Thursday 29 November 2012

Addicted to Text

Happy post came the other day - an awesome stack of 5" charms from the Addicted to Text - UK Charm Swap.  Thank you to the lovely swap mama Charlotte [Lawson and Lotti] for sending out our wee parcels!!  And a HUGE thank you to everyone who participated because we now have some rockin' charms!! 

First, I wonder what the chances were for these two charms to be cut the way they were and then to be sent to one person?  The sewing gods were favouring me that day - how lucky am I!!???

Ok - back to the main event!  I now have 28 prints (2 of each) = 56 awesome charms which are mostly 'low volume' so maybe I have a low volume project on the horizon?  I have been staring at them and drooling!  This picture is rubbish but I hope you can imagine how wonderful these are?

I will leave you with one question - what should I do with the two yellow newspaper charms shown at the top!!??  Answers on a postcard please! 

Wednesday 28 November 2012

WiP - paper piecing - me?

This past week has seen me sewing all sorts of paper pieced things (four Christmas ornaments, a candy cane gift bag).  Now, those of you who know me (or saw me at retreat) know that I cried when I tried to make the paper pieced pillow at retreat (which is still a UFO actually) because I just couldn't 'get it'. 

But, I'm stubborn so have persevered and have kept trying paper piecing and you know what?  I like it.  I like it a lot!!  And though there are loads of patterns out there far beyond my current skill level, I'm happy to stick to the fun ones for now :) 

And this leads me to tell you that Kristy from Quiet Play is SUCH a clever pattern writerererer person!!  I was lucky enough to be a pattern tester for her this week and I made her Seam Ripper pattern.  See how the orange piece is the piece that will be 'ripped' out! hahahaha

This Seam Ripper block is now a WiP - what should it become?  It is 10 inches square so I could put a border on it and make it into a mini... or I could get more of these 'sewing themed' blocks and make a wall hanging.  That would be awesome!

My WiP list is still quite huge.  Here are just the quilts on my "to-finish" list: 
  • Mod Sampler quilt
  • Wonky Log Cabin quilt (two bees)
  • Arrow quilt (bee)
  • Wonky Oakshott/Kaffe Star quilt [two Flickr members still have my fabric and don't seem to be active anymore - any advice what to do to get my fabric back??]
  • Amy Butler Happy Hour quilt
  • Wonky Houses and Tree quilt/wall hanging?
  • Wonky Scrappy Star quilt
  • Great Granny quilt lots of smaller projects still to complete.  On a positive note, I have completed 9 out of 25 '100 Day Hustle' projects and 3 of 9 '4th Quarter' projects.  Slow and steady they say :) 

And yay - I am ready for the London Modern Quilt Guild Christmas decoration/ornament exchange this weekend.  I hope my secret partner likes what I've made [one of these trees may or may not be what I give!!!].

Yes - more paper piecing!!!  I love these trees!  I made a 4th one but sent it on its way to another ornament exchange.  Exciting stuff!!  They are each only 3.5" tall so they are nice and light for the tree branches.

I still have to finish my poor pompom snowman - he is still just three balls of cotton yarn.  I finally bought some orange felt so there is no excuse to get him done!!

Ok - gotta get back to sewing!!  Linking to WiP Wednesday.

Tuesday 27 November 2012

Candy Cane gift bag

At the beginning of the month I was part of a blog hop called SEW SEASONAL.  I made a set of bauble hot pads with Ornament #8 for my day on the hop.  The patterns - bauble ornaments and paper pieced patterns - were free during the hop [now available for sale on Craftsy] and I really wanted to make the candy cane into something.  Being a practical soul, I decided to make it into a gift bag, an item I have listed on my 100 Day Hustle list!  Woohoo - two birds/one stone scenario!

The candy cane pattern is one by Quiet Play and the bag pattern is by A Quilting life.  I've made this bag before and LOVE it so I am pleased to make this festive version.  I like the crisp back against the red and white peppermint candy cane - all Kona fabrics.

I donated this gift bag bag (full of chocolate too) to a charity raffle at my workplace.  I hope whoever won it last night was pleased with it!  I love re-usable gift bags!  You will notice that my candy cane didn't quite match up at the top section but hey that's ok - it shows that it was handmade!!

Check out the other items being made from the Sew Seasonal blog hop Flickr group and if you have made something from the patterns - be sure to link it up [there are prizes!!].

Sew Seasonal Blog Hop

Linking to Fabric Tuesday.  Linked to the Sew Seasonal Blog Hop linky party.

Sunday 25 November 2012

2012 Christmas Quilt Show

I am entering a quilt into the 2012 Christmas Quilt Show!!  I dug deep to get the courage to do so and you can too!!  Find the details here.

My quilt is 'Vintage Holiday' that I completed just over a month ago.  I adore this quilt!  I love the fabrics I used and I love how easy the pattern came together [pattern by Camille Roskelley].  I used snowflake fabric by Deb Strain and some plaids I had been collecting for quite some time!  A really cozy quilt!

I live in a little English cottage and it suits the space perfectly!  I plan to hang it on the one plain (and big enough) wall that we have in the whole cottage which is in the living room.  This should make the whole place look really festive, especially when I put the 'Charlie Brown' Christmas tree up!!  One of my favourite parts about this quilt is that I did some free motion quilting (very brave of me) and I love how it looks on the scrappy back of the quilt!

So that is my entry!  I have only ever made one Christmas quilt and I love it!  Do pop over to Quilting Tutorials and check out all the other entries too!

2012 Christmas Quilt Show

Come back for a SECOND giveaway!!

Yay!!  I'll be having ANOTHER giveaway - this time with the Quilting Gallery.  Put the 10th of December in your diary and I'll see you then!!  Register if you want to participate too!

Blog Hop Party

Saturday 24 November 2012

Foxy wall hanging

Friday I received happy post!!!  This happy post had come all the way from Australia for the Scrappy Swap on Flickr, and was bursting at the cardboard seams so I immediately opened it up and I found this little fella:

Isn't he gorgeous!  This wall hanging is a piece of art!  The fox has felt patches on his neck and tail so it is really nice and tactile!  I adore it!  Look at the fabric in the tree - totally perfect!  The quilting is tremendous and I am in awe how Happy Go Lizzie managed to do the stitching so perfectly around the fox and birds.  Those birds have the best legs! 

I was well 'stalked' because I had this type of bird and tree in my inspiration mosaic!!  Gina even sent BUTTONS and most of you already know that yes, I do like a button or two!!!   She sent a local item too -some chocolate biscuit things called TimTam's.  I accidentally ate two of these before I got home to take a photo of everything!!  They are pretty yummy!

And because it was a scrap swap, she sent me this pile of scrappy goodness with a special pile of DS fabrics too - so awesome!!  I mean - Denise!?  Wow I am a lucky girl!  I will be using every single one of the scraps she sent (and she sent more than a FQ - shhh - don't tell swap mama)!

What a great way to end the week!!  I am one happy camper and have now ironed my foxy wall hanging and am looking for a stick to put in it to hang it asap.  Thank you Happy Go Lizzie - you sent me the most wonderful parcel!  You truly spoiled me x

Thursday 22 November 2012

Come back for GIVEAWAY DAY!!

Yay - another giveaway day is coming up!!  Be sure to pop back here and enter my giveaway! 

This bi-annual giveaway day is on again!  Sew Mama Sew is once again hosting this fantastic opportunity for us all to enter giveaways to win yummy schtuff!  I participated in the spring and had so much fun visiting the other blogs participating in the giveaway day.  
See you on the 3rd of December folks!

Wednesday 21 November 2012

WiP / Christmas in progress

Today snuck up on me and now it is nearly over!  Tomorrow is Thursday - WHERE has the week gone?  We are all saying that though aren't we!  Just over a month now to Christmas!!!  Thank goodness the weekend is nearly here as I have plans to go to two local Christmas craft fairs/fetes.  I like to support the small fairs - you know you can always find crazy tombolas and wild selections of bric-a-brac on offer, which always make me smile!

My Christmas sewing is coming along.  I am an hour or so away from completing these three hanging tea towels and have picked fabric for a fourth:

Once I have added the tea towel parts, I will make button holes and choose yummy buttons.  Two of the four are on their way as little pressies for [secret name] and [secret name] and one of them is for a custom order.  This is what they look like once completed (this one was made in July):

Once these are completed I can cross them off my 100 Day Hustle list. Yay! 

I've also been busy sewing Quirky bird Christmas tree ornaments.  I've made four so far.  I even splurged and bought some pinking shears [early Christmas pressie to myself -- Santa said that was ok] so the wings could be done neatly.  The wings on this little guy were done free-hand before I got the fancy scissors.

Linking to WiP Wednesday.


Monday 19 November 2012

DQS 13 and schtuff

Holy moly!!  I'm in!!  DQS 13 had sign-ups and I got in!  I did not receive a 'we don't want you' message so woohoo - I'm in!  Let the nerves start twitching and the anxious wait to see who my partner is - and then let the excited stalking begin!!!  OMG - I am so excited!! 

To see the other mosaics being created, check this link out and plan to spend an hour trolling through to see all the AH--MAY--ZING inspiration out there!  It took me ages to make my mosaic for my future secret partner and I hope I haven't put too much crazy variety on there.  I love so many things though so it was hard to limit myself to just this selection:

For photo credits, please go to my mosaic in my Flickr photostream.
 Number 8 and 15 are two of my favourite-favourites which means I LOVE THEM.  The colours, the shapes, the space, the fabrics, the EVERYTHING about them.  Yum.  Looking at my mosaic can you tell I love a bit of wonky?  Wonky trees, wonky houses, wonky stars, wonky plants, wonky birds - even wonky squares in squares!!  There are so many amazing things out there to pick from and all of them are YUMMY!  Text prints, red, green, aqua, navy coloured fabrics are some of my favourites.  I love linen too - and dots!  Dislikes would be fabric with cats or Disney characters and I am not keen on gold paint on fabric either.

Ahhhh - I love fabricky schtuff! 

So, do you dislike blank spaces in mosaics like I do? 

Now is the time to share with you how to make your pictures in Flickr to be PUBLIC so they can appear in a mosaic that someone else makes!  There were several 'favourites' that just wouldn't appear in my DQS 13 mosaic and I hate blank squares so hopefully people will read this and change their settings and we will all have fewer blank spaces from now on!!  I didn't know that my pictures weren't appearing in Danielle's mosaic until she told me my "Can't grow a Mo, sew a Mo" block wouldn't appear in the mosaic she was making.  Not sure if I solved the problem yet so please do tell me if my images won't appear in your mosaic (if you ever decided you want one of my images in a mosaic that is!!!).

Steps to allow your photos appear in mosaics:
  1. Along the top bar in Fickr, go to the second option from the left which is a drop down menu called YOU.
  2. In the drop down list pick option YOUR ACCOUNT.
  3. Within this page there is a bar of options along the top and you want the second from the left called PRIVACY & PERMISSIONS.
  4. There are several options on this new page -- 'Allow others to share your stuff' and 'Allow your stuff to be added to a gallery' -- edit those (edit found on the right side on each line) to say YES!
  5. That should allow your images to be seen in mosaics! 
**Oh and make sure when downloading your pictures that they are set to 'public' as well!

If I have missed anything PLEASE let me know and I will amend these steps!  As a newbie to Flickr there are always things to learn so keep teaching me people!!


Sunday 18 November 2012

The kindness of strangers

The kindness of strangers (not everyone listed here is a stranger!) in this sewing/quilting/crafting blog world is astounding!  Just when I think the world is a big bad place, something wonderful restores my faith and reminds me that it isn't so bad after all :)  Acts of kindness are happening all over the place and to all sorts of people!  During the past couple of weeks, this kindness happened to me too - several times!! 

It all started at the London Modern Quilt Guild meeting last Sunday when Annie gave me a bundle of fabric - a fat quarter for every £10.00 I spent in her shop which was a generous offer she had on at The Village Haberdashery during Quilt Market a couple weeks ago.  She picked these for me and they are perfect!  Lime green, grey, white, blue and red - oh yes!

At the meeting, Charlotte also gave me some fabric - a roll of Stof fabric "just 'coz"!!  Charlotte knew I would love it and could use it.  How kind and sweet was that!?  These are the colours I am using in my KING SIZE wonky log cabin quilt - greens, purple and greys!

A little while ago I was part of a Scrap Vomit Swap of 2.5" squares and I blogged about the three sets of squares that I received.  I moaned mentioned that most of the squares I received were brown and then the kindness of strangers happened!  I had Erin of Missy Mac Creations [the mastermind behind Donktober] write to me saying that she would like to send me some squares for my quilt!  They arrived this week - from Australia!  Wonderful, aren't they?

And Moira of Kettle Boiler, who I met at Retreat in the summer, also wrote to me saying that she wanted to send me some fabric for my Scrap Vomit quilt too - and look at the deliciousness that she sent this week!!  Yum!

And the kindness doesn't stop there!  I am in a group called Lazy Bums and October's challenge was to work on my 'wonky houses and wonky trees' project and I did manage to get one more of each completed for an eventual quilt (?).  Tricia of Fresh Raspberriy Quilts helped me out and made me a house and a tree for my growing 'town' of crazy houses and wild trees!  Awesome!

I was also given some red and black felt from Shevvy a few weeks ago and I am thankful for that because I have used some of it to make a few different Christmas decorations/ornaments, including this little heart with snowflake.

A little red felt heart I made with the felt.

And last but not least, I won an electric copy of the fabulous book Hexa-go-go from Quilt Dad's blog a few weeks ago but had major difficulties downloading the book from the C&T Publishing link that I was sent.  I never did get it to download but the kindness of strangers once again occurred and I was sent a physical copy of the book from the USA from Jennifer at C&T.  Thanks for that!

So basically what I'm saying is that these acts of kindness by "strangers" have made my heart sing!!  When I'm having a particularly blue day all I do is remember that there are friendly, happy, kind people out there making the world a better place one parcel at a time so THANK YOU to each and every one of you for picking me up and reminding me the world is OK.

Have a great Sunday everyone!

Thursday 15 November 2012

Winner announced

A humongous THANK YOU to everyone who entered my little giveaway for some crazy fabric scraps and a handful of zippers, plus a surprise or two!  A reminder of what was up for grabs:

Congratulations to SHEVVY, who said: :
I'm knitting a shawl for my Mum but it's not necessarily
for Christmas, she will just get it when it is done!
12 November 2012 07:03
I am off to email you now Shevvy for an address to post this little bundle to.  Again, thank you to everyone who entered my UR Priceless Giveaway and for sharing what you are making this holiday -- I have gathered a few more ideas of things I want to sew!!  And another THANK YOU to my followers 'old' and new!!  You make me smile with your lovely comments and I appreciate it.  Thanks for sticking around!

Happy sewing!

Scrappy Stash Log Cabin

My Scrappy Stash Log Cabin quilt is done - woohoo!!  Sorry for my un-edited photos - Picmonkey wasn't working tonight!  Here is the finished quilt [now named 'Joseph' by Mr Crafty Shenanigans who said it looked like something from Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat]:

42 block log cabin quilt - done!
When Ellison Lane announced the Scrappy Stash Log Cabin QAL I immediately went to play with sort my scraps.  That was fun!  And messy.

I made a few blocks one evening then made a few more the next night and suddenly I had 42 blocks!  Log cabins go together very quickly and I love making them (especially wonky ones!!) so I enjoyed every minute!  I couldn't believe I had enough pinks, yellows and oranges to make several blocks each in those colours (not my favourite colours) but I am really pleased with them.  The red, green, grey and aqua blocks are my favourites though - yum!!!

So I decided to do QAYG (=quilt as you go) which was my first time.  Maureen Cracknel has a fab tutorial so I tried it.  I wish I had used a wider seam allowance - but hey, now I know for next time!

I chose some of Lucie Summers 'Summersville' fabric for the backing and did a little piecing to make it wide enough, using a piece of red with white dots and a piece of Aneela Hoey's fabric.  Stitch in the ditch holds the top to the back.

Binding?  Scrappy of course!!  This doesn't show all the binding bits but you can see the entire binding in the picture above.

And now I can link it up to the linky party over at Ellison Lane Quilts and cross another quilt off my to-do list!  Check out the Flickr group too!  There are some really yummy scrappy log cabin quilts there.  I love the monochromatic blocks and how people played with the layout of the blocks!

I still have more scraps - perhaps I should make another??!!!!!
Ellison Lane Quilts

Linked to Aloha Friday, TGIFF, Whoop whoop and crazy mom quilts.
November Finishes

Wednesday 14 November 2012

WiP - need more thread!

Don't you just hate it when you are on a roll and quilting is going well then the machine coughs and sputters and you try to figure out why the thread is all jammed up and the machine is groaning only to discover that you have reached the end of your bobbin PLUS the spool on the top is almost done too so you can't fill another bobbin and when you go to find more thread you realise you don't have that colour so you freak out and walk away and --- breathe................................

Binding in place and ready to be sewn on...  just need some more thread!
Yup - I was on the home stretch to get the binding on last night and I ran out of thread well after the shops had shut.  This Scrappy Stash log cabin quilt has already used 2 and a half spools of thread and I never imagined I would go through that much so I was definitely caught unprepared!  So now I will have to go get thread after work tonight and rush home and sew the binding on then hand sew the back of the binding [which I love to do].  Then I can say it is finished and link it to the linky party - but it remains a WiP right now though.  Drat - I had other sewing I needed to do tonight [overdue Bee blocks].

Another section of the scrappy binding with some Summersville backing showing.

Fingers crossed I can get it all done on time. 

Linking to WiP Wednesday

Monday 12 November 2012

UR Priceless Blog Hop and giveaway

Hello and welcome to Day 6 of the UR Priceless blog hop!!  We have all been making lovely coin purses!!  If you are new to my blog - WELCOME!!  I hope you stay and have a look around!  There may even be a giveaway at the bottom!

A big thank you to Madame Samm for such a fun pattern with pictorial instructions, and to Katherine for all her cheer leading and time spent getting us all organised!  The hardest part was definitely finding the correct frame.  I wanted silver but they don't seem to do silver sew-in frames, so I settled with an antique-look sew-in as my seams were quite thick so they wouldn't fit into the silver glue-in frame I also purchased.  DMC floss worked a treat to sew it in.  

A silver frame would have suited my fabrics better don't you think?  I used some fun Laurie Wisbrun chair fabric with some Kona for the outside of the coin purse.  For the interior, I used Summersville by Lucie Summers.  I love these colours together - fresh and happy! 

Also on the hop today:
Day 6 - Nov. 12
Amy's Crafty Shenanigans - you are here!

And now for the giveaway!!  I have put together some fabric scraps and a handful of zippers for you [we all love scraps and haberdashery notions, right?] - and there may be a couple of surprises added to the prize before I mail it to the winner [and we all love surprises, right?].  This giveaway is open to anyone anywhere with a postal address!  To enter, please tell me what gifts you are sewing or making for Christmas presents this year!  If you'd like to become a follower - hello and welcome - but you don't have to!  One comment per person.  The winner will be chosen on Wednesday the 14th November and contacted by email so please make sure there is a way for me to contact you!

Happy blog hopping and GOOD LUCK!