Wednesday, 30 December 2009

Christmas Round up.

Well Christmas is all over and New Year will be upon us in a matter of hours! I do hope you all had a good Christmas and that your Santa was good to you.
Look what mine bought for me! Wow! Great fun, much better than slogging along with the same old dance routines on my DVDs, I don't think I'll get bored with this very soon. Hunney even seemed to be enjoying himself. LOL Of course we have games too.
But after all that prancing about I need a cuppa and that's just what my DS Joe provided, look at this lovely cup and saucer he found for me.
There were many other gifts, but I decided to blog just a few. As many of you will know, we had Christmas late due to my work schedule, so I didn't open my SSCS until Monday. Think about it, I had to hold out an extra three days! Could you have managed that?
I received my gifts from Lyn, look at all the lovelies she squeezed into her packages.

Some of the smaller goodies were tucked into the pockets of the sewing machine mat.
Thank you Lyn and thank you again Chooky for organising such a fun swap. Can I join in again next year please? Chooky has done a great job of posting pictures and details of all the swaps on her blog, why don't you go and have a look at all the fantastic gifts which flew all over the world.
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Do you remember I posted the odd teasing image of the gift I was making and sending? My partner was Tatania in Australia. I made this shopping tote.
And tucked these goodies in along with it.
Tatania has done a much better job of the photography on her blog.
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This is the last of my three days off, I'll be back at work tomorrow, but we do have a night out planned, my shifts allow for that. I'm off to torture myself on the Wii, got to get rid of all the excesses somehow. LOL
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Happy New Year to everyone, I wish you all the very best for 2010.
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Thursday, 24 December 2009

Christmas sewing.

I still have one block of Gail Pans Christmas Wishes to complete. I could have finished it easily by now, but I got side tracked. I had to purchase more napkins recently and as I grabbed plain ones I decided it was time to make a pretty box to sit them in. I could have found a tutorial somewhere on the WWW, but that would have been too easy! You know me, I set out on a journey of discovery. Here it is, for a first effort I'm pretty pleased with it.
What could be more Christmassy than British Robins with their red breasts?
or Tuis feeding on Pohutukawas?
I had to get a bit of Kiwi in there somewhere. ;-)
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Another necessary distraction is more place mats, I've invited so many people in for dinner on our special day on 28th that I didn't have enough place mats or cutlery! LOL A quick trip to the shops solved the cutlery problem, but if I wanted a matching set of place mats I had to make them.
And that's just what I did, four more mats and coasters. Now I'm all prepared to gather my family around me on Monday and to celebrate Christmas.
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I'm working late shifts today and tomorrow, although I have chores to do today I'm hoping to spend a quiet time tomorrow morning with my Hunney and my sewing, maybe I'll get Gail Pans Christmas Wishes finished. Though I can't quilt it, I have no batting and it's too late to ask Santa for some. So that will be a job for the new year.
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This year I have extra surprises under the tree as I took part on Chookys SSCS. I've been very good and have left all the packages unopened. It was fun to take part in a swap and to meet new people through the exchange. Blogland has been a great source of inspiration and support to me this year and I'm happy to have been a part of such a great group of people. I wish you all....

Nollick Ghennal as blein Vie Noa

Regulars will know that this traditional Manx greeting says,
Merry Christmas and a Good New Year.


Gratitude's
1) We had a wonderful year.
2) I married the man of my dreams.
3) My family will be with me for Christmas.

Monday, 21 December 2009

Sleepless nights.

So you know what that means right? Yep! I was scratching about at daft o'clock this morning looking for something quiet to be getting on with. My Gail Pan BOM won. I completed a block I had started a while ago and made inroads on another.
Now only one and a bit blocks remain to be stitched. I'm not promising to have this done by Christmas, or even the end of the year, but I really do want to complete it.
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Although I abandoned one along the way and slowed down almost to a halt on others I really enjoyed taking part in and collecting the patterns for the Block a Month projects this year. I'm not sure if I'll begin any new ones in 2010, LOL It might be better if I just concentrate on what's already started, but who can resist a new design?
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I'm working over Christmas as usual, so for me Christmas day will be Monday 28th and I'll have a full house, all the kids, their partners and mother. I'm in for a busy day. I've gotten most of the shopping done so for now, as it's my day off, I'm going to put my feet up and sew some more.
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Gratitude's
1) A day off, just when I really need it.
2) I'm all clean and tidy for Christmas.
3) The snow is not sticking.....down at sea level.

Thursday, 17 December 2009

What did you do today?

My recent spell of productivity continues. As promised here's a peep at the card I made for my Husband. Every year since we got together I've made a Christmas card for Tony, why should this year be any different? I whipped this one together yesterday evening.
Today I got stuck in a made up the new tree skirt I promised myself. I did all the piecing and quilting this morning, made a quick lunch, threw on a pan of carrot and caterpillar soup and while that bubbled I tidied and snipped thread ends, popped on and closed the binding!
Voilà! One new tree skirt in place. My tree looks so much better with a matching ensemble.
With the exception of the white border it's made entirely from my scraps box, the hearts are raw edge appliqué and true to form, there is no label! LOL
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Some time ago DS Jonny spotted this quilt. He's been pestering ever since. (Doesn't want much huh?) I really don't think I'm ready for that challenge, but I've come up with an idea of my own which I'm off to research. Wish me luck.
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Gratitude's
1) Loads of stitchy time.
2) Loads of stitchy inspiration.
3) Hunney loves my stitchy cards.

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

So, you've heard of the Chippendales right?

Now meet the 'Ginger-dales' LOL I've been going to make a gingerbread wall hanger for a couple of years and now I've gone and made four.
Three of these will be gifts for the colleagues with whom I'll be working on Christmas day.
I think maybe I should have used a different colour ribbon for their bows, but I love em anyway.
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This afternoon I plan to sit and make a cover for my diary. Each year the organisation provides me with a boring diary and I've taken to covering them, no arguments about whose is whose that way.
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Yesterday I finished Hunneys Christmas card, I'll have a picture of that tomorrow.
I'm off to play, byeeeeee.
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Gratitude's
1) Still no rain.
2) No snow here either.
3) Dinner is already cooked.

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

More Christmas Ornaments.

I did find more silver ornaments when I went out yesterday, and some pretty clear glass ornaments too, but more about that in a moment.
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I decided that my tree could do with a few more ribbons. I couldn't find more like the wedding ribbons, so instead bought a couple of yards of some pretty silver with blue stars and some sparkly silver pipe cleaners. I'm fairly sure everyone knows how to make ribbons for their tree, but just in case you've been in a cave or on a remote island for ever, here's how I did it.
I cut my ribbons into about 3 pieces per meter /yard.

I cut my long pipe cleaners into 6 inch pieces,

I made two folds in each piece of ribbon, (making three layers)
Then I pinched the ribbon in the centre and twisted the pipe cleaner around it.

After a couple of twists I tweaked out the ribbon, mine has wire in the edges to help it hold its shape.
Then I used the same pipe cleaner to twist it onto my tree. Not too tightly, so that it is easy to get off in a couple of weeks and reuse another year.
There you have it, quick, simple and cheap decorations which even the kiddies and men can make!
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As I said before I found some pretty glass decorations, but try as I might I just can't get a nice pic of them, so you'll have to take my word for how good they look.
I also found this beautiful heart ornament......
and two of these bells.
Isn't it lovely? They are not such a good early warning system as the gold bells, but I love them anyway.
The little blue cushion hanging behind the heart is a Pam Kellogg piece. Her crazy quilt work is just beautiful. I'm the very lucky owner of several items made by Pam.
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I promised Joe and Tony that I would do some baking today, but yesterday after I had been into town I set to at the sewing machine again, I've made gifts for my colleagues who like me will be working on Christmas day. You've heard of the Chippendales right? Come back tomorrow for more. LOL
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Gratitude's
1) Time to play.
2) Christmas inspiration.
3) Cold but dry days.

Monday, 14 December 2009

Share your Christmas tree.

I've gone for a change of colour this year. Usually I have a red and gold tree, but for the past few years I've been collecting blue and silver ornaments and I decided that I have just enough.
I also added the ribbons which were tied to the gazebo at our wedding, I think they look just perfect up there on the tree. Now I need to make a matching tree skirt and there is a distinct lack of bells, I need my early warning system! Click on the image for a closer look.
The gifts gathered around the trunk of the tree are all my SSCS from Lyn and that huge one there beside the tree is for my DS Joe.
I'm off into town now to see if I can get my paws onto any more blue and silver ornaments! LOL
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Please share your tree and let me know you've done it. I love Christmas tree inspiration as much as I love quilty inspiration.
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Gratitude's
1) We had a fantastic party on Saturday.
2) A quiet and peaceful recovery day yesterday.
3) I have today off work!

Thursday, 10 December 2009

SSCS

I've been a bad blogger!
With all that has been going on since we got home, I forgot to mention that my SSCS package had arrived while we were away. Look at all these parcels.
The lovely Lyn at Bluebird Quilts was my SS. I'm a good girl and all these lovelies will wait for me until Christmas day. I don't know which one is the ornament, so that will have to wait for Christmas day too. Thank you Lyn, and thank you Chookyblue for organising a Christmas swap yet again.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

I finally found time to sew!

Monday was the first chance I had to get back to my sewing machine. Thank goodness fro pre printed panels! You get that sense of satisfaction from a finish sooooo quickly with those. LOL
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The first piece I tackled was an advent calendar I picked up in Birmingham earlier this year. It went together really quickly.
I even dug about in my ribbon tin and added some 3D extras. It's kind of hard to see here, but rather than quilt around the bows on the gifts I stitched on ribbons and tied them into bows. The only thing I find disappointing is the wavy edges! It was perfectly flat when I had finished quilting it and adding the bows. I used the backing fabric to bind the layers by turning it to the top and after I had finished that, the waves appeared. Did I do something wrong? I've had it hung since Monday night, just pinned to the bottom of another quilt, until I get out to get a rod and decide where to hang it for real, some of the waves have settled a little, but as you see, it's not all calm yet. Oh Yeah! I was out shopping yesterday and forgot to get lollies to fill the remaining pockets!
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The second piece I started is one of the kiwiana projects I bought on my holiday. (Waving to Lee and Debs, they are waiting for this stuff to appear).
This panel just needed borders adding and the instructions in the kit called for the layers to be bagged out, which is all done.
So now I just need to slip closed the bottom and quilt as desired! I think for now I'll pop some black thread onto the machine and quilt in the black areas around the individual elements, then later I can take more time to play about with the images and perhaps even have a go at hand quilting. For now though, the quick machine idea is what I'm going with as I want this one on the wall by Saturday night, when we're having a bit of a party to celebrate our wedding with just a few friends and family.
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Hmm, what else can I tell you? We had to purchase another set of drawers to contain all the extra fabrics I acquired in recent months! It's full already. I see some reshuffling in my future. LOL
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Gratitude's
1) More time off work.
2) Time to sew.
3) Christmas shopping is nearly finished.