A birthday and some jimjams

Good morning, sleepy-head, it's your birthday! 


Happy sixteenth miss Daisy!

 One of the downsides of being an oldie is that she feels the cold, so back in November I decided to make her a couple of sets of pyjamas. I used this pattern:


I made view A, size large, using some cotton lycra jersey and rib knit that I bought from Backstitch. It was probably the most peculiar dressmaking project I have ever tackled, the end result looks like this:


Daisy took them for a spin around the back garden to check the fit...


...before putting them into "action"!


Sweet dreams little dog :)

Quilts for Siblings Together 2017

I completed two quilts for Siblings Together last year, Greenfields and Jewel Box, which were sent off at the beginning of June in time for gifting at the summer camps.

The Greenfields quilt top (previously seen here) was paired with an orange polkadot backing and jade green binding. I machine quilted it with a simple grid of horizontal and vertical lines.



Finished size 160 x 195cm. Completed 23/03/2017.

April was my month to request blocks in the Siblings Together Bee 2. I asked for Jewel Box blocks from this pattern using bright prints and a white background. This was my sample block:


...and the finished quilt:


You can probably see it was a bit of a windy day for photography! This one has a blue polkadot backing and a Kaffe Fassett vintage bead stripe for the binding. I machine quilted it outlining the diamond shapes formed wherever four half square triangles meet.

Finished size 160 x 200cm. Completed 20/05/2017.


I previously showed some of the blocks I made for other members of the bee in this post. The "bee year" runs from September to September and I have decided not to rejoin this time around, as I was struggling a bit for time and strangely fabric (no shortage of that as such, just that I never seemed to have the right colours/prints!).

So in the interests of completeness here are the bee blocks I made for 2016/17:



















Quite a variety! I learnt that I struggle with the concepts of "wonky" and "low volume". I think the daisies and butterflies were the most fun to make!

Ribbon quilt

I made a (small) quilt entirely from leftovers in the space of a week. Seems unlikely I know, seeing as how I am usually the queen of procrastination!


Last week when I was putting clean quilts out for the dog I noticed that one of her old favourites is in a sorry state, the fabric has worn so thin that there are small holes in several places :(

What is a quilter to do? Why, get to it and make another of course!

The starting point was this pile of half square triangle units which were cut out with great enthusiasm back in 2009.


They were destined for the double pinwheel quilt (in this book) but we upgraded from a standard double bed to a kingsize when I had barely started with the piecing. Because the design was set on point, I could not come up with a way of making the quilt bigger without fundamentally changing the design, so the whole project was shamefully abandoned! I did use a bunch of finished pinwheel blocks for Soy Amado last year but the rest got stuffed back in the bag from whence they came.


I decided to use a free pattern by Melissa of 100 billion stars as my triangles were the right size and were (mainly) of two contrasting colour groups.

This is what I started out with:


With the addition of a few extra bits and bobs,  I ended up with this:


The backing was pieced together from a couple of offcuts from larger quilts and the binding was salvaged from the scrap box (I had removed it from something else as it was too dark, but it was just perfect for this!).


It turned out about 36.5" square, and is ditch stitched along all seamlines using red thread. I think the recipient is quite happy with it!


Greenfields quilt top

Hello there! I can't believe how quickly time is flying by, 20th of February already and this is my first blog post of the year!

I have decided that 2017 is the year I am going to attempt to face up to the scrap "situation" and to that end I am going to try to link up with Nicky and Leanne for Scraptastic Tuesday each month (yes I know I missed January altogether and that I am pretty close to the deadline for February,  but I will try harder!).

I started off by sorting out the rattiest, stringiest bits from the tangled scrap boxes (i.e. the least appealing bits) and found a good pattern in Kathy Doughty's "Making Quilts" book which looked like it would use a lot of scraps!

So this is the completed top of my "Greenfields" quilt.


It took me from 2nd of January until the 16th of February to complete,  I think that there are a lot of pieces in there, but it doesn't seem to have made much of a difference to the scrap "situation"! It was a good opportunity to use up bobbins with weird coloured thread, and half empty one's too.


This will be heading off to Siblings Together when it is finished. I have just ordered some backing fabric for it, so I can get it quilted in the next few weeks.

Linking up with Nicky and Leanne for Scraptastic Tuesday, just in the nick of time!

Scraptastic Tuesday

I go round in circles

Miracle of miracles! I actually finished the giant dahlia! The final stitch on the binding went in on Christmas Day.


This first appeared on my quarter four finish along list LAST year, it was not particularly long in the making, but I did spend an inordinately long time dithering about which fabric to use for the centre and then almost as long trying to make up my mind about the quilting.

The pattern I used is by Sondra of She's Got Mojo and can be found here.

I used Kaffe Fassett shot cottons in various oranges, pinks and purples and eventually chose a nice bright golden yellow for the centre. The bias binding is KF awning stripe which is long since discontinued and has been waiting patiently in my stash for the last 10 years (I KNEW it would make a great binding for something!).

The backing is pretty too...


... bottom of the pile.

It finshed up at 56 inches in diameter,  just right for sofa snuggling! 

This will, I think, be the final finish I can manage from my quarter four finish along list

Happy new year to you! 

Pois versus rayures

Or polka dots versus stripes!


This lovely design is by Fabienne Chabrolin and was published in Quiltmania No.89 May/June 2012. She has produced loads of other great variations of this design too, take a look at this flickr album.

My version is fairly close to the original design, using mainly Kaffe Fassett stripes, shot cottons and polka dots plus a few other prints.


The ellipses are machine appliqu├ęd using white thread and blanket stitch. I had a lot of fun putting together colour combinations and had a hard time NOT making them all look like fried eggs!

I deviated from the pattern when it came to the quilting, keeping it simple! (You can see the quilting on the original version here)

This little quilt finished at 43.5 inches square, and I am very glad I finally got around to making it!

Yep, this was also on my finish along list at the start of the quarter :)

Friendship braid quilt resurrected

I seem to have a bit of a back log of quilts to share, so please bear with me whilst I endeavour to catch up!


It took a bit of thinking about but I managed to turn these pieces...


...into a quilt...


Considering I started with a full jelly roll it was a bit of a struggle to reach this size (about 37 in. long x 40 in. wide). I originally purchased this fabric (Arcadia by Sanae for Moda) a little shop in Narberth (Pembrokeshire) when we were on holiday in 2009!

I made a friendship braid quilt top using the pattern in this book, but later cut it up before it ever became a quilt. I can't remember how or why I came to destroy a fininshed quilt top, but what I do know is that the remains have been sitting in my box of scraps making me feel guilty ever since. I must have had some kind of plan, as some of the fabric had been unpicked and cut into 2.5 inch squares!

Anyway, with the addition of a few extra pieces and some sashing, we now have a quilt. The backing is the animal fabric you can see in the top photo, and I quilted in a staggered zig-zag pattern across the quilt.

This can now be ticked off my finish along list, hooray! 

Portfolio case for sewing supplies

Entirely made from scraps...


(The triangles are from Swoon, the red strips from Amish with a twist, and the black dots are left over binding from dog gone cute)

The pattern for this case is by Kerry and can be found as a free tutorial here.


It was fun to make, quite time consuming with the patchwork outer, but would be almost as cute (and much quicker to put together) if you used a single fabric for the outside.

It holds all of my miscellaneous sewing paraphernalia...


...as you can see!

I realised right at the end when I was trying to attach a too wide zipper tab, that the zip I used has a narrower tape than the one Kerry used, which means my case is not quite as three dimensional as it should be. I am guessing now that this is why a separating zip is specified in the pattern, maybe they are normally wider. Anyway I just used what I had on hand, but that's something to bear in mind if you want to fit some bulkier things into your finished case.

I am pleased with my sewing portfolio and happy to be able to claim another finish along finish!

All cushions great and small

Well I am still here and still crafting, it has been hard to find enough daylight to take halfway decent photos over the last couple of months (you know, go to work in the gloom, come home in the dark, rain or fog on your day off!). Today is quite bright, so I am going to attempt a bit of a catch-up.

Here are some cushions I made to go with the tee-pee:


You can probably see they are very simple envelope-backed covers to fit 18 inch cushions. I cut the fronts 18 x 18 inches and the backs 18 x 13 inches. I did a double fold 1 inch hem on the back pieces and stitched them together using a 1/2 inch seam allowance. I just finished the seams with my pinking shears. A nice quick finish from my quarter four finish along list.

So that covers the small cushions, now here is the great...


Isn't it fab! I can't take the credit though. This started out life as a mini quilt from the Brit Quilt swap in 2012. My partner totally nailed it and I loved the quilt so much, but at 24 inches it was an awkward size to accommodate on the wall. It had a perfect little nook in the hallway at first but had to come down to make way for a new coat rack. It then languished in a drawer for a while,  I felt bad every time I saw it there. So spool forward to October this year when Alexander asked me if I could make him a REALLY BIG cushion... that sparked a light bulb moment which led to the conversion of quilt to cushion cover.


All I had to do was make a zippered back (following my favourite tutorial). I then unpicked the hand stitching on the back of the quilt to free the edge of the binding, attached the new back by machine, and stitched the binding back down by hand. I bought an enormous squishy 26 inch inner so that it would be nice and plump!

Now we can enjoy this beautiful piece every day.