Busy, busy days but happy, happy times! Recently I went with Darling Daughter to a craft exhibition. The show was located in a beautiful village, encompassing the lovely 15th Century church, village hall and community centre. We have visited Gresford Festival of Crafts many times and never been disappointed. See http://www.gresford-craft-group.co.uk
The amazingly good crafts are displayed in the church, draped across the pews and decorating the nave. We wandered around happy to soak up the inspiration, colour, textiles and peace!
A beautiful display of Daisies hiding in the graveyard
The church is surrounded by a grove of yews, some of which are equal in size and age to those of Overton listed in the Seven Wonders of Wales. Twenty-five of these were planted in 1726, but one growing near the south gate is older. It was already an ancient tree at the time of Richard II‘s proclamation that ordered the general planting of yews to support the army and the use of yew in the Longbow.
I’ve been crafting away getting ready to cruise and teach crafts on a cruise ship. The cost for me is in stocking up on materials, making the crafts and organising the programme. Making the crafts is great because I get to let my ideas run riot and ( hopefully) materialise as something people would like to make. The initial outlay is not inconsiderable but also good fun. Today I bought safety pins! The plan is to make bracelets.
These are fairly easy to make but you do need a degree of dexterity as they can be quite fiddly.
I have just ordered 20 boxes of these pins! It’s surprising the variety of pins available but as I have to cater for up to thirty participants this seems the easiest way to stock up
I’m nothing if not indecisive! I have thought this project through and gathered together the necessary. I’ve researched, upcycled and finally started to work on my future travel project. I don’t like it! I like the theory, I enjoyed the ideas book and I tried hard. However I don’t like it!
On review of my first hexigan ( which would be the first of many) it just doesn’t work. The beautiful Harris Tweed is too thick when folded over. It doesn’t sit well with the vintage embroidery and in short it doesn’t work! No amount of pressing will improve the look, but I haven’t abandoned it completely.
I adore the vintage embroidery which was worked by my Grandmother over fifty years ago. Don’t worry! I only cut up the cushion cover because a Grandchild tried to colour it in with a permanent Felt tip pen! So….. rethink, re trench and start again.
I did like the embroidery that I had done on the reverse of the hexigon so I intend to incorporate that into the “take two” project!
This is the second plan. I love the Harris Tweed that I’m going to use and I’m delighted to upcycle my Grandmother’s vintage embroidery.
I couldn’t make my mind up which of these two books is my favourite. The book “A Trip around the Wool” is a great book and up there among my current favourites. It’s a bi lingual book in both French and English and beautifully illustrated. I’m just starting a project titled “52 Happy Memories of 2007”. The aim is to create an embroidered hexagon each week culminating in a 52 hexi quilt. I’m already falling behind so nothing new there.
The second book “Stitched Memories” by Tilly Rose is a glorious book sub titled “Telling a story through cloth and thread” which sits well alongside the other book. I’m using old embroideries and Harris Tweed to create my memory quilt. But lots more about that as it starts to come together.
No WIFI and that’s my excuse! Oh and I’ve been trying to focus-well sort of! I have been away quite a lot. One week looking after little Sis whilst she recovered from first episode of chemo and my birthday celebration in the Lake District. No don’t ask how old – just old enough to know better!
The week with Sis was in her caravan in Snowdonia and we actually had a great week! Fantastically she wasn’t too sick just uber tired. We travelled around each day visiting beautiful tourist hotspots and treated ourselves to lunch out every day and in search of crafty bargains and ideas!
I am delighted to confirm that I was craft focused and completed a patchwork quilt that I must have started four or more years ago. I had no binding so I made up my own by joining on the bias, left over pieces of the quilt topper. I am really pleased with the result
I also sorted out my current knitting. I had made it unnecessarily complicated. I had never before knitted an ” all in one”cardigan. I have almost made it to the neck so pictures will follow ( eventually)
Another week and more attempts at focusing. This past week I have worked hard at finishing not one but two Quilts! The first quilt is a lap quilt destined for my gorgeous granddaughter. It is soon to be her birthday but this is not a “real” birthday gift. I don’t mind if it’s kept in a cupboard so that one day, in the distant future, she can take it out and snuggle up thinking of me! I am really looking forward to giving it to her this weekend.
The second quilt is also on the edge of completion. I made this quilt perhaps three or four years ago but never finished the binding. I am delighted to report that this WIP (work in progress) should be finished this week. I am so pleased that my halo is choking me!
The motivation to complete these Quilts has been not just the pending Birthday but the thought of starting another quilt! This next one is a Block of the Month and has just arrived. I can’t wait to start it and I’m certain that I will be blogging about this new quilt in the near future!
Darling Daughter and I went to a quilt and craft exhibition last week. It was in a very old church in a lovely village called Gresford.fThe exhibition is located in the beautiful village church. As we walked up the church path we were met by a Yew tree. This tree is 1600 years old!! Now that is old!
The interior of the church is traditional and quite magnificent made even more so by the Quilts and crafts draped over ancient pews and hung by stunning stained glass windows. The Quilts were displayed to show the artistic and imaginative work to its best. I must apologise for the photo quality which was due to the reduced lighting (that’s my excuse!)I couldn’t ignore the wonderful Quilted Santa Claus or the many Quilts hanging nearby
This particular quilt was made using vintage lace doilies. Now I know what to do with my doily stash!
This wreath was good food for thought using Tweed, felt and Burlap. It was a super day out, full of inspiration and information. Oh and I must say that the village hall made a great cafe with tasty cakes, yummy sandwiches and good coffee.
The final project that we worked on whilst on our recent crafty cruise was a gadget bag. It started out as an iPad cover and then I realised not everyone would have or want an iPad! The patchwork quilted bag evolved into a project that could be adapted for tablet case, make up purse, sun glasses case or whatever your imagination decided. This guided but flexible project allowed the crafty ladies on the cruise to sew wherever their ideas took them.
The original idea was to use a “Grandmothers Fan” pattern which is attractive and a challenge for novice patch workers. I seriously underestimated the ability of many ladies on the course. The majority wanted to give the “Grandmothers Fan” a go. We provided the template, choice of fabrics and guidance and away we went. It was great fun and wonderful to see the delight when the padded bag was finished. I
have to admit to there being minimum quilting due to time constraints. Many of the ladies wanted to carry on crafting long after the class finished. It was rewarding to see many ladies on deck, enjoying the sun and stitching with enthusiasm between formal sessions.
The cruise was a great delight. We visited Portugal, Madeira, Canaries and Spain. I explored crafting emporiums, fabric shops and market stalls. We met lovely people and an adorable crafting group of ladies ( men tended to come just to see what their wives were up to!). Most of all we had fun! We have been so very lucky to have this opportunity and hope with fingers crossed that we can do more cruises. I have an ambition to craft my way around the World so watch this space!
I seem to have misplaced my crafty Mojo at the moment! I’m not sure where it is but I can’t seem to motivate myself to do anything crafty. So I took Benji dog for a walk whilst I mentally searched for the elusive Mojo. On this lovely walk near to my cottage I thought long and hard about all my PHd’s (projects half done). It took a few mental exercises to recall some long ago started projects but I wrote them down as soon as we got home from our walk. I’m still not certain that I have recalled them all but here goes:
1) Gorgeous green knitted dolman sleeved sweater from a 1952 pattern. This wool cost a fortune so I really must finish it.
2) Bee keepers quilt made from knitted hexipuffs. This blanket will take YEARS to finish but I could do with a new blanket so I must make an effort.
3) Secret Christmas present nearly done. This may be redirected to a worthy cause but we will see.
4) A patchwork quilt with a village theme/pattern. Not too much work required to complete so one big push would do it.
5) A quillow which just needs finishing touches.Vintage,upcycled,
6) Up cycled vintage jewellery roll. This is a prototype which I WILL finish next week.
7) A patchwork quilt that only needs the binding and a little quilting.
8) Traditional pieced paper patchwork quilt with not much completed.
9) Fabric for a flowery dress but hasn’t met the pattern or seen the sewing machine yet!
10) A cut out stretchy skirt for summer which would take two hours max to finish but….
I am very good and really enjoy starting a project but rubbish at completing -obviously. I am sure that there are multiple other projects lurking in my project box somewhere. Maybe one day soon I will make a supreme effort but in the meantime I will just take Benji dog for another walk.
Whilst cruising through Pinterest I came across a beautiful quilt made from vintage handkerchiefs. What a good idea! Something new, small and cheap to collect (handkerchiefs not quilts!) I could do this and when I’ve got lots of handkerchiefs perhaps I will make a quilt.
We are currently away in Damnvan1 for the weekend. We arrived in Buxton, Derbyshire yesterday and what a lovely town. It is a Georgean spa town with the most beautiful Pavillion and gardens. There are some good shops and, great joy, LOADS of charity shops. I made one small purchase, an embroidered tray cloth and a vintage handkerchief.
Now I have the start of my collection of handkerchiefs. Only one but its a start!