Update

Why is it that any time off you have from work seems to fly by so quickly?  I was off for a total of 11 whole days and yet once I got back to work it felt like I’d never been away.

Phill did not have time off with me, so I split the time between catching up on all the housework that needed doing, and being completely lazy, watching silly films and reading.  A perfect week lol

I did make a trip to the quilt shop here in Swansea, called Red House Quilting.  The shop isn’t that big, but it’s amazing just how much stock they have.  I had some gift vouchers to spend there, and had found a pattern for a quilt that I fancied making, so Linda from the shop spent a long time with me choosing fabrics and as I am useless with colour schemes of any type it was a good job she did!

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Here’s the fabrics, which have now been cut up into little pieces and will eventually (I hope) look like this….. which is the picture on the back of the pattern book. 

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My mother came with me to the quilt shop, which is in Mumbles, a very popular tourist area here in Swansea.  We had some coffee, some lunch, some more coffee, and some ice cream, all mixed in with a bit of window shopping and a lot of walking!   The photo in the heading of my blog is of Mumbles, and I did take a few photos of my own which I will put in a separate post.

I did manage to get some stitching done while I was off, although not as much as I would have liked.  I heard that a stitching friend was going through a worrying time so made a little gift to brighten her day.  I’ve always wanted to try making a bourse, so thank you to Ursh for being my bourse guinea pig LOL

The chart is from the Gift of Stitching Magazine.  I also made a little scissors fob.  Unfortunately I did not take a photo of the bourse pulled into a little bag, hopefully Ursh may take one when she’s back on her feet and I can borrow it.

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Apologies for the quality of the photos, they were taken in work just as I was packing them up to take to the Post Office when I realised I hadn’t taken any photos at home.

Finished quilt pics

Today I’d like to share with you pictures of my first finished quilt, but before I forget I had a couple of requests for the link to the tutorial I watched on You Tube to make the star blocks in my last post. The tutorial was by Jenny from Missouri Star Quilt Co, you can see a link on their home page to the tutorials they have. They are the best tutorials I have found so far, very easy to follow, and they use lots of pre-cut fabrics like jelly rolls and charm packs, perfect for a beginner. Here’s the specific tutorial for the star block .

I watched a few tutorials and found a really easy looking one here. So I bought a jelly roll and a charm pack called Lovely by Sandy Gervais for Moda fabrics and set to work. A few weeks later here is the finished quilt. I used the left overs from the jelly roll strips to make a patchwork border and used a red floral fabric from the same range as the inner border and a plain red for the outer border.

The quilt is laid out on my king size bed so it’s quite a decent size. I’m giving it to my Mother for her birthday tomorrow as she is due to go into Hospital in the near future and thought it would be good for when she comes home and is recuperating, she can snuggle under it if she gets a bit chilly while sitting in the garden or watching TV.

The backing for the quilt is made from a plain yellow from the same fabric range, and you can see from the picture below where I have “stitched in the ditch”, basically just stitching in between the seams of each block to hold the front, back, and the batting together.

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Finally, this picture shows the binding around the edge of the quilt, using the same red fabric as the border with yellow piping.

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Thanks for visiting, and humouring my new addiction lol, I know this is primarily a stitching blog and I will be back tomorrow with an update of the Masquerade SAL. I can’t show you what else I have been up to this week as I’ve been working on my exchange piece for Rowyn.

If you haven’t visited Sheila’s blog recently, it’s worth a visit to see her framed Queen Lily, it’s gorgeous!

Lessons learnt today…

  1. Sewing a straight line is harder than it looks (excuse the fabrics, I know they don’t match at all, but they are just practice scraps)

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2. I should stay away from triangles/diamonds

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3.  I can make a mess very quickly

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4.  I already want a better sewing machine

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5.  I think I have a new hobby!

I have always fancied having a go at quilting, but have always been put off by a few things (see lesson number 1!). When Sheila and I visited Polstitches last year we went next door to Cross Patch and I literally drooled over the fabrics and quilts they had there. We had a look upstairs at their teaching room where there was a roomful of ladies sewing away making masterpieces and decided then that one day I would give it a try.

One of my work colleagues, Rose, has been talking about learning to quilt for years but never did anything about it either. However, we recently discovered a quilting shop here in Swansea, called Red House Quilting. We are planning a trip there in a few weeks (after payday!) so I thought I would watch a few You Tube tutorials and have a go.

I found some fantastic tutorials from the Missouri Star Quilt Co, based in the US. They are very easy to follow and very helpful for beginners like me.

I had a few hours to myself today so thought it was the perfect opportunity, so I grabbed some scraps of fabric I had collected over the years and made myself a very simple (and a little lopsided) practice quilt. The first blocks I made are definitely a lot worse than the last blocks, and by the time I sewed the border on I think my quarter inch seam was pretty good. I’ve had my little sewing machine for a few years and it is very basic, and did seem to struggle sometimes when it came to sewing over the thicker seams, so I am going have another try at making something on Phill’s mum’s machine, which even though it is a good few years old is very very good quality.

If any of you quilt and can point me in the direction of some good online stores/blogs/forums I’d be very grateful!

Back to cross stitch, and my progress on the Sampler Girl SAL this week

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Tonight is Dancing on Ice/Masquerade night – let’s see if I can keep up with Sheila this week LOL