Sunday, 30 December 2012

I love Christmas...

The festivities are nearly over, but what a lovely Christmas we had. I love the build up to Christmas, the anticipation the expectation and all the sparklies and decorations, everywhere just looks so pretty.

I love that we all make the effort and catch up with friends and family and what a good time everybody has! Beforehand I was trying to finish my crafty presents....

Handwarmers for the grandkids...

a pair for myself!

and some Christmas bags.

and attaching labels to gifts already made...

Mum's throw
Denny's cushion
My blue and white quilt is at a standstill at the moment but all the squares have been pieced together

ready for the 6" borders to be attached. The fabric for the borders have been used in the blocks.

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Cherry Christmas

Yes that's right....Cherry Christmas by Moda is the cute fabric I used in this bunting I made for Sophie.

I just love this fabric with it's little robins and cherries. it goes so well with the warm red and white spotty fabric, very seasonal indeed. I lined the bunting flags with some unbleached calico meaning  that the more expensive fabrics go that much further, thrifty me hey what!

In the meantime I finished the patchwork  throw I made mum for Christmas. It should keep her knees scrumptiusly cosy  as she watches TV and scoffs choccies especially as I have lined it with lovely warm fleece!

I just need to sew a label onto it and et voila it will be ready to wrap up ready for Christmas!

Friday, 30 November 2012

wonky wilma

just look at my wonky wilma, she's pretty cute!

 She's not only cute but she is doing her bit for Great Ormond Street hospital. She does her charitable bit by having been designed by Janet of kitchen table sewing , and for a mere £5 you can buy the pattern and make your very own Wonky Wilma for your children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews or just for yourself! And all the proceeds go to the charity. Mine is made for a baby in nursery fabric but when you check out Janet's blog you will see lot's of lovely Wilma's in all sorts of fabrics. Janet is aiming to have raised £1000 by Christmas. Good luck and well done Janet!

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

blues and white

Hasn't the weather been so awful just lately, fortunately we haven't had the misery of flooding. My heart goes out to all those who have been affected, it must be heartbreaking! However what this wet weather does mean is that there is no temptation to go out and do any thing other than what has to be done! No pottering in the garden, no going for long walks with a willing dog (only the must do walks!),  perfect weather for a bit of sewing! I have started a new quilting project and I am really excited as I am having a go at some new techniques. I am a self taught quilter and I have to rely on books and trial and error as I go along (lots of trial and error unfortunately). The colour scheme is blue and white, I bought some gorgeous fabric from Quilters Haven in Wickham Market, I didn't mean to I only went in for some bleached calico and they hadn't got any of that! The shop is a quilter's dream I could have spent a fortune, I feel quite fortunate that I came out having spent only £55!!

some of the blues for the quilt

Having rifled through my stash of fabrics I soon found what I needed to complement my new fabrics and then armed with my self healing mat, ruler and rotary cutter I proceeded to cut 32 squares in blue 16cm x 16cm, 32 white squares 16cm x 16cm, 128 blue and 128 white squares  8cm x 8cm, whew!

The fun part was about to begin! Each small square is marked with a diagonal line and starting with a large blue square, the white squares are placed in the corners and stitched on the diagonal line (or if it was a large white square it would be small blue squares, so it is either white on blue or blue on white)
2 small white squares placed in the corners of a large blue square

Once I had stitched diagonally onto the larger square a cut is made 5mm from the stitching.

I continued like this with the remaining squares

When the square had been pressed out et voila! And so onwards and outwards with the remaining 300 or so remaining pieces!

By the end of cutting and sewing these squares together I should have 32  with blue in the middle and 32  with white and then I can start piecing them together. Watch this space!

Sunday, 4 November 2012


A very sad farewell to Spike, one of my three lovely cats, he died on Tuesday and he is desperately missed. It has been a very hard emotional week for me :(

Friday, 26 October 2012

and a bit of knitting

Hasn't the weather been dreary this week, so dull and murky, I am not motivated to do anything when it's like that, I have to force myself into doing stuff. But this morning when I got up, after Andy, bless him, brought my tea up (mornings are not me, it takes me ages to get up and then ages to get it together and I always look as though I have been dragged through a hedge backwards...doesn't everybody?) I was definitely in a better frame of mind. So much so I became the veritable earth mother and made blackcurrant jam with blackcurrants grown on my allotment and frozen at the time of picking...

 some absolutely gorgeous flapjacks from a River Cottage recipe...

and in between a bit of knitting......

and finally a gingerbread cake that has been maturing for a week....

ready for slicing and freezing

Saturday, 20 October 2012

my vintage style make

I have been very industrious and made my first Christmas gift! I just love the gorgeous fabrics used to make this patchwork cushion, they are all vintage style prints and florals in cotton. I love the way the colours and prints work so well together. I have lined the front with fusible wadding to give it more stability and the backing is made with lovely vintage damask linen in an off white colour that in it's heyday was a large serviette! One of my finds from years ago in my fabric stash.

I made a similar one a little while ago and loved it and  I knew someone else who would love it too!

One I made earlier!
Onto my next project, another Christmas gift, this time a throw for my mum. I wanted fabrics that were not pastel but still had a vintage feel and I found these lovely prints in a shop in Brighton.

The fabrics are from different collections, Rounneries deux by french General for Moda, Athill range by Cabbage and Roses for Moda, a fabric called Spring patchwork, in the far left of the picture, but I don't know the collection. I added two other fabrics to brighten things up a bit, Tilda dots on red and Doily and Rose Cotton a pretty floral fabric from Sew La La an online shop with loads of gorgeous fabrics.

setting the squares out on the bed!

I really wanted to have a pattern in this patchwork but I just couldn't decide on what to do with the fabrics I had bought with mum in mind, so in the end I decided on piecing the fabrics in diagonal stripes. This has worked well as the colours and patterns blend well together but also there is a nice contrast with the tilda and pink floral fabric against the dusty pinks and browns. (Unfortunately the photo makes the colours look a bit dull). I intend to line it with a nice fluffy fleece which I am going to get today and I expect that won't be the only thing I come out of the shop with!

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

my quilt of many colours!

At last I have finished my latest quilt...

it is made up of strips of my favourite fabrics, stitched together to form a very long strip, then cut into strips the same length and pieced together to form a block. Altogether there are nine blocks pieced together with white sashing and lilac corner blocks.

My quilts take ages because I quilt them by hand with embroidery thread, I find it very therapeutic (although time consuming) to sit on the sofa stitching the lines of quilting. As my rows are very close together there is an awful lot of stitching, but in future I think I will make them wider and save some time!

The backing is made from a duvet cover that I picked up from a charity shop, it's lovely and soft and the wadding is a medium weight polyester. To finish it off I made a border out of some pretty pink dotty fabric. The overall size is 120cm x 120cm.

It's a lovely quilt, I haven't quite made up my mind what to do with it, whether to keep it or to sell it, it would look lovely on the top of a single bed or as a throw. At the moment it looks pretty gorgeous on the back of one of my armchairs, I've gotta make my mind up soon!

Friday, 5 October 2012

rocking chair chic

remember the second hand rocking chair I bought recently, today I decided that instead of spending all day in the garden, weeding and digging like I did yesterday (and a damn good job I did too!) I am going to do some sewing and what I am going to make is a country style cushion to sit on the rocking chair. I had already decided on the fabric but I couldn't decide on the trimmings, whether to do some piping or frills. Frills won out in the end.

The frills were easy to make although time consuming and fiddly but well worth the effort me thinks!

Rocking chair chic I would say!

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Way back in May I promised Joni and Poppy that I would knit them a doll each. I had just made one for Rosie based on this angel doll I made for Christmas.

It was really cute, knitted in DK from a King Cole pattern for an advent calender, this angel sat at the bottom of the calender. It is easy to knit and doesn't take too long, but  having said that it took ages to finish these as I constantly got distracted by lovely new fabrics to try out or something else to knit. I  finished knitting them ages ago but couldn't get motivated to sewing them up, the bit I like least of all! The hair is really fiddly to do, cutting loads of strands about 8ins long and although each one is measured against the next one, they were still uneven when it was ready to be attached to the head. Obviously I am not a precision cutter! And as for the faces, say no more!

 I vary  the colours to make them different. I also match the hair to  who I am giving it to. Rosie has lovely brunette hair and Joni and Poppy have gorgeous strawberry blonde colour hair.

I may not be an artist but at least they are smiling!

Thursday, 20 September 2012

humpty dumpty and other nursery rhymes

My niece Katie is expecting her first baby, which is actually due today! I had knitted a couple of things for the baby and I wanted to present them in a sweet way so I decided to make a nursery gift bag for the little jacket I had knitted. I had some lovely nursery fabric that I bought online and made this sweet little bag

I love the detail of nursery rhyme figures on the lower part of the bag

                                        one little piggy went to market

                                              Humpty Dumpty

        you can just see Hickory Dickery Dock on the left hand side

The fabric for the upper part of the bag is a lovely bright red colour with letters of the alphabet and numbers and stars, a perfect nursery fabric. I finished it off with this pretty trim. I am really pleased with the result and hope to make more of these bags to sell in my Etsy shop.
Let's hope Katy doesn't have to wait any longer for baby as I am pretty sure she is getting fed up with waiting!
What one needs when nursing babies is a rocking chair! And here is one I made earlier ( well I didn't make it so much as bought it!)

I have always wanted a rocking chair and when I saw this in a second hand shop in Needham Market I had to have it.

I intend to make a comfy cushion out of this fabric, I think I picked it up in Felixstowe a while ago, it will suit the cottage style I want to maintain in my home.

In the meantime a quilted throw and a ticking cushion made by me does the trick!