Tuesday, December 31, 2013

9 Stripy Blocks

...and here are all the lotto blocks which I made, together in one photo. I have actually had a chance to make some blocks for the January lotto, but of course I can't post those until at least tomorrow...

Monday, December 30, 2013

Pick a theme Swap

Some ATCs for a pick-a-theme swap - instead of a common theme, you request your theme when you sign up, and those in your group (usually 5 people in total) make a card to your requested theme. These cards were scanned, and are fairly 3D, so came out quite blurry, but I promise they are in focus in real life...  The top one is for a theme "must include colourful postage stamp in design" - the stamp is from South Africa...

This one was "design to include weeping willow tree and antique key" - I decided to stitch the tree - and the sun, too...

The theme here was "literary dragons" - I chose to use the dragon from Eragon (I know that's not the name of the dragon, but it's the name of the book...) by Christopher Paolini.  The background is made of strips of a variety of papers, but doesn't show well in the scan.

And finally, this theme was "monochromatic (not abstract) including words or poetry" - I've done a faerie in a garden with flowers and leaves with a tiny bit of found poetry.

And an extra card for the hostess - she doesn't choose a theme (and the card is not required, but many of us include one as a thank you for the effort involved in hosting) - I know she likes oriental things, so I've made a Chinese feel card. Just realised the scan is probably upside down.  Oh well.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Winter Wonderland

Finished!  And yes, I am still working a bit on the angels and do still plan to finish the green dress before I put it away until next season. I really can't do much of that piece at one time - it hurts my head. Too much counting!  I just can't really cope with that sort of intense cross-stitch any more. Perhaps I should double check all my patterns and get rid of any more which are that complicated and dense, as it's not likely I'll ever stitch them now...

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Three last lotto blocks

I haven't been making lots of blocks for the block lotto lately - sometimes because I don't have time, sometimes because I don't want to spend the money to send blocks to three different winners and sometimes because they aren't really my style of blocks. This block in December was really my kind of thing - quick, easy, useful for using up scraps, so I wanted to make lots of them. I made 9 for the lotto, with the WOW (white on white) fabric, and loads more for scrapbusting/charity quilts with a neutral fabric from my stash. Sometime, I'll photograph all 9 together for the lotto blog.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Stack of fabric, incoming

When my mother and I cleared out her fabric stash this summer, there was a lot of fabric which she no longer wanted and which would, in the fullness of time, come live with me. I didn't have space in my suitcase for much of it, so she's bringing it over a little at a time when she visits - here's this visit's installment (plus a piece left from backing a quilt) - I just have to measure the pieces and make sure they are folded to fit on my shelf... 

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Inspired by the block lotto...again

Today I needed something to sew where I didn't have to think a great deal, and which would attack the scraps which are once again building up in my strip bag and my scrap basket, so I decided to go with the idea of the December block in the block lotto (with strips added down the sides to make it a square). There are more to come, but these were the finished ones - others are still in process. This will probably be the first quilt top for donation made in 2014 - though I do still have a stack of 2013 tops in the house...

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Cross-stitch update

Not one, or even two, but three items of cross-stitchy goodness to report this week. I finished this little one, Kringle's Crow (photo's a bit washed out, so the off white stitching doesn't show well, but it's there) a while ago. I knew it wouldn't take long.


I did some work on the green dress on the angels - you can see it's coming along slowly but surely. I'm not sure if I'll finish the dress this year, but that's my general goal - to make good progress on the green dress or even finish it. That will be plenty of stitching on this difficult, intricate piece, especially for my tired brain!

And once the crow was finished, I needed something else to use as a relief from the angels, so I pulled this one out, which is also much easier to stitch - I'm sure I'll finish this one this year, as it's only the house in the box to finish and the rest of the border and lettering.  Who knows, I might even need something else wintery to work on before I go back to the pink birds or the little sheep or...

Advent Calendar, Christmas Day: Baby Jesus in a Manger

Lots of advent calendars only have 24 spaces or doors, which makes sense, as it's counting down to Christmas Day itself, but the design of this one is 5x5, so there's a space for Christmas Day itself. Despite the lack of organised religion in this house, we do always use this one on Christmas Day...

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Second Scrappy Block

This one, same colour scheme, I think works slightly better than the one from the other day. When they are all together, I think they'll be alright, so I'm going to keep going with this colour plan. It's only a scrappy quilt, after all...

Advent Calendar, Day 24: Stockings by the Fireplace

Monday, December 23, 2013

Advent Calendar, Day 23: Christmas Cracker

This is one of a couple of designs I've added on my own - the pattern comes from a Canadian company, so there are certain elements of Christmas that are more North American and less European...

Sunday, December 22, 2013

A few more stripy lotto blocks

Advent Calendar, Day 22: Ornament

Today's choice, an ornament, inspired partly by process of elimination (not many choices left and a few are reserved for their traditional spots - the Christmas Eve one and the Christmas Day one) and partly by the fact that we plan to spend the day looking at Christmas decorations.

Look how full it is!  Only a few days to go...

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Actual sewing

Yep, really. Amazing, I know.  This is just a scrappy block,  as I am toying with the idea of doing another block of the month project (like the Oh My Stars Christmas quilt). I think this is too scrappy, though, so I might try again - I was trying to only use pieces from my scrap boxes (except the larger sizes - my boxes only go up to 5" squares) but I think they will probably prove to be too busy, even for a scrappy quilt. I might make another block from the project in a similar style and see how it works out.

Advent Calendar, Day 21: Angel

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Advent Calendar, Day 19: Christmas Lights

It's really filling up now - only a few more to go!  These lights are one of a couple of patterns which I added myself a year or two after I originally made the calendar. I also made a Christmas Cracker; can't remember off the top of my head if there were any more or not.  There were also a few included in the original pattern which I didn't make - a different Santa, I think, and at least one other, though I can't remember now what it was!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Cross Stitch Update

A little progress on the angels this week - not a lot, partly because I didn't stitch much (various things I have been out of the house for) and partly because it's quite hard work - lots of counting - even more than normal. 

To counteract the difficult counting, I'm working on this piece as well, which is much simpler to count. It's only little, and most of it is done now, just some branches and flowers to go. It makes a nice change from the angels when my brain can't handle the angels...

Advent Calendar, Day 18: Snowman

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Advent Calendar, Day 15: Gingerbread Man

We always save this one for the day when we do the Christmas baking, whether or not we actually make gingerbread...

Only 10 days to go!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Block lotto stripes

Actually had about half an hour to sew today, amidst many other things, so I made a few blocks for the December block lotto - a nice simple block this month, which is what I needed.  I might make some more, either for the lotto, myself, or both. There's still almost half of December left, and I actually have a couple of weeks off, so you never know!

Advent Calendar, Day 14: Present

Guess what I did today!

Friday, December 13, 2013

Round Robins

All three of these sets of round robins are ones where I was the last person to add something. I added a strip of black lace and a word to each of these red-background flowers; 

I added a bird picture and a phrase to these cards with flowers; 

I added some stars to these cards with butterflies and toadstools (took me ages to work out what I wanted to do to these - in the end, I decided to keep the colours and not worry about not having either suitable butterflies or toadstools).