Monday, December 29, 2008

A bit of wildlife..

I had a wonderful Christmas break with my family and that included a walk (albeit a freezing walk!!) in the park with the kids.  I was very lucky to get this great picture of a squirrel.  I know not everyone likes squirrels...but I was just so thrilled with this picture I had to share it.



I was also lucky to catch this picture of our little robin that lives in the hedge...I really liked the way he posed so nicely for me :o)



As this is likely to be the last post for 2008...let me wish you all a Very Happy New Year!! 
I also want to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to you...2008 was a challenging year and the support and the comments over the last 12 months have meant a lot to me...:o)

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Monday, December 22, 2008

It was only going to be a couple of pillowcases...

Early this week I saw Jackie's post about the lovely pillowcases she received for her guild which in turn will be passed on the charity Hole in the Wall Gang.  I thought I could help too and asked Jackie for the pattern so that I could make some.  With a little research I realized that there are a few variations for pillowcases but the end construction is pretty much the same.  I ended up making three for Jackie which I will post to her after the holidays. 



They were so much fun to make and a great stash buster that I decided to make pillowcases for the whole family.  2 sets each!








They might not be Egyptian cotton...but they are quilters cotton which in my books is better.  I can't wait to see how they look.

Friday, December 19, 2008

They say Santa is larger than life....

Hmm have a look at this picture I took...That's my DD2 standing there and they say she is tall for her age :o) 

This fab Santa was outside our local garden center...after we took this picture, the DD2 got to have tea with Santa and hand deliver her letter to him.  She had such a wonderful time.



Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Libby makes one too...


Libby over at - A Simple Girl - has made a strippy quilt based on the one I did in my last post.  I love her version...she has used lots and lots 1 1/2" strips..and together they make a really stunning quilt. 

Friday, December 12, 2008

A hive of productivity...

Busy busy around here... 

This week I finished another stitchery that is perfect for this time of year.  Many thanks again to Cathi who sent me the kit...it is now part of the Christmas collection and it will be on display along with the other bloggy decorations.



There has also been some baking in the kitchen...These gingerbread cookies went to the school bake sale...I did the cookies and the DD1 did the decorating.



And lastly...I had to get some sewing in there..this quilt top which measure 56ish" square was made in a couple of hours......yes a couple of hours!  I remember seeing some instructions for this ages ago and for some reason I just had to give it a go.  (It was one of those "make me, make me" moments.)  Basically I started with my box of 3 1/2" strips and sewed one continuous strip measuring roughly 850"  I put them together on the diagonal, but you could sew them end to end.  Once I had my mega long strip I then took one end back to the beginning and sewed the two strips together along the long edge...pedal to the metal!  Once I had 2 strips together, I then folded that in 1/2 and sewed them together now creating a 4 strip unit.  Repeat to make a 8 strip unit and then lastly to a 16 strip unit.  I wanted it a bit wider as the original size was 46" x 56ish" so I added another 3 rows to make it square(ish)  I can't believe how quickly this came together ...or how it didn't make a dent in the 3 1/2" strip box!  But it is colourful and will make a great Project Linus quilt.




Tuesday, December 09, 2008

A couple of finishes...

Amongst all the hustle and bustle for Christmas, I have managed to finish a couple of things . One is the arm chair caddy (thanks Helen for the great pattern)



And the other was a little mouse made from a kit that I bought at the last Rocheberie Quilters meeting. He doesn't look anything like the one she made so I reckon I've sewed it together wrong...but he turned out cute just the same. He's a little favorite of my DD2 and she has claimed it as her pocket buddy...



Friday, December 05, 2008

Holiday Greetings...

Not satisfied with one elf-yourself movie I have created two...

The Disco one

Send your own ElfYourself eCards



The Country one


Send your own ElfYourself eCards


To you and your family, hope you have a lovely holiday season!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Frosty the ...

Garden....Bet you thought I'd say snowman... :o)

Like many of you that are in the northern hemisphere it has been rather chilly around here.  This morning there was snow on the ground and quite surprisingly for the UK it is still there tonight!  (Normally it melts during the day)

This past weekend while I was visiting my in-laws I ventured into the garden with camera in hand to capture the frost...and here are a few of my best shots...I'm rather pleased with them. 











Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Christmas came early...

Yesterday the postman rang the door with an armful of parcels (I've been shopping...) and amongst all these parcels was a lovely package from Lynda all the way from Australia. I won Lynda's giveaway earlier this month and she was kind enough to send me a bag full of goodies. I really like the Cherry Ripes...they are a bit like Turkish Delight mixed with a Bounty -- Yummy!



Lynda also included a Christmas decoration for my tree. I just love the stitching on this and I can't wait to get the tree up so I can proudly display it. Thanks so much Lynda I really love everything you sent.




Last Saturday was Rocheberie Quilters. It was a very enjoyable day...Caroline has a great summary of the day on her blog and I have posted some pictures of our show and tell on the Rocheberie Website.

During the afternoon I got quite a bit of the stitching done on the Arm Chair Caddy and now I can start on the appliqué.



Saturday, November 22, 2008

A NEW Blogger

I want to introduce you all to Caroline.  She's a local quilter who has just jumped into the blogging world and already she has a beautiful blog that looks just like the pros! 
I know how wonderfully friendly you all are...so please go and visit Caroline and give her a big welcome!

Friday, November 21, 2008

A bit of stitchery...

After completely such a long project I decided the next thing to work on would be quick...and little something for me.  I grabbed Helen's Armchair Caddy Pattern (which was part of the 2008 Angel Swap) earlier this fall and decided it would be the perfect thing to work on in the evenings.  I could really get into this stitchery thing...




Best wishes for the weekend...I have Rocheberie tomorrow and the speaker is Stephanie Redfern.  Should be an interesting talk and just the perfect thing to do on what is suppose to be a frigid Saturday!  Those of us in th UK are set to have a cold one...and the BBC's map of England looked like it was covered by a giant snowball for Sunday's forecast!  Glad I'll be able to sit inside with a cup of hot chocolate!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

IT'S DONE!

I'm so thrilled to finally post about the finished Irish chain quilt!

From Nicole's inspiration of two-colour quilts and the challenge set at the beginning of the summer...to the selection of red and beige fabric back in May! To a completed top in July and some quilting in August...and now I can reveal the completed quilt in November!!






Monday, November 10, 2008

What I did this weekend...

I had a nice quiet weekend...you know the kind where nothing really needs to be done and you can just float from one thing to another....a little of this and a little of that.  So I got some sewing time. (Yeah!) I have been working on another top for Project Linus.  It is the companion quilt to this one.  I'm so pleased how they both turned out...now I need to get some basting done so I can get them quilted.




Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Happy Bonfire Night!

Tonight in Britain the skies will be full of smoke as people set off their firework displays...we set ours off last night as it was a dry night...one never knows living in the UK when that might happen again! :o)  So armed with hot chocolate, and of course my camera we set off into the garden.  I was keen to have a go at light painting with the sparklers and to capture the trails from the fireworks.  All of the following pictures were taken on long exposure night setting for a 5 second exposure time...and yes, my camera was on its little tripod and I used a 2 sec timer to reduce camera shake.  It is so easy now with digital cameras to have a play and get instant results. 









Friday, October 31, 2008

Straight off the porch...

Just wanted to share a couple of pictures taken this evening...both were taken using my little tripod and night setting (no flash) leaving the shutter open for 5 seconds.





Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

It's half term...sewing, a day out and another bird...

It's half term week around here and as a result I'm able to spend more time doing some of the things I love..spending time with my girls, sewing and taking pictures. 

My DH bought me Joby Gorillapod a while back and I've been having a great time using it to take pictures that otherwise would be impossible.  I used it to take pictures while I was sewing...



By using the tripod I was about to use the timer and a slightly slower shutter speed to capture the picture using only the ambient light.  I love the way this turned out!  I was working on half square triangles to make pinwheel blocks...for this quilt top which will eventually be for Project Linus.  I pulled these fabrics out when I was at the Linus Day earlier this month.




The weather was superb yesterday and despite the grumblings from the girls we got out and over to one of my favourite places...Coombe Abbey (you might remember it from this post)  The birds were out in full force on the pond and this lady stood still long enough to have her picture taken.  We also saw rabbits on our walk, but you can't get close enough to take a picture...maybe one day I'll have a camera that has a great zoom on it :o)

The colours are just finishing on the trees and most of the colour is now on the ground.  I took the next two pictures in a little area of Coombe Abbey...a flash would have been too harsh, so again I secured my camera, used a timer and a slower shutter speed to let the light do it's magic.  I'm thrilled with the results...



Lastly is a picture I took of the little waterfall.  I had to hold my camera as there were too many kids around, but I managed to slow the shutter speed down again to capture the movement of the water.