31 December 2010


With warm wishes to all the readers of my blog

This clip is from the Graphics Fairy
I hope that you have a Happy New Year and that its everything you wish for.

Best wishes


Review of 2010 and Looking Forward to 2011

(This is a longish one, I suggest a cup of tea first!)

I thought I would end this year with a review of what I've made and look forward to the sewing challenges that lie ahead for 2011.

I've taken part in 4 workshops this year, 2 of which were with Philippa Naylor back in January after which I felt I gained a wealth of piecing and quilting knowledge. The next was a handbag workshop with Barnsley Embroiderer Sheila which was really good. This followed in November by a Pat Archibald weekend workshop of Ghost Images at the Silver Thimble, which despite the challenges of the weather was very enjoyable and again learnt a lot from this.

I took part in 8 postcard swaps plus 14 further postcards for birthdays with the BQL postcard group and some more postcards were made for an exhibition and sale in Norfolk for the Teenage Cancer Trust back in April.  In June BQL itself had challenge it's members to a postcard swap and a further 6 were made for that.  So an awful lot of postcards were made this year, so for next year I will be cutting back on this and just sticking to making cards for the birthday swap on BQL Postcard group - that is, of course, if I can resist the other swaps that come up during the year.

I have made some other things though - Freddie had a quilt made for his first birthday earlier this month.  Isobel also had a bunny and quilt that I made for her first birthday in March.  For August's Festival of Quilts in Birmingham I made 2 Pennants for Patchworkers. I bought tombola tickets for that at the Festival but didn't win a pennant. I made 10 "Wiggly bags" for the Liberty Rose Trust, for young cancer patients , which I sent off in October.  For a change I made a bag from fabric constructed on my embellisher machine, but that was the only embellisher make that I have done this year.

There was a Secret Santa on BQL this year, for which I made a Biscornu pin cushion, a mug mat and a small notebook, which I sent of at the end of November for delivery by the beginning of December and to my shame I didn't take a photo!  I also made a couple of cushions for my brother-in-law and his wife and took a photo of one, but not the other.  Another Christmas make was a puzzle block called Kath's Kubes which I  made for Isobel, who likes fiddling with things (a bit like me - I don't often have idle hands).   Here are some photos of the different sides.

I nearly forgot I also made a present for my Dad - a bottle bag from Susan Briscoe's Sensational Bags book, which did very nicely for the bottles of wine and sherry that I know he likes.
And also a Christmas stocking for David's cousin's baby, Samantha, who was born in the summer, which was sent over to Canada at the end of last month.

Lastly here are some things I received for Christmas from the BQL Secret Santa - a cushion cover with 3" square blocks and the last of the Touch of Bling postcards.

For 2011 I will be returning to Poole (more of that in another post very soon).  Before then Philippa Naylor returns to Barnsley Embroiderers for another Saturday workshop which will be the last one that I will be going to before I leave Yorkshire and is called Contemporary Curved Piecing which I am really looking forward to.

As mentioned earlier I am cutting back on the postcard making as I would like to make a large bed quilt next year to replace the 10 year old one that we already have - not sure at present what form or even what colours this will be but feel I want the challenge of making something larger.  On BQL Kandy (the moderator of the group) will reveal what her 2011 challenge is tomorrow. If it is what I think it is I might enjoy that too as previous challenges (the bags and the calendar quilts) have been completed items and I think this one will be.  I will be going to Exeter for the Quilters Guild AGM and conference for that Saturday of the conference weekend in April.  I hope too that I can get back into the fold of quilters in Dorset once again.

24 December 2010


A HAPPY AND PEACEFUL (or even Pieceful, if you're a quilter) CHRISTMAS TO YOU ALL.

I'll post during the Christmas break of things I've made but couldn't show and other bits and bobs.

19 December 2010

Catching up

This past week has gone in a flash.  Have been working and will continue to work until mid January and it's quite a busy place.  It's great I'm earning, but I haven't got the Christmas cake done and will have to do that tomorrow as I've had some sewing to do today (another Chrissie present so cannot show here). 

We've been lucky not to have had snow, only snow showers on Thursday but the drop in temperature has made things icy.  David and I went to York for last minute shopping (I've now got his present sorted- phew!) and he went to the National Railway Museum and I had a visit to the Quilt Museum.  I couldn't take any photos of what I saw at the museum and didn't have my camera with me so here's the link.  The Barbara Bailey exhibit was interesting as she was one of the founder members of the Guild and died in the 1980's so her work and the fabrics used were of the 60's 70's and 80's.  It also had a display of her sewing equipment and a small cabinet of the miniature quilts she had made.  David also had an interesting time at the NRM as he found at that the engine Sir Nigel Gresley was going through York station of an excursion trip.

So not much sewing to show, but I can show some cards I made at cardmaking class - the last one this year.  Bit uneven, bit wonky but like the effects.

Whoops! Took the Father Christmas photo upside down!  It's meant to be a double sided insert on the card with some thread twisted so he spins round but I made some mistakes with that.  Now I'd normally use Wednesday morning to have a go again while things are fresh in my mind, but not this time.  The little girl card turned out a lot better - I quite like making that one.  Just like quilting, you have a design that you like and will make again and another that, well, made once you're not in a hurry to do again.

I've also been in receipt of some Bling postcards this week and they are really brilliant.

The group are sideways on even though I'd rotated it in i-Photo. 
And a belated birthday postcard!  I knew that Lesley's was going to be late and there had been trouble with the post from Scotland so a nice surprise when it came.

House is getting more Christmassy. There's jobs to be done before the guests come on Christmas Eve.Work to fit in too. But I'm getting there.

11 December 2010

Christmas Cheer

Since posting about the bad weather, David and I managed to get away from it and head down South last weekend and stay with my Mum & Dad.  We had Santa Special train tickets booked on the Mid Hants Railway for the children and grandchildren as we will be spending the Christmas holiday in Yorkshire this year.  It was a chance to also exchange presents too so the majority of our shopping is out of the way already. 

Before we left we found some of the snow trying to thaw, but the weather was still bitterly cold. David could not resist taking a picture of this very long icicle hanging from the gutter at the front of the house. Although the snowy weather continued after our return on Tuesday, all of a sudden it just vanished on Friday and continued to thaw today just leaving some bits where the snow was piled up while clearing the drive.

The little ones enjoyed their train trip with a visit from Father Christmas, though maybe Isobel was a little young and was scared by the big bearded one.  After that it was a trip down to Eastleigh and the soft play centre that's popular with all four of the little ones.

Here's Leo, Sophie and Isobel waiting for Santa

and Freddie getting his present
The four together
 Now something of a sewy (rather than snowy) nature.  You might remember a few posts ago I mentioned about the Bit of Bling big postcard swap, and now I'm receiving cards from the swap and here they are below:-

 The cards above are from (clockwise from top left) Irene, Lis, Lois, Alice and Jan
These are from (again clockwise from top left) Barbara, Pauline, Dawn, Avril and Jacquie.

I've looked back at my blog and realised that although I've written about this swap I haven't put any photos of mine.  I'll put that right - here they are

Mine are made using Christmas fabric with organza (some with sparkly stars on them) and I trapped snowflake sequins and Angelina fibre between the 2 layers.  I added more sequins and stick on gems on top and finished with gold or silver braid or ribbon.  I used bits that I already had for this with added to the variety.

I am always surprised with the variations that come with each theme of postcards, which I think make them enjoyable to make and receive.

I almost forgot, I now have a job for a while.  I'm now working in Wakefield again, near the city centre after 3 months of not having any (paid) work.  It's a temporary job which'll last a few weeks so see how it goes.

02 December 2010

Snow, snow and more snow

We've had snow in Hemsworth since Saturday - it was only a dusting then which didn't stop us from going away last weekend, however it had got progressively worse over this week.  With the threat of snow I went and got some shopping  to get that out of the way so I could stay in, and I think half the town were there too doing the same thing.

It started on Tuesday and going into Wednesday morning with further heavy snowfalls during the course of the day.  We've now got about 18" of snow judging by our patio table where the snow's been collecting over the past few days.  So here's some snowy pics

Snow on Tuesday

Snow yesterday morning - probably well over 12"

My car is under there somewhere

David's working from home

Our bench is disappearing

Snowy hats on the wheelie bins

The snow is getting deeper on the patio table