Thursday, 26 May 2011

Retail Therapy

Just in case you have forgotten who I am let me tell you that I am still around, not achieving very much, but keeping up with you all when blogger isn't messing me about. I have tried to leave messages but somehow after a frustrating time it all goes to pot.

Well, I have finished block 7 of Camelot and as you can see they are coming along nicely. I do hope more people will give this project a go as it is fabulous. It will really test your piecing skills. My favourite is always the one I have just finished, so, on to the next one.

On Sunday I went to Quilts UK at Malvern with Kate and Margaret. Unfortunately there were notices around saying that photo's could not be published in any shape or form so cannot show you the winning quilt. Instead I will just have to show you the spoils from the retail therapy bit. Spoilt for choice and really not needing anything other than pins this is what I came home with.

A very pretty jelly roll pack

A pack of fabrics from Worn and Washed ( I love this stand and will happily stay at it all day just sighing and stroking the lovely used fabrics that Kim makes into such pretty quilts). In keeping with the worn and washed and recycled fabric philosophy Kim used old embroidered tablecloths as backings for some of her quilts. A great way to use up these items that we no longer seem to have use for and they can be bought fairly cheaply from a charity shop or car boot sale. I shall certainly be looking at these things in a new light.

A small bundle of wool fabric and a star pattern from
Madeleine Millington.

I had to have my little fix of Japanese books. I love them even though I cannot understand a single word. Luckily the diagrams and photo's are so good that it only takes a little bit of thought to work it all out. The other book is by Kathleen Tracy, The Civil War Sewing Circle.

Have already earmarked a few projects to do. This is only page 1 and look at all those scrummy hexagons. I know I am obsessed. A lot of the items in these books are small and therefore it seems a good opportunity to use up some of those scraps that I keep hoarding.

I also bought a ball of Noro Wool from The Knitting Parlour and had to start it immediately. I won't tell you what it is yet. It definitely isn't socks. It is unusual to see a knitting stand at a quilt show but I cannot pass it by without buying something as it is so good.

Barbara and Chris you were missed this year not having your stand in its usual place. I do hope you will be back again next time.

Happy Stitching.

Love Shirley.x

Saturday, 7 May 2011

Nicki's Wedding

Today is the wedding of my daughter's close friend Nicki. They have known each other since primary school when Nicki used to call every morning always with a beautiful, beaming smile. Her smile today was radiant. Along with a street full of well wishers we stood outside for photographs.

Admiring the back of the dress which was heavily laced and ruched at the bodice. At the side was a large sequined bow which was echoed with a smaller bow on the opposite side of the dress at the shoulder. She looked beautiful.

Rachel, one of 8 bridesmaids. Looking equally as beautiful.

All 6 of the older bridesmaids and the two flower girls.

Inside the car with proud dad Stuart and that dazzling smile. Off to meet her beau.

Wendy now has the borders on Laura's quilt and that little strip of green is the perfect shade. Kate helped and it is now sandwiched together ready for quilting. The outer flowers are going to be added afterwards. It is going to be so pretty Wendy and I love it. The pattern is from a Material Obsession book.

Margaret is working on a quilt that she fell in love with after seeing it in an Australian magazine. I cannot remember the name. This is one of the blocks. Very fiddly little pieces but so pretty.

Camelot - Block 5. For more inspiration and a glimpse at the beauty of these blocks then visit Valentina who is doing a wonderful job.

Happy stitching.

Love Shirley.x

Monday, 2 May 2011

Activity at Stitcherydo HQ

Come and take a peep at what is happening behind the door.

Daughter no.2 finally removed her furniture and her bedroom became my sewing room. A luxury I know, but it still has to function as an occasional bedroom. It has been painted and has new furniture. I have made a bold statement with the deep red wall and soon a sofa bed will join it all and it will be a pleasant place to sit and sew. This room has beautiful views towards the Quantock Hills. It isn't quite finished yet and still a work in progress but definitely on the list for a finish this month. In my capacity as Ribbon Cutter Extraordinaire I may invite a few guests and declare it open.

Blocks 3 and 4 almost complete and I am thinking about block 5. These blocks take some thinking about. Colour, how and where to best use it, plus which way to sew a seam and the direction in which it will lie so that it will lie flat, taking care not to stretch all those bias edges. As I am making these blocks I am stitching little bits of my friends into them. The blue/green stripe fabric points in block 3 are scraps from Pat's husbands shirt (scraps destined for the doggy cushions and rescued), the green fabric given to me from Val. A memory quilt of sorts.

You may remember me showing a little bit of this hexagon quilt last year. Well, after 40 years in progress Pat (with the pearl earring) has finally finished it. Well done Pat for such perseverence. There are a few Pat's in our Tuesday group and to distinguish them Pat with the pearl earring came about from a self portrait mini quilt where she depicted herself with said earring.

Congratulations to Mary (Tuesday sewing group)for winning this wonderful raffle quilt at a Quilters Guild sewing Day. It is beautifully made and I hope that clicking on a close up shows the detail.

Finally, I would like to show you this wonderful piece of work that stands outside the Art Department at the Somerset College of Art and Technology. It is by a very talented young man named Ben Plaw, aged 18. Ben is now at Bath University studying Fine Art. It is made from pieces of stainless steel and has been treated to get the rusty look. The brief was to make something to represent overcoming struggles and is partly inspired by The Angel of the North. It is meant to represent braving and battling the elements. I love it and I am thrilled at seeing it everytime I pass the College.

Happy Stitching everyone.

Love Shirley.

p.s. Now didn't the Middleton's do well with the marriage of their daughter Kate to Prince William? The whole day was just a brilliant spectacle and a happy and joyous occasion. It was a much needed escape from all the doom and gloom and destruction that assaults us. One thing our Royals do well is to put on such pageantry and they didn't disappoint. A perfect day.