Sunday, March 31, 2013

Blue & Purple & Grey Nine Patches

Made some more nine patches today -these with purple squares alongside the grey. For once, I decided to stitch the blocks together as I went rather than waiting until they are all done. There will be 9 rows, so there are 6 more to go, including...

lots of nine patch blocks left to make (and yes, first thing I do tomorrow will be to cut more grey squares). You can also see a little pieced part of one of my leaders-and-enders blocks (I'm still doing the little scrappy stars - I may do them until the end of time, at the rate I get through them). 

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Back from the longarmer

This one came back from the longarmer the other week, and I have attached the binding, though I am still in the process of stitching it down. One more evening perhaps...

Friday, March 29, 2013

Grey and Blue 9 patches

Today I was looking for something easy to do, as my mother is here and she often comes up and chats to me while I sew. This is fine, but if it's something which requires carefully measuring or lots of counting that doesn't work well. As this is the beginning of her visit, I don't want to chase her away, I want to chat.  So, I decided that I couldn't go too far wrong with 2.5" squares. I found a piece of neutralish fabric (grey) and tackled my box of small blue scraps.  I'm going to alternate these with some purple ones, which have 5 grey and 4 purple,  so they chain. But that's a task for later. Actually, I'm not sure how many of these I made already, so I should count them and see, but I have a lot more scraps, so I can certainly keep going.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

More tidying...

When I'm showing photos of my tidying up, I'm never sure whether to start with the end result (a nice tidy drawer, like the one above and a windowsill with a big empty space like the one below)

or whether to start with the "before" pictures - here's the drawer when I started

and here are the three plastic containers which were in that space in the windowsill, and which have since been emptied (one was empty already) and put away in the cupboard in the loft which has storage boxes in it. 

Several things were got rid of -  this tea box had all the bits from the sides of pieces of hand-dyed fabrics I've made  - I had been saving them because I might do something with them someday. We know how that goes!  I emptied out these bits and instead used the box for the ultra-fine glitter which was in the top of the three storage boxes above.

Not sure what this stuff was doing in that drawer in the first place - a little bag of memorabilia. I've moved it to a more appropriate place (that's my tassle from my college graduation cap - it used to be black).

These three boxes are now empty - I've put them for the time being in a boxes of storage pots which I have set aside - they may not stay there forever in the grand scheme of things, but at least there will be some small containers if I need one during the rest of my clear out.

Obviously the drawer in the top photo is nearly empty and could hold a lot more, but as the storage unit that those drawers are in will be something which goes in my grand reorganisation (it will probably be given to Alex for his stuff), the less that's in the drawers which needs to be stored elsewhere, the better.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Cross stitch update

Not a lot of progress this week, but then I've only worked on it once, I think, or maybe twice - one night I finished off the other piece, one night I went out, a couple nights I've been stitching down binding...  This week, I was going to start a new piece, but before I could do so, I received part six of my birds in the post, so that will be next. It's a fairly small section, though, so I don't imagine it will take the entire week to stitch - although, there is more binding to do, so who knows what will happen!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Giveaway winners!

Many thanks to the six people who were interested in my big pile of shiny stuff.  It's quite a big pile of shiny stuff, and I think you are all in the UK, so what I'm going to do is send some to everyone. I might also throw in some bits of ribbon and lace I am getting rid of (I haven't technically sorted out that drawer yet - it's next on the list, though) as well - between waiting for that and sorting the big pile into smaller piles, I won't be mailing stuff until some time in the Easter holidays.

So I will be in touch shortly to ask for addresses - I'm sure I have some of them.  Congratulations to Anna, Marei, Lyndsey, Marion, Wendy and Carolyn. Thanks for reading :)  And I'm sure you'll have fun.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Garden finished...

As suspected, I finished this cross-stitch piece in just a few sessions this week - there was only a little to go.  I've now moved back to the other piece (Winter Wonderland) since it was the turn for that one in the rotation, anyway. Of course, I have binding to be sewn down at the moment, too, so I don't know if a lot of it will get done or not, but that's ok. It will get worked on when it gets worked on...

Sunday, March 24, 2013


The other day, I saw a post on Jane's blog about a Linus quilt made with braids.. Excellent idea, thought I.   Hers were scrappy, but actually, as I have relatively few scrap strips at the moment, I thought I'd tackle my overabundance of smaller pieces of blue fabric (I have twice as much blue as anything else except possible neutrals). 

So in addition to putting the binding on the little House quilt and on a quilt which has come back from the longarmers recently (more on that later), today I made some braids - I actually started last weekend, but didn't get very far. 

I got a bit farther today.   Now I just have to figure out what fabric I'll put between them to turn this into a quilt top!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Funky house finish (almost)

Resisting temptation to just piece and piece today (always the task for me - to do what I need to do and not simply find something interesting to piece) I worked on finishing the quilting on this piece. I did lots, including several colour changes to get all the roofs, skies and houses done (I'm not quilting the doors and windows). I even tackled the sky..

using a sort of cloudy pattern,

and the grass, with leaves.  Brought it downstairs to photograph, and realised...

I missed this one green house!  Oh well, one little bit of green quilting tomorrow before I work on putting binding on this piece and a quilt which is back from the longarmer...  Maybe even some time for piecing tomorrow!

Friday, March 22, 2013

New cross stitch (to sew later)

Saw this during my recent blog hopping (or rather, saw it stitched up on someone's blog) and thought it was perfect for my Christmas decorations - Christmas with a Crow!  So I tracked it down through etsy and here it is!  Of course, I won't stitch it until December, despite the fact that we have snow predicted for this weekend, but I think it will be a lovely addition to my seasonal cross-stitch decorations. I thought I had a post somewhere on the blog showing all the Christmas cross-stitch patterns I have sewn and have up in the house, but I'm struggling to find it.  Oh well, perhaps that's an idea for a post for next Christmas!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Pink and purple Squares... finished

All done and ready to go to its new home tomorrow. If I remember to take it with me!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Cross stitch update

As you can probably see, this piece is nearly done - there's just the rest of the bottom border to do and a few tiny bits and pieces like the eye of the bunny and some light pink on one of the flowers. Consequently, I think I will keep stitching it until I finish it (probably one evening's work) and then switch back to Winter Wonderland. Seems silly not to finish! 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Another drawer tidy

This weekend I tackled another drawer - this one, I kept most of the things in it, though I did tidy it quite a bit. There's lots more room in this drawer (though I probably won't keep this storage unit for sewing stuff, so that's irrelevant). 

Here's what it looked like before I tidied it up. 

And here are the things I decided I don't need any more (not the ruler, that just happened to be on the table!).  This time, no giveaway, as I am going to send the paper punches to a friend who does lots of paper crafting and who has a birthday coming up soon - and who is as keen as I am on recycling, reusing and passing things on.  The string is going to school.   Only another hundred drawers, boxes, shelves, and so on to go (well, maybe not quite that many, but many will take a lot longer to sort through!)

Monday, March 18, 2013

Block Lotto Steps

Among the things finished this weekend, four blocks for the March Block Lotto...

and 20 more to make into a Block Lotto inspired top. Not necessarily in this layout, mind you. 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Binding on...

I showed yesterday the little quilt I quilted for a work colleague; today, I made and attached binding to it. Hopefully in the next day or two, I will sew the binding down, and then I can give it to her before she actually HAS the baby.  Always a bit better that way...

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Pink and Purple Baby Quilt

Busy weekend this weekend, so I decided to skip swimming and do a bit of quilting instead - this top was already made, of course, and I've quilted it very simply with a meander in variegated pink threads. It's for a work colleague who is having a little girl very shortly.  She's got three boys already, so I reckon this will help compensate for a lack of pink in her house!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Red & White Split 4 patches

I've shown this quilt before in various stages, but not in the finished finished (i.e. even the binding is sewn down) stage before, as that was only finished tonight. 

The blocks came from winning the block lotto in March 2011, and I made it up into a top fairly quickly - in about May of that year.  But it took longer to have it quilted as it was large and I wanted to have it longarmed. 

Which I did.  Look at these great feathers - I think you can see them if you enlarge the photo.

I bound it using scrappy reds, as all the reds in the top are scrappy anyway.

This quilt will be a wedding present for Olivia's flute teacher. I was considering saving it for another engaged friend, but they haven't yet set a date, so there will be something else for them when the time comes. Emma, the flute teacher, is getting married over the Easter holidays, so it works well for her...

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Clearing out, part 1 (with giveaway)

As I mentioned before, I will eventually have to downsize my sewing room - or at least, store all the stuff I want to keep elsewhere. This move is a long way off, but it doesn't hurt to start going through drawers and getting rid of things now - I figure if I do one or two small storage sections a week, I might actually be done by the time we move stuff around a year or two from now.  Maybe!

So I started with two drawers full of misc, non-quilting fabrics. Mostly sheers and other funky textures.  These are fabrics I use in small bits when making ATCs and occasionally the small art quilt.  Some of them were bought by me, some were given, but most of them are quite big pieces, especially the sheers.  Frankly, I will not use a metre of any sheer fabric, probably in my lifetime, and certainly not in the next 10-20 years. So a lot of the bigger pieces, I cut down, put part in the save pile and part in the giveaway pile. I didn't get rid of ALL of anything, just parts of the larger pieces...

A few really oddly shaped bits went in the bin - including the offcuts of a scarf which I bought in a charity shop for next to nothing and used in an art quilt for round 4 of Another Little Quilt Swap. 

A few sheer bags will go in a pile of stuff to go to a friend who sells at markets and can probably use them for something. 

And this scarf will go in my closet with my scarves, to be worn.  I don't remember this at all - wonder how it got in my stash?

All this clearing out left me with one empty drawer, 

one tidy drawer full of interestingly texture fabric in amounts that will still keep me going until the end of time, but which are reasonable rather than stupid, 

and one pile of mostly sheer and slippy, shiny fabrics which I am offering to a good home. Although a lot of these are sheer and not heavy, I am going to limit this drawing to those in the UK or in the US (because my mother is visiting in a few weeks' time and can take it back with her to post there) unless of course you'd be happy to reimburse postage by paypal if you win, in which case, you can be from anywhere.   If you are interested in having this stack of miscellaneous goodies, leave a comment by the end of March, and I'll do a drawing at that point...