“Working with your hands brings sanity and bliss.”

“Anything worth doing is worth over-doing.  Always go to extremes.
If in doubt, add twenty more colours.”

Kaffe Fassett


My next PhD – a Christmas Log Cabin

I like to change my quilts round the house a few times a year and hence rather like seasonal quilts.  I’ve wanted to make a Christmas quilt for a while and having some Moda honey buns (1.5 inch pre cut strips) in modern Christmas fabrics, a log cabin design seems just the ticket.


I’ve been taking this project to sit & sew evenings but have decided it needs a bit more focus if we’re to enjoy it this Christmas!  So while when the heat and the sun get too much, I am cooling myself down with my log cabin blocks.



New swing seat canopy

Last summer the canopy on our swing seat finally got to the stage when it needed replacing.  So in the expectation of some lovely sunny days, I took advantage of a rather wet weekend to use up some of my scraps and make new one.

It was all rather iterative – ie I made it up as I went along! which was very relaxing and then lightly quilted it with leaves and flowers.


After the rain stopped yesterday afternoon, I was able to sit back and enjoy the garden.




Quilt therapy in Hamburg

We’ve recently been on holiday in Germany and spent a couple of days in Hamburg. I took the opportunity to search the Internet and found a quilt shop to visit!

The Quilt House (www.quilthouse.de) is located quite close to the centre of Hamburg and while there isn’t a great deal of fabric to fondle, there were some super quilts on display.  Both the owner, Andreas,  and his mother are long arm quilters so we found much in common!

He also designs templates and patterns – the day we called in they had had a delivery of plastic templates and were busy making up the instruction packs.  Needless to say I bought one together with some fabric and a magazine to give me a fix after two weeks of patchwork abstinence!


Hector and Hessian – a bit of fun!

We’re having an Open Gardens & Scarecrow Show in our village today.  Rather ambitiously, we decided to make Hector and Hessian jumping over our hedge.  It seemed like a good idea before we started!

It has taken much studying of pictures of horses jumping over fences, quite a bit of hessian and straw and lots of invention!  Getting him in position over the holly hedge last night was a challenge but  a bit of bribery of male family members with a BBQ first seemed to do the trick





Scrap Quilt finished and ready for new home

A friend wanting to quilt her quilt this weekend was a good incentive to get my scrap quilt onto the frame and quilted over the last couple of weekends.


Simple quilting was all that seemed necessary  given it’s overall business.  Also for me, scrap quilts really are utilitarian and so it seems right to keep it simple.

I made the binding from scraps and then have enjoyed sitting in the garden to sew it on.  In some ways, it’s one of my favourite parts of the quilt process – it’s the final finishing touch and I can start thinking about  my next project in earnest!

Although I’m planning to give it to my mother for her spare room, I couldn’t resist popping it onto one of my beds and admiring it!

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Making progress on the Scrap Quilt

The last couple of weeks have been busy so I’ve not had a lot of time to sew – and I do find satin stitching around applique pretty uninspiring.  Anyway this weekend I decided to get the flowers appliqued and see what progress I could make with the quilt.

Of course, the flowers weren’t really that bad once I got going and I’ve found myself at the laying out of blocks stage.


It’s only about 72″ long so I’m thinking of a slightly wider border top and bottom with a strip of scrap down the middle to make it a bit longer as it’s destined to be a single bed quilt

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And a green border seemed to compliment the flowers – I’m thinking of a title like “Flower Garden”.


Workshop with Rowena Allsopp

A couple of week’s back I spent a very enjoyable Saturday doing a workshop with Rowena Allsopp and learnt how to use twins needles.  I’ve only had a sewing machine for more than 30 years but have never strayed into twin needles!

And now I wonder why not – they are simple to use and provide interesting possibilities.  We learnt to use them for sewing narrow ribbon onto fabrics which we’d previously stuck onto fusible vilene.


It was a great workshop – not only did I learn something new but I managed to make the whole project at the workshop!


Time to work on my PhDs!

Having finished my series of New York, cushions it’s time to work on something else.  Tempting though it is to start a quilt to go with the cushions, I thought I should have look at my PhDs (Projects Half Done!) I’ve got 4 unfinished projects – well I had a couple more and heartlessly decided I was never going to make them so threw them out.  Sometimes UFOs or PhD are precisely that for a reason.

Amongst the PhDs are a couple of scraps quilts on the go (I sew together pairs of 2 1/2″ squares of scrap fabric as leaders and enders when I am piecing other quilts and these grow into scrap quilts in their own right).  I came across this pattern a while back from Quilt Sampler magazine


which I can extend with an extra row to be large enough for a single bed.

I’ve sewn all my squares into rows and then blocks



And found that I’d made a reasonable start on the flowers.


I’ve decided to make Suffolk puffs for the flower centres.


Little Waltham Quilt Show

Every two years one of the groups I belongs to hold a quilt show. It opened today and finishes tomorrow.

So on Thursday afternoon, it was time to set up


We had lots of great quilts – and lots of smaller pieces of patchwork


After a few hours, the chaos (and the Church) was transformed






And in the entrance, we hung the raffle quilt -