Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Flying colours

Today was a big day in our household! I don't know if I've ever mentioned that we have been home educating Jess for the past year. We found the education system to be too inflexible for Jess' health issues so we took the decision to go it alone. Frankly, it was one of the best decisions we have ever made, I actually wish we'd done it sooner!! Today we had our first annual inspection visit from the Local Authority Specialist Teacher for Elective Home Education (now there's a mouthful!). I'm happy to report that we passed with flying colours so we're good to go for another year! Woohoo, go us! I never imagined that we'd find ourselves in this position but actually it is quite liberating. So, to celebrate today's success I thought I'd show you some finished goodies :) Here's the Authentic friends cushion all finished up and ready for Jess.
I backed this with a print from Ikea that I had already used to make a floor cushion for Jess.
Today was also momentous in the fact that I finished the behemoth that is The Half Time Quilt!! I have been totally dreading having to quilt this monster since finding out it wasn't good enough in the jelly roll competition. All I can say is thank goodness for fusible batting!!
I did my usual straight line quilting, well face it there was no way I was free-motion quilting this 6 foot square monster!
I used some leftover strips from the It's a Hoot jelly roll I used in the quilt for the binding. I absolutely love how it's finished up and will now be hoping that it survives it's first pass through the washing machine!
Catch you soon x

Thursday, 22 September 2011


I'm playing around with some new graphics so apologies if this page looks different every 2 seconds :)

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Cooper's cushion

A little while ago I showed you this sneaky peek at some quilting with a promise of more when it arrived at it's new home. Today it arrived! So I can show more.
My delightful, bloggy friend Bree had a gorgeous little baby boy, Cooper, in August and I wanted to mark the occasion with a little gift. I remembered Bree commenting on this pooches and pickups project of mine and starting the hilarity that was 'road-kill cushion', so I thought it might be fun to make a cushion for Cooper using this fabric but this time with no road-kill ;-)
I did a little bit of piecing and embroidered Cooper on the bottom half. I have to say I think it looks really cute!
The back of the cushion is an envelope closure using a solid and the 'road-kill' print ;) In this project there is no sign of a heavy duty pick-up truck to run those puppies over, phew!
There you have it; Cooper's cushion. Catch you soon x

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Please help if you can...

You may remember I mentioned a bloggy friend, on September 11th, who has lost a beloved member of her family. Well if you are willing and able, you have the chance to help this lovely family in their time of need. I've copied this post in its entirety from The Scrappy Appleyard blog. Thanks in advance to those of you that read on and follow up :) Here are some shots of blocks I made this afternoon if you need some inspiration.
The below is going to have a sash added to it to make it up to the right size.
Blocks Needed for Grieving Family
I've never been good at asking for help....
but I'm going to on this one.
I know the heart of quilters....
I am going to put together quilts for Tory, Chris' Mom
his two brothers and one for the
soldier who was his best friend
and who fought right alongside Chris...
and was
when he took his last breath.
I'm going to do the quilts in a muted red, white and blue
And I thought 'Star' blocks would be so appropriate
in this situation.
I would so appreciate any of you who
would like to help me in this endeavor.
I need 8" blocks
(Finished Size of Block to be 8 1/2")
and when I say muted...
the best way to describe it...
is kind of like the Minnick and Simpson fabrics
that are always designed for Moda.
(They don't have to be Minnick and Simpson though!!)

We would be so grateful for any!

I would so appreciate it too,
if any of you would like to copy this post on your blog.
I'm hoping Tory will help me sew them all together
to help her in her grieving.
I'm also going to try to get a local group
together to help out as well,
when all of the blocks are received.
If at all possible we need the blocks by end of October.
You may send them to:
The Scrappy Appleyard
3218 Knobview Drive
Nashville, TN 37214
Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
You all will never know how much your comments, prayers
and thoughts have helped us to get through this tragedy.
May God bless you all...

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Authentic friends

When the post appeared yesterday morning there was a small package for me from a name I recognised. I wasn't expecting anything so was amazed when inside I found this bundle of yumminess!
Fiona very generously sent me some craft size squares from the Authentic charm pack she bought to use in her Pillow Talk Swap cushion. I can't begin to tell you how chuffed I was but given that I dragged myself off my sick bed to sew with them immediately I think you can work that one out for yourself! I have rather belatedly fallen in love with these text and neutral prints so cannot believe that Fiona was so generous as to share these with me for no other reason than she wanted to!! Much love to Fiona xx
I didn't have quite enough stamina to finish this off but it will be a cushion!
I used the perle threads that Fiona had wrapped the fabrics in to do some straight-line embroidery on the linen sashing.
Typically the curse of the teenager struck again and Jess has declared this soon to be cushion hers (although, apparently she would prefer it to be a wall-hanging)! One of these days I will start something for me that ends up being for me!! I've straight line quilted to add some more texture :)
Hoping to finish this off tomorrow.... Hope you've had reasonable weekends :) Catch you soon x

Tuesday, 13 September 2011


You know I love a good swap! I've done plenty in the last year or so. I've always been blessed with fabulous partners but this time round I'm gobsmacked!! In the For the love of solids swap I was paired to receive from quilting royalty, none other than Carol (Mamacjt)! Can you believe it?! I was so excited when I opened the rather large box and caught sight of a cotton reel necklace. Could I be so lucky? Yes I could! Carol had posted a thread on flickr asking for details that she could use to personalise a caricature and I'd duly added my details in the hope rather than the belief that I'd be lucky enough to be her partner. I was so excited I whooped out loud and was thankful for a strong pelvic floor ;) So here I am in all my glory! Carol you are AMAZING!!!
As well as being fabulously talented Carol is also extremely generous! Just look at all the extras Carol sent me....be jealous folks, it's all mine!
That's 2 of her very own patterns, a solids charm pack and a chequerboard with mini buttons for chequers!!
After all that excitement I am totally exhausted and unusually for me, stuck for words now. Wow! Thanks Carol, you are a total rockstar!

Monday, 12 September 2011

The things I do for love

It's Yvonne's month in Fresh Modern Bee 2. We've been asked to use Oasis by Three Sisters to create floral blocks. This is a very dodgy picture of what are actually very pretty fabrics.
Today I set out to make my block; I had in mind a bouquet. My sewing machine had in mind other things. First it bit me...
then the needle snapped spectacularly...
Anyway, after much mopping of blood and swearing I managed to finish the block and it got away unscathed! I used the floral die I had at Christmas with my Go!Baby.
I have done a very rustic raw edge applique, hampered somewhat by the finger injury!
I'm pretty sure that Yvonne will love it. One of the bonuses of being in a bee with your Mum :) Catch you soon x

Sunday, 11 September 2011

As we remember

Unless you live under a rock it's likely that you know today marks the tenth anniversary of a terrorist atrocity that has had lasting consequences for the whole world. The whole thing was just horrific and it was impossible not to feel moved by the enormity of what had happened! I remember the shock of that day and the fear I felt for my cousin and his wife, the newly-weds, as they had moved to New York the previous month. It was a very stressful time as there were no telecommunications for most of that day but thankfully they were fine! Ten years on so many more lives have been lost or changed beyond recognition because of that day. Just the other day one of my lovely bloggy friends lost someone very dear to her in Afghanistan. I'd love to see the end of the heartbreak that so many families, military and otherwise, have to experience every day. Maybe one day!

As I can't leave a post without a photo here's the final pay it forward mini cushion that I made while listening to memorial services. A cross/plus design with tufted tweets :)
Stay safe lovely people. Catch you soon x

Friday, 9 September 2011

American Jane

Thanks for all your encouraging comments about The Half Time Quilt. Today I've made more progress on the pay it forward front. Only one more to go!
I love this American Jane fabric; 'Snippets' for those that don't know. It's so lovely and vintage looking.
I think I'll have to make a larger version of this for me :) It's been lovely using some favourite fabrics that I've had lying around for a while. What are your favourite fabric lines? and what projects would make you cut into them? I'd love to know :) Catch you soon x

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Mixed emotions

Now that I've got a short breather between swaps I've got on with my pay it forward commitment! One down, two to go :) I love this fabric and will definitely feel slightly sad when I get round to posting this one but I'm fairly certain the recipient will appreciate it so...happy thoughts.
Some of you may remember that I entered a competition earlier this year to design a quilt pattern for publication in a jelly roll book. Well, needless to say I was unsuccessful but I thought I'd show you the finished quilt top anyway. Here's The Half Time Quilt:
I finally got word today that I have the rights back to the pattern so I will be publishing the pattern here soon. Whether anyone will ever use it remains to be seen but as I went to all the trouble of writing the pattern it seems a shame for it to go to waste. It's super easy to make and I think it's perfect for beginners as it's so simple. This quilt top is huge (to me anyway) at 72" square....I'm dreading quilting this one! I have made some smaller items using the same method so when I put the pattern up I'll show the variations too, whether you want to see them or not ;-)

Finally, another reason to smile appeared at my door last night...
...woohoo, a full fat quarter set of Little Apples from the USA. I just couldn't wait for them to come in over here and at just about £50 including customs and p&p I think that was a bargain! Catch you soon, I'm off to stroke fabric x

Edited to add Free Pattern now available here I'm not sure how to upload a pattern that you can print off but if you want a version that you can print send me a message and I'll email it to you. If you do use the pattern I'd love to see your finished product :)

Monday, 5 September 2011

Stuff and nonsense

I love a good post day! My gorgeous Doll Quilt Swap arrived today all the way from Vegas! My partner, Karie (Four monkeys quilts) sent me this beautiful solids quilt. I'd somehow managed to miss it in the group pool but I absolutely love it! This will be living in my sewing room :)
Check out the cute label :)
Karie also included some goodies for me. Those stamps are so me! I think I might use these on quilt labels in the future :) I have been such a lucky swapper!
I've been quiet on the blog these last few days as I've been busy creating. Here's a sneak peek of a pooches and pickups project that's currently on its' way to USA. When it arrives at its' destination I'll show you more :)
I've also been doing some creating that's a bit different for me. A while ago Jess bought a new album for her iPod by Sixx: A.M. and some of the lyrics really struck me. The idea for a wall-hanging based on the lyrics was born and now I've finally made it. I need to bind and back it but in essence it's done. I don't think I've ever made anything that has been inspired by lyrics before.
The main inspiration was the message not to judge a book by its' cover, so I've made books on a bookshelf with words from various songs on the album that are relevant to Jess. (As an aside, I need a shelf with trams/trains on it like this one). This book with "I dare you" has a cover that Jess found ugly (I disagree, as I love it!)...
but inside it holds a fabric that she really likes. I've written some of the lyrics inside to remind her :)
It also refers to "places that scare you", hence the book title below and the large piece of echino at the top of the wall hanging. Big cities are certainly scary places at the moment for Jess but one of these days she'll look back and wonder what all the fuss was about :)
Unfortunately for me, Jess was particularly underwhelmed by my creativity so I thought I'd better do something about that. Here in progress is a Guns n Roses cross stitch for my "sweet child" :)
This is apparently much more cool....kids, there's no understanding them!
Apologies for the rather random collection of thoughts today I've been really distracted all day. Hoping to make more sense the next time...I won't be holding my breath though ;) Catch you soon x