Sunday, 26 June 2016

Boro Patching Ideas for Instastitch

Here are some ideas for making your piece into 'real' Boro.

Patch stitched on with sashiko stitching and indigo sashiko thread. 
 And then surrounded by one of Sue Spargo's circle suggestions in
Valldani Perle # 8 Variegated thread.

Patched with matching sashiko thread stitching.


Patched from the back with the colour showing through the holes
You can create holes if need be!!!
These ones were real.
Pity about the very messy back!!!!

Grided sashiko stitching to secure the patch in variegated thread.
Note that the stitching goes just passed the edge of the patch.

This patch is caught in with the sashiko stitched rows and nothing else.

This patch was stitched on with patching sashiko thread just in from the 
outside edges. The feature circular stitching design of Sue's was 
added - basically ignoring the patch - just go up and over it.

Block Five should be up online soon - I can't wait.

Japanese Boro Instastitch Stitching Close Ups

As promised here are some close up photos of my stitching
on the first four of Sue Spargo's  Instastitch blocks.

Sashiko stitching in indigo sashiko thread following the lines on the weave 
of the fabric.

Same idea - Sashiko stitching in Ecru sashiko thread.

Same idea  - in tan and blue sashiko thread.

French knots in tan Sashiko thread - one wrap around the needle.

Sashiko stitched in tan Sashiko thread - a traditional Sashiko design 
known as Yarai (Bamboo Fence).

Randomly spaced rows or sashiko stiching on the persimmon dyed fabric
and seed stiching on the indigo using Sue's Eleganza #8 Variegated Perle
thread - colour number EZM17 thread.

Sashiko stitched circles - Ecru Sashiko thread.

French Knots on the rows of the persimmon dyed fabric (looking
way too bright in this photo).

Sashiko stitching in EZM17 on the indigo fabric -  a traditional Sashiko 
design called Kasumi. Because Japan is so mountainous mist 
is a common occurrence, so is often depicted in traditional 
Japanese landscapes.

Back soon with patching ideas.

Saturday, 25 June 2016

Japanese Boro Instastitch

This is Sue Spargo Instastitch that I am making in my old Japanese fabrics.

I am so enjoying this project. Sue publishes a new block
each month. It is online and free. 

Sue gives you the piecing plan and suggestions for the hand stitched
embellishing. I am deviating a bit from the stitching plan so I can 
keep my piece looking a little more traditionally Japanese.

I have sashiko stitched these circles instead of Sue's back stitched suggestion.

I have seed stitched (on the left) rather than Tete de Boeuf Stitches
and have added some vertical sashiko stitching in the piece beside it.

I decided to add a touch tan colour here with French Knots (I know not very Japanese).
The fabric that I am using in this colour have mostly been dyed with 
persimmon juice, so they too are special.


Sue embroidered leaves in this section.
But here I have used a piece of old fabric that I bought at the Boro Museum 
Shop in Japan. It was two pieces of old fabric sashiko stitched together 
and the shop had little bundles for sale.
You can see the front of my piece on the left and the back on the right.
I have used the same piece in reverse in block 3.

I am so enjoying using these special pieces from my collection.

Back soon with a post on stitching close ups and another on patching ideas.

Friday, 24 June 2016

Mrs Holder Progess

My Mrs Holder Block of the Month quilt has been on display in the window 
at the shop for a month so progress has slowed down.

But now we have a new window display so it come home more often 

and get more stretched hexagons added to it.

These hexies have 1" sides.

This last blue row has 84 hexies going around. 

Each row increases by six hexagons.

The piece on our double bed just to give you an idea on how big it is now.

This is where I am heading with it. 
This is the original made by Mrs Holder between 1880  and 1889
in the UK.

So really there is still a lot to go,
which is great because I am really enjoying working on it.
I find it very relaxing as you just keep adding hexies without too much thinking!

Mine will get scrappier as hers did, the further out I go.

You can join us with this Sew Along With Us Block of the Month.
Contact us at:

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Breakfast Club

Last Saturday was Breakfast Club and now I have all my twenty blocks made.

These are the ones that we had for Show and Tell at class - they were made 
over the last month. But I forgot to post them.

These are the ones the class members are making this month and then 
they too will be finished their twenty blocks.
It has been so great to see everyone keeping up and 
getting their blocks made each month.

We will be having an exhibition in the classroom at the end of the year,
so do stop by then to see their work.
Their blocks are all so different as they had a choice 
this year of what fabric range they used.

The book we have been using "Vintage Quilt Revival" has 
presented each block and another project using that block.
This is presented as a cushion in the book, but I am
 going to use it as a centre of my finished quilt. 

I am planning to make my blocks into a medallion quilt -
watch this space.

Saturday, 18 June 2016

Little Quilts For NICU

The last week or so has seen me busy making these six Little Quilts
for our Community Progamme. These Little Quilts go up to Auckland 
Hospital's Neo-Natal Intensive Unit.

These are the larger ones that stay in the Unit and cover the incubators 
to make the area look more homely and to reduce the light on the newborn babies.
They measure approximately one metre by 80 centimetres.

The pile is ready to go off to the wonderful ladies who hand sew the 
bindings down for me.

These two are panels just simply quilted.
We have lovely wholesalers that donated these fabrics.
It is always so good to see them swing in behind our programme with donations.

This one uses our pre-printed black and white sashing fabric. It will be a shop 
sample for a while giving ideas on how to use the fabric and then 
it will go up to the hospital.

We get such wonderful feedback from the staff when I deliver a pile 
at the end of each month, from the Nurse in charge of the until who sends 
lovely photos of babies using the quilts and from families who comment if 
they meet me or some even send lovely emails or letters.

These two are just simple squares made from scraps and put together with a while
background print. The quilting is simple - either straight down beside the seams or diagonally across the squares.

The smaller ones that we have always made are now too small for the modern 
incubators, but they are still given to families to take home with the babies.
The smaller ones measure a minimum of 20" by 24".

If you would like to make some of these quilts for our programme
we would love you to join us. Use your bright or pastel scraps and have fun.
Please don't use wool bating in them as the hospital washing system
is too hot for that.We usually use our 80/20 Cotton/Polyester batting
 but Polyester is fine too.

Send your Little Quilts into the shop or drop them in when you are in.

Thursday, 9 June 2016

1800s Cross Stitch

Despite having several quilting projects on the go, my 
1800s Schoolgirl Sampler is making some progress.

It now looks more like a sampler now that it has the alphabet
being stitched.

I so like the story behind this design. It is taken from "Sarah's House" 
by Blackbird Designs. The original Sampler made by Sarah was never finished.
It seems that she realized that there was not going to be enough room 
for the whole alphabet to fit in the space that she had allowed.
So this might be why she never finished it.

Mine of course is not finished either as the top row needs more letters
and then there is a stitched vine border to go all around it.
But it will always only get up to 'S' in the alphabet.

Sunday, 5 June 2016

Applique Quilt Makes Progress

My new hand applique quilt is also making steady progress.

I posted the centrepiece a while ago.

But since them more sections have been added around it.
These two go in opposite corners.


Then these two in the other two corners.


Next two of this block for the sides.

Now it is on to the two blocks for the top and bottom.

I am enjoying the slightly quirky flowers that Irene Blanck has designed for this project.

That will be the traditional applique finished and English Paper Pieced borders come next.
Back soon with the last applique sections and the first border.

Instastitch in Old Indigo

I am so enjoying following along with Sue Spargo and her monthly posts of Instastitch.

It is a great opportunity to get into my collection of old indigo fabrics.

I have collected these over many trips to Japan and this is the 
perfect project for using them.

Month One

Month Two

Month Three

I may add more stitching as the urge takes or add more at the quilting stage.

Month Four is ready for the hand stitching at this week's Japanese Group.