Saturday, 20 July 2013

New York: Duvet Cover for Brooklyn

This duvet cover was designed by Pema, and I finished it in time for putting it in our luggage from Bangkok to Seattle for the summer, and by post office from Seattle to Brooklyn.

Red Crumbs for the Bay Area

Andree, my niece and Maurice have done a beautiful job of renovating their residence, a Tudor house in Oakland, and thought this red crumbs quilts would remind them of the bits of wood, metal, concrete, etc. that they generated while fixing the house!

New York: Squares for Brooklyn

5 percent of the squares were "leftovers" from other projects, and the rest inspired by a quilt designed by Kaffe Fassett, an American who lives in the UK and known for his quilt and knitting work.

New York: Rooster for Brooklyn

This is the second rooster I have made, and re-lived as a wall hanging.

Saturday, 15 June 2013

Metro Manila: One of the Multicolor Abstracts

Work in progress, being completed by the girls. The tops are all assembled by hand stitching.

Friday, 14 June 2013

Metro Manila: the girls at work on their blocks

Sewing boxes being prepared from used grocery cartons, fabric, buttons, and a lot of imagination.  One of the girls made two tiny teddy bears from felt scraps in lieu of two buttons to fasten the lid!  And a fastener-less bracelet, reincarnated as embellishment.

Imagine my surprise when I found two fat bags of fabric scraps ready for sorting, and lots of yardage purchased from Taytay, the textile center of Metro Manila.

Metro Manila: ECPAT Quilt Training: 6-22 May 2013

Funding was made available!
The pockets of the Consular Club of the Philippines made it possible for the training to take place.I am so glad that Amihan is a quilt enthusiast too, and has done a lot of follow-up with block making and assembly with the girls.  And she knows where to get batting!

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Kathmandu: "Many Threads" book about Quilts for Kids Nepal

The book was launched by James Hopkins on 16th March at the Maya Restaurant in Boudha, Kathmandu.  The launch, plus dinner and concert was attended by over fifty friends of James, preceded by a Punjabi concert with Anza-ji, husband of one of the quilters.  All in all, a very joyous occasion, with some book and quilt sales made!

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Kathmandu: Double Star medallion


This "third  chapter" of Quilts for Kids Nepal will involve medallion quilts where a central figure is surrounded by geometric figures and then strips are added to fit into the 80 x 100 inch finished size.  The Double Star design has only two templates, a diamond and triangle.  There are 8 diamonds in the center, and surrounded by a set of 8 red, then 16 red diamonds, all of the same size, with the triangles stitched in to make a square.

The two other "chapters":  the first one, being 12 designs of "Fancy Quilts", the second chapter being 8 designs of "Dharma Quilts" and a set of crazy quilts which the women say are not crazy but "Happy Quilts"

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Kathmandu: "Cube"

This is where geometry comes in handy when designing a cube form.  I made various models made of  newspaper and magazine (for colours) sheets for the parts, before I was satisfied with the effect of using various shades of red, yellow, neutral  and white against a black background.  There are only two triangle templates for the sides which add up to a diamond with all the four sides being equal is size.  The strips were added when the three diamonds were finished:  just measure the lengths and cut the selected three fabric strips.  The traditional quilt block is known as "Tumbling Block".  Karama calls it the "Box".

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Kathmandu: "Many Squares" medallion quilt

This is another design for Quilts for Kids Nepal, with a central figure made up of triangles and squares.  I did not "correct" the rectangle shapes along the borders (these should be squares) to show the importance of measuring the border first before cutting/ stitching the border parts.

I don't have a photo of Jeet's quilt using this design, but it turned out to be stunningly great, and my fave for this training trip.  Instead of using squares for borders, we used hourglass blocks to practice on the quarter-square method , and turned out very well indeed. Jeet was married at fifteen, and currently nurses her fourth boy.  Her sister had three daughters so she adopted one of them.  She has the best top-stitching skills in the group, with even, small and regular quilt stitches, and neat piecing.

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Bangkok. This is Scottie

"Scottie" is a square and special quilt, for Seth's 2012 quilt and will soon be transported from Bangkok to his home in Chiang Mai by his mom, Barbara Franklin, a long-standing friend.  Seth had a long and complicated operation in the USA recently, around his jaw and tongue area.

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Mekong Quilts partner in Bangkok

The Vasitta Quilts Shop and Showroom opened in December 2012.  It is located at the 3rd level of Rain Hill Mall, Sukhumvit 47 between Prompong and Thonglor BTS stations.  A privately-owned business, it has partnered with Mekong Quilts, as a prime supplier. 

Their website describes further the shop’s contents and photos of Mekong Quilts.  The shop is also a center for custom-made quilts, from customer designs or from the current line of designs:

Monday, 4 February 2013

Lusaka: Mundawanga

Here are two views of a quilt titled MUNDAWANGA, which is the name of the zoo just outside Lusaka in Zambia, our residence for four years.  We used their playground to take Pema and her friends to use the swings and other kid facilities.  It is on the road going to all points south including Chirundu, the border with Zimbabwe, and also to Victoria Falls at Livingstone town. 
I had wished to make an African-inspired quilt for a long time now, and have just finished  binding this one, and soon to be washed.

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Bangkok: Stars on my sofa

The blocks started off as an all- star bed cover project, but took the UFO route.  The sofa needed a color boost, so the project took another turn and was made into a cover.

Kathmandu: Eight auspicious symbols

My difficulty was trying to simplify as much as possible for the purpose of hand-stitching, the intricate patterns found in these symbols as they are depicted as wood carving and fabric embellishments in Buddhist temples.  Eight quilts were sold to a Buddhist retreat and meditation house just outside Kathmandu.  March/April 2012

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Bangkok: Crumbs - 360

When using a sewing machine to piece blocks together, it helps to have handy, small pieces of fabric that you can use as a "Leader".  Why?   Because when you start to sew, the fabric is sometimes pushed into the inside of the machine, and causes the beginning of the pieces to be crumpled.  And if you do not notice it at first, it pulls your needle and thread into the bobbin then you are in trouble:  you snip and snip and remove the culprits, then start all over again.   

Well, by having a boxful of small scraps (called “crumbs” in quilting language), you can start by piecing two small pieces together, then feed in the beginning of your block piecing, do a few chain piecing (by not snipping the thread after two pieces are sewn together but continue feeding your two til the “end”), then use another two pieces of scrap as your “Ender”.  This “Ender” is not snipped off from the machine, as it will be your “Leader” for the next batch of chain piecing that you do.

I have used this method for a good while now, using whatever crumbs I have handy and they come in all colors and shapes.  I cut out a tapered newspaper template so that the completed circle will measure about 55 inches in diameter.  It was a case of cutting-piecing-measuring til I got the number of tapered pieces and the circle right.  There was a big round hole in the center, but never mind:  a round piece appliqu├ęd covered the hole.

I have yet to decide how to do the corner pieces so that the finished quilt comes out square:  I will let it stew for a while til I get a smart idea to make it work!  Or maybe I will quilt and bind it as a round piece.

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Bangkok: Kids' quilts for the orphanage

At last, I have finished five kids' quilts, ready for shipping to the refugee camp's orphanage.  It took a while, but it is such a great feeling to do the final washing.  There are others in various stages of progress, and will depend on how fast I can do piecing for the backing.  Some are embellished with four inch paper pieced blocks I was experimenting with until it was a boxful and became more than ready to add spice to the quilts!