Friday, July 31, 2015

Farm Girl Fridays - week 14 - Introducing Penny Pig

Week 14 already. and I'm keeping up. Lori Holt has been doing a number of Farm Girl Vintage retreats with extra block patterns for participants. One such pattern is Penny Pig, which was released yesterday along with a delicious apple. Here is Penny Pig minus her embroidered details. we are about to go out for my early birthday lunch so I will embroider them after lunch. we are celebrating today as Matthew is working a double shift (lunch and dinner) tomorrow.

Then the blocks from the book are Old Glory
And Old Red Barn. I even found the quarter square triangle block in my scrap basket and it was the perfect size. The grey fabric is Little Apples by Aneela Hoey.
And here are the two 12" blocks together. My design wall is now overflowing, so I'm considering starting to sew a few blocks together when I tackle next week's blocks.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Pen Pals - spring day at the carrot farm
And this is the last of my finished cross stitches for the moment. There are still three in the series to finish. Two are over half done and one is in kit form to grab and go. I much prefer the yellow border in this stitchery to the white border.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Pen Pals - Valentine's Day

Looking back I haven't shared this completed cross stitch. This is also worked on the dotty linen. It was this pattern that persuaded me to change all of the other patterns to a coloured border so as to better stand out on the linen.

This is pattern 203, called Valentine's Day. I still don't know how I'm going to display these completed stitcheries.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Pen Pals - Ice Cream, You Scream!
I have just finished this small cross stitch by The Frosted Pumpkin Sitchery, just as they  release the next in the series. I took three of these in kit form to Birmingham to work on and I managed to move all of them on and I now have four out of seven complete. Once I'm up to date with them, I can move onto the many other cross stitches I have in progress.

As I purchase each pattern, I print out the coloured chart and the colour key. I then laminate them back to back to work from. Then I get a zip lock bag and add the threads from my stash and the dotty aida. Then I know what threads I need to buy or substitute. I now need to make up my kit for pattern 208 and find the box of threads that I know is somewhere in my stash.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Goody Goody Binding Bag Sew Along with Lella Boutique

Vanessa of has recently designed a Binding Bag in her new fabric range. Fat Quarter Shop has organised a Sewalong for this free pattern available from Vanessa's blog.

I cut out most of the pieces for this quick project on Tuesday before catching the boat to St Malo with four friends. we had a lovely time, the boat was on time, the sea was very calm and we had a lovely lunch in Saint Servan. Farmers were protesting so the ferry company warned us to allow plenty of time to return to the ferry terminal. This only affected us after lunch when we took a bus to the supermarket as we were dropped off further away than we expected. When we left the shopping centre, there were tractors at each exit but the taxi arrived in ten minutes and avoided any protests on the back streets back to the port.

I started sewing the bag this morning after taking daughter, Lizzie to the port. On the left hand side you have a pouch for your binding clips. On the right hand edge, you turn in a quarter inch seam and I pressed the two seam allowances into the middle of the two layers, so the pouch is seam free inside. I bought most of the fabrics for this at the Cotton Patch last week.
In the centre of the pouch you have a ribbon for your threads. In the pattern this is made from fabric, but I used some ribbon. It is also meant to be attached at the bottom with Velcro and as I had no Velcro to hand I added a Prym press stud. The strawberry pocket for scissors has been replaced by a square pocket.

On the right hand side is a pocket for treats. I added a lace trim to the pocket from the haberdashery stash given to me by a friend's Mum.
And here's the finished interior ready for use by it's lucky recipient. The fabric range is mostly Indelible by art Gallery Fabrics.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Farm Girl Fridays - week 13 - Mama Hen and Milking Day

 Apart from an appalling photo, I'm please with this block. It's a nicely designed block but a bit fiddly at 6" square. Again all scraps from my scrap bags.

I'm not sure where this orange feather fabric came from, but it looks great on this Mama Hen block. And it's all going in the right direction without need for the ripper.

I think next week I'll mix the blocks up a bit instead of just adding the new blocks to the bottom. it's coming together nicely.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Flower swirls

Nick was kind enough to print out the directory of all the new Prostitcher patterns that came with the recent upgrade. Carole requested a quick easy pattern so I chose Flower Swirls 4. I enlarged the design to fit the space without having to crop it. That was almost a mistake as it just fitted in the throat space which I only realised after I'd started the first row. A bit of jiggery pokery and all was well.
The quilt was delivered early yesterday morning after an e-mail from the client asking if I could fit it into my schedule. A quick phone call from Carole and she was here by 8.30 am. She knows I'm an early riser. It was a bit of a shock for Matthew to see a stranger in the house so early and a bit of a shock to me that he'd gone to the gym so early too.

I decided to make the Goody Goody Binding Bag first yesterday before loading this quilt. It was finished the same evening and looks good. I hope the customer is happy with it as it's for an ill friend and she wants to get it in the post as soon as possible.

A lovely quilt. I'll share the Goody Goody Binding Bag with you on Saturday.

Monday, July 20, 2015


Isn't this a cute quilt, made by my friend Val. Val tells me that the pattern is my Bunny Hill designs and the fabric is Winter Wonderland. It is a lovely quilt. The background in the centre is an off white overprinted with cream outlined dots which I particularly love.

I quilted it on my HQ Avante using a pantograph called Elegant Stars to pick out the stars from the applique. I used King Tut thread in Canvas. I used several new techniques that I picked up last week - cropping closed and drag and drop.

Matthew went to the gym at 7 am so I was able to take a photo nice and early before we headed to the supermarket to buy him some cereal.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Sunday stash - Indelible

Last week I was away learning more about the Art N Stitch and Prostitcher software for my Handiquilter Avante at the Cotton Patch in Birmingham with instructor, Lynda Jackson. I picked up lots of information, but it also proved that I know more than I give myself credit for. However I still have loads to learn and put into practise. Over the coming months, I will be working through the twenty sets of tutorials on the Art N Stitch website to improve my skills and add to my knowledge. When the manual for the updated Prostitcher software is released, I'll also work through that. I did learn that I can load the Prostitcher software onto a laptop and run it in simulator mode which is something for this week's to do list.
My flight was delayed for three hours, so I only had thirty minutes available for shopping before meeting Marjorie to share a taxi to Hall Green where we were staying and a short walk from The Cotton Patch Studio. However I did manage to pop into House of Fraser and purchase a few zips. On Thursday evening, with the courses finished and the teacher was busy finalising some design work, I headed off on the bus to Touchwood shopping centre and bought a few more zips at John Lewis and had dinner at Wagamama.

The reason for buying so many zips is that I plan to make at least one Noodlehead Super Tote. I also picked up some Art Gallery fabrics from their Indelible range as well as a linen look cotton as well as some Soft and Stable for the Super Tote. The Soft & Stable was expensive at over £20 a metre, so I hope it works well. It also took up a lot of room in my carry on case. I would have been better to have the Cotton Patch post my purchases home as the postage charge was £5.50 and the fee for processing the VAT form is £5, but at least I could cut into the fabric straight away.
Linking to:

Molli Sparkles

Friday, July 17, 2015

Farm Girl Friday - week 12 - Kettle's On and Kitchen Window

Over half way through the sew along, and I need to do more 6" blocks or this is going to be a BIG quilt. First we have Kettle's On. The pink handle is by Lori Holt and the two aqua fabrics are from I Want Her Stash. Whilst rifling through my stash to find these fabrics I found some label fabric which might be interesting to fussy cut for a few blocks.
This was a super easy 6" block and I love the tortoises in the border fabric. I hope I don't lose too many when I put the blocks together. this is from Aneela Hoey's range - Little Apples.

And here they are all together again. I might make a couple more 6" can blocks using the label fabric.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Work in Progress Wednesday - Pinata Party

Have you missed me? I'm in Birmingham this week learning about the Prostitcher and Art n Stitch software for my Handiquilter machine. This is one of two courses I've booked for this summer. I was looking at booking to go to the Festival of Quilts, but just the return leg of the flight was over £200 and there were no classes that I was desperate to take. Hotels are also over £100 a night and in Birmingham I'm paying just £35 per night, so I made the decision not to go. The only thing I'll miss is not meeting up with stitchy friends.
On Saturday I decided to spent most of the day doing cross stitch. I had lots of other things I could have been doing like loading a customer quilt, tidying my craft room, but no I decided to work on this cross stitch that I planned to take to Birmingham with me. The pattern is by Frosted Pumpkin and is called PiƱata Party from their Pen Pals series. There are seven or eight so far, with only six being available online. I believe two were special editions for shows but will be available in the future.

And it's finished. I decided to use colours from my stash ad the yellow would have been better in a deeper shade. I substituted the silver too for a grey as I can't work with metallic embroidery threads. I love the turquoise border and will use a coloured border on future items from the series. I have almost finished the Valentine themed Pen Pal and I'm not liking the white border. That's probably why I haven't finished it. However the Valentine Pen Pal is being taken on my trip along with the Ice Cream, You Scream Pen Pal which I also worked on over the weekend.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Sunday Stash - I want her stash May and June 2015

Look what arrived on Friday. No knitting needles to start making some socks, but my May and June bundles from Westwood Acres' I Want Her Stash Club arrived.

The fabrics in this bundle are very typical of Kristyne of Pretty by Hand whose blog I have followed for several years. My only disappointment is that there are three FQs of Essex Dyed linen. Lovely fabric but I wouldn't use it in a quilt as it's a different weight to typical quilting fabric and I'd rather have a yard of one colour for bags and similar items. I need to find the yardage I have in grey in my stash for the typewriter bag.
And June's bundle is by Alison Glass and includes a number of her own beautiful fabrics. As I already have a number of Alison's fabrics, this bundle is a fabulous addition. And I don't have any of them already apart from the text print. I don't think the text print is meant to be printed wonky, but I'm finding the slope on some of the print disconcerting.  

Linking to:
Molli Sparkles

Friday, July 10, 2015

Farm Girl Friday - week 11 - Haystack and Grandma's Quilt

Firstly we have haystack which is cut from my scrap bags which are sorted by colour. All apart from the small red check which sits in my Farm Girl Vintage project bag. A six inch block which was a quick make.
The small red check makes an appearance in the corners of this block too. I love the chicken wire / hexagon low volume fabric.
And all of the blocks together so far. A few more 6" blocks would definitely be a good idea.

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Work in Progress Wednesday - The power of Instagram

As planned I beavered away on my Paper Piecing block yesterday. I soon realised that I didn't have enough of the Bonnie & Camille Vintage Modern grey floral fabric for the top border. I shared my dilemma on Instagram. I soon had an offer of fabric from Wendy in the US and Pippa in France said she'd have a look. Late last night, Pippa posted that she thought she might have included the strip in the Fat Quarterly retreat scrap strip swap. My heart leapt, yes I had seen a strip of bonnie & Camille in the swap. Should I get up and have a search?

So at 7 o'clock this morning, I pulled out my scrap strip box which was where I expected, nothing leapt out at me, but I rummaged some more and there it was a 2.5" strip -18" long - so it hadn't been cut into. With lizzie away in London, I sewed that strip on straight away. relief, the block is done.

Now what to use the block for? A mini quilt? It's too big for a lap top bag. Perhaps the side of a big tote? Any suggestions? Thanks Pippa. Another UFO gets closer to being finished.

Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Q3 2015 -

Some new projects and some left over from last quarter:

CQ hexagons - a hand sewn project for Wednesday mornings, I worked on it a little in Q2 but didn't make any significant progress.

Strip quilt for Siblings Together - Several friends have made me blocks for this and I'm going to try to finish some more blocks to get this out of my WIP pile even though the group I wrote up the instructions for hasn't made my blocks and won't do until October. I should be able to make two quilts for the charity.

Typewriter block  Once I've made the block it will either become a cushion, tote bag or laptop bag.
I need to make a pennant for our WI using our logo. I made this block earlier in the year for a group quilt.

Moda Building blocks  - just needs to be quilted but apparently I don't have a photo of the quilt top.

Farm Girl Vintage - should be finished by the end of September and I have over half of the blocks completed.

TB olive and mustard - another old UFO which only needs a bit of quilting on my Bernina.

And last but by no means least I need to make three gifts for the secret sewer swap for the Simply Solids retreat, one of which may feature the typewrite block above.

2015 FAL at On the Windy Side