Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Square it up!

The quilt made for my dad involved a chess board design with 32 appliqued squares representing things and people he loves. That was a lot of squares to design and sew so in the interests of self preservation I delegated and sent some down to my sister to do!

As usual we had left ourselves a tight time margin and I was so glad I pulled it off! Would you like a tour of some of my squares?

Some of my squares were felt appliqué.

This one was commemorating my grans ability to mistake salt for sugar in her apple pies

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Followed by my dads love of scrabble. Individually embroidered felt squares sewn onto the backing fabric.

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Most of my squares were based round my usual fabric applique.

The Welsh Rugby Union logo for my dads love of rugby and my husbands choice of design to try and establish his reputation as my dad’s chess nemesis! This design was actually based on a photo of a tattoo he found on the internet. I just printed it out, scaled and traced it. In order to get the flow of the ribbon right a wrapped one ribbon length around the felt piece before sewing down. A bit of iron on hem tape helped a lot here to stabilise the ribbon.

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This square represented my dads love of music and is the opening bars of the trombone section of the Jupiter from Holtz Planets. The music staves were sewn on and then the notes drawn on in fabric pen. Unfortunately I forgot to let my disappearing ink disappear before setting the fabric pen with a hot iron so I have these purple marks in it. With more patience and time I would have embroidered the notes but time was marching on!

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A goldfinch

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Here you can see some of my creation process. My brother penned the drawing and I just traced the elements and transferred it to fabric.


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The childhood caravan design used the same process. A quick Sketch on paper and then trace and divide the elements. A little thought is needed to determine the order in which you layer the elements up but other than that the pictures can build quite easily.

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A cockerel, a welsh dragon, a bloody billhook (family story – don’t ask!), a fish, a square for ,mum and dads wedding dad and a long tradition of letter writing. Phew! It’s a marathon writing about them imagine how busy our machines were making them!

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My son was represented by his hand print which only just fitted!

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The swimmer shows how the elements of a design layer up to make the whole picture.

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I am quite proud of this trombone square as I find embroidery rather tedious"!! I found a sketch of a trombonist I liked and copied it over line by line using a fabric marker.

I then backstitched the design in crochet cotton. My disappearing fabric marker kept disappearing too quickly though. It would have been a lot more accurate if I had used ordinary biro or pencil to copy the design. You can see the comparison below.




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I also did some flowers in fabric applique.

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All in all I’m proud of this one due to the sheer time and effort everyone put in. I’d estimate that each square took about 40-60 minutes. I then spent about a day piecing, quilting and binding it – oh and about an hour to work out how to tie a pretty ribbon on the final parcel!!!

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