Monday, 31 December 2012

Last Quilt of 2012

I have been working on the super zig quilt for a while. I finished the front quickly but was undecided about the backing. I had enough rectangles left to make one zigzag stripe for the back and decide to team it with some Kona steel, a departure from my usual pretty florals but I am really pleased with it.
I quilted it simply, just following the zig zag. I am glad I did it myself but the basting was murder on my knees. I only have half the cartilage in one of my knees due to a series of injuries and operations and kneeling is ridiculously painful. I am definitely getting Debbie to quilt the next ones for me, at least until I have a house with a craft room and a huge, quilt sized table to work on!
I finished the binding this afternoon while watching sound of music - binding and watching tele bliss!!! Well off to welcome in the new year now - have a great one!

Friday, 28 December 2012


Hello Blog, sorry I have been missing for so long, it is hard to keep up with working, crafting and blogging, especially in the busy festive season, but here I am again with a look back over 2012.

For me there have been two crafty highlights of 2012. First up joining the London Modern Quilt Guild which has been amazing. I have met a terrific bunch of people, had loads of fun, been to some brilliant talks and workshops (Lu Summers, Tula Pink, Liberty), took part in a mini quilt exhibition in John Lewis, been totally inspired by the creativity and originality of the members and had a great time helping Annie at the knitting and stitching show and at the opening of her shop.  Thanks to all the members of the LMQG for making 2012 such a great year for me.

My other crafty highlight was joining Bee a Lonestar(burst), totally the best bee I have ever been in! Another funny and welcoming bunch of ladies who made this Bee my all time favourite. I learned so much about paper-piecing and really developed my skills, looking back I am astonished to find I made 34 of these blocks. My favourites are the rainbow blocks and the pink and yellow blocks with the grey background. This Bee was definitely a challenge, keeping up with four of these blocks a month was tough, paper piecing was hard to learn and I often felt like dropping out but I am so glad I stuck with it, in fact I might have even shed a tear as I finished my last block.

As well as Lone Starburst I participated in way to many other bees

Made a load more bags

Finished some quilts

still have a few projects that I am working on

and did a bunch of other crafty stuff

Overall I would say that 2012 has been a busy and productive year for me as well as being lots of fun. I am sad to see 2012 draw to a close but wish you all a very happy new year and hope it will be as happy and productive as 2012 was.

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Bee Blocks, Bags and Quilt Tops

Sorry I have been MIA for some time. I decided that I was spending way too much time on the internet, what with blogging, reading blogs, being active on flickr and hours on pinterest and other sites I was spending about 4 hours on the computer for every hour crafting. Not good. Also hours on the computer = ridiculous amounts of fabric purchased and starting multiple projects to add to my already too long list of things to do. So I decided I needed to focus more on craft and less on the computer. (I hope that doesn't sound too worthy I fully intend to go back to my old ways as soon as I have some stuff completed).

So this is what I have been up to.

I used the gorgeous Perfectly Perched fabric that I was lucky enough to win from The Village Haberdashery to make this quilt top using the Super-zig quilt pattern from Monica Solario-Snow.

I used my jelly roll of delicious Marmalade to make this Over and Under Quilt top from the book Scrap Basket Sensations.
Finished my Art Student Tote (the perfect bag for Autumn)


I made more Bee blocks

And a BOM block
Used some fabric scraps to make this Gum Drop Pillow (thanks Ruth for the pattern).
and finally..........
Finished the swoon!!! (more about that later)

Feeling much better about my crafting / computer balance now. Right off to spend a couple of hours on the computer now.

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Thank you

Thank you for all your helpful comments about my swoon quilt. I decided to go with some more solids and bought a bunch but when they arrived today I realised they are not going to work either so the Swoon and I are no longer friends remain at an impasse. I have spent my whole months fabric budget and spent quite a lot of the food budget on fabric as well so I will need to wait until November now before moving forward. Honestly how can I have so much fabric and none of it be right for this quilt???

So anyhow I have gone back to the stars and made this one for Lyanna . It was so easy for me to put it together it almost made me laugh. I may have mentioned that these blocks were terrible when I started and I nearly left the Bee, I can hardly believe how quickly I can make them now.

I also got some more blocks from my lovely bee-mates and laid them all out on my bed to look at them. I love them so much!

 I am thinking of making either a rainbow stripe or one big rainbow star on the back. Do you think it needs sashing? I am thinking sashing but I also like them close together. What do you think?

Hope you are having a good week.

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Swoon Trouble

I have been working hard on getting my swoon quilt finished these last couple of weeks. Trouble is I just don't love it. I adore the pattern, it was on my list of quilts to make for so long. I spent ages collecting the fabrics for it and although I like all the fabrics individually and thought they would look good together they just refuse to play nicely. I am really disappointed because I so want to love this quilt but it just isn't working. Worse still I can't see what I need to do to make it work. I am very frustrated with it.

SIGH!!! So now I am in a dilemma over what to do.

Option 1 - abandon it, stick all the blocks in the cupboard and ignore them. Not my preferred option but then at least I could get on with the other projects I am itching to make. This bundle of gorgeous marmalade arrived in the week and I am desperate to start on it.

Option 2 - remake some of the blocks. This is what I think I will probably do. Trouble is I cannot for the life of me see how to make it better. Some of the fabrics just look wrong. At first I thought the addition of a solid to some of the blocks would make it work, and it has helped but the blocks with two different fabrics still either look too busy or too similar to me. It is hard to see this on the photo above so I made a mosaic that better shows the problem.

The blocks that are causing me trouble are the three corner blocks. I just don't think they work. I am thinking of remaking them in different fabrics. Probably not solids but I am not sure what to choose.  I need a fresh pair of eyes to look at them. What do you think? Any suggestions would be very welcome as I feel totally stuck on this one.

Sunday, 30 September 2012

Birthday Present Part 2

After a few delays (buying the wrong size zipper, not knowing my left from my right - eek!) I managed to finish the second part of Jenny's birthday present. I used the Inset Zip Clutch from Michelle Patterns to make this echo clutch.

Then on Saturday we went to the V&A to see the ballgowns exhibition which was just gorgeous. I ooooohed and aaaahed at every dress they were so pretty. Sadly we weren't allowed to take photos in the exhibition but I did snap this one of the museum when we were having lunch in the gorgeous sunshine. I just love the V&A.

It was such a beautiful day we went for a long walk through green park and then up to Soho for afternoon tea at Soho's Secret Tea Room I do love a bit of tea and cake (and scones and clotted cream and little sandwiches with no crusts) bliss!!

In sewing news I finished the September block for Muriel over at Bee Europa, just in time.

Then I started a Liberty Dress for my niece's 1st birthday. It is so cute it makes me want to be one again! I hope to finish it tomorrow night.

I also cut out all the fabric for my Fat Quarter Shop Designer Mystery Block of the Month and hope to get it finished too this week.

Seriously, is there anyway to keep cats off fabric???

Hope you all had a good weekend.

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Echo Bag

So this is the bag I desperately want to keep  made as a birthday present for my friend. I used the last of my lovely echo fabric. I had a hard time letting it go but I have already made an echo quilt so I thought I should use it for the bag as this is totally her colour. I keep reminding myself these days that I can't buy/keep ALL the fabric and to be honest once my stash gets to a certain stage it freaks me out and I think "Oh my god, I have too much fabric, I have got to use it all up before I buy anymore!!"

I used the Go Anywhere pattern from Anna at Noodlehead. I love that it has back, front and internal pockets but I wish I had made the bag a bit bigger. Nevermind it looks lovely I just like giant bags so I can carry lots of stuff around (like fabric and interfacing and craft books). 
 Apologies for the slightly dodgy photos, I took them at night after I finished the bag and before I wrapped it up, my kitchen was the only place light enough to get a halfway decent photo.

This is the back pocket (I promise it was not that wonky, it is the way I made it lean so the handles would stay up). I added a little keychain thingy inside as I always like to be able to find my keys easily.
 My friend loved it so I was glad I made it for her and will be content with admiring the lovely echo fabric when she uses it.
In other news I joined a couple of swaps hosted by the super-lovely ladies from my lone starburst bee. I had kind of made up my mind that I would take a break from bees and swaps so I could concentrate  on my own projects but I couldn't resist joining The Usual Suspects and then Sew Sew Modern. I'm really excited about these swaps and the best thing is the mailing date is January 2013 so I have plenty of time (remind me I said this when I am finishing my swap items the night before I need to post them).
Hope you are all having a good week. Now I have used up some of my stash I can buy more :)  I am so glad it is nearly payday,  I have a load of fabric in my shopping baskets at various on-line fabric shops and am just waiting until payday to press the purchase button - Yay!!!

Sunday, 23 September 2012

Fabulous Fabric

I had a wonderful day today. Danielle and I went to Charlotte's to help Annie fold fat quarters for her booth at the knitting and stitching show. It was so lovely to see so many different fabrics, and so tempting! Lots of the fabrics were more beautiful than they look online, there are so many that I really want to buy now. Look at all this fabric yumminess


If you are coming to the knitting and stitching show do stop by Annie's booth and say hi, it is number J22 The Village Haberdashery

As an added bonus, not only did we have boxes of wonderful fabric to play with, we also had Charlotte's adorable Vizsla puppy, Katie. Isn't she just the most gorgeous puppy ever!!! Even though I love my two kitties I still wish I could have a dog


I also did some sewing but as it is a present for a friend I want to keep it a suprise until I give it to her tomorrow. Can you guess what it is?

Starts with a B, ends with a G and has an A in the middle (I am so predictable!).

Have a great week :)

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

I decided....

OK so I still haven't decided if I am going to brave another swoon quilt or stick to the easy lattice pattern for my red and aqua quilt. Thanks for all your comments, I am really glad to know that I am not the only person on the planet who hates HSTs and finds the swoon blocks tiresome to make (I do really love them when they are finished though).

All is not lost though, I did make a decision, I decided I needed this supercute Momo Oh Deer fabric to join my red and aqua stash. 

Tiny deer and birds in aqua and red, you can't go wrong with a critter in my book.

Whatever pattern I eventually decide on I know I am going to love this quilt :)

Hope you are all having a great week.

Friday, 14 September 2012

LMQG Give away

Do you want to win this cute bundle of Kitchy Kitchen Fabric???

Of course you do! Hop on over to the LMQG blog for your chance to win.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Decisions, decisions

At the begining of the summer I bought lots of Laurie Wisbrun Brrr! fabric with these adorable polar bears.

 Now I love this fabric and I don't care that I am a grown woman and far too old to have a polar bear quilt, I am going to make myself a quilt out of this fabric. I just need to decide what quilt to make. I saw this quilt over on Flickr and loved it so I decided to make a swoon with polar bears and combine it with some red and aqua Melody Miller typewriters. I was so sure it was what I was going to make that I got a load of other fabric and made a red and aqua stack.

Trouble is I am already making a Swoon quilt. I am up to block 5 and I am not really enjoying it very much. I am not sure why, too much cutting, fiddly HSTs and flying geese that I can't get my head around. I have made 5 blocks but I don't love making them. I know I will love the finished quilt but I just don't enjoy making the blocks.

I had a look around blogland and saw this quilt and I thought it would be ideal. Quick to make, big sections of fabric to show off the prints, little cornerstones, perfect for polar bear heads or flowers and decided I would make this one instead of the swoon.

Last night I was looking at the swoon one again and I started to think I liked it better than the lattice quilt but can I make myself make another 9 swoon blocks (plus the 4 I need to finish the Swoon I am working on)? Will it take me ages and ages? Should I just do one block a month and not hurry? Will I hate doing it? Should I choose the easier option? Will I be happy with it? It is the fabric I love and the lattice quilt will show the fabric off well but will I always think "I wish I had made a Polar bear and typewriter swoon quilt"? Or is it just a mad idea to combine polar bears and typewriters?

What do you think? Maybe you have a better idea. I am very confused. Any suggestions gratefully recieved!

Monday, 10 September 2012


Well I had a bit of a blogging break there. A combination of lots of things to do, some stressful personal stuff to sort out and going back to work (sob! sob!). Anyhow this is going to be a picture post to update you on what I have been up to.

Went to the festival of quilts and did a Beanstalks quilt class with the lovely Tula Pink

Beanstalks in progress
Went to a LMQG talk by Tula where she shared some of her amazing quilts
 and talked to us about fabric design. I am in love with this drawing

Went to a wonderful talk by Sholto Durmlanrig (designer of the Bloomsbury Collection for Liberty Life Style fabric). I was so focused on looking at everything I totally forgot to take any pictures after taking this one of a display quilt (it was on a table so looks a bit wierd)

 Made a bunch of Quilt Blocks and some other stuff

And got my lovely grey and yellow quilt back from Debbie. I LOVE Debbie and I love, love love this quilt.

My fave Joel Dewberry Aviary for the backing

Have a great week everyone, I will endeavour to blog more often.
This week I may be making a bag.........

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Yet more stars

Not a huge amount of sewing this week, I seem to have slipped right into holiday mode and am lacking in motivation to do anything much at all, except for these star blocks. I thought I would give myself a break from making these but I seem to have a strange fixation and can't stop. This one is for Leslie who wants low volume and loves Lotta prints, luckily I had some fabric left from my echo quilt that was just the right size.

Then I made some more rainbow stars, I love them and need to make some more.

I also got my radio way quilt back from Debbie and have been busy making binding and hand stitching it in place. Summer is not really the right time to sit with a big quilt on your lap while hand stitching the binding so progress is slow. I really love the quilting Debbie has done, it looks amazing.

Hope you are all having a wonderful Summer.