Introducing 'Sweet Prairie'

The moment I've been waiting for! Dear friends, I am delighted to introduce to you my new fabric collection for Riley Blake Designs, called 'Sweet Prairie'!

This line was inspired by my love for all things floral and also includes two blenders - mini dots and bias ginghams - which work so well to break up all that flowery sweetness. For the colour palette I strived to achieve a happy, vibrant mix of colours featuring pink, mint, sunny yellow, earthy grey, and brick red. I am extremely pleased with it and pre-sales are in full swing already - I hope you like it too!

I've received my first set of strike offs (test batch run by the factory to fine tune the colours) and they are pretty spot on! I've already cut into them to make my April blocks for Fat Quarter Shop's 2017 Patchwork Quilt Along - the pinks and reds work so well with the pink, red and grey quilt I am making for this sew along.

'Sweet Prairie' will be available in shops in the US and Europe in August, and in Australia in September. I will share a list of stockists nearer the time - if you are a shop who will be stocking them please drop me a line to let me know!

Sweetie Pie Sew Along

Have you been following Lori Holt's Sweetie Pie Sew Along? This adorable quilt (featuring Lori's own Sew Cherry 2 fabrics in the picture below) would be such a happy addition to any home! You can download the free quilt pattern here, and Lori has been publishing a series of posts on her blog, literally taking you through the making of this quilt step by step with great photos and lots of tips. To make this quilt you will need Lori's 'Fruit Salad' Sew Simple Shapes (applique templates), and also her Pie Ruler to make the Dresden plates.

This week it's my spot in the Sweetie Pie sew-along, for which I picked the apple block. Instead of making the standard Dresden block, I wanted to demonstrate a different and fun way of using the Fruit Salad templates, so I used my apple template to make a pair of coasters. These templates are so versatile, so why not use them to make other things?

The two green fabrics are 'Apple Farm' by Elea Lutz for Penny Rose Fabrics and the red floral is from Nadra Ridgeway's 'Backyard Roses' for Riley Blake Designs.

To make the coasters I first made a 6" circular base using linen back and front with a layer of wadding in the middle. I then appliqued the apple and leaf shapes (C11 and C5 from the Fruit Salad shapes) using fusible web, and stitched around the perimeter of the apples in black twice, and also did the same to draw the stems and the leaf detailing. Oh and I cut out a chunk off the green apple with scallop edge scissors for a cheeky touch! They were a super quick sew and I'm thinking they will make great teacher gifts. Hope you like them.

These coasters were the very first things I made in my new sewing room, in our beautiful new home. We moved here a week ago and I'm exhausted beyond words with all the unpacking but also so happy we did it - the house is magnificent, and so are the 360 degree country views we get to enjoy, such as this one taken at sunset. The kids are so excited and I'm looking forward to all the happy memories my little family will make here! I will share more pictures with you as soon as it's looking a bit more presentable. Thanks for visiting today!

Lilac Embroidery With Cosmo Floss

Last week we completed settlement for our new home (see my earlier post if you missed my news) so we are now in full sort-out and pack-up mode! My house is a sea of boxes so there is no time to sew, but whenever I get a brief break I escape to my sewing room - as the craft beast inside me demands to be fed! One small thing I managed to finish this week is this little embroidery of a lilac branch. When life is busy, I find working on small projects can be so satisfying and the best way to relieve stress.

This embroidery was inspired by an embroidery pattern I found on Pinterest, I added lots more French knots and lazy daisies, and also changed the leaves. The gorgeous embroidery floss is the new colour palette by Cosmo, and stupidly I forgot to write down the numbers of each skein before packing them away. When I unpack them at the other end I will update this post with the floss numbers so check back next week if you wanted to know.

I hope you enjoyed a little embroidery inspiration today! Right-O - time to get back to packing and stacking! 

Patchwork Quilt Along - Block 3

The third block in Fat Quarter Shop's annual charity quilt-along has just been revealed: it's called 'Box-in-a-box' and the pattern is now available on the FQS blog. In case you missed my first blog post - this is the quilt we are making!

You can either use your own fabrics, or order a quilt kit from Fat Quarter Shop if you would like to make the same quilt as above, featuring Bonnie & Camille Basics fabric.

This quilt along benefits Make-A-Wish. This fantastic organization grants the wishes of children diagnosed with a life-threatening medical condition. The Patchwork quilt blocks are FREE to download on the 15th of every month on the Fat Quarter Shop blog, Jolly Jabber, starting today. We only ask a suggested donation of $5 to the Make-A-Wish campaign for each time you download a block pattern.

My pink, red and grey quilt is progressing well!  For this month's fabrics I used a selection of Bonnie & Camille prints.


I hope you like my blocks! You can also check out the quilts other guest bloggers are making by visiting their blogs, here's the full list:

Amanda from Jedi Craft Girl (@jedicraftgirl)
Amy of Diary of a Quilter (@diaryofaquilter)
Andy of A Bright Corner (@abrightcorner)
Bonnie of Cotton Way (@bonniecottonway)
Camille of Thimble Blossoms (@thimbleblossoms)
Debbie of Happy Little Cottage (@happylittlecottage1)
Greg of Grey Dogwood Studio (@greydogwoodstudio)
Heidi of Buttons and Butterflies (@buttonsandbutterflies)
Melissa of Happy Quilting (@happyquiltingmc)
Melissa of Oh How Sweet (@ohhowsweet)
Pat Sloan of (@quilterpatsloan)
Renee of Sewn with Grace (@sewnwithgrace)
Sedef of Down Grapevine Lane (@downgrapevinelane)
Sherri of A Quilting Life (@aquiltinglife)
Sondra of Out of the Blue Quilts (@sondradavison)
Taunja of Carried Away Quilting (@taunjalynn)
Tina of Emily Ann's Kloset (@emilyannskloset)

If you are inspired and would like to join this quilt along, bookmark the quilt along page on the Fat Quarter Shop blog, and visit on the 15th of each month to download that month's block pattern. Easy peasy! You can share your progress with other quilters  in the Patchwork Facebook group and post your blocks using #patchworkquiltalong on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Enjoy!

Scrappy Project Planner Sew Along

Have you been following the Scrappy Project Planner sew-along hosted by Fat Quarter Shop? This is the final week so if you missed it here's the link to the FQS blog so you can catch up!

This planner was designed by Lori Holt of Bee in My Bonnet and is literally all you need to get your quilty life organised! If you are anything like me you will have several WIPs on the go at any one time, so the project planner section is great to keep on top of it all and make sure nothing gets forgotten about. There is also a weekly planner (for your to-do lists), and 6 exclusive quilt patterns to sew.

I chose the 'Fat Quarter Flirt Quilt' pattern and decided to turn it into a tote bag (mainly because I didn't have enough time to make the full quilt!). Here's Lori's Flirt Quilt - it looks totally scrappy and random but consists of 6 different blocks laid out cleverly to make it look so.

I chose 'Block 3" from the pattern and made six of these for my tote bag. The fabric I used is 'Posy Garden' by Carina Gardner for Riley Blake Designs.

I then laid out the six blocks in two columns and three rows (arranged randomly), and sewed them together to make my bag outer. Then I followed this tutorial to construct the bag. And voila! It was such a quick and satisfying sew!

I'm so very proud of this project not only because I totally love the bag and will be using it every day, but it's also the very first bag I've ever made (not counting pouches). Yes, that's right. For some reason I've been utterly terrified of bags, their construction looks so bewildering but in actual fact it was easy peasy. Truly. I highly recommend the tutorial above if you are new to bags - it's a great introduction.

For the quilting, I used Aurifil Pink 2410 (50 wt), and my favourite fake-FMQ method: using the wavy line stitch on my Janome Horizon. I love that it looks like free motion quilting at first glance but you don't even need to mark any lines - just follow the previous wavy line with the edge of your walking foot. It's super quick.

And here's a page from my planner showing you a sneak peek of a new quilt pattern I will be releasing soon. Pattern testers, please apply within! (my awesome wood watch is from Jord Watches).

Before I go, I wanted to share some exciting news: we just bought a new house! It was totally meant to be - we weren't even looking for a new home - I was driving up this particular road one day and thinking to myself "What an amazing place to live, amongst all the vineyards" and 10 metres down came across this big 'for sale' sign! It was love at first sight for both me and hubby. Set amongst 8 acres, it has a large established fruit orchard, room for chickens and an awesome tree house for the kids, and last but not least I will be getting a bespoke sewing studio built in the garden. So much to do now for the move in a few weeks but we are all super excited about this new chapter in our lives!

Thank you for visiting!

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