Sunday, 6 February 2011


My final post for this evening.

As I said previously, January also involved some patchwork. Aunty Barbara, Linda and I continue to do the Mystery Quilt Block of the Month from the Fat Quarters. So far we have just completed our fourth block.

Here you can see all my four blocks laid out together. The top left dresden plate design was completed over Christmas: I pieced it by hand and then appliques it by hand. I'm not very good at needle turn applique, so I attached it with some blanket stitch and I'm really pleased with the result. Bottom left is the latest contribution, also pieced by hand. The two on the right were both pieced by machine.

Whilst we at the shop to get our fourth pattern, we signed up for a couple of workshops. The first is a series of at least 6 workshops (one a month) based on the Essential Sampler Quilt book by Nikki Tinkler. It's 25 blocks, each different, and we learn a different technique each month, spend the day making up the first block and as much as possible of a second, then take the next two home for homework. The first class was mid January and I have so far completed four blocks:

The first block was Lady in the Lake. Unfortunately a small measuring error means that this block has turned out slightly smaller than it should. The fabrics for all the blocks have so far come from my stash. On this block the pink fabric was an offcut I got from the shop in Barton, and the green fabric was a free fat quarter from Just Quilting. My triangles are also not quite right. I may...... redo this block as there are quite a few errors.....

This second block is called the Bear's Paw. The pink fabric is the same as in the first block. The dark blue fabric came from the same place and the two green fabrics, one with a large print pattern and one with a coordinating small-print pattern, came from Harrogate. I used a small amount of the Fabric for Aunty Barbara's phone case.

The third block is called Trip Around the World. It's made up of 121 1.5inch blocks. The pink frabic in the centre ties it to the two previous blocks. I have then used a dark fabric with a small purple flower print and a mauve farbic with flecks of yellow and pink in it and then a yellow frabic with small white spots. All these fabrics came from Just Quilting, but i hadn't bought them with any particular purpose! I really enjoyed doing this block - with that many seams it is soooo easy to make a small error, but I was very pleased that only in a couple of places do my seams not match perfectly, and even then the error in minor.

The final block this month was Goose in a Pond. This one was a bit fiddly, with the corner squares only being 1.25inch square. I also had a slight measuring error here - a couple of the pieces were off by half an inch, but by squeezing the seam allowance the block didn't suffer.

The pink fabric came from Harrogate (I used it already on the needlecase for Aunty Catherine), the dark blue came from the shop in Barton, the mauve fabric came from Just Quilting and I put a small square of the green fabric used on the first block in the centre of each corner - but it's a bit of a small piece to see the contrast well.

We also signed up for a scrappy log cabin workshop at the start of March.

I have also been planning my next two projects and collecting fabric for them: a blue and brown themed quilt following a pattern I got in a magazine last summer and that I tested already on the cushions I made for Jane for Christmas (though with a slightly different colour scheme). The second quilt is coincidentally by the same designer and uses a similar technique, but I am planning to do it in greens on a brown background. Some birthday money may be put towards the sashing and background fabrics......

That's it for January....onto February.

January stitching

A new year means some new projects.

The first of these projects started in December and will continue all year. Back in September, Debbie, from Letters Tied with Blue, asked me to stitch some models for her, which I have done. It is a set of 12 Calendar Girlies, one for each month. I decided to stitch the set as Christmas presents. Initally I planned to do a set for Granny and a set for Sheila, then we had the idea that Aunty Mary and Aunty Margaret would like it too. Then Aunty Barbara said how much she would like them, and Linda made some less than subtle comments. In the end I stitched 6 January Calendar Girlies which I gave as Christmas presents with the promise that Miss January would be followed by 11 sisters throughout the year.

This is Miss January (one of my favourites). The fabric came from the Fat Quarters - I thought it looked wintry without being Christmassy.

Throughout January I was stitching 6 Miss Februaries. This fabric also came from the Fat Quarters - I think they look better when the fabric background colour is not cream - I shall bear that in mind for the next ten Girlies.

All stitcheries were very well recieved.

In the last post you will have seen that I stitched a needlecase for Aunty Catherine for Christmas. I loved the design so much that I decided to do one for myself as well. I bought some batik fabrics from Threads and Patches in Bletchley when we went to stay with Mum and Dad at new year. The colours are abolsutely gorgeous, all blues and greens. Instead of doing a pincushion inside I bought some felt and put in two sheets for needles. I embroidered the words "tapestry", "embroidery", "general", "quiting" and "beading" as well as the numbers "24", "26" and "28" to organize the needles.
I also had a play with some more unusual embroidery stitches from the Nikki Tinkler book that Granny gave me.

My main Christmas present from Mum and from Linda was the pattern and fabric for a new quilt - Tail Feathers. I won't get the fabric until Easter, so in the meantime I am contenting myself with doing some of the smaller stitchery designs as birthday cards: The first ine if for Aunty Mary

The two smaller ones are for Anne and Denise

Of course, the top priority for January was to finish off Charlotte from John Clayton's Elegance range for Granny. And that is what I did. I was so pleased with the result. At Christmas I was given the second Elegance lady to stitch - Amelia. But she may have to wait.
A number of other projects are ongoing. I have made some good progress with the yellow tablecloth for Mum - all of the pieces have been cut and I have made a good start on attaching the slivers to the squares to make up the individual blocks.
I have made a start on the Holy Family kit that I bought to stitch for Uncle Terry. Instead of stitching it on 14hpi fabric, I'm stitching it on 18hpi aida. The fabric is also black. I'm finding it a lot easier to stitch than I had I had thought. I haven't done masses of it yet, but it is coming together very quickly.
That was it for January....except for some patchwork.....

Bit of a catch up rquired

So it's been a while since we had an update. Christmas is long gone, so I can now post some pictures of the presents I made:

The bag pictured here was a paatern from Moda Bakeshop. Originally designed to be made from a charm pack, I bought 5 fat quarters in Moda fabrics from the The Fat Quarters and cut them to the size of a charm pack. The design is made to be reversible, so on the inside it is lime greens adnd on the outside it's the purples. The straps are the same - purple on one side and green on the other.

I love the design, but if I did it again Iwould do the topstitch in a colour that matched the inside colour, as it's not easy to keep the lines matching on the back where you can't see it on the machine. This was a Christmas present for Michelle.
This needlecase was made for Aunty Catherine as a Christmas present. The design came from the Art for Heart Sew necessary book by Nancy Halvorssen, which Ive already made the pincushion and thread catcher from. The fabrics came from my stash (an I cought a couple!). The green and pink were bought at Harrogate, the blue and light green from the Needles and Pins Show at the Metro Arena last spring, the yellow was left over from my cupcake quilt and the beige and dark greeny-grey from the Fat quarters. The pink petals and free to move and the layers are stitched together with blanket stitch.

On the inside there are three pockets and the yellow leaf is a pincushion.

I have since made myself one as well - I shall share some photos later.

Mum's Christmas present consisted of two framed Michael Powell Greek Island pictures. This is the second one that I stitched from aan issue of the World of Cross Stitching that first came out a couple of years ago. It's partner picture came from Cross Stitcher from this year

I tweaked some of the colours, especially the greens, so that the two pictures were more alike, then framed them in square cream frames from Hobby Craft.