Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Curtains

Before Christmas my daughter Sarah asked me to make curtains for her bedroom windows. There are two windows. Thankfully small but, they proved to be a little tricky in the making. The fabric is a lovely Cath Kidston print. Because the windows are small and in a recess they have a bespoke iron rod with a curly end to them meaning that ordinary curtain headings would not work. They had to be bagged out and hidden tabs added and the tabs had to be deep enough to fit over those curly end brackets. I am not a curtain expert and did what I thought would work. They look lovely and I am glad they are done and out of the way. I am also waiting for the call of "Mum, can you make the next pair?" .  Ask me if they were on my list! No, they were not. Silly me. Could have had a few finishes here.


Also, not on the list was a little bit of crochet in the form of a dolly blanket for Maisie. This ball of yarn was winking at me on top of my knitting basket and I thought it was perfect for this quick project. It is actually sock yarn and a double knit and I made a mistake buying it thinking it was 4 ply. It made up very quickly. Good practice. It is stretched out and pinned to my carpet. Looks much better for it. Makes for a jolly expensive dolly cover but I was never going to make up a pair of socks with it.


My friend Janet knitted Maisie a beautiful sweater when she was born and she is just growing into it in time for the cold weather.


Time to think about what is on that list and tackle something. Desperate for a finish ( not counting the two items not on it) I chose to do the binding on this quilt. It has been staring at me for so long and I hate doing bindings. At least now it is done and crossed off. Just needs a label. Daisy may get her quilt very soon. It is so cosy with that flannel sheet backing.


On Saturday we had a little run out to Dunster for lunch. It felt too cold to be wandering around and we did not hang around for a walk in the Castle grounds.


These three handsome chaps were the recipients of a bit of Christmas stitching. Olly my Son in Law, his brother and his Dad. Surname Young. Scottish connection. Clan Young tartan. Ties and waistcoats. The ties nearly drove me mad but the waistcoat was sheer pleasure to make. One day they may have an occasion to wear them. They look pleased. 


For Sarah there was enough fabric left over to make a lined wrap and in my stash was the perfect Liberty fabric given to me many years ago by a friend. So you see, I may not be posting very often but I am being kept busy.


I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you for your patience and understanding during the recent email blip. I sincerely hope you were not affected or infected.

Happy Stitching.

Love Shirley.


Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Virus

Hello everyone. Just to alert you that if you have a dodgy looking email from me please DO NOT OPEN it. I have not sent it. I apologise for this. Trying to sort it out.

Shirley.

Thursday, 1 January 2015

New Year, new list.

A brand new start to a brand new year and I love the positive feel that this brings. I like to think that there is the opportunity to start afresh and make new plans. Last year was a pretty exciting one in lots of ways and may be hard to beat.

The first thing I like to do in the new year is to plan my sewing activities and there are some lovely things happening later in the year. I have yet again written a list. I call it A Quilter's Dozen. Twelve items to be worked on and a thirteenth which invariably gets me into a lot of trouble. The thirteenth item is always so much more exciting and anything goes. If I can tackle those things on the list I shall think I am doing well and any finishes will be loudly cheered. The eagle eyed amongst you might notice several things on there that have appeared on previous lists.


I was given this lovely notebook by my friend Kate. I love notebooks. This one came from the Quilter's Guild of the British Isles. Inside it has a handy little ruler which detaches from the spine and there is a good mix of lined and plain paper. I think it will be quite useful. My new mantra for 2015 is "Eat, Sleep, Breathe, Stitch It". It covers a multitude and in past years my words and resolutions have not lasted very long. This will be a work in progress I think. Does anyone keep to their resolutions? Last years word was Content. I definitely failed to deliver more content on the blogging front but ending on a positive I definitely felt most content on Christmas Day.


Also inside the notebook are a couple of handy plastic pockets and oh joy! Graph paper. I love graph paper. You never know when inspiration is going to hit and you need to jot something down or draw it.


The new year has got off to a good start and I have finished five blocks for the Stonefields Quilt. Cheating a little as I had prepped them a few days ago but it feels good to be able cross something off the list already on day 1.


Total blocks now made comes to 25. I am loving this project but feel glad that I am not following it as a Block of the Month because I get so hopelessly behind. The secret to this project is preparation. For the next set of blocks I may prep a job lot and then I can just stitch.



That leaves me now to just wish you all a very Happy New Year. May your year be filled with love, laughter and plenty of stitching.

Love Shirley.

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Oh! Modern Christmas Tree

A few weeks ago my friend Stina from Kviltstina blog fame designed a pattern for a modern, low volume christmas tree and sent me the pattern details to proof read. I liked it so much that I just had to give it a go and put the Stitcherydo stamp on it.

I am proud and pleased to report that mission was accomplished and it is finished and hanging up on my hall wall. Three weeks from start to finish is little short of a miracle for me plus it is machine pieced AND machine quilted. Is it perfect? No. Have I learned things from making it? Yes. Do I love it? Absolutely.




Everything came from my stash. I did not buy a single thing. Did not realise I had so many lovely glittery christmas fabrics although one was a recent acquisition. The squares were already cut and stashed away from a session of making use of scraps. New they would come in handy one day. Free motion quilted tree bark and straight lines of quilting half an inch apart and it was done. I used a iron on glue based wadding for which I can only think I bought for bag making but it worked well and stayed in place and was in my stash waiting to be used.

If you want to make one of your own then there is still time and you can find the details on Kviltstina blog where Stina has generously shared it as a free pattern.

Happy Stitching.

Shirley.

Monday, 24 November 2014

Stonefields

There is nothing like a new project to banish the post wedding blues. I have had this pattern for a while now but  after seeing lots of scrummy versions on social media sites thought it was time to dive in.

This is Stonefields by the talented Susan Smith of Australia. This quilt was made as a commission for a film being made in Ireland. As of yet we do not know who is in it or the title but I do hope the quilt gets more than a bit part

These blocks are 6.5 inches and there are a total of 121. 

It is such a soft and gentle quilt and very pretty. These four stars are in the corners of the quilt. they are then surrounded by a border of flying geese and then a large border of appliqued hexagons. Pink, hexagons, sounds like a me quilt.

 
Trying to use as many different fabrics as I can.


 
Now we are up to nine and a hexagon rosette.  A great tip from a blogging friend who said to cut and make them as you go. Every time I use a fabric I cut hexagons and flying geese.

 
I love this block. The hardest part is choosing fabric and trying to use fabrics in unexpected combinations. Some of these pieces are quite small so it is fun digging into the bag of scraps to see what emerges.

 
For some time I have been collecting shirting type fabrics and they are coming in very handy for this project. The difference in hexagon sizes. The middle one used for the border is 3/4 inch and the ones in the blocks are 3/8 inch.

 
The next three prepped and ready to go.

 
Growing.

 
Should you want to join in and make your own version of this beautiful quilt then you can buy it from Susan or indulge in a block of the month from The Running Chicken.

Thought I would leave you with one more wedding photo. All ready and waiting to go. Maisie thought it was great fun and posed perfectly playing peepo with the bedpost.


Happy Stitching.

Love Shirley.

Monday, 6 October 2014

New Hat


In my life I wear many hats. I am wife, mother, sister, niece, auntie, great aunt, granny and I wear them all with great pride. In the last few days I have acquired a new one for I have become a Mother in Law.


This beautiful daughter of mine became a bride to marry her school sweetheart Olly. They have been a couple from the age of 15 and inseparable since. We love him as if he were our own.


A joyous moment when they became man and wife. Happy faces all round.


A tender moment.


Here I am with my immediate family and wearing my new hat.


Little Maisie was a bridesmaid and walked up the aisle with her mummy. Maisie is now a very confident and amusing one year old. That time has flown by.


Sarah and Olly with Bridesmaids, Sarah, Rachel, Leilee, Mel. Groomsmen, Ian, Simon, Lewis, Andrew, Tom, Best Man and Olly's brother.


Sisters.


Of course there had to be some things to be made. Labels for suit/dress covers. Believe me when I say that saved a whole load of time having them labelled. Two waistcoats. Jar covers for jam and chutney made by the bride and groom. Lavender hearts for the dresses. Bunting and baby bunting for the table plan. Not to mention bunting for the top of the cake. Now I need a week away to just do some catching up on neglected stitching projects.

It has been the most wonderful of weekends. The venue at Muddifords Court Contry House was second to none, the Posh Picnic by Scoff was unique and yummy and the Groove a licious Band great dancing entertainment. Amazing flowers by Suzanne, friend of Olly's mum. To share it all with our families and friends was simply the best.
 
 
With Love 

Shirley.


Thursday, 14 August 2014

Joy of Life

Last week I met for the first time a very dear and special friend who arrived in the UK from Sweden to visit the Festival of Quilts. She came bearing the most beautiful gift. I had seen glimpses of this quilt as it was being made but with no idea it was for me.

It is called Joy of Life and is a pattern by Rosalie Quinlan. It is simply beautiful and I love it. The quilting on it is amazing and I shall treasure it for always.



Made for me by this beautiful lady known as Stina. We met through blogging, have very much in common and met for the first time last week. We are soul sisters.


Stina brought with her these equally beautiful ladies.

Karin, Marica, Stina.

Stina and Lilian. They were sitting on the naughty seats on the back row of the bus.


We stayed near the iconic Bullring Shopping Centre in Birmingham and Friday night we ate out at Jamie Oliver's Italian. We had a great night and I have never laughed so much. These Swedish ladies were the best company. You can read and see more at Stina's and Marica's blogs.


This church is right by the Bullring and looked beautiful lit up.


I came away from Birmingham feeling  tired  but good tired. Shopping is exhausting you know but it could have been from carrying multiple bags of purchases. I am in weight training for next year. I came back with an impressive haul of goodies but the most impressive treasures are the memories that are firmly printed in my brain of this fabulous time with the most wonderful ladies who I can now call friends. 

These are the of the Joys of Life.

Happy Stitching.

Shirley.x