…Wedding anniversary that is.  It was my parent’s wedding anniversary last week, their 40th to be precise.  One of us was with another of us on the day in question, but it wasn’t the happy couple, after my dad had a slight date SNAFU and ended up on a jolly with my Uncle and friends in France at Le Mans.  It rained on him – you may decide if karma came into play ;o)

So when I was thinking about this, I had a brainwave – I needed an Oakshott Ruby bundle:

It ticked a number of boxes:

  1. The name fit the theme
  2. The colours fit the theme
  3. Oakshott’s fabrics are made in South West India, which happens to be where they went on holiday this year.

Sorted.  Now what to do with them…  So I pondered that for a while.  Then I thought for a bit.  Then I mulled it over.  Eventually I decided to try something I’d been thinking about for a while, improv piecing onto a paper base.  I sorted through the stack and divided them into warmer and cooler weft threads, then I got going.

I drew the outline of the mini and the heart on the same piece of flip chart paper, then I carefully cut both out and started hacking up fabric.  I started with the heart as a whole piece, but after a while realised it would be easier if I divided it up a bit, so it ended up in 3 pieces.  For the background, having learned something from the heart, I divided it into 4 pieces straight away.

I decided after all that piecing that I didn’t want heavy quilting, so I did a kind of ray effect emanating from the heart.  This was the point that I was extremely grateful for both the Aurifil thread pack that I won in the Modern Quilt Exhibition in Edinburgh last year, and for those sample packs that often get donated as prizes and in goodie bags, because I managed to find 5 different thread colours that went rather nicely both with each other and the fabrics.

Now I would include some photos of this in progress except, well, I didn’t take any.  I was tired and working a lot, and fitting it in whenever I could (I remember I was watching Beaches at one point, rather randomly), so it didn’t really cross my mind, it was just head down to the finish line.  Apologies for a slightly wrinkled look around the middle, I promise it really is flat, it’s just that it was folded into 4 for a while prior to handing it over

I had debated piecing in the heart, but in the end I went for the porthole/reverse applique technique, and both blanket stitched and straight stitched it in place:

As you can imagine, there was rather a lot of paper to pick out in the end, but it was worth it I think.