Sometimes it feels so easy …. I’m sure you know what I mean …. those rare occasions that you have an idea and translating it into fabric and thread just flows, everything happens right the first time. It’s such a magic, wonderful feeling that for me at least, happens only rarely – usually I can be found muttering, unpicking, tweaking and re-stitching! But there was no unpicking at all while I was stitching this project – my Woodland Alphabet Quilt …
It’s destined to be a gift for some friends who have been waiting for adoption for some time. They’ve recently heard that they’ll be bringing home a little boy aged seven months in just a few weeks time. I do hope they’ll like my gift…
It’s still very much a work in progress, but I finished piecing the top late this afternoon – just some borders around the edges and it’s onto the quilting. I was inspired by the clean lines and appliqued text of the Baby Life Quilt design by V and Co that I found in the Moda Bakeshop…
I love the uncluttered feel of this quilt and wanted to try to give my Woodland Alphabet Quilt the same feeling of simplicity and space – as well as including lots of forest friends ….
I followed Vanessa Christenson’s tip of zig-zagging around my applique shapes with clear thread. All my shapes were quite simple so there wasn’t too much huffing and puffing while pivoting around corners. My favourite block is R for Rabbit (of course!) ….
Though the hedgehog and mouse are cute too. I’m considering whether to add a narrow patchwork border around all the squares before the final wider borders – if anybody has any thoughts or suggestions I’d love to hear them. This project will be included in the April issue of the Bustle & Sew eMagazine and then I’ll be wrapping it up ready to send to my friends in time for their baby boy’s arrival.
Sometimes it’s hard to decide what I’d like to blog about – when life has picked up pace and so much has been crammed into a few short days – and now is one of those times. Should I tell you about the tremendous thunderstorm we had here? The lights went out, the roof leaked and the flagstones were covered with enormous hailstones (which enchanted my furry friends when they went outside to investigate after the storm had passed)….
Or I could tell you about our wedding preparations .. Rosie and I spent a long time working on the invitations and maps on Saturday afternoon. At last they’re finished to both our satisfactions and we’re eagerly anticipating their return from the printers very soon indeed ….
Then there’s my new Woodland Alphabet Quilt. It’s destined to be a gift for friends who have just learned they’ll be bringing home a new baby boy very soon. They’ve been waiting for adoption for quite some time and so I wanted to make a special present. It’s still very much a work in progress, but here’s a quick snap of the first few blocks….
Not the best picture I’m afraid – I snapped it very quickly with my phone. But I’ll take more photographs as I go along, and the finished project will be in the April issue of the Bustle & Sew Magazine. Which sort of leads me onto my final piece of news … the March issue of the Bustle & Sew Magazine is now available in paperback form from Amazon …..
CLICK HERE to see it on Amazon.co.uk and
CLICK HERE for the magazine on Amazon.com
I’ve finished my Winter’s Comfort Quilt! And, judging by the wind, rain and darkness outside my windows tonight, not a moment too soon!
There are seven snowflakes – completely reworked from an early 20th century design by Nancy Page and ornamented with tiny mother-of-pearl buttons for just a little frosty sparkle. There are patchwork blocks …
…. a charm pack from Moda – Winter’s Lane” – a lovely soft palette of reds, blues and neutrals quilted in circles that remind me of frosty cobblestones on a winter’s evening, hurrying home from the shops, perhaps laden with Christmas parcels ….
…. and, I don’t know if you can see in the top picture, a row of tiny silver stars stitched into the dark blue sashing – to remind me of the brightness of stars on a frosty night in the depths of winter. But I won’t mind the cold outside this winter as I’ll be nice and warm snuggled into my new quilt in front of the woodburner! Oh, and there’ll be two large black furry bodies snoozing gently on the rug at my feet and a mug of cocoa to hand .. bliss!
The pattern for my Winter’s Comfort Quilt will be in the October issue of the Bustle & Sew Magazine that’s published next week.
As summer slips slowly into autumn, life here at Coombe Leigh is becoming very busy indeed. Regular activities, postponed for the summer, begin again and new ones commence. I have a new assistant here at Bustle & Sew – my friend Lisa’s daughter Emily has asked me to teach her to stitch ……
… a very serious undertaking indeed! Or so you might think from how hard she is concentrating on her hoop and needle in this picture. But actually we’re having a lot of fun – she’s so enthusiastic and full of giggles! At seven she’s old enough to start with a “real” grown up needle and floss, and here she’s beginning to stitch her first design, having carefully drawn and then traced her own rabbit and flower drawing she’s outlining the rabbit with back stitch. We then plan to add felt leaves and button flowers to the background to make a picture she can hang on her bedroom wall. I’ll be sure to show you when it’s done.
I’ve been busy with my Winter’s Comfort quilt too….
As I’ve used an old well shrunken woollen blanket for the filling, I can be very flexible with the quilting – there’s no danger at all of the filling breaking up. The snowflake panels are quite large at 12″ square, but they won’t be quilted at all, I’ve simply stitched in the ditch around them. I’ve also stitched around the patchwork panels, but have decided to fill them with free motion quilting – choosing circles and a cream thread so they’ll remind me of frosty cobblestones on a winter’s morning. Still can’t quite decide how to quilt – or indeed if to quilt the navy blue sashing – if anyone has any suggestions I’d love to hear them.
And as well as all the sewing going on, I’m busy in the kitchen too with chutneys and preserves ….
My lovely next door neighbour Julie invited me to take plums from her tree, and I made some Spicy Plum Chutney that smells delicious – a recipe for the October magazine I think. Daisy and I have been blackberrying, though we didn’t get very many – I think we are a bit early, perhaps we’ll go again in a week or so. Meanwhile though, we have enough for a lovely blackberry and apple crumble. And finally – figs from the large and rather thuggish tree at the end of my garden. I have discovered a recipe for Fig Chutney that will use quite a few – it incorporates balsamic vinegar and red onions so sounds rather nice. I’ll let you know!