zaterdag 28 juni 2014

Big boys don't cry

And mine didn't even fall of his bike once when he tried it without training wheels the first time. I was totally amazed! He was such a proud little man. Breaking however is no his strong point, so we have to practice that some more!

We had a lovely weekend just the four of us in the sun enjoying the little things.

And some fabric arrived, from veritas and "de stoffenkraam"

Some "Stenzo" blenders

And look at those boats, perfect for the boat beach quilt!

See you soon!

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woensdag 25 juni 2014

everything changes but you - a comfort circle finish

For some reason this song has been in my head all day. And I don't even think it is true! Maybe it is because One Direction is in the country and I am reliving my own boy band crushes in the nineties...What a great time we had! Who was your favorite one? I was definitely all for Take That!

On another note I can show you the second finished quilt of my January round in the comfort circle. The Starry Scrappy night sequel! This time I quilted it with a diagonal crossing lines in a funky lime green. Backed it with a fabric once meant for a duvet cover and bound it with left over texty fabric from Ikea (my new go to backing). I'm in love with this quilt all over again and I would recommend using your scraps on a quilt like this one. Are you ready?

I will donate this one soon! And I can start looking forward to putting my boaty beachy quilt together, since this one is now officially of the list!

See you soon!

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zaterdag 21 juni 2014

Like mother like son - you've gotta love the next generation

He asked me a million times already. And I gave in. He wanted to make a blanket for "pop". Pop is dutch for puppet. It's his comfort and sleeping softie. Very worn and old, since my son is seven now and he hasn't slept one night without it in his life.

Not knowing if he would go through with it when I had said yes, I gave him a task to pick out fabrics and "design" this tiny blanket. He of course went straight to my favorite and most expensive fabrics, some of them I could dissuade him from using, but he was very insistent on his choices otherwise. So we cut 4 rectangles together and he sewed them together without sewing through his hand... We ironed together, picked some leftover batting and a backing. Ironed and pinned, really went through the whole process! He even stitched on a little leftover binding and used lots of embroidery stitches for the quilting. We even made a little pillow to go with it.  And he loved doing it, I'm a proud mama.

 And after that we went to my sisters to meet my parents for fathers day and he knitted a little with my mom.

In my mom's generations and mine boundaries about what boys and girls should like slowly faded. I love that my kid can grow up doing what he likes and is not restrained by boundaries of any kind. 

See you soon!
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dinsdag 17 juni 2014

Boat beach quilt

For my next turn in the comfort circle (july) I already pitched my idea, so everyone can make my blocks in their own time. I've decided, in the random samplerish mood I am, to not choose a block for everyone to make, but decided to let things emerge from our own creativeness. My instruction to my bee mates was this:

Maybe you know I donate my quilts to the salvation army who run a temporary foster home in my neighbourhood. Kids are placed there for observation away form their homes and families. Sometimes they can go back home after some time, sometimes they go to foster homes after that. Most of the quilts we make seem to be more suitable for girls than for boys. So I would like to make a boys version this time. 

And I thought about a boat/beach/sailing kind of theme, leaving everyone free to make 1 block in this theme and some "fillers" to go with them. 

Fillers could be a row of flying geese, some economy blocks, friendship stars, hourglasses, half square triangles, or maybe just some fabric strips for a border.

The block could be a traditional or paperpieced boat (there can be many boats for the boys), lighthouse, seastar, seahorse, seagull/bird. Many patterns can be found when googeling. And mind you, the blocks can be any size. I would love to improvise this quilt together in a random sampler kind of way. Lotje has a great example of what I mean by a random sampler on her blog. Let's use our imagination and feel free of restrictions.

The colors would be boyish and sailing related, so mainly blues (all kinds) beige ore sandy colors, yellows (sun), whites, maybe a touch of bright red (a flag?) to give it some sparkle, or a little green (a tree). 

What do you all think, could this work? Or would you rather I choose a nice block tutorial, because I can do that too? But I thought maybe for a little break? Please let me know what you think. 


I've started to pin about for some inspiration 

And without having made a block myself (which is traditionally what you do to give an example and an idea of the colors and pattern you've chosen), all these wonderfull blocks started to pop up on Flickr and Instagram! Within hours, okay maybe days, of me posting this!

And today, (still weeks from the start of july, let alone the end of it) I have this to show from my mailbox:

This is not how I will lay out the quilt, I have no iead how to do that yet, but to get an idea how everything will fit together.The anchor and the geese are from Muriel, the little folded paper boats and the fabric strips from Marianna in Spain. The bright blocks are signaling flags you use when sailing and signify letters (I am told), such a great idea from Francis Paul (Alphenquilts). She also made the lovely sailboats! 
The lighthouse in the night is my addition. I decided to wait with making something else, so I can see what is missing in terms of space, themes and colors when I have received all the blocks. Is do have in mind to add some of my beachhouses fabric later on.

This will make a great quilt!

See you soon!Pin It

vrijdag 13 juni 2014

Double Dutch Random Sampler - a dutch windmill block tutorial

Hi everyone, It is my turn to show you a block you could add to your double dutch random sampler! This is the third block we are doing.

If this is new to you we will start with some introductions:
- you can find the announcement of the Double Dutch Random Sampler QAL here at Lotjes blog.
- you can find the tutorial for the first block here on her blog.
- you can find the tutorial for the second block on Muriel's blog here
- you can find our dutch modern quilting group "double dutch" on Flickr here
- and you can join the QAL on Flickr here

Pfff, that was a lot of information I'm sure, but it's nice to have it summed up in one place.

Now for my journey on choosing a block. I am not good at making blocks up, I almost never do it and if I do, explaining how to make it to someone else who is not sitting next to me is even more difficult. So I decided to keep it simple. Like Nigella Lawson says in everyone of her cooking books: Please don't make a new and complex recipe when you are getting company. Instead make something simple that you did before, so you can still enjoy the evening.

We agreed on varying the sizes of the blocks within the boundaries of 3-6-9-12 inch. The first 2 blocks measure six inch. So I made the blocks in a nine inch size, but I have added the measurements for making it 6 inch (finished) or 12 inch (finished). So you can make it a size you like, or multiple sizes, which will have a nice effect in the sampler I think.

My inspiration was a block I made in the Farmer's Wife Quilt Along called Box. Like a lot of blocks in this quilt I really don't get this name. What has this block got to do with a box? It reminds me of a dutch windmill, so I thought it appropriate for this quilt-along.

You will need two contrasting fabrics. And cut them up:
  • For a nine inch finished block cut (this is the one I made): 
    • color 1: 4 squares of 3 7/8 (you can cut them 4 inch too and trim later if you prefer) and 1 of  3 1/2 inch.
    • color 2 (background): 4 squares of 3 7/8 (you can cut them 4 inch too and trim later if you prefer)
  • For a six inch finished block cut: 
    • color 1: 4 squares of 3 3/8 (you can cut them 3,5 inch too and trim later if you prefer) and 1 of  2 1/2 inch.
    • color 2 (background): 4 squares of 3 3/8 (you can cut them 3,5 inch too and trim later if you prefer)
  • For a twelve inch finished block cut: 
    • color 1: 4 squares of 5 3/8 (you can cut them 5,5 inch too and trim later if you prefer) and 1 of  4 1/2 inch.
    • color 2 (background): 4 squares of 5 3/8 (you can cut them 5,5 inch too and trim later if you prefer)

Step 1:
Match the 4 squares of both fabrics in sets of two (right sides together) and make HST's (half square triangles) of them. For less experienced sewers; there are lots of lovely tutorials out there. I will try to give a comprehensible explanation and show some pictures: 

You draw a diagonal line on the squares and sew a scant 1/4 inch of each side of the line. When  finished, cut along the line to seperate two triangles. Fold them open, press open and cut it to size (when you are making the nine inch block: 3 1/2 inch). A lovely "cutting to size" tutorial for HST's, you can find here

Some pictures to show what I mean:

Step 2:
Lay out your squares to form the block:

Sew the squares into rows and the rows into a block!

But just to inspire you can choose other layouts as well:

I hope you like it! If you have any questions please let me know!
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maandag 9 juni 2014

sunny days

We are having some lovely, though unpredictable weather in the Netherlands. We spent yesterday at the beach and enjoyed ourselves so much, swimming, lying around, just being. who doesn't want to be here.

For the comfort circle I'm queen bee in July but already posted my idea to make a boat/beach themed random sampler-ish quilt for a little boy. I've asked for blues, beiges, yellows with some pops of color, adding no furthers rules. Everyone makes what they want, how big they want it, etc. This leads to so much creativity in my bee-mates, it is truly incredible. Take a peek here for previews. And I haven't even a plan for my own blocks! So I was looking for some inspiration at the beach too, and I'm thinking of a lighthouse. I do need to figure out how to make one though...

I did make the june block for the sugar block club, called "Teach" this month. Which is in a way appropriate, since I am almost up for my turn in the Double Dutch Random Sampler and am thinking up a little tutorial for a simple block. I love the block:

I have also made two blocks for the random sampler, using Muriels tutorial you can find here. It is a lovely block called Diamond in a cross. You can join us in making a sampler in your own time, you can find us here on flickr. I think I will post my block with a small tutorial next weekend.

See you soon!

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woensdag 4 juni 2014

La douce France!

La vie est belle en France. I spent a long weekend in the south of France with two of my great friends. No husbands, no children. It was pure bliss. The weather was wonderfull, we bathed in the sun, reading books. We drank wine, ate lovely french things, played a little card game on the porch with the sinking sun in view. We shopped and visited lovely picturesque farmer's markets in small villages.

It was so odd to think just for yourself in those few days and not much more than an hour ahead. What do I want to do is a question working moms don't get to ask themselves very often. So I am truly thankful to my Alexander and my boys who let me go and enjoyed a boys weekend and to my parents who gave us such a lovely home away from home in France, where I can go to be nothing but myself for just a couple of days.

I missed my boys of course and being home again is a gift too.

Nothing much to show you in terms of sewing though. But I can show some of my new french treasures.

1 euro per meter backings

Lovely fabrics from my favorite shop in Uzes Provence

And I found these in a booth on the farmers market
Now I've said hello I can go sew something,

see you soon!

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