Island Batik January Challenge…

As some of you may know I am slowly moving everything over to my new website and blog, please head over to see my latest post as an Island Batik Ambassador

www.creativeblondegifts.com

Please come and join me on the other side… 🙂

www.creativeblondegifts.com

hit the follow button and take a look round my new shop/website, share with family and friends

Wishing you a fabulous weekend ahead

Michelle

Island Batik December challenge…

Welcome to my last challenge of the year as an Island Batik ambassador 2021

This months challenge is all about English Paper Piecing

'ENGLISH PAPER PIECING CHALLENGE ISLAND BATIK AMBASSADORS'

WHAT IS ENGLISH PAPER PIECING?

English Paper Piecing (commonly called EPP) is a method of stabilizing fabric around a heavy paper shape before sewing the pieces together to create intricately pieced designs. It provides excellent accuracy and precision piecing. English Paper Piecing originated in England and was called Mosaic or honeycomb patchwork. In the late 1700’s, when all things English became popular in the U.S., the term English Paper Piecing was coined. The most popular shape has always been the hexagon because it makes good use of fabric scrap and is easy to assemble. The most recognizable hexagon pattern is Grandmother’s Flower Garden, which became popular in the 1920-1930s.

HAND SEWING

English Paper Piecing is often referred to as Hand Piecing or hand sewing and is a traditional sewing method that utilizes a running stitch to sew fabric pieces together. The hand sewer sews a ¼” seam allowance with needle and thread by, beginning a ¼” from the end of the shape, loading stitches on the needle and finishing ¼” away from the end of the shape by pulling the needle through the loaded stitches.

I decided to create a Christmas Wreath pattern using clam shells, along with some Christmas prints, I created 8 of each size (3.5″ and 2.5″)

Using Island batik 16″black solid fabric square, I drew my design, this makes it easier when sewing the clam shell pieces in place

Let the hand sewing begin…

I begin with the outer layer and worked my way around

Once the small clam shells were sewn in place using Aurifil thread, I began adding the larger ones

After hand sewing the circle in place, I added a blanket stitch to add texture

I loved the final look of my block,I wanted the red/green fabric to give the impression of red berries on my wreath. I decided to create a cushion from my block.

Thanks for reading, I hope you have enjoyed seeing my process, head over to Island Batik to see all the other amazing ambassadors creations

Wishing you all a very merry Christmas, and all the very best for 2022

Michelle

October’s endangered animal awareness challenge…

The 2021 Aurifil Color Builders are a capsule of 12 mini-collections dedicated to an incredibly worthy cause that falls in line with Aurifil’s goal to increase sustainability and positive environmental impact — Endangered Species. Each collection contains three large spools of their supple and strong 40wt thread — a warm, a medium, and a dark.

For the October challenge, Aurifil asked the Island Batik Ambassadors to create a piece inspired by the endangered animal featured on their assigned Color Builder box.

I received the Sumatran Elephant…

The Sumatran elephant is native to the Indonesian island of Sumatra, and are one of the smallest of the Asian elephants, and known for their bright skin. Sadly there are are only between 2400 and 2800 Sumatran elephants left in the world, which puts them on the critically endangered list.

There has been a huge decline recently, largely due to habitat loss and illegal killing of the elephants for their ivory.

WWF Indonesia aims to protect the sustainability of the Sumatran elephants through collaborations with the government and other organizations. They have established elephant patrols, that serves to prevent hunting and dismantling of traps that can endanger the elephants.

Auriful thread have drawn their color inspiration from 12 magnificent animals, currently in dire need of attention, advocacy, and compassion. They are dedicated to highlighting their stories, helping to educate on their struggles, and working to create valuable change via awareness and fundraising. To help achieve these goals, Aurifil are collaborating with Earth League International and are looking forward to a strong and effective partnership, to read more about their work, head to

https://www.aurifil.com/2021-color-builders

I’ve created a wall hanging, using some gorgeous Island Batik fabrics, and the 3 Aurifil threads from my pack

I love the effect of the Island Batik blue fabrics

The light thread added a lovely shimmer to my project

Using the other two thread colours, I added some thread painting details to add depth and shading

Be sure to check out all the other Ambassadors projects, by heading over to the Island Batik Page

This wall hanging was quilted with Hobbs cotton batting and I added some hanging hoops to complete my project

I’ve really enjoyed reading about these elephants along with all the other Ambassadors projects, I hope you have too.

Michelle x

September challenge…

Ever had a challenge put to you, that you were unsure you could manage, one of those that plays on your mind, that you should crack on with, but you keep putting it off… well I have to admit the Island Batik September challenge was one of those moments!

I have made a few bags, but not one so advanced as this…

ByAnnie has generously provide all the Island Batik Ambassadors with a pattern and all the necessary hardware to make a bag of my choice!

There were so many to choose from, and all really practical and useful, I finally decided on the Round Trip Duffle Bag… thinking next time I go away for the weekend, Il be prepared 🙂

I chose the stunning Spiral Surf, Feather in Mauve, and Peacock Waterfall from the Fancy Feathers collection, and Branch in Blue from the Blenders collection

With all the pieces laid out in front of me and 10 pages of instructions, I was ready to begin make a cup of tea…

Supplies

I began working my way through the step by step instructions, which are really clearly written, even a bag novice like myself could get my head around them

I cut and quilted all the pieces, and was loving the fabrics combo I had chosen. (blues and purples are my favourite). The pattern also comes with REALLY handy printable labels for each piece, which I strongly recommend using, this keeps everything in order.

SOOOOOOOO many pieces right?!!! and they just keep coming!

Lots of straps are needed for this bag, so I would recommend an ‘Easy loop turner’ makes this process a breeze. I love adding the metal catches, I think it starts to make the bag feel like its coming together

Pockets were up next, I love a bag with lots of pockets, and this one has 9 (Cool huh!) and a really useful trolley sleeve which slips over the handles on your suitcase/trolley

The front and back were created next, along with the centre panel.

I was getting excited by this point, and all my worries of not being able to do it, were disappearing – I almost had a bag in front of me! Your patterns are genius ByAnnie.

I used Aurifil thread and Schmetz needles to create this bag, and they were amazing considering the layers I was sewing through.

Joining the final pieces of the bag and binding the inside, was made so much easier with the help of my Hemline Gold quilting clips

And with that my bag was complete… here is the inside

Drum roll…

Here is my finished weekend bag, I’m really pleased with out it turned out, and I can seriously recommend ByAnnie patterns

Huge thanks to Island batik, ByAnnie, Aurifil, Schmetz for supplying me with the accessories to create my bag for the September challenge, and my amazing Brother sewing machine – we did it!!

A few more photos, just in case you just cant get enough of this super gorgeous bag 🙂

Thanks for stopping by, please hit the follow button if you haven’t already, and find me on Instagram and Facebook.

Have a lovely weekend

Michelle x

Never too early challenge…

No one typically thinks of winter in the summertime but it’s the best time of all to get an early start on Christmas and holiday projects…

I love a Christmas table, filled with sparkle, so I decided to make some Christmas bauble placemats, using some gorgeous Christmas fabrics including Holly berries and Snowflake

Cute Christmas baubles you can personalize

These placemats are a perfect size for you dinner plate, and can be personalised for that extra special touch at Christmas.

I’ve used some vibrant Auriful thread, the green is 1114 and the purple is 2545 to add the wording details

Each place-mat has Vliseline Thermolam wadding inside, to give it some stability and form, with hand sewn binding, using Aurifil thread and Clover sharps black gold needles.

All finished off with a sparkly silver ribbon and bow, all I need now is the crackers and the Yorkshire puddings

Have you started thinking about Christmas yet?

Michelle x

spreading love and joy with my summer vibes lap quilt…

Welcome to June’s Island batik challenge, this month is all about using our Accuquilt ultimate cutting machine, and combining the 8” or 12” finished BOB dies, with the GO! Qube 8″ Mix & Match Block and create a whole new pattern by combining the two.

I decided to combine the Hattie Choice block with the Go! zero pattern block to make a 31″ square lap quilt. I’ve used some super bright orange and yellows from my stash buster collection, along with some gorgeous Marbles from the basics range and Almond from the neutrals collection

I wanted this lap quilt to give off some summer vibes

I used Hobbs cotton batting inside, along with a super bright yellow Auriful thread to quilt this blanket.

I added a really bright orange binding, to make this summer vibe quilt pop

I couldn’t resist taking this quilt on a little photo shoot around my garden in the beautiful sunshine…

Head over to Island Batik Facebook page to see all the other amazing quilts that have been designed by the other Ambassadors

Enjoy the beautiful sunshine, and spread some love and joy today

Michelle x

welcome to my Island batik Blog Hop day…

This month the Island Batik Ambassadors are show casing lots of new fabric collections, so be sure to check them all out. Head over to www.instagram.com/island_batik, to see the stunning quilts that have been created so far this month.

I got to play with a super gorgeous new collection called ‘Plum Pudding’its been designed by Kathy Engle for Island Batik, they are such beautiful modern colours and prints which are available to purchase in shops from May.

Plum Pudding Collection

I have created a 50″ x 50″ modern quilt, using these stunning fabrics, Aurifil thread and Hobbs batting.

Here are a few little sneaky peeks of the quilt, arent the colours just beautiful?

This quilt is made up of 16 blocks, but its when you bring the blocks together, is when the magic appears, I really love the fun, super charged pin wheels in this pattern.

This quilt is also one the first quilts to have one of my new labels sewn on…

As you know an Island Batik blog hop doesn’t come without an amazing giveaway, and this week they are giving you the chance to win a 2.5″ Strip Pack and 10″ Stack of the Island Batik Glacier Bay collection by Kathy Engle! Two winners will be chosen for this giveaway, so don’t delay, enter now!

Click Here To Enter

Enter here

Thank you to @aurifilthread@hobbsbatting@schmetzneedles, and @accuquilt for sponsoring this giveaway and Island Batik!

This giveaway ends on May 14th at 11:59 pm PDT. Two random winners will be notified by email on May 15th and announced on our Facebook page on May, 18th. If the winners do not respond within the first three days after being notified, two new random winners will be chosen.

This pattern is available to purchase from here on my blog, and is also available to purchase via my Etsy store www.etsy.com/uk/shop/creativeblondegifts along with lots of other Island Batik patterns.

Plum Pudding Quilt Pattern PDF

A stunning 50″ x 50″ quilt pattern, designed using the new ‘Plum Pudding’ collection from Island Batik. This quilt is bursting with purples and creams and has an amazing super charged pinwheel design.

£7.20

Thanks for stopping by, good luck, I hope you win the gorgeous fabrics

Michelle x

its all up to you…

The months Island Batik Challenge, was left down to us as ambassadors to decide what to make. Head over to the Island Batik page to see all the amazing creations from this month

www.facebook.com/islandbatik

I’ve been busy over the last few months completing the first of three modules of a surface pattern design course, so I was keen to bring some of my designs to life…

I used Jewel Quest fabric collection, along with some bright green and purple threads from Aurifil to create my cushion covers

Jewel Quest fabric from Island Batik

I really love free motion quilting, its just like drawing but with your machine, and I get a real buzz from it, here are some close ups, each cover is quilted using Hobbs 80/20 cotton mix batting.

16″ x 16″ cushion covers

If you love these cushion covers, I have some exciting news… I’m currently taking orders, so please get in touch as I’d love to make something that fits your living room or bedroom decor. These cushions covers are made to order, which means they are available in all sizes and colours, prices start from just £20.

These two cushions are already looking stunning in their new home, and look brilliant on their new owners snuggle sofa

Thanks so much for stopping by to read my blog, happy Monday!

Michelle x

Blueberry Swirl Quilt…

This months Island Batik Challenge was a scrap busting challenge…

I was keen to use my 2 1/2″ strips from the Crystal Sea collection, as this collection is bursting with all my favourite colours.

The bonus of using pre-cuts strips is the top quilt will come together quite quickly

I used Hobbs 80/20 black cotton batting , as its perfect when sewing with black or dark fabrics, as it helps maintain the fabrics true colours, and avoid light fibre lint transferring onto your quilt top during the quilting process

My gorgeous 10 stone Newfoundland was only too happy to pose for a photo 🙂

You can download my ‘Blueberry Swirl’ quilt pattern by heading over to my patterns page

https://creativeblondeblog.wordpress.com/patterns/

Don’t have time to sew, please contact me via my website here to place an order.

www.creativeblonde.co.uk

To see more of my tutorials or to place an order, you can head over my website www.creativeblonde.co.uk and/or Instagram page www.instagram.co.uk/michelle_creativeblonde and www.facebook.com/creativeblonde66

Happy sewing, thanks for stopping by, wishing you a lovely weekend

Michelle x