Friday, 31 August 2012

the next Christmas make

First of all, here's a less fuzzy photo of the Christmas twister table topper I finished on Wednesday.

Next I dug out the rest of the isosceles triangles which I had cut when I made the tree wallhanging. I had originally planned on making that one 8 rows high but, when I started laying it out on the table I decided 4 rows high was plenty. So, of course, I had all those triangles left so decided to put them together in another wallhanging but, this time, with a different background fabric.

Here are all the triangles laid out ready to sew.

And here it is with each row sewn and two of those rows pinned ready for the next stage.

That was when my back started twingeing so it was time to stop for today. Hopefully I'll get back to it tomorrow and maybe, if the back holds up, get it finished. Fingers crossed!

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

finished - Christmas twister and reindeer

I didn't get any sewing done yesterday - drat my sore back! - but I made up for it today. First of all I got down to the quilting on the Christmas twister -

I took this photo and didn't realise until I looked at it in iPhoto that you can see the camera - and me - in the mirror behind the sewing table. Kinda cool! :oD

Here's a small part of the front showing the quilting:

And the back:

This is a terrible photo but, as it's now nearly bedtime, it'll have to do until I can take another one tomorrow.

After I'd finished that, I dug out the reindeer embroidery which I'd finished the stitching and backing and binding of during the Olympics - ie weeks ago! I added some teeny tiny bells around the reindeers' necks and coloured them in with wax crayons. That was so much fun, I'll definitely be doing that again!

And here are the reindeer in close up.

I love it! :o)

Monday, 27 August 2012

Christmas twister - the full sized version

I picked out some fabrics and got started putting my full sized version of the Christmas twister table topper together. (Try saying that with a mouth full of caramels! :oD)

First of all the four 5" squares sewn together with a 3" border sewn around them:

Then them all cut into squares using the lil twister ruler.

Next they're sewn into rows:

And joined into their new look squares:

Then I sewed those squares together in a row. I deliberately moved them around so they weren't all sitting the same way.

And finally (for today), pinned and ready for quilting.

I decided not to put a border around the squares like on the original because it's big enough as it is. Any bigger and I'd be struggling to find a table to top it with at Christmas!

Let the quilting begin ... hopefully tomorrow! :o)

sunrise ~ sunset 28 August

Today's figures are:

dawn to dusk = 15 hours and 32 minutes (34 minutes less than last week)

sunrise to sunset = 14 hours and 11 minutes (31 minutes less than last week)

Friday, 24 August 2012

Christmas twister - finished

I managed to get the Christmas twister made today with no back or neck problems stopping me before I got it done. Yay!

Here are the squares joined up with the border sewn on.

When I cut the squares out using the lil twister ruler I stupidly just threw them all on to a pile.

This meant that my first attempt at putting them together went a wee bit wrong!

But I got it right eventually!

This is the front of the quilted and bound mini quilt. It's really fuzzy but you can, hopefully, get the idea of how it looks.

As usual, I love the back. The quilting shows up really well.

I love it. This has helped me decide that I'm definitely going to make the runner (that I showed yesterday) in Christmas fabrics. I think it'll look stunning!

Thursday, 23 August 2012

dressmaking, lil twister patchwork and flowers

I've not been doing much sewing this week as I've been having trouble with my back and neck. Not a lot of trouble but I can't do as much sewing or cutting out as I'd like to. I'm not worried by this - I just have to be careful and not overdo. I think that's the hardest part because I have all these plans in my head of things I'd like to get on with but I just have to be patient. I will get them done just not this week!
Anyway I have made a blouse this week. Just the button threads to tie and finish off and the buttonholes to cut then it's done.

The fabric is a very narrow lilac and white stripe. The buttons came from my own stash - more stuff used up!

My next project is a Christmas one. I'm excited to see how it turns out! Watch this space!

We've had a lot of *really* heavy rain here this week and it's battered our gladioli so hard that they were beginning to give up the will to stand up straight. So I went out and cut the ones that were keeling over and brought them inside. Aren't they just gorgeous? I think so!

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

a lovely parcel!

Today we got a parcel all the way from Debbie and Jason in Nova Scotia, Canada. I'll let you see the other stuff from the parcel at another time because I'm far too excited by what was in said parcel for me! Fabric! Wheeeeee!!!!!

First of all there are some fat quarters:

And some cuts - LOVE the owl Christmas fabric!

And who would believe that it's easier to buy tartan fabric in Canada than it is here in my part of Scotland? Isn't that just totally ridiculous?

The top tartan is Royal Stuart, the bottom left is Black Watch and the one on the right is the Nova Scotia tartan. Makes sense for us not to be able to buy that one here but the other two should be available at my local fabric shop. I keep asking for it and they say they keep asking for it but their suppliers don't have any. I wonder if I should tell them that I managed to get some ... from CANADA!!!!

Monday, 20 August 2012

a crafty cuppa!

Douglas and I went out for coffee the other day and somehow I managed to persuade him to go to Very Crafty in Lower Largo. It's been the place I've spent a lot of wee bit of money in the past but I knew that if Douglas came with me, I wouldn't spend too much ... and that he would pay for it! I'm not as daft as I look! LOL

Anyway, the plan worked and this is what I came away with -

A couple of scrap bags - I love their scrap bags. I think it's because it's like getting a lucky bag (of sweets) as a child - you never know what you're going to get inside the bag but you know you're going to like it!

And some fat quarters from their reduced box.

Whilst we were having our scones and tea/coffee (sorry, forgot to take pics of those before we ate them!), I took a look through a bookcase of craft books and patterns which were being sold at sale prices in aid of charity. I picked up this one for half its original price:

Here are just a couple of the things inside the leaflet that I hope to get done some time.

Notice I'm not saying I'm going to get those done for this Christmas. I know what I'm like! :oD

sunrise ~ sunset 20 August

It's really sad to be losing more than half an hour of sunlight per week!

Today's figures are:

dawn to dusk = 16 hours and 6 minutes (35 minutes less than last week)

sunrise to sunset = 14 hours and 42 minutes (31 minutes less than last week)

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Great-Granny patchwork squares

I've been a reader of the Jodi's Pleasant Home blog for quite a while and about 6 weeks ago she joined forces with Lori from the Bee in my Bonnet blog to host a Great Granny along. I've been admiring all the Great-Granny squares I've seen all over blogland and I really fancied having a go myself. So today I did.

First of all I had to go through all my 2½" squares I had and sorted them into colours:

Then I cut some white for my background colour:

Decided on my first layout:

Followed Lori's excellent tutorial on how to sew the block and produced this:

My second block didn't take me nearly as long to make as I sort of knew what I was doing.

I'm enjoying making these and, as they turn out to be 12½" squares - 12" finished - it wouldn't, in theory, take too long to make a quilt top with them. Believe it or not, I'll need to cut some more 2½" squares as there aren't many colours in those piles that have 12 of the one print in them which is the number I need for the outside squares. A great excuse to use up some fabric.

If you'd like to see Jodi's finished quilt top, take a look here. And, Lori has made some mini Great Grannies into pot holders here.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

the first 'phant - finished

I finished my first 'phant yesterday and, although it was a bit fiddly in places, I do see myself making a good few more of these in the future. The pattern is from the Heather Bailey online store.

Here it is outside sitting on Douglas's knee:

And then on the kitchen counter with my fingers to try and show how small he/she is.

You might be wondering why I call it a " 'phant"? If you're a Nora Roberts reader and have read the Chesapeake Bay quartet, in the book about Ethan and Grace, Grace's wee girl, Abby, is colouring in an elephant in purple crayon when Anna comes home early from work. Abby couldn't say "elephant" so she called it a " 'phant". That's the day that Grace is worried Anna is going to sack her from her job cleaning the Quinn house and Anna is worried Grace is going to leave said job. If you're not a Nora Roberts reader then that explanation will mean absolutely nothing so feel free to ignore it! :oD

Monday, 13 August 2012

reindeer, a stool cover and a 'phant

Over the weekend, I unashamedly sat on the couch and watched the last of the Olympic Games. As I sat there I made great headway with the reindeer embroidery.

I stitched on some beads for their noses - brown for the Dasher & Dancer (and Prancer and Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen).

And red, of course, for Rudolph.

I can't decide if I like the bead noses or not so I'm going to attach more eyes - also beads as seen in the Dasher/Dancer photo - and decide when they're all done if I like them or not.

This morning, I made a new cover for Douglas's footstool. That's another piece of the stash used up. Yay!

Although it doesn't look like it, the inside of the brown diamond is the same cream as the rest of the background. It must be a trick of the eyes that makes it look so much brighter.

Lastly for now, I made a start to my first 'phant. I didn't mean to set the pieces on the table to make them look like they were kissing. It just turned out that way! :oD