ7 I took these patchwork blocks and arranged and re-arranged  them within a long narrow quilt shape, which reflects the shape of the windows in Mont St Michel.  The dimensions for my wall hanging are 21” by 60”, the space I have to hang this quilt is next to a stained glass/leaded light arched window on the stairs of my home.

I had intended to dye the fabric myself but have to re think this as I have a bad dose of bronchitis at the moment (again!)  The colours for the fabrics have come from one of my flower photos which I have manipulated in Kaleidoscope Kreator 3 and Photoshop elements.

Now to set to and complete the project – I have set myself the a time frame of the end of May to have the hanging finished and up on the wall, I’ll let you know how I get on.

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City & Guilds Patchwork and Quilting – Final Assessment Piece

Remember my digital art from last year?  Well it is still an on going activity; I am thinking of using some of these manipulated photos in my final assessment piece, I have printed them onto fabric so I know it is feasible and they look good.  As usual time is my problem I have to have this done by the end of May, so it won’t be very big, although the making doesn’t take long, working through the design process seems to take me ages; then choosing the final one is very difficult perhaps I need to make a series.

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City & Guilds Wall Hanging Assessment WIP

Since I lasted posted – way back at the beginning of February – I have finished my knitting, knitted another cardigan for me and am part way through a girl’s jacket made from the left overs of my cardigan; the black and red quilt is finished and already given away.  Yet again I have forgotten to take a photo of the completed thing. I was up to layering up the quilt sandwich at my last post, after which I decided rather than machine quilting the piece I’d tie each dark triangle and the border with red perle thread, Matthew, the recipient of the quilt, was very pleased with it whereas I most happy with the quilt label I had stitched to the back.
I also made 8 dozen cup cakes on 20th February, half of which were for Matthew’s 21st birthday party, the other half for the freezer; – I enjoyed making and icing all 96 cakes but my back certainly complained that night!

I have also been continuing to work on my wall hanging which is now (finally) at the stage where I can start quilting. Above is a photo what do you think of it?

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City & Guilds Patchwork and Quilting Wall Hanging Assessment WIP

Below shows the wip for my wall hanging assessment.  Some of the design work I has already been posted here.  I have transferred the pattern on to freezer paper.  Using a craft knife I have cut the sections up but left small tags to keep it all together; these tags will be cut as I remove each section to work on it, once the section is completed it will be return to the space left by the freezer paper and appliqued into place.  When all the sections have been worked in this way I will mark up the scalloped edge and remove the freezer paper pattern.  The section outside the scalloped edge has to be discharged and recoloured this I intend to do once the other parts are attached and finished.  Well that’s the plan anyway, but all best laid plans…………Wall Hanging Pattern

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City & Guilds Patchwork and Quilting


Below are the images of the cushion I made for the item for an interior assessment.  The cushion is for my computer chair as I need to support my lower back whilst working.

I chose to take the theme/design inspiration from the trees I can see from my front window.  The colours are also inspired by the trees in autumn.  At the time decay and loss were high in my thoughts, which I have tried to indicate in the cushion by just applying the small triangles in the centre section with small cross stitches, this will enable these triangles of colour to curl and fray as the cushion is used.

Please remind me to think very carefully about using velvet in an application like this again as it was a complete nightmare to work with.