Friday, 30 October 2015

Chicken Feet for a Friday Smile

Recently I was asked to replace the feet and repair the legs of the chicken suit for the CHICS (Children's Cancer Support) group. 
The full suit is worn by the CHIC at all their fundraising events. 
I replaced them in a more substantial fabric and they looked so funny but were exactly what they wanted and looked much better when they were worn over human feet. I had no intention of modelling them here for you, I must say!
The gas engineer did look at me quite oddly when he came in to check the meter and saw them hanging in the hall.
I was only too glad to help and certainly didn't want payment or reward but within a couple of days I received this delivery of  gorgeous flowers. I must say they really made me smile and I was very grateful but CHICS now know never to try to repay me for any help I give in the future!! I'd far rather that the money went to help the children.
The smile button is on full alert this week over at Annie's blog, a stitch in time so pop over for more smiles to kick start your weekend. 
This week I enjoyed a super day out at my lovely friend Neet's house, where we did a little crafting and a lots of chatting and eating fabulous food. Her pizza's with a cauliflower base, (YES CAULIFLOWER!!!) are to die for and I'm smiling because I have the recipe.
I am standing on tippy toe here with Neet as she is so much taller than me but it hardly made a difference, I'm still a little titch! 
Here's the patchwork bag I made for her which I have been saving for some time.....
Neet gave me this exquisite church which she had made from a die cut and it goes so well with the origami Christmas tree which I made. The tree is so easy and is easy to find on pinterest.

Neet had an amazing fun display for Halloween, with some items she had made herself ...
but this witch, bought in Prague, kicked her legs, screamed and her eyes lit up.
Yesterday I visited an exhibition in Chester with my quilt group at All Saint's Church, Hoole Road. It's on until Saturday and is well worth a visit if you are near enough to get there.
Yes, I've had a good week with lots of smiles and laughs and there are more to come as soon as I get over to Annie's.

Sunday, 25 October 2015

Attic Window Quilt & Malvern Show

Had a busy, tiring week, ending with a trip to the Autumn Quilt Show in Malvern. A long journey there and back as Fridays are always extra busy on the motorways, but we all really enjoyed it.

Winter Village, Attic Window Quilt.
This week I finished this Christmas quilt in double quick time. 
A fairly small quilt and it measures 42 inches x 50 inches.
 My friend Josie told me about the tutorial video for it on Missouri Star Quilt Co site and I wanted to try it out. It was so quick and easy to make, especially with the help of the excellent video instruction. I have found that MSCO tutorials are so easy to follow and their presenter Jenny gives good hints, tips and shortcuts for the easy ways to make quilts.
I love the 3D effect it gives of the scene through the windows.

Here's a taster of the Malvern Show.......So many fabulous stands
The Contented Cats
Tudor Rose
Lots of dolls and Christmas makes on display. 
 some of my favourite exhibits......
 mind bogglingly amazing detail.....
 loved these small arty quilt hangings.....
a great way to use up scraps.
 The black really makes the pinwheels pop giving a 3D look. Simple but clever.
 This close up of a large quilt really shows the quality and detail of the exhibits.

Friday, 16 October 2015

Holly Swag & Friday Smile

 It looks like I might as well admit it.... these days, I only manage to post when I realise that it's Friday and I know I should add a smile to Annie's and all the other lovelies who join in this bit of fun each week.

This week I have been busy but I've managed a few bits of sewing and finished this swag for Christmas. There I have said it... CHRISTMAS!! 
It's looming making things for the occasion is the best part for me. 
No! I'm not leaving it up over the fire until Christmas! It's packed away already!
 I saw similar at an exhibiton in Kent, earlier in the year but I had to make it in my own pattern and change the style and size. It's quite quick and easy to make.
Just cut out big holly leaves in seasonal fabric and lining pieces for the backs. Stitch a bit of thin wadding or interfacing to stiffen them , sew around the leaves, trim and turn to the right size. Press and stitch up the gap. 
The berries are cardboard or plastic discs covered with red fabric gathered up (with a bit of wadding popped inside), or just use big red buttons. 
Here is my template but the leaves can be made any size to suit.
 I marked around the card then cut extra for the seams. 
It doesn't matter which way up the template is used.
Stitch veins onto the leaves using a triple stretch stitch, which shows up somewhat bolder than a normal straight stitch. Curve the lines to look "natural"

I spotted this poster, below, on pinterest ... how true! 
No matter where I go I always take "threads" with me! 
DH says that when they are in your sandwiches, that's the time to complain!
and I hope you'll pop over to her blog to see some more.
It's good to smile.. it costs nothing and it's catching!
When my friend Dolores visited last week I loved her new sewing case, which she had bought in IKEA. I had the green eyed monster so my DH kindly treated me to one this week. 
I thought I would personalise mine to distinguish it from anyone else's as I am sure that some of my quilt club friends will want one for themselves when they see mine.
I haven't quite decided what to add to the back to finish it off. Any ideas, a word, a quote??
 It is good value for £10 as there are so many sewing notions inside held by elastic keeps. Large shears, snips, unpicker, pins needles, etc. 
It's so handy to take in my kit for workshops.

Friday, 9 October 2015

1st Quilt for Dolores & a Friday Smile

My lovely friends, Dolores and Alan, spent time with us this week and we allhad a lovely time together out and about but the main success was that I helped Dolores to assemble the quilt she was making for her daughter. The First Quilt she has made!
We also attended the Happy Stampers Show in Port Sunlight where it was good to see so many crafty friends.
Earlier in the Summer I visited Dolores in Maidstone and kicked her off making the centre Celtic interlocked hearts panel, which she finished, then she made 180 blocks so we worked together to assemble them all into this wondrous huge quilt below. Amazingly, it ended up perfectly square considering it is 2.14 metres (7 foot) square. 
  Once finished, we enjoyed a lovely day out to visit the super ladies at 
Quilters Trading Post in Buerton Cheshire, far out in the countryside, 
where Dolores arranged for it to be professionally quilted on their huge Gamill machines. 
I'm joining in with Annie's Friday Smile as we've enjoyed such a happy, productive, time together.
More smiles to start off the weekend over at Annie's place!

It was fascinating to watch a machine in progress before Dolores selected the wadding, her backing fabric  and stitch pattern. There's her quilt on the table above, ready to go but it will be nearly Christmas before it's ready as the machines are all booked up!
It's such a lovely place with beautiful examples hanging around the walls and it is an Aladdin's cave for quilters. 
Dolores had a welcome rest from making all her important decisions and sat in the rest corner with one of the staff before we headed off to Bridgemere Garden World for lunch.
I've got a Friday Smile after our super time together but it was so sad to see them go. Looking forward now to the next time.