Saturday 31 December 2011

You CAN teach an old dog...............

Although I started my blog back in 2009, things really took off this year - when I started it I don't think I really knew what I was doing - so what changed? Well I looked back at my posts and I reckon it all started when I found other blogs.
One of the first ones that made a big impression was Pink Penguin where I learned from the delightful Ayumi that making small stuff is FUN.

Another HUGE influence in blogland, especially here in the UK has been Lynne from Lily's Quilts - Lynne needs no introduction, you'll find her button on nearly every quilting blog. But because of her amazing energy and enthusiasm Brit Quilters were conceived and I learned about online friendship and swapping. I have met some great people scattered all around the world and consider myself privileged to count them as bloggy pals.
 I entered my first ever swap and made this -
 and received this beauty, from Alison, at Little Island Quilting.
In another swap, I received these beautiful items from Svetlana, at
S.O.T.A.K.Handmade - when I was looking at the mugrugs I was intrigued at the method Svetlana had used to stitch on the binding. I learned to apply  binding in the normal way but instead of handstitching it down on the back, you can machine stitch in the ditch on the right side, never come across this before.
Another thing I learned was from Kerry at verykerryberry 
Her advice was to use single fold binding on smaller items like mugrugs and what a difference this makes, so much less bulky.
Through my re-energised blogging, I discovered Flickr where you can while away many hours looking at quilts, joining groups, and chatting to like-minded folks.
I learned that red and aqua go together!
....and orange and aqua.........
Just recently, I learned from the afore-mentioned Alison, that you can actually free machine quilt with the feed dogs UP -- I tried it, and it worked. Who would have known?
I learned that hexagons were not in fact, the work of the devil and became rather obsessed by them.
A little behind my original schedule, I completed the final 5 hexies for my Hexalong project, yesterday!!

So even after quilting for a good few years, and teaching it to others, I also continue to learn from all you brilliant and generous bloggers. I try to pass on to my classes much of what I am learning.
I had fun this year running an online Mystery Quilt - still not too late to have a go altho' the mystery is no longer there - check out the page at the top of this blog.
Of course, blogland is a bit of escapism for us all - many of us post stuff that we all have in common and don't always include the realities of life that we come up against every day - sad times & happy times, we all have them.
My family said goodbye to a very dear friend in 2011 and in 2012 we look forward to welcoming our first grandchild. A bit of yin and a bit of yang.

I hope 2012 brings happiness and health to all of you.
Happy New Year.x


  1. That was a lovely post. I think that blogging has brought new life, ideas and inspiration to quilters all over the world. And many thanks for that last photo!!

  2. This has been my first year blogging, and I too have learnt soooo many things and made many friends.
    Good luck in 2012 and, in the words of Brucie, Keep on blogging!

  3. Now I know what sporrans are for !!?!!
    You put me to shame in the blogging department - although I love reading what everyone' s up to, I can find so little to say !
    I shall look forward to another year of fun with everyone though - Happy New Year.

  4. What a lovely post Sheila! I've enjoyed watching your blog blossom over the last six months or so and look forward to following your creative journey through 2012.
    Thanks for the cheeky pic :)
    Wishing you a very happy Hogmanay!

  5. And the mystery QAL, some of us really enjoyed that and even finally have a bit of mojo back are are currently quilting it!

    Happy Hogmanay...

  6. It has been a great pleasure to get to know you, I love the mystery QAL, and will be working on finishing it too! Now, that last picture made me laugh, I thought that was a myth! I wish you all the best for this coming year.

  7. what a lovely post Sheila. I have learned so much through blogging and also 'met' many wonderful people. Your mystery taught me how to paper piece and to discover that I also enjoy it (hope your saw my pic the other day)
    And I love your last picture!! Happy New Year to you x

  8. Yay for finding new things. I kind of view life as a constant learning experience, and with 'tinternet, there's such a wealth of knowledge both to learn and contribute to, an enormous virtual library where anyone can be an author :o)

    Love the last pic though, wonder how long the photographer stood there to get that ;o)

    Happy new year!

  9. Happy New Year to you Sheila - you have become a great friend this year, and I am looking forward to many more laughs and tops tips from you in 2012 xxx

  10. Lovely post S, and what a funny pic to end with! I always love your sense of humour. You were a great encouragement to me personally when I first started blogging - thanks so much for that. Wishing you and yours a wonderful 2012! Jxo

  11. Thanks for that last pic; I've always wondered...

  12. Happy New Year. I love that tissue box cover with the appropriate text on it!

    And er I promise I didn't tilt my head to get a better view of the last picture. Absolutely not. ;-)

  13. Happy New Year Sheila! I've loved reading your blog this year and look forward to seeing why you share with us in 2012!

  14. What a year you have had, managing to come up with so many different energies, that's what keeps us going, taking the rough with the not so smooth and levelling it all out to make some sense of it all. Good job those guys in the pic were not out piping yesterday!!
    Happy New Year

  15. What a great post and one I shall's been great getting to know you this year. Oh, and thanks for that final photo!!

  16. There I was thinking you were straight laced!? Hehe! What a cheeky photo!

    It is so good to keep on learning and thanks for teaching me too!



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