Sunday 24 November 2013

{big} city girl QAL - London

 way back in the summer aylin and amy asked me to be part of their new QAL - {big} city girl QAL and i jumped at the chance.

so here i am, the final leg of the QAL with my home capital city London.

whilst i am from leeds in the north of england i lived in london for 16 years and it will always in some ways be home.

i really couldn't decide which landmark to use in my block. there are so many to choose from - tower bridge, big ben, houses of parliament, st paul's cathedral, buskingham palace, the gherkin and even the meandering river thames.

but there was one that stood out for that is a modern renowned landmark, the london eye. i used to travel up to the centre of london by train regularly and my heart always skipped a beat when the big wheel came into view. 

so here is my interpretation of one of my favourite london landmarks, the drunkard path way.

you will need:

for each circle: 4 dark circle quarters, radius 2"
4 low volume outers with a 1.5" radius cut out.

Using a 2” inner circle and a 1.5” concave outer piece make each quarter piece. Check out this great tutorial if you are struggling with making your drunkards patch pieces. Sew together each quarter and trim the combined square to 4”.

Repeat to make 6 drunkard path circles.

In addition you will need a 4x4” square for the centre and 4 2x4”corner pieces. Sew the 3 rows together as illustrated below and then sew each row together. Finally cut and sew a 3x11” border along the bottom.
Now for a little hand embroidery detail to sew the frame of your London Eye. Sew with a running stitch from capsule to capsule and across to opposite capsules. Use chain stitch to sew the support posts.

And there you are done! 

please do add any make to the {big} girl city QAL flickr group and do catch up on all the other wonderful city blocks from around the world if you missed out on visiting them.

01.09. Aylin - Nilya2011 from Germany with Berlin and Istanbul
08.09. Alyce - SewBlossomHeart from Japan with Tokyo
15.09. Julianna - Sewing under Rainbow from Poland with Warsaw
22.09. Sil - silort from Brazil with Brasilia
29.09. Sylvie - -Vivie- from France with Paris
06.10. Marit - Sy-elsk-lev from Norway with Aalesund
13.10. Amy- During Quiet Time from USA with Boston
20.10. Jane - Quiltjane from Australia with Sydney
27.10. Lotje - Lotje M from The Netherlands with Delft

03.11. Rachel - wooden spoon from New Zealand with Wellington
10.11. Annabella - liferichpattern from Morocco with Marrakech
17.11. Felicity - felicity.quilts from Canada with Vancouver (you are here)
24.11. Karen - blueberry4park from UK with London

Friday 22 November 2013

:: number 2 ::

i got a little feeling of what it must be like to win an oscar or the like yesterday when i discovered that my advent calendar kit was voted as number 2 in BT lifestyle's best advent calendars

we will just sidle past the question of who actually goes on the BT lifestyle website to see it shall we?
actually i think plenty of people surprisingly have as i have been printing these kits ad infinitum as alice of backstitch will testify.
with regular weekly emails of "help, need more red Klona!"

what makes me particularly excited more than anything is the thought of so many people a week on Sunday hanging their advent calendars, filling with them with their choice of treats until xmas eve.

i thought i had printed my last panels last week. i even told alice so. but no, with just 8 days to go until the start of advent orders are still coming in fast and furious.

and panic upon panic...alice has run out of klona crimson! i've run her dry!

thankfully i have managed to secure another source who have guaranteed me delivery tomorrow...printing on sunday...mailing on monday...happy people making kits on tuesday.

i may have ordered just enough if anyone else still want one...shout now because this really is the final order.

and if you don't fancy making one up i do have one available to buy ready made. i guess i felt i was missing out on the sewing up fun and wanted to join in. anyway it's available here and the kits are available here.

Thursday 21 November 2013

:: barn quilts ::

 my life has been opened up to the wonderful world of barn quilts.
i had never heard of barn quilts until i read about them here today.
i know...where have i been?

i have always had a thing for american barns, ever since i was old enough to hop across the ocean to visit my family in connecticut but i have never come across barn quilts there.
having flicked over to the barn quilt trail website (yes there is such a thing) i did in fact see that nowhere in CT was registered on the barn quilt trail.
this made me relieved that i hadn't been going around there with my eyes shut but saddened that i will have to go further afield to find some.
i will however be rectifying the lack of barn quilts in CT by painting one on my aunt's barn next time i am there...

american barns are so evocative and full of life and by painting a quilt on one of the walls just adds to this.

i've posted a few of my favourite barn quilt photos here and have started a new pinterest board where there are more. i know...obsessed.

there is even a book on barn quilts...that's obviously now on my wishlist.

the question is was i on my own here with my ignorance of barn quilts or have i enlightened a few more of you too?

do share you favourite barn quilt photo if you have one.

Sunday 17 November 2013

lucky number...

thank you all for your feedback on hoop-la and glad you like it. it really is a gem of a book so if you do get it i am sure you won't be disappointed.

and with no further ado the winner of the mix tape screen printed hoop is...


I love the great ideas!! It would be so great to win!! Thanks for the giveaway! 

well done jenny and thank you all for entering.

Thursday 14 November 2013

:: annali ::

tuesday afternoon the doorbell rang...
it was this...

by last night it was this...

this is the latest collection for dashwood studios, the new uk based textile design company and this collection, called annali is by the talented stephanie thannhauser.

i was lucky enough to be sent some from the collection to make a quilt for them. i'd like to use the excuse that there was a short deadline on dashwood needing the quilt, for marketing purposes for the reason for the rapido making, but really it was down to it's irresistibility.

not only is the collection right up my alley, designs, colours, but the fabric itself is beautiful - really soft and light and i just couldn't wait to get sewing.
so sewing i did...until midnight last night.

as you can see from the top photograph, all the designs are really lovely but it is possibly the prints in the one colour designs that are most striking - perfect blenders for any project and would make wonderful dress-making fabrics too.

if you haven't come across dashwood before do check out their collections (this one is in store end of november). at the moment they are available here (see stockists bottom right) but i am sure it won't be long before they are more widespread.

in the meantime i am off to make a replica quilt as this one is on its way back to dashwood headquarters...sniff...

Wednesday 13 November 2013

Hoop-la Book Review and Giveaway

if you are new to my blog and are here as part of kirsty's hoop-la blog hop then hello and welcome!

i was thrilled when kirsty asked me to be part of her blog hop. i have long been a fan of kirsty's and her work having 'met' her over the internet when i first entered this wonderful world of ours.

kirsty is one of those effortlessly clever people who produces things that are so quirky and original and, as this book demonstrates, is not short on ideas.
hoop-la is a gem of a book that incorporates {well over} a hundred ideas and projects to do with embroidery hoops.
whilst the book is not only a visual delight with all of kirsty's fab fun designs but it is a fantastic manual too with pages upon pages of templates to use and detailed instructions on how to carry out all the different skills. i love all her 
::top tip:: 
ideas too.

so embroidery hoops are for, well, embroidery? aren't they?
think again! kirsty shows in this wonderful book that this little humble piece of equipment can be used in oh so many different ways and decorated in an endless variety of ways.

my favourite ideas are the ones that make the hoop into a functional piece, rather than merely as a frame for a piece of art...although those are obviously all awesome too. 

i love the chalkboard idea...and the noughts and crosses game...the vase of flowers, although you may not want to put water in them...the pen holder.

with this theme in mind i made my own little homage to hoop-la advent calendar pocket decorated in washi tape...ok i should make the other 24, and it would probably look rather cool if i did, but i just love how again you can take something quite simple and make something very striking.

i love when kirsty's thinking outside the box has resulted in more than one frame being the whole picture like the giraffe...the conversation...the hot air balloon.

so the giveaway! kirsty is very kindly offering one of you lovely readers a chance to win one of her fab frames from the book. being a screen printer the one i was instantly drawn to is the mix tape screen print. it's so cool!

all you need to do for a chance to win this frame is to leave a comment here. it is open to anywhere in the world and please feel free to tweet and the rest about it! i will be drawing a winner sometime on sunday 17 november.

thanks again for stopping by and if you have missed the rest of the blog hop (it finishes on friday) do check out and catch up on the other posts right here. you may still be in with a chance of entering some of the other giveaways!

i hope this has given you a good insight into this really marvellous book (put it on your xmas list) you will never look at an embroidery hoop in the same way again!

and i will leave you with this really cool little video that kirsty made. if what i have said hasn't persuaded you that you need a copy, then this really will!

Monday 11 November 2013

:: selvedge ::

it's that time of year again...xmas fair season...where i can normally be seen galavanting off all over the place at various fairs around the country.

it's an unusual year this year however, due to other work and personal commitments, as i am actually only going to be out and about at one fair. 

i am going to be exhibiting at the selvedge winter fair at chelsea old town hall on fri and sat 29 and 30 november.

coincidentally this is one of my favourite fairs to exhibit at and also to shop at. it is full of beautiful handmade products that make exceptional gifts. i'm hoping to conquer my complete xmas/chanukah list whilst i am there!

if you are in the neighbourhood and fancy a great day out do come along and as a little incentive to come over to my stand i am offering all my lovely blog friends 10% off at the fair. just make yourself known to me quoting {fair13}.

right, i'm off to make some more goodies for my stand and hope to see lots of you then!

ps if there's anything in particular you are wanting to buy do let me know and i can make sure i have it or put on one side for you. x

Friday 8 November 2013

:: normal ::

another week, another set of projects...

it's amazing how much time you feel you have when things get back to normal. when i say normal i obviously don't mean normal, but rather back to routine. it's never normal round these parts.

having had our routine disrupted for 2 weeks worth of half term, i am always amazed by how much time i feel i have when the kids first go back to school.

without constant interruptions i have had a successful week getting through the long list of projects I am working on, all of which will be revealed in the up-coming weeks. I actually haven't finished any of them, but it has been fun having time to work on all of them.

a good productive happy week round these parts. no doubt next week will be back to the only normal i know about...normal mayhem.

hope whatever your normal is, it has been a good one. 


ps watch out for the middle of next week when one of these projects will be finished and be featured on a blog tour!