Monday, July 30, 2012

Grinding halt

Nice weekend with DD and A here just relaxing, A even cooked us all a couple of meals which was really nice to relinquish the kitchen duties and meant I could go and play.  DD received a Wii for her birthday in June and we had some fun skiing and bowling, there was also yoga to try, I can see great fun being had.

I had this sudden urge to try a quilt....... thought I would start smallish and do a lap quilt.  Started cutting and making little piles, but what I failed to do was work out the maths.....

So I carried on stitching and cutting, making pinwheels, now I realise just how many of these it will take, so its all come to a grinding halt until I can get some contrast material.  Shame I was just getting in the swing of it

Went on to make a couple of little mats using the wavy patchwork method, hard to see in the photo but quite effective 

The little cottage butter dish belonged to my Mum, she had a matching teapot too.

Oh well another week, better get going
take care

Friday, July 27, 2012


I was doing a little blog hopping, as you do, and found this little gem, it is very simple but extremely useful.  Its a car rubbish holder, we always seem to have bits n bobs in the car from car park tickets to munchie packs, so when I saw this at Kathleen's at Rose Prairie I thought it was just the ticket and made a small and large version.  It's a very simple bag. sized around a zip lock plastic bag with a handle to put over the gear stick or what ever, but as it can be sealed anything slightly whiffy can be sealed in.

 DH kindly harvested the lavender for me, not as much as I would have liked so when the rains come and we can actually dig in our  concrete  soil I would like to plant lots more for next year.  This is the before stripping

this is the yield, as I said not much really......

Its DD's fiance's birthday next week and I wanted to add a little something to his present and as he complains of a sore neck and back, I decided to make him 2 warm/cool packs filled with rice and 2 hand warmers, I also added a pair of shoe stuffers, stuffed with the lavender, well trainers can always do with a helping hand lol

Whilst I was at it I made another pair of hand warmers for the pressie box and several more shoe stuffers, but I ran out of lavender, so the only thing I can do is order some on line to finish off.

We have an uninvited visitor at the moment, a snake in the courtyard, of course the furries are agog with a potential play mate,  we think its harmless!! but don't want to upset it, just hope it will get the message and go away, and no there are no pics cos first I don't do snakes and second I'm quite sure lots of others don't do them either.

Oh well, off to do dinner, enjoy your weekend whatever you may be doing
take care

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Tuesdays Treasures

Thought I would join in today's Tuesdays treasures hosted over at  Melody's, this sweet little tea set was given to me by my great Aunt Doris.  My grandparents would take me to see her in Forest Hill London in the summer holidays when I stayed with them and I would play with this whilst they chatted.  It was always a big outing as it meant walking a mile or more to Carshalton station, getting a couple of trains then walking at the other end and of course in reverse, a very tiring day for a little girl.  When I was considered old enough to look after it, I was allowed to bring it home and it now lives in my china cabinet with a few other treasures.

The crochet doily was from my Mum's collection of vintage linens and I can remember as a child, a green glass dressing table set sitting on it in her room.  Mum used to enjoy visiting antique fairs and even jumble sales, just looking for bits n bobs and she collected all manner of artifacts, including a little vase for 25p, it wasn't to her taste so she put it in the auction room and received £25.00.  Apparently someone had the other one and wanted the pair no matter what, how lucky was that on both parts.

Off to find something to play with...
take care

Monday, July 23, 2012


I came across this little cross stitch kit lurking in the cupboard with a couple of others and decided it was just right to do, simple and easy without too much thinking.  Haven't thought what to make it into yet.  

I then decided to be a little more creative, this little cat is the same one I used on DD's needlecase (I'm sorry, but even though I have trawled through some blogs I still can't find who to acredit it to)  I drew around a heart shape and then let my pencil meander around creating the vine.  I used number 15 beads for the flowers and was quite pleased with the result.

What next? so I chose 1/2 squares in colours I don't usually choose and had a play.  I had been inspired by someone else's chevron cushion and gave it a go.  Trouble was, I totally miscalculated the number of squares I needed so decided to try the diamond shape as well.

I quite enjoyed doing these, just need to think a little bigger, lap quilt bigger perhaps?

What now?
take care

Monday, July 16, 2012


This year all of our Agarves have matured and are flowering, quite spectacular as they tower above everything else.  Unfortunately we have had high winds enough to lift roof tiles off and these magnificent flowers have taken a battering, completely breaking one off and damaging the others, such a shame as they take 30 odd years to flower then the whole plant dies.
Here you can see just how large one flowering head is as you can just see DH's hand holding it, its very heavy too.

I thought I would make a few mug rugs for DD using her favorite colour, purple

An interesting question was posed in someones blog (sorry can't remember who) which was, when does a WIP become a UFO?
Well this next project was definately in the UFO catagory.  It started out its life as a Baltimore pattern years ago, but I really didn't like the flatness at the time so I incorporated stumpwork, needleweaving, french knots and some beading to bring it more to life.  There it sat, it even came over to Spain, just shows how long ago it was started. So I decided to do something about it and put on the border, but this time I made the binding by bringing over the backing, quite a quick solution.

The petals and  bird's wings are wired

and the feathers were attached separately

Quite chuffed after all this time to see it finished and it looks good hanging up too.

Take care

Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Unicorn

I've been playing with Romeo! no I don't mean a gorgous Italian, I mean the vanishing  fabric.  I have played a little with this before but not with metallic threads.  Years ago I purchased a sampler pack of metallic threads which included needles, bobbin thread as well as the top thread, but I had never even got them out of the bag. My machine at that time wouldn't have handled the thread very well, but now I have my Bernina it played along quite happily.

I tried free hand first but couldn't keep the tension, it was much easier in the hoop and although it did take a little while to do, I think the finish is just right for the job. I only stitched it down in places to resemble flowing hair.

The little dragonfly is done on wires with organza using the stumpwork methods, a technique I really enjoy doing and it gives it a nice 3D effect.

It's really difficult to get a decent photo, but I'm sure you can get the drift.

I even quilted stars in the border and made my own binding with my little gadget, so all in all it was quite a good project to get going with.

Hmm what to play with now?!
Its really hot here, so I might even venture into the pool while I think.

Have a good weekend enjoying what ever you do,
take care 

Monday, July 9, 2012

A little applique

Back in January I had rather a serious fall, well actually I was completely knocked off my feet and bowled over. By whom you may well ask? it was one of our cats, yup Lucy came speeding around the corner from the kitchen straight into my legs as I was walking up the marble steps, I went flying landing very heavily across the steps and hitting my head on the marble wall. Now I'm not sure how much sense was in there in the first place but boy it certainly shook it all around.  A check up at the hospital, as my foot had smashed down very badly,  all was well in no broken bones, concussion, take some pills and off you go, the fact it has taken months to all heal is just another part of the equation.
Well a week ago I decided I had reached the end of putting up with the pain in my shoulder etc as it was having a serious impact on my life and as things have quietened down on the DD front I went to see an osteopath.  All went quite well on the first day but he wanted to see me again, so I have been going to his torture chamber   consulting rooms every morning with the instructions of do as little as possible and go easy on the stitching!
That didn't last long as I have been quite enjoying getting back into it all again, so I decided to try something different where I could stand for a bit without tension in the shoulders and neck, so here is what I am up to, reverse applique.  

I am being disobedient because I blanket stitched around all the shapes, but as I enjoyed doing it I think one must out weigh the other, well that's my story and I'm sticking to it lol

I am going to have a play on the machine with Romeo (dissolving fabric) for the mane and tail and I think I will add something in stumpwork, 

Off to play, enjoy your day
take care

Monday, July 2, 2012


I enjoyed my goats cheese salad with honey dressing the other day at the beach, so as not to leave DH out I made my own version, just adding a few extra ingredients and tomatoes.  Not a thing was left on the plates, so I suppose that speaks for itself.

I did mention that I had dabbled at a couple of things during my 'away time', here are a couple of them, during a conversation with DD it emerged that her needlework box had been left behind in the UK so I thought I would add a couple of little extra gifts for her recent birthday and made the little mouse pin cushion and needlecase which I also filled with all sorts of needles, pins safety pins etc etc as you do.  She was pleased but I really don't know how much use she will get out of them as she is really not interested in needlecraft at all.  In fact just the other day she asked if I could mend a layered summer skirt where the layers and lace were drifting apart, no problem, then I found she had already tried to fix it herself at some earlier stage as I tried to prise out rusty safety pins and staples lol  where's there a will there's a way

I was looking for a project to take with me whilst waiting for DD in radiotherapy and found a printed panel of 6 cushions in my stash.  They were just right, no thinking involved, no piecing, yes I know, cop out! just quilt the design, so having layered them up I took them along and they made their debut, now for some reason we have noticed that many of the people waiting just don't take anything with them, just sit getting agitated, but I could still talk to DD and stitch.  Now what I hadn't anticipated was the others watching me and then asking me what I was doing, unfortunately my spanish is still not what it should be so all I could do was smile sweetly and keep my head down.  I actually finished quilting all 6 and we now have nice new cushions for our outside naya.
I have been following others blogs, just not felt able to contribute but enjoyed all the projects, then a couple of days ago Clare showed us the lovely dish covers she had made.  Feeling that was just what I could do with right now, I was game to have a go.  Fell at the first hurdle, bias binding!  Didn't have any, don't know where to get any here either.  Then light bulb moment when I remembered a huge box of notion goodies that came from the days when my parents had a little craft shop so my Dad could present his Tiffany glass work.  A good rummage revealed a little binding maker, with instructions, (luckily) and so I ventured off into unknown territory, and it worked.
I'm sure all you seasoned quilt makers are wondering what is she on about it's easy, well I couldn't make it line up but after several unpickings got there in the end.  Obviously more practice needed.
So I was really chuffed to have made 2 covers and thank Clare very much for the idea.

Only problem is I couldn't get the start and finish edges to line up nicely, so if any one has any hints/tips on this binding lark I would be pleased to hear from you

Oh well, that time again, off to do the evening meal
take care