Sunday, 1 March 2015

Spring is on the way

I started this post as it was a lovely day with the sun shining even though it was cold.  Now it has turned very dark and grey and the ever present rain has made another appearance and then it even changed to snow (which is very unusual here).  Ah well we can but hope.


Spring seemed as if it had made an entrance as the wonderful crocus had started to peep it's head up along with the daffodils and even though it had been very cold in the mornings and evenings  when I was travelling to work and home again, the sun had made it's presence felt during the day and the mornings were getting brighter earlier and the evenings were getting shorter.  I will be positive (after all the flowers need the rain).

I have been catching up on reading the blogs that I follow while having a break from studying.  I am studying for the TMITI (Tax Technician) exams which take place in mid April.  At my age it is very hard to get back into the whole idea of classes and study along with trying to work, keep the house going and the most important thing (as far as everyone else is concerned) make sure that there is plenty of food in the house.  This leaves very little time for sewing but I try to take a half hour most evenings to help relax.
I've been feeling tired lately and put it down to studying and everything else it takes to keep going but have just gotten the results of my annual blood tests back and my iron levels are way down again (this is the third time in 18 months) so it's back on the iron supplements and maybe more tests.  Hopefully the supplements will give me a boost in a couple of weeks so that I can get the 50% I need to pass each of my exams.

To try to keep my mind on sewing I've signed up for two swaps, one is a Rainbow mug rug swap  which I've started on.

This was a coloured glass pattern that I decided to do as an english paper piecing project as I can manage to get a bit done during my half hour sewing in the evenings.  I'm going to make a striped rainbow back and try to get it finished this week.
The other swap is an english paper pieced small bag (around 5 inches).  I have to wait to see who my partner is and what they like before I start this one but I have some ideas bouncing around already.
Can you see a theme here? Yes you guessed it, I love english paper piecing, especially hexagons and I have several books on it.  I've signed up to follow the Milliefiori that Katja is doing as I had already purchased the book but will have to watch from the sidelines for a while.
I've also bought the Millefiori book that Quiltmania have after seeing it on several blogs and sites.  Again this will be a "to do" project.

What I have managed to do are the kalidescope blocks which I'm still working on and some prairie braid batik columns.  I enjoy these as they are nice hand sewing.



If you get a chance please check out Julie's  blog for her visit to a festival in a nearby town (she lives in Japan and writes such brilliant pieces about life, the culture and festivals there).  I love reading her blog as she takes some great photos, is very informative on the flowers that grow in her garden and around her and makes great use of very small spaces where she lives.

That's all for now.  We have a big festival coming up in a couple of weeks, St Patrick's Day (or as we call it Paddy's Day) so I am going to try to take some photos of our local parade.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend.



Sunday, 1 February 2015

Another month gone

January is now officially finished.  How did it go by so fast?
Last weekend our quilting group had two 2-day workshops with Gillian Travis.  The first one was on Townscapes and the second was on an Abstract Shape.  I couldn't take time off work so I was only able to attend the Townscapes one.  There was a lot of preparation work involved which took up most of the first day.  This is as far as I got on the two days (well it was my first attempt at free motion).

It is from a photo of the shops which used to be old warehouses in Bergen.

I was also in the Secret Santa Swap and these are some of the goodies I received from Gillian
These are some of the goodies I sent to her.


I'm busy studying so not much sewing time at the moment but maybe I might get something done during the week.
Hope you all enjoy your weekend.

Linda

Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Welcome 2015


Happy New Year to you all.

I am hoping that 2015 will be a better year.  Sadly we lost a dear friend and member of our quilting group at the end of August to cancer and another is having treatment.
I had knee surgery at the end of September to remove cartilage which I've had problems with for a good many years but which was a lot worse over the last year and it was slowing me down.  It took me longer to get over it as I had an allergic reaction to the anaesthetic and then I got the vomiting bug which took me a good week to recover from.  Thankfully I am now pain free but I will have to have a knee replacement in the next couple of years.

I didn't fulfill my promise to blog more often (bad me!!!) but I am hopeful for the next year that I will be able to.  My sewing has been put on hold for a while as I am studying for exams in April but I am doing a workshop at the end of January (will give more details later).

I hope that you all have a peaceful, healthy and happy 2015.

Best wishes.


Linda


Monday, 9 June 2014

goodies and FNWF

I've managed to make a start on the charity quilt blocks on Friday in the FNWF (Friday night with friends).  I got my fabrics together and finished one block.  Over the weekend I now have six ready.
 I was in two swaps on flickr, one was a mug rug and this is the wonderful mug rug and fabrics I received from Sandy of tangled threads.  I love that little running fox.
 the second was a fabric basket and this is the wonderful basket and goodies I received from Tiff.  The quilting on this basket was so good.
 I was also at a quilt shop with friends in Wexford (Kilbora Quilt Shop) where we made wool pincushions.  Will definitely go back again.

Hope you all had a great weekend.
 

Friday, 6 June 2014

Friday night with friends

I've just joined up in time for the FNWF (Friday night with friends) over on Cheryl's blog .  I'm going to be working on some crazy blocks which some members of my quilt group are making for a charity quilt.   We can use any fabrics we like so it will be a good way of using up scraps.  Hope you all have a great Friday night.


Friday, 2 May 2014

I actually got something done!!!!

I actually managed to get some of my goals done (a little miracle).
I finished the binding on my New York Beuaty Scrappy Quilt (which I will be using as a wall hanging).

I joined two swaps in flickr (one is for a fabric bin/basket and the other for a mug rug).
I made the fabric bin today (isn't it great having a day off from work).  My partner likes text fabrics and the colours blue, green, gray and navy.  I used a tape measure fabric for the lining.  This was really easy to make.  You'll find the tutorial on Birch Fabrics and you can make it in three different sizes (I made the small one).

 I hope to get the mug rug made on Monday (long bank holiday weekend).
I've also been working on kaleidoscope blocks.  So far I have the sections done for four blocks.  12 more to go.
 I have loved watching the Great British Sewing Bee (the second series) on the BBC and treated myself to the book which comes with patterns.  Another to go on the To Do list.
  We're making a charity quilt in my quilting group for a cancer charity (some of our members and families are going through treatment at the moment) so I need to go through my fabrics and see what yellows and greens I have.  We're making a crazy patch one.

Hope you all have a great weekend.



Sunday, 6 April 2014

bonnie scotland

I've been having a great time in Edinburgh this weekend with 7 friends and we are visiting an old schoolfriend who lives here. We've visited the castle and other sites, had great meals, a few drinks, plenty of chat, some shopping and just had a great time. Hope you all have a great weekend.




                                                                                      
Linda

Sunday, 23 March 2014

New York and other things



I had a wonderful trip to New York with my friend in February.  We were there for five days and I loved it, especially because there were so many dressmaking fabric shops and I also got to visit The City Quilter where I purchased some New York city fabric, a cushion kit, a book for using charm squares and some fat quarters.  I could have easily spent the whole day there. We visited Ellis Island which was the best $18 I ever spent.  We were there for three hours going through the exhibition and listening to the audio tour.   You can feel what it was like there for the immigrants and how frightened they must have felt waiting to see if they would gain access or not.  If you are ever in New York and you have the chance to go, please do, it is the best history lesson ever.



Inside the hall in Ellis Island.

We also visited the Empire State building at midnight.  It was very cold but the views were worth it.   We even managed to get to see Mamma Mia on Broadway (loved it).  We didn't get to see everything in those few days so I am definitely going back and I have some willing volunteers at home who want to go with me.  Maybe it will be the holiday for next year.

We had a "do what you want" workshop with my quilting group in early March.  I decided I wanted to start on making a blouse for myself.  I used New Look 6232 pattern and a tan/cream spot cotton fabric.
I have the front button facing, collar and buttons to finish it off so hope to have it to show in a couple of weeks.  I have some nice fabric for a skirt so need to get started on that as well.

I'm working on my New York beauty scrap quilt.  I just have the binding to finish so here is a work in progress photo.  I'm using a strippy fabric for the binding.   I used charm squares and some solid bright colours for the blocks and grey for the sashing. 


 
 
I've also started working on a hand pieced foundation by the yard kaleidoscope quilt.  I'm using black, some charm squares (which I got in a rainbow colour charm swap) and some of the strippy fabric left over from the binding of my New York beauty quilt.
 
 
I hope you all had a great St Patricks Day.  I'm heading off in a couple of weeks with some schoolfriends to Edinburgh for a weekend to visit a schoolfriend.  I know there is a patchwork shop in Edinburgh so I am determined to find it.
 
Enjoy the rest of the weekend and keep sewing (anyone else watching The Great British Sewing Bee, I'm shouting for my namesake Lynda).