17/02/2017 § 2 Comments
signs of Spring …
back yard (major) tidy-up …
and now …
lots of fun and hard work! I rediscovered a fair few muscles that haven’t been used for a very long time. There’s just the paving stones to set and some gravel to put down now.
On my design wall this week is …
a patchwork of solid diamonds. Rather a departure for me, as I like working with patterns but needed to get ‘solids’ out of my head. There’s a border to add and then it will be quilted with simple diagonals. There are already plans for the next one which has just been started, and is a mixture of solids & patterns so we’ll see which turns out best – maybe next week.
In other news, Flora Puddleduck isn’t very well. She’s on medication now and I’m hoping that she’ll soon recover. I really miss her waddling all around, following me up and down the garden and quacking every time she hears me.
She’s quite sorry for herself, as you can see. Fingers crossed for a quick recovery.
Have a lovely weekend
Linking up with Finish it up Friday
11/02/2017 § 2 Comments
I gave a presentation to a Quilt Group at their annual gathering. When I arrived, there was an air of quiet concentration as the morning workshop session was still underway. Everyone was creating either a small bag or glasses case. I was the afternoon speaker and had entitled my talk ‘Patchwork & Quilting – my style’.
I was in the company of some extremely accomplished and experienced quilters (about 70 or so in number) and felt little trepidatious but there were LOADS of questions at the end and some lovely comments too. I did enjoy it and everyone was chatting along which was brilliant.
Here are some photos of my favourite quilts that were included in my talk …
Stories of each quilt were told – about the people they were made for and the people who had commissioned them, about the themes and colours that inspire me. What a fun day! I’m hoping to meet up with some of the participants again at my workshops.
Snow flurries ensured everyone had an eye on the weather and my final slide seemed to capture the mood …
Enjoy the rest of the weekend – and snuggle up under your quilts to keep warm!
linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts
03/02/2017 § 9 Comments
I went, I watched and I came home! Have you been to see the latest Hollywood blockbuster? As I walked out of the cinema I said to my daughter, without any particular enthusiasm “It was a very pretty movie”! Now, a few days later, I can’t remember anything about it other than that there were SO many close up shots – of what, I can’t remember! Pretty actors, pretty music, pretty colours – that was about it for me. Maybe I was missing something?
By a strange coincidence, I have included lots of ‘piano keys’ in my latest quilt and it’s VERY JAZZY (maybe my subconscious has been influenced after all) – what do you think?
Here it was this morning, pieced and hanging over the studio balcony. Looks a bit like stained glass! And now, I’ve started quilting in a simple grid which is time-consuming …
It looks a bit wonky, hanging up on my design line here in the studio but I think it’ll work out OK when the quilting is all done and the binding added. Bright orange for the binding – don’t you think?
I’d quite like to call this quilt La La Land but guess that brand has been well and truly claimed!
It’s dull, raining and generally very dreary here today so I’m hoping it brightens up over the weekend. If not, then I’ll be doing more patchwork – happy days!
20/01/2017 § 10 Comments
Let’s start with the gym …
I’m not a gym-bunny! I hate gyms!! I don’t go to the gym – did try it a couple of times, but hated it – all of it.
So when I spied through the winter trees an outdoor gym about half a mile from home, why did I suddenly feel excited? I did – truly – feel excited. I love being outdoors, it must come from my upbringing in the country in west Wales – I was outdoors from dawn till dusk – school really did get in the way! Could an outdoor gym be the answer to my need to ‘up the exercise’? Well I think maybe it could. This morning, rather tentatively, my friend and I walked up to the playing field and were delighted to find that the equipment was in the sunshine so last night’s hard frost had melted. We had huge fun for half an hour, trying out all the different pieces of equipment, chatting and laughing. Our plan is to pop along a few times a week and see what (if any) difference it makes. Even if the results aren’t noticeable, I’m sure it will be good for us. What a great idea this is – everything is free and working well.
Quilt finishes …
Summer in the Park is all finished. I quilted with generously spaced diagonal lines so the quilt drapes beautifully and added a pink rose border. This is such a fun method of patchworking and I’m teaching a workshop here at my new studio all about this style of patchwork. I’m aiming to make another couple of quilts too, as there are many variations when piecing the blocks that give very different effects.
The 2nd quilt finish is a commission and I’m calling this quilt Frosty Foxy although it will actually have the new baby’s name embroidered on it. He arrived during the early hours of an extremely cold and frosty morning, and as the family live in the countryside, the baby’s auntie who commissioned the quilt, thought it would be good to have some reference to the day of his birth. I chose cool colours with pops of orange to compliment the crisp blues.
I have a quilt kit present almost cut out to send to my blogging friend in the USA and another quilt that’s in the final stages of piecing. Patchwork is such a fun hobby – endless variations and designs to play with – and all the colours under the sun!
Have a great weekend. The weather here is glorious at the moment – hard, frosty nights but wonderfully sunny days – bright blue skies without a cloud to be seen.
13/01/2017 § 3 Comments
Gypsy Wife is proving to be a challenge …
I’ve been quite enjoying this type of patchwork that is so different from my usual style. I am loving the fun of putting different colours together and how they make these blocks work (or not). Some didn’t work out quite as planned so will be redone – I HATE redoing anything!
My favourites so far …
I’m hoping to have it pieced in a month – too much of a challenge? Well, maybe!
Breakfast each day for the last week has been colourful – starting with green, then various shades of orangey gold and yesterday pink. The blender-thing is doing its stuff and I have to admit to enjoying the orangey/pinky drinks more than the green – maybe it’s the sweeter flavour from mango, raspberries & blueberries as opposed to cucumber & kale!
In addition to colourful breakfasts, yesterday just as it was getting dark, the rain gave way to a brief spell of snow and for a very short time the brown winter garden took on that magical cloak of white. It was all too fleeting-a shower and then it froze so this morning was crisp, to say the least. The girls enjoyed a long walk in the woods yesterday, just before it started to rain …
and Flora was very cuddly in this morning’s chill – she’s such a sweet character.
I think that’s my first published ‘selfie’ – a bit of a challenge when cuddling a duck with one arm and trying to hold the camera and press the dot with the other!
I treated myself to a large jug to brighten up a corner of the lounge. I love handmade Mary Rose Young pottery and have quite a few pieces but it’s out of my budget these days, so I was pleased to find this ‘designed by MRY’ jug that is perfect – gorgeous colours …
Oh – I almost forgot – more orange – I made marmalade –
12 jars of Christmas Spiced Marmalade (which may not last than long)
and 12 jars of Dark Ginger Marmalade – my favourite!
Have a lovely weekend and stay warm.
06/01/2017 § 6 Comments
When I said that colours keep me happy, I didn’t think it would extend to breakfast!
Yesterday I treated myself to a ‘nutrition blender’ and this morning, my breakfast was green – and surprisingly quite delicious. As you may know if you’re a regular visitor here, I can’t do recipes, so I gathered together a heap of fruit and some curly kale, added some water and whizzed. The result was refreshing and as I’d added a spoonful of oatbran, satisfyingly filling too. Is it a fad? Well, maybe but I do use all of my kitchen appliances regularly and hope that this one will be a useful addition to the range.
Quilt finishes this week …
A vivacious half-square triangle quilt for my daughter. It’s certainly colourful and will keep her very warm when she returns from her travels in SE Asia. She loves bright colours too and she sent me this wonderful photo yesterday …
The 2nd finish of the week goes to a small quilt with hand-pieced hexi’s – Grandmother’s Flower Garden …
I loved spending the quiet evenings throughout the festive season, watching favourite films and hand-piecing all those hexagons together, using lots of offcuts from C’s quilt. I haven’t done patchwork like that for a very long time indeed! The result is very pretty and will be a sample piece for one of my workshops.
On Christmas day, I opened two lovely patchwork book presents that are wonderful and inspiring so, whilst in the creative groove I promptly went online and treated myself to a quilt pattern …
Not sure when I’ll fit this in though it may be a whole year-long project. It’ll definitely be a keeper!!!
How’s the first week of the New Year been for you? I’ve loved putting up my new calendars and generally having a bit of a tidy up around the place. A vase of tulips in the kitchen has paved the pathway to Spring, which I’m sure will be upon us in no time.
01/01/2017 § Leave a comment
my 2017 motto
COLOURS KEEP ME HAPPY
I like to have a thought for the year and they seem to flow from one year to the next in no particular order. Here’s why I chose this one for 2017 …
Last year was a colourful year in many ways. Apart from the joy of seeing the children find new challenges in their colourful lives and sharing their excitement, my own life at home has been gently taking shape with huge progress being made throughout the house.
At last, and with only a few weeks before the end of the year, the final room was decorated and I was able to introduce some colour …
And what a delightful addition this garden room is to our family home. It’s a studio and workroom, a warm outdoor space for escape from the house, a room for reflection and creativity…
It’s still a work in progress, but I wanted a calm space so have introduced some soft blue shades and there’s still more furniture painting to do! I spent a few days ‘camped out’ in here with the collies, whilst the lounge and bathroom were being decorated. It was fun and I was busy colouring up some painted furniture …
Did I mention the bathroom? It’s been pink, white, blue and a few other colours over the years, but never Urban Obsession…
How could I resist? Being bold in the bathroom!!!
So, colour makes me happy and I hope to introduce others to the fun they can have bringing colour into their patchwork quilts when my workshops start in the Spring.
Last year I completed 40 quilts – can hardly believe that! All of them colourful and hopefully bringing as much happiness to those who now own them, as they did to me whilst creating them.
Happy New Year
Blwyddyn Newydd Dda