Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Christmas calling...

Well the Christmas Tree is up and waiting for the big man to come and deliver presents in a few weeks...
The Christmas Tree is up, i don't think those chocolates will last long though!
... so now I just need to make a tree decoration for my little one with her photo and the year on (as is our little tradition) , and maybe make some Christmas bunting with all of the festive fabrics I seem to be hoarding :o)

Ange x

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Beeing Smug...

Just for the next 3 days I am fully, 100%, caught up with all of my Bee Blocks.  Yep, you heard me, aaaaaaaaaall caught up, nothing overdue, everything posted, all done.  First time in about 4 months, since the onset of missing sewjo, and it's a total relief.  I will only have one set of blocks for December too as Stitch Tease has the month off, so just a Simply Solids block for Jo (I think), yay!
@natgiauque finally got my butt in gear and got your blocks finished, yay!
I finished these blocks off last night for Nathalie, and they were surprisingly straightforward, once I got my bum into gear.  I think I had been putting them off as there was a video to watch and every time I tried to watch it my brain switched off and I couldn't remember what I was supposed to be doing!

Right, lets get back to the projects tonight, need to make the most of the man free evening :o)

Ange x

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Nursery dressing.

It's been a quiet week on the sewing front, large amounts of painting and sanding have been a block to finishing up too many projects.   But I have managed to finish this little embroidery for the nursery wall, if the new babies big sister doesn't convince me to have it for herself.....
She's all finished and ready to go up on the nursery wall!

Ange x

Sunday, 17 November 2013

ABC.....

At the end of my missing sewjo time I started to do a bit of embroidery, when I couldn't remove myself from the sofa to the sewing machine.   In order to feel a bit more useful I decided to do an alphabet for a baby quilt, inspired by this fabulous book from Kristyne Czepuryk:

As I didn't know at the time whether I was having a baby boy or girl I decided to make a less girly, more unisex version, and I replaced a few of the letters with other embroideries that seemed a bit more British appropriate, including Bus for B (using the fab Aneela Hoey's pattern from Little Stitches), and Teapot for T (also Aneela's), amongst others.
There are some really cute embroidery blocks in here.

So, now all of the letters are finished, and I just need to decide on fabric to sash it with (I'm thinking these polka dots, which i love!), although I have a little plan for a special embroidery block for the centre first- I just need to put it into action....

Alphabet embroidery layout, with lots of polka dots, yum!
Ange x

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Fat Quarterly, A Finish & Buzzy Bee Progress....

Today is the release of the Christmas version of Fat Quarterly, and this quarter, a certain lady (debatable I know) from Charnwood is featured in this issue.
frontcover 

I'm there from downright cheek (me, cheeky, I know you can't believe it!!), as the lovely Lynne posted a picture on IG of these fab fabrics, saying she was about to start working on a project from them. So I told her to send them to me instead, and she took me up on the offer!  
Available from lots of great fabric shops, including Pin It & Stitch (whose image this is).
At Retreat I was kindly given a F8 bundle of them to play with.  Fast forward about 2 months, large amounts of morning sickness, a completely missing sewjo and a looming deadline (with a very patient FQ team) and I came up with this Christmas Dreaming Pillow for my little one.

It's a simple design, but I really enjoyed putting it together, and hopefully it will sprinkle a little magic on the festive season for my daughter, who is getting greater awareness every year of the excitement to come!!!

So what are you waiting for people, get yourself over to Fat Quarterly, there are loads of fabulous inspirational makes in the festive issue
********* 
And despite the fact I have been  missing for a couple of weeks, I did actually manage to finish the baby quilt for my friend (I haven't tackled the Minky backed one for our new baby yet) the day after my last post.  Unfortunately the building work at ours had prevented me finding a clean spot in the house to take a photo, and it's still ongoing, but I did manage to get this one of it, but it's not great.  It will be gifted the next time I get to go and catch up with my friend who lives a couple of hours away.
Baby Emma's quilt all done.

And I am edging ever closer to being 100% caught up with my bee commitments, these flying geese were made for the lovely Val at Between Quilts, and she has a terrific eye for colour, I LOVE this combination of raspberry pinks, yellows, and golds, with a few grays, and backed in gorgeous low volume prints.  
 @valbetweenquilts I've finally managed to get to sewing machine to stitch these together. I've gone from dubious about colours to <3

Secondly, I managed to make Celine her blocks for Simply Solids, a pair of triangle log cabins, one in cool colours, one in hot.  I think she will have a fab quilt, and these blocks come together so quick, and would make a great quick quilt.
@espritpatch all done! Just need printer cartridge to arrive now so i can do @natgiauque blocks!

Just Nat's blocks to go, so I am edging closer to be caught up, but I have a tonne of plaster to seal and then more walls to paint than you can shake a stick at, this new kitchen will be a clean and dust free space one day!!!

Ange x





Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Don't Judge Me....

Just finished making this cushion for friends little boy. I didn't do the cross stitch, that was his grandma.
Mr Sewjo is continuing his steady march through my sewing room at quite a pace, and today I managed to complete another project.  A friend of mines little boy adores tractors, he's 4, and all the signs are he will be a farmer, he's obsessed. His grandmother made a cross stitch for him, of a tractor, and rather than put it in a frame on the wall, his mum wanted it to be a cushion for his bedroom.  
I agreed to do it for her despite the ugly tracor fabric, as she's been a great friend to me this year, putting me up when I was temporarily homeless, helping me out with childcare, etc etc.  I hope they like it, we'll find out on Friday!
Don't judge me for the backing fabric, i didn't choose it, but im rather chuffed with how the covered zip turned out. Great tutorial from sotak handmade!
I used a fabulous tutorial from Svetlana at Sotak Handmade for the concealed zip, and I was thoroughly impressed that even a numptie like me fitted the zip with no issues!

Moving on from novelty fabric hell to something prettier, I have also made some progress on the quilt for my friends baby, it has the binding attached, all I need to do is join the ends, and sew it down.  Did you hear me people, I may even have a finish for you tomorrow, what is happening to me, I've gone mad!

Ange x

Monday, 28 October 2013

With A Vengeance...

Well I told you Mr Sewjo was back, and with a vengeance it would seem (for me).  Saturday night, the man was off out for a friends significant birthday, and I had the night in (pregnant persons can't be @rsed prerogative!), so of course, I decided to make a night of it and sew up a storm.  

As I needed to get a start on the baby quilt for my friends little girl (now about 2 months old, eeeek!) I figured I would crack open the layer cake of Posy I won from the fabulous Aneela Hoey a couple of months ago.  Teamed with some Kona White, I set about making a pile of half square triangles the easy 4 at a time way.  After a couple of hours I had this big pile:
A big pile of HST's to trim, it's progress at least! :-)
Enough for 2 baby quilts, and decided to make one for my friends baby, and one for our new little one.  The design I liked for us was this one...
Think we'll go with this layout.
and then after a bit of a debate on Instagram when I couldn't 100% decide on the other design, and had a choice of two between
This layout? With a few blocks moved to tidy it up or other one?
and
2nd quilt, choice of this layout or....
I finally settled on the 2nd one, it was the one I thought I generally preferred, but just needed a bit of reassurance/confirmation.  Both of these quilt tops are now together and ready for basting, quilting and binding, which for me, is a miracle, now I just need to find a space for my sewing machine to be set us as the builders are back, and it's utter carnage in my sewing room with all of the boxes.

 I am planning on making a few things for the baby, and am looking for some inspiration on good patterns either online or in books, and things others have found useful and cool.  Any suggestions and advice gratefully received ladies. :o)
And any tips for using minky as a backing fabric???
  Ange xxx

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Bee Blocks, Hexy Action, Fabric and Babies!

All done, just the papers to remove. @knotted_thread
So, after kicking myself up the back side, I finally got the lovely Jenn at Knotted Threads blocks finished.  I have to admit I found the process of making these quite laborious, something to do with being so very late making them, and the multiple stages of production.  You begin by very precise cutting the diamonds, then piecing them, then precisely gluing them to the paper backing ensuring the seam is just right round the outside, then cutting the background pieces and carefully attaching them- and that's without mentioning the trimming of the blocks, the paper pieced seams, and various stages of ironing.  But, lets be honest, they make fabulous blocks, and are perfect for a bee, as you would be at the end of your tether if you had to make a whole quilts worth of them!! :o).  Now I just need to remove the papers from the back :o(

Mr Sizzix has been put into action this week, and within a very short time, produced a big pile of these (around 450 in total so far, should keep me busy for a while).
Mr Sizzix helped me cut about 500 hexies, so you know what that means im going to start.....
So with another little person on the way I decided to start the big project early, yep, for any regulars, you guessed it, I will be making another one of these:
She's all finished!
The last completely hand made hexy quilt took me 2 and a half years, lets see if we can get this one made a little quicker shall we? Maybe, but don't quote me on it!!
The verdict is in, more pink. Now the big question, what to call number 2 that goes with Catalina, any ideas?
And after this weeks scan, we now know the sex of the baby, more pink, which my stash is thankful for, that will help with choosing fabrics for the project, and guess what, I managed to pick up a couple yesterday to kick start me...
A little fabric shopping and meet up with the lovely @quiltova and Bridget at The Sewing Cafe in Hinckley.
 ...whilst meeting up with the fabulous Di (one of my Stitch Tease friends, who was over visiting family in the midlands) and Bridget (one of my East Midlands Modern Quilt Guild sisters and Di's sister in law).  After a small peruse of the local Sewing Cafe in Hinckley we headed out for coffee and cake, well it would have been rude not to!!

I think that's enough for one post, I'll be back soon with some more sewing progress, as it seems my sewjo is kicking right back in!  

Hope you're having a productive month :o)
Ange xxx



 










Monday, 21 October 2013

Slow Progress On The Stitch Teasing...

I am still desperately trying to catch up on the bee blocks that I haven't finished for Stitch Tease and Simply Solids.  3 months with no sewjo really makes this a tall order, but I only have the lovely Jenn's block (from August ST- hangs head in shame), and then my 2 October blocks for Val and Nat and then I will be all caught up.  Added to that, I am Queen Bee for Stitch Tease next month, so I need to get my bum in gear!
Chopping diamonds for @knotted_thread #stitchtease block
I managed to make some progress on Jenn's blocks at the weekend, and got to this point
And i need to find the printer to get the pp templates to complete these. Any tips on attaching them to the paper ladies?
but now I need to find the printer, as these get attached to paper (with glue- how novel), and the backing gets paper pieced, I've never heard of such a strange half and half technique, fingers crossed I can make it work, as I'm a bit of a thicky and it took me a good 10 minutes to work out cutting the 60 degree angle!

I also did a tester block for Stitch Tease next month, for which I had thought to make some house blocks for a new baby quilt, but now I've made it and seen how easy it was, maybe it's not enough of a use of their many talents!  Perhaps I should get them to do a paper pieced book block, like the design in Patchwork Please, which i love, or something more complicated! ;o)
Bee block for me next month #stitchtease. No pp no tricky instructions, because im nice like that!

This week is half term, so my little darling will be entertaining me until next Monday, yay, and as the builder started our kitchen renovation last week (on hold for half term as he is away on his hols), the house is a bit chaotic, oh well, nothing new there!

My new kitchen, not quite finished yet!

Wednesday is our 20 week scan day, so if this new little one (who seems to wake up about half 2 every morning- and needs to get out of that habit quick smart) is in the right position, we will hopefully be able to find out if it's another pink one or blue for a change.  And then let the name debate begin!!

Ange x


Sunday, 13 October 2013

A Little Sewing Interlude...

Yesterday was the latest meeting on the East Mids Modern Quilting Guild, but as we were getting ready for our wall removal, and renovation, I couldn't commit to spending the day out!  Oh well, after spending the morning shopping for Range cookers (not an easy task with a very tired and obstreperous 4 year old in tow) and a large part of the afternoon packing away a load of our stuff (again), I managed to fit in a few hours of sewing.  
Amy asked for Improv, its random, so does that count?!?! Does now. :-) #simplysolids

I started off with this block (15 whole inches) of Improv for the lovely Amy, at Amy's Crafty Shenanigans, it is a couple of weeks late, but I am hoping Amy will forgive me for my tardiness!  Amy is a recent member to our lovely group, but it seems we've all fallen a little flat over the summer and been a little distracted, and fallen behind, hopefully we can all get back on track soon.

And then as I had a little more time (well I avoided cooking dinner), I did some chain piecing and threw together these blocks, for my own quilt, so only about another 300 of these to go, yay, might be done for Christmas 2020, maybe!
 Some selfish sewing for my own bed quilt.

Ange x

Monday, 7 October 2013

The Secret C And Some Finished Bee Blocks...

I can't tell you much about my secret C, other than I have been sewing and finished my first Chritmas project, and it's only the start of October.  I was lucky enough to have a gorgeous selection of these fabrics to work with, a fantastic Riley Blake line for this festive season (available at Pin It And Stitch)


I will show you my completed project in around a month, once. I'm allowed too.

Second block all done and will be posted tomorrow @mrsflyingblind i promise
And I have finished one set of bee blocks, for the lovely Hadley, so that means I only have 2 that I am behind with, and 2 I need to get finished for this month.  
Blocks all done and will be in the post tomorrow i promise!
Oh dear, I think I will try to get the late ones done this month at the very least, so I don't go completely mad only doing bee blocks.

And as there is a distinct possibility that some big burly men will be removing the wall between our old bathroom and the dining area next week, I may be a little busy until then prepping the rooms!

Ange x

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Dipping My Toe...

After very little sewing in the last few months, I have finally managed to dip my toe back in the sewing waters, and as I was incredibly late with 2 baby quilts, I thought I had better get a shift on.  The first for baby Georgia was finished last night (the top was pieced at the last EMMQG meeting), and is a simple patchwork affair with very basic quilting, and then a bagged finish with a minky backing.  A little hand sewing of the gap and then bobs your uncle.
Baby Georgias quilt is finished, with a soft and snuggly minky backing, yay!
After finishing it, I couldn't really understand why it had taken me so long to get those final bits done, but then I guess that is in line with my general malaise on the sewing front these last few months.

I have also started my Stitch Tease blocks for Septembers queen bee, the lovely Hadley, and this has involved the cutting of nearly one hundred, 2 and a half inch blocks in low volume prints, lucky I like you H, that's all I'm saying! ;o).  Susan came over for a visit on Thursday (via Scotland for some reason!!), and inbetween gassing and a little lunch out, I managed to get a few of them cut- and finished it off in the afternoon.  
Laying out blocks for @mrsflyingblind
Actually, once the cutting was done, I have a feeling they will come together quickly, and then there is a chance that if I get them in the post quickly I might not be the last to send as there are a few American ladies in the group who have postal disavantage.  Don't ask me about Augusts blocks, as I may not have done them yet, I promise I will do soon Jenn, I just needed a couple of simpler projects to get myself back into sewing :o).

  And somehow, despite the fact that I have been barely blog reading let alone competition entering, I was one very lucky lady to win the wonderful Aneela Hoey's recent giveaway. On Saturday, my prize dropped through the door- a fantastic layer cake of Posy fabric, and a gorgeous embroidered journal, yay!  And as I ADORE Aneelas fabrics, this is the perfect prize for me, I was delighted!  
My fab winnings from the wonderful @aneelahoey. Thx so much, I love them!! :-)
I am also doing a little secret sewing, but more of that in a few weeks...

Ange x

Friday, 20 September 2013

All Change...

It's been more than a month since I was last here, unplanned, but much needed in the wider scheme of things.  I've been tired, a little drained, and completely lacking in sewjo since the Fat Quarterly Retreat, so rather than soldier on through it, I think I needed to not be here. 

But now I'm back, not exactly full of beans, but back, and I need to get on with it.  I've always been a bit iffy with change, not all change, but the big life changers always have a strange impact on me, send me back into my shell, not wanting to talk to people, especially friends and family.  So I go a little quiet, and then I guess I process the change, figure it out, and get back on with it.

So, what's the big change you ask (or not if you don't really give a monkeys or have been on IG recently), it's the biggest kind (if my memory of last time is even slightly correct). In March of next year we will be adding this little person to our family (all things being well).
There may be trouble ahead...
 
It's exciting, and a bit daunting. Our daughter has just started school, and we'll be heading back into the lack of sleep, stinky nappy stage, all change, and back nearly 5 years.  Hopefully I will have the energy in the next few weeks and months to get back into the swing of sewing, and catch up with my already slightly late commitments, I think so, I just need a little focus.

Hopefully see you here again in less than another month...

Ange x

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Fabric Stroking...

I'll be away for the next 4 days in this lovely building in Birmingham:

at the Festival Of Quilts
 

Working on this stand: