Sunday 31 August 2014

The winner ...

... of this great book

Well, before I tell you the name of the lucky person who will receive a copy of this e-book, I want to explain how I chose someone.  This review was posted on this blog, and also on my blog, here.  All the comments on my own blog are numbered, but those on this one are not - hmm, must get that sorted out before the next review.  So all I did was allocate numbers to the comments on here running straight on from those on QuiltTimes.  That gave a total of 49 for Mr to chose from, and the number he chose was

and no.45 is Harrysmum, who said

I will send Harrysmum an email, but congratulations to her and thank you everyone who took the time to enter.  I will have another book review and giveaway in a couple of weeks, so do keep coming back and checking to see what you could win next time.

Friday 22 August 2014

Book Review and a giveaway

I'm sorry, this giveaway is now closed.  You can see who won here
(This book is published by Martingale Publications, and all the photography shown is by Brent Kane.)

As its title suggests, this book contains quilts designed by well known bloggers from around the world.  There are 19 stunning quilts included, all with very clear instructions, plenty of diagrams and templates where necessary.
The book starts off by stating the main rule about modern quilting, which is that “there are no rules”.  So, anything goes really in terms of shapes, colours, designs and quilting, and this is certainly borne out by the quilts which vary from minimalist, such as Petal Pod to quite the opposite, like Scattered and from a modern take on a traditional quilt such as Rainbow Stashbuster to improv piecing seen in Improv Color Blocks.

When I read the book, I loved the tips that are often included such as how to sew a smooth curve.  I also like the fact that many of the quilts also show suggestions for optional, pieced backings.  This is not something I’ve ever done before, but I can definitely see myself trying them in the future.

You will also learn something about each of the contributors, as they have all written a little about themselves and you can visit their blogs to see more of their work.

Which are my favourite quilts?  That’s not easy to answer as I really love Trees, which I could see in all sorts of Christmas prints and Starflower, which I think would look great in plain colours.  Then there’s Petal Pods which I’d love to make in shades of orange and raspberry, and Knots, which is calling (actually it’s shouting) out to me to make it in aquas and blues.

Now all I need is a magic wand to make my days longer so I can make them all.

As a reward for reading all this, Martingale Publications are offering an e-book version of this book to one of you. All you have to do is leave a comment below telling me what colours you would choose to make one of the quilts from this book. If you are a member of the Yorkshire Modern Quilt Group, leave another comment telling me so for an additional entry into the giveaway.

The giveaway small print:
1.     This giveaway is open to everybody, wherever you live, BUT please remember to make sure I can contact you if you are the winner.
2.     If you are a no-reply person, you will not be entered unless you leave an email address in your comment as I will not be able to get in touch with you.  (Note, if you are a Google+ person, you will be no-reply).
3.     This giveaway will also be available on my blog QuiltTimes
4.     The giveaway will close next Saturday, 30 August.
5.     The winner will be selected using Mr Random Generator.

Monday 18 August 2014

Sit & Sew, Saturday 16 August

There was a full house for our meeting, and lots of chat, fun and laughter.  Oh yes, there was some sewing going on too.

Sheila did a superb demonstration on reverse applique, and afterwards quite a few members had a go at it.  I am ashamed to admit that I did not get any photos of Sheila's examples (I specially loved her book covers) and nor did I take photos of some great work done afterwards by some of the group.  I am sorry about that, and if anyone has any photos and would like to share them, please just leave a comment below this post, and I'll get back to you.

We also had our usual show and tell session, so grab yourself a coffee/tea/wine/whatever and sit back and enjoy the show.
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Thursday 14 August 2014

In The Spotlight

In The Spotlight today is Hazel, one of the founders of our group. Hazel is an inspirational teacher and also runs regular pop-up shops offering us all the chance to feed our quilty habit.  If you visit her website, Cotton Cocktails, you can find out about the courses and workshops Hazel is holding, and you can also find the date of the next shop day, and even download price lists.  I hope you enjoy reading Hazel's answers to my questions and maybe learning something new about her.

Who/what inspired you to start quilting? 
I’d done lots of sewing, knitting, crochet, cross stitch etc and I bought a few quilting magazines but never had a go until I saw a beginner class advertised at Samuel Taylors which used to be on Meanwood Road. I made my first quilt and was hooked!

What do you love most about quilting?
I like everything about it! I love playing with colour and shapes and the actual process of sewing a quilt and seeing it develop. It’s brilliant because there is always something new to try.

Of the quilts you have made, which is your favourite, and why?
My favourite is a very classic looking blue and white 2 block quilt with Ohio stars and a chain block. It’s special because I made it for my dear departed brother who loved it.

What is your favourite technique, ie hand or machine sewing, appliqué, quilting, etc?
It’s hard to choose! I like easy piecing because it grows quickly, machine appliqué with blanket stitch edges but my favourite is probably free motion quilting because it can transform a quilt.

What new techniques do you hope to conquer in the future?
I haven’t anything in particular in mind at the moment but there’s always something new around the corner. That’s the brilliant thing about quilting.

Do you use patterns or make it up as you go along?
I sometimes start with a pattern but often change it in some way. I use Electric Quilt to plan most of my quilts and can’t imagine how I’d manage without it.

Would you describe your quilting style as scrappy or controlled?
I like to be in control! Scrappy quilts don’t really appeal to me as much as ones with a definite colour scheme. I like bright clear colours with lots of contrast to show up the designs.

When you’re starting a new project, do you have the design all worked out (on computer/paper/in your mind) before you start?
I do pretty much have the design worked out but will often leave decisions about the fabrics for the sashing, borders, and binding until I get to that stage. I can then try out what looks good before I cut and sew them in place.

Do you like using pre-cuts such as FQ bundles, jelly rolls, layer cakes or charm packs?
I do like pre-cuts as they’re a quick way to get started on a project and a good way to buy lots of coordinating fabrics in one go. I do think it’s a good idea to buy one or two of the fabrics in a larger amount at the same time to put aside for borders etc  as they often aren’t easy to find at a later date.

Do you have any advice for someone just starting out on their quilting adventure?
Join a class so you can learn the basics from someone who has previously made all the mistakes for you! Quilters love to share their hints and tips so quilting in a group is the best way to go.

Do you have a favourite quilt book?  If so, why is it your favourite?
I have a very large collection of quilting books which I add to all the time and I don’t really have one particular favourite.

In the quilt world, who do you find is a real inspiration to you?
I really admire Philippa Naylor's work and she is an inspirational teacher.

Can we see photos of three of your quilts, one early, one recent and one somewhere in the middle?                      

Tuesday 12 August 2014


Hello everyone. The other day I was talking to Hazel and she was saying that she is very busy, andstruggling to find time to keep our bog up to date. Well, before I knew what was happening, the words just popped out of my mouth and I offered to take over writing the blog for a while.  I hope you're all OK with this, but if not, or if you would like to share the writing, do let me know.

I have one or two ideas in mind for regular posts, but if there's anything else you think could be included, just shout. You'll need to shout quite loudly though, cos I've got a problem with one ear at the moment.

One of my bright ideas, which I am starting straight away is a regular "In the Spotlight" feature,where I will ask a willing volunteer to answer some questions for me, and I'll then write a blog post with their replies.

Another thing I'm going to be doing regularly is a book review.  I have persuaded several publishers (Martingale, CT Publications and American Quilters' Society so far) to send me e-books which I will then review here.  Some of these reviews will also include a giveaway of an e-copy of the book. I have a great list of books so far, some brand new out, some slightly older, but all with a modern theme (obviously) so I hope you enjoy this.

I also wondered if there is any interest in a Buy/Sell/Swap article from time to time?  This could be fabric, books, tools, finished quilts, UFOs, anything really with a quilt-related theme.  What is the general feeling about that?

One last thing (for now), if you write a blog and would like to be listed on the sidebar, please let me know the blog address and I'll add it straight away.

OK, well that's enough of my witterings for now, come back in a couple of days to see who is "In the Spotlight" this month.