Monday 11 March 2013

A Weekend of Friends & Family

It was a busy weekend - on Saturday my friend Janet & I set off for a day at Creative Stitches, at the SECC, Glasgow.
It's several years since we went to this particular show and we both noticed a few changes. I would say it's still not the show to go to if you are looking for fabric. Last time we recalled loads of embroidery & cross stitch stands, this time it was heaps of wool & knitting that stood out for us.
I mentioned that my intention was to scope the sewing machine stands but with only two makes on offer, I was disappointed.But it didn't spoil our day and surprisingly , I came home with wool, and a dressmaking pattern for a wee girl's dress - well you have to buy something don't you?
The real highlight of the day was getting to meet Jo, who was on her own stand - Avery Homestores. As you will know by now, Jo is organising a one day Stitch Gathering in August on Sunday 25th August, in Edinburgh. What I can now tell you is that I am going to be teaching one of the classes. I am totally chuffed and excited to be doing this in my home City!! Can't tell you what I am teaching yet, it's a bit of a secret........but the other teachers are no secret..

On Sunday, as well as it being Mother's Day, it was our little Grand daughter's first birthday party, her actual birthday is today. She was a bit overwhelmed to start with but was soon running about and enjoying the attention.

Not long after Ava was born I read somewhere (think Carol at Mamacjt) of an idea to make a memory book and decided there and then to do something along those lines. A few years ago, in class, I ran a Journal Quilt project. Journal quilting was quite popular for a while and is basically about making small, usually about A4 sized quilts, maybe taking the time to try out new techniques, or maybe trying to reflect a time or event or emotion, important to you. The results in class were so interesting. So I set about making a selection of journal quilts for Ava, I intended putting them together into a book. I had great plans to comple one of these wee quilts each month, but in reality I managed two or three, managed to make notes and probably completed the rest since New Year!! As my deadline got nearer, I took advantage of my embroidery machine. This was a secret project that I kept from my daughter, so much shuffling and door closing was done when I saw her car arrive at the door!
The pages within are meaningful to me and my family and might bore you, so feel free to click away now or maybe go get a cuppa..............
This is the inside front cover, an orphan DP9 block.

This is February 2012, the month before Ava arrived. I tried a bit of stamping which is hard to read here - I was setting the scene for 2012 being the Queen's Jubilee year etc, and  it was a Leap Year.

And backed with some leftovers from one of her quilts.

Unlike March 2013, March 2012 was warm & sunny and I managed a wee bit of FMQ.

And more leftover Peeps on the back.

In April Ava attended her first quilt show, my Open Day - so I made a patchwork background and hung some tiny quilts from some cord.

Plain back but it shows up my tiny Sheila's Star.

In May, Ava found her thumb and found it totally fascinating. I found the baby clipart on Google and converted it to applique. The daft thing is, it kinda looks like her!!

You guessed - more leftovers on the back.

In June, Grandma & Grandad flew off to Australia for a month!!

See, I knew this fabric would come in handy.

July 5th has become a common anniversary date in our family.

I had quite a bit left over.

We all remember August - the numbers, stitched in metallic gold, silver & bronze are of course, the UK medal tally.
Nothing wrong with a bit of patriotism.

We all love this pic of Ava with her Great Grandad, I tried to make it look like a polaroid. The Septemebr dates are all family birthdays for her to put in her diary - lol.

Same fabric on back, a bit of shot cotton.

Needs no explanation

More solid on back, anyone still with me?

Now this is a funny one - the central band with the buttons on came from my Per Una cardi - Ava just loves buttons and has especially loved these ones.

What better than an actual chunk of the cardi, for the back of this page!(Don't worry, it was way past its best)

First Christmas

This time, the leftovers are from Ava's Christmas stocking.

No prizes for guessing this one.

Some tooth fairies for the back.

More milestones - and those wee roller skates were saved by me, from one of Ava's mummy's cardis, knitted by my mum.

Made this with tumblers cut using Gordon the Go!!

This is the back of the book, another orphan DP9 and is also the back of the last page, March 2013.

I loved this project, it ended up a little unpredictable and might have benefitted from more detailed planning. I didn't add the months to the individual designs as I went along so am indebted to Christelle for generously providing me with her cool calendar fabrics. Each month's quilt was made by "bagging" (no binding) and the left edges left raw. I then made "sleeves" without any wadding in, with a view to joining into a book.
There were 15 pages so I stitched the together in threes, trapping ribbons in as I stitched. Then I sewed the groups together using buttons, and lastly I tied the ribbons together, one group to another. I do have a book on fabric journals but hadn't constructed my pages in a way that could make use of proper binding techniques.

Happy Birthday Little'un - I look forward to explaining all these pages to you one day.x


  1. That book is amazing, and I cannot believe Ava is one already!

  2. Oh that is the perfect record of Ava's first year - wonderful job there Mrs xxx

  3. That memory book is fantastic! Ava is a very lucky girl to have such a thoughtful and creative Grandma :)

  4. That is an amazing book. Ava will love it in the years to come. You are a very clever Grandma. Di x

  5. Oh Sheila!
    Words fail me... this is SO divine. Every page brings a smile.
    And Ava's cake is such fun! What a weekend you have had. Time for YOU to have a cup of tea!

  6. What a truly amazing gift: something Ava can keep forever. Brilliant Sheila

  7. Wow Sheila - this is an amazing treasure for a very lucky little girl's 1st birthday!

  8. What an amazing gift! It's gorgeous, well done you and lucky Ava for having such a loving Grandma :)

  9. Ava's memory book is wonderful, what a great keepsake!

  10. It was great to meet you too Sheila! Wow that book is incredible - what a wonderful Granny you are!!

  11. aaargh!! That was actually me above Sheila, computer logged on to my son's account!

  12. What a great idea for a present - she'll treasure that forever! I also love her cake - so sweet!

  13. Your book is Brilliant! I have wanted to make a fabric book for so long - in fact I was thinking about it just yesterday. Yours looks so neat and lovely.

    Ps. love the look of that cake too!

  14. Aww, cute idea! I was a tad worried that the ellie on the cake had a sparkler up its arse when I saw the thumbnail, was rather glad it didn't really ;o)

  15. The journal is incredible Sheila!! Ava really will treasure it all her life :) Love the line up for the retreat - some of my favourite bloggy friends!

  16. What a beautiful memory book for Ava! I'm sure she will treasure it for years to come! Jxo

  17. THat is amazing Sheila, and I loved looking at every one . It's a brilliant idea and something Ava (and her mum) will be able to treasure.

  18. That is just so fun and lovely, what a great idea. And happy birthday to Ava!



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