If that was Christmas, we've had it!

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

I've become a bit slow on the blogging front again, but with all the excitemen I haven't a clue what day it is!

This year I've had several Christmases with different friends and parts of my family. I'm pleased to report that Santa is not on Facebook or Twitter and is therefore still under the impression that I have been a good girl! So I got several fantastic presents, and some money which I have spent on underwear and craft goodies!

Am also loving my hire car - so much fun being able to drive myself around wherever and whenever I want.

Anyway, on to a gift I gave. You have seen this before, but it was finished off and given to my mum.

It's the peacock art piece I did at a workshop with the Embroiderers' Guild.

Hayley mounted it on to a canvas for me so it is now a work of art for my mum's wall.

She was rather impressed!

In other news, the Japanese hexagon quilt is coming along nicely and I am pleased to report that I have very nearly finished all the pieces. Then to sew all 298 of them together ...


Happy birthday Hayley!

Monday, 19 December 2011

Today is my good friend Hayley's birthday and in the spirit of crafting and needlework here is the card I made for her.

Paper patchwork is just as much fun as fabric pathcwork, but much quicker! I still go a bit wonky though!

So simple to do - squares fo different DSP (retired Springtime Vintage and Newsprint in this case), stuck on to a plain piece of card then cut out in the Big Shot with the Top Note Die.

Then finished off with a couple of buttons and a ribbon made from the Victoria Crochet Ribbon.

We're celebrating Hayley's ageing this evening with food and booze.


The Owl Punch - not just for owls!

Friday, 16 December 2011

Owls are too cute, but did you know the Stampin' Up! Owl Punch is also great for making other creatures?

Like penguins!

Heather, who is Helen's sister, had asked me to make a card for a friend who was moving to a new job. "She likes penguins and music" was the brief, so out came the Owl Punch et voila, penguins!

So easy and so much fun to make.

I am reliably informed that she loved the card and I'm a bit gutted I was so well prepared with my Christmas cards this year, otherwise I'd have done penguin ones!


A 70th birthday card

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

This week, Helena, the Chairman of the West Yorkshire Federation of Women's Institutes, celebrated her 70th birthday.

I was tasked with making the card so I decided to do one similar to my nanna and grandad's 60th wedding anniversary one.

This design just works for me and it's nice and easy to achieve.

I decorated with Pearls to add some glamour.

Here's to many happy returns for Helena!


Japanese quilted wall hanging - Finished!

Sunday, 11 December 2011

I got restless the other day and finished off my Japanese quilted wall hanging.

It is finished off with the sashiko quilting to make the clouds and add some detail on the waves.

In my tradition of not bothering to measure and cut things properly it is a little wonky and not quite square, but I still love it.

My mum bought me a similar kit with a lucky cat (maneki neko) so I have that to do over Christmas.


Christmas gift bags

Friday, 9 December 2011

I've been super organised this year and have all except one of my gifts bought/made and wrapped.

Once again I have kept the packaging simple with brown paper for those that are wrapped and brown paper bags for more awkward things to go in.

Here are the sacks, using the gift labels I made for Buns & Roses WI the other week.

Simple but effective!


Christmas stocking

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

As well as teaching at our Buns & Roses WI Christmas Crafts workshop last week I also managed to get started on one of the other projects - a Christmas stocking.

The sewing machine came out over the weekend to finish i off and it's now ready to hang on my dad's fireplace when I get home for Christmas.

Lots of hand applique here, and it has my usual level of wonkiness as nothing was properly pinned or measured.

Hope Santa comes and leaves a few gifts in it for me!


Christmas Crafts workshop for Buns & Roses WI

Friday, 2 December 2011

Last night was our Christmas Crafts workshop at Buns & Roses WI and I was helping the girls make a Christmas card and gift tag.

I focused on the new Stampin' Up! DSP Holly Berry, which is just yummy. I don't normally go crazy about Christmas things but I really love the designs in this range.

Here's the card everyone made. I CASE'd the design from my talented friend Vicky.

And this is the tag, utilising more of the DSP and the Notably Ornate stamp set.

Quick, simple but effective - the way Christmas should be!


Japanese quilting

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

I am still busy crafting, promise!

Most of the things I can't show you as they are Christmas presents, and you never know who's reading!

Last weekend was the Knitting & Stitching Show, and I was there for three, yes THREE days. Once to help out on the WI stand and twice for some shopping and workshops with my mum.

Am delighted to say that I did not break the bank. Most of what I bought was Christmas presents for others and I chose some for mum to send on to Santa to bring to me. As long as I stay good for another few weeks!

One of the things I did buy myself (of which there were only two and one was paid for with my pocket money from my nan) was a Japanese quilting kit.

I fell in love with it and was going to save it as a project to do over Christmas, but I got restless last night so out came my machine!

All the fabrics were pre-cut, except for the moon which I had to cut and turn, so it only took me about an hour to put this together.

I just need to finish it off now with a bit of sashiko - Japanese hand quilting.

Then it will become ... something. Probably a wall hanging. Unless anyone has other suggestions?


Quilting as performance art

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Oops, I seem to have gotten a bit lax with my blogging again. And I was doing so well! Life must be getting in the way!

As usual, lots going on, but my quilt is coming along nicely.

I have now completed three and a half rows and still have plenty of hexagons ready to be stitched on.

It is 18 hexagons wide at the top, so every other row is 17 wide.

I've not yet figured out how many rows there will be in total, but at at a guess of 18 I would need 315 hexagons.

There are two reasons I have made such excellent progress recently.

Firstly, I spent the whole of Sunday in bed with Helen working on it while watching Warehouse 13.

Secondly, this:

Hayley and I used it in a spot of performance art while having a drink in the pub the other week. She tells the story better on her blog: Hayley Mills-Styles.

Tomorrow I'm off to the Knitting and Stitching Show in Harrogate to help on the West Yorkshire Federation of Women's Institutes stand (it's E9 - come and say hello if you are at the show anytime!).

I'm back there on Sunday with my mum, so next week I should have more regular updates. For a while at least!


Flirtatious fabric accessories

Saturday, 12 November 2011

And more fabric projects!

Today's items use the Flirtatious Stampin' Up! fabric, which has three patterns - two in pinks and one in purple. Yum!

First up, a Suffolk puff brooch - possibly the quickest and easiest stitching project in the world!

Made from just a circle of fabric with a running stitch all around they edge, you can literally make these in 15 minutes.

They have loads of other uses as well as brooches - stick them on headbands, hair clips, or anything at all!

Also, some sort of zipped case. It's completely the wrong size for a pencil case (I didn't bother to measure or plan - I just stitched away!) but would be quite useful for makeup.

On one side is a hexagon patchwork flower.

And the other has a patchwork triangle pattern.

I may go a little quiet for a while now as I'm about to start working on Christmas presents, but I'll try to update on other things!


Beau Chateau fabric birds

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Another fabric project today!

I made these two little birdies from the Stampin' Up! Beau Chateau fabric and showed them to some of my SU family at our team training last month.

Here they are sat on my sewing kit.

They look rather inquisitive.

I even made them a nest from a witch's broomstick!

A great little project to work on of an evening and I might have to rustle up some more. I have visions of them sitting on branches as a funky mobile, or just hiding around my room.

I've used up my first pack of this fabric now. Best go order some more!


Another Christmas tree decoration

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Just stopping by for a quickie today - another Christmas tree decoration.

This time I used the Stampin' Up! Candy Cane Christmas fabric and decorated with sequins and beads.

Don't forget the FREE tutorial is over there >>>



Saturday, 5 November 2011

Hehe, it's ok, not real live ones!

These zombies are made of felt and they were our Buns & Roses workshop this month.

They're really cute actually, and not in the slightest bit scary. I blame that on the felt and bling!

He is my favourite. I love his dangly eye (although I didn't do mine correctly!) and the way his arms are kinda lurching.

Pumpkin has brains coming out of his head. Yikes!

I put loops on so Hayley can hang them from her Christmas tree, although I might have to keep them to go on mine!


Petite Pennant Punch ... Not just for bunting

Friday, 4 November 2011

Honestly! You can make flowers too!

See! How cute?! It could also be a windmill!

The DSP here is the new First Edition range, which being newsprint is right up my street.

Elegant Eggplant Scallop Dots Ribbon is just one of the many new products for this year.

And the brads are from the new Antique Brads pot, which are FAB!

Just another card to show why coordinating stamp sets and punches are so wonderful.



Thursday, 3 November 2011

Yes, I'm still in love with bunting. Must get round to making myself some proper bunting (Did I tell you I have a new sewing machine? A story foe another day!).

This card is another made at Julie's training, where we went to town with the Pennant Parade stamp set and matching Petite Pennants Punch.

Extra dimension thanks to the Perfect Polka Dots Embossing Folder and flowers from the Boho Blossoms Punch. And Rhinestones for bling!


Blackwork bookmark

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

A bit of a sneak peek for you today!

Later this month, the West Yorkshire Federation of Women's Institutes is again hosting a stand at the Knitting & Stitching Show in Harrogate.

I have been helping to organise our stand and managed to talk myself into designing and making a kit to sell to visitors.

This is what I came up with ...

A blackwork sampler bookmark on aida band.

I hope people buy it and can understand my instructions and charts!


A little Something for Christmas

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Back to the Christmas prep today - not long to go!

My cards this year will be focusing on the Something For Christmas stamp and the Holly Berry DSP.

I've also gone a bit crazy for embossing powder!

First up, a quick and simple card. I stamped in Cherry Cobbler and used Clear Embossing Powder. A bit of matting and it's good to go.

And then, some Gold Embossing Powder and the Holly Berry DSP. These patterned papers are gorgeous, and some even have glitter! I shaped them with the Top Note Die on my Big Shot.

Did I mention how much I love heat embossing powder?! Great effect.

Now to write my list for Santa. I have been really good this year. Honestly!


Yet another wedding card

Monday, 31 October 2011

My friend Hayley seems to have gone to dozens of weddings this year. It's keeping me on my toes coming up with new cards for her to give to the happy couples!

Here's the latest one ...

I kept the colour scheme neutral with Very Vanilla and Crumb Cake and added some bling using the Gold Embossing Powder. I also used my Big Shot and the Square Lattice Embossing Folder to give texture.

The gold birdie is holding a tag featuring a sentiment from Tiny Tags and punched out with the matching Jewellery Tag Punch.

Swirls are from the Scribbles Swirls Die and the flowers are stamped in Versamark with the now retired Punch Potpourri hostess set, and embossed. The gold powder works brilliantly even on the fine details. The flowers are punched with the matching Boho Blossoms Punch.

I am reliably informed that the proceedings went off without a hitch and Hayley promises no more weddings until January!


Beau Chateau raggy bag

Sunday, 30 October 2011

You know when you make something that you just absolutely love and are so proud of? This is it!

I've seen loads of these raggy bags in blogland, made using the Stampin' Up! fabric and the Scallop Square die on the Big Shot so I just had to give it a go.

It takes 19 squares of the fabric for the outside, and 19 in a plain fabric for the lining. Also, 19 squares of batting to give it a bit of extra weight.

Each square is quilted on its own, then lined up in rows to make the basic bag template.

Then simply pull it all together and stitch up the sides.

Add handles ...

And a fastening loop. I stitched a press stud on for easy opening and closing and a decorative button.

I just love my new bag! I'm using it to carry around my craft stuff (it's full of quilted hexagons at the moment).

I feel more quilting and bags coming on - the Big Shot really does make sewing projects so quick and easy.


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