Thursday, 1 December 2016

December goals

December is always busy but I am still hopeful that I can squeeze some sewing time.... maybe even quilting time! Let's try and enjoy the season too!

Hoping for finish
1. Fair Isle quilt - top is pieced! - now need quilting - - this will be my choice for December for Elm Street Quilts One Monthly Goal
2. Open wide pouch  
3. Set of pouches with cat fabric 
4. C PE bag
5. A PE bag

Bee Blocks 
1. Flower hexies for the Inchy Hexie Swap (November. December
2. Bubble Bee (November
3. I love Lucy International (October, November, December)

1. Wanta Fanta - need 2 more blocks
2. Elephant Parade - 6 more blocks before the top can be put together

3. Farmer's wife 1930 QAL and original FW - I am so behind... 
4. Postcards from the World
5. 365 challenge quilt - let's try to sew the third border with all these tiny 3' dark blocks

6. Town and Country quilt - I am so behind....
7. HST modern sampler quilt - 6 blocks behind, catch up time??? 
8. Project 48 - let's try to catch up

9. Pumpkin Passport 

New Project
1. Custom cushions  x 2 
2. Zodiac BOM 
3. Gipsy Wife QAL
4. Bean bag
5. Wall hanging with horses panel


Wednesday, 30 November 2016

November recap

November had started very well, with a quilt top ready mid month but then I have had so much work that the sewing time has been squeezed to hardly nothing. Happy that I have finished 2 stitcheries though. Looking through the massive list now to see what need to be added back to December!

Hoping for finish
1. Make up pouch for Christmas present - this will be my choice for November for the One Monthly Goal with Patty- done... just in time, one more OPAM

2. A very merry Christmas town - finished

3. Fair Isle quilt - top is pieced! - now need quilting

Bee Blocks 
1. Flower hexies for the Inchy Hexie Swap (November) - not done
2. Bubble Bee (November) - in progress
3. I love Lucy International (October, November) - in progress

4. Scandi Bee (November) - finished

1. Wanta Fanta - need 5 more blocks - finished 3 more blocks, only 2 to go!

2. Elephant Parade - 6 more blocks before the top can be put together - no progress

3. Farmer's wife 1930 QAL and original FW - I am so behind... no progress
4. Postcards from the World no progress
5. 365 challenge quilt - let's try to sew the third border with all these tiny 3' dark blocks no progress

6. Town and Country quilt - I am so progress
7. HST modern sampler quilt - 6 blocks behind, catch up time???  no progress
8. Project 48 - let's try to catch up no progress

9. Pumpkin Passport no progress
10. Sashiko Along - finished

New Project
1. Custom cushions  x 2 
2. Zodiac BOM 
3. Gipsy Wife QAL
4. Meadow Mystery
5. Cat bag for Christmas
6. C PE bag
7. A PE bag

And a total of 43 blocks this month!


Tuesday, 29 November 2016

A happy finish!

This month I managed to finish another stitchery.... just in time to enjoy in the season!
I started the Very Merry Christmas stitch-along in August last year and of course, when I fell behind, I abandoned it after Christmas... I also started 2 new cross-stitch projects in January so that was more exciting than finishing a Christmassy one.... I know I am hopeless at not joining in...
I brought this one back out now and then and little by little... well it is finally finished and I am very please with it.

Just need to frame it now! But for now, I will call this an OPAM since it is "finished" and this is one off my Q4 Finish Along list too!
Linking to Sew Cute TuesdayLet's Bee SocialNeedle and Thread ThursdayWhoop Whoop Friday


Monday, 28 November 2016

Blocks catch up

Not much sewing time sadly in the last couple of weeks after a very good start earlier in the month but at least I have made a few blocks...
Three more Wanta Fanta blocks

and this week/end I made my last 2 Scandi Bee blocks for Kay - pineapples!
and one block that I promised through the Get Your Quilty WIshes Granted. I don't think I've ever made a Maple Leaf block before!

These 6 blocks take my total this month to 43 blocks. Not sure how many more I'll be able to squeeze before the end of the month...


Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Something different

In the summer, I got tempted to try making some soap. So I ordered all the ingredients I needed and started playing, using the cold process. It is actually very easy to make and after it is poured in the mould, the soap has to be left alone for a month. I picked into the box now and then (because one month is a long time to wait to see the result of your work!) and noticed that there had been an "explosion" in my box... After searching online, I realised I had a "volcano" soap. And although the soap is not pretty because of the volcano effect, it is still very nice to use and we have already used 2 bars.

I convinced myself that I shouldn't stay on a mixed experience where I must say I was somewhat disappointed with the result and I should try again. But I must admit, I keep putting it off. Having put hand made soaps on my list of presents to make, I couldn't push it much longer... Finally on Saturday, I got all the ingredients out and decided it was time to play again.

I made 2 batches still using the cold process. and it all well!
One batch is lavender and May Chang

and the second is May Chang and Peppermint.

The kitchen smelt delicious for the whole evening.

Now the soap are under cover in the garage, let's hope the result is good in one month time!

And whatever the resultss, this is another one off my Q4 Finish Along list!


Monday, 21 November 2016

Sashiko sampler

It seems that the evenings disappear before I manage to switch on my sewing machine at the moment, so sadly I haven't got much to show since I finished the quilt top last week. However, I had to go into London on Friday. And of course, no train trip can be complete without some sort of hand-stitching.
Sara had just released the last 2 patterns for the sashiko sampler that she started in the summer so this was an ideal companion for the journey.

Square 8 was called Fundo (scale weights)

Square 9 was another curve design: Seven Treasures

And now the sampler is all finished, all stitched. I have thoroughly enjoyed the journey and I love the finished result. I think I will frame it to have on the wall in my bedroom or in the hallway.

But for now, I will call this an OPAM since it is "finished" and this is one off my Q4 Finish Along list too!

Linking to  Sew Cute TuesdayLet's Bee SocialNeedle and Thread Thursday.

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

A finished quilt top!

The top is finished! My Fair Isle top has gone from pieces of fabric at the beginning of the month to a quilt top 2 weeks later, wow!  I finished piecing it on Sunday and I am so happy to have got to this stage, relatively quickly.

During the week, I pieced the other rows with all the blocks I had finished last week-end and I loved them so much that I thought I wouldn't put it off until I was finished with the top.

All I had left was the red zig zag rows - which required a bit of attention to ensure there was indeed a zig zag!
and the reindeer blocks with the snowflakes. This is another example (you can read my previous post about this) where I wish I hadn't cut the strips to the exact size but left a little leeway to cross cut the strips. It didn't turn out too bad with the 6' strips but it was worth with the 12' ones and there is no opportunity to square off the sides if you have cut the strips to the exact size.
With all those new blocks (13 altogether because I did the zig zag as rows, too complicated to be juggle as 9-patch block) made into the last 3 rows and the sashing strips cut as well, assembly of the top could finally start.
And it was going very well indeed but I hadn't noticed that one of the reindeer had broke into a dance...

After a little bit of unpicking, the rebellious reindeer has his feet in the right position again and the top is ready for quilting, I hope this will happen soon. I have ordered some wool batting (that I haven't tried before) because let's face it this will be a winter quilt! and also a wide backing fabric. Stay tuned hopefully this will be a finish in 2016.

37 blocks already for November, not bad for half way through the month!


Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Fair Isle Quilt - a come back and some blocks

Last Saturday was supposed to be a "virtual" Sewing Day with a few of the Lazy Bums girls. I, of course, had great plans of sewing loads on the day... I picked up this long fallen out of love project: The Fair Isle Quilt from the sew along that I didn't manage to follow in 2014.

In advance of Saturday, I had already pieced all the "building blocks": HST and blocks of strips. One word one the strips actually... the pattern tells you to cut strips of a certain size for the building blocks. The strips are then sewn together and the building blocks cross cut into sections. So for example, if you need 4 sections 2' wide, the pattern would have told you to cut 8' strips. This is of course correct but I would have preferred to have cut longer strips (like 1' longer than needed). I know it waste a little fabric up front that way but you are sure to get all the sections you need, cut square. There are a lot of sections to cross cut so you want to be able to square up the edge every so often, which I did and ended up with one section too short so I had to remake one (this was especially true for the fir tree blocks below)

Anyway back to the building blocks, a lovely evening spent trimming and squaring up HST - all 120 of them. On the other end, the HST were big compared to the finished size so a bit of waste there.

 Next step for me, which was my mission for Saturday was to make the Poinsettia blocks, by far the more complex and time consuming blocks in the pattern. 10 are required in total
 One unit, 39 more to go!
 And finally my first block, finished indeed on Saturday night!
 By Sunday, I had made a little bit more progress with 5 blocks completed and 5 more nearly there!
 And last night I moved to the next blocks on the pattern, the fir tree block (6 are required).
 And the pink checkerborder, I approached this one with 9-patch blocks - 8 completed so far, 8 more to go before sewing them in a long border.
 And my first row is done, yeah!
I have made 24 blocks so far, plenty more to make! 
I am loving how this is turning out. And with most of the fabric cut (but the sashing) and the building blocks more or less finished, I am really hoping to have this quilt on my bed sometime in the winter. Wish me luck and watch this space!
So far 24 blocks for the 350 blocks challenge, not a bad start of the month!



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