Welcome! This is the blog of Wendy Whellum and Legend and Lace Designs

Welcome to the Blog of Wendy Whellum and Legend and Lace

To find out more about Legend and Lace please visit the website http://www.legendandlace.com/

Quilt Gallery

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The Trick.....

.....is getting it done.  Yesterday I had a clean up of my sewing room.  Yay!    Now I can make a new mess.  I needed that table clear so that I could baste my 4 Card Trick Quilt.  I pinned basted it, and did not know if I would hand quilt with Perle cotton and "big stitches" ( I am getting hooked on this!) or machine quilt it.

Machine quilting won!  I need this quilt finished by the end of November.   I know it would look beautiful if I hand quilted it, but reality is I don't have the time.  If I hand quilted this one, even with the big stitches, I would not be able to work on anything else for a whole month.

I am doing pretty basic quilting, in the ditch, around each of the "cards" and probably something in the border.  If I do an hour each day, then I will certainly have it all done in time.

It did look nice for a very short time.  Darn!  next thing I have to tackle the floor.  It is covered in dropped pins, and all the tiny little triangle "ears" cut off the blocks.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

How does your garden grow?

I can't decide if my favourite season is Spring or Autumn.  The gardens are just beautiful this year, and the best the roses have been for years.  I am not a propper gardener, I just plant things and hope for the best.  My grand-father was a great garden, so I have learned a lot from him.  My DH is big on the fertilizer, but he is not aware of the old saying, that sometimes less is best.  He fertilizes too much and the wrong times.

 The hollyhocks are out so early this year, but some of them never actually stopped flowering.  Must have finally got it right.

This red one is my favourite.  I tried for years to grow hollyhocks and they simply died.  I would travel around remote and dry parts of the state, and see them growing wild by the sides of the roads!  Why can't I grow them in that case? 

So I took this attitude.....I  took seeds from these hardy unloved plants, and scattered them about the garden like in nature, scraped them in like the birds do, did not water them - just the rain when we get it, and there you have it!   A thriving hollyhock garden.  All the plants are now self sewn, and they are everywhere!  They pop up in the cracks of the paving, and in the lawn, and sometimes I move them, but not often.  Too much fiddling about and they don't like.  I ignore them and they grow.

 The other thing we "non gardeners" can have success with are climbing roses.  This rose is called Albertine.
 It nearly died the second year I had it with the drought, but now it flowers A LOT in October to November.  The whole fence will be covered in the delicate pink blooms.  They are a bit early this year as well.
 This climbing rose called "Gold Bunny" is less than 2 years old!  and to the top of the fence.  I got it for Mother's Day last year.  The blooms are on long stems, so you can pick them and put them in a vase.
Not sure what the real name of this plant is, but we call it Bird of Paradise.  I have about 3 of them in the garden.  They grow without help and so BIG!  It really does look like a bird, dosn't it?

We went to the nursery today and bought a Blood Orange tree.  It is going into one of the pots on the front verandah.  We have limes and lemons in pots so far, and orange, peach, nectarine, and mandarin trees in the back yard.  If they all survive the summer we should be ok for fruit in the future.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Back to Paradise

 Legend and Lace Blog was temporarily "hijacked".  It is all fixed now.  Sorry if you got re-directed to another site

One of the nice things about writing on a blog from time to time about what I am doing, is that you have a record of start and finish dates and some progress.  Some people keep a diary and detailed notes of things like this.  I am sorry, but I am simply not that organised.  This is Calico Paradise, pattern by Dawn - Collector with a Needle, and according to my blog posts, I started it September 2012.....so only 2 years.  That's not bad, really.....

You may think I am going through my "yellow" phase, a bit like Van Gough, and is "blue period", but I have always loved yellow.  It is the colour of renewal and spring time.  It makes me happy!  Whenever I see a bit of yellow fabric as a fat quarter I buy it!

The centre applique is now complete.  This has been done in phases, but as a whole piece of work.  I had to join the background fabric, but with all the applique, you just can not see the join.  Then I marked the centre, and appliqued that, then the side pieces, and each corner in turn.  It is time for the final borders, and it is actually this border, (and not the remarkable applique centre) that attracted me to the quilt.
Don;t you just love this pink!  It is a rose pink solid from Moda Bella.  The leaves are in green, brown, and cheddar from my collection of solid scraps, then there is a bright blue vine and bit of floral-ly work in the centres of the border, and the corners.

Not long to go now and it will be all finished.  It is nice to get back to something that I just love.  I have to find a new name for it.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Pom Pom Tree block 12.......

The very last of the Pom Pom tree blocks is now on the Legend and Lace website.  This is a funny looking flower/tree....well, I guess they are all funny looking!  It is a little more complex than the previous few, with some of the circles and leaves much smaller.

For anyone who has not seen the quilt before, I made up the pattern from an image of the original quilt.  I had a post about it back HERE.  The pattern is drawn using EQ, which makes it much nicer than using my pen and paper.  They are a digital pattern, and can be downloaded from the website.

Next month I will have the instructions for the zig zag sashing and borders.  Gosh, I hope I remember how I made it :-)   I know there was a fair bit of unpicking involved, but I know where I went wrong with it.

Next thing........I am looking for something new for you, and I was thinking of another free BOM.......something like a sampler, where there is a little bit of applique and a little bit of piecing.......maybe one of each a month, or alternate months.  For example one month is a pieced block, and one month an appliqued block.  I will keep them at 8" again, as they are easily printed onto one single page.  I will try and get "inspired" by leafing through some books.

Any ideas out there??

Saturday, October 11, 2014

It has been 2 weeks since I posted, and I wondered what I had been doing in that time.  I has been school holidays here, so I had my DGD Skylar, for a visit twice.  We had a long weekend in there as well, and I spent the 3 days working at Hettie's Patch stand at the Australian Machine Quilting Festival in Adelaide.  I was doing some "demos" of the Hedgehog Needle Puller while doing hand quilting.  Yes, I know it was a  "Machine" quilting thing, but the hand quilting was a fascination for many people.

I also spent the time getting 2 quilts finished to enter into the Adelaide Quilt show in November.  The baskets and rose blocks are all put together, quilted and bound!
 Many of you have been on this long journey with me, and I am happy to say it is FINISHED!  I chose to do "big stitch" hand quilting on this quilt.  I used a pink perle cotton number 8.  Must say, I am getting a bit hooked on this quilting.  It is so much faster than traditional hand quilting, and suits the situation where you think you might machine quilt it.
 I did parallel lines 1" apart in the border triangles, and 1/4" in the sashing, and straight down 1" apart on the blocks......no outlining, just straight over the top!
I used the same blue fabric for the binding.

Another one finished for the Adelaide show is the "Summertime" quilt I showed you a few months back.  I had this one professionally machine quilted, with an all over Baptist Fan design. and chose a black directional fabric for the binding.
You can see the binding better in this one
 You can see the quilting lines on this one
Some really way out fabrics.  My friends call them "uglies"!
People often ask me about how I choose my fabrics. Not a lot of thought goes into it.  I like to just "wing it", but a little like......I start with the centre fabric, and find something that contrasts with it using the Light/Dark principle, pick out one of the colours from the centre (in this case red) and use that again.  I love directional fabrics and zig zags.
Another one I am working is the 4 Card Trick.  I showed this to you last post, and it is now taking shape.  All the blocks are together, and I had enough "mistakes" to make a scrappy border.  Not sure what I will do after this pieced border, but I am thinking either a red and black border fabric, about the same width as the pieced border.......or just binding in red or black.  I plan to hand quilt this one in variegated perle cotton as well.  I like the way you can set these blocks square, but get an "on point" look about it.

I really want to get back to my applique, but "have to" get these jobs done first.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Catching up and finding free time

I don't know about others, but whenever I finally start to think I am on top of things, I take on something new and get into a tangle again.  I do find that it helps to allocate a certain amount of time each day to a particular project if you have a deadline in mind.

I started making the "4 card trick" about two weeks ago, wanting to have the whole thing completed by the end of November.  There are 20 blocks in the quilt, and I figured I would use each fabric twice, so that is......hmmmm ......40 different fabrics, plus the background.  Somewhere along the line I miscalculated, and ended up with too many small triangles.
and I thought I was going to run out of the background fabric as well.  And now, I am short 2 blocks, so have to find another couple of fabrics.
I don;t usually cut out a whole quilt all at once, but it was that background fabric that was the problem, and I wanted to make sure I had enough.   I do, but I made so many cutting mistakes.  One lot of triangles is
5 1/4" cut into 4, and one lot is 5" cut into 2.....so you know what I did?  I cut out too many of the smaller ones and not enough of the larger.  Eek! 

Each day I picked out groups of 4 different cut fabrics, and laid them on a little design board, and sewed them up.  Once they are all cut it only takes about 20 minutes to sew and press one block.  So far I have managed to get 14 of them done.  I have enough to make another 4, but will have to cut more fabrics for the colours.

I will have left over triangles, so I am thinking of making a boarder using them.  I will see how many left over "mistakes" I have at the end.
 Something different.  I went to the market and found "blood oranges" at one of the stands.  I usually get Seville oranges for marmalade, but thought these would make a great change.  The colour is spectacular.
I had a vision of scarlet coloured marmalade, but they have to be cut down with water and sugar, so it is not nearly so bright.
I got 2 large and 4 small jars from one kilo of fruit.  It tastes beautiful!  I had it on my toast this morning.  It set really well too.  I was a bit worried that as the fruit were so ripe, they would not set, so squeezed a lemon in.  Don't know if that did the trick or not, but they set beautifully as well.

Back to the "ticks"!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Pom Pom Tree - Block 11

We only have one more block after this one, then I will have to work out how I made the sashing and border for this quilt.
This block is one of the more simple of the 12, so you should be able to have it completed in no time.

The next block, number 12, is a little more complex.  I went looking for the file in my computer today, and it looks like I neglected to save it, or saved it is some obscure place, now I can't find it.  So it looks like I will have to do it all over again.  So much for "getting ahead"!

The block 11 is now available on the Legend and Lace website.  It is a digital download pattern for $4.95.  If you use Pay Pal you will get a strange message saying there has been an error  -   ignore that!  Sorry about this, but I can not seem to fix it, and plan to take Pay Pal off the website once these patterns are complete.  You will get a link for the pattern and you can print it off.  Remember that you have 3 days to download, and you have 3 attempts.  If you have a problem, let me know and I can reset it.  Email me Legendandlace@gmail.com.

Talking about things technical, I had a really bad week last week with techno stuff, and was practically pulling my hair out.  I won't bore you with all the details, but my mobile phone SIM was cancelled (not by me!) and I was told it would be 3-5 business days before I had a replacement.  Not happy with that, so I changed carriers, kept the number and  moved on.  When I wanted to email my Wholesale customers to let them know I had a phone problem, I found I could not send out emails.....same company......they had done "something" to my email account.  It is all sorted now, but not before multiple phone calls to the "customer help" centre, which is now in the Phillipines!  All the people employed in their Melbourne office were sacked in May and a new centre opened off shore.

I have tried to keep calm and do some nice sewing, and started a new project.  I am making a 4 Card Trick.

This is a lovely old block., and I am going to "zoom it up" with some good repro fabrics.  This is just the start, then there is a little "reverse" sewing, as you have to be really careful about what fabrics you put next to each other.  So, I got it wrong, by trying to do it fast, but will be better behaved now.  I am figuring on cutting out 4 blocks at a time, that way I can use the same fabrics twice, but spread them about into the blocks.  Should keep me busy for a while.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Have you ever bought a fabric because you just totally love everything about it, then spend the next 3-5 years trying to fit into just about every quilt you make?  Just to find that it is practically impossible to make the best use of it.

This fabric has been one of those buys for me.  I just loved it and could not find a home for it.  I had almost decided to use it on the back of a quilt!  What a waste
This week I finally found a home for it.   One of my magazine editors asked me to turn a collection of blocks into a quilt, and gave me less than 3 weeks in which to do it.  I work well under pressure, and find a deadline very motivational.......so I did it.  I fished out some sashing, and guess what!  This large print finally found a home. 
It is the only time I have matched it up with other fabrics, when it did not try to take over.
 These are 6" friendship blocks from 2012, swapped with people from all over the world.

I am very happy with the result, and so is the editor (The Boss!)  So glad I finally used this beautiful fabric, and I do have some left over.  Will see if I can use it again.

The quilting is pretty basic to say the least!  In the ditch around the blocks and the sashing, and across the blocks.  Will probably follow the line on the printed fabric on the border.  All on the machine!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Spring Vase

I rarely buy fabric with a specific project in mind.  And that goes for this one above.  I usually buy a few metres of a border type fabric, or a metre or fat quarter, depending on how much I like it.  This fabric I bought 4 metre.  Most of my projects are scrappy and kind of evolve from what I have in the cupboard at the time.

This beautiful directional print from RJR Fabrics, Fairhaven range, was in the disccounted section of Quiltsmith, when I went there in July, after my visit to the Sydney Quilt Show.  My dear friend Maureen took me for a very interesting drive to get there and back.  The date on the fabric is 2009, so I guess they had it laying about for a while and decided to "move it on".....right into my ever appreciative arms!  Thank you very much!
It has a beautiful print right through the blue stripe, which is not noticed at first.
 I decided to use these blue parts of the print, as they were exactly the width I needed.  See my calculator in the photo?  It is there all the time.  The blue part is exactly 4 1/2" wide which includes a lttle bit of the cream background, and that will go into the seams.
Then we are left with something that looks like this.  Wasted?  no way, there is method in my madness
These pieces are totally perfect for fussy cutting for Broderie Perse.....whether it be in this current project or in another.  I can see a whole border with this cut out and appliqued in place, but one thing at a time :-)
These blue strips are going around the central vase for my latest hand appliqued project.  I do not work with blue very often, but the blue in the vase is a favourite of mine, and there are blue leaves in the  surrounding chintz print.  These pieces are just laid in place right now, but I plan to mitre the corners, and get it all nice and neat.

The size after they are added will be 36 1/2", and the blocks I am addeing for the next border are 6" finished, so it *should* all fit together nicely.  Always with a quilt like this you have the option to make the borders a little wider or narrower if it does not work out the first time.  I have done that many times!  but this time I think it will work ok.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Karen Kay Buckley Perfect Square

 Love it when boxes arrive at my home/office.  I knew this one was on the way, but it is still exciting to open up.

10 lovely little boxes, with Karen Kay Buckley's new Perfect Adjustable Squares.  Karen has been working on this idea for some time, and it has finally happened for her.

The packaging is beautiful, with a pull out tray the store the squares for future use

This is what you find inside  - all these little bits of a puzzle, that you can join together in any size you need to enable you to square off blocks from 4" to 24 1/2".  You can use the centre like a window, to help with fussy cutting.

I was going to do this whole blog on how to use it, but Karen has done that for us.  Click on this link for the Youtube video.  She shows how it all works.

Price is $AU89.95, plus postage.  The bad news is that it is quite heavy, about 1 kilo with packaging, so the post will be around $14 in Australia.  For the first 10 customers, I will cover the cost of the postage within Australia.  Available now on the Legend and Lace Website

I also I now have a large supply of Karen's  new Perfect Pins
I have never before worked with a pin that is this thin.  It is very, very skinny and very sharp.  You can see the size in the photograph.  Because the head on these pins is so small I find that I like to spill the pins onto a piece of felt, making it easier to pick them up. There are 50 pins in each little plastic tube.  The cost is $AU9.90

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Winter Workshop update

Those of you who are "regulars" at our workshops, know that we have a great day.  Lots of nice people, good food, and plenty of sewing time.  This year we tried something different and offered a Come and Try......kind of idea where we had 4 different blocks to try some people did all 4, others just one. 

This photo is of one of the Pinwheel quilt based on Mary's blocks.  They are made from 2 1/2" strips, and you can use a Jelly roll or just cut off strips from your scraps.  The black and white on lime looks so fresh!
 Another one with Batics, on a black background.  Love this one too!
This is the "original".....Mary's crisp blue and white pinwheel quilt
 The Abacus looks great in this colour group.  Another black and white print on orange background
I think I would like to try this colour combo myself!
 Julie M was pretty traditional with this beautiful blue and white quilt.  All finished on the day.
Again, this is Mary's original - grey and white, with the yellow background.  She is busy quilting it now.
 These are the other two blocks we had on that day.  The Criss-Cross is based on a Wrench block, and it is the placement of the fabrics that makes it look like this woven cross over and under.

A very simple block to make
Finally, the double wedding ring.  This one is a bit of a challenge!  There were a few harsh words said from time to time, but take it easy, and follow the instructions, and it all works out well. 

This block, and the Abacus, were made with the Quick Curved Ruler from Sew Kind of Wonderful.

If you would like Mary and me to come to your quilting group, with a similar workshop idea, please let me know by email.  We are already making bookings for next year!

Talking on future bookings, we have our next workshop on 4th November, Melbourne Cup Day.  It is a Mystery Quilt ?????????????? with fabrics from your stash. Put this in your diary, with further details to come.  You can book now if you wish.  Once again, it will be held at St Paul's :Lutheran church hall in McLaren Vale, South Australia.