Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Like other Australian quilters, I'm devastated by the images of the Queensland floods.  I lived in that state for 26 years, and nearly every place I lived is now under water or in danger of being flooded.  The little town of Forest Hill in the Lockyer valley, where I lived while I went to Ag College, has been completely evacuated; it's some of the richest farm land in Australia, and it's terrible to see it under water.

My family is in Rockhampton, all safe and well, but completely cut off.  It will be a while before life goes back to normal.

The dreadful images of destruction inspired me to do something to contribute to the Relief Appeal. When I think of floods it brings the story of Noah to mind, so I designed a set of patterns based on a rainbow and dove, and they are for sale for $15.  You get a border, corner and two blocks, plus a panto.  They'd be nice for a Noah's ark quilt, or anything needing a nice formal pattern. You can pay by Paypal just by clicking on the button.  I will donate all the proceeds to the flood appeal, and email the patterns once Paypal notifies me of the payment.

There are months of hard work ahead for all the people affected.  My ex's family went through the Brisbane flood in 1974 and lost nearly everything; the government ended up giving them a payment of $151, which even then was laughable.  Hopefully we'll raise enough money this time to help all those in need.

Rainbow's End Pattern Set for Computerised quilting.  All proceeds donated to Queensland Flood Relief Appeal.

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Sunday, January 2, 2011

 I've had a little bit of free time over the Christmas break, which was lovely, but I didn't forget the club designs.  It helped that I  needed to get designs for customer quilts finalised, so those new designs go straight into the club for this month.  I'll show some photos tomorrow of some of the designs quilted out.

Please click on the images to see them more clearly.

The panto designs range from old favourites, like Butterflie and Ferny, to new ones like Blossomtime.  That's destined for an oriental quilt, and the trial stitchouts look great.
 The Filigree Vine is a good way to fill a wide border without over-quilting it.  It can go 9"wide easily, with great coverage, no blank bits.  Skinny Feather is a nice simple border that looks good quilted, and is quick to stitch.
 More simple borders and p2p designs, because you can never have too many of those.  We often use the Dovetail as a filler around embroidery designs, just something to cut down the unquilted space.  The Scrollz designs are great for the same thing, or sashes and little borders.
 I really like frames just lately, and made up a few to have on hand.  They  can be used on placemats and small wallhangings, around embroidery blocks; pillows and totebags are another use, with a monogramme in the blank space to personlise it.
 I've been playing around with the idea of tile designs for a while, and these are just the first few.  The Bali tile design  was made for a Log Cabin quilt, as the two halves of the design neatly matched the light/dark division of the block.  Because the designs are P2P they are more continuous than a single design placed over each pieced block.  I'm going to work on lots more of these, there are so many possiblities.  And as you can see from the Papillion design, they make nice offset pantos too.
 The design I had the most fun with is the Broken Feather set.  It was so much fun to fit them to the embroidery quilt I was working on (still am working on it, it's a big one) and I enjoyed it a lot more than a continuous feather border.  I could place the motifs to follow the wavy piecing of the borders, and there was no pressure about getting everything to fit exactly; the little space between the motifs doesn't have to be exact each time, so it was no problem if things were a little bit out of place.

The bobbin tension on the machine was another thing, necessitating the unpicking of several repeats; the culprit was a tiny ring of grime and lint around the post in the hook assembly.  Once that was cleaned out, the tension was perfect.  Thank heavens it was such a simple thing to fix.