Thursday, 31 December 2015

Liberty Quilt and More Christmas Makes

Here's wishing everyone who pauses here to browse, 
a very Happy Healthy, Peaceful, New Year.

May your troubles be less and your lessons be more.

I haven't been around for a while for one reason or another, (mainly travelling) but here's a little catch up post. 
Despite the horrendous flood conditions in many areas of the Lake District we did manage to take our trip before Christmas. We made the decision to continue with our holiday after various appeals called for visitors to keep supporting the economy there, though we did experience some of traumas that the people were going through. It really did bring home their plight and we could see how valiantly they worked to try to get back to normality. We managed to get out and about to areas that escaped the worst of the ravages and the lodge where we stayed was warm and cosy so we enjoyed a good pre Christmas rest. We are certainly the lucky ones and our hearts go out to the families who had to leave their flooded homes in the midst of Winter and poignantly at Christmas time.

I took my sewing machine along with me and almost finished this Liberty Tana Lawn quilt before we returned home. It is random 5inch patches and looks quite vintage in style. I just love stitching Liberty fabric as it handles so well and the designs are fabulous. They all seem to go together so readily and never date.
 The traditional Liberty design "The Strawberry Thief" made an effective border and I just, only just, had enough to go round.
 The reverse showing the lovely backing fabric.

 I also cut a snowflake style motif to applique on to a custom sized mat to fit a small Christmas side table. I machined blanket stitch around the motif in YSL invisible thread. YSL is the best invisible thread I have ever used as it does not tangle or break in use and I  really do recommend it.
After Christmas, I  made another "feather" Christmas Tree in a brighter fabric which looks so much better than the all green of my previous effort.  Not late for Christmas just early for next year!
I decorated yet another Ikea sewing case as a gift for a friend. This time I chose a Japanese theme.
I really enjoyed doodling  the designs on the cases and colouring them. 
My camera broke whilst we were in the Lake District and DH treated me to a new super duper Nikon which meant I could take some pics around Farfield Mill  in Sedburgh, when we visited. 
I was enthralled by these birds which were made from old cutlery, an amazing piece of recycling!

 Note the fish knives in the tail here.
 These smaller birds are created using teaspoons.

 There is always something new at the mill and the standard of the exhibits is exceptional.
Glassware, pottery, textiles, jewelllery, paintings, wood carving, a walk through history with a super cafe over 4 floors of and old water mill.
Well worth a visit.

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Christmas Garland, Sewing Cases & Lego Sleigh

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.... everywhere you go.....
soooooo here's a mixed bag of crafting and Christmas items to share. 

I bought some really thick soft felt at the Malvern Show as the items on the stall inspired me to make something or other with it. It ended up as this garland which will go somewhere in the house to add a bit of festive cheer.

A couple of the ladies in our quilt group loved the Ikea sewing kits (see post here) that I had personalised and asked me to do a make over on their cases. I just love scribbling away and the designs just come together quite by magic. It is relaxing, just like a colouring book but I do the drawings myself.
I love to find related quotes to add to the backs.

I came across this fantastic Father Christmas, sleigh and reindeers in a shopping mall of  the Liverpool 1 precinct.
It was fantastic and all the children were so excited to get up into the big sleigh to have their photo taken.

Here's the special guy in his new outfit that I made for him, standing outside the Grotto entrance that my DD set up for him in Brighton at our curly girlies school.

He spent a lovely afternoon there and all the children were so pleased to see him.

Friday, 4 December 2015

Patchwork Christmas Trees & Friday Smile

It's a couple of weeks since I posted but that doesn't mean I have been idle! I've travelled the length of this country, 
first down to Brighton to visit two of my gorgeous little grandies who were so much fun and so good for us when we looked after them whilst their parents went off to an event up North.

I have also been busy at home making several seasonal items, which I have really enjoyed......
I finished this Christmas table runner, which is edged in gold ribbon.
This "feather" Christmas Tree was a project at a recent class and, whilst it was a bit fiddly, it  came together quite well and I really enjoyed making it. I did, however, resort to invisible thread which disguised my errors somewhat!

I also made a very special commission which is now with it's new owner.... I made a super, completely new suit for a certain special fellow, that all the children love, for one of his appointments at my grandies school's Christmas fair in Brighton.
 Hat, trousers and jacket all in red edged with white fur... Got it? Yes! I bet you know who it is and I will soon have a picture of him wearing it! 
This tree banner, below, is no so special but so much easier as it is made from half square triangles, bonded and appliquéd with blanket stitch.  
I forgot to add parcels around the tree on this one.
I finally finished this Christmas table runner, which is edged in gold ribbon.
I made a couple of sacks.
Handy big padded pockets in this easy Christmas sack, which made it stand up well....
I used up all my remnants of "Frozen" fabric for this one.
We took a detour on the way home from Brighton to stay a couple of super days with my lovely crafty friend Dolores and we crammed in so much.
Thanks so much to D & A for everything.
We visited West Malling and Dolores introduced me to a fabulous but crazy fabric shop.....
Quite a quaint little shop and I really didn't expect what I found behind this little door...

This really gave a huge smile to Dolores and me and so I will add it to 
Annie's Friday Smiles for this week.
I adored it and had a real rummage amongst the bargains and, of course, managed to find some fabulous fabrics to bring home.
West Malling shops have really pushed the boat out for their Christmas shop window displays and these Tree Dresses (in several shops) were amazing..... 
but I was bowled over by all these gingerbread houses on display in the window of "The Hungry Guest" cafe.
We visited Igtham Mote National Trust property, a 14th century moated manor house
The rooms were decorated in different periods for Christmas.
Most of the ornaments on the trees were hand made
It was such a lovely atmosphere with music of each period in the different rooms.

Friday, 13 November 2015

Lake District & Friday Smile

We were busy enjoying our time in the Lake District, last week,  and we didn't have internet connection so I couldn't post my Friday smiles on Annie's Blog, a stitch in time. 
We had lots of smiles during the week so I'm adding a few to join in with Annie's weekly fun.

We were told it was free connection in the lodge where we stayed but it was useless. As a result I almost didn't get in touch with my lovely blogging buddy Chris (Pear Shaped Crafter) and her DH, who have a caravan nearby. We arranged a day out but planned to phone to make arrangements.
DH and I eventually decided to set out for our day out and half way there Chris managed to connect with my  phone so we all met up at Farfield Mill in Sedbergh where we had a great day together. Lots of crafty things to see and lots of chat. It's a super place for a good crafty day out.
 The previous day, DH and I had visited the Motor Museum, Ulverston, and I smiled when I saw this clock over the entrance... .wish I had one at home as I could often do with turning the clock back!

 I'm adding a few pics of MG cars especially for Dolores's Alan who is an MG enthusiast and has a vintage MG. We've just GOT to take him to the museum one day, he'll love it.

 Alan also has a Wurlitzer Juke box in his hall ... much more spectacular than this one.
 My DH, Dave, couldn't choose from this menu and loved the prices. That clock certainly works! Please may I have sausage, egg and chips, a mug of tea and a small cake?..... 
that will be 2 shillings.... which, in todays money, converts to 10p!!!
 Yet another classic MG
 We stayed in this lodge which is so spacious and comfy inside and faces the lake
Each day we were greeted by the ducks and swans who were obviously used to being fed by the visited. I loved the white one but the others seemed to shove it out of the way so I made sure it had it's share of the food. I bought special wild bird food instead of giving them crusts.

 This swan was so persistent and friendly and kept peeping through our balcony.