FINISHING UP UFOs

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a great start to the work week. The sun has been shining brightly on me the last couple of days.

I spent lots of time in my sewing room over the weekend. I kicked off my weekend by squaring off a few blocks for one section of my Moving Forward quilt project and joining them together …..

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 Once I had joined all those blocks together I was itching to get some more joined together but I was missing one block ….

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This little pear was overlooked. It needed to be fine hand appliquéd to the background. So, I gathered up the supplies I need to do the job. I’m going to open myself to criticism here by telling you that I use very fine 100weight Invisifil thread from Wonderfil to do my fine hand appliqué work. It’s polyester thread and I have been testing it over the last five years and have had nothing but success with it. For a long time, quite often I didn’t want to tell anyone what supplies I used to do what I do for fear that I would attract criticism. However, I am old enough now to stand up and say what I’m doing without fear of repercussions. I was always afraid of the quilting police. I now realise that the quilting police has better things to worry about than the thread I use for appliqué. I’ll go on to say that years ago when I first started doing fine hand appliqué work I only used 100weight silk thread. The choice is yours.

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Here’s a few bits I use while I’m stitching my patches in place …..

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My best advice for good results when stitching my patches in place is make small stitches and because I use very fine thread the stitches just disappear, melt away. You take a small bite from the background fabric and a smallest bite from the patch. I try to match my thread but sometimes a neutral work just as well. As long as you’re enjoying what you do you can’t go wrong. And remember the more you do the better you get.

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Once my little pear was stitched I was able to join all the blocks for the last section of my Moving Forward quilt project. Now I really am moving forward.

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This current project needs some borders now. I have found some lovely bright and busy fabric for the outer border and I will try to hunt out some quiet fabric for the inner border from my stash. I’m really excited about finishing another project that I started during my previous life.

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So, as you can see it’s been a pretty productive weekend for this super happy stitcher. Finishing UFO quilt tops always gives me a sense of accomplishment. I’m looking forward to longarm quilting my latest finishes. Are you working on finishing up UFOs? If so, how’s it coming along? I find it so difficult to go back to something after it’s been sitting around for a while!

So, I guess that’s my report for today. I am happy and feeling fulfilled. Life is a gift and so we have to make the most of each day. I hope you have super cosy evening doing something you truly enjoy doing. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

SUMMER HOURS KICKING IN

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a great Friday. That’s another weekend gone. Did anyone spend anytime in their garden today. Well I did. I spent an hour or so pruning, raking, sweeping and simply wondering why I started the job today!!!!! The hour I spent outside in my front garden was well worth the effort. It already looks better. I have worked out a general plan of action and what I want it to look like when I’m done. It doesn’t cost anything to dream.

What kind of sewing is everyone doing these days? I added the binding to a charity quilt today. I machined the binding onto the front and hand finished it onto the back …..

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And I added a label …..

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The quilt looks great and I’m sure it will some young person the comfort they need at a difficult time.

Last evening, I sat quietly and di the fine hand stitching on my owl. I auditioned some buttons which I want to sew to the centre of his eye …..

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And I hope to find some buttons to add to the lower edge of his body which will represent his feet. Or I might just embroider some talons.

So, most of you will have seen on the news that the UK has a new little prince. Louis Arthur Charles was born on Monday April 23rd at 11:01am. He will be known at His Royal Highness Prince Louis of Cambridge. The new prince is fifth in line to the throne. Very exciting news for this week.

It’s been a brilliant week.  I stepped out for a bit on Wednesday and spent some time with some like-minded ladies. I spent plenty of time in my sewing room creating. And my garden is starting to shape up. Who could ask for anything more.

So, my friends, I guess that’s my report for today. I hope you have a super cosy evening doing something you thoroughly enjoy. Don’t forget that as of next week, I will be starting summer hours by posting three times a week. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x

INTERSTING TIMES AHEAD

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a good productive day. It seems that spring has taken a step backwards here and so it feels a little colder in comparison to the warmish weather we experienced recently.

It’s been an interesting couple of days. Yesterday I went to my monthly volunteer afternoon. The Belles were in good spirits and ready to work. I presented my idea of piecing some quilts using stitch and flip blocks which were donated a while back and the quilt as you go method of joining everything together.

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It seems that everyone was ready for a new challenge. Our main goal is to make quilts for Quilts for Comfort. This group is supposed to be a self-help group whose members learn from anyone willing to share their ideas and skills. One of our lovely ladies announced that she is leaving the group due to family commitments yesterday. I’m sure I speak for all our members in wishing Val and her family well in all their future endeavours.

During our volunteer session yesterday, Ann B. handed me a beautiful quilt top she pieced for QFC. As I did not have any concrete plans for today, I loaded the quilt top into my longarm and quilted it. Here’s a little sneak peek …..

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Once again, I used a quilting design called Rose Garden by Apricot Moon. I really like the design. I used a nice fine mauve colour thread which sits on the white spaces nicely and kind of disappears on the colour fabrics. I will label and bind the quilt being sure to put Anne B’s name on the label as well as mine. I feel that by putting a label on the it quilt gives said quilt a human connection for the recipient.

I worked a little bit on Oliver the Owl today. I prepped all the parts that make him up. Drawing this wee block has given me loads of ideas for new blocks for a future project. It’s amazing where we find inspiration. I also find it very interesting that our style and tastes changes with time. I have a hankering to design something juvenile. I was never into piecing quilts for children but I think I’m going to set off in that direction for my next project. So, watch this space.

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So, the last couple of days have been rather interesting. With every passing day I meet new personalities. I’ve been trying to plan what to do with myself this summer. I have one or two interesting events to attend. And I have lots of work to do in my garden. My garden is not exactly low maintenance, so I plan on doing something about that this year. I’ll start by pruning back my shrubs to see exactly what I’ve got and take it from there.

So, I guess that’s my report for today. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something you thoroughly enjoy doing. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x

A GREAT FINISH

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a great day. Mine was spent mooching around again. I spent quite a lot of time in my sewing room. I should have pushed the vacuum cleaner around the floor or tidied up the garden while the weather was co-operating but I chose to play in my sewing room while my creative juices were flowing.

I joined all the strips of my “A” is for Appliqué/Joanna quilt. And that’s all I was going to do …. Well that just wasn’t enough of a play for me. I sat and pondered what to add as an inner border. I dragged out a little pile of leftover Padstow Range fabric from the collection I purchased all those years ago to make this particular project.

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I decided that I would piece said inner border using leftover scraps of that range. So, I ended up with this once I pieced and joined the inner border to the body of the quilt top …..

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DSCN0242I was going to leave it there for the day but no I went on to add the outer border after I auditioned this fabric which I thought would do the trick …..

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I am really pleased with this quilt top. I plan on finding something interesting for the backing for this quilt top. Finishing this quilt top is bittersweet for me. This project was started in my old life. It’s quite nice to be able to get it finished and put it behind me. I think it shows just how strong I have grown thru the difficult times. I have a few more projects which were started in my old life but now that I have all but finished this one, I know I will go on to finish the other successfully.

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As a treat for finishing my quilt top I flashed up my longarm and did a bit of this …..

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I love this quilting design. It’s called Rose Garden by Apricot Moon. It’s a little bit funky and pretty much looks good on anything.

It’s been a day of discoveries for me. I discovered that once I put my mind to it, I can do pretty much anything even though I think I can’t face it. I also realised that we should always look for the happiness in every day. Today I feel happy. And tomorrow I’m going to search out more things that make me happy.

So, I guess that’s my report for today. I hope you all have super cosy evening doing something that makes you happy. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x

USING HIGH TECH EQUIPMENT

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a great day. I spent my day mooching around doing this and that around the house. Apart from walking my Maisie I didn’t set foot across the threshold. I spent some time in my sewing room looking for things and trying to work out how to move things around to make it more user friendly. I have been blasting my way thru my fabric stash but there still seems to be loads left. I have plenty of ideas on how to put my stash to good use.

I did a wee bit of drawing this weekend. I need one more block for my Moving Forward project. My last 6” square block will be this …..

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Meet Oliver the Owl. I kept this little drawing as simple as I could. You may notice that he has no feet ….. I plan on adding buttons for his feet. I’m hoping to prep this last block tomorrow using this very expensive high tech equipment to make templates …..

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What would we do without cereal box cardboard. It works really well for me. As for high tech equipment ….. I’m quite happy with simple paper and pencil methods, for the moment.

I had a really good weekend. I spent Saturday with a few like-minded ladies. We worked on our current sewing projects, drank coffee and ate goodies. We laughed so hard we cried at times. Laughter is still the best medicine.

O that’s my report for today. I hope to bring you more progress reports this week. We’re soon approaching the end of April. Starting in May and thru the summer I plan to post three times a week. I’m going to take a break from posting and spend some extra time living. I hope to design a new project all the while finishing the two appliqué projects which I am so close to crossing the finishing line with. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something you truly enjoy doing. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x  

BREATHING SPRING AIR

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all enjoyed the last day of the work week. It’s been another glorious day here in my little corner of the northeast of England. The sun has been shining. I’ve listened the bird singing the bees buzzing and Maisie snoring. I did loads of chores and I had a wee session in my sewing room but mostly I took the time to breathe the lovely spring air.

I finally finished all the stitchery work related to my “A” is for Appliqué/Joanna quilt. So, I cleared a small corner of floor in my living room and laid the blocks out …..

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I played with the layout until I was happy with the look and started joining the vertical rows of blocks together. Before I join the three rows together I have one more decision to make. I’m hoping to make my decision by Sunday so that I can finish the joining process. I’m planning to add an inner and outer border to frame it all up. I just need to find the right fabric. There’s no rush, it’s not a race. I’ll take my time finding the finishing fabric. I am amazed at how this quilt has progressed. Tomorrow’s another day.

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I starting prepping a few more hexagon shapes by rotary cutting strips …..

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I will be joining a few other like-minded ladies tomorrow for a sewing session. I plan on working on hexagons as I am sure one or two others will do. We will drink coffee, eat cake, discuss inappropriate stuff and generally enjoy our time away from home. The more I go out and about with other ladies the more I realise that I’m just another normal person.

So, I guess that’s my report for today. I hope you all have a super weekend doing only things you enjoy doing. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x

SEEING RED

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a superb day. It’s been a proper spring day in my little corner of the northeast of England. The temperature levelling off at 20 degrees Celsius!!! I hope it lasts for a few more days.

I kicked off my day in the sewing room. I spent quite a lot of time in there today. I’m pleased to show you the progress I made. First of all, I needed to finish the project I worked on yesterday because it’s a gift for someone and it will be handed over tomorrow. So, the next step was to cut and join the lining …..

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So, I traced the main body of the project onto the lining using a chalk wheel. I don’t use my chalk wheel very often but it comes in very handy when I do use it …..

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I sewed and pressed and cut and scratched my head now and again. And I ended up with this …..

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Obviously, I’m very pleased with the result. So much so that I think I’ll hunt out some of my woolly bits to make one of these bags for myself. Wool is a little bit trickier to work with because it can fray. So, my best tip is to take a 3/8” sew allowance rather than the regular ¼”. The best part of this project is the only thing I had to add is lining which I already had in my stash.

This afternoon I concentrated on my “A” is for Appliqué/Joanna Quilt. I have two more blocks to add stitchery work to but the ten that are ready to go got some extra bits added to them. I cut some 2-1/2” strips of red Bumbleberries by Lewis & Irene and added them to each block in a log cabin fashion. My 12” blocks now measure 16” and will not need sashing. I’m thinking of staggering the blocks once it’s time to join them all together. I’m still gathering embellishments such as button, lace and other funky vintage stuff. Most of the embellishments will be once the quilting is done. So, here’s a few progress photos …..

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This is the last block I added stitchery work to ….

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And this is the next one to get the stitchery treatment. It doesn’t take much stitchery to make a difference.

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So, I’d say that was a pretty good day’s work. I feel so happy about the progress I made today. I’m not sure what made me add the red borders to my blocks today but the bright cheerful red seems to have given me a new lease on life. I love red. My lounge has quite a lot of red in it.

I guess that’s my report for today. Today I have really made life better one quilting stitch at a time. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing you truly enjoy doing. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x

WORKING AT A SLOW AND MEASURED PACE

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a lovely day. It’s Tuesday and life seems to be progressing nicely. I spent a good part of my day in my sewing room. You may remember that I have been striving to finish things that I started a while back. Going back and putting the finishing touches on project is a brilliant way of moving forward. So, as a treat, I dragged out a kit I purchased at one of the many craft shows I attended about four years ago. I’m not a kit girl, I prefer to buy a pattern and then use fabrics of my choice. This project is the exception to that rule.

I started by doing some rotary cutting and a bit of machine sewing before it even occurred to me to take some photos of what I was doing. So, I’ll start with these circles …..

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Making these circles was quite simple. It was just a case of tracing the circle shapes onto fusible web, cutting the shapes out leaving a small margin and ironing the fusible web shapes onto the wrong side of the woolly fabric. Most of you will know how fusible web works. I went on to securing the circles in place on the main body of my project using a nice neat machine blanket stitch.

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This is how I left the project when I shut down for the day. I’m hoping to get it all finished tomorrow. Let’s just hope I don’t forget to take photos along the way.

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I made a little progress last evening with the stitchery work I had in my job queue for the evening. In fact, it’s all I did all evening!

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I’m quite pleased with the result. Isn’t it amazing what a little bit of stitchery work does to a plain block. My stitchery work is by no means perfect but nowadays I no longer look for perfection. Just knowing that I’m Moving Forward is good enough for me.

It’s been a pretty good day in my little world. I played in my sewing room in my slow and measured pace. It was lovely finally making up the kit I purchased years ago. I still have a few more UFOs and long ago decided upon projects which I may or may not finish. My taste in colours and fabrics has changed so much over the last few years and my new designs don’t necessarily suit the fabrics in my stash. I have purchased a couple of books about making scrap quilts which will help me use up my stash. Nothing will go to waste.

So that’s my report for today. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something that brings you joy. After all the dark days we’ve had here in my little corner of the northeast of England, I’m starting to feel cheerier. I’ve worked thru a few issues and life really is getting better one quilting stitch at a time. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x

A DAY OF HOOPING BLOCKS

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a brilliant first day of the week. We are now halfway thru the month of April!!! I can’t figure out where all the months have gone.

I had a lovely weekend; I spent some time with a few like-minded ladies doing appliqué work. Appliqué seems to feature quite a lot in my quiet little life. I also spent some time trying to work out what my last block should be for my Moving Forward quilt project. I have decided on an owl! I will keep it simple as the last block is a wee 6” block.

I didn’t get any sewing done today. As well as doing a bit of living outside the home I had a few chores that needed doing. So, I only got as far as tracing some words on the bottom of this block and sewing some leaders on in order to be able to load it into my quilting hoop …..

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Just in case you can’t see the pencilled in words, it reads Create the life you imagined. I’m not sure if someone is credited with this quote but it’s one I’ve been trying to live by for some time now. For so many years I tried to please everyone and, in my quest, to shut down the idea of doing the right thing for everyone else, I’m creating the life I imagined I would be living at this time in my life. Not everyone can live a fairy tale life, certainly not me. Onward and upward.

It was a lovely weekend in my little corner of the northeast of England. Spending some time with my appliqué friends was great. The more I get out and about and socialise with others, the more I feel normal. The only other sewing related progress I made was to hoop another “A” is for Appliqué/Joanna Quilt block in readiness for a little stitchery work. I’ve worked out how I will join these blocks once they are all ready. I just need to hunt out some fabric to do what I want to do. If only there were more hours in a day, I would be able to get this quilt top pieced and ready for quilting. It’s going to be a nice quilt once it’s finished.

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So, I guess that’s my little report for today. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something you enjoy doing. Until next time, I’ll keep making life better one quilting stitch at a time.

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x