Friday 1 November 2019


I have discovered, as far as sewing projects go, that I like a deadline. I say, for sewing projects, as it clearly doesn't apply to my blogging.

I was sorry to miss a post last month, I knew the end of the month was creeping up on me and I was full of good intentions..................

Another lesson I have learned of late, I don't seem to multi task so easily as I get older - has this happened to you too?
i just seem to get a bit exciteable and flustered if I have too many balls in the air - Old Lady Syndrome out to get me!!

Anyway, back to sewing. I know one or two of you were interested in my Patchwork Puppy, started months ago and tinkered with right up to this week when I was able to call it a finish! I have made it for my Grand daughter Macie who will be one on Monday, such a quick year.

I've been quite busy on some Christmas gifts too recently but none absolutely finished, hopefully I'll be ready to share next month.

I borrowed a Krista Moser ruler from a generous friend and played about with diamonds, think this ruler can go on the Christmas wishlist. This is a wee table topper I made from scraps -

And I seemed to get into quite the Halloween frame of mind - a quickly made (and finished) table runner.

And these little tykes are really what keeps me quite busy!

                             Linking up with MA's October Furtle around the Blogosphere

Archie The Wonder Dog

Sunday 1 September 2019

August Round Up

So I just spent an age writing a fabulous (honest) blog post about my August pursuits.
Blogger would not preview but did appear to save...........until I closed and re- opened and it was gone!

I am sorry but just don't have the energy to re- create so will show a few pics and remind you that I am linking up with Mini Archie's Furtle around the blogosphere.

Some home made dishcloths.

A Lola pouch

Another Mandolin block

Archie The Wonder Dog

Friday 2 August 2019

Furtling After a Fashion, in July

I couldn't agree more with Helen when she said she thought blogging once a month would be reasonalbly straightforward.

Thoxe month ends just sneak up even though I do think about my blog through the month.

July started off for us with great excitement - I had entered the Wimbledon ballot last year and was  astounded to be offered tickets when the ballot results came out in February.

Even more gobsmacking was that we had Centre Court tickets! Granted they were for the first day and from looking at the seat and row numbers we did surspect we might need binoculars. But no - we could see beautifully, we were sheltered by the closed roof structure from too much sun and our day was absolutely fab from start to finish. Even the decoration of the tube station added to our enjoyment.

Above was 1st match on Centre court, Djokovic v Kohlshreiber.

Safe to say we had a lovely few days in London, hadn't been in years. We walked our socks off seeing the sights and I managed a lovely visit to the V&A where I made sure to see the Mary Quant exhibition.

I also managed a quick foray into Liberty.

We travelled by train so I was able to enjoy some gentle EPP, continuing slowly with my Mandolin Quilt.

I have been trying to cut back on my EPP sewing due to my pesky trigger thumb - I did have a steroid injection about 10 days ago and thankfully there is no longer any pain, just residual stiffness and clicking. But I can happily sew with a straight thumb and reckon "use it or lose it"

I also made this little quit which is essentially just a 12" block. It's to be a little birthday gift to match the baby quilt from a year ago that I made for some young friends in the US. They are outdoorsy folks and live in Utah. This block is called  after Zion National Park - found the image on Pinterest.

I may have made a slight error in my fabric positioning (oops) but overall am happy with the block.

Finally I started another gift, for one of my grand babies - there is a real doggy in her family so I thought a Patchwork Pup might go down well. So far have just cut and joined the squares.

I might also have started a Lola pouch, just to scratch a sewing itch last week..........

I am linking up to Mini Archie's Furtle Around the Blogosphere.

Archie The Wonder Dog

Friday 28 June 2019

Joys of Retirement

Just nipping in to say hello and apologise for missing last month 's round up and Linky.

In surprisingly spontaneous fashion we booked a late deal holiday so found ourselves enjoying the sunshine at month end.

I did manage a little bit of EPP by the pool but had underestimated supplies and only achieved this -

I am also trying to lay off hand sewing a bit as my silly thumb is still troubling me - apparently it is trigger finger and I have secured a hospital appointment that I hope will lead to a pain relieving injection, I shall cross my other fingers in the meantime.

My main accomplishment to share is the completion of the Overnight Bag for my DH. Back in 2014 I ran a six week class making these bags and I think approximately 50 were completed. What a great feat it was for my lovely ladies!

So I used  my own bag when away for a weekend in February and DH asked if he could have one - "of course, I said" inwardly groaning............but I did it and made one or two changes.

Last year I used Annie's Soft and Stable for the first time and was keen to try it out for this bigger project - well, I am just delighted at how robust the bag looks. I also added integral zips to the side pockets instead of magnetic catches, and I lined the bag with a heavy ripstop nylon giving it a waterproof element. This made the finishing stitching alongside the big zip a bit of a chore but think it was more to do with aforementioned thumb than the fabric!

The main body of the bag was made using a heavy calico from stash and also in my stash was the great New York print fabric, a sort of linen, that I had bought at Stitch Gathering a couple of years ago. It was a perfect way to use it up and I had just enough.

So there it is, ready to make its debut this weekend as we set off for Wimbledon. (waving excitedly)

Hopefully I'll still be in time next week to link up to Mini Archie's Furtle Around the Blogosphere.

Meanwhile I've managed to find photos from way back then, the first is my prototype, followed by some absolutely stunning bags.

Wednesday 1 May 2019

31st April

My way of sneaking in an April blog post, where did that month go?

After the excitement of March, April has been busy but I have managed some sewing. I seem to have had a chance to make great progress with my Irish Chain quilt which I started many months ago, using up scraps but in a controlled way and using a lot of low volume fabrics. I was inspired by reading Rita's blog post, Red Pepper Quilts and although not a direct copy of hers, I have followed her excellent pressing plan and have achieved rather nice seams on the reverse of my project with every patch and row interlocking beautifully. I have only two blocks left to make and have thoroughly enjoyed the process, the constant repetition allows the mind to wander in an enjoyable way!

Some of the joined blocks.

Being so far on with one long term project has allowed me to start another - ha ha. A whole year ago when we were on holiday in Australia, I collected some templates that my sister had kindly sent for on my behalf from Tales of Cloth. One set was for the well known Mandolin Quilt and I spent quite a while sorting through my stash which is not all that huge and have laid aside my selection. I really do intend this as a long term project and will try to pace myself, especially as the first two blocks have left me with quite painful thumbs. Strangely it doesn''t actually hurt to sew but aches terribly the next day. I have just bought some Sue Daley Size 15 milliners' needles that come recommended for those with carpal tunnel or arthritis so I'll see if they help. I do tend to grip my work quite tightly so will try to relax that a bit. Anyone else have this problem?

It was my birthday in April and a friend gifted me a hand spun skein of yarn - she thought it might be suitable for making into a basket so once that was suggested I was on it! And produced this sweet little basket.

And that was my April.

Linking to Archie and his Furtling adventures.

Archie The Wonder Dog

Sunday 31 March 2019

A Little Madness in March

March was always going to be a busy month.

Our third grandchild was expected on 13th of the month but arrived two days early in rather a hurry making a very special birthday present for his big sister Ava.

Ava and baby Murray sharing a birthday forever.

A few days later our other grand daughter Macie jetted off on her first foreign holiday and loved the warm sunshine.

Macie, now 5 months

Back in my sewing room I was able to get busy. The quilt I had prepared for Baby Murray was fashioned out of his daddy's shirts, I mentioned this a couple of posts ago. I had bought rather a nice cotton gingham fabric for the back which felt almost like a soft flannel. Before assembly, if I can, I like to machine embroider a personalised label using the backing and wadding and then fully layer up, creating an integral label. However, as soon as I started to embroider the machine began to chew up the backing fabric - ugh!!
Back to the drawing board, I decided the gingham fabric was quite a loose weave nd ditched it (although I did go on to use it for binding)
I then decided to stick with shirts and made up a backing using 9 large pieces. Although I loved the soft feel of the back and front I was very nervous about quilting this little project - I just knew it was going to ripple and pleat and do all those other nasty things you just don't want. I knew I wouldn't sit and hand quilt so I opted to machine tie it. Every intersecting point was stitched with a small fancy satin stitch pattern and then each plain white patch was treated to two similat "ties".
I do feel a bit disappointed but remind myself that I have made this quilt totally from used fabric (apart from the wadding of course) and think in a funny way that the quilting sort of suits its style.

Moving on, I made a bit of an effort and achieved my second quilt finish of the month. This next quilt started over a year ago as an alternative colour sample of an old class project and is something I am hoping to offer soon as a pattern. 
When I bought the Lewis and Irene "Island Girl" range it made me think of Disney's Moana so it was always destined for Ava, I just hope she still like Moana by the time she gets it

I also continued with my Luna Lapin wardrobe.............I am now happy to say that as well as her coat and shoes, Luna not only has a new polka dot dress but finally her modesty is preserved with the addition of some French knickers.

My final March make was somthing I have fancied doing for a while - converting a small tin (typically an Altoids one) into a mini playset. It was so much fun as I footered (or furtled) with little bits of paper, felt, glue etc........

And finally before linking up with Mini Archie, please indulge me as proud Grandma as I share my attempts to get all three into one photo. Herding cats came to mind.

Archie The Wonder Dog

Thursday 28 February 2019

February Furtling

Wasn't February quick, as always?
Here in the UK. the last week has been unseasonably warm with temperatures in the upper teens, about double the seasonal average.
Locally we have had the dilemma of whether or not to "cast a clout before May be oot". Always a tricky decision to switch to a less warm coat or jacket too soon but this week we have been quite safe to do so.
This image is from a local small park area, always a glorious Spring sight, maybe a little early this year.

Earlier in the month, before the warmer weather, my OH and I enjoyed a mini break to York. We had never been before and thoroughly enjoyed tramping along the City Walls and maze of streets. For a chilly February weekend it was extremely busy, not sure I'd relish a weekend there in July! We visited the Castle Museum and the famous Railway Museum, both excellent and really just enjoyed a relaxing time away. Of course I had to visit Duttons for Buttons.......

I took my Overnight Bag that was a class project from a few years ago and had forgotten how spacious it was.

Plenty of room for three days away. My OH has requested one and it gives me the opportunity to tweak my pattern and perhaps include different features and fabrics. 

The rest of the month saw a bit of sewing action. I had made a start on this applique project at our Ayrshire MQG meeting at the beginning of the month and since then have made a little more progress.

Last term in Amanda's class we were making a Sew Together bag and as I had made the very similar Bionic Gear bag (front in pic) I decided to make one of each to compare. The SG bag is smaller and seemed to have fewer but comprehensive instructions (in pic it's behind the BG bag, to the left)
This term we have been making a Boxy Pouch and I followed the pattern by Pink Stitches, it's at the back of the pic. Which just leaves Lola, on the right - this pattern is by Svetlana at Sotak Handmade and really is a peach of a pattern. I think the bound zip is genius and the finished effect so professional, do try it if you haven't already made one.
Most of the fabrics used in these pouches were Lewis and Irene.

Two yers ago at Creative Stitches in Glasgow, I used some birthday pennies to buy a Luna kit (by Cool Crafting) - I made the actual Luna + dress pretty soon after but has taken me until last weekend to make her beautiful winter coat. Another great product, I was full of awe for the attention to detail in this pattern, just note the faux pockets and sleeve tabs. I must admit that I did not make the six tiny buttonholes required for the six tiny buttons, I was too scared to spoil the coat, so instead have secured it with two discreetly placed press studs.

The sudden inspiration to do the coat was inspired by finding these  books........
I have my eye on some French knickers.

And once again I will be linking to Mini Archie's February Furtle Around the Blogosphere

Archie The Wonder Dog


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