Sunday, 27 October 2013

Blogger's Quilt Festival Fall 2013 Part 2 - Two-colour quilt

Hello, thanks for stopping by. I almost forgot to post this, my second entry into the Blogger's Quilt Festival hosted by Amy. Apologies to regular readers who have already been bombarded with this quilt :)

When I saw the two-colour quilt category I knew exactly what I wanted to enter. 
Earlier this summer I designed this quilt called Sneaky Stars for Justine at Simply Solids. It's a really quick, easy but effective pattern (even if I do say so myself). I made a few variations of the pattern in the design phase but this is my favourite version of the pattern. I love the simplicity of the blues and white together. I picked out the white stars with a gorgeous Aurifil variegated thread.
I love the simple improv back almost as much as the front.
So there you have it, my second entry. There are so many gorgeous quilts again this time round, so don't forget to check the others out if you haven't already :) If you're in the UK stay safe during this stormy weather! Catch you soon x

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Blogger's Quilt Festival Fall 2013 - Throw quilt

It's that time of year again. The big kids are off playing at Quilt Market while the little kids stay home and take part in the virtual Blogger's Quilt Festival hosted by the remarkable Amy. It's always fun to see fabulous quilts made by people that are new to me as well as my old favourites :) If you're new here, hello, we hope you'll find something that will make you want to come back again. If you're a regular you're welcome as always!
Apologies to regular readers who are probably sick to death of my Marcelle Medallion quilt but I just love it so decided to enter it into the Throw Quilt Category.

I couldn't resist jumping on the band wagon earlier this year. This quilt pushed me right out of my comfort zone and saw me wander from the safety of using a whole fabric line from one designer. I absolutely love the end result and it's fair to say that I'm a lot braver with my fabric choices now. Here's an in progress shot so you can see some of the fabrics a bit more clearly. Many of my favourite designer's are represented in this little lot.

I had fun hand quilting with a lime coloured perle 8 thread once I'd done some basic straight line quilting to stabilise the top and backing.
The finished quilt has been auditioned in various locations around the house; the landing,
on the bed...
and now resides on our bedroom wall.
I posted quite a lot during the making of this quilt so just search Marcelle Medallion in the search box at the top of the blog for more information if you're interested.

There are loads of fabulous entries in the throw quilt category so don't forget to check the others out! I'll be back tomorrow with another entry. Happy weekend to you all. Catch you soon x

Tuesday, 22 October 2013


This week has confirmed to me that I am addicted to fabric and sewing. The first indication of the level of my addiction came with the arrival of my new sewing table. Excuse the mess I'm too tired to tidy but just about rested enough to do a small amount of sewing ;) We decided against going down the homemade route for the craft table and instead relied on good old Ikea. This monster is nearly 5 foot square, no more scrabbling around on the floor while basting quilts, woohoo!
The second indication was that about 30 minutes after the postman delivering this gorgeous package from Sarah I was "racing" up the stairs to sew them together on the machine. Yep, first time using the machine since my op but well worth the exhaustion! I knew it was a good idea getting the ladies of the HipBees to make string blocks for me :)
The third indication was a bit groundhog day...up the stairs to the machine I went this afternoon with this package of goodies from Amy. The result was equally pleasing :)
This is most definitely going to be a favourite quilt! Look how gorgeous they are next to each other :)
If I hadn't already been convinced of my fabric addiction the final indication was the overwhelming need to start another hand-sewing project having been woken in the middle of the night by an idea! I started with this tray of yummy fabrics (I've added more since this photo was taken)...
 and very soon these
became this.
I just love this combination of colours at the moment. I'm not sure how big this is going to grow but for now I'm just enjoying the process. Suffice to say I feel much more like myself now I've got some "proper" sewing done. I'm some way off wrestling with quilts but a cushion isn't too far off achievable now :)  Catch you soon x

Friday, 11 October 2013


Long time no speak. Thank you all for your get well wishes! I'm slowly starting to recover following my surgery and 2 post-op infections. I'm not back to sewing on the machine yet but I have managed to do a bit of tapestry and hexie stitching so it's not all bad. My sick bed is rather welcoming so it's not a chore to spend time on it. Hubby hung my Marcelle Medallion for me last weekend :)
It's my turn to be Queen bee in the HipBees. I foolishly thought it would be less stressful to have the other bees sewing for me this month, knowing that I wouldn't be able to sew and not wanting to let anyone else down, what I didn't consider was the amount of work involved in putting the fabrics together for 11 people...anyway, 3 weeks after starting to put packages together they are finally ready for posting and will be on their way to the other HipBees tomorrow :)
I've asked the HipBees to make 8 small string blocks each for me so that I can finally finish a project that I started last year. Each package contains a lovely selection of Denyse Schmidt fabrics; Flea Market Fancy, Hope Valley, Florence and Shelburne Falls, some grey kona strips, a grey rectangle for writing their siggies and 8 -  5" squares of paper for use as foundation templates.
Half the bees will have predominantly red/pink/orange/brown fabrics with half as many blue/green/grey fabrics and the other half will have the opposite. Each bee member will make 4 straightforward string blocks like so...
...and 4 diagonal string blocks like so...
When the blocks come back to me I'll be constructing the larger finished blocks like so...
The centre of each block will house the siggie of the Bee member :) I'm really looking forward to this one being finished! I just know it's going to be another family favourite. 
I hope you all have a lovely weekend. Catch you soon x

Friday, 4 October 2013

Wedding Anniversaries and Quilts

Hello all! :)

It's Jess here, I thought I'd pop in to tell you about the goings on in the Nellie's Niceties world (I even have my own colour, fancy that!).

Yesterday was Reene and Simon's 15th wedding anniversary, which they kept repeating throughout the day because they couldn't believe it. Hehe. :D Here they are on their special day:
Please ignore the reflection, I haven't quite sussed out how to not have reflections in pictures! Yes that is a grumpy little me in the middle there. I really didn't like mum on the day of the wedding, as she didn't look like her!

Yvonne made a lovely scrapbook page for them. Isn't it pretty?!

I made them a card at last minute. Oops. Please don't judge my drawing ability, I inherited the non-drawing trait (that's a thing now, okay?) from mum!

Don't ask where their other arms are, I had enough trouble drawing the two! I think it looks like them a lot! They loved it so it was worth the effort. :)

Here's a sneaky hint of something to come from Yvonne:
Can you guess what it'll be? :)

On another note, Yvonne finished Reene's get well soon quilt. Just in time for autumn!

I tried being artsy, did it work? It goes perfectly with our d├ęcor downstairs, so mum is looking forward to snuggling up to it downstairs. :)

Sorry there isn't much wording in this post, I'm sure Yvonne would have had some elaborate story to go with it but I couldn't think of one, as I was only a young babby when they were married! I've had right trouble with blogger using the pictures, I'm not used to how this works!

Update on mum is that her nausea and dizziness has come back a bit worse, due to antibiotics she's taking. She's currently having a doze but hopefully she'll feel a bit better soon.

See you in the next post! x


Wednesday, 2 October 2013

I do like.....

...... to make and give presents.

I've been thinking of making 'thank you' gifts for two of our neighbours before we move on from our rental home.  They have gone out of their way to be welcoming and friendly and I wanted to show my appreciation to them.  

The first lady is in her late seventies and has traditional tastes so I delved into a box of vintage fabrics and put together an assortment of creamy florals.  I can't remember where most of them are from, just bits and pieces from here and there that I couldn't bear to part with because..... Well, because... they might be useful .... one day??   It was an interesting trip down fabric memory lane, not because the fabrics reminded me of something I'd made or worn years ago, but because they made me realise how my fabric tastes have changed over time. 

As they weren't fabrics from my 'precious stash' ..... hmm I think maybe I should be ashamed that I just said that?  So, moving on quickly and hoping nobody noticed what I said.... I decided that I'd try not to be fussing and faffing about placement and just wing it and see how the mini quilt evolved. Now, if you knew me well you'd be gasping at that statement!  Honestly, you would. If we wrote a family dictionary, the definition of fussing and faffing would be - Yvonne!!
 Why even my sewing machine is a Pfaff.  :-) Snap decisions and winging it just do not come easily to me. Actually, that's really quite an understatement. But I did it and I really enjoyed it and I like what I made, because I know she will like it too and that's what counts after all.

Disappearing nine patch blocks randomly placed
and framed by three different sized borders.
Excuse the light in the photo, as usual not sure how it happened!! 
Lavender bag to match.
Now that's a better photo isn't it? Sometimes I do get it right.  Although I probably have no more idea how I do than when I get it wrong!
She gave me some lavender to dry from her garden so that I could make lavender bags so it was only fair to make one for her too, wasn't it?  Actually, there was only enough for one bag but I didn't have the heart to say. :-)
The second gift was for a much younger lady and the fabric and cushion shows perfectly where my tastes and style are at right now. 
The front
You see, totally different.  I tell you, I had such a hard time handing this one over!  I think I remember she had to prise my fingers from around it.  Although, my brain has blanked the awful experience out of my mind! Self preservation I think. :-) 

The back
I love the back as much as the front. I even fussy cut the fabric for the buttons to match the centre hexie on the front.
Fabulous Pam Kitty fabrics, I think it's the Love selection by Lakehouse fabrics.  I still love florals and whimsy but the palette I choose is very much more diverse than previously. And thankfully, I still have fabric left to make myself another cushion!
I wonder have you noticed how your tastes have changed as you move through your quilting life? I'd love to know. :-)
Thank you so much for vising.
Take good care of yourselves and happy sewing. Xxx