Sunday, 11 March 2018

Chilly Sewing

Looking back to my last post how silly of me to suggest Spring was in the air, how wrong could I be?

To be fair, here in Ayr we (whispers) had no snow! Cold, yes, but no lying snow - we are so fortunate to be sheltered by the Isle of Arran although of course other parts of Ayrshire not a million miles away suffered the snowy disruption that much of the UK did. We did for a brief moment in time share the fuel, bread and milk shortages, but really nothing too dramatic.

So on those cold days and with my OH away for a little longer than planned due to air traffic delays (weather related) I got on with some sewing.

My Bella Sampler, still in three sections but now has wadding and backing cut into three appropriate sections also. Quilting will commence in the fullness of time.

The Irish Chain quilt that I shared with you has grown slightly in real life and much more on paper.

I showed you my original plan - just nine blocks.

But I decided to explore the options of adding in lots of LV blocks and have come up with this option - 25 blocks! It'll be a slow burner as I work through my scraps cutting squares when I feel like it and sewing blocks whenever. I intend to enjoy the process.

 I also worked on an updated version of an old class project, Topsy. My original class sample was made using Christmas colours so for this new version I chose a Lewis and Irene range called Island Girl that reminded me of Disney's Moana. When finished, it will of course go to a small person I know. (wink)
These photos show my progress, it also has been layered up and awaits quilting!!

I do hope eventually to add this version to my original pattern and offer it for sale but I seem to work pretty slowly these days so it might be a while yet...........

Sprinkled in to my sewing there were a couple of gifts, a rope bowl which was very well received.] and I joined with my Bee Buddies to make a couple of baby quilts for another Bee Grannie to be (!!)

I attended my first meeting of the Ayrshire Modern Quilters' Guild - it is held in the most super accommodation right on the platform of Kilmarnock train station - the old waiting room has been beautifully converted into a really comfortable multi purpose room, bright and cheerful and through a connecting door is the equally pleasant cafe. Genius.

And finally on the sewing front I have continued to make (2) my Attic Window cushions in Amanda's classes. As I will miss the final two classes I ramped up my progress on these and have completed one. I absolutely love the fabric I chose for this project but on completion I wish I had used stronger tones for my "window sills"...........always learning.

This is cushion #1 all layered up and quilted (YES) - I always add the back sections to the front and quilt as one before binding the short ends and folding, enveloped style. Makes for a really luxurious cushion.
And here is an actual finish!!

And finally, here in the UK it's Mother's Day. Not only will I be lucky enough to spend time today with both my "children" and their spouses, but we will all be celebrating my grand daughter Ava's 6th birthday - she is excited beyond belief about her birthday and the excitement will continue on as she is getting my old Janome 3/4 sized machine, a sewing basket full of goodies and a promise of sewing lessons from Grandma. We'll see how that goes.............

Have a great Sunday wherever you are.xx

Wednesday, 31 January 2018


Well hasn't January been a long month? I think everybody yearns for it to be over and it sometimes feels like you are climbing uphill but once you get to the top you can see February and March ahead and dare I say it, Spring??

I hope you all managed to avoid the flu bug that has been so prevalent here. Our house had the bug early in December so we felt smug and well as we approached Christmas only to have our Christmas Day scuppered when my poor DIL went down with it - all was not lost though. With half a day's notice and good old Aldi I pulled together a Christmas meal and laughed at how often I have spent hours in the past making lists for the big meal. I scored a half price boxed turkey, nestling in greaseproof paper and found an embossed card within with cooking instructions that alerted me to its built in thermometer - its what?? A first for me, it turned out great and I believe it was the award winning bird of the year, lol.
The family managed to re-convene by the end of Christmas week although numbers were still a little depleted.

Moving into January and turning to sewing again was brightened by the delivery of this book.

I haven't started anything from it yet but have my eye on the Highland Cow within. The layout and instructions in this book are excellent and I really look forward to starting.....I just need to finish up some other stuff first before I allow myself. Such discipline!!

Early in the month a friend asked if I could come up with something suitable for her Aunt's impending 100th birthday. There wasn't much time so I reckoned a simple cushion with some machine embroidery might fit the bill. I used some Kaffe shot cotton and purchased an embroidery design which I stitched out in two shades of gold. The finished cushion was well received by my friend and her Aunt Jean.

The weather in January has been pretty wintery so a great excuse to hole up in the sewing room. I was in just the mood for storage and so far have made two (I plan three in total) of these great storage pods. Pattern is by Beth Studley. I am making this for my grand daughter to help contain her growing collection of little plastic figures, you know the kind of thing, Playmobil, Lego, Shopkins etc

For my own storage I made one of these little storage basket, an old favourite by Pink Penguin. They take next to no time to knock up and I use them inside drawers to store haberdashery items like zips, lace, cords etc.

Now the quilt I showed you in my last post, The Bella Skills Builder - well I finished all the blocks and have added borders. I plan to QAYG in three big sections and now have the wadding and backing organised. As you know the front is totally made from solids and I was really pleased to find a very large duvet cover in the Ikea sale in quite a bold geometric design and also in the colours I used on the front, pretty much. For those of you who have not seen this tip before, consider buying a duvet cover to use for backings as you usually end up with twice as much fabric to use. And I have four pillowcases as a bonus. No photos at the moment but once I get going on the quilting I'll remember to take some.

I have also returned to class this month and am working on an Attic Window cushion that is taking shape nicely. Photos in next post, I promise.
Lastly, I made a start on a small Irish Chain quilt using up scraps. I have had it in the back of my mind since I saw this post by RedPepperQuilts. What I particularly love about Rita's tutorial is her plan for pressing seams so that all of them can interlock. Genius.
However, I decided to plan a smaller quilt, so far anyway. The blocks are actually making up quite quickly so I might expand. And although I am using scraps I am keeping them tamed in colour bands.
This is my mock up on EQ7 -

And this is my progress so far -

I hope January has been productive for you too. Roll on February.


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