Saturday, 14 November 2015

Je Suis Francais

My thoughts are with those families who have had their hearts ripped out due to the terrible and needless slaughter in Paris last night. We must stand strong and be united.

Thursday, 12 November 2015

My PIF gifts

A few months ago over on Instagram I took part in a Pay It Forward. Although I had 5 people take me up on it only 3 bothered to send me their details so only 3 gifts I've made.

And yes they are all mugrugs, although I'll send some chocolate with them too.
After trawling through their pinterests I tried to make something to their tastes, as if I was a swap partner.

First up was one who seemed to like colour and geometric patterns. So I drew up some basic squares and rectangles on graph paper.

I cut some 1" strips and sewed it together using the plan as a guide. Some of the little blocks had to be moved around to prevent matching fabrics being sewn together.

I quilted it using a cross hatch and variegated thread. I think if I do one like this again I'd use a white thread for quilting.

I've some sewing related fabric for the back of all of the mug rugs.

 The second mug rug was inspired by some applique flowered quilts and again rough drafted on graph paper.

 I fused some circles together and fused them to a background along with wavy stems and various leaf shapes.

I then sewed them down as part of the quilting. I did a slightly different design on each flower

I quilted some grass and leaf shapes at the bottom and going up the stems.

 The final gift is to someone who likes rainbow quilts

I sewed together some 1.5" strips and then cut them into three unequal pieces. I turned the thin centre one upside down and then pieced them using white strips as separators. 

Each section was quilted differently.

Cross hatch using white thread on the one side.

 Matchstick quilting using matching thread on the other.

 White matchstick quilting in the spacer strips and diamonds in diamonds ( almost) in the centre panel

You may wonder why I still use graph paper even though I got EQ7. The answer is simple. I do alot of my quilt planning/designing while I'm waiting in the car for the daughter to come out of work. Some of these designs are then transferred to EQ to tweak. Some, like these, don't need EQ.

These are all going off in the mail today to various destinations around the world.

I'll be linking up to various linky parties listed HERE

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Dog Gone Cute voting has opened

Remember Scrap, Spot, Patch and friends

Well the voting has begun over at Sew Fresh Quilts as to people's favourite Dog Gone Cute quilt. Go over to HERE to take a look at the great work quilters have done with this pattern and vote for your favourite

Monday, 9 November 2015

Menu Monday

OK it's Monday so it's time to plan my week.

Splitting my housework up into days as per last week seemed to work well, when I kept to the plan. I got it all done and still had time for myself/sewing. As a result I'm keeping to the same schedule

Sunday - shopping and baking
Monday - Living Room, Hall, Front porch
Tuesday - Bedrooms, Bathroom, Stairs and Landing
Wednesday - Kitchen, Fridge
Thursday - repeat of MOnday
Friday - repeat of Tuesday
Saturday - repeat of Wednesday

I actually did some baking yesterday

Lemon Drizzle Sponge

 Chocolate Orange Sponge with Chocolate Ganache topping

That should keep us going for the week. 


I'm being a bit more adventurous with the meal plan this week. I've been through my favourite recipes and picked a new to me as well

Sunday - Roast Beef
Monday - Tex Mex Sausage Plait and baked potato
Tuesday - Cola Chicken with wedges
Wednesday - Chorizo and Bean Stew with mashed potatoes
Thursday - Potato crumbed pork ( the new to me)
Friday - Chip shop
Saturday - Toad in the Hole


Not much on the list as it hinges on when a parcel of fabric and wadding appears.

Over the weekend I worked on my Gypsy Wife and I managed to turn this

 into this

I want to finish piecing the last section and then get the quilt togther. When the wadding arrives I'll be sandwiching and quilting it. This is my main quilt to work on this week

I also want to make a few more blocks for the Tula Sampler I'm making in Batiks. Also I want to make a start on a mug rug for Leanne for our private swap. I've ordered some fabric and need it to come for me to start.

I've also got to take the car to the garage for some routine maintenance. I loathe doing this. Hubby and a friend normally do all the work on my car for me. Unfortunately there's one job they can't do as they need a special tool which the manufacturer won't sell to a non business. As a result the car has to go to a garage and I have to pay a ridiculously high price for the priviledge. I think because I don't take the car to a garage very often that the price is such a shock. Also I know what the job entails and that's why I begrudge paying the price. Still it has to be done.

Sunday, 8 November 2015

Remembrance Sunday

Each petal that falls at the end of the video represents a British life lost in the service of our country since 1914.

Saturday, 7 November 2015


The first Friday of the new month is always a world wide sewing night with internet friends Hubby calls them my invisible friends). It's an excuse to put your pj's on, get a takeaway and spend all evening sewing. This Friday was no exception.

First up I sewed this week's blocks for the Seeing Stars BOM

First up the 12" block

And here is the 6"

This is a bit of a mystery quilt as we don't know what stars we are going to sew until they are published. The Twenty Twenty girls did post a sneak picture of the setting for the finished quilt. It's a great setting but  I have no idea what fabric I'm going to use. I may be asking for help with this one.

These blocks were quick and easy so I also had time to make the next step on the Meadow Mist mystery quilt.

This month I used these units from previous months

To make these units.

Some of which became these units.

 I also made a few HST's which became these units.

I am really excited to see how these are going to fit in around the large Courthouse Steps blocks from last month.
This is my first proper mystery quilt and I am loving it. Cheryl has already started designing next years and I will be definitely be sewing along.

My daughter then threw me off my machine as she wanted to use it for her costuming so I ended the evening hand sewing some bindings on some mug rugs to send off.

You'll see the front of then in a post sometime this week.

Right I'm off to the link up Cheryll's blog to see what the rest of my invisible friends were up to yesterday.

Thursday, 5 November 2015

I'd like to thank..........

My last Instagram swap of the year was the Golden Days of Hollywood and it's on it's way to my partner as I type.

The theme was the classic Hollywood films pre 1970. We had to make two things, one movie or actor based and one black and white ( a spin on the classic B & W films).

My partner didn't want a mini quilt as such. She asked for something that she could use as home decor as she liked to change things around regularly.

I decided to make a table runner based on one of her favourite films, Holiday Inn, which contains the song I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas.

I made it as a row by row quilt, hand embroidering the song title in the centre along with some musical notes.

The corners had appliqued trees and snow, which I quilted using a metallic silver.

The other trees were paper pieced using a selection of christmas greenery fabric. I also quilted these using metallic silver to make them glisten as per the words in the song.

The snowflakes were sewn down using metallic silver to give them a bit of sparkle

I free machine quilted the background in blue and cross hatched the border in white. It was bound using the same blue as the background.

The Black and White quilt gave me a bit of trouble. I wanted to do another table runner but make it more suitable for all year. I also didn't have as many black and white fabrics in my stash as I thought.

After playing around with some ideas I settled on dong something with stars, as on dressing room doors.

I searched and printed out my partner's favourite film stars autographs.

After making some star blocks using some sparkly fabrics I then traced the autographs on to the stars

 I then machine stitched the names in black. Some of which worked better than others I will admit.

I used a serpentine on the border of the quilt and also on the frames of the star blocks. I did FMQ on the background of the blocks. I also put a small flange in between the blocks and the border to frame the centre.

My huge issue with this was my tension decided to play up ( hence the big clean up as per this post )

 So after I had quilted the centre I rebacked the whole thing and just quilted the border through all the layers.

I couldn't stop at just these though. Another of my partner's favourite films was West Side Story.  As I was researching images of all her films on the list there were two from West Side Story that I couldn't resist. So I made a set of his and hers' mug rugs as an extra.

This swap was part of my FALQ4 list and a list of the sites I'll be linking up to can be found HERE

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

So Yesterday was Sunday?

In a vain attempt to bring order to the chaos of my life I'm trying to organize my days. I've know that alot of people use planners for their to do lists and menu planning so I thought I'd give it ago.
My grandmother's generation ( and those before her) did a version of this unconsciously. If I remember it was
Monday - wash day
Tuesday - downstairs
Wednesday - upstairs
Thursday - washday
Friday - baking day

She also had a form of mealplan as Monday was always cold meat and veg left over from the Sunday Roast. Wednesday was a roast and Thursday was a repeat of Monday. Friday was either fish and chips or a freshly baked pie.
These routines were never written down but just taken as law. You didn't want to be around her if it was raining on a Monday or Thursday believe me.

Anyway back to the present. Last week I sat down with a notebook and worked out a routine and meal plan for the week.

Sunday will be be my day for shopping and baking
Monday - Living room, hall, front porch
Tuesday - bedrooms, bathroom, stairs and landing
Wednesday - Kitchen, fridge
Thursday - repeat Monday
Friday - repeat tuesday
Saturday - repeat wednesday

As I live in Wales, the land of rain, washing day will be when the weather allows.

It's not going well.

Sunday I decided to completely rearrange the kitchen and emptied all the cupboards. This left no time for baking, which I managed to do yesterday.

Apple, sultana and cinnamon cake

Apple Crumble

Vanilla Sponge topped with Turkish Delight Icing and choc chips

I didn't get a meal plan written down until yesterday either  but here it is.

Monday - Peri Peri chicken and wedges
Tuesday - Gammon and chips
Wednesday - Cottage Pie and veg
Thursday - Chicken, Leek and Tarragon with baked potato
Friday - Fish and chips
Saturday - Chicken curry and rice
Sunday - Roast Dinner

Well that's the plan anyway, but it never goes that way in this house. I can but try though. Hopefully next week will be a bit more organised. The plan is to do a List post every Monday. Perhaps that will help keep me in check.

Linking up with  Whats for dinner Wednesday at Cath's blog

Monday, 2 November 2015

Dusting Off an old UFO

I wasn't planning on doing any sewing on the weekend but after cleaning my machine it only seemed right that I tried her out.

One of the WIP's I've listed in my FALQ4 is the Tula Pink Sampler. I don't think I'll get it finished by the end of the year but it's good to progress it.

I'd done the first 60 out of the hundred blocks. As you can see I'm using bright and pastel batiks

And here are blocks 61-66 that I made on Sunday

I'm hoping to get a few more done this week to take the tally up to 70.

I've also started a few more mug rugs ( yes I know surprising). These are Pay it Forward gifts from a month or so ago on Instagram. I want them away for the end of the week.