Blogger’s quilt festival – Original design

Hello and welcome, especially if you are visiting from the Blogger's Quilt Festival. I'll put the kettle on. Everyone else can make your own - you're family. I've decided to enter my Migration quilt into the Original Design category. The blocks for this quilt were made to my rather persnickerty requirements by my wonderful friends in Bee a Brit Stingy. I really love the cohesive scrappiness that comes from having a fairly strict colour scheme but no other control over the fabrics used. I tried not to obsess too much over the placement of the blocks and just aimed for a balance of values across the top, and I am so glad I did. I can waste DAYS faddling about moving blocks around, and [Read more...]

Quilt brewing

No, that's nothing to do with beer (although I wouldn't say no). It's more about the way things seem to grow in my brain. Little idea bubbles coming to a head in the form of crappy pencil sketch. Then the stash raiding and cutting fabric into tiny little shreds. Followed by something that kind of resembles the thing in my head. Or at least it will after I've done an awful lot more to it.

Bloody hell, a finished quilt!

My Migration quilt is finished! I'm so pleased with how it turned out and it didn't take long at all. Of course, that's what happens when the world's best bee mates make most of the blocks. I'm really liking this bee thing. I whacked the blocks up on the design wall fairly randomly without thinking about it too much and tried to minimise the faddling about with rearranging that normally lasts at least a week. I'm really glad I did - over thinking these things can take a lot of the fun out of the process for me. As it was, I had this arranged, sewn together and quilted in about six hours. The binding took the rest of the evening (I just can't not hand finish a binding - it's a slight [Read more...]


Rachel, it seems like five minutes since you turned thirteen. Please stop growing up so fast. Not only is it making me feel old, but your little-girlness is slipping away at an alarming rate. I dread the day when you no longer want me to wait "just a sec, just a sec" (spoiler alert - it never is just a sec) while you get ready for bed so that I can tuck you in. I feel it now, that cutting of the umbilical cord. Your perfectly natural and appropriate independence. But you are my baby, my first, my little girl. I remember the teenage years being hard to cope with as a teenager, but I never realised how hard it is as a parent. Next you'll develop an interest in dating, god help us all. But [Read more...]

More dressmaking

I had an "aha" moment the other day when I realised why I've been doing so well on my no-quilting-fabric-but-dressmaking-fabric-is-totally-allowed plan: I have suddenly turned into the world's most prolific dressmaker. It's a veritable sweatshop here. And then there are all the totally quilt-worthy leftovers that don't count as fabric purchases because they are scraps. See? Genius! This weekend was a whirlwind of pattern tracing, full bust adjustments (I can do them without looking at tutorials now) fabric cutting and frantic sewing together of garments. I've got another dress waiting in the wings and two others are yet to be photographed, but without further ado, I present to you: 1. [Read more...]

Small beginnings

I've been following Kristy's blog for a while (she of the amazing David Tennant pixellated masterpiece), and have really enjoyed reading about her early quilts. So in the spirit of shameless copying, I present several of mine:1. First ever quilt. This teeny thing (i.e. too small to be of any use at all) was made in 2001, back when the only teach-yourself-to-quilt resources were depressingly old-fashioned books from the library. On the plus side, the piecing is pretty good (those logs finish at 3/4") and it's hand quilted. On the negative side, the polyester batting makes me want to cry. The kids love it though (in a that-was-the-first-blanket-you-made-me kind of way), so it can't be all [Read more...]

Ode to an ‘E’ cup

I've been sewing the clothes for Annie's shop window for a couple of months now, and this time round she suggested I might like to make something that I could wear once it's finished doing its duty. Together, we picked the Mortmain dress in teal squared elements with a big-ass metal zip. The Mortmain pattern is beautifully presented and very well written, so I couldn't wait to get to it.Of course, the massiveness of the buzzoomz meant doing my first ever FBA. The interwebs is full of useful (but slightly conflicting) advice on how to do this, so after falling down the rabbit hole for several hours I finally settled on this tutorial, mainly because it made the most sense to me at the [Read more...]