Happy New Year 2017

Happy New Year Everyone!

Finished 2016

It’s been a busy year for me again and the patchwork has taken a bit of a back seat. I did finish four projects namely the sausage dog, the green stars quilt, the tardis and the F2F quilt. I can’t take credit for all the blocks in the F2F quilt but I did assemble and quilt it myself. I spent lots of time this year making the tiny blocks for the Loyal Union Sampler and also lots of 12 inch blocks for the F2F Block Swap organised by Kate. So, there’s been loads of partial finishes but not many completed projects as far as patchwork goes. You can see lots more pictures of everything by clicking the “Finished 2016” tab at the top of the page. If you click on the photos on that page, you’ll be taken to the relevant posts.

I’ve been more active on cross stitch projects this year. You can see those on my other blog Sewing Beside the Sea.

Thank you to everyone who supported my blog last year, whether you’ve been reading anonymously in the background or actively liking, commenting and emailing. It’s nice to have you stop by.

Sausage Dog Fun

Hello everyone,

I can now share something that I made for my daughter for Christmas. She’s been wanting a sausage dog for along the bottom of the door for a while. I came across this pattern and just had to make one.

He’s got lovely ears…

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…and a proper stand up tail.

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He was very easy to put together. I made my own slight alterations to the pattern instructions regarding the construction methods for the gusset under his chin and attaching the ears. 

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You might recognise the shiny fabric. I’ve finally chopped up a sari that my daughter brought for me from India.

IMG_20161216_115921855I think he looks very smart in his shiny coat. He’s stuffed quite firmly in the head and tail. I also bought him a collar with red flashing LEDs but haven’t got a photo of him wearing it. He’s very well behaved and has taken up residence along the back of the sofa. It’s too draughty down by the door 🙂

Loyal Union Sampler Block 17/121

Just one block to show today. This one is called Charlie Stokey’s Star and I really enjoyed making it. Charlie Stokey's StarHere’s what the virtual quilt looks like so far.LUS 17 blocksThe blocks all finish at six inches square and details can be found in the Loyal Union Sampler book by Jennifer Chiaverini. I hope you’ve had time to craft today.

Loyal Union Sampler Block 16/121

Good afternoon everyone,

Not a lot of progress to share on the sampler this week. I made the nine square in a square blocks the other day and then just looked at the pieces on my mat and walked away several times. Sometimes I just know it isn’t going to be successful so I go off and do something else. Today, the bits went together like a dream. It was worth waiting until I could give it my best shot.

Anyway, this one is called Chambersburg from the Loyal Union Sampler book by Jennifer Chiaverini. It’s got forty five dinky pieces and finishes at six inches square. I’ll definitely make this block again in a larger format. There’s so much that could be done with colour placement to make secondary patterns.

Chambersburg Here’s where I’m at now.

LUS 16 Blocks

It’s back to Y-seams for the next two blocks. I promise not to whinge!

Loyal Union Sampler Block 15

Well, that was a bit of a marathon. Far too many Y-seams for my liking and they were too small to get under the machine foot so I ended up having to hand stitch them. This one is called Castle Wall and it’s the 15th block in the Loyal Union Sampler book by Jennifer Chiaverini.

Castle Wall

The next block looks quite straightforward. Slowly but surely.

LUS 15 Blocks

Loyal Union Sampler Blocks 12, 13 and 14/121

I eventually managed the Y-seams on this block using the sewing machine. The photo was taken in poor light but waiting for the time when there is good daylight again could take months. So here it is. This one is called California. I’m pleased with how it turned out. It’s the first block in the second row of the quilt.

California

Block 13 is called Camp Curtin. Nice and easy peasy this one :-).

Camp Curtin

Finally, my favourite of the latest blocks, Campfire. I think I’ll make more of these in a larger size for another project.

Campfire

It’s back to Y-seams for the next block and they definitely won’t go through the machine this time. Believe me, I’ve tried! Oh well, I had to learn how to hand stitch patchwork at some point.

This is what the quilt looks like so far. I can’t promise rapid progress with the next block.

LUS 14 BlocksIf you’d like to make this quilt, you’ll find it in the Loyal Union Sampler book by Jennifer Chiaverini.

The Loyal Union Sampler Block 12/121 (Part 1)

Good evening everyone,

Can you believe it’s eight months today since I last worked on the Loyal Union Sampler from the book by Jennifer Chiaverini? In my last post about this quilt on 29th February, showing block 11, there were 56 teeny weeny pieces of fabric sewn together to make a six inch finished block. You can see it by clicking here. Today, I set myself a different kind of challenge. Three hours later…

California (part)

I can hear you giggling! This might not look like much progress in three hours to you but it was a huge challenge for me. I now know why this project got put to one side for so long. The next few blocks all have Y-seams which have tested my patience almost to the limit in the past. I had to sew the white patch on several times and take it back off again but I’m now very happy with it. I know Y-seams are so much easier to do by hand and, I suspect this sampler is supposed to be sewn that way, but that’s part of the challenge isn’t it? I will not be beaten!! If it’s virtually impossible to do a three quarter inch long Y-seam on a machine, why not give it a go? Success is so much sweeter when the challenge is tougher 😉

If I can muster more patience tomorrow, I might be able to show block 12 at the left hand end of the second row. There’s still such a long way to go. What tries your patience the most?

LUS 11 Blocks

Postie calls…

Hi everyone,

Something other than patchwork here for a change. Regular readers will know that I also have a blog for everything other than patchwork here. That’s where this post really belongs but I thought, if I show cross stitch here, just for once, it might encourage all you quilters to get out a needle and thread and do some cross stitch or embroidery for a change, that is if you don’t already enjoy other crafts. What crafts do you do when you don’t have much spare time?

I haven’t been blogging much lately, either reading or writing. I haven’t really had time to do any patchwork but I have managed to do quite a lot of cross stitch in short bursts. Anyway, I was happily stitching away on this project the other day and keeping myself out of trouble, as you do.

IMG_20161012_140140590 Then my postie rattled the letter box. This is what he brought.IMG_20161012_140112453Yes, it’s another kit from Claire from the same series of decorations. She really does spoil me but I appreciate it 🙂 She’d spotted these kits at a bargain price and simply couldn’t resist. Dimensions kits are such good quality. Lucky me!

I’d already finished Holly and Ivy a long time ago…

IMG_20151019_121023508 …and Claire then sent me more kits for Christmas which are still waiting in my stash. So now I’ve got the full set 🙂 It’s been nice to work on something small in between stitching for the SAL. Anyway, this one is now all stitched and waiting to be finished with felt and ribbon. IMG_20161018_144223985 I’m considering making all of the others first and then finishing them off as a job lot. I reckon it’ll be quicker that way. How long will it be before I get the other four stitched I wonder?

Happy Unbirthday to Meeeeeee!

Good Evening,

What a lovely surprise dropped through my letterbox today. My good friend Claire has been sending out her unbirthday gifts again and I was one of the lucky recipients. Isn’t it gorgeous?

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Claire has been making lots of lovely lavender sachets like this one but mine doesn’t have lavender in it. All perfumes make me sneeze and I have a particular problem with lavender so she made an exception just for me 🙂

Here’s the reverse.

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I already have a tiny cross stitched biscornu which Claire made and sent to me a few years ago. It sits on my sewing machine and I use it as a pin cushion every time I sew.

I’m going to use this new happy, bright, cheerful, jazzy number as my cross stitch needle cushion. I can’t stop smiling! Thank you very much Claire 🙂

An Unbirthday Finish

You may remember, way back in August last year, that I began making some green saw tooth star blocks with an unbirthday present from my lovely friend Claire. She sent me some fabric pieces, all slightly larger than 10 inches square as a surprise gift. I chopped each of them into four 5 inch squares and set to work.

IMG_20150726_122402028I had enough to make 25 stars.

IMG_20150727_113114115They looked lovely all laid out together and I rearranged them over and over again to get the best distribution of colours. The next photos were taken in very poor light.

IMG_20151127_183020850Then I had a brainwave… What if I added some Irish chain blocks? I had some coordinating solids that would look nice and then I’d have a much bigger quilt.

IMG_20160426_154551256When sewing them together, it’s a good idea to pay attention or you might make a mistake like I did. OOPS!

IMG_20160430_143806881Thankfully it wasn’t too difficult to put right. Now, after quilting and binding, I have a lovely happy dance to share 🙂IMG_20160625_162659I was quite shocked to look back through my posts and find that I’d originally received these fabrics last August. It’s taken almost a year to get them all sewn up. Better late than never.

IMG_20160625_162317955Thank you so much again Claire. I couldn’t have made this without your very kind unbirthday gift. I hope you like what I made 🙂

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