26 February 2012

Spider Wheel Tutorial

Spider Wheel Tutorial
I've had a couple of my Tuesday Stitchers friends request a tutorial on how I made the Spider Wheel that I stitched onto my February CQJP block....... so here it is.

You may like to draw an inner and outer circle on your fabric as guide lines for the stitching. I don't use guide lines as I am predominantly a Freeform stitcher.

Stitch "spokes" of the wheel

Bring thread to the front between two spokes of the inner circle

Take needle under two spokes. Do not go through fabric.

Pull thread gently through

Take thread under the last spoke again, and under the next spoke. 
The needle always goes under two spokes at a time.

Pull thread through.

Same again with the next spokes.
Always go back under the last spoke to wrap the thread around that spoke.

Pull thread through again gently to wrap thread around the spoke.

Continue around the wheel.

Back at the start.

Keep going around the wheel.
Here I have been around the wheel three times so far.

Keep going.

I changed thread colour towards the outside.

Keep wrapping the spokes until you have the wheel complete.
Side view shows it is quite a textured wheel.

And I filled the centre with French Knots.

20 February 2012

CQJP February WIP & TAST Week 7

CQJP - February - WIP

Updates on the February block and a few close-up pics of some stitch embellishments so far on this block.

The needle-weaving seam, that was extremely "slow going" last week, has now been completed thanks mostly to my darling "Dooman" hubby who made new legs for my Posilock frame stand so that I could pop the embroidery hoop in it and work with both hands on the stitching. Phew!!!. It is great to be working without having to hold the hoop in one hand now. That Posilock stand has not been able to stand up on it's own for about 10 years, and I really missed it.
Last weekend Dooman was meant to be building a shed to house his new farm equipment. It started raining quite heavily and I wandered out to the barn (where he was hiding) and presented him with the Posilock stand and told him what the legs should look like. Less than half an hour later he gave it back to me complete with new legs, oh yeah, and the biggest smile on his face.
Lots of brownie points for Dooman.

The double row of Cretan stitch.

 The Crocheted Lace piece.

Lots more embellishing to do on this block yet.

 and the following TAST close-up pics are worked on this block too.

TAST week 7 - Detached Chain Stitch

Detached chain in lilac thread stitched closely side-by-side, and the pale green silk ribbon is detached chain as well.

Isn't this a great detached chain stitch "wheel" in variegated  thread.
The centre is a woven spider wheel, and there will eventually be something else in the middle, but I haven't decided if it will be a bead, French knots, or something else.

My Other Project Updates

No update for February BJP as I haven't even started it yet. It is all "In-My-Head" for now.

I have made the fabric choices for Counties Quilters - February BOM due at next meeting in March.

I have fused the Kiwifruit applique block for Prostate Cancer Charity Quilt fundraiser. The block is now ready for blanket stitch and embellishing.

 And the 2012 Freeform Crochet Challenge work is well under way, but I'm not allowed to post any pictures until the challenge book is published with all the entries in. This keeps it a wonderful surprise so that everyone can see all the challenge pieces at the same moment, and not get influenced (or intimidated) by anyone else's work.

So it has been another busy, busy week. 

Next week has the potential to explode for me. 
I want to make a brightly coloured, highly textured cushion for my mum, who has very poor eyesight (hence the bright colours and textures). She is almost totally deaf now too, and to top it off, she has recently had another fall and broken a couple of ribs.
As a very active person in the past, she is now suffering a bit. She loved her garden and spent all her spare time there when she wasn't working, stitching, or crocheting. So that is why I want to send her a flower cushion. To help bring a bit of that love back into her life, and to remind her that I love her even though I am half way around the world from her.

15 February 2012

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day

You can QUILT it

You can STITCH it

You can COLOUR it 

You can PAINT it

You can COLLAGE it

You can CUT it

Your can CARD it

Just make sure that you SAY it

Love from

 All images on this site are copyright Cyra Lewis 2012.
 All Rights Reserved

12 February 2012

CQJP February Block

CQJP February Block

Here is my "NAKED" block for February's Crazy Quilt Journal Project
(please excuse bits of loose thread I forgot to remove before taking photo)

And just a little bit of stitching so far completed this week.
I am so looking forward to more stitching on this block. I have some lovely beads eagerly waiting to be auditioned. And that butterfly in the middle patch is begging for embellishment.

Happy Stitching

09 February 2012

TAST Week 6 - Chevron Stitch

TAST Week 6 - Chevron Stitch

A nicely productive week for me so far. 
Didn't get too many Chevron stitch samples done, but I shall add some more to my journal page at a later date when I get some time to experiment some more.

Chevron Stitch

Double row of Chevron stitch in two heights

Raised Chevron Stitch

And all together on my journal page they look like this

Happy Stitching


08 February 2012

TAST Week 5 - Herringbone Stitch

TAST Week 5 - Herringbone Stitch

Herringbone stitch has many variations and it is very popular on Crazy Quilts. 
It can be used as the base stitch to 'build' many designs on and in this way can be combined with many other stitches to make very interesting patterns for seam treatments.

Here is the unstitched hand dyed evenweave panel that I am starting for February's stitches. 
The working area is 9 inches square and will eventually be put in a journal book along with the other 'pages' of stitches. There could be any number of different stitches on each panel. It all depends on how much time I have for stitching and whether I experiment lots or a little with the various stitches.

The Basic Herringbone stitch worked in DMC stranded cotton floss.

Stacked Herringbone

 Rows of Overlapping Herringbone

An experiment with curved edges

This was meant to be Long and Short Herringbone stitch, but I think I ruined it slightly by trying to do it on a curve. I probably should have at least drawn a guide line for the curve first, but I hardly ever plan ahead. Free Form Stitching is the name of this blog for good reason, haha!!!

Now this next one is actually called Ladder Herringbone, but I think it is very like a 'laced' Cretan stitch.
I really should not have used three different colour threads in my needle at the same time as it is very difficult to see the stitch. Sorry about that.

And here is a Closed Herringbone stitch.
Started off a wee bit uneven on the left for a couple of centimetres, but then once I got the hang of 'what-happens-where' things got neater.

And to experiment some more with the Closed Herringbone stitch .....
(I like the solid look of this stitch)
I wondered what effect a variegated thread would have with this stitch.
I rather like the result. Only problem was that it uses up a LOT of thread, but sometimes it is necessary to use quantity just to get the right look to a project.
I shall definitely be using this textured stitch in my CQJP.

So here is my Journal Page so far with all my TAST week 5 stitches.

Happy Stitching

05 February 2012

CQJP January Block

CQJP January Block

Just a few days after the end of January and I have my block at a good finish point for the Crazy Quilt Journal Project.

So this is the 9 inch completed block so far.

And here are a couple of close-up pics

In that last pic you can see I've added a piece of crochet to a seam. 
I have decided to create a piece of crochet lace (or maybe two or three pieces) for each of my blocks. Crochet is my 'other' passion, so it feels very natural to include my own crochet on the crazy blocks. Crochet pieces will be designed and made specifically for the cq block and staying within the colour scheme. That will make my blocks even more 'personal' to me.

I shall be adding a raised stitch butterfly to the centre fabric patch at some time in the future, but I want to have a few blocks at the completed stage so that I can stitch a few at a time for continuity throughout the 12 blocks. 
I'm not sure yet what form they will take. I've still got that part on the project design board.

I'm happy to have the first block of my CQJP done now, and I look forward to getting February's block started. I'm really enjoying the challenge of working on these blocks.

My stitching 'theme' is not entirely traditional looking. I am trying to incorporate a more geometric look to the blocks as I don't want to go too 'flowery' with them (although a flower or two did pop up on this block, lol)

I love experimenting with pattern, line, shape and form.

That's all for now folks!!

Happy Stitching