Monday 29 February 2016

A Little Help Can Go A Long Way.

EDIT - sp, you are coming up as a no reply blogger and I am unable to respond. Please email me directly to receive my address.

Moving on from my last post, many of you know that my class year always ends with an Open Day.

This year it will be held on the 3rd of April in Alloway Village Hall, Ayr - just opposite Robert Burn's cottage.

This year, being my final year, the exhibition part will be reflective of classes done over the last 12 years.

Each year, we have a Bring and Buy stall - "stuff", related to sewing or knitting etc is donated and we sell it on. We also have teas & coffees with yummy home baking. All in all, we manage to raise quite a bit of money for a chosen charity. Let me tell you about this year's choice.

About Beth
Beth is a cheeky 3 year old from Ayr. She was born with the rare genetic condition Neurofibromatosis. In November 2015 she was diagnosed with a brain tumour. As a result she has endured multiple surgeries and is currently undergoing a year of chemotherapy at Glasgow's Royal Hospital for Children (the New Yorkhill). 
We could use all the usual cliches to describe her as brave or a wee fighter but they don't begin to do justice to how well she has coped with and adapted to such a massive change in her life. The tumour and surgery have left her with a significant left sided weakness which has had a huge impact on her day to day life. 
Beth is a little friend of my Grandaughter Ava so her story is a personal one for my family.

All funds raised will actually go to Yorkhill Children's hosptital in Glasgow.

As I prepare for our Open Day I thought maybe a Lucky Dip would be a fun addition and as I wrapped a few small items today, it occurred to me that fat 1/4s would be a useful and welcome dip item and then I thought maybe some of my blog readers might feel inclined to donate a fat 1/4 to the cause?
Should this be you, then please email me -  sheiladonnachieatbtinternetdotcom  and I shall let you have my postal address.
I thank you in advance should you wish to do this.

Meanwhile here is a link to Beth's fundraising page where you can read more about the campaign.

Many many thanks for reading this.

Sunday 28 February 2016

Rite of passage

Today, I held my final workshop in Alloway Village four weeks time my regular classes will come to a close, not just for the season, but under the Bluepatch umbrella, for the last time.
Yes, I am hanging up my rotary cutter, well in a teaching capacity that is..........

I have been teaching now for 12 years, I started with 4 ladies around my dining table and currently have 4 classes of 12 ladies in a local community centre.

Those of you who have followed this blog will have seen much of the work completed by my super students.
We have made many a quilt, lots of smaller items like the Mega Pinnie, overnight bags, so many things, too numerous to mention. We have held an Open Day at the end of each session and raised hundreds of pounds for different charities, and we have made blocks and this year, quilts, again, for different charities.

I always wanted to teach but for one reason or another it was never meant to be, back when I was young.
Looking back over the last 12 years and having read the many lovely recent emails from some of my students, I have come to realise that I have indeed fulfilled that long held ambition.

It has been an absolute privilege to pass on my love of patchwork and quilting and infect so many others with my obsession.
I have watched friendships grow in class and I count myself lucky to have made so many friends myselfalong the way.

It was terribly hard making the decision to retire, but I hope I sweetened the pill by announcing to my classes that one of my very talented students is going to take on the role and begin classes of her own.

Amanda has been with me for a relatively short time but her abilities were easy to spot. Many of you will know her on Instagram as weeshuttermonkey.

For her new teaching venture she has rebranded the classes and will become Cake and Crafting with Shuttermonkey.

I wish her well and know she will get oodles of support from all my lovely ladies.

I plan to keep on blogging, keep on quilting, keep on selling my Aurifil and keep on keeping in touch with as many of you all as I can.

In the meantime here are a few pics from today's workshop.

Friday 26 February 2016

Hoping to have a Splendid Time

A quick post update for the weekend.

The green and purple Siblings Together quilt is almost complete, just the binding to stitch down and I have a bluepatch fairy who has offered to do that.

I'm not sure what it is about quilters and how easy it is for us to be seduced by the lure of a NEW project. On Instagram I eventually (I'm a bit slow) became aware of others posting blocks from The Splendid Sampler so I nipped over to the website to have a look. It's a sew a long Sampler dreamed up by Pat Sloan and Jane Davidosn and together with many guest designers they are posting 2 blocks a week for 50 weeks. What's not to like.
The blocks will cover many different techniques, the individual designers offer advice and tutorials on their blogs and the blocks will finish at 6".
So, of course, I jumped in................and have made the first block - there have only been 4 so far, so still time to join in.

Have a great weekend.

Monday 15 February 2016

More of the same......

but a little different in that I have progressed with most of my projects.

I think my Mega Pinnie looked fab in this month's Today's Quilter, I was thrilled to see it all laid out so professionally.

I have been following the BOM in the same magazine, it's designed by Jen Kingwell and I'm thoroughly enjoying using up only scraps to make the blocks - this month there were eight blocks to make and I think a full quilt of these would be super especially if a bit more attention was given to colour value and placement.


and altogether, in no particular order, this month's blocks.

Because I have made these so scrappy, I am going to finally make a link to NickyLeanne's Scraptastic Tuesday, I think I am just going to make the deadline for this month.

Scraptastic Tuesday

Progress is also being made on the Siblings Together quilts (click the link for a bluepatch update) - all blocks made by ladies in my classes, I am joining the blocks. The pink and white one is done, the teal and yellow just needs the binding stitched down. These photos were taken before I got to the final stages.

and this is the back

and today was the turn of the blue and white - once again I popped a little applique on to take the eye away from the less than perfect intersections. I have a lovely navy and white striped binding prepped for this one.

I have also managed a little personal sewing too - my Bee buddies in Bee a Brit Stingy are embarking upon a new project for 2016 - we have each to start off by making a very large hexagon, with 16" sides. Mine is going to have a large Georgetown Circle in the middle of my hexie and I have managed to complete half of the circle so far - I was a bit nervous joining the arcs but took it slowly and am well chuffed. I decided to stay stitch the outer and inner edges before joining and I think it helped.

Lastly, many of you know I retail Aurifil, in quite a small way, mainly for my classes. I thought I might reach out to others who might be interested in buying this super thread. So I have have started listing small bundles on Instagram - see button on my sidebar to have a look if you are interested. My current bundles, available to UK buyers only are -
Have a great week.x

Monday 1 February 2016

Getting Back on the Horse

Well! That was a bit of a lull wasn't it?
I didn't set out to forget January, it has just slipped by so quickly.

The problem with posting less and less is that I can see how easy it would be to forget all about the blog, and having been gently nudged by a couple of my students recently, I am going to try and keep it going.

So, I missed doing a 2015 roundup, I didn't mention any Christmas presents, given or received, no New Year resolutions to publish and then break,, in short, I am leap frogging right into February - no pun intended in this, a Leap Year.

January was busy, and eventful - friends and family had accidents, all ok, but nasty occurrences at the time.
One friend lost the tip of her forefinger to a rotary cutter, so.......BE CAREFUL OUT THERE!!

My classes all started back and quilted blocks for Siblings Together have come in, thick and fast.
You may recall from this post, that I launched a challenge that should result in us making 4, 60" square quilts, for Siblings together.
The first one is almost complete, with just a wee bit of binding to finish.

The blocks which finish at 20" came to me quilted - I joined them together using strips but my intersections weren't too accurate so I decided to applique the white hearts on - think I got away with it............

I see from my last post that I featured Madeline's quilt, from one of last term's classes - this was a quick two hour play about with jelly roll strips. Madeline made her little quilt bigger and started decided to applique little birds all around the borders. It's all done now and she free machine quilted all the birds, to secure them. It is a delightful quilt.

Last year, I subscribed to Today's Quilter and began the Block of the Month project, designed by Jen Kingwell, whose My Small World I so enjoyed making last year (still to be quilted). I am keeping up so far, and these were January's blocks - they might vary a little here and there because I am using scraps and orphans again........... I seem to have developed a real love for scrappy.

Bee a Brit Stingy 2015 has wrapped up and I recently received my rows from all my Bee pals.
Here they are, quickly laid out - I have some thinking to do about final layout and maybe adding in some further skinny rows.Meanwhile we are busy planning our 2016 project which should prove to be our most challenging yet.

And finally, I received my subscription copy of Today's Quilter on Saturday - I could hardly contain myself as I have my very first project published in it - my  Mega Pinnie!! I am so thrilled with the way my words and diagrams have been so professionally translated into the magazine - it even made the front cover. 

It's out on 4th - just saying.


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