Monday 29 April 2013

getting stitchy with it

So I have chosen to use pink, red and green cottons
along with a cream for the background.
Hand quilting for me is on a par with hand piecing.
There are no fixed rules,
which can be confusing,
with so much choice..
I am toying with the idea of quilting 
petal shapes within the white 
like a daisy with a hex centre..
I might make a trial run to see if I like it.

Any guesses to which backing I went with?

Thursday 25 April 2013

garden chit chat

 Let this be the first of many garden chit chats on the blog!
As is now usual with me
I have had my 360 degree spin of horror moment in the garden.
The moment when I
and then just crack on with it!
I have become accustomed to it now, so lets put that one to bed
(for another year)
and look at the pretty things.
The above are snakes head fritillarys
a gift from a friend,
I wasnt sure they would make it through the winter
but they did!
That said I have lost a number of plants this year
the first being ALL of my lupins
see here for last years show.
Our garden is on clay
so when it rains the beds become lakes..
I guess lupins can only take so much.
Also lost are all my echinacea, a euphorbia, a penstemon and 
quite possibly my catmint.
Thank goodness for the selfsowns!

 A year on from our pond dig and things are getting established
though I have decided to let this area become ungardened  wild.

Bird Cam
Ever felt like you were being watched?
This is how I do it
weeding that is..
keep it real x

Monday 22 April 2013

macaroon monday

Wish they were macaroons..
however they are my sweet new perle cottons!
You may think ooh now they're Clare colours,
but no
this was an online bundle
colours already selected.
Totally getting this hand quilting lark
(think John Travolta singing Summer Nights)
 the possibilities are endless!
Add them to my modest yet growing cotton stash
and I can't help thinking they remind me of something....?

Sunday 21 April 2013

making it work

 Well this took me back to my technical drawing classes!
Not as easy to reproduce as it was to draw willy nilly.
 After taping some A4 sheets together I strolled back and forth with my ruler in hand.
It was actually quite fun
a bit like dot to dot!
 I do love our new space...
I am in between the radio, the kettle and the toilet
why go any where else?
This is how far I got.
I numbered the templates on the back 
and remembered to take a photo
to help me assemble correctly!
I'm thinking now that the orange should be red,
I used orange in the painting, but the tone is a lot darker 
than this orange I other news
still waiting on some perle cotton 
so I can get on with 
some hand quilting.....hurry up already!

Wednesday 17 April 2013

perfectly pastel...

 Last year the house and the garden both went through changes.
A pond in the garden and an extension on the house.
Needless to say the latter was by far the most stressful.
With the days now getting longer and warmer
we are hanging out more often in the new bit.
We still have flooring, skirting, door frames and a patio to do,
but we're getting there.
Which leads me to our latest house guest
my our welsh dresser.
 I quite literally stumbled upon this dresser in my local town
I couldn't quite believe it..
if you knew my town you'd know that
 poundland* is the very heart of the community.
So you can imagine my surprise
when I found Junk and Disorderly.
I had been scouring websites trying to find one to do up
but I wanted a wood dresser
and as painted furniture is the in thing
I was finding it hard.
The lady seller had rubbed it down herself
she said it took 2 weeks.
Normally I would rather do the work and pay less,
but sometimes when somethings right
you should just go for it.
That said I did haggle her down some!
With these hard times I think we need to support 
our high street shops and the people trying to make a living.
And besides I wouldn't be sharing these photos with you now
had I not fallen in love...
 I am a girl who's love affair with old things runs deep,
and have been collecting quirky objects for many a year
(and yes more loft delving)
Having said that my husband picked up some great things
from carboot sells back in the day when deco mirrors cost a pound.
In fact the ice creams and the bread bin are his.
 A dtawer for my decadent!

 This charming lady came from the loft
I've had her years
she is utterly broken
but I cant throw her away.
So now I have a place for everything and everything in place.
Really every girl should have one!
And breathe....

*nothing wrong with poundland I shop there too!

Sunday 14 April 2013

Le Challenge ~ Geometrics

 Sometimes all you need is a little nudge
to set you off.
 It's been way too long since I've picked up a paint brush and oils.
I had forgotten how much I LOVE it!
 I have had this painting in my head for awhile
and had the canvas for even longer.
I originally had an idea for an even scrappier style painting,
that can wait.
So when Lucy and Nat came up with their 
I knew what I wanted to do.
I drew a somewhat random pattern
with a pencil and ruler.
The basis for the colour palette was 
my summer of love quilt
(yep still rolling that out)
Although the colours are not all faithful to the quilt
the values remain well balanced.
 So well balanced in fact I'm turning it into a mini.
I mean it would be rude not too right?
English Paper Pieced but of course!
So there we are.
The hardest part with painting is knowing when to stop.
For now I'm calling it Love/Hate.
If I was having a crit I'd have to come up with something meaningful as to why.
Well the love part comes from my quilt
 and the hate because it has a somewhat angst kind of feeling.
Either way I have a feeling this will be the first of many
paintings of quilts and quilts of paintings!

Friday 12 April 2013

a quick quilting quandary

Can I make a confession?
I really feel like I don't know what I'm doing
most of the time!
And when it comes to quilting
I'm lost.
I read my quilting books and all your blogs for inspiration,
I just wish it came naturally to me.
With my wadding purchased from John Lewis
(80% cotton 20% polyester)
I've reached that dilemma.
I was thinking about using the pink for the backing
and the stripe for the binding...
But maybe the other way round?
Or not at all?
I'm definitely going with some hand quilting,
possibly a blender on the hexagons
and some more colourful stitching on the stars...
decisions decisions!

Wednesday 10 April 2013

sew solid crew

Okay so I can't share my latest creation until Monday
but I can share my fabrics for my next mini.
I wonder what I could be up to?
In other news...whilst lingering around John Lewis fabric department
pondering on their wadding
I met an older lady who quilts.
Actually it was the presewn patchwork fabric that we were both tutting at
that got us talking.
She told me about the Japanese folding technique,
I think its a bit like making cathedral windows.

they have flea market fancy in John Lewis
and no I was good.
I have wadding...we all know what that means!
I'm using cheap cotton
remember my mantra!
So the moral?
Time spent lingering over fabric is NEVER wasted.

Tuesday 9 April 2013

Molly's Den

 I know it's hard to believe
but sometimes I do leave the house.
You see I heard along the grapevine
of a new vintage warehouse local to me
called Molly's Den...
not to be confused with Molly Flanders.
Both are equally fine places to visit
except the latter being of the virtual kind of course.
 Remember our nest of tables?
Well they were purchased at MD
and at a very reasonable price too.

 We have been crying out for a place like this.
The sort of place that turns my eyes into jolly ranchers...
and my brain into jam.
 They have a great mix of old and new, vintage and retro.
I'm now wondering if I could sell my vintage inspired quilts there...
If you live near Bournemouth and fancy a visit
check out their facebook page for more info and pics..
Now I'm off to write a shopping list for my next visit
which can't come soon enough!

Friday 5 April 2013

le sneaky peek

Thanks for all your lovely comments regarding my painting,
I know how single minded we get in the quilting world
so I really value your support.
This is my Le Challenge entry
still in progress.
It's very big and very bright
just what we need with our current climate.
I'm thinking wouldnt this make an awesome mini quilt?

Wednesday 3 April 2013

do you mind if I paint?

 You may think that quilting is my first love?
But for me it's always been (in a non pretentious way) about art.
If you ask me where my favourite place to hangout is...
I may give you a handful of answers
a garden centre..a fabric shop..portobello antique fair
but really my number one favourite place
is in an art gallery.
There's nothing more inspiring than a whitewashed wall
splashed with vibrant canvases.
Or dark walls with a moody oil or two.
My biggest regret in life is rebelling against 
my art college student life..
and the fact that I never did go back to study..
something about having a life of my own,
with no rules.
I was taught that to create art
there must always be thought behind it,
something that appalled the 17 year old me.
But now that I'm older and wiser
I totally agree.
Don't get me wrong I'm not going all artsy on you,
I'm just realising how my art college years have 
shaped the way I quilt and why I have to be different,
and to show my working out.
Just like quilts I have had paintings floating about in my head.
So when this months Le Challenge theme was announced
as geometric
I knew I had to crack on.
My first attempt in oils 
I'm calling severence.
 Having the book;
  Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf (thanks Lisa)
 fall apart as I read it
I knew I wanted to recycle it.
I feel very in tune with Virginia Woolf
and her fractious view of high society and
the continuous present.

This is just a start
not my le challenge entry
 I have bigger fish to fry...

Monday 1 April 2013

dog tagged

For those who can read between my lines...
I don't have a dog,
though maybe one day,
so for now virtual dogs will have to do.
My favourite right now would have to be the handsome scarf wearing Duke
I'm pleased to announce that my little giveaway mini
has found it's home in the US
as has this label.
All handstitched Kris!