Monday, November 30, 2020

Monday Make - June

 I have at last finished June from the Hand on Design "A Year of Celebrations" why has it taken so long it's only a little thing stitched on some oatmeal aida from a friend.

I have kitted up the December pattern which I hope won't take quite as long. I plan to finish the whole series in 2021, kitting up the following month once the current month is complete. Once they are all complete I will decide on how to finish them.

Friday, November 27, 2020

Freebie Friday - alphabet pins


I went to a local charity shop earlier this week and a miscellaneous bag of haberdashery caught my eye as it contained a few packets of eyelets and more importantly some alphabet beads. I couldn't believe how many packs of eyelets there were and for £3. I was very pleased especially as I had lost three of my alphabet pins and I do like a full set. I spoke to my son about shirts during the week and he was measuring his biceps with  piece of string and ruler, so the tape measure that was in the bag has been added to his birthday box which should reach him very soon. I hope it makes him smile.

To make the pins is so simple, but Elmers was not the right glue for the job. I have previously used Diamond Glaze but don't have any now so will look for a better glue. Put a dot of glue at the top of the pin a few millimetres away from the yellow head, slide the alphabet bead on and leave to dry. 

These are perfect for labeling project pieces or blocks when putting them together in rows. And so economical and easy to make.

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

WIP Wednesday - Christmas wreath


I hope you're sitting comfortably as I have a shocking revelation!! The first installment of the Christmas wreath sewalong arrived in my inbox on Friday and I finished it yesterday. Shocking!! The fabric is Picture this Plus in Bashful a very pale pink from The Homemakery. I will put some pink fabric behind the linen when making it into a cushion to ramp up the pinkness.

With this project up to date I am going to work for 30 minutes each weekday on my Chinese Zodiac and also work on the little Hands on design pattern for June.

Monday, November 23, 2020

Monday Make - Minki Kim 30 minute pencil case


Several warning about this lovely pattern. 1. Do not use directional fabric as the outside of the case is all one fabric. fortunately I had selected my fabrics to make two of the pencil cases at Jersey Modern Quilt Group on Saturday but not cut the pieces ready.

2. It took me a lot longer than 30 minutes to make them, possibly because I was constantly jumping up to rewind the video which we displayed on our new venue's Powerpoint screen which assisted with the social distancing.

Fortunately my stash has a linen section as Minki Kim suggests using linen and I was soon able to fin these two lovely fabrics screen printed by Helen Steele, matching stripes in my stripe bin and two 8" zips.

I cut all of the pieces and applied the interfacing at home with my heavier duty iron.

I even found matching ribbons. However the zipper on the red case is orientated for a left handed person but it was too late once I realised. The video shows both left and right handed zippers with no explanation so don't make the same mistake as me.

I love the fish with the wording in it. Nicholas Ball is doing a sewalong with his improv fish and I think I'd like to intersperse some printed and embroidered fish.

Video by Minki Kim is here
Fabric by Helen Steele can be purchased either at Sew Hot  or direct from Helen here.

Friday, November 20, 2020

Scrap bag sampler - advent sewalong II

 Have you chosen what fabrics to use for the advent sewalong? You can find the cutting instructions here. If you need more inspiration here are some more fbric pulls from the team:

Lisa of Modern Quilt Club (@lisasew)

Lisa has chosen fabric from the range of Blossoms by The Tattooed Quilter in similar colours to mine but it will look very different.

Carol (@therunninghare)
Carol has chosen a stunning background fabric and the patterned fabrics she has chosen from her stash are going to really pop against the dark background.

Hannah (@quirkyhannah)
Hannah has chosen a background by Elizabeth Hartman paired with Libs Elliott's Phosphor collection. Gorgeous.

Gill (@surfseasew)

Gill is making a cushion for her sewing room and is pairing a Carolyn Friedlander low volume print with her own ice dyed fabrics for the background and punchy Alison Glass fabrics to contrast with a little grey linen thrown into the mix. 

Jane (@picosailors)

Jane has chosen a beautiful array of Liberty prints for her project which will contrast beautifully with her white background.

These fabric pulls are so inspiring and I am looking forward to the projects develop over December. Follow along on Instagram on the #scrapbagsampler hashtag. Not long to go now.

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

WIP Wednesday - cross stitch WIPs

Last weekend I was feeling a little overwhelmed by my cross stitching WIPs, so I thought I would name and shame myself into action. A couple of these feature on my UFO list but not many. Since I drafted this post, I actually got my act together and finished two pieces which feels great.


1. Spellville by Barbara Ana

2. Spring Sampler by Durene Jones, I wonder where this is? It's one of my 2021 UFO challenge projects.

3. Chinese Zodiac by The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery

4. We're all mad by Fiddlesticks 

5. June by Hands on Design

Kitted but not started:

6. The light by Barbara Ana

7. Christmas wreath club by The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery

8. Jolly Claus by Stitching with the Housewives

I need a plan as then I can schedule time into my Todoist app. The Christmas wreath club is a pattern a month club so I think I should prioritise that so I don't fall behind. I would also like to finish four Prairie Schooler Santas in 2021 so I am going to work on one Santa at the weekend. During the week I will work on that month's Christmas wreath and then return to the Chinese Zodiac project. Are you still with me?

Going forward into 2021 I will work on the projects as follows:
1. UFO challenge first
2. Christmas wreath section for that month
3. Hands on Design block for that month
4. Fraktal SAL sections for that month, I will not race ahead.
5. I will stitch a Prairie Schooler Santa at the weekend.
6. If time allows I will stitch the Country Cottage Needleworks monthly cottage, I have February and June completed already.

I can work on my quilting projects at our monthly meeting and any retreats that may happen in 2021 too. They are easy to pick up and pack in my suitcase as they are already bagged up.

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Scrap bag sampler - advent sewalong

Here are the cutting instructions for the advent sewalong which starts on 1 December on Instagram. Each day a clue will be released on Instagram with a photograph of that day's finished unit(s) and the aim is to sew for about ten minutes every day in the lead up to 25 December. The theme is Valentines so that there is no pressure to quilt and finish the panel by 25 December. You can make a cushion, mini quilt or tote from the finished 15” panel. I have added borders to make an 18” cushion panel.

If you add a border to your piece, you will need half a metre of background fabric and scraps of other colours. You can go full on scrappy or not. I have used one fabric for the aqua, red and grey and scrappy for pieces N and S. The cutting took me less than 90 minutes and the sewing will take no more than ten minutes per day apart from day 10.








1 ¼  ” squares





1 ½  ” squares





1 ¾” by 3”





1 ¾” squares





1½” by 7” rectangle





2 ¼” squares





1 ½” by 5.5” rectangles





1 ½” by 6.5” rectangles















1 ¾” by 3” rectangle





1 ¾” by 3” rectangle





1 1/8” by 1 ¾” rectangle










2” squares

20 in total from 1 or 5 fabrics




1 1/8” squares





1 1/8” squares





1 ¾” squares


R same fabric as P&Q






Mix of pink and red


2 ¼” squares





13/16” by 3” rectangles










1½” by 7” rectangle





1 ½”by 3 ½” rectangle






1 ¾” by 5 ½”rectangle









Amanda (@metroquilter) loves Carolyn Friedlander fabrics and who can blame her. She stash dived for scraps and charm squares for the sewalong.

Here are her pieces all cut and ready to go with a linen background. 

Pippa (@pippaspatch) has channeled her inner sparkle for her choice of background. I have that red stars and spots fabric. I wonder if I used any of it in my project? Both Amanda and Pippa have sensibly chosen a dark grey, my original choice (not in my photograph) was too light and not enough contrast with the background.

Kim (@getahashtagkim) has chosen these gorgeous purples - not a turquoise in sight! She is making this as a gift for a friend, so has chosen a palette that her friend will like. Dots and fossil fern, you can't go wrong.

Do post your fabric choices on Instagram using #scrapbagsampler . Other people's scraps are always more interesting than one's own scraps.