Friday, 17 February 2017

The Siblings Together Menagerie of Quilts

The Siblings Together Bee 2 has been running a few years and although the membership has changed over that time the pleasure and fun of making as a group is just the same. Everyone involved has had the pleasure of seeing beautiful and unique  quilts wend their way off to the Siblings Together charity. We thought it would be fun to review the finished quilts over the last couple of years. There have been quite a few so we have divided these up into a couple of posts.

One of the many great things about making quilts for children is that matching seams, lost points etc etc which cause us quilters such heartache at times is to a child or young person completely irrelevant. Ok they don't want quilts that disintegrate the first time they are washed or have gaping seams but they do want quilts that have bright and cheery designs that have the less tangible but equally important sense that this has been made for them and with love. You can also indulge your sense of fun and worry less about modern design and originality!! So now for  a simply wonderful group of quilts of animals and birds that got made last year.

Judith of JustJudeDesigns asked for a hen block to be made. With the variety of fabrics a group of quilters can bring to a quilt you get the beautifully scrappy quilts which magically just blend together.






Next up was an appliqué owl quilt for Doti. Again a wonderful selection. Not all of us are as confident at appliqué as others (well that's probably just me...) but again the very nature of these quilts just mean they all have more character....







The same could apply to the wonderfully characterful hedgehogs that Ann had us making. In the haste to get this quilt off no picture was taken so you will have to do with pictures of my contributions. Yes I agree the one on the left looks as if it has enjoyed rather too many fermented  apples!!!





And last but certainly not least was Sally's request for the delightful Dog Gone Cute block from the very talented and generous Lorna McMahon of Sew Fresh Quilts. Lorna has designed many wonderful animal quilts and often has them as part of a quilt along so are free but also has a positive zoo in quilt form in her shop.





If you would like to make a quilt for Siblings Together please check out the "Important Information" page at the top of the blog.

Next time more quilts but no animals in the next batch...

Jenny - the lilac cat

Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Marigold Quilters.

The Marigold Quilters are fabulous supporters of quilts for Siblings Togther and this year have made eleven wonderful quilts. Janice from the group explains how they became involved.

"We first got to know each other in a patchwork class in Chichester quite a few years ago.  Although the class stopped, we carried on meeting occasionally even if it was just for coffee.  Last summer we decided to hire the village hall to meet once a month and have a whole day sewing. Our first thought was just to ‘do our own thing’, perhaps tackling some of our UFOs or using up some of the stash but we really felt we wanted a bit more of a purpose.
 So, I Googled ‘quilts for charity’, found Siblings Together, and we immediately agreed that making quilts for you would  be just the project we were looking for.  So we pooled our stash and orphan blocks and worked together to make eleven quilts so far.  We hope they are what you want."
They certainly are Janice! Thanks very much on behalf of the Siblings Together charity.






If you are on Facebook do take a look at the Siblings Together charity's page as they are posting pictures of the quilts as they receive them plus other information about  what they do.

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Drop Dead Gorgeous: The ladies of Bee 2!!


imageNow I can make that outrageous comment because I didn’t make this quilt other than the final assembly. Virtually all of the blocks come from my wonderful bee mates of the Siblings Together Bee 2.
I was Bee mamma for the very first time last September.  Siblings Together is a UK-based charity that brings together siblings that are split up in our care system for a holiday where happy memories of being together can be made and bonds kept alive. Each year quilters across the world make something like hundred quilts so that each child on these camps can have their own as momento of this special time together. There are lots of initiatives to get quilters involved.

Being relatively new to quilting and feeling a bit nervous about taking on the responsibility of other people making for me I did lots of research as I tend to do when I’m unsure about things. As an aside ahead of having our first child I read so many parenting books I could have passed a masters degree in child care although hands on experience was nil!!    Some of it even came in useful! Any way back to my quilt research I learnt people liked reasonably quick and easy blocks, preferably enabling them to use scraps, with a fairly broad colour range and from the mama’s perspective an overall design with wriggle room in case the blocks are inconsistently sized. Well step forward the Fieldcrossing quilt , a free design from Cloud Nine,  it has all these elements and more. Heaven  knows  why it is called Field Crossing but it is a beautiful design.
So we now have a finished quilt and isn’t she a stunner. I think it may be my favourite quilt to date.
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I chose an all over fmq design of curves to complement the pointy elements of this design. The wadding was Dream Puff and the finished quilting was certainly more pronounced and puffy. Apparently it’s nice and warm and not as thin feeling as some other waddings. Don’t worry I shan’t be sleeping under it to check the product’s claims!!
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In fact it must’ve been an easy block to make because most of the members very kindly sent me way more than I asked for, in fact enough to create two quilts. This is the other  one.
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I wanted this one to have a bit more masculine feel to it hence it’s rather strong graphic design. It’s also made thinking that there will probably be teenage boys and some will be very tall. I think I may have reached the absolute maximum size on my domestic sewing machine. Just now need to get these labelled and off.  Am I the only one who hates the labelling…..?

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Mowbray Quilters

The Mowbray quilters of Thirsk, North Yorkshire have generously made and sent eight wonderful quilts to Siblings Together for this years camps.



Many thanks go to Pauline Gacal for sending the photos and to the ladies of Mowbray Quilters for supporting our campaign for 100 quilts for Siblings Together.

At the time of writing we have 87 linked quilts. Fantastic! Take a look at our "Quilt Link Up" page above to see all the wonderful quilts and don't forget to link your quilt too!

Siblings Together have asked that if possible we send the quilts via Royal Mail rather than by courier. The reason being that their office is manned during office hours and Royal Mail deliver within these hours. Sometimes courier companies deliver outside of these hours and if there is no one in the office to receive the parcel it is taken away by the courier company and it is sometimes difficult to get the parcel re-delivered. Thanks.




Friday, 13 May 2016

Orphan Medallions and how I make them - an example




It all started with this delectable mountain block from  Carina .   I decided it was such a bold block it would make a striking centre of a sizzling medallion in hot colours - orange, pink and maybe some yellow.  

I also found some scrap orange stars that came from the lovely Julie who always seems to conjure up fabulous quilts from scraps - she is truly inspiring and I decided the nine patch and rail fence blocks, also donated by Carina, would feature somehow.  


The centre was quite dark so I thought I should go with something lighter as a contrast and squares of 2wenty Thr33 fabric donated by Emma seemed a good match as the colours are pink, orange, mustard and grey.  The squares repeat the star centres. 

I cut lots out but it seemed chaotic at first (sorry no photo - you will have to trust me on that), so I thought I'd repeat the nine patch that would feature later in the quilt.  This seemed more restful to my eye.

My borders didn't quite fit at first hence the skinny dark pink border round the centre block.  I love those skinny borders that permit a tiny punch of strong colour and help everything to measure up to the same width/length.   

Once those blocks were patched together I added another scrappy thin border which repeated all the colours of my chosen scheme.  It now looked a bit square!   


Time to add in some triangles to repeat the pointy-ness of the delectable mountain centre block and those star points.  I cut lots of triangles from my hot colours scrap box and used a coloured square as my cornerstone.



For my final border I had been thinking about a border of alternating rail fence and nine patch blocks but preferred the more open look of the solid Kona White.  I kept those blocks as my cornerstones - two donated by Carina and two in similar colours that I made to match.  


And here it is ... 









The binding was a scrappy one that repeated some of the 2wenty Thr33 fabric from Emma.  



If you have an odd block somewhere and a few other orphans to match why not set yourself a creative challenge and make a simple medallion quilt - you could then donate it to siblings together! 

Think of what you will learn in the process.  I know I have learnt so much about colour placement, value, positive v negative space, repetition of shapes.  I do seem to like making them.

Here are a few I made earlier:  


Monday, 9 May 2016

Who would like to be a bee?

One of the ways quilts have been made for Siblings Together is through one of the quilting bees started up just for that purpose. They are a great way to make quilts for Siblings Together.


Each member is allocated a month when they are "Queen Bee", the queen chooses a large, simple block  and each bee member makes a block which they send to the queen who makes a quilt from them. The queen also suggests a colourway and we try to work from stash.


We are looking for new members to join Siblings Together Bee 1. So, if you would like to join the fun please leave a comment below and we will be in touch. If you are a no reply blogger please leave an email address so we can contact you.

These are some of the lovely quilts made by the bee last year.

Thursday, 28 April 2016

QAYG tile block drive - one quilt finished!

I wrote on Monday that I had received five quilt as you go blocks from some lovely generous quilters.

Since then I have received even more!

Enough to finish one quilt already.

It didn't really take me long to add the sashing and stitch the whole thing together - in fact it took me less than one day !


Here are the blocks all trimmed and ready to be sashed.


And here they are sashed and bound - job done!  I love how these blocks came from a group of people but all blend together so well - bit like a community of quilters don't you think!  

Thanks to Joanne, Jennifer, Biff, and Linda for all the blocks - I hope I got that right !  

The good news is I have two more from Linda to start the next quilt.  I just need seven more blocks to join them - I used the blue one .....


If you want to make a block or two the tutorial can be found here.  I've linked it up on our Quilt Link Up Page here as no 50!  We are half way to our target of 100 quilts and I feel we should be celebrating!