Saturday, 31 December 2011

Hello 2012

Blimey it's New Years Eve! I can't believe how fast this year has gone, can you?

2011 was a pretty good year for me both personally and in terms of creative production and I intend to make 2012 even more so.

Here's a mosaic of my favourite makes of 2011

There are still 3 WIPs that I need to finish before the end of January and then it is onto pastures new! 

I've decided not to set myself any resolutions as such for 2012 as having a baby due in March I don't want to put too much pressure on myself. I'm most certainly going to be making more quilts from my stash fabrics and I will definitely be doing more knitting and crochet!!

Finally one last surprise happened for us yesterday when we went for a 3D scan of our baby - it appears baby Honey is indeed baby Hunter!!! We were told at our 20wk NHS scan that the baby was a girl, good job we treated ourselves and splashed out on a private 3D scan as the baby is definitely a boy, we have photographic evidence of his wedding tackle so to speak!!!

I was very reassured by the scan as it showed he's doing great and is already 2.5lb at 28wks!! I'm having another private scan at 35wk as Hunter is currently breech and I want to check he's got himself into the correct position for the birth!

So this is me saying farewell to 2011 and welcoming in 2012 with open arms!

I hope you and yours have a really lovely New Year and may 2012 be happy, peaceful and prosperous wherever you are.


Monday, 19 December 2011

sewing up a xmas frenzy!

What a lot I've got to show you today - a veritable feast of handmade loveliness for your eyes!!

First up are my goodies that I received from the lovely Brioni on Friday. Really I should have posted about these over the weekend but I was ground to a halt with a nasty head cold that left me asleep on the sofa for the best part of the weekend!! Now I'm feeling a bit better I've got lots to catch up on!

If you're a regular reader you'll know that myself, Lynne, Mandy, Katy & Brioni have regular sew-ups where we chat, chat, eat, laugh, oh and sew (sometimes), it's like our own mini sewing guild and I love it!! Anyhow we decided to do a Secret Santa for our last meeting of 2011 and so we got Tacha to decide who we were all gifting to, I got Mandy to give to and Brioni to receive from!! Woop Woop!! 

Here's the hoop bag I made for Mandy, it was filled with an embroidery hoop, threads and pattern, as well as chocolates!

I was so excited to get Brioni as her work is amazing and scares me quite frankly, she's one of those people who loves intricate complicated quilts that are just so far out of my league right now, I can but wish! Anyway here's the loot I received from her.

I got a thread catcher which is something I've been wanting for yonks! I actually nearly pee'd myself when I opened it!! A very cute hearts fob that will hang in my sewing room, a crochet set and some yummy chocolate! Brioni nailed it with this lot let me tell you, she remembered my ranting about 'needing' a cute thread catcher and she remembered a random conversation we had ages ago about me wanting to develop my crochet skills - that's a good friend for you isn't it?

Anyhow I'm in super sewing mode now to catch up on my essential Christmas sewing that I still need to do. I whipped up these two cute lined drawstring bags that will be filled with goodies before been gifted at the weekend.

And I'm well on my way with an iPad case for 'Little Miss H'.

Here's a cute sewing jar I picked up as a gift over the weekend and a really cute drawstring bag that Katy made for 'Little Miss H'to store all her hair stuff in!!

Speak soon and hope all your sewing plans are coming together in time for the big day!!

Monday, 12 December 2011

handmade christmas

I love handmade presents and I try to include some each festive season. Now that doesn't always mean I make everything myself, I like to support other crafty folk too and buy their wares to give as presents!

Something that is becoming a bit of a tradition in our house is the giving of Linen Cat mice to 'Master M' and 'Little Miss H'. Remember these from last year?

Well this year Beth has surpassed herself and designed these beauties, I absolutely adore them and know my kids will too! 

I also bought these three baking kits from a designer children's wear shop local to me. They have been hand made and were a snip at only £14 each, filled with a handmade apron, bun cases, baking utensils and a cookie cutter. Perfect for my 2 little nephews and niece!

I've also bought cute little handmade sewing kits as stocking fillers for my two. 

I got the idea from Louise who blogs at Sew Scrumptious, she did a post a couple of weeks ago on stocking fillers which is excellent, you must go read it!
Finally yesterday I made another pair of Anna Maria Horner's Quick Change Trousers from her book, Handmade Beginnings. These are a gift for my friend Kyleigh's baby girl, Nella.

Now I'll be sewing up some more gifts this next few days as well as receiving some more handmade goodies in the post - hopefully! Does Christmas post scare you like it scares me??? 

Friday, 9 December 2011

holidays are coming...

I seem to be disappearing under a pile of Christmas crafting just now!! Which is all well and good as it's great to try and give handmade gifts isn't it?? I'm just not that good at recording what the heck I've been up to on this little old blog of mine!!!

So in no particular order here are the goodies made so far:

Mini coin purses in Melody Miller fabric. I used this bakeshop tutorial for these cuties and they came together really easily and most important quickly!

A couple of Grinch cushions/pillows (depends which side of the pond you live I suppose!) These are personalised for 'Master M' and 'Little Miss H' who both love the Grinch enormously. I'm just waiting on delivery of some plain Christmas red fabric so I can bind them. The Fat Quarter stack I used to make these is lovely warm flannel so these are cosy cushions for sure!

Speaking of flannel I've also made up a mahoosive flannel quilt top from Anna Maria Horner Loulouthi flannels. You may recognise the pattern as I blatantly stole/borrowed from Katy whose quilt is here! 

Anyhow I was going to make a simple patchwork squares top and she said 'No No No' have a go at a turning twenty block, it's so easy and I guarantee it'll be faster than squares to piece. Well been the instant gratification kinda girl I am I said 'Ok' and I swear this huge quilt was cut in approx 2 hrs and pieced in a morning. No joke. I'm sending this one out to the longarm quilter as it's way too big for me to quilt so I'll show it again when it comes home.

I've also finished piecing another smaller quilt top using at last my Sherbet Pips by Aneela. I've followed the 'Confetti' pattern from Fat Quarterly Issue 5 but added my own twist!! I've taken a section of the stacked coins out and inserted a piece of coordinating Bella Solids Grey on which I am going to embroider the girl on a swing pattern, again from Aneela. This is proving harder than I anticipated with not much light to allow me to transfer the pattern!! 

So that's it for today and I promise I'll post again soon with more Christmas makes!

Saturday, 19 November 2011

handmade lovelies

Just a quick post to show you some of the lovely hand crafted goodies I have bought of late!

First up is Cupcakes for Clara. I can't begin to tell you how impressed I am with Laura's customer service. I ordered myself some cute post it notes and when doing so noticed the fab paper dolls Laura has created. Thinking they would be an ideal stocking filler for 'Little Miss H', I contacted Laura to see if she could print them a bigger size as Holly's fine motor skills are quite poor, I figured a bigger doll and clothes would be easier for her to manipulate.

My wish was Laura's command and within a week we received these beauties and a little cardboard box for 'Little Miss H' to store them in. Perfect. 
The packaging Laura has devised is brilliant, I love excellent packaging don't you? 
Secondly I ordered a print from my lovely friend Kristy who is endlessly raising money for Royal Manchester Children's Hospital. They nursed one of her daughters back to health earlier this year when she suffered a life threatening bowel problem - very scary, trust me. 
The print is so retro and funky I love it! I'm going to frame it and hang it in the kitchen, when the hubs has finally finished painting it of course!! If you'd like a print of your own (it comes in 2 colourways and 2 sizes) just contact Kristy via Twitter or her blog. It'll be the best £10 you spent promise!

We also got this fab zipped pouch for a stocking filler for 'Master M' from the lovely FionaT over on Folksy. Her free motion embroidery of Ninja's and Zombies really should be admired don't you think?? Perfect for my own little Ninja warrior!!
Finally I got surprise mail yesterday when this little lot plopped through the letterbox.
Yes you got it its a package of the yet to be released latest fabric line from Aneela Hoey 'Walk In The Woods', sent to me by Aneela herself. I nearly wet myself.

Monday, 14 November 2011

whizzing through the wip's

I feel like I've achieved quite a bit this last few days! 

I've completed Ethan's baby quilt for a start. I've finished sewing up and blocking my too small for me now tank top!!!

I've made great progress on the Birdie BOM quilt that I started at the beginning of the year!! I'd only completed 2 blocks but this week I completed another 2 and my target is 2 per week as I want to gift the finished quilt to my Mother-In-Law for her Christmas present. Here are the 2 blocks I completed.

I've also made a pair of Anna Maria Horner's quick change trousers from her book Handmade Beginning's. These are a gift for a friend and I have another pair to make this week too for another friend - it's all good practice for when I start making them for my baby!!

I've also made a start on a quick quilt for our sofa, it's John's Confetti Quilt from Issue 5 of Fat Quarterly. Like John I'm using my stash of Sherbet Pips for the quilt - perfect for the wintertime!

I've also sewn up my knitted tank top and blocked it, it just needs the last few ends weaving in now which is something I hate doing!!

And finally for today 'Little Miss H' wanted a picture of her on the blog in all her dirty faced Saturday morning glory!! Look at that dried up chocolate milkshake.....really I do wash her. Sometimes!

Stripey Love

Ta Dah! It's another quilt finish - get me!!

This time it's a baby quilt for my friend's 5 month old baby boy, Ethan.

I decided to just pull from my stash and go with a riot of the blues and greens, toned down by some solids in grey, blue and green too.It's bound in a pale blue as again this helps to bring the colour palette together.

When I quilted this one I experimented by trying out some of the different stitches on my very basic machine (please Santa bring me a super duper new machine, I've been really good!). I like the very wrinkly effect it's given the quilt, it looks so inviting doesn't it? Perfect for a curious baby that's just starting to try and get on the move!

The quilt measures approx 40" x 40" and has a hand embroidered label on the back.

NB: Apologies for rubbish photo quality the light is poor round these parts and the weeks weather forecast doesn't hold much hope of it getting any better!

Saturday, 12 November 2011

Super Sale Alert

Morning folks! I've got a Super Sale Alert for you all!!!

The lovely Mandy over at Simply Solids is having a sale......

11% off for 11 days starting on the 11th November.

She's got the usual fab Kona solids but she's just taken delivery of some great Moda pre-cuts including Bonnie & Camille's Ruby & Aneela Hooey's Little Apples. 

She'll also be loading onto the site this weekend the much awaited Echo. If like me you're loving this much sought after line you'll be very excited by that!!

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

update update

Remember a little while ago I told you about Rockfords Rock Opera??

Here's the post.

Well they've just contacted me to let me know that all parts of the opera are now available as Apps for the iPhone, iPad & iPod Touch. How cool is that??

Rockford's Rock Opera is currently No.6 in the App Book charts and is currently challenging the mega players such as Disney in the popularity stakes. Woo Hoo for British I say!

So here are the links to the Apps::

Part One is FREE and is over an hour long

Part Two is £2.99

Part Three is £2.99

Part Four is £2.99

We've already downloaded them and they are just fantastic, we all love them not just the little people!!

Rumour has it that the success of Rockfords Rock Opera has been brought to the attention of some huge names in the USA with a celebrity version thought to be in production featuring some well known names......WATCH THIS SPACE!

Saturday, 5 November 2011

sewing everyday

Well for the first time in months I appear to have done some sewing everyday this week. Get me, I'm finishing off all my WIPs and sewing up a storm of handmade goodies ready for Christmas gifts! 

First up I've finished quilting this baby quilt and am just sewing the binding on. There will be a full reveal post another time after I've given it to my friend next week sometime, baby Ethan's 5 months old now so it's not that late!!!

I've also made some neckerchief dribble bibs and after many failures and ruined bibs, I've also mastered adding on popper stud fastenings!! A couple of these are off to my friend Kyleigh for her little girl to road test and some are going to friends! 

At last I've managed to make me a little purse from the Easy Peasy Purse pattern available from the lovely Lisa at U-Handbag. I've had the pattern and kit stashed for a while but really needed to have a go at making the purse as I want to make a couple more of these and fill them with goodies for 
Christmas gifts!

I've also finally finished my first ever knitting project, this fab tank top for me. Unfortunately it will have to be put away until next Autumn as I'm a little large for it just now!! I think this is why I lost interest in knitting it. My mum bless her came to the rescue and finished it off for me in just a couple of hours and I've just got to sew it together when my darning needles arrive!!

I learnt lots from knitting this tank top, especially pattern reading!! I knitted a whole section too big as I'd misread the pattern and it was only when I went into my LYS, which is where I took the beginner knitting course, that the lovely owner went through the pattern with me and I realised what I'd done wrong!!

Over the weekend I'm hoping to get a bit more knitting done on 'Little Miss H's' cardigan, the one that I blogged about the other day, as well as making a knitting needle roll for my needles and a couple of pairs of baby trousers.

What are your plans for the weekend??

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Amazing crafty friend....

Let me introduce you to my amazing paper crafty friend Kyleigh! Kyleigh does the most amazing papercuts and I'm a lucky gal to own one!

Kyleigh and I were put in touch by a mutual Twitter buddy when I tweeted a help request for gift ideas for my hubby for our 1st wedding anniversary. As the gift should be paper related, a papercut was perfect! Ideas were banded about and the design was finalised, a reminder of our fab wedding in Florida.

Here are some more of Kyleigh's designs, all available via her website in her Not On The High Street Store. Alternatively contact her via the website or twitter regarding a comissioned piece.

All photo's courtesy of Kyleigh's Papercuts
As Kyleigh had seen my quilts she asked if I'd be interested in doing a swapsie, a baby quilt for her daughter in return for a papercut for my hubby! Perfect! Once again we banded ideas around about the style and most importantly the fabric, the quilt is the one I recently blogged so I'll just leave you with a quick picture of it.

Kyleigh's Quilt
Don't you just love Twitter and the way it connects people? I do!

Friday, 28 October 2011

Ta Dah! Another Quilt...

I think that I can safely say that this is by far my favourite quilt make to date!

Peek a Boo M!
I love how fresh it looks, the colour scheme and especially the fabric! I love love love this Denyse Schmidt range of fabrics for Joann's stores (USA). I was so lucky that I had a stateside buddy who could send me some!

The pattern is one I have used in baby quilts before and is an I-Spy quilt pattern that I bought from the lovely Amy some time ago. This time I improvised a bit and instead of making the squares in the centre 3.5" I made them 2.5". I've backed the quilt in some Momo I had sat in my stash. 

This quilt seems to have taken me an age to complete and I must be honest but I do feel relieved that it is now on it's way to it's new owner! I totally lost my sewing mojo in early pregnancy and the quilt just sat half pieced for months before guilt took over and forced me to get off my ass and get this beauty finished!!

Hand embroidered label
I also made some matching bunting for the recipient's nursery too! How cute is that?

The measures approx 36" x 36" and is quilted with wonky straight lines - it's my speciality you know!!

I've also decided that this quilt will be my entry into this years Bloggers Quilt Festival, hosted as ever by the lovely Amy

Please click on the image to take you to the link up party for the festival!

If you've never entered you should as it's a great way to get oodles of inspiration, see new blogs and generate traffic to your blog too!! A win win all round I think!!
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