Thursday, 31 December 2009

Happy New Year!

As 2009 draws to a rapid close and we welcome in 2010, it's time for a quick reflect on the past year. It's been an interesting year of new activities like blogging, new friends, in the real world, in the blog world and on facebook, renewing old friendships and catching up with old friends too! A productive year from my allotment, despite surgery halting my activities for a while. And a productive year on the quilting front. I completed 23 quilting projects this year, done bound and completely finished, I gave away 10 of these quilts. A year of accomplishments.

The coming year which fast approaches brings new challenges, new adventures, and new accomplishments too.

I am sooooo pleased to able to tell you I have been invited to join two very talented ladies over at Expedition Quilt Art, and know that these wonderful ladies are taking me on a journey of discovery. Who knows where it will lead, but I'll be taking you all along with me. Speaking of which, are you up for a challenge? yeah, OK, pop over to Expedition Quilt Art blog where the January challenge is posted. Have you tried dying your own fabrics? How about dying a quilt after it's been made?

To all of you out there, I wish you all Health, Happiness and Creativity for a very Happy New Year in 2010.

Tuesday, 29 December 2009

This and that ...

Christmas came and went. My kids loved their presents and left too quickly to celebrate with their Dad. My mum LOVES her quilt, in fact she is still gushing over it each time we speak!

There was plenty of this...
And I got busy quilting this...

Before Christmas I saw this fabric from Moda, 'Close to my Heart', so close to mine I bought what was left in the shop! I've had a little play with some FQs from the Astor Manor range and am currently piecing the back.

I quilted this one today too...

And have loaded up another of my older tops onto the frame, and am working on that. I've been busy with my studying too, catching up on some of the activities including painting, and quilting.
Is it me or does the fast approaching New Year drive you to finish a few more things before this year is out?
Happy Quilting!

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Merry Christmas!

It's finished!
All the presents are wrapped, the teenagers are stoically stuck to the sofa denying bedtime and not wanting to be seen to take their stockings to bed, preparations for dinner are all sorted. Let the fun begin!

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy Quilty New Year.

Health and Happiness!

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Christmas came early!

I mentioned a couple of months ago that I had joined in the Fall Mini Quilt Swap. My own little quilt is still in the making and I must get if finished before the end of the month! But I was so surprised when I got this parcel in the mail!

Thank you Nikki, I am thrilled with the quilt as well as all the other goodies you sent.

The stitching detail around each leaf is stunning, and the quilting is really beautiful.
Nikki thank you so much for this beautiful quilt, I am truly thankful.

We had snow, it's an unusual occurrence and one that tends to bring the country to a stand still it's become such a rarity. I love a crisp bright morning, don't you?

Later that day... just for 20 minutes or so....

The visibility was so poor, it was hard to capture. It stopped as abruptly as it started. But it's always so peaceful when it snows.
We got the tree up :o) A strange mix of ornaments collected over many years from many countries. I really must get a new tree topper for next year!

My friend asked me to make a bag for her granddaughter. Girls of a certain age just love purple! (grin) I hope she likes it.

I had a great day yesterday with my friends from Expedition Quilt Art out in the Fens. I have been slacking (big style) on my City and Guilds studies. Dear Sweetiepie got us some very useful gifts, one of which is now set up next to my dining table, (yes, that will be the one that is also the sewing table, cutting table, homework table, and the sitting round and chatting table,... THE table). Thank you, there is definitely one way to motivate, and that is to visually focus, so I added a little visual organisation of my own :)

Now I can focus on what has to be done, trial ideas, set some deadlines, and with a little creative license and some spare wadding, a design wall! What a perfect present. Thank you both so much for your encouragement, support and inspiration :)
Christmas really has come early!
Happy Quilting!

Monday, 14 December 2009

Free Gift!

My friend Linda over at Hand Quilting Nana is paying it forward, in response to receiving her table runner from me. If you want to receive a hand made gift from Linda, and are prepared to then pay this forward on to 3 more people, please go over to her blog and sign up. Thanks :-)

Sunday, 13 December 2009

Oh what a week!

It's been a busy week that's for sure. To say I've been a little focused on finishing some Christmas projects is an understatement!

So, last weekend, along with a little focusing help from Pat Sloan and her Holiday Finish It Up weekend, I managed to get these little gift bags made. Thanks to a pattern from Moda Bakeshop.

And these three too! Some have already made it to their recipients, others have yet to be packaged up.
I managed to get my mums quilt pieced together, loaded it up on the frame Saturday morning, and began the quilting. I finished the quilting Thursday morning. This included going back and doing the triangles I missed in my haste to take it off the frame to turn and do the horizontal sashing strips.

I've got the binding on, and am sewing it down by hand at the moment.
I've got 3 table runners pieced. (but can only find pics of 2 of them) This one is the bonus one, made with the left overs of the strip sets from the Amy Butler pinwheels runner below. This was quilted with a variegated thread from Aurifil. It was beautiful to quilt with, and lovely soft subtle colours.

This is the Amy Butler runner, pattern courtesy of Quilt Dad, who designed it for Moda Bakeshop using a Honeybun. As I don't have any, I cut into my stash and went from there.

I made this one as a birthday/Christmas gift for a friend. I finished piecing the runner on Thursday morning, loaded the two runners in the afternoon and got them quilted. I put on the binding in the evening. Phew

It was hard to get a good pic of the quilting late into the evening, but this gives you an idea.

The gift was given Friday morning, and I am so pleased my friend absolutely loves it!
The postman has made several deliveries, one a huge box almost as big as me, can you guess what it might be?
Another are these gorgeous threads from Aurifil, all 50 wt mako cotton. I can't wait to compare them with the 40 wt, which I love.

Today, we were preparing and packing bags for my daughter to go on her school trip to Germany tomorrow. How do you know which is your suitcase when it's in with 50 other kids? Well, yours is the only one with a hand made luggage label of course!

She chose the fabrics, something bright that could not be missed.

I'm pretty pleased with the results, not bad for something I came up with from scratch!
So it's been a busy week, I also got a simple Holiday runner put together, quilted my foundation Santa's, and made a Christmas stocking.

Happy Quilting!

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Great Giveaway!

I just have to tell you about a great giveaway, Judi over at Green Fairy Quilts is having an awesome Christmas giveaway! Go head over there and see for yourself, tell her I sent you! You don't need to enter, then I have a better chance of winning :o) he he

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

All my PIF's have arrived ...

Today I heard from Linda, the final recipient to receive my one of my Pay It Forward Gifts :o)

So, just so you know what it was I sent, three little table runners, from left to right, you see Sue, Linda and Nikki.

I really enjoyed making these table runners, and they were the first things I quilted after my surgery. So I can finally add them to my roll call of finished quilts down the side of my blog for this year.

Is it me, or has this year just flown by quicker than a blink of an eye?

Sunday, 6 December 2009

False start

So yesterday I got the lone star quilt loaded onto my frame, I got the borders done, and started in the corner there. And then I stopped! I really didn't like what I'd done, so me and my trusty seam ripper embarked on a little reverse quilting!

Today, I finally got the final stitches out, and could start, again, on the lone star.

Empress Woo is sneaking in the pic there too!

As you know, I have a bit of an evasive approach to this quilt. Today I managed a good third of the way on the quilting. However, I got a little tired and decided that was it for the day. Needless to say, there is a little more reverse quilting to be done. I'm just not happy with tired quilting :(

Saturday, 5 December 2009


I've been procrastinating over this quilt all week, in fact longer than that, since the beginning of November, as that's when I bought the fabrics for my mum's Christmas quilt.

I got the top pieced on Friday night, along with piecing, pressing and squaring up the backing fabric ( a nice little number from the Empress Woo range by Robyn Randolph). This morning I loaded it onto the frame and started on the quilting. Wooohoooo!

Needless to say I've stopped for a little reverse quilting, normal service should recommence tomorrow :o)

Happy Quilting!

Friday, 4 December 2009

Bonnie Hunter Mystery

I was really pleased when I found out Bonnie was doing another Mystery quilt. She is the queen of scraps and tiny little pieces that all come together beautifully! At the beginning of this year I managed to keep up with Double Delight, and confess it is one that still needs to be quilted. So I have started on Carolina Christmas. Yes I know, not quite Christmas colours, but I'm not really a red and green person. So with those lovely blue and brown fabrics I got at Chilford, I found a few more to go with them for a more scrappy feel. Added a sumptuous rich white on cream, and for my constant I'm using a soft limey green from moda's Eva range.

So this is step one,

and this is my step two blocks.
The blue is looking a little pale in this, but you get the idea, right?
I am still cut, cut, cutting for slue three, and today Bonnie published clue four! OMG, this is what going to work does! And I have soooooooo much Christmas sewing to get done too!
Wish me luck!

Happy quilting!

Thursday, 3 December 2009

I won the Lotto!!!!!!

yes, that's right .... the Block Lotto! Back in October I posted that I'd Joined in this post. Well, I was surprised with a little beginners luck. Not normally my thing. And I have had great fun looking out for the post man with my little squishies. It's surprising how quickly they pile up. Now I only have one more block to arrive. This is a sneak peak at what my October Lotto blocks will look like altogether. And that's just some of them. I'm really looking forward to putting the together into a quilt.
So in November I dutifully made my blocks, and so enjoyed playing with the Christmas fabrics, particularly when using the red as a neutral. It really is so festive don't you think.

And you'll never guess, I won again!!!! Yep, my name came out the random generator again along with two other lucky winners Laura and Terri. I've shared my blocks with the other winners and they are winging their way across the pond as of this morning. So now, once again, I am on post man alert!

Happy quilting!