Sunday 30 March 2014

Soy Amado No. 15

No. 15 is bright and bold and beautiful.

I was particularly touched with one of the blocks I received from Sheila  who clearly has better machine embroidery skills than me.

It completely makes the quilt for me.

Thank you very much Sheila.

Oh look, a bit more upside down text fabric.

And the front again.

Because I love it so.

Friday 28 March 2014

Soy Amado No. 14

I love it when people use stamps, not least because it sheds a little personality on their country.
My memories of reading the Moomin books as a child came flooding back when this parcel of blocks arrived from Finland.

What can I tell you about number 14?

Well for a start, it contains some blocks from Emma who is Brianthemessiah (I'd like to know why) on Instagram.

Look how tiny and perfect those triangles are.

Just beautiful.

I just like how it is a mix of the modern and traditional but it all seems to gel together.

I think it helps if you then use the same coloured sashing to bring it all together.

It feels like an homogenous mesh of everyone's best intentions.

And I like that thought.

Tuesday 25 March 2014

The {pretty} behemoth

In the midst of all my soy amadoing  a friend celebrated a birthday with an '0' on the end and I asked for present ideas.

She said she'd like a quilt which is always a compliment because then you realise people quite like what you do for a hobby.

In my head I was thinking a lap sized quilt and then she uttered the immortal words 'Super King size.'

My head was saying 'you've got to be kidding' but my mouth said 'fine, no problem.'

She provided me with colour ideas and some quilt patterns she liked.

I ignored the patterns, took note of the colours and decided the only way I was going to get this done was QAYG improv log cabin blocks.

So off I set.

Somewhere into this process, I realised I'd been a little too enthusiastic cutting out fabric strips and came to the bonkers decision that I would improv log cabin the back of each quilt to get a true double-sided Super King size quilt.

When it came time to assembling the rows there was a bit of quilt wrestling going on as it got heavier and heavier but nothing compared to what it would have been like if I'd tried to man-handle the whole thing through my machine's small harp space.

I quilted each block with a variegated thread with the No.4 stitch on my Bernina with a long stitch length, which gives the effect of wavy lines.

It's absolutely impossible to photograph all in one go, especially with no unpaid quilt holders on hand.

Even my go to washing line prop doesn't really work as it's pegged round to the next row on the right.
I can safely say I've never made anything this big before.

And I can safely say I won't be making another one again!

Monday 24 March 2014

Soy Amado No. 13

Even though there is no row 13 on airplanes or no floor 13 in hotels, I'm going to buck that thinking and bring you lucky no. 13 Soy Amado quilt.

I think this one is so light and airy and it says 'girl' to me.

By this time in my production line process, I've mastered the little known art of getting directional fabric completely this, that and the other way around.

I know there have been comments about how fast I am doing this but really, I'm not.  I've timed myself and I think it takes between 2 1/2 and 3 hours to complete each quilt.

Which I manage to achieve in short bursts of half an hour or so, an hour if I'm lucky.

But there are lots of little spare moments I've used, taking the two flights of stairs up to my sewing room to get a bit of sewing in when I can.

And then popping down the two flights of stairs to re-enter normal life.

Trailing bits of thread behind me.


But the end results are definitely worth it.

Sunday 23 March 2014

Soy Amado No. 12

And I also started putting obviously 'blue for a boy' type blocks to one side as they arrived which has resulted in No. 12

It's a real hodge podge of different styles from different people but it all seems to work.

I love some of the touches on the individual blocks like the spider web quilting on this Spiderman one. Thank you Kathy.

And how about the oh-so-true sentiment in this one.

The back looks like this, with it's one random and unintentional on my part, pink block.

And let's end with another one of the front.

Oh, and remember the fantastic 29 blocks which Karen sent and many of which I incorporated into No.8?
She's blogging again, so please take a peek here.

Friday 21 March 2014

Soy Amado No. 11

Get your sunglasses on.

I started to take out the pink blocks that were arriving and put them to one side until I had enough for a little girl's quilt.

The quilt is made up of blocks from around a half a dozen different quilters and really is this bright and cheerful- I haven't touched the colours up on my computer at all.

And the back this time - complete with one of the blocks with words on upside down just because I seem completely incapable of getting everything the right way up.

And a vague attempt at a final artistic shot.

Big thank you to everyone sending blocks in. I've kind of lost the plot on emailing people individually to let them know their blocks have arrived so hopefully you are popping in here from time to time and are seeing them appear in the quilts.

Thank you.

Wednesday 19 March 2014

Soy Amado No. 10

And we're now in to double figures with a fabric mule quilt.

This gorgeous central block (four blocks worth in size) was generously donated by Jo(anne) along with several other blocks thank you.

When she first posted it on Flickr I said it was a true Mexican pinata donkey.

I've been asked by several people if I'm still putting 'Soy Amado/a' on the quilts and for the most part I am. I ran out of the fusible paper stuff and so Plan B has been to rather amateurishly machine stitch the words instead.

And the back.

And finally, some up close and personal ones.

Oh, and I heard another batch of quilts were delivered to the home today :-)

Monday 17 March 2014

Soy Amado No. 9

Hugely in love with this one.

ALL the blocks AND the binding were very generously sent by Maryse and are just truly scrumptious. The blocks were the perfect size, all matching up beautifully and I didn't even check if  the binding was going to be long enough - I just knew it would - so off I went. I was enjoying this quilt so much I hand sewed the binding down...before adding a line of machine quilting to be doubly secure.

The quilt has a bit of a Denyse Schmidt thing going on, so literally all I did was use the same mustard fabric Maryse has used in some of the blocks and used it as the joining sashing for both back and front.

I LOVE the simplicity of the back.

Have since restitched the top horizontal line on the right where I missed a bit - fear not!

Can I give you some more gratuitous shots?

And an arty farty one to keep the 'Photographer's Assistant age 11 but everso close to being 12' happy.

Friday 14 March 2014

Soy Amado No. 8

This one is most definitely for a girl so it's a 'Soy Amada' quilt.

The majority of the blocks in this quilt were sent to me by Karen in the UK who is not blogging at the moment and should :-) She was the first person to respond to my 'Pay It Forward' post in October last year so I am aware the clock is ticking on the designated 12 month time span and I really should (and will!) make and send her something.

She made 29 blocks over the course of six weeks at weekends and evenings and then they appeared on my doorstep.

If you look at the half-square triangles and realise that the whole completed block is finished to 12", you can appreciate how each of those HSTs are soooo small and perfect.

Plus, because most of the blocks in this quilt were made by the same person, they are all a perfect 12 1/2" and therefore the joining sashing I add in between each block lines up perfectly. I haven't been measuring the blocks as they've come in, just sewn them together. As a consequence, I've had pedal to to metal on a couple of occasions and then suddenly realised my sashing lines were not meeting up, got my tape measure out and discovered one of the blocks is 12 inches. I have no intention of unpicking so I have perfected the art of squooshing and squeezing the blocks to make them fit but I'd rather not.

Polite request please - blocks should be 12 and a HALF inches pretty please :-) Thank you.

And for the record, the rear.

According to my 11 year old, I need to get more creative with my quilt photography, so the next two are courtesy of her.

Tuesday 11 March 2014

Come with me...

...on a little global journey.

If you made QAYG blocks for me, the quilts I made them into, took a journey to the Netherlands. If you made whole quilts, they flew directly to the Netherlands. I know some of you thought that was a convoluted journey but it is the most secure.

Then they all joined up together and flew to Mexico City and landed here.

In the office of the man who has devoted most of his working life (in between holding down a  job elsewhere) to helping some of Mexico City's thousands of street children.

Sixteen quilts on this first journey.

Here he is with some the children as well as one of the lovely ladies who helped deliver the quilts.

He's part of the reason I started this. Sitting in that room listening to him talk about the home and watching him at one point becoming quite overwhelmed and emotional with what he is doing, I sat there feeling I should do more but I didn't know what to do.

And we walked around and looked at the facilities the children have.

This is their recreational yard.

And while they have the opportunity to learn, it is very rudimentary.

So they do have the basics. But that is just it.


And I suppose I thought it would be nice if we could raise them above 'basic' to 'nice.'

So that you could take a room like this.

Yes I know, EXTREMELY cute child and another reason I wanted to do something

And make it like this.

So that each child has at least something special.

I know we're not talking a cure for cancer here.

But in my/our small way it feels like we are making a difference.

There are lots of people to thank and these people are just the tip of the iceberg.

Thank you for supporting me with quilts and quilt blocks.
Thank you to everyone involved in the organisation and transportation of the quilts.
Thank you for all the offers that have been made.

And as long as you keep sending me quilt blocks, I'll keep turning them into little bits of quilty love.

Thank you.


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