NEW PROJECTS THIS AUTUMN

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all been enjoying the autumnal weather we have been experiencing. I am still crunching leaves underfoot in the morning while walking my Maisie. This morning the sun was shining beautifully showing off the naked branches of the trees. Comfort food is the order of the day. I have made one or two pots of soup and serving warm breath with it. It’s the perfect warmer for this time of year. Casseroles and pasta bakes go down really well too. Are you doing any comfort cooking right now?In my last post I ran a giveaway draw for 5 pairs of tickets to the Knitting & Stitching Show being held in Harrogate which is running from November 28 to December 1, 2019 in the Harrogate Convention Centre. The winners are:

Ann Burch – Newcastle Upon Tyne
Heather Smith – Northumberland
Jayne Davey – Lancashire
Bal Bailey – North Yorkshire
Chris O’Rourke – Newcastle Upon Tyne

Congratulations ladies. I would appreciate it if you could all supply me with your home addresses so I can submit them to the organisers who will forward your tickets. For those of you who missed out on entering/winning tickets and would like to attend the show you can book tickets online and by using code ONE19 you will get a discount.
So, let’s move onto sewing progress. Last time I showed you a part constructed Cathedral Window panel. Well I finally finished the panel …..


And appliquéd the panel to the back fabric …..


And layered up the Cathedral Window quilt top ready for a little hand quilting around the borders …..


For those of you who would like to try this traditional technique and think that it’s far too difficult, please do try it. The trick is to take this technique one step at a time and it makes it much easier to digest. Even if you only ever make one panel, do try it. It will use up some of your stash and you might even turn it into a gift for someone. I’m definitely going to gift mine for Christmas.
My UFO inventory is dwindling away. And with that in mind, I decided it was time for me to have a stab at something new and different. I think my new project will be or perhaps is already trending. The project is English Paper Piecing and it’s called Brimfield Awakening. Here’s a look at what I’ve pieced so far …..


The most difficult part of starting any project for me is choosing fabric. I was determined to use what I’ve got in my stash. So, I opened every drawer containing fabric and pondered what would go together. Well the task is so difficult now that my stash is dwindling away to nothing but I did find some very fine, lawn like fabric produced by Lecien that I purchased a few years ago which I was saving for Sunday best. Well baby, Sunday has finally arrived and I have cut into the fine fabrics and they seem to be working quite well for this particular project. For purposes of photography I have laid the blocks out on soft bamboo wadding in the vane of showing the colours of the fabric prints. Once I have pieced a few more blocks I will be able to decided what colour background I will need. Pinterest has a really good selection of photos of Brimfield projects. There’s something quite satisfying about working on English Paper Pieced projects because you know that your project will be accurate and neat. So, for now, I will alternate between my Brimfield project and my current knitting project as my evening armchair work. For today though, my washing machine is whirring away getting my bedding clean and I will step out to rake an enormous pile of leaves into my garden waste bin in readiness to be collected by the council tomorrow. It’s a bright but very cool day so I will no doubt come in from my outdoor adventure in the garden with roses on my cheeks and my glasses fogged up so that I can’t see where I’m going.
I love autumn. I love the crunchy leaves. And I love crisp sunny days in autumn. I love wearing woollies and chunky boots. This is my perfect day.
So that’s my news for today. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something you truly enjoy doing. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching; did you know that one quilting stitch at a time makes life better? Take it from me, it does.

Lucie x

CHARITY QUILT SEASON

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had splendid day. It’s been bright and wonderfully productive day in my little world. I have spent day mooching around doing small jobs around the house. I planted more annual bedding plants, sewed four labels onto quilts and generally just tidied around the sewing room and various other areas of my home.

I longarm quilted a quilt top which I received as a Christmas gift. I have been looking at it for months while my longarm system was not working and longing to get it quilted and ready to use. Well yesterday was THE day. I must tell you that this hexagon quilt top was pieced by my Sarah using hand-picked scraps!!!!! The backing fabric was a bit of a dilemma for me. I wanted something different. Something that would set off the quilt top. While digging around my sewing room a couple of weeks ago I came across the perfect backing fabric. It’s bold and bright and just fits with the bold and bright hexagons. After seeing the finished quilt on my laptop screen, Sarah said “I never imagined you would want such a bright quilt”. Well who wouldn’t to brighten up their life with this magnificent piece of work. So without further delay here is the quilt, you might want to put your sunglasses on before you focus on the following photos …..

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Is it cheerful enough for you? I love it. It’s going to go at the foot of my bed. And I know it’s going to make me smile every time I go into my room. Do you have a quilt that cheers you up??? I can tell you without a word of a lie that this kind of an accent can make your day. So, don’t be afraid to use colour in your projects.

Over the last couple of weeks, I have been longarm quilting charity quilts. I have done three so far and I hope to do a couple more over the next couple of weeks. I must tell you before I write anything else that these quilt tops were not pieced by me. The charity is Quilts for Comfort and we have volunteers who donate finished quilts and we have a few groups who are not capable of quilting the quilt tops they piece. So that’s where I step in, when I can. Some of the quilt tops are a little skimpy, so I look thru my fabric stash and see if I can find something to add borders making a quilt top a more friendly size. And once that’s done, I load it onto my machine and quilt it and then bind and label it ready to hand over to our Quilts for Comfort chairman who stores and delivers a great number of quilts a few times a year to the RVI hospital in Newcastle Upon Tyne. It’s a great cause that makes me feel quite humble. Here are three of the quilts I have done some work on recently.

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So, as you can see, I do keep pretty busy. I have been working on my newest project for which I hope to post some progress next week. The blocks are coming along nicely and I am thoroughly enjoying doing the fine hand appliqué work. It’s a soothing repetitive work that slows the day down after a busy demanding time.

Well, I guess that my report for today. 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

ON THE UP

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’re all enjoying a very happy and healthy first week of February. I am finally back on my feet after a prolonged period of illness. My energy levels are almost back to normal and I’m looking forward to catching up with everything I should have been doing these last five weeks.

We have been experiencing some rather bothersome weather here in my little corner of the northeast of England; not nearly as bad as the weather my North American friends and family have been experiencing mind you. England rarely experiences extreme temperatures and bouts of snow aren’t very common either. So that means that when it does get cold and we do get snow, it’s quite a hardship. I put the hardship down to the fact that there isn’t the snow clearing equipment like North America has.

So, let’s see what’s been going on. Well the answer to that  question is, not a lot. I haven’t done much sewing or knitting. I have concentrated on redecorating my hallway as that’s what I was doing when the virus hit me. There’s still loads to do but we’re getting there slowly but surely. My sewing room still looks like a bomb hit it. Loads of stuff which usually resides in my hallway is now in my sewing room. And until the redecorating job is done there will be very little new sewing done. I felt quite anxious about this recently but have now accepted that once the redecorating is done, it will be beautiful and worth the effort.

Over the last few weeks, I have been dreaming up new projects. I need a wall hanging for my hallway. So, this particular new wall hanging project presents a few new opportunities. It gives me the chance to explore new techniques and it also means I can use some of my scraps as well as my main stash. Here’s a little chicken scratch drawing of what I’m planning on creating some day soon.

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And these are the fabric scraps and threads I have gathered so far.

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This is part of my weird and wonky project phase. It will give me a chance to stand outside that ¼” seam allowance rule box that restricts me. I hope to include machine quilting as well as hand quilting long stitches using embroidery thread. I can use some of the thread I have been collecting for some time but have never made use of. I want to stamp words and embellish to my hearts content. But ….. first, I need to finish one or two chores. In the meantime, I can keep adding to my list of techniques and things I want to include in this newest project. I’m working very hard at not being distracted by something new and shiny. I have in the past jumped from one thing to another meaning that I don’t finish the first thing I started.

A while back, my Sarah asked me what I would like for Christmas. Well at that time I couldn’t think of anything I needed. So, I asked her to make me a 1” sided hexagon quilt using scraps. Well Sarah worked hard for ages gathering scraps from every in the house. And she spent many evenings sewing hexagon together. And this is what we’ve got now …..

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I plan on adding a border using something in my stash. And I plan to piece a backing using up fat quarters from my stash. Eventually, I will give it a simple machine quilting job and we will love for many years to come because these hexagons with stitched together with love and hope for a cosy future.

Today I will end this post with a little preview of what’s to come this spring. I love having flowers in the house. So, last week I treated myself to these beautiful tulips. I love the colour.

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So, I guess that’s my report for today. The last few weeks have been long and quite frustrating but I seem to be on the up again. My creative mojo is slowly returning. And hopefully the winter will be a short one. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something you truly love. Until next time,

Let’s keep on stitching.

Lucie x    

SLOW STITCHING

Hello my lovelies. I’s been a while. I was so busy having a good summer that I haven’t posted a report in a whole week!!! How dare I have a good time. Life is a little more carefree these days. I’ve been enjoying every minute of every day. And sleeping, well I’m sleeping so well nowadays. I wake fresh as a daisy in the morning.

So, I guess you might all be wondering if I’ve been doing any sewing. Well the answer is yes, I certainly have. These lazy summer days lend themselves to slow stitching. Not only have I drawn new blocks but I have been prepping them and securing patches in place by machine at my favourite slow and measured pace. And once I have sewn the patches in place I take the time to have a good look at my work. In the old days I didn’t have time to do anything slowly never mind admire it.

We’ve had loads of sunny days in the past week or so but I wanted to make sure that no matter what I could enjoy my days. So, I stitched this simple sunshine to remind of the good days ahead of me …..

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Here’s a little preview of the block …..

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I can’t show you the whole thing because it’s missing some stitching in one section. I’m really looking forward to finishing this particular project because I want to longarm quilt it to see how it all comes together. However, I still have a long way to go. That’s the only thing about this slow stitching stuff, it takes a while to bring to fruition.

I don’t do any machine sewing in the evening. Evenings are for quiet armchair projects. I’ve always got some English Paper Piecing on the go. My favourite is hexagons of course. I’ve shown you this project before but it has grown since the last I posted about it. This one is an ongoing project for which I have no specific use for. It’s just one of those projects that I’m working on because I can.

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It’s warmish and the pollen count is very high in my little corner of the northeast of England. I’m hiding myself away from the pollen and the UV rays. The kids are still in school here. I think the school year ends in about three weeks. At the moment the parks and shops are pretty quiet but watch this space once the kids break up.

The most wonderful thing that happened to me last week is that my little car went in for it’s annual service and came out with a clean bill of health. Yahoo. I’m looking forward to our next road trip which should be The Festival of Quilts in August. Only a few weeks to go now.

So, I guess that’s my report for today. Life is treating me and my Sarah with kindness at the moment. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something you 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 super duper productive day. It’s been dark and dreary here but I didn’t let that get me down. I drew up a To-Do List yesterday for today. And I just stuck to it until I crossed everything off my list. Phew! I’m glad this day almost over. Now I get to sit down and relax.

I’ll start my report with my POTC progress. I finally stitched the label on …..

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When the label goes on, that’s it the quilt is finished and ready to use. My quilt, My Labour of Love quilt, will go on to serve me for many years. It will be used and loved probably long after I have gone on to another dimension. I’m hoping that once I’m gone my quilt will go to a loving home. Here’s another little peek at the finished result …..

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And here, my lovely assistants, Chris and Morag, holding the quilt up for viewing. Looking at a quilt from a distance gives you the chance to see the all over effect. You can’t see that when you stand only inches away…..

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Last week, I kicked off a new armchair project. I knew I was going to miss working on EPP. So, I decided on what kind of a layout I wanted and started cutting up fabric …..

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And here is a little peek at what it might look like when I start joining all the hexagons together …..

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I’m quite happy with the look of this new armchair project. It’s one that I will work on in the evening while watching TV and if and when I join other like-minded ladies for sewing sessions once or twice a month.

My weekend was a lovely relaxed affair. We enjoyed a little sunshine and some time spent with interesting ladies. I love the social side of getting together with other ladies who indulge in quilt making.

So, I guess that’s my report for today. It feels a wee bit light so hopefully I can bring you some interesting progress later in the week. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something that brings you joy. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching

Lucie x

VISIT TO A BLUSTERY BEACH

Hello my lovelies. I hope you all made it thru Valentine’s Day. My Sarah and I had a great time. There was no pressure. It’s lovely to spend an evening with someone who doesn’t need to be impressed.

It’s been a bit of a busy day in my little world but I don’t seem to have accomplished much of anything. I kicked off the day by collecting my new specs at the optician shop. Then I renewed my house insurance; this is a task I hate doing because I seem to spend ages on the phone. This year I decided to renew online. It took only a few minutes and it was straight forward. I’m good for a whole year now. Yippeee

I went out for lunch with my friend Anne and her husband Malcolm. We went to our local fish and chip place on the beach. The place was packed but the service is excellent and the food is really good. It’s ages since I’ve been to that chippy. After our meal we had a short stroll to look at the sea. The wind was whipping around and blowing the sand all over the beach. I sure wouldn’t like to be in the water today.

It seems that all us quilt makers are of the same mind. We all love stationery. So, Anne gave me this little present which is very welcome indeed …..

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Not only is Anne’s gift pretty, it’s very functional as well. I was scrambling around last night to find a scrap of paper to make of list of blocks I want to draw for my Moving Forward project. So now I’ll put my notebook in my project box and add to my list as I think of new designs to be added. Thank you for the thoughtful gift Anne.

The sun has been out all day and the windy has been blowing like mad. While I was out walking Maisie this morning, I was wondering if spring would ever get here. I must admit that I’m fed up of being cold. The days are definitely getting longer but it still feels like winter. OK that’s my rant for today.

Between ranting and collecting specs and renewing insurance I also did a little hexagon prep work. You might remember that I cut strips yesterday. Well today I traced the hexagon shape onto the strips ….

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Stuck a pin in the doubled up folded strip in each shape traced to keep all four layers in place while I cut …..

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I use good Fiskars scissors to cut thru all those layers …..

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In no time flat I cut these three piles of hexagons …..

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We all have our own method of cutting hexagons but this works really well for me. I never cut all the hexagon shapes in one go. That’s probably because I’m never sure how big I will make the project. And it also gives me chance to add different colours and prints.

It’s been a pretty good day in my little world. I enjoyed socialising. And I’m pleased to be able to tick one or two things from my To-Do List. So, I guess that’s my report for today. I hope you all have a super duper cosy evening doing something that brings you joy. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching

Lucie x

VALENTINE’S REPORT

Hello my lovelies. Happy Valentine’s Day to all. I changed to meaning of Valentine’s Day many years ago. For many, Valentine’s Day doesn’t include the celebration of romantic love. So, I decided to make it about family love. Nowadays I prefer to spend time with my most favourite people. Today, I’m spending time with my Sarah. We’re going to share a simple meal and just catch up on what’s going on in each other’s lives.

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Sarah and I are collaborating on a project which I will tell you more about in the next couple of weeks. It’s quite exciting for mother and daughter to do something creative together. Considering the age gap and difference in tastes … I look forward to seeing what we end up with.

It’s been a dark dreary day in my little world. While Sarah worked on her final major project for uni I stepped out to run some errands. We now have enough food to last us until early next week. When all the groceries were unpacked and put away, I disappeared into my sewing room trying to figure out what to do ….. A few days ago, I decided that I definitely needed another English Paper Piecing project on the go. So, I pressed this selection of fabric and cut it into strips …..

 

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These fabrics will be transformed into something that looks similar this …..

Hexagon Project

I have loads of paper pieces to work with …..

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These hexagon shapes measure ¾” on the flat side …..

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I quite like the diamond shape hexagon layout for which I do not know the name. Is there a name for this layout??? If anyone knows the name of this layout please do let me know.

Isn’t it amazing how many household items are heart shaped or have hearts printed on them. I gathered this little lot in less than three minutes. …..

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I quite like hearts. I designed a whimsy appliqué quilt that has hearts in every single block a couple of years ago. I suppose that’s a testament to how much I like hearts …..

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So, that’s my heart filled report for today. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something that makes your heart sing. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie

MORE QUILT MAKING PROGRESS

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a great day. I spent a bit of time in my sewing room searching for stuff and tidying. I really must find a good way of storing fabric so that I see what I’ve got!!!

As well as doing a few household chores, I started hand finishing the binding on my Patchwork of the Crosses quilt. It’s the perfect time of year for binding quilts. It’s brrrrr cold and so when the quilt is all spread out in your lap while you sew, it’s also keeping you cosy warm. I use my favourite clips to hold the binding down …..

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And in this case spend hours hand sewing the binding to the back of the quilt …..

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Here’s a little peek at the quilting design I used. This one is called Zephyr by Hermione Agee of Lorien Quilting …..

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I love the big teal polka dots on the fresh green background. I’m really pleased with the over all result of this quilt. My next step will be to make a label. I’ll post more photos when it’s finished.

It’s been a lovely quiet day working at my slow and measured pace. Sometimes it’s good to be in the slow lane. It gives you the opportunity to have a good look around.

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

Let’s all keep on stitching

Lucie x

SUNNY PROGRESS TO START THE WEEK

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a fab day. We’ve had nothing but sunshine all day long. The temperatures are still rather cold but the sun was very pleasant indeed.

On Sunday I decided to have a little sewing fix. I miss sitting at my machine creating something. So, I racked my brain trying to think of a little project I could start and finish pretty much in one day. As Valentine’s Day is on Wednesday I decided to go for a heart themed project. This is what I produced …..

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I used the foundation paper piecing technique using this design …..

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And I went on the layer my wee quilt top and added some quilting. I think my little quilt will be used as a mug rug. The next step is to hand finish the binding onto the back of the quilt. It was fun to disappear into my sewing room and do something creative.

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On Sunday I noticed that my design wall was looking a little bare!!!

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So, I prepped another block for my Moving Forward quilt …..

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And displayed some of the blocks I have finished piecing for my Moving Forward quilt project to cheer the place up a but …..

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Looking at the colours and prints on my design wall, I notice that my tastes and the way I design things has changed quite a lot in the last couple of years. I’m not afraid to put loads of colours and patterns together anymore. Eventually when this project is finished, I’m hoping it will be nice and interesting.

I treated myself to a book last week. I don’t buy many books nowadays. This book has been on my wish list for quite some time. It’s Free-Motion Machine Quilting 1-2-3 by Lori Kennedy of The Inbox Jaunt. I have been following Lori’s blog for quite some time and I want to be like her when I grow up. Lori does such nice Freemotion quilting. If you haven’t seen her work do pop into her blog and have a look. The book is packed full of good info and step by step freemotion quilting designs.

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Now the moment I’ve been waiting for. Here’s a little sneak peek at my Patchwork of the Crosses in the process of being quilted. I thought long and hard about how to quilt it. In the end I decided on an all over quilting design.

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It’s been a great day at happy stitcher manor. The sun has been following me all around the house all day. I had the best time ever longarm quilting my quilt today. I baked my favourite oatmeal muffins and cooked some chicken in the slow cooker. I have such a great sense of accomplishment today. And it’s only Monday. Hopefully the rest of my week will be as productive as today. I’ll show you more of my quilt once it’s bound and labelled.

Well I guess that’s my report for today. I’m looking forward to having a great creative week. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something that gives you a sense of accomplishment. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching

Lucie x

TGIASF

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all had a fabulous day. If you’re wondering about the title of this post …. Thank God it’s a sunny Friday.

It’s finally the last day of the working week. I’m always glad when Friday comes around. I enjoy the weekend because everyone is a little more relaxed.  I’m looking forward to tomorrow because I’m going to be spending most of the day with like-minded ladies sewing. There’s nothing more fun than spending time with other ladies who enjoy quilt making and who have been thru a similar life. We’ve all got kids that have grown and are about to fly the nest or who have already flown the nest. We all learn from each other how to approach the next steps in life.

I’m not sure if it’s the sunshine that’s making me feel really good today or perhaps it’s the fact that I finally finished sewing the border on my Patchwork of the Crosses quilt top this morning. I’m definitely doing a happy dance. I don’t think anyone has the right to be as happy as I feel at the moment!!!!! After finishing what seemed like the mammoth task of hand appliqueing the hexagons onto the border, I went on to loading it into my longarm quilting system. I have no excuse for not quilting it next week …..

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Now some of you might be wondering why the border took so long to finish. Well it’s because I wanted to keep the shape of the hexagons and squares on the edge of the quilt centre. I could have trimmed a straight edge but I think the shaped edge makes it more interesting.

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I purchased my backing fabric before Christmas in hope that I might finish it over Christmas but that didn’t happen. It’s a Moda wide back designs by Basic Grey and the collection is Grunge Hit’s the Spot. It’s a beautiful fresh colour. I can’t wait to see it finished and on my bed.

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I spent some time doing chores in between everything else. The washing machine was whirring away while I was vacuuming the downstairs. And I layered up a lasagne for our evening meal. Umm umm, lasagne, garlic bread and Caesar salad. Yes sir, life is good. And I even got to do some more quilt making related stuff by prepping another block …..

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I’m really getting back into my Moving Forward project. I’ll be transferring the leftover fabric from my POTC box to my Moving Forward box. Waste not and all that.

Well I guess that’s my report for today. I’m looking forward to a great creative weekend. I hope you all have a super cosy time doing all your favourite things over the weekend. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching

Lucie x