Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Floating - A Final Finish for 2015

I did not get many quilts finished this year.  The ongoing saga that is making a La Passacaglia quilt took up much of my time, with finishes being confined to Modern Herringbone (currently on Miss Main Street's bed) and a couple of baby quilts.  But I have one to add to the list, having finished sewing the binding the day after Christmas.

Floating is finished!  Not the best photo - it has been rainy and overcast for days here in NJ so the lighting was poor, my quilt holders (my mom and Miss Main Street) are short so the top sags, and Dillie insisted on being in the picture.  The design is by Cindy Lammon.  The pattern (called Peppermint Float) was included in last year's calendar from That Patchwork Place and Cindy made the variation and provided the instructions on her blog, Hyacinth Quilt Designs.

I liked the diagonal line quilting Cindy used on her quilt so asked my long arm quilter, Karen Thompson, to do the same.  

The blocks are large and went together quickly early this year, and the top was quilted by early summer.  But by then I was heavily into La Passacaglia and did not get around to binding this quilt until last week.

I used a gray on white doodle print for the backing.  The gray color matches the gray in the polka dot sashing and binding.

Floating is 81" square, so a good size but not quite bed size.  In an earlier post, a reader asked if lining up the narrow sashing was difficult.  It isn't really, you just need to pin well and not rush it.

I plan to make another of Cindy Lammon's designs in 2016.  She designs many quilts with the sort of updated traditional look that I am favoring right now.

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Friday, December 18, 2015

Sewing and Fabric Shops in France

If you follow me on Instagram (cathyquiltingonmainstreet), you will have seen travel photos from my recent trip to Paris and Strasbourg, France.  I had a wonderful time!  I won't cover all the travel details, just leave you with some images.  Instead, I'll focus on some discoveries of special interest to quilters.

I made this collage on PicMonkey.

In Strasbourg, I discovered this delightful little store, La Mercerie du Bain aux Plantes (15 rue du Bain aux Plantes in La Petite France area).  The store carried a great assortment of ribbon, the kind I never find here, and if I could have thought up some projects on the spur of the moment, I would have purchased more.

But I'm ready for some Christmas 2016 projects.  Each little snowman card holds two meters of ribbon and I bought 2 meters of the embroidered ric rac.  I plan to use it all in some sort of wall hanging or pillows.

The fabric shops of Paris are concentrated in a few blocks in the Montmartre section, near Sacre Coeur (church with a white dome).  I didn't buy any fabric but had a fun browse.  There were three stores I particularly liked:

  1. Dreyfus, also known as Marche Saint Pierre - had a huge selection of different kinds of fabric, especially for clothing and interior design use.
  2. La Reine - stocks primarily very high quality fabric for clothing.  They had a huge selection of Liberty lawns at 26 euros per meter, as well as nice wools and silks.  
  3. Frou Frou - a more contemporary store with cotton fabric similar to Liberty prints.  What makes the place special is the huge selection of buttons and trims that match the fabric.  It would be great for little projects like bags but a bit pricey for quilting.  There is a second Frou Frou store in the 6th arrondisement at 31 rue Saint Placide.

I also saw quilting fabrics from the usual American firms like Moda and Hoffman, but at prices that make me appreciate my LQS and online sources so much more.  I'm not sure I could afford to quilt if I lived in France!  But wow, the pastries are sure good!

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