Friday, 31 January 2014

Accumulating UFO's

I'm finding it very hard to concentrate these days.  I have started so many projects and not finished one this past month!!  I have been hand-quilting my "summer in the park" quilt this week and that has taken two full days but it's done now and I just have to do the binding, hooray!!

I also cut lots of fq's up last week to make a little boy blanket.  I've been admiring my cut rectangles all week but have been putting off actually piecing it until I get the hand-quilting done.........I'm really trying not to be a quilter with 15,000 UFO's!  However, I couldn't resist and put it together on wednesday afternoon, it's a very simple design, lots of bright spring colours, perfectly suited to the little one I'm making it for.

My poor little Economy Block-Along quilt came to a standstill 2 weeks ago when I couldn't find the fabric I wanted to complete it.  I had been using fussy cuts from Riley Blakes "The Simple Life" and I LOVED IT but you can only use so many of the same pictures repeated.  I had used each one about 5 or 6 times and any little girl would absolutely adore them.  You can just imagine how their imagination would run wild looking at all the little scenes.  Falling asleep while making up stories to go with them...........   OR maybe it was just me, maybe I was bored with the repetition and the fabric is far too cute to get bored of!  So, I went on the hunt and found a similar but different Riley Blake pattern called "Little Red Riding Hood".  It was on a white background too and had a few different scenes!  I also came across another gorgeous print by Riley Blake called "Country Girl"............ah for goodness sake, they were getting cuter and cuter..........but this one, I couldn't find in Ireland or the UK!  It seems that it's brand new and only in the US so far.  I bit the bullet and bought half a yard of both fabrics and guess what, they arrived in just 5 days!  I opened up this Happy Mail yesterday.

Aren't they gorgeous!!!

The pictures on both fabrics are perfect for fussy cutting into my blocks!  Watch this space for more progress! 

So, I'm browsing the net this morning - for fear something mega happened overnight and I might have missed it when I notice someone has pinned something I previously pinned and forgotten.  Oh man, I want to make that too!  How did I forget about such a cute project!  Then, I spy a stained glass project that a fellow quilter is making - it's just stunning and I remember how I loved doing the stained glass block in my sample quilt and suddenly I want to add one of those to my list too! So today, I'm giving myself a good talking to, telling myself to cop on, knuckle down and finish the current quilts and start making an orderly To Do List instead of starting everything at once!  Let's see if that happens.........!

My two little helpers watching the "thorn" (needle) going up and down!

Monday, 13 January 2014

Cinders has lost her work ethic!

This last weekend, Cinderella (me) went to the ball........... now in the fairytale, Cinders gets all her work done before she leaves but me, I did nothing, didn't sew a stitch from tuesday night on because I had to get my hair, my nails, my make-up done.........these things take time when you're used to hanging around the house in your baggies!  But it was so worth it, we had a blast at the Tullamore Formal!  Check us out..........

The weekend didn't stop there either, Saturday night was Panto night with my best boy, Ben!  We were both hoarse from yelling "Oh yes he is" and we laughed so much.  I had to quieten him down a few times because he finds it all sooooooo hilarious! It's not a great picture but I can never resist taking one for our memory book!

So after spending the day with friends yesterday and having a lovely, scrummy dinner cooked for us, I finally took out my sewing on this rainy Monday morning!  I didn't get a whole lot done because let's just say my energy levels are still recovering but I my "Summer in the Park" quilt top finished.  I added a red inside border and then a black/white scrappy border outside that again.  I really like the red with it.  Gives it a bit of "umpf"!  What do you think?

 Last week, I added a few more squares to my Economy Block Quilt-along project.  I'm loving how this is turning out.  I was going to leave it at this size (30 blocks) but have decided to carry on because it's so cute, I've just been trying to source the new fabric I want for the centre blocks.........which I did today with a little help from some Quilty friends!  (Thanks Rosie & Fiona & Beatrice).  I've been really using some mad prints in this one and I am still in love with the eclectic effect it gives, I hope it's still appealing when I've added more blocks!

 Sooooooooooooooo I was going to carry on with some handstitching I started a few weeks ago......... this gorgeous little embroidery sampler but I seem to have mislaid it in one of my cleaning frenzies.  I know it will show up in a nice safe spot but there goes my plans for this evening!  I may just have to have a lazy night with a glass of wine! 

 I hope you're enjoying seeing the little projects I'm working on, if anyone is interested, please feel free to post your blog address in the comments below, I'd love to check out your work!

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Happy Wednesday!

I remember in school my sixth class teacher was a bit of an odd man.  He was the type with hair growing out of his nose, wore socks in his leather sandles and had an opinion on everything.  One of these opinions was that you should never buy a car on any day except a Wednesday.  Something to do with Mondays and Tuesdays being days that the salesman would be recovering from the weekend, Thursday being payday which meant their mind wasn't on the job and Friday and Saturday they were preparing to for a wild weekend again!  Obviously, I was a very impressionable 11year old because ever since, Wednesday has been my happy day!

So with that in mind, I bringing you my news on Wednesday...... For those who haven't already spied me on Facebook, I'm so happy to be able to tell you that I have joined the team of The Quilt Shop, Tuam.  I'll be taking care of the facebook page (go on, scroll down the page, you'll see my little intro and my big ugly mug, you know you want to) and can't wait to share all the exciting things happening over the coming year, bringing the items on the shelves to your livingrooms/offices and beyond!!!! Ooooh, I think the power is going to my head!!  So if you haven't already, have a peek at the page, hit "like" and you can be part of our little community!

Sunday, 5 January 2014

I've started my Economy Block Quilt-along!!

So, Instagram has been taken over lately with posts about the Economy Block Quilt-Along.  I could have ignored them and carried on with the plans I did have for this month but these were far too cute to ignore.  It helped that the sample block that kept popping up happened to use some of the fabric that I have in my stash right now.  Instagram was basically telling me to forget my plans and get cutting these blocks!

I want to say a great big thank you to Red Pepper Quilts for popping up the tutorial on this block, she gives super clear instructions and her choice of fabrics are so diverse and funky together, it made it very endearing! For anyone who may find themselves inclined......... click here for all the instructions!

I pulled a heap of fabric for my first 6 blocks and chopped and changed until I was happy with a few combinations. 

 I'd like to change direction with my next pile of colours for the next six........and mix them all up, so this current layout, isn't how it will stay!  I'll have to see what grabs me! Most of these are from the a mix of ranges such as "Marmalade" and "The Simple Life" which I bought from Fililis, an Irish online fabric shop, during the summer, including the fussy cut centre blocks, some are from Connecting Threads in the U.S.  I love the centre square fabric, it's the cutest, most whimsical print I have seen in ages!

So here they are, my first 6!  They are 5.5" unfinished........I'll need a heap to make a decent sized quilt but I am totally in love with them so looking forward to tomorrow already so I can find some time to do some more...........

In the meantime, the new episode of Sherlock is on!

Thursday, 2 January 2014

I'm still here!!

Gosh, I've been fairly mute for over a month!  Very unlike me.  My sister reminded me this week that I was called Parrot as a child (thanks to my Uncle Sean) because I never stopped talking back then.  Not a lot has changed in recent years but I have been fairly low-key this past month.  It can be a strange time around the holidays, whether you join in the celebrations or not, it tends to be a busy month.  Lots of extra traffic everywhere you go, a crazy need to stock the fridge and buy in anything you might possible need or want for weeks on end despite the fact that the shops barely close for a full 24 hours these days!

My panic buying was a last minute trip to The Quilt Shop to stock up on some fabric so I could get my head down and get something accomplished.  Recently I have been finishing up lots of little projects and I was excited to get started on something new.  It took me ages to figure out what I wanted to make but the deal was sealed when I went to the shop and picked up this fab jelly roll of funky black and white prints (along with my other goodies).  The greens and blues were what I went to buy, with a plan already in mind, but when I found the black/white combo I changed my mind, it was just asking me to cut it!

I found a really cute tutorial to follow online to make this super simple pattern which is called "Summer in the Park".  It came together very fast because you effectively make 6 blocks at a time!  I love the black and white contrast - it's very striking and really shows off the design.  I took a few pictures because it's very different from every angle.  You can see an x's and o's pattern as well as boxes or diamonds!

It grew a little after these pictures were taken but I decided to keep it at a generous lap-quilt size.  I'm going to add a small border but I'm generally keeping it simple because I think I've got my sewing mojo back and want to get on to my next project.  Stay tuned....

Ooooh but before I go, check out my bargains from the one day sale at The Quilt Shop..... it was so hard to keep myself reigned in and not go wild in there!  Check out the other jelly roll I's full of floral prettiness, I need to choose a really cute pattern for that one if anyone has any suggestions!

In the meantime, have you started any of your 2014 projects yet?  Do you have a list as long as your arm?  Are you trying something you've never done before?  Care to share and inspire?  I'd love to hear your plans!