Sunday 28 October 2012

Ding dong bell a quilt is finished!

In August I started making a small lapquilt for a friend who wanted to give something a bit different to her niece as a wedding gift!

I was happy to oblige and you may have seen some progress on the strip pieced quilt she chose from book Quilting Modern by Jacquie Gering and Katie Pedersen - the quilt is called Fractured!  Normally I like strip piecing as it is fairly mindless action - pick up a strip, any strip and sew it down - your eyes seem to be drawn to the next colour and you can just sew happily for hours!

Well something intervened - something with four legs, a tail and an irresistible wee face - which meant progress was a lot slower than normal!  But now it is finished and I am glad to say handed over to my friend...

Here is how it grew....

Here is how my four-legged distraction grew too...5 months now!

Could you resist this?  Ok Hadley I know you can....

Goodies Galore !

I can't tell you how thrilled I am about two parcel which arrived recently chez moi!

First to arrive was my pincushion from the lovely Sheila - I may have mentioned that Sheila and I invited some friends to join us in a bee called Bee a Brit Stingy !  We wanted to use our stash for this bee hence the name!

Well we don't start officially until January 2013 as we are all beavering away with lots of things and for me it means I can keep to only 5 (!!!!) bees as the first bee I joined - Sew & Bee Happy! - finishes in November!  Eek!

Anyway to get to know each other a little better we decided on a small, quick swap - a pincushion!

Well I made this one which has arrived at Karen's house

The top is hand appliqued using some new carboard pieces called flat jewels I think!  It is quite big so shouldn't go amiss....I got a bit carried away!  When I first made it there was something not quite right - so I added those vintage buttons in the middle which helped ploof it up and weight it down a bit.

And Sheila made me this gorgeous one 

Not so much a pincushion but she must know I dither about deciding what to do so it is an action cube with choices of quilt, pin, sew and unpick !   Then it has lots of pockets - which did come full of sweet goodies - seen here!  All seem to have vanished now however!  And a wee fabric historical note at the bottom reminds we both started out using Debbie Mumm fabric in the 80s!

Thank you so much Sheila and my apologies for not showing it off before now!

My second parcel is my tote from the Mouthy Stitches 2 Swap

I showed you what I sent has arrived safely and my partner seems pleased - in fact she has been very nice about it!

I can now show you the letter 'K' which was hiding behind the button as it has gone to Kerry who blogs here!

I came across her or rather her quilt at the NEC Festival of Quilts when I went round with My Mouthy Stitches 2 Swap Mama Susan and took a photo of this quilt...Kerry then claimed it as hers as I didn't know who had made it...the quilts were not labelled.

I took the photo for Archie of course and it is the only one I have blogged about from the FoQ lazy blogger that I am.  I have just been over to Kerry's blog and she has entered it into the Blogger's Quilt Festival - you can go and vote for it!  There is a tail tale attached so take a hanky!

That was mine sent, but I got mine received a couple of days back but have been keeping it a little secret as the lovely May who sent it to me, only put it up on Flickr after I received it and I wanted everyone to have the chance to see it before I laid claim to it!

So here it is - welcome to Moominland!

I love Moomins and although they didn't feature in my mosaic May knows my weakness from her bee the Star of Africa - where we make blocks reflecting the country we come from.  May is from Finland the home of Tove Jansson and the Moomintrolls!

I love my tote and the moomin bits that came with it!  I even bought a Moomin notebook to live in my tote today!   I am a happy, happy bunny!

Various rumours may have been aired that I am at times like Little My - the feisty little girl with hands on hips but I can assure you that is almost not true!

 I am hoping for more Moomin magic as I am Queen Bee in the Star of Africa bee and have asked for a fictional character - I'm hoping for Moominmama!   Eventually I think I will need the whole set! 

Oh my what a long post - wake up and congrats you have got to the end!

Friday 26 October 2012

Secret Stitching Revealed

Hi there do you remember me?

Sorry I have been doing some worrying and some secret stitching!

I am worrying because I am in the fabulous Mouthy Stitches 2 Swap - the tote! and I have to tell you the standard is sky high!  Not a duff tote among them ....

And I didn't want to let the side down - oh no!

And I have a fabulous partner - no can't tell you who she is until she gets her parcel - but I am in awe of her work, so not much pressure there then!

So I have been worrying, prevaricating, sweating and sewing and just before the bell goes I have finished the tote and keyfob extra....I just hope she likes it but if not she can always return it to me...?

The main picture shows Carl the Cameleon - a design by Joanna at Shape Moth which you can buy here!  Not for the fainthearted with about 60 pieces in it - argh!  I'm not usually a fan of foundation piecing and I got very friendly with Mr Seam Ripper but I got there!  

I used compressed foam instead of wadding as the inner layer and did a bit of spiral FMQ to echo Carl's tail!

The reverse side is a strip pieced leaf - with the zip as the spine - broke two needles going over the end of that zip as it was designed for a coat and ended with a stopper rather than the usual fabric bits!  It opens up to a generous pocket - below right - so plenty of room!  I echo quilted the leaf in variegated green thread!  Had to get my head round doing that without stitching it to the pocket!

The extra is a keyfob in this swap and I thought a wee co-ordinating strip pieced  leaf coin purse would go well!  Believe me I was making this up as I went along - but plans don't really work for me I'm more disorganised  organic!

The outside is a bit loud!

I thought the inside should reflect a different mood so I took my Carnival templates bought from Katy and swapped the squares for HSTs and ended up with a star!  The big button hides an initial - belonging to my partner - but I can't give the game away yet ....can I?  I then used Lu Summers' porthole magic to frame my star!  

Hey presto!  one tote bag finished!  Phew!  Final deadline for posting is tomorrow!

Monday 15 October 2012

I might have bought some fabric...

Which might look like this...

For those of you who are fabric junkies the deets are as follows left to right:

Kukla Meadow in Bright ( Robert Kaufman )
Small Chevron in Tone on Tone Yellow ( Riley Blake )
Kona in Aloe ( Robert Kaufman )
Lady Bugs in Apple ( Free Spirit )
Hand Picked Daisies in Grass ( Free Spirit )
Bella in Mint ( Moda )
Specimen in Dream ( Free Spirit )
Circle Cross in Green ( Free Spirit )
Bella in Pistachio ( Moda )
Trunks in Gray ( Riley Blake )
Honeycomb in Sunglow ( Free Spirit )
Josephine's Bouquet in Meadow ( Rowan )
Heath in Chartreuse ( Alexander Henry )
Marguerite Dot in Green( Riley Blake )

Don't get all excited now all three pics are of the same fabrics!  I just love them so!

I am getting addicted to making my own bundles and it is far too easy to do this at pinkcastlefabrics.  Sadly I am not sponsored by them indeed I am probably responsible for a trade deficit in fabric between the UK and US...okay I may not be the only one!  There  are a few of you out there!  You know who you are!!

Tuesday 9 October 2012

Fourth quarter Finish-a-long!

I did so badly last quarter I  have all my third quarter projects still to complete!

That is

The Friendship Garden quilt!

My Fright Nite quilt!

My churndash/granny squares quilt

Here they are together!

Hope I can do at least one!

Sunday 7 October 2012

Squirreling away!

 Today I spent quite a bit of time making this little chap...

for Jen, who is making a book for her children to keep them busy spotting animals on car journeys or at the zoo.  

This little chap is flying the flag for Scotland in the Star of Africa bee but he is to be found in quite a bit of Europe too - just not in much of England now and certainly not where we live in West Sussex.  His American cousin is doing  better down here instead and is a regular visitor to my garden.

Hope Jen's kids like him and get the chance to see him one day.

Have to say he turned out a bit fatter than I had intended but I think he is getting ready for winter and fattening up before his long sleep!  Ahh !  Lucky him!

Friday 5 October 2012

oh pants!

Why pants?  Not really sure but better than other words I would otherwise be tempted to say!  You may of course insert your own personal favourite!

I thought with everyone settled into a new routine I could get back to stitching in peace and blogging more than just the occasional post but Tummybugitis caught up with me and was determined to strike me down!

Nothing much achieved therefore on Monday or Tuesday - nothing you want to know about!  TMI!!

Anyway Wednesday I began to feel better and yesterday even more so!  I got to the sewing machine and got several Bee Blocks done!  Hurrah!

Two for Emily for the Modern Stitches Bee

I just adore the wee star she asked for....wish I had properly read her instructions as she would have liked more if possible....would have been delighted to oblige!

Two for Jude and beeblessed!

One for Benta!  Poor thing she is getting this block for her Silver Wedding Anniversary quilt - hence the grey background!  But in our Star of Africa Bee he represents Scotland as he is of course Angus the Scottie Dog or Scottish Terrier!  Do you remember one with a pronounced Scottish accent in Lady and the Tramp??

I haven't been half hearted in this - honest- by missing out the corners!  Benta is making interlocking stars and each one will have a middle representing different countries.  The other stars will be filling in the gaps...

One started for Jen - so sorry Jen (also in the Star of Africa Bee and due in August - oops!)  I offered Angus to either Benta or Jen and Benta got in there!

Then I thought of another wee Scottish animal - well not only Scottish - but in the UK this normally timid little chap fares better than his American cousin who has out-competed him in the South! 

 I was having cold feet about him and whether he would look like he was supposed to but the lovely Helen urged me on!  I am hoping this rough cut out gives you an idea of what it is!?? well supposed to be!

Jen actually asked for animals - you would think by my past blocks of Hamish the Highland Bull and Nessie that there are only animals in Scotland - no offence up North this is NOT true!  

Jen wants to make a book for her kids to amuse them at the zoo or on car journeys - she is going to ask them to find the animals IRL!  Nessie was tempting I can tell you but I relented!

Only that one to finish off, some refining of a granny or two for Wendi (blocks too small - grrrr) and Lucy's feather block to do - which I am really looking forward to...might have to make some for myself!  I can't believe that it is still the first week of the month and I have got so many bee blocks done ok one of these is overdue but even so....

Grr again as I have just realised I forgot the siggy blocks - ah well pride comes before and all that.

I am queen again this time in the Star of Africa Bee and I have asked for fictional characters from beloved books !  I am thinking the blocks will be the front cover and the siggy blocks - as I have now asked for long thin ones - can be the spine of my very own international library!  And I must make sure I read them all!  This Bee is proving very educational in a fun and chatty sort of way!


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