Wednesday, 29 December 2010

The Week Of Thoughts

I always like this week of the year. All the frenzy of the Christmas period has just left and there's the excitement of the New year just waiting around the corner. I like the fresh page feeling.

I've never been one for resolutions, I don't like the thought of always setting goals too high and failing. I have been considering the year ahead quite a bit over the past few days though.

I have very naughtily put on nearly two stone this past year and I really have to do something about it. I know my knee has stopped me being too active and, as a last straw, my back went on Sunday as I was making the bed. I am not going to say I am going to go on a mad fitness regime and loose the two stone, I AM going to do my best to be more active and be more moderate and considerate in what I eat.

The other area I would really like to change is my fabulous ability for procrastination! I can sit for hours looking at other peoples lovely work and think 'I wish I could do that' and know I have the time, so why don't I just start?

Well on the last matter I did decide to make a start. White Nights has been hanging over the banister for months and I do have the machine to quilt it I just kept putting it of. I asked Mike to help me put the extra length on the studio frame on Monday and I loaded it with the top etc. Yesterday afternoon I had some time to start so off I went. AND IT FEELS GOOD!!!

Here's Ari in her 12+ foot mode with just over half the quilting done.

Now no more delay, I'm going to finish the top and sort the binding before John comes back from fishing. Maybe I will have it on the bed before New Year!

-Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Seasonal Greetings

I managed to bind and finish the MM3 table runner.  None of the photos show how sparkly the white fabric is so you will just have to imagine.

I have been playing with Ari (Ariadne is the name of the Avante 18.  Don't ask why, it just happened to be and the name of the mistress of the labyrinth is quite appropriate because of the maze like patterns we tend to quilt with).  I am becoming more confident but still a long way from wanting to tackle the big White Nights quilt for our bed.  I knew it wouldn't see this Christmas!  The JB Baby Blocks quilt is on it at the moment and I'm doing a Suzanne Early technique which has worked out quite well.

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday break and plenty of crafting.  Thank you for spending some of your time this past year reading this blog, I've enjoyed reading yours too.

I have just watched the fabulous In Action by Jan Beaney and Jean Littlejohn (Lovely ladies but the really bad manicure was a ! moment to me!) and I had Judy Coates Perez on screen last night so quite inspired.  I'm off to actually play with my sketchbooks!!


Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Can You See Clearly?

We can't here and it's such a shame.  The Lunar Eclipse was this morning between 07.00 and 08.50 and the cloud is so thick.  It's nice to know Mother Nature can do such spectacular things and then throw a spanner in the works like cloud!

I have finished wrapping and dressing and cooking and Christmas can't happen soon enough now.  Even the Sky Box is set to record all the things we will gradually watch through the year rather than all at once.

Why is it we have all these wonderful ideas of what we can make for Christmas about now when time is running out.  I've started to gather a pile of ideas, patterns, sketches and downloads of things I would like to do and I will put it somewhere where I can dip into it later next year.  One of my main projects will be a tree skirt for us!  I did one for Elsa last year but ours is still an old bought one as you can see.  When the new workroom (I can't bring myself to call it a studio!) is built it will be one of the first things to tackle.

Have a wonderful Shortest Day and may your planetary New Year begin tomorrow with a few extra moments of daytime creating!!


Saturday, 18 December 2010

One Minute Thirty

Yes it snowed, where hasn't it!  I just thought I would show you this short clip of two of the bird feeding stations in the front garden.  It's not great but they do show up better against the snow.  The garden is like this nearly all the time most days!

Just in this are Chaffinch, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Robin, Dunnock, Bramling, Sparrow, Blackbird, Starling and Blue, Coal and Great Tit.

Those missing are Pigeon and Dove, Pheasant, Song Thrush, Woodpecker and the Longtail Tits.  Already been and gone for the moment but they will be back. 

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

MM3 Almost There

The MM3 has come to an end.  I decided to do the 'with ends' option.  It seems to fit the table better and will certainly be more filling on it if we have the flaps out and in 10 seater mode!

All there is left to do now is layer and quilt which I'm am quite looking forward to doing and yes, for this Christmas!  I have some lovely metallic threads that will suit the white just right.

The show went well with the robins disappearing very fast.  I think we can quite happily say we added a little to the charity funds and had a good day too.

We are just off out to find some last minute bits for the house.  Then I'm going to have to force the issue and find the tree. My knee is playing up superbly and I'm not looking forward to crawling around up in a squished attic looking for the right boxes and my best Santa's Little Helper is thousands of miles away.  I miss her all the time but some days are harder than others.

I did send her the Christmas hanging I made below. (Please excuse the state of my DW! I will pick the threads off it soon.)  She received it yesterday and has been showing everyone she can.  Bless.  It's from the book Quilt Yourself Gorgeous by Mandy Shaw.

Now to don the armour and face the crowds!!


Wednesday, 8 December 2010

MM3 and Robins

We have made a leap forward in this weeks MM3 and the end is in sight, I think, unless Chris and Barbara are going to throw in a curve ball!  I do love these fabrics and will definitely have to make something more with them.

On Monday I went and helped hang the paintings for the exhibition.  43 great pieces of art plus my 6 that aren't actually for sale!  I think they were pleased with the bits I made to help with funds though.  Nina would like the aquarium cards framed and set up as pictures instead and I also made these robins from a pattern of Helen's from Bustle and Sew.  As they are her pattern I don't want to sell them but will ask for a charitable donation instead.  That is if there are any left, Nina keeps pinching them.


Sunday, 5 December 2010

A Finish, a Start and a Date, or Two.

Yesterday I finished this little table centre.  All the fabrics were hand dyed by Maggi at To Dream To Stitch.  I hand pieced and quilted it and it is from a pattern called Solar Eclipse that one of my ladies had done at sewing group and I admired very much.  Piecing bias curves is not as hard as it seems when it's done over paper. 16.5 inches.  It goes fab with the bowl Maggi.

I signed up to Lisa Walton's new beading class that starts in the new year at Dyed and Gone to Heaven.  I'm just OK with beading but I'm also always willing to gather new information and expand ideas!

Also the Friday Night Sew In this month has two dates.  This Friday the 10th and also the 17th of December.  I'm almost done with Christmassy things so I will hopefully be using the time to catch up on other things that have been put aside.


Friday, 3 December 2010

It's Snow Joke

Well I guess you all have your own snow stories.  We've only just had ours arrive.  I really do believe that this part of Dorset is quite often in a slightly different time line to the rest of the planet.  I won't inundate you with photos.  It's white everywhere and quite often very beautiful.  I have the Hellebores out and was going to take photos of them but they are now under  blanket of the white stuff and I'm not going to disturb them.

There is a possibility that my friend Gilly will be holding an exhibition and sale of work next week, this is weather permitting I'm sure, and she has asked if I could put in some of my quilts and bits.  Trouble is I don't sell my stuff so I have been making things that could be sold just to raise a little cash for the Royal Signals Benevolent Fund at the local camp, every penny counts. So far I have made the following.

Aquarium cards A5 size.  I took the photos after I put them in the cellophane wrappers so they are a bit shiny.

 Some quick baubles from panel fabric.  They remind me of ravioli!

And some Teabag Wallets.

I have other bits on order to make more things but whether they arrive in time is another thing. 

I did have these DVD's arrive in the post so a great time reading through them will be next on the list! 

I hope you are all staying safe and warm.