Kindred Spirits QAL: Final Week


By Judith on January 25, 2021
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It’s the final week of the Kindred Spirits Quilt-Along!



Wow! It seems like only yesterday when we started with our very first Friendship Reel block back in September!

Initial feedback from the group reveals that having the quilt-along to focus on and a new block to tackle each week has definitely helped to distract from the pandemic and kept minds and hands busy in all the right ways!!

Last week we started to see some completed flimsies! What a delight!



And this week is all about the quilting, binding and finishing our quilts!

At last I can show you the 2 finished Kindred Spirits quilts that I made during our quilt-along!


Coastal:

64″ x 76″



This is the Coastal version of the Kindred Spirits Quilt, based on the main quilt-along graphic (above).

The fabrics used are all by Makower (see below) and are available in our online shop.


One of our Kindred Spirits, Trudi Wood, is a professional long-arm quilter (& a very good friend!) and she worked her quilting magic on the quilt, using one of her pretty fan pantographs!



Isn’t it spectacular! I love the wonderful texture and superior effects that are achieved from long-arm quilting!

Thank you Trudi for finishing off this quilt so beautifully!


Scrappy Tilda:

64″ x 76″

I tested all of the quilt-along blocks by making them first with mostly Tilda scraps. I love how different fabrics can completely change the look of a quilt, even when the design is the same!



I quilted this one on my domestic machine, using an organic wavy line across the width of the quilt.


A video tutorial on how to achieve this quilting design and also a demo on Free Motion Quilting is included in this week’s teaching video.



I’m delighted with both versions of my quilt, and I just know the Kindred Spirits are going to produce equally beautiful quilts! I can’t wait to see them!

We are currently working to reformat the Kindred Spirits Quilt-Along into a stand alone class for general sale. We’ll keep you posted!

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Kindred Spirits Quilt-Along: Update


By Judith on January 11, 2021
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I’ve been very neglectful in keeping you up-to-date here on our Kindred Spirits Quilt-Along! Apologies! I think perhaps Christmas put paid to my QAL rhythm and blog routine!!



Since I last updated you on the QAL we have made….

1 Light of Life Lantern (18″ Drunkard’s Path) block:


2 Flying Geese borders:


2 Spools blocks (9″ each):




And this week the ladies are making …

1 Circle of Hearts (9″ Applique) block:



2 Orange Peel (9″ Applique) blocks:



This week marks the end of all our block making! Wow! 17 weeks has gone by in a flash! The photos the ladies put up in the private Facebook Group are wonderful and it’s so exciting seeing the quilts growing week on week.


That just leaves 2 more weeks where we will be covering quilt top assembly and quilting and binding techniques bringing our QAL to an end on 31st January.


I’m very much looking forward to showing you some of the finished quilt tops in a few weeks time!

Stayed tuned!

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EPP Spring Wallhanging


By Judith on November 23, 2020
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We have reached the half way point in our Kindred Spirits Quilt-Along!!

 

It’s so wonderful seeing the many blocks being made in our private Facebook group, and the many different colourways and fabric choices personalising them all!

 

In fact we are already half-way through our block making!!  This week is the 2nd week of an English Paper Pieced block called Unity Tile!

 

 

English Paper Piecing (EPP) is an ancient hand piecing technique where fabric is hand sewn around paper shapes. The shapes are then sewn together and the papers removed.

 

EPP is a historical quilting technique that traces back to the 1770s. The earliest hexagon template that quilt researchers have found was made in England in 1770. Hexagons and English Paper Piecing became one of the most popular patterns and styles in England by during the early 1800’s.
Godey’s Ladies Book published the first hexagon pattern in 1835.

In the 1800’s paper was a luxury, so women reused what paper that was available, newspaper, old letters, poems, shopping lists, catalogues etc. This has enabled quilt historians to accurately date some of the earliest English Paper Pieced quilts, as the paper was often left in the quilts.  Many EPP quilts maintained their papers, either as a way of providing an additional layer of insulation or because the quilt top remained unfinished and they had yet to be removed.

There were also clues in the fabrics used; often velvets, upholstery fabrics, silks and dress cottons, taken from a fabric stash that may span years or even decades. This suggests that patchwork was a fashionable pursuit for the ladies of the gentry and upper middle classes in the eighteenth century. This is contrary to many beliefs that quilts were made purely for utility and practicality. Although this was often the case, EPP in particular was more of a leisure activity due to the time it took and the complexity of the geometric shapes.
Source: Modern Quilt Guild 

 

Our ladies have been beavering away on their hand sewing and we’re already seeing some finished blocks!

 

In addition to our Unity Tile, I asked a couple of ladies to consider getting creative with the Unity Tile templates and coming up with alternative projects!

 

Here is what Di (@willowbeckdesigns) made for us:

 

 

This is a sweet Spring Wallhanging, using 2 of the 3 EPP shapes in the Unity Tile block.

 

 

I just love how Di saw ‘flowers’ in these shapes and her interpretation reminds me of a fresh Spring Day when the garden is coming back to life and bursting with colour again!

 

 

A ray of sunshine on any dull day!

 

Thank you Di for making this lovely wallhanging to inspire us with ideas on how we can use our templates for other projects.

 

And soon I’ll show you 2 more fab ideas that Sarah (@sewmesarah) came up with!

 

Happy sewing!

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Dresden Petal Pouch


By Judith on October 22, 2020
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This week in The Kindred Spirits Quilt-Along we are making Dresdens!

 

Kindred Spirits QAL (Dresden)

 

During the 1920’s and 30’s, Dresden, Germany produced porcelain plates decorated with elaborate designs using flowers, fruits and foliage. These plates became the inspiration for the Dresden Plate quilt block throughout Europe and beyond.  While some Dresden blades can have smooth ends, often the blades are finished with a point or curve.

 

Large Dresden Block (Kindred Spirits QAL)

Typically dresden blocks have even numbered blades. We are making a large 12 bladed dresden for our sampler quilt, but you can make them any size and get creative with how they are pieced and finished.

 

Just take a look at some awesome dresdens from around the world in my Pinterest Dresden Board.

 

I’ve been showing the ladies in the Quilt-Along how to use their dresden template different ways, and also how to draw their own dresden templates.

 

Dresden Petal Pouch (kindred Spirits QAL)
Front

Dresden Petal Pouch (kindred Spirits QAL)
Back

 

 

I made my own dresden template to make this cute dresden embellished wristlet pouch!

 

Dresden Petal Pouch (kindred Spirits QAL)

 

I  paired some Essex Yard Dyed Linen (Denim) with Makower’s Sashiko fabrics to make a clutch size pouch (5″ x 9.5″).

 

The metal zipper and faux leather tab add a little sophistication but I just love the cuteness petal blades bring to mini dresdens!!

 

Dresden Petal Pouch (kindred Spirits QAL)

 

The simplicity of the dresden applique and hand stitching is all this little pouch needed.

 

So if you’d like to find out how to make your own dresden templates, and how to finish the raw edges of a curved petal blade check out my little video below!

 

 

Happy sewing!

 

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Kindred Spirits Quilt-Along


By Judith on September 3, 2020
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I’m super excited to let you know about my latest teaching project:

 

Kindred Spirits Quilt (Coastal) 64″ x 76″

 

This is the Kindred Spirits Sampler Quilt and I will be teaching this as a weekly quilt-along, starting 14th September through to end January ’21.

 

Each week there will be a new block to make and a new technique focus (some blocks have 2 weeks allocated).

 

This was a project I already had in mind for my actual classes at Conway Mill.  But as I’m not back to running my classes yet (thanks to Coronavirus!) I thought I would go ahead and teach it online!  And that means anyone can join in!

 

This quilt-along is all about building skills, building confidence and building community.  Here are a few more thoughts on what this quilt-along represents:

 

 

So what do you get?

 

All the teaching will come in the form of

 

  • pre-recorded videos emailed each week into your inbox. These videos will include accurately cuttin fabric and using templates.  The videos mean you have complete control -press pause, replay and sew at your own pace
  • PDF documents (colouring sheets & cutting instructions)
  • Professionally art-worked templates (as needed)

 

and you will be supported every step of the way through our interactive social media groups where you can ask questions, share tips and ideas, access bonus features, make new friends and create community!

 

And here are a few other colourways you could consider:

 

Kindred Spirits Quilt (Cool Christmas)

Kindred Spirits Quilt (Scrappy)

 

The full list of materials and equipment needed is available here, as well as the schedule of our block making throughout the 4 months.

 

And finally, by taking part in this Quilt-Along, you will also be supporting a charity close to my heart.

£5 from every registration will be donated to Shared Threads, who make reuseable sanitary pads and hygiene packs for women and girls who are struggling with period poverty at home and abroad.

 

Here’s Kirsty to tell you more:

 

 

If you’d like more information about the work of Shared Threads or how you can get involved, check out their website here.

 

And so the countdown begins!

 

I do hope you will consider joining us for an Autumn term of fun, learning and connecting!

 

(Booking will be available from 14th September here)

 

Happy sewing!

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