Thursday, 30 April 2015

From the boy...

Stitching up a birthday present for a girl friend, not a girlfriend, who is having a Disco party in a couple of weeks.  Dear son asked her for her favourite colours and so I am hoping to finish turning this…

…into a pretty little Anna pouch this evening.  Svetlana is on a roll of awesome pattern releases at the moment, so do pop over for some beautiful inspiration.

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

The brightest stars...

I have spent a lovely day off along the coast at Ceri's, stitching; thank goodness for interchangeable power cords (doh!), and chattering.

As many of you will know, Brit Bee lost the most wonderful, beautiful, amazing member of our group earlier in the year.  One of her wishes was that we finished a pair of quilts for her daughters made from the blocks that we had sewn for her over the first two years of Brit Bee.

So today Ceri and I pieced the two tops…

These quilts are so bright, so full of life, so Terri, so perfect.

I am honoured to play my part in moving these quilts a little nearer to completion, and can't wait to see them after Troods has worked her quilting magic xxx

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Who? What?

I can finally reveal that my partner in the #ukminiswap was Hannah, aka craftyhannah over on Instagram.

She received her parcel on Saturday, and I was relieved to hear that I totally got her!  In the parcel, along with the AMH feathers mini and the Lola pouch, was a little AMH key fob, (well it wouldn't have been right to not make her one!), a spool of glittery ribbon, a kitsch face-spinning kitten thingy and a pin badge…

Because it is sooooo in my nature, I am still patiently waiting for my package to arrive; soothed by the knowledge that it was delayed in being mailed not lost in transit.

I won't be at home tomorrow when the postman comes, as I am off to see Ceri for a micro-Brit Bee meet up, so dear hubby will be on parcel lookout!

Monday, 27 April 2015


I finished it… just!!!

I battled through the layers, broke my foot pedal in the process, but made it to the end.  I may need to tidy up a few little bits, as my control via the start/stop button is a little lacking, but hey, you want to see it?!

I made a couple of alterations to the pattern; inserted a thick interfacing to the base to give it a little more structure, and did not attach the long strap slider in the end, because, to be honest, on all the bags I have made with a slider, once on, the slider has never been slid!  Having added thick fusible fleece to the main length for comfort, I attached a couple of non-wadded tabs to the ends of the long strap, to both increase the length, and also allow me to sew though the layers securely.  I didn't make it detachable, I didn't see the point.

My inside side lining panels are pieced, due to running out of the main lining fabric, but I like the look with the accent fabric.  I also didn't topstitch right the way round the ends, because of the bulk, especially at the inside pocket corners, which for me, made it impossible.

I love how it turned out, even if there are areas which, with a more powerful machine, I may have been able to improve upon.  But it is what it is, and I will use it with pride.

Its first over-nighter will be the Brownie Pack Holiday, I'm all about the glamourous lifestyle me!

Some deets for those who like to know...
Betsy Travel Bag - Kristi McDonough Schnitzel & Boo
Made with Cotton & Steel and Melody Miller linen (outer)
Quilting weight lining - C&S and Kona solids
Yarn Dyed Essex linen accent fabric
Pieced and quilted with Aurifil 40wt

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Betsy Binding...

Getting there!

There are so many layers in this bag, the corners were never going to be pristine and sharp, I am resigned to that now, and I know that when I am not looking at the problem areas up close, I won't notice or be niggled so much.  That's the plan!

So it looks like I am heading for a weekend finish. Woo hoo!

Well my #ukminiswap parcel is still residing in a local delivery office, so I am hoping that my partner is able to pick it up soon, I am getting nervous about whether she will like it!  I am trying not to think about what is coming my way too, I have concentration issues at work enough as it is!

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Insides Out...

There were poorly people, hubby and daughter, my Betsy inside and outside stitched together and some time in the sunshine, turning my white bits pink!

I think this is the only thing from today that you need, or want, photographic evidence of…

I am hoping that Week 4 of the #betsysewalong will give some tips on joining the outer and lining together at the sides, because my first, and second attempts were not so good; I am hoping that trimming the bulk will see me right, but I daren't trim before I know it's as good as it gets!

I am not sure when I got so nervous about ploughing ahead!

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Caught up...

I have caught up and even exceeded the #betsysewalong schedule with a little bit of evening sewing ce soir…

I even did some more topstitch ripping, about 5 times now, to try and get the front pocket looking more presentable; it's not perfect, but it is better than it was, so I won't be gritting my teeth each time I look at it!

I have made a few tweaks, only in the fabric selections, piecing some panels, as needs must and fabric dwindled, but I am rather pleased with my choices so far.  I may get a a little further tomorrow, but if the sun keeps shining, the conservatory will be too hot by lunchtime, cue a bit of lounging outside (listening to this year's round of builders and wood chippers).  But hey, it beats work xxx

Monday, 20 April 2015

The Mystery Deepens...

… or rather my 'To Catch Up' list lengthens!

I have been obsessing over my Betsy Travel Bag, not getting much further, fretting a little over my messy top-stitching, and hoping that with an empty house on Wednesday I will be able to get a move on.

The weekend was full of family and taking it easy, so nothing to show I'm afraid.  But the parcels got mailed, eventually today though, so watch out #UKminiswap partner xxx

Friday, 17 April 2015


Tomorrow I will be off to the Post Office to mail a few goodies including Bee blocks and my #UKminiswap parcel…

The postmaster doesn't even ask me what I am mailing anymore, just says '"Fabric, right?"

I am nothing if not predictable!  One day I will surprise him with a book!

Happy weekend everyone xxx

Thursday, 16 April 2015

Oooh a Wednesday WIP...

Cracking on, albeit at snail's pace…

I love how the front accordion pocket(s) turned out, the back inset zip, not so much.  The thick layers are making my stitches all kinds of random, despite the topstitch needle and walking foot.  I unpicked once already, that's my limit.

I think my biggest problem is going to be the shoulder strap, as I added some extra 'padding' already; there may need to be a bit of a rethink, when I eventually get to that bit.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Sunny Success!

What a beautiful day - I cracked on with some stitching, caught up with last night's Ordinary Lies on my iPad all while the conservatory was still cool enough to sew.

So I go me a FAL finish already!

I finished up my #UKminiswap extras, I will get a group shot before I pop the lot in the mail, but here's the FAL item, an Anna-Maria Horner Lola pouch

I have loved all the Lola's I have made, and this is no exception, and the Cotton & Steel binding has to be one of my favourites.

I also made a good start on my Betsy Travel Bag, not quite caught up with the Sew-along, but a good start nonetheless…

I could have achieved more, but I spent an hour or so soaking up some vitamin D, because I am sure the lovely weather won't last and I've really got to keep those rickets at bay xxx

Tuesday, 14 April 2015


I know I may have been coming over a bit distant, with all the short blogposts and minimal commenting.  My response rate to emails has been shocking also, but please it is nothing personal!

Keeping up with everything has been a bit of a juggling act of late, but it's all good.  I even got a bit of sewing in on the weekend, and no-one complained, starved or got lost!

Here are the blocks I whipped up for Cindy's round of Stitch Tease…

Oh too much sunshine!

Bright crosses on LV background to make an 11 3/4" block - yep there may have been a panicky moment when I measured the assumed 12 1/2" blocks at the end!!

I also finished up some more secret sewing today, and tomorrow will see me finish up the #IGminiswap extras, and be free to crack on with my Betsy Travel Bag - woo hoo!!!

Monday, 13 April 2015

FAL Q2 2015 - Just a little list...

2015 FAL at On the Windy Side

After the rather pleasing successes of Q1, my WIPs are now rather thin on the ground, which I suppose is a good thing!

So this quarter I will begin with listing these two old chestnuts…

1.  Hexies...

2.  MATO…

I suppose if I don't put them on my list it will be sod's law and I will actually progress them, even if only in my dreams!

And these are the only other things I can list…

3. The super awesome Cotton & Steel Betsy Travel Bag, which I am soooooo excited about...

4.  Another Lola pouch for my #IGminiswap partner; the mailing deadline is next week, so I have no excuse not to get this one in the bag this week...

Everything else that I have to do currently comprises of secret blocks, BOMs and contributions, which don't really count, but will keep me busy none the less.

So let's hope the sunshine and productivity continue through this quarter for everyone x

Friday, 10 April 2015


Well if the news/weathermen are to be believed, we took our lives in our hands to brave the outdoors today and spend a couple of hours in the park!  Fresh air may have been in short supply, but the kids had fun on their bikes, and I was able to do a little AmitiĆ© BOM stitching…

When we got home I finally got round to making the bias strips I had planned on prepping a few weeks ago.  I always get round to things eventually!  I didn't take any pictures but they turned out rather well.

I ordered some Aurifil 40wt for my Betsy Travel bag too, so I have parked that project until it arrives; I figured the slightly thicker thread, in 2310, creamier than my usual 2021, and some new heavy-duty needles will see me right.

I have a list for the nest few days, Bee blocks and other 'must-dos', it's all good.

Have a great and smog-free weekend everyone xxx

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Betsy vs the Egg...

Apologies for the absenteeism; the kids were with my parents for a few days, and so dear hubby and I made the most of the peace and quiet, and quite frankly computer-time was the last thing on my mind.

Today the kiddos came back, chaos descended, but somehow I managed to make a start on my Betsy Travel Bag

Sooooooo much cutting and interfacing; this has all the makings of being the most complex and expensive bag I have or will ever make, but I am loving it so far.  I have used my hoarded Cotton & Steel linen, which was waiting for the right bag, I've popped in a little old skool Melody Miller, and am using some gorgeous yarn dyed Essex linen in Flax from my lovely buddy Jude's Etsy shop.

I am not sure when I will get time for the actual sewing; tomorrow has already been earmarked for new bike practice by dear son at the park, so it will definitely be making an appearance on my Q2 FAL list.

I am slowing eating my way through the Easter treats, and a first for me, I am actually struggling, (i.e. I haven't managed to wolf the lot in 3 days!), so for once stitching, or the plotting thereof, is taking priority over chocolate!  I'm sure it'll pass.

Sunday, 5 April 2015

FAL Q1 2015 - 8 out of 10 ain't bad!

Yep, 8 out of the original 10; 2 untouched as they have been for many a quarter, but hey ho, too many shiny new things!!

2015 FAL at On the Windy Side
So for the record…

1.The MATO… no movement at all!

2.  The hexy flowers… again, nothing doing!

… but then...

3.  #ukminiswap - finished here ...


4 & 5.  Two Amsterdam quilts for the girls, ta-dahs here...


6.  #scrappylogcabinqal mini cushion here...


7.  Another Priory Square scarf here


8. Commission quilt for a family friend, which I haven't actually blogged - so here for the first time...

9.  Two aprons and hats suitable for a pair of poor Victorian children here...


10.  Finally the Minecraft quilt from last week here...


Not bad for a bad quarter!  Must have a rummage for some other things to add to nos.1 & 2; my Betsy bag will take priority for sure.

Thank you Adrienne for hosting, and to all the generous sponsors of this virtual boot up the backside xxx

Friday, 3 April 2015


Well one not-so-little-anymore boy was rather pleased to wake up and find that I had finished the binding on his quilt last night…

This was a super easy, quick and painless quilt!  100 x 6.5" squares to finish up with a 60" square cuddly blanket.

20 black and 80 of various Kona greens, stitched with a little Aurifil, (one of those perfect freebees you cannot remember where is came from ones), and backed with turquoise bobble Minky from Plush Addict.

Although I didn't quilt (again), I did bind because I think that looks so much better than doing the right-sides together and turn through option, also as that is my favourite bit of the quilting process, a bit of self-indulgence never goes amiss!

Good Friday has been spent getting all the chores out the way for the long weekend, being flummoxed by the TV trying to set up the internet, and a little AmitiƩ BOM hand stitchery in front of The Book of Life on DVD.

Dear hubby has an Easter egg from his boss begging to be shared, so I am headed for a smashing weekend; hope yours is full of love and chocolate too xxx

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Bunny Boilers

The girls and I made bunnies today…

Based on the peculiarly-templated Martha Stewart pattern, and having been to the local fabric shop for supplies, it was a little bit of stress-free Easter fun...

I made the red/orange floral one for my cousin's daughter, who we will be seeing on Monday, and the girls made a good effort at theirs'.

Easy fun makes, and less calories than chocolate xxx

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Quick March...

Fresh Sewing Day

I thought I was being so organised, eagerly sitting down to do my March mosaic, shame my output didn't match my enthusiasm!

I will have at least 2 finishes for April by the weekend, in fact we are planning a girly sewing session tomorrow, so that should be another thing off my list.  I hope this heralds a new lease of sewing life!

So no falling for April Fools's day jokes today, just a nice walk round the village on the Egg trail, collecting stickers and chocolates on the way, and a little pressie making.  All good xxx