Foundation paper piecing

As I’m working on a large quilt project at the moment I thought I’d do a bit of experimenting with foundation paper piecing to give me a break from the the what feels like endless Half Square Triangle cutting and piecing!

I copied this simple design, watched a couple of YouTube videos and I was away.

I made the rookie error of not checking that the fabric was large enough to cover the space so I just added another section to cover the gap:

I really enjoyed this and can see a lot of potential in the technique. As I didn’t want yet another random piece of fabric around me I took the opportunity to try out some different free motion stitch patterns. I’m now using it as a coaster on my work desk, it adds a nice splash of colour to my environment and if I’m having a long day it makes me look forward to getting home and doing some more stitching!



I started making this quilt when I was about 4 months pregnant and when I did the last run on the machine of the border edging a week before my due date I told her she could arrive anytime now as I’d finished her quilt! 

I used fabric from my stash for this quilt and I didn’t really have a design in mind when I started out. The hexagons were made up on my commute and I played around with various layouts before I settled on this design. I picked the hexagons out from a bag lucky dip style and arranged them that way. As the fabric was floral I thought I’d quilt leaf like vines, this was a lovely pattern to stitch, I find quilting is so meditative once I  get the rhythm right – woman and machine became one with just the sound of the needle chugging away…

I don’t intend posting many photos of my girl but this pic of her snuggled under the quilt makes me chuckle every time I see it. she was a couple of months old here and I used to call her the pixie faced sleep thief during this period, Aah those crazy sleep deprived days! I’ve started cutting up her outgrown clothes for a new quilt but that i think that will be some time coming! 

Enter the Dragon – Exit Johnny Clarke



‘Kung Fu International’ by John Cooper Clarke keeps popping into my head while I’m working on my dragon quilt – he’s one of my favourite poets and I’ve my Uncle Vince to thank for introducing me to him when I was about 10, Vince was cool and lived in London and he used to make my Mum mix tapes of all he’d been listening to, he still sends me music 30 years later but it’s on CD rather than cassette these days but I’m getting sidetracked… I’m really enjoying working on this quilt, I love the growing solidity of the layers as they’re stitched together and there’s been something meditative in following the bold outlines of the batik with just the sound of the machine chugging away.

I’ve finished all of the gold outline of the dragon and I’m really pleases with how the stitching appears on the reverse – here’s the face of the dragon and a chunk of the body:



I’m wanting to do further stitching on the body to introduce more colour to the reverse and to create more detail and texture on the quilt top so I spent an hour on Sunday doing some sample stitching on some scrap fabric:



I think I’ll go for the green scales on the body and just lines on the yellow underbelly – I thought about doing a pebble stitch here but seeing it next to the scales I thought the patterns looked too similar and busy so simple curved lines it is.

I’ve also to think how I’m going to fill the background too but for now I’ll leave you with a bit of John Cooper Clarke