Saturday, 26 November 2016

I think I have been busy...

Well, there has been a wedding, and a graduation... so yes, I have been away and been busy.

I made the wee bridesmaid's dress, but that was all
 Little P was dreessed in a fair imitation of the bride's dress, with the lace bodice- lace was a theme this year- and a full purple skirt.

She is just seven on the day of the wedding- so mega celebrations, for this lassie!

and a full and flouncy petticoat to hold the skirts out!

with roses on. Because which seven year old can resist a rose?

The day went off well, and I think all had a good time.

The end result?
Bride and groom duly tied that knot!

And since that, we have attended our younger daughter's graduation- Well done everyone!

So now, it is Christmas preparations- so more enforced silence, I suspect... Maybe an odd sneak peek?

such as this one

or perhaps this one?

or, even, this one?

See you soon!

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

More Happy Post

My Coastal swap quilt arrived! Am I happy? Yes, I am thrilled! Would you like a wee look see? Of course!

This amazing batik fabric scene turned up for me!
It is perfect, I am so pleased with it, I cannot tell you!
and I was sent some 'extras' Extras are  fun, andbut my lovely partner, miniature quilter, was very generous, 

 this was the package that came,   Funny little bits, like the shaker cards, and the little charms, and a delightful mini charm pack, and a coral patterned hand towel.

Thank you partner, I was chuffed to bits- or as my receptionist says, 'Chuffed as meatballs!'  No, I don';t know why either!
 And this is how that cushion cover has come up, now it has new backing. The central tapestry stle bit was made by Mum, from a kit sometime 20 or 30 years ago. The kit was, I think, by 'Jane Rainbow'.

I do not know if they are still available, or if anything similar exists, but the quality must have been good, as it is still in quite good nick.

so, I returned this one, and brought it's friend home...

A bit more subtle, but still beautiful.

And this one will soon trot across to it's old home, all freshly backed and ready for more action!

Somewhere I also have one I made... I think it is time I dug it out and turned it into a cushion, as was originally intended... 

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

happy postReceived

A mystery swap means you are just not certain what you are getting , or from whom it will come...  I was the lucky recipient of this cheerful teeny tiny!

the kind Deanna sent me this package, with a tiny mini charm pack- I think a lot of us sent mini charms- it was just too appropriate to not!
She put in a lot of thought to this, and hand embroidered pine trees on the slopes, and a lovely sun peeking over those mountain tops!

Thank you Deanna! I love this mini!

Monday, 26 September 2016

Coastal thoughts

So the latest swap theme is 'Coastal'

Lots of thoughts of seaside scenes ran through my head, but my partner seems to have a great love of FPP.
I am not the greatest lover of FPP, but well, yes, I can do the technique...
so what can we find to FPP for her?

A sailing ship, free from, well, I am not sure just now...  Ok, I googled it again... Piece by number

The  finished item is about 6" square.
This mini was to be from 9" upward.. maximum 18",  so it needs a bit of something to widen it a tad.
It also required some rolling waves to sail upon,
 I felt that a 'snail trail' in the right colours was  a good start, three 4" finished waves should support my ship well.

Then a mermaid just begged to join the fun.
And had to audition a background to swim upon...

And she needed a lighthouse- I know, she told me so-  and some smaller snail trails at the top finished the job. 

The centre of those top ones is 3/4" made up of four small squares each 3/8" finished... But, oh, I do like the look of it!

And then a small extra, fabric basket got added to the quilt to be sent off to... aaah! now I wonder where it is going?    That would be telling!

Sunday, 25 September 2016

After twenty years or so...

Your cushion cover may well get a bit tired?

Mum's did anyway, so I unpicked the central wool embroidered bit, and trotted off to a local emporium to get some new cushion cover fabric to mount it on

So I have got some rather different green fabric to make the back of  the cushion this time. If it wears another twenty years I shall not be unhappy. 

And then, this evening I made a baby 'bunting'. My DD's bestie is expecting a small addition, so she asked me to produce a cosy fleecy 'outer' for littley. And here it is. It went together really well, I got back from a friend's about quarter to six, and this was done in time  for a latish supper! Maybe 2 hours work? 

I zigzagged down the seams at the shoulders, to sort of tidy the seams on the inside and  make a feature of the seams. 

I hope the wee scrap gets plenty of use from this one!

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Swap time again

I took part in another wee swap. A secret swap, so, I am afraid I did not post pictures as it went along, but now that my partner has received her package, I can show all.

 The swap criterion was tiny! No more than 6 inches in any dimension.  I had several ideas, and eventually settled on this version, using strips, and portholes and applique.
Strange, I do not think I am fond of doing applique, but I do like the end result, so I seem to do it rather more often than might be expected..
Now, this wee cat is reaching down, and she needed something to reach for..Perhaps a butterfly?

And then, any mini needs a back... 

 This back felt about right, and that is the label there at the bottom corner.

My partner had expressed a fondness for needle books, in her details, so for a wee addition, making a needle book felt rather apt. I had seen Lucy's 'Stitchy pie'
 but I did not really want to use someone else's pattern. So, I thought I might adapt the concept, and devised this one. It started as a circle, and then I scalloped the edges, to make more of a flower shape.

Felt on the inside, and a Kam snap to fasten it closed,

 and I felt it was a usable needle book.

A few more tiny extras and we are done!

I am eagerly watching the post, to see when I get a surprise mini quilt... Hurry up Mr Postie!

Wednesday, 20 July 2016


It is stash bee time again. I think we are almost done with this bee, and it has been one where we gradually got slower and more relaxed about timing, but we all stuck in there, and got stuff done.

This month it was feathers. We were asked to do scrappy, and sent the pattern, and background fabric. And so, it happened.

 I think I fulfilled the brief? Certainly scrappy!  I am leaving the trimming, so Svea gets to size it right for the rest of the blocks.

I may try to remember to stick this one in for Nicky's scraptastic, next month!

It should get posted in the next couple of days.....

Monday, 20 June 2016

Thank you gift

 I went to Bonn at Whit bank holiday. Well, you see I have a friend over there, who puts up with me going, taking over her sewing machine, using her fabrics and generally making a nuisance of myself...
And while I was there she was involved in a workshop on Flying Geese.. 
and I was allowed to join these wonderful ladies. Everyone made their own take on the geese, and what they would do with their geese... But, of course, everyone brought their own sewing machine... except this strange visitor from overseas.

 She could not quite manage a machine in the hand luggage only.

But one lovely lady brought a spare, so I could also sew. I think what she did was, she brought her old and her new machine, and she used her old one and gave me the use of her new one! The kindness I received in Germany, I just do not know how to express it! it is just incredible.

So, a small thank you seemed appropriate.
If you pop across to her blog, you will see that she is quite a fan of neutrals, and does amazing things with her neutrals, so I felt a pincusion to attach to her machine was a half an idea- well I looked at her pile of pins next to her machine, and just, well it felt like the thing to do... So, I dug in my neutrals and produced this one, which she has now received. I think it may see some use.

Thank you lovely ladies for making me feel so welcome.

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Barefoot sewing

I thought it was time I got some overdue stuff out of the way. so, these came off the machine today

 Angel block to head off to the States

Angel block to go to Ireland

Added to the link for Nicky's scaptastic Tuesday!

And we had a repeat visit from a little friend, I think she is perhaps feeding babies... She seems fit and well, trundling about her business... 

Sunday, 5 June 2016

Garden day

It is June already, and I have spent less time on the garden than I can ever remember.
The weather has managed to be perfect for the garden when I am at work, or away, and dire, when I have time to do it, or I have had another something urgent to deal with instead.
Today though?
I got into the garden.
I do not have a large garden, but still, I cannot get round all of it in one day, so I have to select an area, and go at it!

I managed to clip the edges of the grass on the lower bit of grass- I really cannot grace it with the title of 'lawn', there is more bugle and buttercup than there is grass really- and do some weeding and hoeing and digging. Then a pear tree which had lived in a pot for several years was transplanted into a cleared area. It put up a struggle, not wanting to leave it's cosy pot, but a bit of persuasion.... 

The allium there is a volunteer, and I shall not discourage it. I am very happy with it's personal life choices. A pretty clematis which had waited a year to be given freedom of the soil has also found a home now. I wanted to give it a teepee to climb, but it was not for letting go of it's little trellis, so, I suppose, I have to allow it. Various fuschias have also survived a long time in pots, so, hardy they must be, and I shall allow them garden freedom too. Then I just got some cheap summer bedding and popped that in to help brighten us up a bit. 

This is a difficult corner. It does get sun, but not until afternoon, and the rhubarb struggles, unlike it's cousin outside the back door, in the first picture. 

 these two pots had been emptied of their contents- dead summer bedding from two years ago, and I have refilled them, to give some cheer outside the living room
 Yes, well- there used to be trellis for these to climb, but it disintegrated in the winds a couple of years ago, and somehow, we just haven't got the 'Round Tuit' to sort it out. But secretly- not so secret now- I love the riotous behavior of these clematis. Last year was the first time the pink one flowered, and boy is it making up for lost time!
Yes, that volunteer again. Love the green seedheads contrasting with the purple. Love the not quite perfection of that sphere, it is just feisty enough to decline the sphere!

oh sewing? what do you mean sewing?? 

Oh that bit! I did some sewing over the bank holiday weekend, but failed to take the pictures, but I was in Germany, and someone else took pictures!  If you pop over to her blog, she will show you. 

And since I came back I have made a couple of bits, Here is the second one, 
  a pin cushion for someone in USA, who has been very kind and generous to me. She will find out when it arrives, but, I think she does not follow me, so it should be a complete surprise.

And here, I have put it onto my machine, just for show.

There is more, but really, this is enough for one day!

Back soon, I hope!

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

May challenge for those Lazy Bums

My challenge this month was to make a T shirt, from fabric which has been lurking for over a year. What excuses can I make?

Pure idleness!
So the challenge was issued, just as I had got the fabric out and the pattern ready anyway! Lucky lucky!

I think this may be a Liberty print jersey- it is certainly William Morris inspired, with a dark blue background, and those lovely colours in the print, slightly muted, but singing to me. 

 Top-stitching round curves is not as easy as it might be...  but helps stop the facing escaping.

The facing was interfaced with iron on stretch interfacing, which is different from my last stretch interfacing, more stretchy? I think it may be better for this project. It is very light weight!

I do like a slightly longer T shirt than is currently available in the shops, so making it oneself is the sensible option. I also like the bell sleeve, which I redrafted from a straight sleeve, for a previous T shirt A little cooler than the straighter version.

And I overlocked all the seams, just hemming and topstitching with the standard machine. It went together super quick, and is very comfortable.

The hem is done with a twin needle, designed for stretch fabric. Not a ball point twin, but a stretch twin. It makes all the difference!

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

A challenge completed

Well, it was this month's challenge.. and last month's and I think also the challenge at various previous months... But it is done!

 The fabric was bought in Goldhawk Road, down near Shepherd's Bush, last year, with the assistance of my lovely son, and his young lady, and has been waiting patiently for me to deal with ever since. But now, it is ready for wearing.I am rather happy with the end result, though I have not finished the neck as well as I ought, but hey, who is to inspect it there? Get those paws off!

And I did self covered buttons, just because!

And I have still some T shirts awaiting the making... so I needed some more stretch interfacing, and went off to Abakhan for it. What I got was not quite what I ahd had previously, but I trust it will do. 

 It certainly looks stretchy enough.

and, as sometimes happens, while I was there a couple of other fabrics just sort of fell into my hand....

No, I am not sure what I plan for them just yet, either, but this is what came home with me...

All seemed to have that mystery something that meant they were not supposed to stay in the shop...

Not safe to be let loose some of us...

I am also the proud possessor of a new wee toy..
 Yes, a one of these..  My youngest gave it to me, and I still need to give it a go. I have a sort of idea in my mind as to what I shall use it for in the first playing... watch this space!

but do not hold your breath, I have some distance learning to do for work, which has to come first...

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Screen printing ( Painting, anyone?)

You may recall a visit I made to Stitchscape, which is down the road a way from me. It is about a mile away, so really convenient to get to. That was back in November.
So when I saw that Di had Karen Lewis ( yes, really, Karen Lewis!!!) coming to do a workshop in February, I sadly decided that I could not attend. You see, it was on a Saturday, all day, and I work including Saturdays. I came home and whinged to my husband... and he said, book it. And that he wanted to come too!  and then I thought about someone else... who I thought might like to come as well. So, I spoke to Di ( she is a love, you should meet her, she is just amazingly lovely) and she agreed to hold a place if she could... but there were other people interested, and they needed first refusal... and, and... and then she spoke to Karen, who agreed an extra place could be found, for a special overseas visitor!

So I spoke to my lovely friend from overseas, and booked us all on!  She did wonder a bit why I was all excited, until she twigged what we were really doing, and mentioned it to her friends more locally, who said, yes, there is someone really good, Karen Lewis, that would be OK, and then, of course they wanted to climb in her suitcase and come too...

Sorry Karen, not the most flattering shot, as you were mid explanation, but the only one I have of you!
Karen explained eveything really well, made it all simple, and got us all doing our own designs and preparing the masks for printing, Everyone did different things, and very effective some of those designs! We all came away with fabric samples to use, and a set of simple techniques so that we can print all sorts of stuff at home. Karen is great fun and very friendly. You can ask about any aspect of the process and she will keep you laughing and doing!

Nobody said it was a tidy craft to pursue! a lot of mess is fairly inevitable!

Teatowels were provided for us to play with, as well as bringing our own fabric to print on, and tha blank newsprint was good for making masks as well as practising technique. 

this lady used curves from a ruler to get her design up and running. 
Altogether we had a fabulous day, thanks to Karen and to Di. 

Di plans to run another Karen Lewis day in the autumn, so watch out for her on Stitchscape, or you may miss a fantastic opportunity!
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