Thursday, 29 March 2012

Let's hear it for the girls...

...of the Fresh Modern Bee 2! Thank you to the following fabulous ladies who provided the awesome blocks that lead to the making of one of my happiest quilts EVER! In no particular order:
Lynne, Danielle, Amanda, Lil, Leila, Susan, Amy, Lisa, Alison and Krista. You can see the individual blocks that they created for me here. The quilt finished up around 60" x 64", so just right for snuggling in. I took advantage of another gloriously sunny day to get pics on the washing line, excuse the shadows of the washing :)
I backed it with 2 of my favourite prints from Amy Butler's Love range, yum!
Here it is in situ on my bed! I do have to confess that it will probably be living downstairs though so I can snuggle up in it when I feel like it and just look it at the rest of the time ;)
I'm astounded by the girliness of this quilt, it's really out of character but there does seem to be a pink thing going around here at the moment. Another peek at the backing fabric, just because. Once again I bound this one with the pink herringbone from Joel Dewberry's Modern Meadow.
I did very simple straight line quilting in pink and blue Amy Butler Love threads from Rowan. The quilting is rather shoddy but I did manage to find this bit to show you that is not too bad.
There's a real sense of satisfaction in me that this beautiful (even if I do say so myself) quilt has been put together from blocks around the world. Who'd have thought that so many diverse blocks could look so fabulous together?! I for one totally love it and will treasure it for EVER!! I actually feel a bit teary now it's finished. Thanks ladies!! Catch you soon x

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Putting quilts to good use

Today I read this post on Lynne's blog which got me thinking about an unfinished project I've had lying around since October. I had great plans for this quilt which fell by the wayside and the idea of resurrecting it to benefit children in care just seems perfect. Lynne has set up a Flickr group where more details will be added if you're interested in finding out more.
I love the Sherbet Pips and I'm fairly certain that they'll put a big smile on the face of an unknown child this Summer.
I'll be finishing this quilt off in the next week or so ready to send it on to Lynne. I'm sure that between all of us bloggy quilters we'll manage to rustle up at least the 50 quilts Lynne is aiming for in the first instance. Catch you soon x

Saturday, 24 March 2012

Something strange...

Something very peculiar has happened in my house today! I thought I'd try my hand at putting together a blogger bundle for Katy and Brenda's contest. This in itself is not strange but my fabric choices surprised me! There is a whole lot of pink going on and anyone that knows me well knows I'm not a pink girl.
The fabrics I included from left to right:
Top row -
Middle Row -
Bottom Row -
I have absolutely no hope of winning a contest like this but it's been fun imagining what it would be like to make fabric bundles for other people. It's really difficult choosing from all the gorgeous eye candy over at Pink Castle Fabrics but what a fun way to waste some time ;) Hope you're having a good weekend. Catch you soon x

Friday, 23 March 2012


I've been having such fun (said in best Miranda voice) adding to my Bee quilt. This is a seriously happy-making (not a real word) quilt. I just smile every time I look at it! Denyse Schmidt is an amazingly talented designer, I don't think I've come across a range by her that I don't like and Hope Valley is one of my all-time favourites.
This is the completed central panel. I'm going through the process of adding scrappy borders and then I'm done! I'm hoping to finish the top this weekend.... Hope you all have a fab weekend. Catch you soon x

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

New York

It occurred to me today that I haven't shown you my progress with the blocks for the New York Beauty quilt along. The block patterns are here if you fancy making your own. I was true to my word and completed 4 of the first week's block 0. Love!!
Week 2 and block 5. This one was rather more time consuming so I've only made one.
This week is week 3 and block 1 is the order of the day. I started mine last night and finished it off this afternoon. It was another time consuming one but well worth it.
Here they are all playing along together. I'm so loving this block a week thing! I still don't know what I'm going to do with the blocks yet but it's nice to see them all coming together.
Thanks to Melody Miller for the inspirational fabric that led me to use this solid palette. Hope you're all having a good week. Catch you soon x

Monday, 19 March 2012

Waffling on

I'm feeling rather waffly today so please excuse the state of this post. I'll start by saying a huge thank you to Angela (Wandafish) and Leanne, who were the successful bidders on our charity quilts. Thanks also to the other bidders that took part, they helped us raise £67 for International Rescue Committee.
This morning a rather lovely package fell through my door; the first installment of my Flea Market Fancy revisited stash, whoop!
While I had the camera out I took a few shots of the cot bumper I made for Mackinlay. I used a Hideaway fat quarter set that Jade bought before Mackinlay arrived :)
It's a really pretty range which had more or less escaped my attention for some unknown reason. I've used a few layers of batting so it should keep Mackinlay's head safe from bumps :)
I got to try out my new Frixion pens for drawing the quilting grid and have been absolutely delighted with how well they vanish on ironing! I quilted with the fab variegated Aurifil thread that Kerry sent me for my Swoon Quilt. I'll have to get Jade to take some photos of the bumper in situ so we can see how cute it looks in the cot.
I've done a bit more playing with my Bee blocks today. I started off by framing the signature blocks from the ladies of the FMB2.
Then I got down to the wonderful business of improv piecing for a change! I really love the whole process of cutting, sewing, cutting, sewing etc according to how things are looking rather than being guided by block size.
I'm still muddling around with the blocks but it's starting to come together in my head. Hopefully progress should be quite quick now I have an idea of where I'm going with it. I might even manage to get some daytime shots of it so you can see the colours properly!
Hope all is good wherever you are. Catch you soon x

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Last chance and one for the ladies

First things first, I'm not going to apologise for reminding you that our Charity quilt auction for Japan ends tomorrow. Thank you very much to the lovely folk that have bid so far! Here's a pic of the quilts side by side...not too shabby even if I do say so myself ;)
This week I took delivery of a 30yd roll of heirloom batting; there's no way I can hide that purchase from hubby it's huge! I got fed up of buying packs of batting every 5 minutes only to discover they're not quite big enough for my finished....insert project here... so I bit the bullet and splashed out and am hoping that it will be the economical option in the long run. It has already been put to good use in the making of a cot bumper for my gorgeous nephew. I'll upload some pictures eventually.
While I was super-sizing my orders I bought an industrial cutting mat too. It's 23" by 35" I think and is fab! I'm thinking I might need to get a bigger ruler now ;)
Today I spent my afternoon writing a strongly worded letter/book to my MP, after which I felt the need to have a little fabric therapy and now that I have a huge roll of batting there's no excuse not to start another quilt. Luckily for me most of the blocks have already been made by the lovely ladies of the Fresh Modern Bee 2. I've given up hope of receiving a couple of the blocks but I've got a fantastic selection to be going on with! This evening I've started playing around with a potential layout and have made a few of the signature blocks to be included somewhere in the mix. You'll find better close-up shots of the gorgeous blocks I received here.
I'm really excited about putting this one together. I'd almost forgotten how much I love Hope Valley! I'll hopefully have more progress to show you soon in better light. I'll be back tomorrow some time to let you know the results of our auction. Catch you soon x

Sunday, 11 March 2012

For Japan - A year on

I can't quite believe that it is almost a year since I posted this for {Modern} Relief - Japan. As you may remember the charity raffle had to be cancelled due to red tape. Well, Yvonne and I have both kept hold of the quilts that we made and we felt that it was fitting that today on the anniversary of the Tsunami in Japan we would try to sell them for charity. I'll briefly refresh your memories of my quilt and introduce you to Yvonne's for the first time. Mine is the extremely colourful one using prints from Breeze by Wendy Slotboom and Sunkissed by Sweetwater with a few others thrown in that I can't remember :)
Here's a close-up of some of the text print.
I backed with a print from City Weekend by Oliver and S and bound with the chairs from Tufted Tweets by Laurie Wisbrun. The finished quilt is approximately 42"square, so a decent size for a lap quilt.
Yvonne used Grandmother's Flower Garden by Rosalie Quinlan for her quilt. You can see more photos here. This quilt finished up at approximately 48" by 49", so again a nice lap quilt size.
This range is really beautiful and slightly richer in real life than in photos.
This quilt is embellished with decorative stitches in variegated thread.
So, now you've seen both the quilts I'll get to the slightly awkward bit where I give you the links to the ebay auction. We have listed both quilts separately and have set a starting price but no reserve. 100% of the sale price will be donated through Missionfish to International Rescue Committee who are still working with the Japanese agencies in some capacity.We're happy to post internationally and we're paying the postage costs whatever they may be. The ebay auction is open for a week and if they do not sell in that time we will be passing them on to a local charity so that others will benefit from them regardless.

Here is the link to the ebay listing for the Spring Relief quilt.
Here's the link to the ebay listing for the Grandmother's Flower Garden quilt.

If you would be prepared to help us get the word out about these auctions we'd be really grateful, so if you wouldn't mind a quick shout out on your blog or facebook or twitter or shouting out in the street if you prefer, that would be amazing! If not that's fine too, we just would love to be able to raise a little bit of money to help after being let down last year. Well done if you survived all the way to the end of this post :) Catch you soon x

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Diamonds are forever

Yesterday I laid my OCD to one side and finished Angela's quilt! The colours in the photo are still not quite right but this is much closer to their true brightness. I would like to point out that the orange on the second row is a print not a solid as is the one on the right hand side on the third row (ok, so I couldn't quite put my OCD aside). Now it's all quilted and bound I have to confess to loving it!
I backed this one with the text fabric from Ikea that I also used to back my Sliced Coins quilt. It's such a versatile fabric, I hope that Ikea never stop selling it!! You can see the straight-line quilting a bit more clearly from the back as I used a black thread.
I bound with a grey metro circles print from Robert Kaufman which looks pretty yummy even if I do say so myself ;) Here's a posh macro shot that Jess took for me as I'm useless at it, thanks Jess!
The finishing touch comes in the form of the first outing of our new quilt labels from Karen! Here's another Jess shot.

So that's it all ready to be wrapped and posted on to Angela. I'm hoping to post it Monday along with packages for Susan and Judith (sorry ladies for my tardiness!) Hope you all have a lovely weekend. Catch you soon x

Thursday, 8 March 2012

OCD overload

I have had a couple of days of OCD overload trying to fix on the layout for Angela's quilt. Today I had to grit my teeth and accept that the world would not end if 2 prints of the same type were right next to each other! The result is a finished top of about 36" by 48". Even with a bit of photo manipulation the colours are still way out but I'm hoping you'll get the gist of it from this shot. Hopefully I'll get a better shot of the colours tomorrow in the daylight.
Now for the usual trauma of deciding on how to quilt this....Catch you soon x

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

New starts

After a sad trip out this afternoon to a family funeral I was in need of some fabric therapy so I started 2 new projects. The first one is a block for the New York Beauty Quilt Along. When I saw this one advertised a few weeks ago I just knew I had to join in even though I need another project like a hole in the head! Anyway, the quilt along started properly yesterday so I'm not too far behind for a change :) I imagine that there will be lots of fabulous variations of this pattern so it will be lovely to see them all taking shape in the flickr group. I've used a print from Melody Miller's Ruby Star Shining range with some complementary solids in cotton and linen for mine and I love it! I've cut out the fabrics for 3 more blocks so I can make a full circle and might look at them tomorrow if I get chance.
The other project I started is a quilt for Angela (Wandafish), who was one of our giveaway winners. These are the fabrics I will be using. I've gone for vivid colours alongside monochrome prints. In my head this will be completely beautiful when it's finished, fingers crossed it works in reality! Well Angela, I did say that I would go multi-coloured for you so I hope this doesn't scare you too much :)
There will be many large half square triangles like these. I intend to sew more tomorrow!
Hope this week has started productively for you too :) Catch you soon x

Thursday, 1 March 2012

This, that and the other

Hello all :) My silence has been a screen for lots of activity of the stitching kind which I'd love to share with you but can't just yet. Hopefully you'll think it's worth the wait when I can reveal all! In the meantime there has been a little sewing activity that I can share with you :) You might remember that I started the Kaffe Fassett Not So Lone Star quilt last year. Not a great deal of progress was made on it last year as frankly I was nowhere near skilled enough to tackle it. After a really productive year I feel much more capable of tackling all those diamonds and to prove the point I have finished the first of eight giant diamonds! This photo doesn't really show the scale of this block but each side is around 30". I'm hoping that if I do a row a week I might get round to finishing this top in 2012....won't hold my breath though.
This year I've really tried to stretch my hand sewing skills. I'm naturally very impatient and I have always associated hand sewing with long term and by definition slow projects so have tended to give it a wide berth. Well, no longer! I've seen so many inspirational hand projects in flickr/blogland recently that I just couldn't resist joining in. So, last night while I waited for my templates to arrive from Katy I thought I'd practice with some hexies. It would appear that hexies are hugely addicitive, much to Mum's amusement! I think I'm quite a way off being as mad about them as Mum but I can see their appeal more now than I ever have. Here's my first flower.
I've taken them to heart so much so that I've given them a home in my pouch that I made with my fabrics from Karen. All neatly packed away so I can grab them if I need them :)
Talking of Karen, a little while ago I commissioned her to make some quilt labels for us and today they arrived! How cool are they? Karen has made the screen for these so I can order more when we run out, I can't wait to use them :) I'm sure that if you fancied some for yourself, Karen would be more than happy to consider another commission.
And finally, I received a fabulous package of Heather Ross charms from Susan that I won in her recent giveaway! How cool is that?! Thanks Susan, you rock! My mind is already whirring with ideas of how to use them with the rest of my Heather Ross stash. Those plans will be on ice for a while as I have a million and one other things I need to do first but it's lovely to have such pretty thoughts :)
Catch you all soon x