Monday, 28 February 2011


Hmm, not best pleased with how my label turned out with the Image Maker.  It's not the lightness of the text, -that can be fixed- it's how stiff & cardboardy it's turned the fabric.  No, this just won't do. 
I've ordered some (expensive) & oddly named Bubble Jet Set 2000.  It conjures up images of retro animated video games, not fabric printing.  But I have seen good results from this & I've got a bee in my bonnet  now so we'll try that out when it comes. 

I can't bear for just a post about failure, so in happy news here is a lovely Lupin just springing into life.  I love the way it's such a miniature version of what it will become in a few months.  Those little Aubretia flowers in the background are setting it off a treat too.  I feel better already.

Sunday, 27 February 2011

Phone Case

I'm pretty pleased with how this has turned out.

I added a pocket on the front for my headphones.

I'm going to add a clip-on wrist strap.  I'll need to put that on  another day as I need to buy a metal clip.

Lots happening

I finished my Moda Bliss cushion cover yesterday.  I'm not sure I actually like it tho'.

I do like the back however & I am quite proud of how well the zip turned out.

I also got quite far with my baby quilt.  I decided to hand quilt some hearts and circles on it.  Just the binding to go now.

And after a little prompting I decided to have a go at making my first quilt label. 

Also I've cut out the bits to make a new iPhone case, this one's going to have a zip.  I've got a bit of time this afternoon so I'm going to try to get that done.

Saturday, 26 February 2011

I love Saturday

This is what Saturday morning looks like.  I have the whole day stretched before me to do whatever I wish ...bliss.

Friday, 25 February 2011

Another work in progress

Distracted once more from the rugging, there's a baby quilt I need to finish in the next few weeks.  Here's my backing & binding fabrics, my wadding & thread.  Most importantly is the chocolate to sustain me whilst I work.

Here's the top, made with a Lily & Will Moda Charm pack & a charm pack of plain.  Not sure how I'm going to quilt it yet, or even if I'll do it by hand or machine.

Thursday, 24 February 2011


It's been a beautiful sunny day today.  I've spent all day planting these maiden (one year old) trees along a land boundary.  This little one is Blackthorn but I've also been planting beech, purple beech, hornbeam & holly.  A lovely native hedge that the wildlife will love & trees that will out-live me.  I love the thought of how long these little ones will be around & how big they'll be one day.

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Almost there...

I love starting new projects, I easily get very excited, obsessed and even addicted to things. I get all caught up in what I'm doing & new ideas keep me awake at night. 

Finishing stuff & seeing it through to the end however I find a little bit tough.  What is that all about?  Dunno, but this here rag rug is taking up a big corner of my bedroom when it could be making my floor look ever so lovely instead.  If only I would just pull out my finger (or rug hook rather) & FINISH THE THING! 

 My head tells me "Right that's it Erica, no more working on anything else until you have this rug finished", then it says "Hang on, this is what I do for fun, this isn't about being forced to work on the same project all week long". 

I could probably go on all evening having arguments in my head like a crazy woman.  I think seen as I'm having family to stay next week & need the room space, I need to just bite that bullet & crack on with the rug. 

Tuesday, 22 February 2011


Hmm, having a bit of a technological challenge in that I can't suss out how to get the photos off the new phone onto my PC.  So for today's post I thought I'd show a work in progress.

These balls are getting turned into a rag rug.  It's been almost a year in the making & I'm hoping it'll be done very soon.  Watch this space.

Monday, 21 February 2011


These little snowdrops look just perfect.  I wanted to capture them whilst they're still at their best as before I know it they'll be gone for another year.

I caught these little Vinca flowers quietly doing their thing in the corner earlier too.  I love the rich dark green colour of the foliage.
After a fairly mild day it seems to have turned a bit chilly tonight, -as I write I'm curled up on the sofa with a blanket and a hot water bottle! 

Last night I was sewing like the clappers to make this little pouch for my new iphone.  I get so mucked up at work that I need to keep it out of harms way.  It has a layer of wadding in the middle & a calico lining.  I'd really like to make a case with a zip opening and a pocket for headphones.  Possibly a clip too, so I can attach it to myself.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Saturday Night Sewing

This is a cushion cover that I've been making. 

It's a tiny version of a quilt I made as a Chrismas present for my youngest niece.  I was really happy with the finished quilt so thought I'd make myself a mini version using the leftover fabric.

This is the quilt:

It's not a great photo.  I'm just learning to take my time with photos.  I didn't even photograph the backing, which was a nice green daisy fabric. 

I hand quilted this one, using big utilitarian-type stitches in a neutral coloured Perle no. 8 thread.  I'm annoyed with myself now for doing such a rush job with the photo, because it's hard to see the quilting in the photo.

I'm also going to hand quilt the front panel of the cushion cover in the same thread, so it will be a proper mini-me version of the original quilt.

This is going to be the back of my cushion cover:

Mmmm, I love this fabric.  I got it at a discounted price from the Cath Kidston outlet shop in St. Neots.

As always, I had some issues with the zip.  I was trying to get all fancy with it.  After two sessions of unpicking/ripping in frustration, -which incidentally resulted in me actually breaking my stitch un-picker, I decided to just keep it simple.  I now think it looks better the way it is than when I was trying to get all showy-offy.  But I guess it's always good to try out new things, even if it does go a bit wrong & end in broken tools.  At least no fabric was wasted & I didn't break anything expensive this time.

Goodbye, Old Friend.

Yesterday was a very sad day.  My old friend here played her final tune & has said farewell to this world.  I like to think she has gone to live with all the ipods in the sky.

She's had a busy & hard life with me.  As you can see she is somewhat battered and bruised.  So I bear no resentment toward her, she has been a trusty & reliable friend to me for a long time.  She deserves some peace now.

I cannot live without an ipod though, I spend most of my working day alone & love to listen to podcasts and audio books whilst I work.  I have therefore been mulling over my options today.  The conclusion I have reached, seen as my phone has decided to keep switching itself off several times a day for no apparent reason, is to, maybe, go for the iPhone 4 & kill 2 birds with one stone.  It's an exciting prospect and I'm not sure if I can quite trust myself.  In the often repeated words of my Mum I "can't keep ought nice".  Which basically means I trash things quickly and am not especially careful.  I also have a job which involves a lot of dirt.  But I'm thinking, a good case, a good insurance policy. . . I can. . . can't I?

I've almost justified it!  Anyway I'm meeting a friend for lunch tomorrow & a look in the phone shops around town.  So we'll see if I come back home with a new friend tomorrow...  I'm sure it's what my dear old friend would have wanted after all...

Friday, 18 February 2011

Disappearing Nine Patch Baby Quilt

I made this quilt using a Moda "Punctuation" Charm Pack & added an extra few squares to increase the size a bit.  I am giving the quilt to a friend at her baby party tomorrow. 

She is expecting a boy in a few weeks.  I think with the blue Michael Miller "Garden Pindot" fabric I used as a backing it looks suitably boy-ish.

This is only the third quilt I have made, but the second using the disappearing nine patch design.  I love it because it looks much more complicated than it actually is & produces a great effect.

This is the first time I have machine-quilted.  It is a very simple staggered line, but was a little scary to do as I don't have a walking foot for my machine.  It turned out kind-of okay, but I can see how a walking foot would have made it better & easier.  I was quoted £45 to buy one for my machine, so I'm still weighing up whether to go for it or not.  My machine only cost £20!

All packaged up and ready to go.  This gorgeous wrapping paper is by Rachel Goodchild.

Fog won't put me off

I visited a garden I'd not been to since 2 weeks ago today.  What a difference that fortnight has made; the first thing I noticed were these precious little Irises.

After a while of looking quite grotty, the Hellebores are in full effect right now.  It's been quite foggy all day, but with all the new life springing up in the garden it hasn't put me off my stride.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

More proof!

It's been a gorgeous sunny day today & it really opened my eyes to all the colours that are starting to appear in nature.  This winter has been a harsh one so I am impatient for Spring & sunny days.

When I started work this morning I noticed these yellow Crocuses in the corner about to open.  As the day got brighter they opened their petals wide to the sun.  I think I feel similar to those little Croci when the sun comes out.

And look!  The first of the daffs in flower, -such an optimistic sign.  These early flowers have to be some of my favourites for the promise they offer of longer days that can be spent outdoors and the beginning of new life. 

Wednesday, 16 February 2011



I've been trying to convince myself it's Spring since around mid-January.  It may not quite be here yet but each day I feel it getting closer.  A week and a half ago I planted these cucumber, tomato and aubergine seeds.  As you can see, almost all have germinated & they'll have a better start than last year when they all went in a little late.