Friday, 13 December 2013

Getting ready...

Long time no blog!

I'm excited about Christmas. I'm turning the applique Christmas tree into a wall hanging, now that I've worked out how to drop me feed dogs and "properly" quilt.

Sleeping sack temporarily on hold. 

Rabbit quilt on hold.

Mum quilt on hold.

Cushion covers for Mike still not started.

Christmas bags being made.

Busy busy busy. 

Happy days!

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Rabbit quilt

You know how it is... I've got a dozen other things to finish but I saw the @elizabethagh cat block on her instagram page (go follow her, she has some gorgeous quilts on there) and on the Janome website and I thought "that's cute, but wouldn't it look more me if it were rabbits instead?".

So, I've made the first steps and made five yellow patchwork "shapes" which will be more refined when on a background (I'm thinking grey...?). I want some blue, green and fushia perhaps? I'll have to look through the stash and see what I have. Eeee, bunnies!

Bunting frenzy!

I've bought a 50m roll of white bias binding from eBay (it was only about £8).  I thought it was high time I made some bunting, and what better way to start than by making Christmas bunting? I'm not sure that my rabbits will be safe around a Christmas tree (they jump up on the bay window and on the settee) so bunting is ideal as far as I'm concerned.

The fabric is Rowan and about £14 a metre from John Lewis, I think it's gorgeous. I made a bunting for my partner's sister who (like me) loves bunting. I gave her it as an early Christmas present - she loved it!

The yellow bunting is a lot smaller and it's for little Sally who will be 1 at the end of November. Hopefully it'll go nicely in her bedroom :)

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Dillan's birthday

I made a frog card for my nephew's birthday... I hope he liked it!

Sorry about the lack of posts, I've not long got two little house rabbits that need a lot of watching - I've only just started sewing on my machine when they're hopping about my living room. They're sooooo sweet. Crafty posts will commence soon - I'm going to the Harrogate Knitting and Stitching show tomorrow and I'm very excited. There's even a life sized knitted nativity scene - as well as other exhibitions and plenty of opportunities to spend money. Hopefully I'll be able to do a workshop too. Eee!

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Becca's birthday card

I love a handmade card, and as you'll probably know from my past posts I'm a big fan of the "bunting" card - it's fairly simple but very effective.  I got a lovely one from my friend Claire and have copied it many times since. Here I've used a strong background against the bunting, and used pen to create a shadow effect.

It's so simple it doesn't warrant a tutorial, I would only say this - the bunting triangles will be smaller than you first think!

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Farmer's Wife Quilt...

I've been getting restless with quilts. I have never been the most patient of people, and making quilts with one continuous pattern is getting a little bit dull. I've looked into various basic block combinations but not felt enough "pull". Then, I discovered this book....

The Farmer's Wife Weekly magazine ran a competition in 1922 for the letters answering the question "would you let your daughter marry a farmer?". There were various cash prizes for the best letters. Over 7000 people wrote in, and the best letters have inspired a block which makes up the pattern on the quilt. I'm going to attempt this as I liked the idea of picking and choosing on a large project, and will be using a limited colour palette (hello, dark reds and yellows!). I'm fully expecting this to take me years.

Can't wait!

Friday, 4 October 2013

More bibs, and booties too!

I've made some little dribble bibs for baby Joshua, there were 5 but I realised as I was ironing them that the one with little teddy bears had them wearing red and white stripy jumpers! Nooo! So there's only 4 going to him at the moment.

The lovely little blue booties were made by my mum (who is the fastest knitter I know).  So cute! I was tempted to keep them for myself, but I couldn't deprive a tiny baby of footwear..... :)

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

In Today's Metro...

Awww, bless! I quite fancy knitting a little bird's nest now....

Monday, 19 August 2013

Quilting Workshops at Just Quilting

I've just booked myself and my mum in for a "Christmas Crafts" workshop in November with Just Quilting in Camperdown, Newcastle upon Tyne.  Eeee! I'm very excited already.  I might have to start stocking up on Christmassy fabrics... seeing as I already have over half of the Christmas presents for people this year already bought.  Don't worry, I'm not mental, it just makes life easier to spread the cost throughout the year. 

Christmas Christmas Christmas!

Beautiful fabric from this shop.
Exciting exciting exciting!

Basically, as soon as my birthday is over (first week of August), I start getting excited and begin to make presents....


Saturday, 10 August 2013

Dribble Bib Practice!

I've been practicing making dribble bibs with microfibre cloths (my sewing machine went mental when I tried using towels, and they were too thick for bibs too). More to follow!

Sunday, 4 August 2013

Brazilian Prisoners Knitting

I've just read this news story about Brazilian prisoners working for designer Raquel Guimares, knitting pieces for sale across Brazil and even exported to the US and Japan.  I think it's a fantastic idea, the prisoners receive 75% of the minimum wage for their work and 25% of what they earn is put aside for their release. 

They also get one day taken from their sentence for every three days of knitting.  These men are being taught a skill, they're given something that will give them satisfaction to complete and they are able to earn money for when they finish their sentences.  

Brill.  More of this sort of thing!

Monday, 29 July 2013

Kaffe Fassett

Who wants to know a little bit about Kaffe Fassett? Even if you don't know the name, surely you'll recognise his style - big bold colours and patterns, see the pictures below!

Here's a "ten facts" I've put together myself - not copied and pasted like almost every article I've found about him online thus far...

Kaffe Fassett

  • Kaffe Fassett was born Frank (not so fancy, eh) Fassett in San Francisco in 1937.  His name rhymes with "Safe Asset" (I've been calling him Kaf-fe all these years, whoops!)

Young Kaffe

  • He's lived in England since 1964, when he dropped out of the Museum of Fine Arts School in Boston and moved to the UK to paint.

Bill Gibb (l) and Kaffe (r), taken from here

  • Kaffe visited a Scottish wool mill with his friend, fashion designer Bill Gibb. He loved that the colours found in the natural landscape around him were the same as coloured wool from the mill, and he bought 20 colours and some knitting needles.  On the train back to London he asked a fellow passenger how to knit... and Kaffe's love of knitting had begun!

A selection of knitted designs.

  • His first design appeared as a full page spread in Vogue Knitting magazine.

Free knitting pattern for this found here!

  • On the BBC program "Pebble Mill at One", Kaffe launched a competition asking people to send in a needlepoint image of their favourite thing, which received over 2600 entries! These formed the Pebble Mill at One Heritage Tapestry which apparently is still on display at Harewood House (I can't see any pictures of it on the website though, boo)  

Those cherries look gorgeous!
  • He was the first living textile artist to have an exhibition at the V&A in 1988, this went on to be shown in Finland, Holland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Australia, Canada, USA and Iceland .

A set of brightly coloured flower needlepoint cushions

  • His first book, 'Glorious Knitting", sold 40000 copies in the first fortnight of its release.
I'm pretty sure my mum owns this... Hi mum! :)

  • He has designed pieces for people such as Barbara Streisand, Lauren Bacall, Shirley MacLaine.  However, he says of this "It's nice to drop their names into articles, but they wear an outfit once and then give it to charity. Most of my fame came from writing books".

Beautiful, I especially love the middle one with the leaves.

  • He still teaches workshops - read this post from a lady that attended a quilting one in the US.  I'm jealous!
Some Kaffe fabrics from here - aren't they lovely!

  • Oxfam asked Kaffe to work with weavers in India and Guatemala, a range of striped fabrics is being produced for use as shirt fabric, bed throws and patchwork fabric.  
Phew! I've been looking in my copy of Kaffe Knits Again that I won in a Making Magazine competition (see previous post)... What to make first, that's the hardest decision! 

Saturday, 27 July 2013

Long time no see!

Woah, I've been so busy with non-crafty things that I've had no time to blog. It's annoying how work gets in the way of things! So, what have I been up to? I finally finished the summer baby quilt, hurrah! I'm going to the baby shower soon so I can give it to the mama then (along with some little Geordie burp cloths, howay the lads and lasses!).

I've also finished the two quilts for Iris and Hazel - as you can see below. I posted a photo of them in the Making Magazine competition on their Facebook page and won a signed Kaffe Fassett book, yay!

I've made a biiiig head start on the quilt for my mum...

And started a new quilt too! I bought a squared notebook and oh-my-gosh it makes designing patterns sooo much easier.
Happy days, eh!

Thursday, 6 June 2013

Burp cloths

Dave at work had his birthday on Monday and brought in yummy cakes made by his wife - on her due date! Cor, I don't know if I CBA to make cakes for my partner's work mates when I was 9 months gone. Did I remember to take a photo of the burp cloths I made? Nope. But he seemed pleased with them - two pink spotty ones and one with pears on.

Tuesday, 4 June 2013


I've bought the fabric (£6/m) to do the binding on Iris and Hazel's quilts - I thought it would be nice if they had the same. I'm doing it nice and thick - 3.5" wide (as wide as I could go with the metre of fabric I had already bought). If only I could find where I've put my wadding!

I saw both girls last Saturday. They're absolute cuties!

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Hazel's Quilt

Work in progress - currently making a strip quilt for my friend Claire's youngest daughter (her older daughter will be getting a pink one when I can afford to buy some more material)..... And yes, it desperately needs ironing!

Sunday, 19 May 2013

Wish list - Newcastle

I thought I would try something a little different as I've been working on the same quilt for quite a while now and I don't feel like I'm posting enough entries in this blog.  So, I fancied making a wish list of things with a very loosely interpreted theme.  Today, things from my adopted home city of Newcastle upon Tyne!

Newcastle tram / bus scroll vintage style poster print
Newcastle Bus Scroll Print - from destinationprintsuk on Etsy.  There's something about these prints that seems timeless - I probably have enough transport related posters in my home but there's always room for some more! 

Porcelain lace heart dish
Porcelain Lace Heart Dish - by Jessicacatherinecreates on Folksy.  Isn't this gorgeous? I love seeing lace on ceramics, and the red makes it stand out.  So pretty! The seller also has lots of other ceramic designs on her shop page - some would look lovely on a Christmas tree (never to early to start buying for Christmas, I say...)

Limited Edition Giclee Print of 'Usain' Hare (edition of 100)

Limited Edition Giclee Print of 'Usain' Hare (edition of 100) by Gina Gelder Illustration.  I love anything rabbit/hare like and I think that this print is beautiful. One to save up for! Check out her shop for some lovely squirrel prints, too.

Quirky kitsch Playmobil light pull ( lightpull, lamp pull )
Playmobil Light pull - Welcome to Dodds Design Shop.  All I can say is, I absolutely love Playmobil as a kid and would've given anything for one of these - several designs available and great value too!

Pair of comic book table place mats
Pair of comic book table place mats - Theupcycler.  I have a soft spot for old comics (and I used to read both the Dandy and the Beano).  How great would these be in a retro themed kitchen diner?

Iconic Newcastle/Gatehead Cufflinks
Iconic Newcastle/Gateshead Angel of the North Cufflinks - Alison Wiffen Ceramics.  It would be rude to have Newcastle post without the Tyne Bridge featuring, eh! Very stylish - a great gift for Father's day, perhaps? :)

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Edward's Quilt

A school friend of mine recently had a little baby called Edward, who arrived three weeks early - that'll teach me that no matter how hard you try to be organised somehow you'll be thrown off your best made plans!
I came back from a lovely weekend away in the Lake District with my partner yesterday at lunchtime - he put the final of the snooker on at 2:30pm. Nothing sends me to my sewing machine faster than sports on tv. I watch my partner play in pool competitions during the week, but they're in the local pubs and I'm normally too busy talking to watch the games. Anyway, back to crafting. I managed a solid 6 hours from fabric cutting to quilt completion - a record for me! (I normally run out of fabric/thread*/patience to finish anything in one sitting). Phew. Fuelled only by ginger wine, too! After a short break I whipped up a few burp cloths to go with, using some spotty and some Dr Seuss fabric.  Happy days, eh!
I might even write up a burp cloth tutorial if I find the time this week.
*I've run out of thread for summer baby's quilt...bah! On hold until I get some more.
Oh, forgot to say, the red quilt for Dillan was very well received :)
Excuse the weird photo order, my phone has a mind of its own...