Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Boozy Weekend!

Unfortunately (!) none of the booze has, as yet, been consumed by me.

It has become apparent in recent days that Xmas is creeping nearer.  I adore Xmas but I hate the fact that the shops have already got seasonal food and advent calendars and such like in stock.  That said it hasn't prevented me preparing some Christmas treats.

During a run one lunchtime last week myself and a friend came across a Sloe bush (can't remember if its a Hawthorn or Blackthorn) and so Friday lunchtime saw us out with plastic bags picking sloes.  And so, after freezing them, Xmas treat experiment one commenced on Sunday afternoon.

And now I have my first ever bottles of sloe gin and sloe vodka doing whatever they do and being agitated daily for the first week.

Experiment two is my first ever attempt at making a Xmas cake.  And no simple fruit cake for me! I just couldn't resist this recipe on The Pink Whisk blog.

It smells lovely after just one day, if I remember rightly its got to soak for 6 weeks.  For this first week it needs stirring everyday.  It's going to take a lot of will power not to keep sampling the fruit!

Hopefully these treats will be successfully completed by Xmas Eve. 

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Squishy Loveliness

I adore coming home and find out some yarn I have ordered has been delivered.  Especially when on opening the packaging you are greeted by...

(which isn't quite how it looked as there were a couple of stitch markers attached to the bow but I removed them before I thought to take a photo). 

And then it just gets better and better when you open the package...

All the yarn is from an online shop called Five Moons

The pinky orange laceweight is for a lacy scarf I've bookmarked on Ravelry as I'm really enjoying knitting lace at the mo.  And the mini skeins of double knitting wool is going towards a French knitting project that has been a UFO for 22 or maybe even as much as 24 years and has been worked on by myself and both my sisters (obviously with very short attentions spans) over the years.  Hopefully when my sister comes to visit me in a couple of weeks she'll bring it with her and we can figure out how much more there is to do (and I'll get some photos for the blog too).

Monday, 19 September 2011

Stitch and Unstitch

Considering a lot of my weekend was (pleasureably) used up by a curry night with work colleagues and a shopping trip to Swindon (a suprisingly good place to shop) I have achieved a lot this weekend and I squeezed in a Saturday afternoon nap!

I finished off the quilting of the technicolour baby quilt with in the ditch quiting in the border.  I wasn't sure if this was entirely necessary, especially when unpicking at least half the quilting due loopy stitching on the reverse (must remember to actually delint my machine once in a while and replace the quilting needle more frequently!).  But, now I've seen this picture on the big screen it was definitely worth doing it and doing it properly. I really love this quilt.

I also (finally) finished the quilting on my log cabin quilt, which has been ongoing for over a year but got waylaid by baby quilts and gifts.

I'm now looking forward(!) to a week of handstitching binding and sewing in ends, as well as trying to do some significant progress on the lacy scarf.

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Almost Hexies - A Crafting Review

Been a bit quiet on here as I have been having some work done on my flat and consequently felt a bit guilty crafting.  And then last weekend, when I had lots of crafting time and got the squiggles done, I found I'd forgotten to bring my camera - there will be a sudden burst of photos in the nearish future showcasing my house improvements and craft achievements (barring the knitting which I have been doing obsessively but is destined to be a family present in the winter).

For now I'm going to have a little craft retrospective and update everyone with my slow progress on my hand sewn tumbling blocks quilt.

It hasn't grown much but I've just started on the third row, having added about half a rows worth of blocks.  To give a sense of scale (and to explain why its folded over) this quilt is destined to be suitable for at least a double bed, possibly a kingsize bed.  I have a cunning plan to increase the size of this quilt rapidly...at least two or three rows (possibly as many as five) have already been completed and sewn together.  These are currently somewhere in my mum's house so I have put a plea in with her to track them down and send them to me and then I can get a real feel for how far I have got with this quilt.  In optimistic hope I'm starting to try and figure out how it should be quilted and planning in a trip to buy backing fabric.  Judging on current progress that trip may not be until 2014 but you never know!

Monday, 5 September 2011

Kindle Cover Take 2

In one of those weird happenings I managed to loose my sparkly Kindle cover in a B&B room a few weeks ago. Annoying though this was it has give me the opportunity to (a) try making a better fitting Kindle cover and (b) buy and use a gorgeous fat quarter of fabric.

Unfortunately the tutorial I used before has disappeared but a bit of thinking, measuring and seeking inspiration seemed to do the trick.

I seem to have mostly failed with part a, it fits width ways but is too long and saggy and the bottom. I have decided that off centre buttons are going to be my Kindle cover trademark.
But it is most definitely a gorgeous fat quarter and a beautiful coordinating mother of pearl button, all purchased from my restrained shopping trip at the Festival of Quilts.

Speaking of the FoQ I have found the site of the lady who made an absolutely stunning quilted version of the Bayeux Tapestry - Pam Holland's Bayeux Tapestry.  I'm glad to have found this as the FoQ catalogue seemed somewhat light on info about this amazing quilt.

And while giving my Kindle a new protective wrap I decided to personalise the Kindle too ...

Think the zebra print goes sooo well with the oriental print fabric!!!!!