Saturday 29 February 2020

Not One...

But two finishes to boast about!
It's been a busy couple of days in my house!
I have not one, but two finishes!!
First up. I finished my Flip Flop Scraps quilt on Thursday evening. 
I added a little to the side borders, to ensure there would be no midnight fights over the covers, and it fits our bed beautifully.
I have a wool batting for it, but sadly no backing yet. That will need another day trip, preferably with one or more of the girls. Then I get to have fun quilting it.
As I was finished quite early in the evening, I pulled out this recently bought kit.
I fiddled with the fabrics and read the instructions, then went off to bed without making a start.
Friday morning before work, I spent some time sorting and pressing fabrics.
Hmm... Something not right here! That blue amid the pink was bothering me.
So a quick swap.....
And it was time to go to work.
Mr H took me out for dinner last night, no special reason, just because.
So I did nothing crafty.
We watched a movie when we got home. Schindler's list.
An old one.
A good one.
A long one.
We went to bed late.
This morning things were a little different.
It's Saturday, no work. Yay!
Aside from some laundry, I've done almost nothing but sew all day.
So many pretty fabrics.
It is Tula Pinks range called Pinkerville.
The quilt blocks are quite large, as are the pieces.
I love this swan fabric. It comes in three colourways.
As do the unicorns.
And the butterflies.
 The swallows also feature in three colours.
In the blue block.
In the sashing.
And the binding.

And here it is, the finished top.
I started just before 9 am and had it finished before 4 pm.
I did take a couple of breaks, to make and eat lunch, and to chat with Debbie when she called in to drop some stuff she had borrowed.
Sadly, this one is also awaiting backing.
At least I can show you that.
Another of Tula Pinks fabrics, called Daydream.
It should be with me on Tuesday. 
What to do with myself while I wait?
Tomorrow part three of I stitch should arrive.
That will keep me going for a day or two.
I have another wee kit stashed away, awaiting it's turn.
And I'll need to get going on my March Secret Christmas ornament.
That's a little thing Janice and I have going to encourage mostly me I think, to get on and do one a month. 
I'll need to sort and cut fabric for that. I might go do that once I'm done here.
And yes, I got in my 15 minutes a day.
Every day before work.
Some days more, which is always a bonus.

Wednesday 26 February 2020

A Leap and a bound!!

 I feel like I have made great progress over the last couple of days.
My blocks are finally complete, with their green panels on each side.
I only just made it, before the spool ran out!
Before doing anything else, before I even pressed them I did some de fluffing on my machine. Why is it that sewing scraps causes more fluff than any other cut of fabric?
All of the blocks had a little extra green, I had enough in each WOF to cut generously, so I left the selvedges on and each piece had an extra half inch..
Then it was time to press them all open. Finally I could see completed blocks.
The green has tamed the chaos of all those different fabrics and the riot of colours.
Having grown heartily fed up with what seemed an endless marathon sewing them all together, I fell in love with the completed and pressed blocks and couldn't wait to spread them out on the design floor. I did wonder if I might have to have a shuffle about.
No shuffling required.
Then came the quandary.
7x7 blocks or 6x8 blocks?
Either way, there would be an issue.
Too big for my frame or I would have to do some cutting and patching of batting!!
After a messenger 'chat' with Janice and lots of chat with Tony.......
I went to bed a slept on it.
Then this morning I decided on the 6x8 layout.
Just up to our chins, but plenty of width, so no one gets cold on a winter night.
Cut and piece the batting it is.
So in my 15 Minutes +++ before work today I put the first quarter of a quilt top together. (See five past eight, I was out of the door ten minutes later).
I'm loving this and will be getting back to it this evening, just as soon as I'm done here.
Hmm, just the small matter of the backing to address......
In the garden...
There are more tomatoes!
Of course there are more tomatoes.
I wish my chillies would change colour, they remain stubbornly green.
And over the weekend we harvested 30 corn cobs.
I wasn't fast enough with the camera, sorry I was busy with tomatoes and only got these last few before Tony got them bagged and vacuumed for the freezer.
I have some emails to respond to, then I'm off to play.

I hope your progress feels as good as mine.

Sunday 23 February 2020

When life gives you tomatoes....

 Lots and lots of tomatoes...
Make relish.
 and soup!
Then if time permits, you can sew some more!
I've been good this week and steadily working away on my flip flop scraps quilt each morning before work. I'm finally able to begin adding the green sashing strips.
So happy to say I have achieved my minimum of 15 minutes a day.
No shopping trips this week, but my hubby did surprise me with this.
A Sid quilting ruler. I really need to finish something, so that I can have a play.
My weekend sewing took a hit yesterday as I worked in the morning and had guests visit for the evening.
Today is better. I worked on my secret Christmas project this morning, then after lunch we went out into the garden for a while, we harvested 30+ corn cobs and got them into the freezer. I also brought in another bowlful of tomatoes.....
I've done a few domestic chores and once I'm done here I plan to return to my Christmas Ornament, if I apply myself, I could get it finished today.

Monday 17 February 2020

15 minutes a day, achieved.

I needen't have worried last week. In spite of a very early start and late finish, I did manage to get in my 15 minutes last Tuesday. LOL Because of my habit of getting up earlier than I need to, I found time to knit for a while before my big day out with work. 
Here is a Linky if you want to see how others have done. 
I also managed through thee week to complete the last blocks for my flip flop scrap quilt.
And made a start at cutting the green sashing strips. I need 98 of them, so it may take a while.
Especially if I keep taking Saturdays off to go visiting quilt stores and buying more stuff. LOL
Sunday was spread between the kitchen and my stitching chair. As I prepped the slow cooker, made bacon and egg pie and got on with some of my secret Christmas ornament project. I'm a little slower this month, but I have had a few more distractions. 
 I took a new friend to visit Cathy at the Quilting shed on Saturday. She like most first timers, found it a little over whelming. LOL I did warn her.
I had taken along a panel that Mum bought for me, on one of our trips to the Birmingham Quilt Festival. Cathy helped me to find some fabrics to compliment it and also to come up with a plan. More about that another time as I have forgotten to take photos.
While I was there I spotted this pattern and just had to have it.
As soon as I saw it I knew that I had to make a sunflower version.
I was of course inspired by my Valentines day flowers. Now I just need to collect a bunch of yellow fabrics. LOL
My friend was inspired by a cushion that was on display. Cathy had made it as a demo for an applique class, but was very happy to make sure my pal had everything she needed and lots of advice on going about making it.
She really is a very lovely, kind and generous lady.
Another recent aquisition came from an online source. A store I follow on fb is having a big clear out sale. Lots of items are being listed at very special prices on her fb page and I was delighted to score one of the last few kits for this lovely Pear Quilt.
It's only a small quilt, finishing at 21 inches square, so shouldn't take long, once I make a start.
I can tell you now, that I have not achieved my 15 minutes a day before work goal this week. It just didn't happen this morning. 😞
Never mind, I plan to do some more to my ornament this evening once I have cleared my emails, so maybe that will count as making up time. 
It's still in the same day.

Monday 10 February 2020

Not a stitch was sewn.

That's not entirely true!

I set out well for FnwF. Getting started soon after I got in from work, Then got interrupted after two hours to make dinner, sadly I never got back to it.
Before the interruptions I discovered that I had miscalculated and need to cut quite a few more wee squares, so spent some time digging in the scrap drawer. Todays job will be to get them all cut, hopefully. 
 I also did a pile of pressing on Friday and found this.....
How did I miss that in the last round of pressing???
It's staying.
I'm not going to fix it.
Over the weekend
Not a stitch was sewn!
On Saturday evening we hosted a pot luck curry night.
It was a great evening, but my preparations took pretty much all day, so no time for sewing.
And on Sunday, I had a bad case of can't be bothereds. Though I did pick up my knitting in the evening, only to discover that I had made a mistake a few rows back and had to rip, rip, rip.
On the bright side...

My 15 minutes a day are focussed on Monday - friday, before work and once again I over achieved by getting in a minimum of 15 per day, sometimes 30 minutes, which is great. 


I'm going out of town for work tomorrow, we'll be leaving early and back late, so I'll have some making up to do on my 15 mins this week. I think I'll cope. LOL

Thursday 6 February 2020

Waitangi Day...

Today is a national holiday here in New Zealand.
If you want to know more, have a look here.
Of course, that means a day off work.  Tony and I agreed that we would spend the day at home together pottering in our craft rooms.
I spent most of the morning trotting between the kitchen and my room as I had another pan of relish burbling away on the stove.
Courgette and capsicum this time.
 While that did it's thing in the kitchen, I made three orange butterflies for the RSC.
 I wasn't sure I would be able to find enough orange for this months blocks, and was amazed to find three of them hiding amid my scraps and larger off cuts.
Once that was done and the completed blocks were tucked away safely in their box, I turned to my other scrap project.
My flip flop scraps are growing. Yesterday before work I had pressed the most recent seams and prepared the blocks for the next row of fabrics. They were sewn on this morning, while the relish continued to bubble away.
I even had time to tuck them away into a new box before I had to return to the kitchen.
So, about the box. When I visited Janice last year I noted that she had some very pretty boxes with fabrics and things stashed away in them.
They looked so lovely, I wanted me some of those. So I started to visit the dollar stores and now have just enough for my projects....well, maybe I'll need a couple more! LOL
 I fell in love with this one, those pretty greeny blue feathers will keep my flip flop scraps tidily tucked away.
Here are the others, all tidily piled in the corner, keeping their projects safe.
The blue feathers fit under the pink seahorse. It's a little larger than I realised, but thats OK, those scrappy blocks will become quite big.
Sew, with that comleted I headed back to the kitchen to find my relish ready to go into hot jars.
I now have nine jars cooling in the kitchen. 
This afternoon I plan to spend in the sitting room, I might invite Sir David Attenborough and the Natural World to join me as I work on this months secret Christmas project.
But before I do that, I just remembered I promised that I would share my I Stitch block for February.
Did I tell you that the name of the finished quilt will be Wish You Well.
I have again used my precious Fig Tree Fabrics off cuts and left overs. I don't think I'll get away with using just leftovers and had a dig through my stash of figgy fabrics and pulled out some fat quarters to add to the pile.
This project and it's wee collection of fabrics lives in the poppy box, under the pink one where the finished butterflies are hibernating.
Typical, just as I'm about to move out of this seat, she moves in!
Too bad kitty kat! My hip is sore and it's time to move!

Monday 3 February 2020

15 Minutes a day.

As you know I have been focussing my 15 minutes on the mornings before work. It is such a nice way to begin the day, even if I do get odd looks when I forget to dethread before I leave the house. LOL
This morning it was at the post office when I was checking the PO Box. LOL I was covered in threads. LOL
My morning project continues to be my flip flop scraps quilt, which is progressing nicely.
Even with mishaps like this....
Not one, not two, but three matching fabric pieces all lined up!
Rip, rip, rip!
At least it was an easy fix.
I now have the beginnings of the correct number of blocks and just need to keep on adding strips of five, until they are all used up.
It's easy mindless sewing to do in the mornings. 
Each day last week  I achieved my goal of a minimum of 15 minutes. I was also able to squeeze in some time on Saturday. 
Before I stitch was delivered.
More about that another time.
Sunday was a busy day in the kitchen. 
 When these tomatoes and their friends became a huge pan of Possums pickles.
Possum is the nicname of a friends mum, and this is her recipe, hence, Possums pickles.
They are YUMMY! 
As I still had bowl of  tomatoes sitting in the pantry I also made a big pan of pasta sauce, for the freezer.
It's good to have a taste of summer on a cold winter night.
I'm off to  link up with A life in pieces blog, then it's time for some secret Christmas stitching.