Welcome to our blog.

….. Making pretty things
….. Simple living
….. Growing a family

Three children (17, 15, 12)*** Two parents *** one dog *** Country loving *** Cottage dwelling in the South-West of the UK. That’s us!

We’ve been blogging since January 2010, about everyday happenings that bring us joy.

Just a thought….

“A moment spent in wonder is worth a lifetime spent in awe.”

 

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patchwork

Quilt top complete

Quick quilt progress update.

Busy weekend, but I fitted in time to finish the top of my quilt. More to do before I can call this project done and dusted. Quilts are such a big project. If I thought how much work they take, I probably would never start. One block at a time and the rest seems to follow on. Anyway, good time to show my progress.

This weekend, I used a pomegranate plain cotton to join up the 16 quilt blocks. It is more like a fuchsia pink and lifts the lighter colours. Not sure if it shows it in my photos, but it does work.

Next, I used the light green fabric that has been in my stash so long that I can’t remember where it came from. I think it was passed on to me. It has tiny white watering cans that stand out and have a velvety texture.

I’ve cut out my bias binding, using a continuous method. Basically turning a square of cloth into several metres of bias binding. Always feels like alchemy, but probably nearer to trigonometry. Just need to run it through my folding device and iron. It’s dark navy. Should frame the quilt beautifully.

I’ve found backing fabric that works and a cotton wadding, which is thin enough. I’m pondering how I’m going to quilt it. Options are to machine or hand stitch. What pattern? Just not sure yet.Also now appreciate why quilters have tall friends with long arms or tall fences. Quilts are so big to photograph.

The sun was streaming through the velux windows in my sewing room this weekend, warming the room up. I’ve been moving my sewing machine into the kitchen, because, quite honestly, it is a lot warmer in the winter. It felt good to leave it set up in my sewing room and pop in whenever I could. Easier to iron too, as I could leave it set up, close the door and not worry about anyone knocking it over.

Right, next quilt update, hopefully will show the finished piece. Just a question of finding the time.

 

A bit of crafting progress

It’s Wednesday, and the wind is still blowing a hoolie, courtesy of Storm Gareth. I’m getting a tad fed up with it. I have a few outside jobs I want to do, but they don’t lend to everything blowing around. Never mind. There is always a silver lining. A good excuse to stay in and get on with indoor jobs instead. I have a list, which is gradually being checked off. One item is a crafting update, which is handy.

I  have actual progress to share. Nothing finished yet. Big projects always take so long to complete, by their very nature. Reaching a ta-da moment is few and far between, so I’ll admit I’m only sharing milestone progress this time. Better than radio silence for months, while my fingers spin fibre and textile into something worth showing.Anyway, here is my current knitting project. And may I just say, this is a first for me. Usually I finish one knit and then straight on to something completely different. I’m pretty sure it’s all down to the length of time each project takes. Too long doing the same thing, means I’m yearning for a change of scene.

Not this time.

After knitting my purple cardigan, I took the plunge and dived straight into knitting the jumper version of the same pattern. I know. Bar a buttonhole band, it’s the same pattern. I loved the fit and style of the cardigan. It seems to suit me perfectly. So I’ve got my fingers crossed. I’m hoping that it will be true with the jumper too.

I chose King Cole yarn again, but this time in blue. The colour is called petrol. Not sure why. Maybe I’m missing the point. Whatever the name, I’m pleased with the colour. Strong colours suits me. The yarn is gorgeous to knit with and also to wear. It washes well in the wool cycle of our washing machine, which is a relief when it comes to 100% wool. I find hand washing an easy task to put off. Whatever the weather.

I was lucky with the yarn. They didn’t have enough of the same dye lot, but managed to do 12 of one batch and one of another. I can’t see the difference, but will use the odd ball for the ribbing, where any colour change won’t be so obvious.

Second craft project. I’ve finished all 16 blocks of my latest quilt. I loved sewing these together. Now to decide the colour of the borders/sashing. I find the blocks a bit washed out. Close up they are not so bad. I’d like a strong colour in between the blocks to lift the quilt a bit. I thought royal blue at first, but I might go for raspberry instead. I’m open to suggests. What do you think?

So there you are. Progress updated. I do have a ta-da moment tomorrow. Something I made a couple of months ago and can now share.

Right. Over to you. What are you working on, at the moment?

So, we went in to buy a stack of frozen desserts

Half term has been and gone. It was quiet and busy at the same time. The children have reached the age where they’re in and out without much involvement from me. Meeting up with old school mates on bikes or catching a bus into town with friends for a spot of shopping. Not that they didn’t need a lift sometimes, but the tide is definitely turning. Eldest is already gearing up to the idea of learning to drive in a few months time.

Gulp!

Anyway. I did magic up a day to myself during the week. I’d noticed that Aldi have been stocking fat quarters. Basically fabric that is cut into a rectangle and bundled into packs of maybe 6 different prints. The size is good for cutting and the prints are fun for mixing when it comes to patchworking.

The nearest Aldi is about half an hour away from us. Not convenient as a weekly shop, but fun to drop into when we’re passing. A couple of weekends ago, we popped in to pick up a few frozen desserts, which are so handy to have in the freezer. While we were there, I had a look at the crafting section too.

Needless to say, we left with our stack of puddings and a couple of packs of fat quarters.

After some deliberation (read procrastination), I settled for the evening star block. Using just the fabric out of the packs. I washed and ironed them. I know some people say not to wash fat quarters until they are all stitched up. I’m definitely on the side of letting them shrink before I sew. I like to see what I’m working with and get an idea of the finished size. They certainly did shrink.

I cut out 108 squares in one afternoon. Determined to finish the day with a stack of neat fabric squares. I’m making a quilt and two cushion covers.

I’ve finished five blocks out of the sixteen I’m planning on doing for the quilt. They are fairly quick to put together. I’m aiming to complete a block a day. I need a rhythm to keep going with a project otherwise it goes on the work-in-progress pile if I’m not careful. Happens in a blink of an eye.

The fabrics are more pastel than I’d usually go for. Never a bad thing to shake it up. I may make it a little bit more me with the colour in between the blocks. I’m still undecided. Maybe blue or yellow. Definitely something strong.

As for the puddings, we’ve eaten one so far. Cherry and custard tart. It was very moreish.

In the evenings, I’ve been cracking on with my long line purple cardigan. Tantalizingly nearly finished. All the parts are knitted up. I’ve started putting it together. Working on the neckline, in my favourite two knit, two purl ribbing. Not long now.

Irony is that it should be ready to see out the warmest February we’ve had. I’m pretty sure I don’t usually have the washing out on the line in February. I’ve not needed to use the tumble dryer once in the last few days. Daffodils are out, bumble bees are buzzing and blue skies are being enjoyed by all. Spring is here, it seems.

Right back to work. Have you tried the Aldi fat quarters? What do you think of them?

(edited: quilt top finished here)

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