END OF ANOTHER BRILLIANT WEEK

Hello my lovelies. Have you had a good week? Mine has been brilliant. I’ve done a bit of this and that and thoroughly enjoyed every minute.

I ran a few errands this morning and a wee bit of fabric may have found it’s way into my bag …..

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It’s time again to start thinking about making a notebook cover. My current notebook is coming to an end and I’ll be using some of these long quarters to fabricate said notebook cover. I love the cheerful colours and as I use my notebook daily will enjoy using it. I didn’t really need to buy new fabric but I thought as I have been pretty good at using up what I have for a good while, I deserved a little treat. And besides, the new prints might bring me inspiration. I look forward to cutting into these new babies and piecing something gorgeous that I’ll see every single day.

The weather was very co-operative today. I hadn’t planned to spend anytime outside, in fact, I was going to disappear into my sewing room to have a sewing fix. However, because the sun was shining and the wind was virtually non-existent, I decided to step out and start my autumn garden clean-up.

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I clipped and chopped until I filled two reusable garden waste bags. There’s a fifteen-foot Buddleia in one of those bags!!! That’s almost three times my height!!! I worked in the garden space just outside my sewing room. It was getting quite overgrown and scary looking. After an hour of clipping and chopping I managed to clear three-quarters of that area of my garden making it look much tidier. I will dispose off the garden clippings at the tip tomorrow on my way to my sewing session.

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My companion supervisor, kept an eye on me while I quietly worked my way thru what looked triffids. She stood just off to one side trying to take in some of the lovely autumn sunshine.

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Maisie is in pretty good shape for an old lady dog. She’s twelve now and she loves all of life’s comforts. Once we came inside she assumed her position on the end of the sofa and snored for an hour. It’s hard work supervising outdoors.

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I recently finished piecing my latest project and loaded it into my longarm quilting system a couple of days ago. I’m really looking forward to finishing the quilting and binding but in the meantime …..

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My design wall is looking so sad. So, tell me ladies, what are you working on these days? I was thinking perhaps, that while I work out my next design, I should probably use up some of my scraps to make a couple of cosy scrappy quilts that my Sarah and I can use on cold winter evenings while watching TV. I bought a large piece of fleece a few weeks ago, which would be perfect to back a couple of cosy scrappy quilts. In the meantime, I can workout what my next theme is. Writers get writers block well I’ve got quilt designer’s block at the moment. I’m sure the inspiration will come soon enough and my design wall will be covered is loveliness again.

So, I guess that’s my report for today. It’s been a fine week in my little world. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something you truly enjoy doing. We all need to do more of what we love. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x

SLOW MEASURED PACE TODAY

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a super-duper day. It’s been a good productive day in my little world. Somehow, I managed to add the last borders onto my Sweet Dresden Town quilt project. I have been working on and off on this project for some months now. I am so thrilled to see the quilt top finished and loaded into my longarm quilting system. I’m hoping that by this time next week the quilt will be quilted, bound and labelled; ready to unveil to the world. I’m quite pleased with this project. It’s a whimsical view of the neighbourhood I would love to live in. There are a couple of real-life landmarks which can be found in my little corner of the northeast of England.

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I will be adding some simple quilting to this quilt using a very pale green thread and the binding will be a scrappy multi-coloured affair. Instead of introducing new fabric for the border, I plan on using up all the scraps from the patches.

With My Sweet Dresden Town all but finished, I’m already looking for a new project to sink my teeth into. I still have plenty of fabric in my stash that needs using up. I would like my next whimsy to be a combination of simple pieced blocks and simple appliqué blocks. This year has been all about the Dresden Plate, so perhaps I should find another favourite block to work with for my next endeavour. I’ll let you know when I decide on my next theme.

I worked in my sewing room all morning and part of the afternoon on my feet. While working I wore these …..

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I am determined to break these beauties in enough so I can wear them out and about properly. They are more comfortable than when I first purchased them but they’re not like slippers yet.

Today is Wednesday, the hump of the week. Only two more workdays left to this week. I feel like I’ve been very busy lately but somehow, I don’t have much to show for my efforts. I must try harder. I don’t seem to be taking many photos these days. Rather than taking photos I seem to be enjoying life as it comes.

So, I guess that’s my report for today. It’s been a good day here at happy stitching manor. I have enjoyed my quiet time working at my slow and measured pace. And even though I worked quietly and slowly, I still made good progress. Speed isn’t important. I think what’s important is to enjoy every moment of what you’re doing. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something you truly enjoy. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x

PUMPKIN SEASON IS HERE

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’re all having great autumn days. The weather has been typical here in my little corner of the northeast of England. It’s been breezy and wet at times but generally I have been enjoying every minute. The heating has been switched on in the evening just to keep the damp away. I have been lighting scented candles; I really enjoy watching the flickering flame.

I have finally completed the centre blocks and inner border of my Sweet Dresden Town. The different components have been hanging on my design wall for months. In the past few days, I have been admiring it and finally took the decision about whether I need another border. And the decision is that yes it needs another border to frame it up. I know exactly what fabric I want as the last border. And it will be purchased this weekend. The backing fabric has been pressed and joined and the whole lot will be ready for longarm quilting very soon. You may not be able to tell but I’m rather excited about getting this one finished.

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It seems ages since I last worked on my hexagon project. When I sit down in the evening, I knit. I always seem to get a hankering for knitting when autumn arrives. At the moment I’m knitting socks. I’ve lost count of how many pairs I knitted over the last few weeks. I sure am enjoying it but there will come an evening when I want to do a little hand sewing pretty soon. I’ll let you know when that happens.

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I have been keeping quite busy with household chores and making changes to give my home a different feel. It’s a year since I was officially pronounced single by the family court. Making decisions was difficult at times over the last couple of years but I have finally accepted that now I can do as I please when I please in my own home. My top priority was to change the look and feel of my bedroom. This task will be fulfilled this coming week. A few new pieces of furniture will do the trick. And those bits of furniture will be delivered this weekend. I have so been looking forward to this.

Life at happy stitching manor sure has changed over the last few years. Everything is much simpler making mine and my Sarah’s life much easier. There’s rarely any drama. Who knew life could be as good as this???

The leaves are really changing colours now. We’ve had a several blustery days blowing the leaves off the trees and onto the ground. While walking the dog in the morning I have crunched my way thru piles of dried leaves in the park. And the local supermarkets have pumpkins in the produce section. I’m not a pumpkin pie lover but I do like a nicely carved and lit pumpkin.

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I guess that’s my report for today. I have been enjoying life of late. My new life seems to finally be taking shape. I still believe in happy ever afters. In fact, I think I’m finally enjoying my happy ever after. I hope you all have a super cosy weekend doing something you truly love doing. We should all be doing more of what we enjoy. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x

BOOGIE BOARD PRACTICE

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’re all enjoying autumn. It’s very breezy in my little corner of the northeast of England. And not only I it windy but that wind is blowing the leaves off the trees!!!

I’ve been enjoying autumn at my slow and measured pace. I’ve been out and about a little bit and seen the trees are starting to changes colours. Autumn is my favourite time of year. It’s starting to cool off sufficient that I can start wearing my woollies. I’ve pulled a few knitted cardies and sweaters out. And I’ve gone on to knit a few pairs of socks …..

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The socks knitted using Regia wool are children’s sock which I will be donating to Quilt for Comfort. Not only do the volunteers of Quilts for Comfort piece quilts but now they are collecting socks to bring comfort to young people receiving cancer treatment. Apparently, your feet get quite cold when during chemotherapy treatments. The donated sock can be handknit or store bought. And the young people love character socks eg: superhero, princess etc. I’m chose to knit a couple of pairs for now. When I’m out and about in the shops I will be looking out for interesting socks.

Speaking of Quilts for Comfort, I longarm quilted one quilt top last week for the charity …..

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I love a scrappy quilt. While I was stitching I spotted one or two fabrics which I have had in my stash over the years. I love this quilt and it has inspired me to make a couple of scrappy quilts for my Sarah and I to use in the evening while watching TV this winter. I have some lovely spotty fleece to use as a backing which will make the quilts even more cosy. Now I just need to decide how I will piece the quilts and to sort thru my scraps. I’ll need to clean my sewing machine including changing the needle and I’ll be good to go.

You might remember this panel that I pieced a couple of weeks ago just because I needed a sewing fix …..

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Well I finally quilted it this past weekend. I cleaned my sewing machine and changed the needle to a quilting needle and did the deed.

I find that I get a bit rusty in between freemotion quilting sessions. So, I need to practice a bit before actually start quilting the project. Lori Kennedy of the Inbox Jaunt recommended using a Boogie Board to practice. In the past, I used paper and pencil or a White Board and White Board marker but a Boogie Board wastes less paper and ink. I definitely agree with Lori that practicing on paper/Boogie Board/White Board helps you give your brain a preview of what you want to stitch on fabric. The more you practice the better your shapes get.

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I quilted this project using my domestic sewing machine, a Brother Innovis VQ-2. It’s a great machine for freemotion quilting as it has a large sewing bed. Once all the quilting was done I turned the panel into a bag. I’m not sure I need another bag but it was a great to practice my freemotion quilting while getting my much needed sewing fix.

With the arrival of the cooler weather my little furry supervisor needs a little bit of comfort …..

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My Maisie was a little off colour over the weekend. With her advanced age she suffers from Vestibular Disease. She had an episode on Saturday. Now that we know what it is when it happens it’s not so scary. Maisie has recovered and is in fine fettle today.

The last few weeks have been great. I have been living a reasonably good and quiet life. I do my best to stay away from complications. A simple life is a better life. My Sarah and I are looking forward to Christmas. I haven’t started counting down the days yet but I have done a wee bit of Christmas shopping.

So that’s my report for today. I have enjoyed my little bit of recent creativity. I hope to finish off one or two UFOs before Christmas but in the meantime, I’m enjoying little bit of stitching that comes my way. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something you truly enjoy. Until next time,

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 Lucie x

SUMMER RECAP

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a super weekend. It was a lovely quiet weekend in my little corner of the northeast of England.

Well I guess summer is over; the kids will start going back to school tomorrow (in my area) and the weatherman says that meteorological autumn has arrived!!! Autumn is my favourite time of year. We had a super summer …. I’m hoping for a splendid autumn.

So, let’s see. What have I done this summer? Well all in all it was pretty quiet around here. I spent loads of time relaxing and soul searching while designing and sewing all kinds of stuff. I did a bit of freemotion quilting …..

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I worked on UFOs …..

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I attended my Sarah’s graduation ceremony …..

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And I went to The Festival of Quilts …..

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These photos represent just a very small selection of quilts I saw at the show. I couldn’t possibly take photos of everything I saw. These photos were taken using my phone so the quality isn’t great but you will have some of idea of what I saw. I can tell you that there weren’t many hand quilted quilts, the bulk of the quilts were machine quilted. Those that were hand quilted really stood out for me. Here’s a quilt which I recognised as being pieced and quilted by a blogger that I have been following for some time.

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Allison Reid of New Every Morning Patchwork & Quilting. I especially liked the quilting on Allison’s quilt. If I remember correctly Allison took a class to learn how to quilt feathers which she later quilted on her Carrie Nation Variation quilt. So, well done Allison. Your quilt looked splendid hanging in the exhibition.

Another interesting part of the exhibition was Nancy Crow’s Mono-Printing. Her quilts are mono-printed and later freemotion quilted. The mono-printing is more in league with what my Sarah produced in university but I can appreciate the process and would definitely like trying to make a small sample for myself.

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All in all, I have to admit that going to The Festival of Quilts was the highlight of my summer. We travelled some 400 miles to get to the venue and back safely. On the days leading up to the event I was trying to find a good enough excuse to pull out. However, I faced my fears and made the journey. And I’m glad I did it.

It’s already the third day of September!!! As I mentioned above, the kids are returning to school this week. The one thing I miss doing is buying new uniform and school shoes not to mention a new pencil case. My goodness how things have changed.

As I sit here this afternoon remembering what I did this summer, the rain is showering my parched garden. And the people are scurrying past the front of my house trying to get home from work asap before they get really wet. My garden must be sighing at the arrival of a little moisture.

I do have some sewing progress. Don’t get too excited because it’s just a small sewing fix. Earlier in the year I used this tool to make a fireplace hearth runner…..

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Ages ago, I sat quietly at my table drawing a little diagram for which I could use my magic Dresden ruler again …..

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So, I chose a background and five different fabrics …..

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After doing a bit of cutting and sewing, I produced this quilt top …..

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I will be adding some freemotion quilting and turning this quilt top into a bag. I don’t need a bag but it’s my go to whenever I need a sewing fix. I look forward to finishing this project sometime in the near future.

So, I guess that was my summer report. I really enjoyed every single day of this summer. The weather was glorious and I thoroughly enjoyed the peace and quiet. I hope you have a super cosy evening doing something you really love doing. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x

WORKING MY WAY THRU MY STASH

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all been enjoying this summery August day. It feels like the months are escaping me. It’s already mid-August and the kids will be heading back to school in a couple of weeks!!!

I went The Festival of Quilts last week and I seem to be having a hard time getting back into the groove. So, I decided to treat the next couple of weeks as a holiday. Everyone seems to be getting out and about and jetting off to warm faraway places, so I thought I could consider this time between now and the week when the kids head back to school as my holiday time. I’m going to step out to do some sightseeing or at least try to on days when I really feel like bunking off.

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I have a little sewing progress to show you today. You might remember this panel which I freemotion quilted a few weeks back …..

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The plan was to turn the panel into a bag. Well I’ve done it. Here’s some photos of both sides of the finished bag before some simple button embellishments were added ….

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And this shot is with the button embellishment …..

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I’m quite pleased with my effort. I really enjoyed my freemotion quilting session and I really enjoyed turning this panel into a bag. I generally keep my projects simple nowadays. I’ve worked on more complex blocks and large quilts in years gone by, but now I quite like keeping things simple enough that I can visualise the finished project. The best part of this latest finish is that I bought absolutely nothing to bring this bag to completion. It feels good to be working my way thru my stash.

The last time I went shopping for groceries I decided to buy some flowers. My Sarah suggested that sunflowers might make a nice change. So, I aimed for sunflowers. Did you know that the supermarkets sell wonky flowers and fruit and veg????

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I quite like wonky, in fact in many of my own designs I make sure to add a wonky element. After all, nature doesn’t always offer perfection. Flowers, fruit and veg are rarely perfectly symmetrical. Here’s a photo of my sunflowers in a vase. They look beautiful to me. Wonky is beautiful.

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My Maisie dog had surgery recently. Last week it was touch and go whether I would be going to The Festival of Quilts because Maisie’s surgical wound wasn’t healing very well. The vet gave me some magic gel stuff to put on her wound and today all that’s left is a nicely healed scar. Here’s my beautiful Maisie enjoying the sun.

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So that’s my report for today. My Sarah and I will be gathering all the photos we took at The Festival of Quilts and I will be back in a few days with my report our experience of attending the largest quilt show in England. 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

ONLY A FEW DAYS TO GO

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’re all making happy summer memories. I’ve waited a long time to start making new happy memories. And this is the summer I’m going to do it.

My Sarah and I have had simple happy times over the last few weeks. What with Sarah getting really good grades and graduating university and finally attending the graduation ceremony after three years of study. You would think that’s all a proud mother would need. However, we have one more event to attend before the summer is over. In a few days my Sarah and I will be taking a road trip when we attend The Festival of Quilts in Birmingham. Most of you reading will be thinking … what’s the big deal??? Well it’s a while since I did anything that far away from home. The last couple of years I have been on a journey of discovery. Starting all over again at my age can be a long drawn out affair. I’ve done all the basic rebuilding work and now it’s time to start living a little. So why not do something that involves my passion ….. quilt making.

Around Easter, I was invited to attend The Festival of Quilts by the organisers as a blogger. My own personal goal is to have a good look around and tell you the story of my visit to The Festival of Quilts. As a seasoned quilt maker, I know what I will be looking for at this particular show. I have attended this event three times over the last eight years. And every year new stuff is unveiled. This year I will be looking for quilt making related tools, different thread, machine quilting rulers, buttons and perhaps some woolly bits.  As our visit is basically a flying visit I will not be taking any classes.

So, The Festival of Quilts starts on Thursday. Today is Monday. All the prep work has been done. Maisie is booked in for a holiday and I’ve booked us girls a hotel room near to the venue. I’ll fuel up the car put my sunglasses on and we’ll push off early morning for our four-and-a-half-hour journey to Birmingham.

At the moment I’m filled with apprehension. However, I do know that once I have arrived at the venue and have had some refreshments, I’ll be in my element discovering all the new stuff that I haven’t seen yet. And as my Sarah studied textiles she’ll be in her element as well. If I’m honest, I think I’m really looking forward to stepping out and making new happy memories.

I do have a little progress report regarding my “A” is for Appliqué quilt. The photos aren’t great as the light wasn’t very good for photography but you will get the general idea of the quilt and quilting.

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I still need to add a label to this quilt. It’s a bright and cheerful quilt which I think I will hang. It will definitely brighten up any room.

So that’s my report for today. I shall be back next week with my report about our visit to The Festival of Quilts. 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

“A” IS FOR APPLIQUE PROGRESS

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all enjoyed a super first day of August. It’s been lovely in my little world.

I have a little progress report on a long standing UFO. If you’ve been reading me for a long time you may remember a little challenge I started several years ago called “A” is for Appliqué. My version consisted of 12 appliqué blocks which I eventually finished piecing but which were put away until recently when I decided to join all the blocks together. It then sat for a long time before I gathered the courage to longarm quilt it. I changed the name to something shorter along the way to The Joanna Quilt. Here are a few progress photos of what I’ve stitched so far …..

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I decided that this one would be all freemotion quilted using simple designs. It’s a bit funky and I have fallen in love with it because it’s a little bit quirky. It’s cheerful and the different blocks and the quilting draw your eye around the to the next surprise. I am really looking forward to getting the quilting done so I can take it all in in one go. It’s difficult to see the whole quilt when it’s loaded in my longarm. I have one or two other UFO quilt tops that need to be quilted. Perhaps I’ll be able to finish a couple more this summer.

So that’s my report for today. I have really enjoyed working on my “A” is for Appliqué quilt. It’s very satisfying seeing a project thru from start to finish. I hope to post photos of the finished result soon.  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

SHORT SHARP SEWING FIX

Hello my lovelies. I trust that you’ve all had a super-duper weekend. I hope you made the most of the last weekend in July. Can you believe that the month is almost over!!!!!

Last week I started working on a new little project. Every now and again I need a short sharp sewing fix. Short sharp means a small project which can be completed quickly. You might remember me posting this photo last week …..

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Well I have completed this project by adding some of this …..

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Which I added some simple freemotion quilting to …..

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Boy did I ever enjoy quilting this ……

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I set aside that little house panel to add some freemotion quilting to this …..

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Then the magic started. I layered up the two components and added some pockets and then went on to bind the piece …..

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Can you work out what it is yet?

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I plan on flipping it over the arm of my chair and keeping my remote controllers and anything else that I feel the need to keep close to hand while watching TV up in my den.

When I bought these four fat quarters I had absolutely no plan for cutting into them. I don’t buy fabric as often as I used to, so when I do it’s because I really need it to finish something off or I just really like the fabric selection.

It was a quiet weekend in my little world. My Maisie girl dog had dental surgery on Friday and needed to rest from the trauma. Maisie is doing very well all the while healing up nicely. She looked like she’d been thru the wars when I collected her from the vet hospital Friday evening. Maisie is a few teeth lighter and my wallet is much thinner.

So that’s my report for today. I’m pleased with my latest finish. Life really does get better with every stitch I take. 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

STILL MAKING LIFE BETTER

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’re having a really good week. It seems that I’m not the only one who is having a splendid summer. The weather is still glorious here in my little corner of the northeast of England. We’re experiencing record breaking high temperatures here. So, I’m sticking to light chores and staying out of the sun. It’s not so bad riding in the slow lane.

I have been playing in my sewing room lately. I dragged out some autumn colours to make a table runner. This selection of fabrics come from the fabric I uncovered while redecorating my sewing room last year. All free fabric. Now I feel justified in buying a few new fat quarters because I managed to make a project without buying any fabric. In my quest to design and make something in a flash, I kept the whole thing rather simple. Here’s a little look at what I produced …..

 

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I enjoyed the process so much that I’m rejigging it and working on another project. This project is pieced using four new fat quarters and some background fabric which I already had in my stash……

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You’ll have to come back to see what else I add to this and how it will be used.

Last weekend, Saturday into Sunday morning my fridge/freezer decided to pack in. My whole freezer defrosted and I lost quite a lot of food. The fridge/freezer was ten years old so I guess it didn’t owe anybody anything. Needless to say, that I headed out on Sunday morning fridge/freezer shopping. The sales assistant lady was so helpful in trying to find me the best buy for my money by comparing all the different appliances. And in no time a new fridge/freezer was bought and paid for and a delivery date was confirmed. The new appliance arrived on Tuesday afternoon. It purring away as I write this post. For once, there was no drama surrounding a challenge. Perhaps life is easier when you make your own decisions.

So far, it’s been a pretty good summer in my little world. I tend to keep to myself these days. Putting your house and home in order takes time and a lot of effort. I spend plenty of time being creative, dreaming about new projects and recording new ideas. The only problem is that there isn’t enough time and energy to do everything I want to do in a day. As always, my goal is to make life better one quilting stitch at a time. And it’s working rather well for the moment.

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

Let’s all keep on stitching,

Lucie x