Friday 31 October 2014

Scary ....

... I went to the Hairdresser this morning for my regular feather-fluffing session, and wow, my hairdresser has changed in the 5 weeks since I last went!

Happy Halloween everybody

Monday 27 October 2014

and the winner is ....

Oh hang on, just let me explain first how I chose the winner of this e-book.  The review was posted on this blog, and also on Yorkshire Modern Quilt Group's blog, here.  All the comments on my own blog are numbered, but those on YMQG's are not (yes, I know I said I would get that sorted, but I forgot!).  So all I did was allocate numbers to the comments on there running straight on from those on here.  That gave a total of 64 for Mr to chose from, and the number he chose was comment number 53

and number 53 is Pauline, who said
Congratulations Pauline and thanks to everyone who entered.  Don't forget to keep an eye on both blogs as there will be another giveaway soon.

Sunday 26 October 2014

and now the party's over ...

... and just in case you were worried about how quiet I was, the reason was the internet connection at the hotel.  As I said in my last post, it was was broken, then it was fixed and we could all get online for the day.  I don't know what happened, but overnight I lost access again and could not re-connect until I got home, although other people were able to.  I could connect via my phone, but there was no way I was going to write blog posts using the phone.

Anyway, now we're safely home again, after a great 5 days.

Our days went rather like this:

Eat, walk, eat, sew. Repeat. I think the hotel proprietors were worried in case we felt hungry.  The food was all superb and everything was home-made by a great chef.  The walking was essential as a weight-limitation exercise, but I'm not sure it worked in my case.  We were on the coast so the walks were along the seafront and as it was really outside the holiday season, it was all fairly quiet. Of course the walks may have included visits to the local quilt shop by some people.

Here we are, just a few hours into our five days, aren't we looking neat and tidy?  That soon changed I can assure you, but no, there are no photos of the same areas later in the week.
As you can see, there were some very talented people making some wonderful quilts.

Of all the projects I took with me, several of them did not even make it out of their bags, but I did finish one quilt top, made some test blocks for some ideas I have for the future, and prepared the pieces for the blocks for another quilt.

By the end of the week, some people went home with completed projects, as you can see.

Scrappy decided to lay some blocks out on a bed, to see what they would like in a quilt.  I felt she needed a glamorous assistant to show them off, but she didn't.  Guess who won that battle?

It was a great week, thank you so much QuiltHaze for organising it.  Now, what date is the next one?

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 ...

Update: due to changes in EU taxation laws, I am no longer selling my patterns on Craftsy, or on my blog.  However, some of them are available for sale on Payhip.

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 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?
09 10