Monday, 20 October 2014

we're here ...

Firstly, I apologise for the 24 hour silence from me.  There has been a problem at the hotel with the internet, but that got sorted out this evening.

Do you think we've got enough "stuff?  Well, just in case, we've also got things on the back seat of the car, and my machine had to travel on the floor behind my seat, poor big Brother.

Anyway, we arrived safely, despite the best efforts of a couple of motor bikes on our way.  By the time we had taken our bags into the sewing room, and our clothes to our rooms, (yes we did just about find room in the car for a change of clothes and our toothbrushes) it was time for afternoon tea and home made cakes.  Then there was time for a little sewing before dinner. The dinner was superb, and the hotel proprietors definitely think that we all need feeding up if the dinner was anything to go by.  A little more sewing after dinner and it was time for an early night.

Breakfast was a 3-course meal again.  After that Scrappy and I went for a brisk walk along the seafront into the town and wandered around town for a little while.  Believe me, we needed to walk off the breakfast, but guess what?  When we got back, we found that morning coffee and home made biscuits were laid out waiting for us.  We did fit in a little more sewing, before lunch, followed by sewing, afternoon tea, a walk, sewing, dinner, sewing and then the internet was back, so here I am.

So that was yesterday, and today. Tomorrow I'll try and show you what we've been working on.

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Ready to go ...

In a couple of hours I'm off on a five day quilt retreat.  Do you think I've got enough "stuff" to work on?
I've got three machine projects, (all throw size quilts, only one of which has been started so far), one hand applique table topper and a  load of experimental things to play with.  I've never been on a retreat before so I am very excited, but really don't know how much I should take with me.  I must remember to pack a toothbrush and change of clothes somewhere too. And I'll need my camera, and my Kindle, my phone and my laptop, oh yes, and all the chargers, some sachets of my favourite hot chocolate for when I'm awake in the middle of the night, and I've just remembered I need to take some Steam-a-Seam and some freezer paper.  Now I just need to keep my fingers crossed that Mr Fixit and my father stay fit and well while I'm gone so I don't need to come home early. 

Assuming the hotel has wifi, I'll be back soon to tell you what I've been up to.


By the way, don't forget my giveaway, here

Friday, 17 October 2014


Remember these?  A few weeks ago I was making 200 9-patches, each measuring 3 1/2" for a swap being organised by Barb over at Fun With Barb.






Well, this week I received my swapsies back, and they are gorgeous.  I really want to start playing with them, and I even know what I am going to do with them.  All I need now is the time!

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Giveaway ....

(This book is published by Martingale Publications, and all the photography shown is by Brent Kane.)

Simply Modern Christmas by Cindy Lammon, has some great patterns which will allow you to dress your house for Christmas.  It includes 14 projects ranging from bed quilts and wall hangings, to Christmas Stockings and a table runner and a tree skirt. 

Although most of the patterns are shown in traditional Christmas colours, ie red and green, I think they would all work in other colours for other times of the year.  Imagine this one, for example, 

 made up with that  special fabric you can't bear to cut up, and this one, with its many pieces, would make a fantastic I-spy quilt for children.

As I would expect from any book published by Martingale, the instructions are very clear and each pattern has many diagrams. I also enjoyed the photography in this book.  Each quilt is shown in a styled shot (I love the Christmas tree they used on the front cover too) and as a full-face shot so you can see exactly what you are getting into before you start. 

My favourite project?  This Christmas Tree skirt, which I might just have to make before I put my tree up this year.

Now, I think I may have mentioned a giveaway in the title of this post?  Well, Martingale Publications are offering an e-book version of this book to one of you. All you have to do is leave a comment below telling me what colours you use to decorate for Christmas.

The giveaway small print:
1.     This giveaway is open to everybody, wherever you live, BUT please remember to make sure I can contact you if you are the winner.
2.     If you are a no-reply person, you will not be entered unless you leave an email address in your comment as I will not be able to get in touch with you.  (Note, if you are a Google+ person, you will be no-reply).
3.     This giveaway will also be available on the Yorkshire Modern Quilters' blog.
4.     The giveaway will close next Saturday, 25 October.
5.     The winner will be selected using Mr Random Generator.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Calling Sharon T ...

Hey-elp as Penelope Pitstop used to say.  Does anyone know Sharon T?


Sharon has just asked me, via a comment on my blog, how she can buy one a copy of the pattern for Tubix, but unfortunately she is a no-reply blogger so I can't reply directly.  If anyone knows her, please would you pass this information on to her, or if you see it this post yourself Sharon, here is the answer.

I will be uploading this pattern to my pattern store on Craftsy tomorrow, so you can buy it then, or you can buy it directly from me, I will put a new page on the blog tomorrow it can be purchased then.

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

You couldn't make this up ...

... My father has decided to apply for a Blue Badge which would then allow any car he is travelling in to park in designated disabled parking places.  He is now over 90, with a dodgy heart and has difficulty in walking more than about 20 yards without needing to stop and rest.  In order to get this badge, he has to attend an assessment.  With me so far?

OK, so he makes an appointment for this assessment, which will be in mid-November (good job this isn't urgent then isn't it?).  When the confirmation letter arrives, it also tells him that the assessment centre is moving from it's current location to a place right, slap bang in the middle of the Big Scary City.  (You know, where I don't drive if I can possibly help it cos it's big and busy and scary, and they keep changing the one way system so I get lost.) Helpfully they also include directions on how to get there.  They read something like this, with my comments in italics:
  1. if you are coming by car, please note there is no on-road parking nearby, however there is a multi-story car-park fairly near. (remember this is in the city centre and the chances of there being any spaces at all is so remote that it's not even worth trying)
  2. if you are coming by bus, the bus station is a 10-minute walk away (what?)
  3. if you are coming by train, the railway station is a 20-minute walk away (whaaaattt???)
We decided that getting there is actually the assessment - if you arrive at their office, you are reasonably fit and don't need a Blue Badge.  We had to laugh really at how well thought out this plan of moving into the City centre was.

It's almost as good as an assessment centre my sister had to attend a few years ago.  She is in a wheelchair, and my father had taken her to the appointment.  When they got there, the entrance to the building was via some steps.  No ramp or anything.  Dad had to ask a couple of strong-looking guys to get her up those steps.  Another well thought-out plan. Ain't bureaucracy grand?

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

What I've been up to ...

... Last Saturday was a meeting of the Yorkshire Modern Quilt Group that I belong to.  We had a great demo from one of the members about how to do porthole applique.  I had a go and thought it was great.  I can see more of this sort of thing in my future.

The other thing that has been taking up my time for the past week is this.

Yes, I've started knitting again.  I haven't done any for years, but recently have had the urge to play with my knitting needles.  Of course, being me, I couldn't possibly start with an easy project could I? No, that's far too sensible.  Instead I chose a pattern with a 40-row repeat on it!  The trouble is that it's a very lacy pattern with lots of knitting stitches together, creating extra stitches, passing them around the room, standing on my head whilst doing it, etc.  I can tell you that when it went wrong it was easier to undo it all and start again than just trying to undo one row, so the first few rows were knitted more than once, twice, or even three times. My problem is that I was knitting in the evening, with the TV on, and was therefore being distracted. I think I've cracked it now though.  I've found that it's much easier to follow this pattern by using the chart that was provided rather than following the "words".  I've never used a chart before, so I'm feeling a bit proud of myself, and am up to row 30. Tonight I'll do some more so wish me luck.
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