Wednesday, 22 August 2007

KTQ (knitter turned quilter)

I'm hiding out over here (away from my knitting blog) in order to make a secret project for my first niece who is due in November. My main craft is knitting but I have done sewing in the past and was really looking for an opportunity to do some again. I wanted whatever I did to be a practical project - I have too many finished cross-stitch projects which are just rolled up in bags because I never got around to framing them - and dress-making seemed a bit scary. I also have a long term aim of being able to make a king size quilt (of the sort that I could never afford to buy) for my bedroom. But first things first.

My First Project

It all started at the Festival of Quilts at the N.E.C. last Saturday. I went with the best of intentions. I would buy only some buttons and beads to jazz up a pair or socks or garnish a sweater.

Initially I did very well, indeed I made it to lunch without spending a bean. I resisted the lovely flowery fabrics and the great 3-D cross-stitched cards (I have a dark and murky cross-stitching past). Alas I finally fell over at the Quilt Room and when I got up again I'd somehow acquired a bundle of 6 fat quarters and a metre of snail and pea pod print fabric by Anna Griffin (who does some truly lovely stuff). To be fair I was in good company as Katie also got a metre of the snail fabric and everyone agreed it was just too cute to pass up.

Snail fabric

Fat quarters

It wasn't actually all the amazing quilts that inspired me to have a go myself, rather one or two simple quilts that made me think "I can probably do this". In particular I saw one quilt which would be perfect for a baby and I started to think about quilting, rather than knitting, a baby blanket for my first niece. I wanted to find fabrics which were cute and suitable for a girl but not overly so and the bundle I picked up at the Quilt Room is just perfect I think.

I'm planning to use the 6 fat quarters to create a top piece measuring about 80 x 100 cm using 24 rectangles (something nice and straightforward to start with). The backing will be the incredibly sweet snail and pea fabric. I may then add some appliqued detail on top of that but I don't need to start planning that until I see how the initial quilting goes.

Rather than cut out my pieces and then try to arrange them I decided (being a newbie quilter) to take digital photos of my fabric and then use Paint to cut and paste scale rectangles into patterns.

Pattern idea 1:

quilt idea 1

Pattern idea 2:

quilt idea 2

Pattern idea 3:

quilt idea 3

I'm so pleased I did this as I felt so nervous about cutting into my fabric. I know I'll feel a lot more confident if I have a clear plan for my quilt before I start.

1 comment:

Kirsty said...

Putting photos into Paint to figure out the layout is genius!
I like pattern 2 best. I do like a quilt with a middle.