These three week cycles seem to come round awfully quick, or is that just a sign of age! Anyway, three weeks ago I had just started my seaside quilt, it’s by the same designer as the cottage garden quilt (Kathryn Whittingham) so I know it’s going to be gorgeous. All the patterns and instructions are in a book of the same name, available from her website, Patchwork Katy.
Last time I had made a couple of star blocks and a star fish…
I prepared some more applique blocks to stitch while we were away in Northumberland. There’s a cute little crab with googly eyes, a fish which I haven’t made the best fabric choice as there’s too many lines so embroidery lines are lost. These are only tiny blocks, 2″ sewn, so you can imagine how little and fiddly they were to cut out! They make lovely centres to friendship star blocks though and the cheeky little crab makes me smile…
I also embroidered a colourful beach hut. Whitby, in North Yorkshire, has a long line of beach huts all painted in bright colours, I’m using a striped fabric instead which makes a nice colourful block. I might try and get a few more stripy fabrics as there’s a few beach huts on the quilt
The beach hut goes in the same group as the star fish, there are some 2.5″ squares to make it into a row. I’ve bought a few seaside themed fabrics so I’m using those for all the little squares.
I feel there should be a few red squares scattered round the quilt too, the one I’ve added in the picture is actually a Christmas one but I don’t think it stands out as Christmassy. This morning I’ve just picked up a bunch of red patterned fat quarters in Hobbycraft, so I’ll see how they look. I’m not stitching all the little squares together until I’ve made all the bigger blocks in the row so I can see how the colours are working.
I’m also taking a lead from Kathryn, the designer, in using floral and general patterns of fabric too, so long as the colours work.
Earlier this week I started preparing two of the larger embroidery blocks for this row. The first one is a boat tied up at a mooring. I decided to do a nice bright red boat.
With these pictorial blocks the background is stitched first, I looked at using a beautiful batik for the sea, it would have been perfect if we lived somewhere that had an azure blue sea, but realistically, even on a beautiful sunny day the North sea isn’t azure! Instead I used a softer blue fabric and a very light blue-grey for the sky.
I cheated slightly with the seagull as there happened to be one exactly the right size on one of my fabrics, so I carefully cut him out and stuck him on with bondaweb, I just need to embroider round him now.
So I haven’t quite finished this block; there’s some bunting hanging off the guy ropes and a dog in the front of the boat. I’m planning to make the dog like Lucy, our elderly bichon frise, so I’ll just outline a dog shape and then fill in with french knots.
I’ve also realised that my mast isn’t central. Luckily I know nothing about boats so if it is nautically incorrect it isn’t going to bother me!
I’ve one more block prepared, it’s just waiting for the embroidery. These are oystercatchers, beautiful striking birds with their black and white feathers. We often see them on the moors too as they have adapted to inland living too. I was really surprised the first time I saw one on the moors, but I see them quite frequently now.
As you can imagine from the photo, this was pretty fiddly to cut out, but it is so effective. I think one of my birds might end up with rather long legs though! I cut out and attached the birds one by one so I didn’t get the pieces mixed up, it was confusing enough with all the rocks, trying to work out what order they went in!
Hopefully in three weeks time I might have the first row stitched.
Hand Quilt Along Links
This Hand Quilt Along is an opportunity for hand quilters and piecers to share and motivate one another. We post every three weeks, to show our progress and encourage one another. If you have a hand quilting project and would like to join our group contact Kathy at the link below.
I’ll also be linking up with Kathy’s Quilts for Slow Stitching Sunday.