Friday, 31 January 2014

First Pants Bag of 2014 :)

Just a little finish this week to share ... I made a Pants Bag for the daughter of my friend Fran @ Patchy Rose. Fran and I met through blogging and started supporting each other after she won my birthday giveaway last year.

Fran's daughter had mentioned liking one with strawberries to her Mummy so I begged offered to make it. I used some red and green scraps and two lemon fat quarters from my stash and here it is:

And the back, I just loved doing the appliqué of her name:

Fran sent me a lovely email, here's just a little extract:

Wowsers, there was one incredibly happy girl here tonight! Grinning like a Cheshire cat, and bouncing all over the place... 

Fran and I are part of a virtual quilting bee and we are all meeting up at the end of March to swap our quilts! Am very much looking forward to it! Don't you just love fellow bloggers and quilters - linking up to two of the best: Amanda Jean @ Crazy Mom Quilts and Sarah @ Confessions of a Fabric Addict

Have a great weekend x

(Pants Bags - so called because when I travel I don't like to put my drawers (pants) in other people's drawers so I keep them safe and snug in a bag which I can hang anywhere!)

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Positive ponderings on all parts of the process ...

Now I know my 'soldier's quilt' is going to a US serviceman, I'm working on it with renewed energy! Thanks again to Jennie @ Porch Swing Quilts for reading my post :) 

I've nearly finished the second four rows and thought it would be nice to share with you some of the process with some photos.

So, we start by making 36 half squared triangles (made from 72 x 6.5" squares):

I like to press before cutting: 

Then, trim down to 5.5":

Add 12 x 5.5" white squares and you're ready to sew them all together. Keep your pattern close by, then you won't sew the squares the wrong way around ... apparently! Come here, little seam ripper:

Then you have your four rows ready to sew into your blocks:

I have pressed all the seams open and like to press the 'joint' first - seems to make it easier when you then run the iron along the rest of the line:

And voila, here's another block:

I love ALL these stages! Seriously, I do ... they're all important parts of the process which lead to the wondrous finish - c'mon, what's not to love?!

Linking up with Lee @ Freshly Pieced and Lorna @ Sew Fresh Quilts:

Sew Fresh Quilts

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Sunday Sewing ...

I've had a very productive day in my sewing room today working on a few different projects.

Now that I have a home for my 'Soldier's Quilt' (see here), I've been making some progress on that (will post photos next time) and I've also made the next strip on our Strip Bee. This is Round #5 and I'm working on Sarah's strip this time:

So many bright colours so these were my fabric choices:

And a little sneak preview:

Also, I've started making my first Pants Bag of 2014 for the daughter of one of the Strip Bees ladies, Fran (@ Patchy Rose). Can you guess what it's going to be:

And surprise, surflipppinsurprise I haven't managed to get to the end of January without some more fabric purchases! YES, all the receipts are in the tin:

In my defence, these 3 are crucial additions to my stash as they will make the backs to three quilts (2 x baby quilts, I've yet to start):

Sadly, the only one I can name is this one, which is 'Iony' design by Maria Kalinowski for Benartex (water C) which I'm hoping will back my soldier's quilt quite nicely:
Linking up with Molli Sparkles Sunday Stash, hosted today by Sarah's Quilts (whose purchases make mine seem very tame!) and Karen at Sew Many Ways:

Molli Sparkles

Friday, 24 January 2014

Happy retirement :)

What a wonderful retirement do we had yesterday for my friend. We first worked together for two years in 1996 then again for the last 4 years. This was my special gift to her:

There were tears:

And laughter at the pipe and slippers:

And funny speeches:

And she loved the quilt:

Happy retirement, you 'Lippy Plonk' ... you will be greatly missed :'/

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Help me find a home for this one ...

It's been a while since I've worked on my 'Soldier's Quilt' for a few reasons:

1) Christmas Gift makings
2) Holidays
3) It has no 'owner'

I don't know about you but I work better if I'm on a deadline and my heart is engaged in my quilt-making because I have a special recipient in mind.

I have wanted to make a quilt for a serviceman for some time, having seen lots of USA posts about it. I contacted a UK and USA organisation about passing my quilt on but never received a reply. So I'm a bit stuck and thought who better to help me out than my fellow quilters.

My colours represent the UK based charity - Help for Heroes flag:

Here's where I'm up to tonight:

And a close up of the fabrics:

I'm half way through piecing the top now and really want to carry on to a finish. This will end up being a decent sized lapquilt - about 65" x 65". I would have done more tonight but Nell wanted my chair:

So, who knows a serviceman who would like to receive this quilt? I hope one of my blogging friends can nominate someone and I will post anywhere.

** UPDATE 23/01/14 ** - 'Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.' 

One of my wonderful blogging friends, Jennie over at Porch Swing Quilts has found me a serviceman (please read her sweet comment below) so I now have a home for this quilt and I cant wait to finish it  :)  :)  :)

Linking up with the lovely Lorna @ Sew Fresh Quilts:

Sew Fresh Quilts

and Heather & Megan @ Quilt Story:
Fresh Poppy Design

Sunday, 19 January 2014

I'm back ... and look what's on my lap already :)

We had the most wonderful time on our ski holiday in Avoriaz (France) - the four of us look forward to it all year then, sadly, it's over in a heartbeat. Please let me share a few photos with you:

Back safely yesterday and I finished quilting my 'lippy quilt', buried all the knots, attached the label and made the binding! I was so chuffed to find 1/2 yard of the love hearts fabric in my stash which I had used in the quilt so I think it's going to finish this off perfectly. 

My favourite part - hand sewing the binding - expecting it to take a few hours!  Only 4 days to the retirement lunch - easy peasy:

Linking up with Karen over at Sew Many Ways: 

Sunday, 12 January 2014

Normal service will resume shortly ...


This morning:

DH, his sister and husband and I are on our skiing holiday in Avoriaz, France. Cannot wait to get out there!