Friday, October 31, 2008

More Halloween Frivolity...

Halloween II

Flushed with my success (it was finished) with 'Halloween' I had another rush of blood in October 2001 and began my Bat Quilt 'Halloween II', I think there were going to be more but this was as far as my 'series' got:-)
I found the most amazing pumpkin buttons in two sizes, probably on The Button Lady's stand at one of the quilt shows, they make perfect eyes, although they are a little uncomfortable when you lean back on the settee!

When I look at the back of these quilts I can see the fabric I used on Halloween must have been a border print, the back of both that and II are made from the same fabric. As you can see at the time I was playing with fancy quilt backs!

Detail of Halloween see previous post


Don't you just love Halloween it is such a great time, and one is able to make the odd frivolous quilt!
I bought some fabulous halloween fabric many years ago when I first started quilting, actually it was probably in 2000 which now seems like many years ago, that is when I bought the fabric, not began quilting if you see what I mean, I had by then been a veteran quilter for all of 18 months! Anyway you know the sort of fabric I mean - the kind you have absolutely no idea what you could do with it, but hey you just HAVE to have it! It was a scrumptious Debbie Mumm halloween fabric and it was in the sale need I say more?! It sat in my stash for several months I only had a small stash back then, this was during the time when I felt it was necessary to use or at least have a project in mind for all of my fabrics... yes I can hear you laughing and you're right it didn't last long, hence studio now being too small!
I'm rambling sorry....
Halloween (back of)

Back to halloween fabric... Back in the day you had to spend £25(I think) to get free shipping with Amazon I was buying a few books and hadn't quite made the £25, now we all know there is no point in wasting £5 in p&p when you can spend £15 on a good book is there? So I had to have a look for something for me and I came across one called Stack n Whack by Bethany Reynolds I had no idea what is was about but I loved the name and it did have a picture of a nice quilt on the front!!!
There is a point to this I promise!
So I had the fabric and then this book arrived, great choice of book by the way I loved it, still do. Obviously I had to make a quilt out of it, there was enough of the Halloween fabric to make one so off I set. Did I mention this was at the beginning of October and we were moving at the end of the month? Thought I could do a little packing interspersed with a little sewing... now come on you all know it makes sense! All it needed was the border when we moved out.
Once we had unpacked and I was able to get back to some quilting I decided to put some embroidery on it, having got a fancy sewing machine with an embroidery unit for my birthday that year. I finally finished the wall hanging in February 2001.

Delia's pumpkin soup....

Aha is this where I went wrong - I didn't follow Delia's recipe? It it looks better than mine, sounds better that mine and it no doubt tastes better than mine!!! Ah well there's always next year:-)

All Hallows Eve......

Ummm pumpkin soup - a delicacy requiring something of an acquired taste me thinks, at least the recipe I followed does! Note to self - next year give pumpkin pie a whirl!!

Fortunately we had this hideous beast to keep the wandering spirits at bay.......

Friday, October 17, 2008

Friday already....

Oh no it's Friday again and I haven't posted all week, I made a mental note to myself after last Friday's epic posting session that I would try to post at least twice a week, so much for good intentions!

We have been entertaining Tony's niece this week, she is great fun, being a vampire (my son's description!) she does like to keep me up at night talking and sewing. Not that I did much sewing was too tired after the first evening, though I did finally manage to design the centre of a wall hanging for City and Guilds, something I have been putting off for weeks! All I have to decide on now are the corners and borders, but that will have to wait until next week.

We have a Regional Day at Braithwaite Hall on Saturday with Janet Cook, Janet is also doing a workshop on Sunday. I can't go to that now (boo hoo)as my niece is being Christened and duty calls! Will just have to indulge in a purchase or 2 tomorrow to make up for it..... well that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!

Friday, October 10, 2008

More Little Miss Domesticity!

Today I decided if I tidied my studio I would have more space to work?!
Also thought I would declutter it at the same time umm... Now when it comes to the rest of the house and everyone else's stuff I can declutter like a woman possessed, but in my studio? nooo its just too painful, come on I'm bound to find a use for anything I throw out 2 days/weeks after it has gone to the tip!

So I tidied a couple of shelves it looks better on those 2 shelves but I also took everything off my desk and dumped it on my sewing table, can no longer see the top of the sewing table, but the top of the desk looks great I even got the polish out and polished it! Now I AM going to declutter this stuff, hence the mad flurry of blogging!

Perhaps when I get up in the morning the decluttering fairy will have been and sorted it all out for me... speaking of fairies my partner seems to think we have a washing up fairy who comes in and does our at night whilst he is snoring in front of the telly. Being 'creative' (bah) I cannot possibly wash up after eating its just too soon after the time spent in the kitchen cooking, and apparently if I don't do it no one else can, ah what it is to be indispensable...NOT

Back to the studio, personally I think it is too small and I should have a larger space, do we really need a sitting room do you think?!

Pix from Edinburgh

Flying High by Sally Bramald

This little quilt won the wholecloth category (I think)the workmanship is superb, its the one I would have liked to have made or at least taken home:-)

Remember Me by Maggie Davies

Now I know I'm not a flowery quilts person but this little quilt really caught my eye, its painted beaded has fusible ribbon applique the detail was wonderful (note I for some bizarre reason didn't take a detail shot) oh yes and its much better in the flesh!

Harrogate Embroidery show

Last weekend I was back in Harrogate again at what used to be called the Madeira show think it might be ichf now, whatever..... it is a touring event Iwill look for a link to their website and post it later. It is ichf

It is a great show there is some quilting but it is mainly embroidery and lots of colleges and schools have displays of work from their textile students. I looove this show, the best bit (for me) is the fashion show were some the work (clothes and head wear) of the students is shown very professionally by them on a catwalk, it always has a vibrant and exciting a atmosphere and the work is superb. I always feel uplifted after a visit.

I was lucky enough to steward on the Contemporary Quilt group stand for a couple of hours in the afternoon. This enabled me to have a really good close up look at the journal quilts that had been loaned by the members for the event, they were stunning. They are part of an ongoing challenge to make one 12" square quilt a month for 12 months, each participant had submitted 4 quilts. It was great talking to folks and hearing all their complimentary comments, if you get the opportunity to steward at an event go for it, it is great fun. Since you are on the stand you see so much more than if you just visit, perhaps it is because you don't have so much else going on in your mind or to catch your eye and have time to just look.

Pix from the garden

Hydrangers and nasturtiums

I don't know what this bush/wannabe tree is, but it grows in front of our sitting room window and is always overloaded with berries. The birds provide us with plenty of entertainment as they fight over them during the late autumn and winter months!

I'm not much of a gardener these days I used to do lots, never seem to have the time or inclination these days, must be old age! I have chosen these pix carefully so you cannot see the abundance of weeds and nettles growing alongside and amongst our plants!

Edinburgh Quilt Show

I went up to the Edinburgh quilt show in September and was thrilled to see Pink Parfait had won second prize in the theme category 'A Touch of Tradition', so spent the first hour I was there in a bit of a daze wandering around with a silly grin on my face!!

After I had some lunch and calmed down I was able to have a good look round, although a small show it was well attended with lots of quilts and plenty of traders. Its not as overwhelming as some of the larger ones and doable in a day.

Orchard's harvest!

We are very fortunate to have a rather old orchard, with an abundance of both apples and wild life, and since we began putting out peanuts we regularly have a woodpecker come and visit. If only I were able to catch him on camera but he seems to be shy!

I have been making Mrs Beeton's apple chutney.
As ever with me nothing goes as straightforwardly as it should! After getting deep into making chutney I discovered we didn't have enough malt vinegar, I added the little cider vinegar we had but drew the line at using the balsamic, as I was still short I used the half a bottle of red wine that had been rattling about the cupboard for some time. It turned out great not so acidic as normal, we decided we preferred it made this way so the recipe has been altered, sorry Mrs B:-)

Also found a recipe for apple and cinnamon jam/jelly, but I got a bit carried away with the cinnamon will not be quite so heavy handed next time, still tastes great though.

Have also made Delia's Christmas mincemeat which smells delicious am almost tempted to use it now, though have been good it is bottled and stored under the stairs out of sight out of mind?!

overloaded apple trees


Have been little miss domesticity of late hence the lack of blogging.

We have a bumper crop of apples both cooking and eating, so have been busy baking with them all.

But will be as round as a barrel if I don't stop making apple crumble, I hate to see the apples go to waste and I looove apple crumble!!