Change of plans

Hello everyone, hope you are all ok. I am here and not in Worcester visiting my sister and we did not go to Budapest either as sadly my Uncle John died the week before last so I have been to Spain instead to be with the family for his funeral.

It was all very last minute and slightly chaotic but I made the right decision to change my plans. We knew on the Weds night that Mum was not going to be able to come here to go to Budapest as he has been very ill for some time and she could not leave her sister Maureen so I was all ready to fly out on my own on the Sunday as she still wanted me to go and enjoy the holiday.

He died on Friday morning and I made the decision Friday night to cancel the holiday and booked a flight to Spain for the next day and arrived Saturday night.All the family came from England so though it was a very sad time we were all together which is the most important thing to be able support each other and my Aunt Maureen who has been so wonderful and brave during his long illness. Thank God for the internet so we could all get flights with little time to plan.

The reason I was going to see my sister in Worcester with Mum was that we have just welcomed a new member to the family, my nephew Sam and his partner Paige have had a beautiful baby girl called Ava Grace and we were going to meet her. We will postpone that until later on in the Summer when Mum comes over next.

So it has been a very emotional few weeks, very happy and very sad and just brought home to all of us the value of family and the love and support that they give us at the start and the end of life.

I have made Ava Grace a mouse as a gift, you may remember I was knitting various mouse parts some time ago and here she is, designed by the lovely Julie of Little Cotton Rabbits once again.You can buy the pattern for this and all the other animals here.

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This is my first mouse and I am very pleased with her, I am calling her Ava after her recipient and although I had some trouble with the nose the rest of the knit was fine and I am very pleased with the lacy dress and the very cute little tail!

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I also made some pincushions a while ago to add to my ever growing pile, these may go to Yarndale to be sold or they may be given as gifts but I love making them, so quick and easy.Patterns for the strippy one is here and the other came as inspiration from my Pinterest board here. There were no instructions for this one so just made it up as I went along!

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Am not going to be very productive over the next few weeks as I have a huge amount of marking to do which may take up weekends as well and some other sewing that needs to be completed but will keep revisiting my Pinterest pages to remind me of all the pretty things that I really want to be doing.

Take care and keep happy and thanks for visiting.

 

 

A little crafting

Hello from a very cold Yorkshire, I am currently sat watching the tiniest snowflakes in the world drift down and hoping it is not going to get any worse as we are off to see my brother and sister-in- law this afternoon.

I have had a lovely if very busy week back at work, new groups to teach and lots of preparation and marking to do so including teaching all day Saturday so nothing of note has been done this week. I did have a lovely time in my craft room last weekend though, trying out a new pouch tutorial.

I like the ones I have done previously but the zips do get a bit squashed when you sew them together and Pinterest helpfully provided me with a few more ideas that use zipper tabs to get over that problem.

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I also had some difficulty boxing the corners of pouches after they had been sewn together and this tutorial eliminates that by getting you to cut out the corners as you cut the bag and lining pieces. The tutorial can be found at Jedi Craft Girl’s blog here – isn’t that a great blog name?

I used plain zips this time, have just bought a huge bundle of mixed colours at a bargain price from this Ebay supplier Zipperstore. The fabric on the front is from some charm square packs I bought at Harrogate and it is lined with some white fabric with a rose print on. I may just keep this one for me as I like the fact that it stands up on its own, very useful for storage.

The other make was a couple of pin cushions, I have made lots recently  and will keep on doing so to use up scraps.

I made one version of this one last year for me based on a tutorial from Vanessa from V and Co here. She uses another piece of fabric as a foundation piece but I just sewed the strips together.

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This is a great way of using up scraps and looks so cute!

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Looking forward to next weekend when I have the whole weekend in the craft room again!

Take care, keep warm and thanks as always for visiting.

 

January thoughts

Hello and hope you are all having a good start to your crafting year. I have been thinking a lot about goals for this year, not resolutions but things that I want to get done and so thought that putting together a list on the blog would give me a point of reference.

I like the idea of looking back at what you have done and looking forward to the future, January being named after the Roman god, Janus, the god of doors because this month is the door to the year. The Roman god Janus represents all beginnings and possesses the ability to see all things past and future which I think is a lovely idea and why he is represented with two faces.

So what did I achieve in 2016? This was very much a year of new things for me, coming really from a couple of courses that I went on at Simply Solids where I learnt to make baskets and had my first experience with zips with my pouch. I also used some of my ideas from Pinterest for pincushions and the little houses and made a sewing machine cover.

Looking at my photos for last year it doesn’t seem as if I did a lot but there also extra things that I did like the gold braid on Ellen’s dress, finishing the tabard for Jamie, a ring pillow and the Christmas ornaments that were also completed. The fact that I changed job roles in the summer has also meant a lot less time for crafting since June though hopefully that has calmed down now.

So plans for 2017. First of all to tackle some of the pesky WIPs. Like most people I am a bit of a flibbertigibbet when it comes to crafting, I see a new thing that I want to do and then go off and do it and don’t finish other things.I have also been guilty of abandoning difficult things which is not good practice!

These all need finishing.The first one needs a frame but is done otherwise, the quilt block is part of the challenge that Helen, Sharon and I did the year before last. I have 6 blocks but need a few more. The cute car hexagons were supposed to be a present for a baby who is now two! The vintage crochet hexis are going to be a bee quilt cushion and the last set of hexis are a long term project which is good for travelling, I have made some more of these in Spain.

Then the new stuff. I would like to go back and make some more of the Splendid Sampler blocks, particularly these stitched ones.

I would also like to make some of the items that I have saved pictures of on the blog.They range from things from books such as the circular tile quilt and the triple hexagon tea mug  to more pincushions, pouches, baskets, mug rugs and bags from blogs, some of Lori Holt Bloom Sew Along and a Dresden block using vintage linen from a magazine.

I would like to do more of Jenny of Elefantz’s lovely embroidery, the hexagon and roses one above is one I have been meaning to do for the craft room but think it would make a great zip pouch as well.

I also need to find a use for these gifted hexagons from my friend Helen, zippered pouches maybe? Probably more likely than a whole quilt given my productivity!

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Finally there is more cross stitch, something I haven’t done for a long time but am feeling the urge for in preparation for next year’s Christmas ornaments.

Well that lot should keep me going for a while, meantime there is some crochet and lace zips calling me upstairs so I had better go and see what they want!

Take care and thanks for visiting.

Happiness is scrappiness!

Hope that you all had a lovely weekend, I really enjoyed myself being creative. Much as I love re-enactment I am glad in some ways that the season is over and I have lots more time at home in my lovely craft room 🙂

I was just playing with my scrap drawer most of the time, I have been very inspired by all the lovely things on my Pinterest board and have lots of left over linen from all my years of making kit for the boys so made a couple of pincushions from linen and some of the left over charm packs. Very pleased that everything here came from my stash, mind you I do have quite a large stash!

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This one is also a scissor holder, again inspiration from Pinterest.

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This one was scraps from the various craft room accessory projects that I have made over the years like the sewing machine cover, needlebook and pincushion. Am quite tempted to keep this as it goes so well with the craft room though am supposed to be making these as gifts.

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I used some of my vintage linen for this one, the motifs come from a lace collar that a friend gave me and the button was also from the collar.

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I have wanted to make a little house pincushion for ages and found a great tutorial here at Retro Mama’s site  that explains how to make them. There are also some beautiful colour combinations here at Craft and Creativity’s website  to inspire you. Look at this loveliness in Tilda fabric and with some cute birds – picture from Helena’s site.

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I have made two so far , using an offcut from the red charm pack square in the previous pincushion for a little window box. The pink and aqua one is definitely staying with me in my craft room !

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I think these are just the cutest things ever and will be making a few more. Jake suggested putting a cat in the window and if I can work out how to cut a cat that small I will.

So many more lovely ideas on my board still left to do, must make a start on the Christmas ornaments soon though, it is nearly October and only have one made so far which is not like me!

Yarndale went very well, Sarah sold lots of books and I sold nearly all the baskets and some of the pincushions. She will be doing another book and stall next year and wants more things from me, especially needlebooks so that gives me plenty of opportunity to get making.

Take care and thanks for visiting.

Pinspiration and perspiration

Hello, hope you are all looking forward to a nice weekend whatever you are doing. I am planning to make some pincushions, have got so many lovely ones saved on my Pinterest board that it is time for some doing rather than just looking.

I have got my friend Sharon’s dog Ted staying with me for the weekend while she and Sarah are at Yarndale  so Jake and I will be taking him for walks later on.

Jake is home with me for a few months until he hopefully goes to Japan next year. He is starting a Japanese course the week after next and in the meantime is working part-time doing bar work and dog walking so he is getting very good at canine control!

Have been working hard over the last couple of weeks getting the last of the baskets finished for Sarah to take to Yarndale so just thought I would show you the last few.

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I got this fab vintage sheep motif from Ebay, sadly only had the two, really love the pattern on the sheep.

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I also made another mini basket to put the needlebook and pincushion I made last year in, I also made a pink one of these a while ago.

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Along with the other baskets I made earlier and the Liberty and linen pincushions I had quite a lot of things for the stall so am very pleased.

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I do love the combination of Liberty fabric and linen and so will definitely make more things using that combination. These are the ones from last year that I made for Yarndale.

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I also still have lots of lovely themed stitching and vintage print material to make more as gifts for crafting friends. I also definitely need a couple more for me for craft room storage, you can never have too many cute fabric baskets 😉 and there is a gap on my shelf now these have gone to Yarndale.

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Sarah is selling copies of her latest pattern book at Yarndale, not only does it feature some gorgeous patterns again, this time inspired by the Beaubaton Castle from Harry Potter but also Ellie modelled again for Sarah and her picture is on the front cover!

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This would make a fab Christmas present for a knitting friend so do go and get some from her website here. It is great value and there are some beautiful designs as usual, the woman is a knitting genius.

I love the promo picture for Yarndale this year, look at the cuteness of this sheep!

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I now have an I Pad, courtesy of work which has the Pinterest app on it and I am loving the fact that I can add things from the suggestions really easily. I came across this wonderful site the other day, Gentlework.

Christine makes the most amazing things from vintage textiles and I have been so inspired by the beautiful things on her site. Do go and have a look at them, they are really delicate and inspired by nature and just lovely.

Right off to make pincushions – see you later and thanks as always for visiting.

 

 

A little more making and a fab(ric) find!

Hello again. Inbetween sorting out a Steampunk outfit and re-enacting I have been able to make a few things. Firstly a ring pillow for Ellie’s best friend Becky from University who got married this week.

The theme was linen and lace with dark blue so I used some of my vintage crochet stash and Jenny of Elefantz’s monogram patterns  as well as some flowers from an old pair of sandals that had worn out to fit in with the something old something new, something borrowed and something blue.

I am very pleased with how it turned out, I love the combination of linen and crochet and lace and have been saving lots of other inspiration pictures to my Pinterest boards.

I have also been saving all my tiny Liberty scraps from making hexagons and inspired by Pinterest and Crazy Mom’s month of pincushions  made these for Sarah’s Yarndale stall.

Was very pleased as well to find a fabric stall at the Steampunk market selling another version of one of my favourite haberdashery fabrics. The lady was called Jill from English Rose and she was very lovely. You can find her Etsy store  here.

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I have got this print in grey and black and cream and black and have used it for the cute baskets  and now have a whole metre in blue and cream as it was such a bargain 🙂 I also bought another print that I had seen on Ebay from the stall, love that sewing machine.

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I am aiming to make a few more fabric baskets  this weekend as Yarndale is only a few weeks away so better get crafting! Have a lovely weekend and thanks for visiting.

Quilting a rainbow

One of the things I love about seeing other people’s quilts is their use of colour. Sometimes putting together fabrics that you never thought would go, other times the use of a rainbow of colour that really stands out. Often it is the contrast between the fabric and the background and sometimes it is the quilting that helps the colour really pop.

This quilt entitled, ‘Bubbles of Joy’, by Anne Lilleholm Jorgenson is one such quilt, the fabric is gorgeous and what makes it really lovely is the contrast of the fabric bubbles and the quilting on the white background.

Another similar quilt used colour in the quilting really effectively, both sides, grey and black, were displayed and the contrast between the little pops of colour fabric and the quilting was really effective. This reminded me of the Spirograph toy we had as a child.

This one is called, ‘Atom’, and was made by Brenda Sanders.

In my craft room I have a stash of rainbow fabrics just waiting for the right project, they look so pretty on the shelf I really don’t want to cut into them! Maybe I could make something like this lovely hexagon quilt, sadly forgot to take a picture of the maker’s name.

There were also some gorgeous colourful  flower quilts like this one from Sheena Stubbs, ‘A Country Garden’.

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One of our other huge favourites was part of the Korean and Japanese quilters’ exhibition and was a pair of quilts which not only used colour really well but also wonderful Kantha stitching.

These are, ‘Lotus Pond 2 – Midsummer Day’, by SangSook Kim. We felt that not only were these quilts stunning but they felt like the sort of thing that we could actually make as the hand quilting used for the Kantha stitching is a lot less scary than the machine stitching in the other quilts.

The background is made up of wonky log cabins and that in itself is beautiful but the Kantha stitching and flowers really makes them into works of art.

Lots of inspiration again and has added so much to my future projects thoughts. At the moment I am working on two sets of things, a new set of Christmas ornaments using paper piecing and some more of Jenny’s lovely stitching, this time from her Primitive inspired designs from last month’s Stitchery Club. Looking forward to another delivery from her later this week.

Will show you more of that in a later post as well as some of my recent makes and fabric finds!

Thanks very much, as always for visiting, and have a great week ahead, the sun is shining in Yorkshire for the second day running which is brilliant!