Thursday, 30 August 2012

I just couldn't help myself!

I know I haven't finished the latest quilt I am working on but I was so inspired by a patchwork cushion design in one of the craft books I got for my birthday (Cottage Style Quilting by Lynette Anderson ), that I couldn't stop myself from starting a new project before I had finished the last one!
Ah well what can I say! I had a really good time sorting through my fabrics, seeing what would go with what. I wanted  to create a vintage shabby look and I used vintage style pink and blue floral prints.  Now for the precision part of the process, with great solemnity (and may I say skill!!) I then cut out 128 x inch and a half squares and a four and a half inch square for the middle. The next step was to to make a 9 square block.
Did you notice the deliberate error??? One square too many, I have to say that wasn't the last time I did that!
sorry about all  threads in the pic, I do actually snip the threads.
all the blocks nicely made up ready for me to design something for the middle

I haven't done any embroidery for years but I do intend to do some more now I have a bit of a taste for something more elaborate. The little hearts were scraps of fabric from a design called Durham by Lecien which I had used from a previous quilt and it is a lovely faded romantic look.
Tomorrow I will hopefully have time to finish it!

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

knitting with bamboo!

My lovely niece Katie is expecting her first baby, a great excuse to knit some baby stuff. I wanted to make a shawl or blanket that wasn't too complicated and didn't have crochet edgings as I cannot crochet! I also did not want to have to buy a book of patterns either! You would think that would be quite simple. No way! It took me ages to find the right pattern, but I did still end up buying a book of patterns! But not only that, once I tried to buy the wool I realised the wool had been discontinued! And not for the first time this has happened to me, beware if the pattern book is cheap there is a good reason for it! Never mind I managed to get the wool and it knits up as DK,
 The wool is a bamboo mix, very very soft perfect for babies and the colour is not a bright white but described as Ice white. It was fairly simple and quick to make.

Thursday, 23 August 2012

yet another birthday!

yes I am still only 30 ( oh dear my nose has just grown longer!) well double it and that will be about right!  I had some lovely birthday presents, I did very well indeed! Two of the presents were craft books that I had specifically asked for having checked them out on Amazon. The books were Fast Fabric Gifts by Sally Southern and  Country Cottage Quilts by Lynette Anderson and I was so pleased with them,they were full of gorgeous things to make. I couldn't wait to get home and get crafting. So as soon as I could I sorted through my stack of lovely fabrics and decided to make pencil cases for Rosie, Joni and Poppy three of my grandchildren. And here they are after several mistakes like sewing the applique on upside down or attaching the bondaweb to the wrong side of the material to name just a couple! By the third one I just about got it right!
This is the first one I made, a lot was learnt from this! The front of the case
and the back.
Number 2....

and the back....
and last but not least number 3...
the back of this one is made in the same fabric as number 2. The lovely fabrics were from . I stiffened the fabric to make the case more sturdy and each one has a zip fitted. I can't wait for the next project!

Monday, 13 August 2012

oops, one patchwork panel too many

Wasn't the closing ceremony of the Olympics fantastic? We loved every minute of it but what now it is all over? Perhaps my latest quilt will get finished! I couldn't cope with all the excitement and hand stitching at the same time! Well I think have broken the back of it now. I just have to finish quilting about 3 of the panels by hand and the next thing will be to decide on the fabric I want to use for the binding, make the aforementioned  binding and then attach it to the quilt. Easy hey!

 I foolishly made one panel too many so I have turned it into a very pretty cushion.

and the back I made out of pretty lilac gingham fabric finished off with 3 white buttons.

Sunday, 12 August 2012

it's been ages....

I know it's been ages since my last blog but I have been so busy with one thing or another and in between had a fabulous holiday. We got so fed up with the unseasonal weather that on a whim we booked a mediterrean cruise and 4 weeks later we were off! Of course it meant that I had to go and do some dress shopping, oh dear, what a shame! Chuck and I enjoyed ourselves so much we can't wait to go on the next one! There was loads to do on  the ship when it was at sea and of course there were the beautiful locations we stopped at and took tours, my favourite being Alhambra palace with its beautiful Moorish architecture and location.
We toured Pompeii and wouldn't have missed that for the world, our guide was very good and knew her subject very well indeed.

We docked at Sardinia for a morning and we found the locals so friendly and had an enjoyable glass of wine and pizza in a local cafe.
                                                       the docks at Calighari

                                                        the Kasbah
and we stopped off at Algiers but we were only allowed on shore as part of a tour with a police escort back and front and the locals were not allowed to mingle with us....I am not sure for whose benefit it was! But it was an interesting tour and worth doing.

and some interesting sculptured fruit and veg carved by the chefs on the ship
 We had a go at Ballroom dancing in the form of 45 minute taster lessons and had such a laugh, and even though we have 5 left feet between us, we have joined classes locally!

On a crafting note, I am still in the process of hand stitching my latest patchwork quilt which I am hoping to sell. And because it is hand stitched, it is painstakingly slow and as I am sewing it in front of the TV whilst I am watching the Olympics, it's taking even longer as I keep getting very very excited especially when the cycling was on and then of course the athletics, swimming..well all of it actually, it does make me feel very proud to be British!