Tag Archives: tula pink

A few finished quilts!

If I’ve not already mentioned it, I’ve been busy really quite busy so far this year…actually I can’t quite believe we’re already a third of the way through it. I may have been quiet on here but at least I have a lot to show for my absence and the winter months which have mercifully come to and end.

I was gifted a huge stack of fabrics from my sister in law for Christmas (I know, what a lucky duck…) which helped immensely with my no-buying-fabrics New Year’s resolution (I have of course, since fell off the wagon numerous times, but I made it as far as March without spending unnecessarily!). One was a bundle of Tula Pink’s Saltwater…Tula Collage

…which, with an injection of linens from my stash, became a cute little boy-friendly baby quilt named ‘Wave Upon Wave Upon Wave’, available in my shop here.waveCollage

And another was a stack of Patty Sloniger’s Les Amis…amis Collage

…which I turned into this leafy medallion quilt named ‘Shenandoah’, also available for purchase in my shop. It’s fast become one of my favourite little-girl quilts so far, so I hope it find a new home soon.shenandoahCollage

Since then, it’s been all about the custom orders. Apparently it has been baby girl season as there has been a constant stream of pink round these parts. Here are just a couple of the recent commissions which have ended up in London and Texas, USA (I’m gradually collecting the US states but Texas seems to be keeping me in business with 5 quilts sent there so far. Missouri is in close second with 4…). I also sent a custom cat quilt to Canada and another to Portugal, so it’s been quite an international month or two!bente Collagekimcollage2

Finally, as a welcome break from all the pinks, was this vibrant yellow, black and white quilt for a little chap named Joseph. It’s so fun having the opportunity to work with different colours so I was thrilled when Joseph’s grandma asked for something a little different from the norm. This was a really easy, quick and enjoyable make, and I hope it will soon reach it’s new home in Utah (my 16th US state! Only 34 to go then…) making Collage joCollageThat’s not even it, I’m too embarrassed to show you how many WIPs I started amongst all this – but I’ll tell you it includes a couple of cushions for myself, several (!) baby quilts for the shop, and a mini for a swap :-/

If you like seeing in progress pictures, and for some more insight into what I’ve been up to, please check me out on Instagram – @lauradimplestitch

L xx

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Filed under Fabric, quilts

Feature Quilt – “The Birds and the Bees”

Happy Friday everyone!

As promised here are some pictures of my finished ‘Birds and the Bees’ quilt, which is now available on the Dimple Stitch shop here. I thought I may as well turn this blog post into a feature and include some images of the ‘making of’ – hopefully you find it as interesting as I do to see other peoples’ processes….Image

Fabric Selection –

Firstly a little about the fabric. If you’re a regular reader you will have seen me blog about deciding on fabric before. I’ve eyed up Tula Pink’s collections in the past, and finally settled on this collection as soon as I saw the little animals (always a winner for me!). Her designs are almost like little stories, and it’s easy to be drawn into her whimsical world! I’ve been reading her blog too and she’s pretty kick-ass. This is a really interesting post about her fabric designing process in case you’re interested. I chose the ‘Wasp’ and ‘Mist’ colourways for this quilt, as I love the wintery shades but also simply because I had already done a few ‘warm’ coloured quilts, that I wanted to do ‘cool’ one this time.

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Choosing a quilt pattern –

Tula’s fabric designs are so illustrative and artistic, that I really wanted to show them off, so I knew the quilt would have to include large blocks, as I did not want to cut up the prints too much. I wanted it to have something a little more than just a simple square block quilt though, so I decided to alternate large blocks with smaller ones sashed in solid white, creating little ‘windows’. And so, I did all the maths (a whole lot of maths!) to work out the size of each piece (many, many pieces!), and then got to making!

Making the quilt –

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The first steps in making the quilt are to iron the fabrics and then measure and cut out all the pieces (which can be the most time consuming part of the whole process). Then, they get laid out on the floor (the only flat space I have big enough for a quilt this size) and jiggled around until I am happy with the lay out and balance of colour and shade. Once I was pleased with the layout for this quilt, it was time to piece together the ‘window’ blocks. All 21 of them….

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When piecing, I do them in a long continuous ‘string’ so that I do not have to cut the threads each time. It just saves a little bit of time, and keeps them all in the right order. I then added the sashing and had a finished block. 1 down, 20 to go.

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Once I had pieced together all the windows, I then sewed them to my larger blocks in a checker board design and finally had a finished quilt top!

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Now for the fun part (well, actually I find all of it fun). After basting the back, the batting and the quilt top together (ok, I take it back, I don’t enjoy that part) I can start on the quilting. After much deliberation, I decided to quilt it in vertical wavy lines, in a pale grey thread. The waves echo some of the shapes in the fabrics and it gives it a very organic feel. It also creates a lot of texture in the quilt and makes it all puckered and wrinkly and lovely!

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Next came the binding. I used to hate this part but now I really love it. It’s like the final crowning piece of the puzzle that sets the whole quilt off. I pieced the binding with a dark navy cotton, broken up by scraps left over of the quilt fabrics to tie the whole thing together. After pressing in half and rolling it up (this makes it easier to handle), I machine sewed it to the back of the quilt, adding my label, and then folded it over and sewed it to the front. Voila! A finished quilt!

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I am so pleased with this one, I just want to snuggle under it myself! I particularly love the back, it’s very simple but I think the polka-hearts are just so adorable that I’m considering doing a quilt based on this back design. Watch this space!

The final part of the quilt process is naming it. I always name my quilts after songs and considered a couple of different ones until realising that there is a famous song called ‘The Bird and the Bees’ which of course was the perfect fit. It’s a golden-oldie and is such a charming and cheerful song that it really suited it.

So, because this post isn’t long enough already(!) here is the song, to cheer up your weekend!

I hope that was interesting, if so I will do some more of these.

Thanks for reading!

L xx

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Filed under quilts

Too many beautiful fabrics

Happy Monday everybody!

I hope your week has gotten off to a good start? Shame it’s a gloomy day 😦 Now the sun is slowly disappearing, it’s getting colder and the nights are soon going to be drawing in, perhaps you need a quilt to add a splash of colour to your home? You can never have too many soft furnishings!

Today I wanted to talk a little about choosing and buying fabrics from online shops as it is something I seriously struggle with. This is mainly because there are so many gorgeous prints out there and so many brilliant fabric shops that I find it to be a very overwhelming (although mostly fun) task! It takes me hours to browse through all the choices, compare different patterns, attempt to match colours, compare prices on different shops etc etc that sometimes I even give up empty-handed as I’m afraid to make the wrong decision, or buy too many! There are just too many lovely fabrics. Sometimes if I do finally make my decision and place an order, when the fabrics arrive they aren’t as I expected and not always a good match with one another. Fabric doesn’t always photograph well and colours look different on all computer screens, so sometimes it is hard to tell how a fabric will look in the flesh.

So, how do you make the right decision? Tree Fall Designs have an interesting post about how to build up a collection of fabrics and here are a couple of my tips that I can pass on from my most recent (and successful) shopping experience:

  • Try to have the product in mind so you can focus your search. Is it for a baby girl? A teenage boy? A pet? Is it a large lap quilt or small cushion? Do you want to create something modern and abstract or much more traditional? Do you have a central colour you want to use? I find if I am browsing with no starting point, there are too many fabrics that jump out at me and I end up with a cart full of higgledy-piggledy un-matching fabrics, and a dilemma in choosing which direction to go in.
  • Buy from fabric collections. If you are concerned about matching colours using thumbnails on a computer screen, there are hundreds of designer fabric collections available which have been designed specifically to compliment each other. Sometimes you can buy these in pre-cut bundles which is a great starting point for a new project.
  • When I am choosing fabric for a quilt, I try to get an even mix of light, medium and dark coloured fabrics, and also an even combination of small and large prints, or a mix of patterned and solid fabrics. This creates visual interest and texture.
  • Design your own! I eventually hope to design my own fabrics so that my quilts really are completely unique to me and one of a kind. There are plenty of places to go for this but Spoonflower seems to be one of the most popular and accessible.

So, after several hours of fabric shopping this morning here is what I settled on for my next three projects:

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one, two + three = Warm and wintery plaid. A mixed bag off tartan ‘oddments’ from Scotweb Tartan Mill. These are going to make a lovely festive and snuggly ‘hunting lodge’ style lap quilt for the winter. I can picture it on an armchair by the fire already.

four, five + six = Fresh Scandi style. Lotta Jansdotter’s ‘Bella’ range in the blue, teal and citrus colourways. I love all of her ranges as they are very clean and graphicy, but this new one is particularly fun and I like that it is gender neutral too. Have a read of her interesting blog post about developing the Bella range – I love that she doesn’t use a computer!

seven, eight + nine = Pretty, nature-inspired whimsical prints. Tula Pink’s ‘Birds and the Bees’ range in ‘Creek and ‘Wasp’ colourways. The colours and patterns of the prints are quite similar to some of the patterns that inspired me in the Drusilla Cole book I blogged about recently, so I was drawn to this collection as soon as I saw it. Also, anything with animals on catches my eye, so as soon as I saw the squirrels I was sold! I’m not yet settled on a design for this quilt, but I have a few ideas that I’m looking forward to developing.

I can’t wait for them to arrive! My next dilemma will be which quilt to start on first!

Which are you most drawn to?

L xx

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September 10, 2012 · 5:24 pm