Thursday 30 August 2012

Making progress

so on Tuesday I spent a wonderful day with Di, and this time, in addition to the chatting and laughing, wonderful food and company, and freshly baked cake ...

we even managed a couple of blocks for Bee Blessed!

I left the remaining scraps with Di for a little more fabric therapy, and will aim to get a few more done at the weekend. The hardest part of these blocks was making the decisions of which fabric where!

And further evidence of progress ...

I'm sewing binding!

In other news, the big birthday bag (purse) went down very well indeed!

Wednesday 29 August 2012

Low Volume Swap

If you are not already aware, there is a Low Volume Charm Swap going on Flickr right now ...
details and sign ups can be found on Rebecca's blog here if you're interested. 
Going on, what harm can it do to take a look, it'll be fun, right?  

Sunday 26 August 2012

Sunday Sitrep

Sunday already! 
My goodness this week has flown by!  is it just me?
I wanted to get a lot done, no, I NEEDED to get a lot done!
first up, Pea Room BOM Block
and then there was the round robin to get to Lynz for the Ab Fab Free Bees
and of course the Brit Bee Blocks for the lovely Katy
and a small matter of a framed purse for a birthday gift, 
I haven't finished quilting the Best of British just yet, but it's close

my time seems to be on everyone else's agenda at the moment, and I'm a little sluggish getting going in the mornings ... I need to change that situation ...
though the annual school shop for shoes (urghhh!) and uniform is done!
And this year the Teenage Diva actually lost the will to live long before I did!
Plan for the coming week ...
finish quilting Best of British
turn this pile of loveliness into a Brit Quilt Swap quilt for my partner
load up a customer quilt and get it movin'
I think, being as I already have a day sewing planned with Di that is enough to keep me out of too much trouble, don't you think?
And then there is the small matter of himself that has other ideas, and Mum's Taxi duties!

(I continue to do battle with Blogger loading my pics, and my laptop that is slowly dying)

Saturday 25 August 2012

festival finds

Firstly, I found one or two people whilst browsing the stands ...

None other than the lovely Laura Jane, demo'ing on the cotton patch stand for Sizzix. AND Hadley's quilt she made for them keeping her company!  And another Sizzix flag flyer teaching all day, everyday was Katy!  (but no pic sorry)

and there was Alice of Backstitch
and then there was Tracey from Quilt Me Happy ...

I had an early visit from Judith of Needles and Lemons ...
and there was also Susan, Nicky, Shevvy, Emma, Mandy, Tina, Joan, Jackie and ... well lots of lovely friends old and new who stopped  by to say hello or that I bumped into in the isles ...

and then there is the small matter of the things that found their way home with me!  Really very modest!


Really, very modest indeed!

Wednesday 22 August 2012

Festival Fallout ...

So the other of my quilts in the show were ...

There's an Echo in my Cherry!
and ...
Carolina Christmas ...
but not only that there were a couple more there working hard on the stand ...
recently finished, just in time ...
and for an example of what can be done

So today yesterday (amended because blogger is taking forever and some to load my pictures) I drove to Birmingham and collected my quilts, and with them came those dreaded Judges comments ... hmm, seems that on the whole my quilts were good, and in some cases excellent, but in others, well lets just say, the judge completely missed the point! 

Still I know have a pile of tissue paper, bubble wrap and brown wrapping paper to fold, sort and organise ... not rest for the wicked!

and I just happen to be on leave now til the return to school for the Diva ... so it's time to knuckle down and play catch up!

first up ... Bee Blocks for Katy ...

then I have this pile to turn into another round for the Ab Fab Free Bees and get is sent to Lynz sharpish before the wee beasties arrive! 

think of an image of fabric and you'd be close!
and then there's this that needs to be turned into a birthday present before the weekend ...
imagine a picture, because I've now lost the will to live!
and of course there is still this on the frame ...

but I do have a plan ... I was doodling first thing yesterday morning! before I tackled the Pea Room BOM for last night's meeting!
but, this task continues ...

in earnest!

and of course, there is the small matter of the Brit Quilt Swap 3 mini to make!

So I'll be back soon with something else to show you when I stop for air, food and water, and maybe with a little luck I'll find that mojo fast!

(and if Blogger ever lets me upload any pictures!)

Thursday 16 August 2012

Festival - Part 1

So my feet are a little sore, and I'm feeling weary after day one of Festival ...

Now, about that challenge quilt ...

I thought about the theme 'Britain what it means to you' long and hard, and how I could depict that in pictorial/quilt format ... and this idea grew and grew strong. so strong I had to paint it as a watercolour to make sure I could get it out of my head and make it work ... Sorry I don't have pics of that here ... But I can reveal the quilt now it's on show ..

As you can see, it's not your average tea, cakes and glory bunting ... so how did it come to,this ....

during my 21+ years in the Royal air Force, all the many detachments, deployments and serving aboard, every time I came home, what I was alway struck by was this green and pleasant land. I'm proud to have served my Queen and Country, and I am proud of the medals I earned doing that. whilst there is a broach which is a real copy of my medals on my quilt, I could not display them without a poppy attached to honour all who have gone before me, those who have served, those who continue to serve ... And those who came home to rest. On my poppy I have quilted the words Pride and Honour to reflect all this.

In the hills and contours I have quilted the words of the poem by William Blake, This Green and Pleasant Land.

None of my quilts on display are winners, and that's ok, I enter as without the quilts ere would not be a show, I never expect to win, but some how, this challenge quilt made me anxious, it is so different to,all the others on show, there will be those who get it, and those who don't, and tonight I'm ok with that.

Now it's time to go eat!

Tuesday 14 August 2012


My phone that is! It was there, I knew it was there, I just don't remember picking it up when I left. When I went back to check, it was. ... Gone!

so I do have a new phone and sim card, same number for those of you that have it. I just don't have any of yours, so if you are trying to get hold of me, I,won't know it's you, so please give me a clue or send me your number so I can update this really awful cheap phone I'm now suffering with!

Thanks for understanding :)

See you at Festival, find me on stand A46 and B36-38 come and say Hi!

Sunday 12 August 2012

Best of British

As the closing ceremony continues on the telly ... lets reflect a little

today it seems only fitting I was on my own cultural Olympic marathon of sorts ...

you know me ... when I get in my groove ...

so I started this morning ... with Lynne's Fat Jacks ...

and Summersville!

Yes I cut into the monstrous pile of gorgeousness!

I think Lucie was being subliminal when she designed this,

everyone should by Summersville imho!

and so, after a few hours ... I have The Best of British ...

Fat Jack Blocks designed by Lynne of Lilys Quilts, Derbyshire

Summersville designed by Lucie Summers, Suffolk (for Moda)

Pieced (and very soon to be quilted) by Me, Lincolnshire

72 x 84

British designers ... you're the best! 

Wednesday 8 August 2012

The British are Coming

the minute I saw those fabrics on the FatQuarter Shop website, I KNEW I HAD to have them! 

they duly arrived and I pondered what I was going to do with them...

and so whilst I sorted, stroked, folded and categorised my hoard in the studio, they got separated and 'filed' ...

and then over the weekend I got my edition of FatQuarterly 10 ... and I KNEW what I was going to do with them!

so i rushed back into the 'store' and grabbed them back out, I knew where they were, I'd only just put them there!  and on Saturday night a cut  ...

and Sunday ... a lovely pleasant Summers Day ... I stitched ...

and I quilted ...

and I stitched some more  ...

and finished this in no time at all ...

sometimes fabric just speaks, hell, it yells buy me!

you can see why, can't you!

Thanks to Kristin Danis (kd-quilts) for the pattern and the FatQuarterly team for giving me the inspiration to do something quick, easy, and done in a day!

and it felt soooooo Good to be back in my groove!

Monday 6 August 2012

Shamed I tell Ya!

Whilst I was in the middle of my Festival madness a call from Laura Jane came, she needed a particular colour and was short in her stash.  She's got a very organised stash!  Always willing to share the load I rummaged, and trust me, it was a rummage, and found some beauts for her ...

I have more red than I thought, but having been inspired by her organisation I felt it was my duty to gently fold these reds up and put them back tidily ... honestly! 

and she had been very kind in a recent post to link to some inspiration too!

so they sat on the side patiently waiting for me to finish off my festival madness...

and this is the aftermath!

now I will say if you are of a very nervous disposition you may want to just give up now and go watch the Olympics ...

as well as tidying up this mess, it was time to tame some of the fabrics that had been building up and taking root in the studio, you know, recent acquisitions (and not so recent, so last year darling!) and the stuff that had been dragged out and not put back!

You see when I got my wonderful studio, my old sewing/quilting space became a fabric pantry ... or for some a minor shopping spree!

Prepare for full disclosure of the mystical stash ...

this is the view through the window ...

not bad?  yeah right!

OK, not pretty is it? 

looks pretty organised as you walk through the door, but really the table is the last thing you see after you fall over the overflowing box of mahoosive backing pieces ...

oh, and my jam jar storage too!

now some of those drawers are pretty organised ...

yes, I might be a bit of a pre-cut junkie!

but others, well, they leave a lot to be desired!

and for the very feint hearted, look away now!

yep, I told you to look away, a whole drawer of brown!

So, I stroked, and smoothed and folded ....

and it felt good!

in fact that's about ALL I could do on Friday evening ...

and I found I had some wonderful fabrics ...

and a lot of gorgeous greens (I can feel a quilt coming on!)

so, there you have it, My Stash, finally revealed for all to see ...

(for those of you in gobsmacked shock, it's time to pick up the jaw,  this is more than 20 years of fabric obsession, note to self ... needs vs want!)

and I am slowly folding, and sorting ... but I need to do the drawers (and make room)  before I can do the other stuff.

There is one dilemma though, I know there is stuff in those drawers I've started and am likely never to finish, let alone have the inclination to even attempt them any more ...

what would you do? 

Sunday 5 August 2012

Festival Finish

I finished my Festival challenge quilt, but after so many requests I thought I'd let you know just what a monumental effort it was to finish it. It probably didn't help that I started piecing it on the Sunday of the delivery week! Ooops!

I had a customer quilt loaded that needed to be done by Wednesday, quilting group on the Monday afternoon (precious hanging sleeve stitching time for the other quilts), Tuesday I met up with Di at the LQS,and finished said quilting. so,it was realistically Wednesday before I really started the piecing. thankfully I did already have the paper plan on the wall and the fabrics pretty much chosen, numbered, so it really was just getting down to it!

By late,Thursday morning I had finished the piecing - phew! quilting should be a doddle right? It was all going swimmingly, until I was half way through the quilting and discovered a piecing error - bugger! You know that sinking feeling, the one where you think there is no way out of this? Hmm, I wasn't going to be beaten by this, so formulated a plan, that involved more freezer paper, and some silk thread and set to with needle and trusty thimble. It took longer than I had hoped but, got myself back on course. However, I didn't finish quilting it until 1am in the morning. I really couldn't stay up any longer, I could barely see, let alone sew binding and a hanging sleeve on. So off I toddled for some much needed sleep. Except I woke up at 5.30 am! and couldn't get back to sleep! Aaaaaah! resigned to,the fact, kettle on, I grabbed my cuppa and headed out to the studio to do battle with that damn quilt.

so it's now Friday, the last day for delivery in Birmingham, and I'm running on 4 hours of sleep, several cups of tea, and some very encouraging emails from the only person outside my family that had actually seen it, of sorts. the last stitch was put in at 10.30 am, but there was still labels and packaging of all three to sort out. I'm in the car and setting off down the road to Birmingham by 11.40. Not bad, but still up to 2 hours there, and then I have to drive all the way home again! well, knackered no longer describes how I felt, and with a quick stop to avail myself of the facilities at the drop off place and grab some lunch at the Tamworth Services I was home again by 4pm. completely spent.

was it worth it? Yes, I think so, only time will tell ... So whilst you're at Festival of Quilts, please,look out for my Carolina Christmas quilt in the Traditional section, Made in Cherry in the Contemporary quilts ... And my vision of Britain ... what it means to me ...

this quilt really is very personal to me, if you are heading to Festival, please let me know what you think, I shall be lurking and eavesdropping to see how it affects the onlookers - I'm very curious as to,how people will view it. I'm also interested to see how it sits with all the other entries.

So not content with the trip to Birmingham on the Friday, we went on a little road trip Saturday ... This was the view coming home ...

Home Monday night, and then off to Leeds and back to drop off a different quilt with a friend for her talk. and I got to see her quilting robot working too! I was hoping to go back to work for a rest, but it didn't work out that way either!

needless to,say I've had a very relaxing weekend, I hope you're not too exhausted reading about my madness. and to think I may even have managed to blog from my iPad (hopefully!)

there's plenty more madness to come!

Saturday 4 August 2012

In the Frame Purse Swap

Last month saw the deadline for posting our purses to our secret swap partners ...

and this is what I sent to my partner ...

I love these clocks, I hope she does too ... so retro and full of memories

I filled it with goodies but I don't want to spoil the surprise for my partner, at the time of writing she hadn't received it

I get so caught up in stalking and making for my partner, I often forget what I've seen in the groups of what everyone has made, and that a package will be heading my way too!

Imagine my complete surprise when this absolutely beautiful purse arrived here ...

Thank you so much Fiona (Poppy Makes) this is truly beautiful, and has been in my handbag ever since it arrived! 

The embroidery on it is exquisite too!

lots of lovely goodies, lip balm, moisturiser, Scottish soap, and wonderful hand cream, I have been very spoiled indeed!