Sunday, 27 June 2010

sunday stash

Wow - thank you for all the spiderweb love from last post. You make my heart sing! And have really encouraged me to get my finger pulled out and get a few more finishes underway. It feels so good to finish something and have other people tell me they love it too. Makes it all the more worthwhile.

So thank you, I really appreciate it!

I've been really slack with sunday stash lately. It's not from the lack of stash enhancements, more to do with me being busy with real life stuff and working on the next issue of Fat Quarterly (out July 27th - yikes!) The new additions to the closet shown above are by Laurie Wisbrun for Kaufman fabrics. I wasn't sure whether I'd like them at first, but in real life they are delicious. A perfect mix of colours and so vivid too. I started cutting into the purples right away to make purple blocks for my rainbow quilt and I ::LOVE:: the blocks. Seems I had the perfect fabrics in my stash after all. Result!

(in case you need to go shopping, I bought my stack from Thistle Hill fabrics on etsy)

Friday, 25 June 2010

and finally....

It took me 9 months from start to finish but it was worth it. Even worth all the moaning about what a PITA those lines were to quilt that I did to anyone who would listen (whether they wanted to or not). I feel like I'm willing to give the lines another go. Maybe even try really straight ones next time, because I quilted very random lines on the spidey and didn't mark out a single one. I wanted it to look uneven and organic. It certainly does that - some of the 'straight' lines are pretty curvy!

Honestly, I can't tell you how much I love this quilt. What makes it even more special is that I had help from my Euro Bee friends. It might be my favourite so far, you know.

So just humour me with the gratuitous photos, ok?

just one more.....


Thursday, 24 June 2010

pillow talk

I signed up for the third round of the pillow talk swap over on flickr after watching from the sidelines for the previous two rounds and becoming increasingly envious of some of the beautiful pillows I'd seen created.

My partner Corey had asked for something traditional but modern and what fits the bill more perfectly than a dresden plate?

I used my previously uncut into Heather bailey Fresh Cut stash and some Nicey Jane as well as a few other bits and bobs and actually spent a lot of the time on the quilting. Something I usually shy away from (because I'm so terribly useless at quilting anything in a complicated manner).

It turned out really well and Corey tells me she loves it too. Phew. Now I can't wait for my pillow to arrive. It's going to sit on the chair above in my bedroom in pride of place.

Monday, 21 June 2010

chores but not a chore

It's never a chore to start a quilt and this one has been gnawing away at me for a little while since I saw Megan's cat sprawled on her rainbow version. To be honest Megan's quilts do that to me anyway. They gnaw away at me and I have to blatantly copy her. I think she's the cool girl at school that I wanted to be friends with. I'd have a sneaky cigarette in the back lane with her and skip class if she let me stand with her at the bus stop.
I'm 6 blocks down. They're pretty huge blocks (started off with 6 inch squares) so it won't take long to finish this monster. Hopefully my cat will appreciate it as much as Simon. I'm thinking maybe 20 blocks in rainbow colours and mostly using up my Flea Market Fancy and Katie Jump Rope hoardings. Except purple, I'm struggling with purple (it's not featuring heavily in my stash). If anyone has any tips for that colour let me know, because I could do with the help.

Second up - quilt market chores. Except the only chore was that I wasn't there and John was. It's handy having the quilt dude as your buddy though...look what he brought me home...

Caramel Town from Lecien. I LOVE it. I don't know whether I can cut it up though. It's so cute.

Then we move on to the terrible task of visiting Harts in Santa Cruz. Oh, what a chore that was! All those bolts of fabric all over the place. the horribly nice staff that gave me gifts....

The eagle eyed amongst you may notice that there's a couple of FQs of Anna Maria Horner's bohemian on the top there. I'm not saying my friendship can be bought, but wave some out of print and hard to find much coveted fabric under my nose and I'm your new puppy.

Harts is an amazing place. Too much there, really. I couldn't cope. Since I've got home I've kicked myself for not spending more time stroking the fabrics and maybe having a little lie down amongst the bolts. They were shutting up shop though, so it was time to leave. And I was SO restrained. I bought only a few bits - and spent less than $100. Foolish, I know.
I'll have to go back, right?

These echino prints below make my heart sing. I have no idea what to do with them except love them.
They're a slightly heavier canvas than regular quilting weight, so probably perfect for bags. I think I want a quilt though (no surprises there). Although maybe I could make a bag as well, and then pop one of the organisers in that Terri makes? I think I need one of those for sure. I think everyone does.

If only all chores were as hard work as shopping for fabric.

Friday, 18 June 2010

old is new again

I was sure I had a photo of my sofa before, but I can't seem to find one. Try to picture it though - it was dark blue and gold silk, the cats had used it as a scratching post from the day it first arrived, the kids had jumped on it endlessly, thrown the pillows around the room just for fun, and it was ripped, fraying and generally beyond tatty. Oh, and one of the legs at the back had been sawn off so we could get it out of the flat it used to live in and into our house. That leg didn't do anything. It wasn't essential for the sofa to stand up properly so it had sat in a drawer for the past 6 years or so.

Every time I thought about getting it recovered I balked at the cost of upholstery fabric (granted - I was looking in Libertys mostly) because I knew the cost of just getting the job done was going to be more than the price of a small sofa. Add in 7 or 8 metres of fabric at £60 a metre and you're talking about big money.

So the poor sofa just sat in the sitting room looking very sorry for itself for a very long time. Until a couple of months ago when I had a lightbulb moment and remembered all of the home dec fabrics designers were bringing out left right and centre. A little hunt on etsy and I found an Anna Maria Horner print from the drawing room collection for less than 10 bucks a yard.

And here she is....

Actually, I'm not 100% convinced I chose the right print. The fabric looks great close up, but it's a lot less gaudy than the stuff that was on there before so it looks very neat and tidy. A little bit minimalistic compared to the rest of the house and furniture (although how an ornate gold sofa can look minimalistic I don't know). Maybe I'm just not used to the sofa looking so new, it's had bits of stuffing and cord and all sorts hanging out of it for so long. Or maybe it needs some new pillows to smoosh it all up a little. I think I'll get used to it. It is growing on me now I look at the photos, and I do love that fabric close up.

The children aren't allowed to eat, drink or play on it now.

They may even be banned from sitting on it....

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

a birthday party

Have you heard? Heather is holding a whole month of giveaways to celebrate her birthday.
This week I'm offering up one of the prizes, so if you fancy being in the draw for this stack of 10 Heather Bailey, Nicey Jane FQs skip over (before Friday, 18th June). And good luck!!!!

Monday, 14 June 2010

adventures across the pond

So we're home. If anyone has any ideas on how to deal with jet lag, please let me know. The copious amounts of caffiene I'm drinking aren't helping - I'm still walking around in a daze. I feel like I had a really heavy night on the bottle, but unless I'm a sleep-drinker I am certain no alcohol has passed my lips for a good few days. Miss G is coping ok, but the rest of us are pretty spaced out.

We had quite possibly the best trip ever. Starting in Vegas, we drove to San Diego, Anaheim (to visit Mickey and his friends at Disneyland), LA, and up along the Pacific coastline (I have never seen such amazing views - the Big Sur and the area around it is truly mind blowing) to Santa Cruz. Then back down to Vegas. San Francisco is saved for the next time, our days just ran out - but we covered a pretty awesome chunk of area considering we drove. 1500 miles or so, in all.

What did we do? In brief we.....

:: cuddled a small baby and one of us (not mentioning any names but it might well be me) was even more broody than ever

:: got a little wind swept (check out that ocean - it was blue and green and white all at the same time)

:: hung out with Mickey Mouse

:: ate burgers without buns (why, oh why does every type of bread bun have dairy in it in the US?)

:: were mesmerized by a big ginger monkey using a stick to get something out of a hole in a rock

:: sat on giant extinct cat sculptures (and got burnt by the hot metal. Note to San Diego zoo - metal + sun = hot)

:: drove many many miles along very long straight roads

:: marvelled at giant jellyfish like glass sculptures (I did, at least, the kids weren't so impressed)

:: sat on a beach in a desert watching the waves (only in Vegas!)

and then came home to rain.