Tag Archives: Quilting

Focus!

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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.

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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!

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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!

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Quilts Quilts Quilts

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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!

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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!)20170623_111147I couldn’t ignore the wonderful Quilted Santa Claus or the many Quilts hanging nearby

20170623_112936This particular quilt was made using vintage lace doilies. Now I know what to do with my doily stash!

20170623_113151This 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.

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Cruise project – gadget bag

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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!

Cruising and Crafting

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The craft group that we ran on a recent cruise was a great success. We had a great attendance lots of enthusiasm and all very enthusiastic crafters. We worked through three crafts in seven days at sea. Time was a bit of an issue as we were only allocated an hour at a time. The ladies in the class would have liked to extend the sessions, which is a great compliment.

Whilst each class was organised to make various items, we encouraged anyone who had their own project with them, to bring it to the group and join us for the company and friendship. This worked as people shared their skills and ideas. Throughout the cruise we asked anyone with a top tip to share it with us. We collected thirty crafty cruising top tips which I will share in a future blog.

The crafts that we demonstrated and helped the ladies to make were:

  1.  Quilting.
  2. Patchwork.
  3. plain sewing.
  4. applique and
  5. embellishing. imageimageOn the last day of the cruise we organised an exhibition of the crafts created on the cruise. This was a lovely event and a final goodbye to good friends and a great holiday.  I will show you some of the lovely things that were made in the next blog so watch this space……

I love to Blog!

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I love to blog!

I love to craft!

I Love to love!

I found a recently written list of my UFOs ( unfinished objects). It made me smile as this list has not ( or hardly) altered. OK I’ve ticked off a few, but at the same time I’ve added a few. It is only with considerable effort that I have not added more UFOs (or WIP works in progress). Actually if these PhDs (Projects half done) were a visible mind map of my brain activity it would look more complicated than a pile of unravelled yarn. I constantly look, imagine, desire, seek inspiration for more projects whether sewing, knitting,crochet, fabric art, decorated journals, etc etc

Ive got all these thoughts going round in my head and what am I doing? BLOGGING! Well the blogging does help me to focus. Apart from inspiring, me these multiple craft blogs help me to channel my ideas. The BIG problem is that I am constantly demoralised by how prolific these fellow bloggers are. They churn out multiple finished garments, up cycled items and cleverly altered crochet. Or do they??

Another thing that I constantly do is make lists! That brings me back to the original paragraph in this blog.

My Current UFO List:

1) Gorgeous green sweater using Rowan Mohair Haze.

2)Hexipuff quilt -Bee keepers Quilt

3) Christmas Scarf for DD

4) Hexigon cotton quilt.

5) Nearly completed Village Quilt

6) patchwork quilt which only need binding.

7)  up cycled jewellery roll

8) Skirt to be sewn

9) Nepal sweater

10) Felt appliqué tool bag

On the subject of lists I was interested to read a blog Dream big,Dream often by Daniel Ray. He has published a post titled “Wealthy habits vs Poor habits-statistical data”. Within this blog it states that:

“81% of wealthy maintain a to-do list vs 19% of poor”

Now I’ve got my multiple lists so where is the wealthy?

PhD and Dog Walking

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imageI 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.

York and The Quilt Museum

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This week a friend and I took ourselves off to York to treasure hunt in the charity shops, search the craft shops, visit York Minster and the Quilt Museum. The highlight for myself was the Quilt Museum. I am so glad that I made the effort as it has long been on my “must do” list and I discovered that it is closing in October. A good job that I didn’t put it off much longer!

Friend had free tickets to the Minster and as I’d been before I took myself off to the Quilt Museum. There were three exhibitions in a gloriously Medieval hall. A real WOW setting.

1) All Shapes and Sizes

A stunning collection of quilts pieced to perfection.

2) Chinese Whispers Challengeimage

A quilting challenge whereby the first entrant creates a quilt from a photograph, takes a picture of it and passes that onto the next entrant who repeats the process.  Interesting take on the parlour game “Chinese Whispers”

3) Voices from The Inside ( my favourite)

An exhibition of creative quilts hand-stitched by prisoners trained by Fine Cell Work.

A great day out but sad the museum is closing. I will tell you more about crafts in York next time!

Love Is!

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Love is………

Memories.

I am putting together a scrap book of many of the things that I have made in the past. Sadly I don’t have photos of a lot of the items as they were frequently made as gifts, worn out or just out of fashion and charity shopped! I love taking the pictures or trawling through old pics to seek out the more vintage items that appear in old photos! I LOVE the memories that come flooding back. I also LOVE the scrap book as it gets filled up.

Love is……..

Stationery.

I LOVE my Sharpie pens. They are the most versatile, colourful and useful coloured pens e v e r ! Almost every craft project requires stationery! I need “post its” for note taking ideas, page markers, note books, pencils and files, not to mention coloured paper, albums, and of course more pens. Oh don’t forget files, boxes, scissors, paints, and always more pens.

Love is……..

Crafting.

I have crafted for ever! I love to knit, stitch, sew, quilt, re-purpose, crochet. I love to read about crafts, plan to craft and write about crafts! As a child I knit and sewed doll house curtains. As I teenager I made my own clothes and seat covers for the family camper. As a young woman I dress made and knit for my children. As a mature woman I now attempt a multitude of crafts!

Love is……..

Blogging

I love to blog! Blogging is a great log of all my crafting projects, both current and past. Blogging is also a log of all my vintage finds and some of my belongings. Blogging is a great way to chat to like minded people. I don’t look for monetary reward for my blogging (although it would be good if I knew how!) I just love to blog.

What a week!

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image image imageWell! What a week! Hubs has been in hospital to have a new knee. I’ve been in sole charge of house and dog. I have also shopped, washed, chauffeured, and most importantly walked Benji dog. I have been chief walker for about six or eight weeks, since Hubs knee became much worse. The problem is Hubs has set the bar high with respect to length and frequency of dog walks. Not one to disappoint Benji, I have increased my own walking tremendously. Now I would like to say that I am now much fitter and thinner…..

Hubs was discharged on day three following his minimally invasive, computer positioned new knee. Clever stuff! Now I am nurse, carer and cleaner as well as head dog walker. My chill out time has consisted mainly of reading. I love to read but have limited time to devote to this treat. I do find that blogging and reading blogs is a wonderfully enjoyable but steals time from other leisure pursuits. On saying that I’m not about to give up my Blogging hobby!

One of the books I have nearly finished is a trilogy called “An Elm Creek Quilts Sampler”. This book is an easy read- a bit of a no brainer. It is a book to read in bed but I have enjoyed the stories. It has also refreshed my memory of quilting terms and techniques. Maybe I will get out one of my unfinished quilts and attempt to finish it.

The second is a book called “Pearl Lowe’s Vintage Craft”. This book I got out of the library and liked it so much that I went out and bought it. So much for my library economy! Still it is a great book.

I nearly forgot! I am also top fire lighter. Now this is a real problem as I am a rubbish fire lighter. Don’t tell Hubs but whilst he was in Hospital I struggled so much to get a decent fire going that I went to bed and read under my electric blanket to keep warm.

Appliquéd Quilt

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Confession time…… I have only competed one quilt in my whole life! There! I’ve said it and got it off my chest! This is IT!

I made this quilt at Liberty Bell in Chester. It was a “Block of the month” and I made it about three years ago. I actually worked very hard to finish it for my Mums Christmas present that year (see I work better under pressure). Mum was delighted with the quilt but asked me to take it home as it might get stolen. Not true. She does live in a care home and is paranoid about someone taking her stuff, which they won’t. Anyway I’ve ended up with her gift and love it.

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I made this quilt using a lot of appliqué , some embroidery and plenty of patience. It was my first attempt at machine quilting and it shows. The quilt is titled “Autumn House” and is typically American themed with pumpkins, birds and lovely crooked houses. It is backed using a contrasting sprig fabric. I always like to use 100% cotton fabric and threads.

I promise to finish another nearly done quilt this year. It’s probably a good job that I couldn’t start yet another quilt that Liberty Bell are advertising at the moment. I already have other calls on my time but maybe, just maybe. Stay in touch to find out what happens.imageimage