THE ROWS ARE GROWING

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’re all having an enjoyable day. Times are different around here in my little corner of the northeast of England. There’s more traffic going past my house these days. We have a bit more freedom all the while staying alert. I’m still not going very far or very often. I feel quite safe at home at the moment. Like everyone else, I’ll probably soon be venturing out a little further from home while respecting social distancing.

Along with a few household chores and safely welcoming a chartered surveyor into my home, I have made more progress on my row quilt. All the blocks have been prepped ready for fine hand appliqué stitching. Here’s what I’ve got so far …..

Row Quilt Progress

And here’s the stack of blocks that will become the last row which doesn’t fit on the display board along with the other five rows …..

Heart Blocks

Today is not the ideal day for taking photos indoors or out. This afternoon it’s overcast but not raining yet. So, you’ll have to excuse the poor quality of the photos. I have enjoyed prepping these blocks. And now I’ve got a nice quiet job to work on while watching mindless TV in the evening. No doubt there will be endless hot drinks consumed while I work on this little lot. I love a bit of Freezer Paper appliqué work me.

Life is much more relaxed now. The fear of the invisible enemy is dissipating slowly. Each day is more interesting than the last. Progress is being made, just a little every single day. We have to be brave and strong and keep moving forward.

Well, my lovely friends, I guess that’s my news for today. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something that makes you ever so happy. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching.

Lucie x

WEEKEND NEWS

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’re all well and enjoying life to the fullest. I’m still quietly stay home and social distancing in order to stay well and healthy. The sun is shining brightly as I compose today’s post. I might even step out into the garden to do a little tidying up while the going is good. Who knows what next week will bring?

It’s day 60 of my self-imposed and slightly extended challenge. I haven’t posted for a few days because I had a family health crisis to get my head around. And although I did not post I still worked on some simple art journal pages. Here are Day 58, 59 and 60 …..

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When I was working on day 60, I was so determined to make something different when I realised that if I wanted to do something similar to a previous journal page it didn’t matter. In fact, as it’s my art journal, I can replicate the same page everyday if I want. The whole point of doing this art journaling is to keep my mind occupied while times are strange. I can’t ever remember stranger times in all of my sixty years on earth.

Now that I have reached 60 art journal pages, I will switch to another art journal book. The next book is a little larger giving me more scope. I will most likely repeat my favourite designs over again while combining them differently. And I will most likely get a great sense of fun and accomplishment when I can stand back and look at what I have created. I am still planning on translating some of my designs into patchwork blocks and quilts. I’m still doing the fine hand appliqué from the first art journal pages I chose to turn into a quilt top. It’s just circles but it looks pretty good.

I mentioned the other day that there was a family health crisis. Well I can now tell you that my beloved 82-year-old mum fell and broke her hip on Tuesday morning. She was in agony. Well she has now had surgery to put the broken hip right. And apparently the surgery went well. I haven’t spoken to her myself but she is keeping in contact with my brother. My family are in Canada so it makes this quite difficult to get my head around. As things stand at the moment I cannot fly to Montreal and even if I could I would have to quarantine myself  for 14 days and I wouldn’t even be allowed to visit her in hospital. I’m not moaning; I’m just trying to make sense of it all. I’m doing my best to keep a positive head on. I will be very glad when I can speak to her myself. My mother is the bravest person I know. She faces everything head on. I have no doubt that she will work hard in order to get home as soon as she can. Home is where the heart is. And my mother too!

So, it’s been an interesting week to say the least. I look forward to seeing what will develop next week. Life is just getting better every single day.

Well, my lovely friends, I guess that my news for today. I shall be back on Monday or Tuesday hopefully with some positive stuff to tell you and some interesting progress on my projects. I hope you all have a super cosy weekend doing lovely summery stuff. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching, one quilting stitch at a time does it.

Lucie x

SUNDAY CRACK

Hello my lovelies. I hope all is well for you and your families. Every day is an adventure nowadays. We find solutions and adapt to the daily challenges.

It’s Sunday. Hooray! Tomorrow is the start of another week. I plan on trying different things this week. In fact, I have already tried something quite different yesterday but I’ll tell you about that after I have revealed my day 33 messing around with art supplies effort …..

Heart map

My out dated map is coming in handy as you can see. Once again pen dots and doodles, stencilling and shading with water colour pencils. What you may not spot right off …. is that this page spread is upside down!!! I got so excited about working on this one that it’s upside down!!! Silly me. Oooops. I don’t care it was fun to work on and who cares if I have to turn the art journal upside to read the text. The upsideness gives it character.

As well as my upside-down page spread, I worked on a mixed media fabric project. Paint on fabric is something that I don’t have a great deal of experience with. I had a go several years ago but didn’t pursue it.

I started by spreading some paint around on a piece of calico backed with iron-on interfacing for stability.

Mixed Media Fabric 1

And then I added some stencilling …..

Mixed Media Fabric 2

And more stencilling and stamping …..

Mixed Media 3

I plan on layering some fabric in the form of a wonky house, perhaps some fabric trim and buttons for embellishing. And then I’m going to add some quilting, either by hand or machine. This piece, once finished, and if it’s good enough will be framed and hung on the wall. It will remind me of the lockdown days and just how we can find solutions and adapt to many different situations.

With it being Sunday, I will be doing some household chores in readiness for the week ahead. The washing machine will be whirring away washing bedding and I will most likely do a bit of cooking. And if I can find something worthy of binge watching on TV, I will do that while working on hexagons. At the moment it looks like it’s going to be a reasonably nice day. Other than go to and from the waste bin I shall not be wandering around the neighbourhood searching for people to socialise with. Stay home and be well is the order of the day for this household.

Well, my lovely friends, that seems to be my report for today. I hope you all have a super cosy day doing things you enjoy doing. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching and messing around with art supplies. Most importantly stay home and save a life.

Lucie x

DAY 26 MESSING AROUND CHALLENGE

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’re all having an enjoyable weekend. I also hope that you’ve all settled into the new normal. Sarah and I are staying home in order to be well. I understand that it’s not easy for any of us. Our freedom to roam has been taken away from us for a very good reason. That invisible enemy is a killer.

Apart from household, not many though, I have been doing a little hexie work (I will post progress soon) but mostly I have been working on my art journal. That includes searching the internet for new ideas and techniques that I can use to change it up a wee bit. I seem to keep going back to the same thing over and over again. So, here’s my effort for yesterday …..

Bluebird

I made a list of ideas I wanted to include, one of which was bunting and a bird. I have since added several other things to my list which will take me into next month. So, I may be forced to carry on with this challenge until my art journal pages run out. And now for today’s effort …..

Bright circles

This one was really fun to work on. I used a funky bag which I cut into strips and used in the background. The flower petals were made by using some of the Brusho pieces I created at the beginning of the challenge. And of course, I used my trusted water colour pencils to add shading and detail. I would say that I have used my water colour pencils in every single journal page I have produced. Along with my water colour pencils my other favourite tools are my few stencils. If I were to invest a little money into new tools, it would be purchasing a couple of new stencils. Perhaps once the shops open again, I will consider it.

My washing machine is whirring away and the scones I baked a little while ago are cooling on the racking. Sarah and I will have a little tea party in a while. We may even sit outside to party! The weather has been favourable for quite a few days. I can’t remember the last time we had rain. I wonder what kind of weather May will bring? there’s only a few days left in April !!!

So, my lovely friends, I guess that’s my report for this weekend. I hope you have a super cosy day doing something you truly enjoy doing. Be strong, stay home and be well. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching and messing around with art supplies.

Lucie x

MESSING AROUND CHALLENGE DAY 13

Hello my lovelies. It’s another bank holiday here in England. I hope you’re all having a super fine day. It’s overcast and pretty cold here in my little corner of the northeast of England today.

I seem to be sticking to my Messing Around Challenge. It’s now day 13. Here’s how I played with my art journal today …..

Day 13 Journal Page

The blue splodges are actually foil from my Easter eggs!!! And here’s the page I started prepping for tomorrow’s effort …..

Day 13 Prepped Page

I try to do a little prepping everyday because things take a while to dry to my liking. With layering up papers, adding paint etc the pages don’t sit flat anymore. It bothered me at first but now I realise that it’s a sign of the effort I put into something that’s so far out of my comfort zone …..

Art Journal

Over the last 13 days I have worked at my dining table. Well I’m thinking about setting up a little station somewhere in the house. It would mean that I can leave my art supplies at my workstation instead of having to put everything away after each session.

To me the rainbow the is a sign of hope. Of late, the rainbow has become a sign for the #NHS. Windows everywhere are plastered with rainbows drawn by children and adults alike. Soooo, my Sarah gathered up some of her yarn stash and crocheted these …..

Rainbows

And the crocheted rainbows are now hanging in our front window as a sign of hope and solidarity. After all we’re all in this together.

I discovered something this afternoon while I was outside taking photos of my art journal. My first peony bloom has made an appearance. It seems to me that it’s a bit early for peonies to bloom but I’m glad it did. The peony is my favourite flower. I have a total of four different peony shrubs which also include a tree. I hope my peonies bloom for a good long season this year.

Peony

So, today is the last day of a long holiday weekend. Tomorrow we go back to the new normal of staying home, protecting the NHS and staying safe. For all those who are staying home, I think you’re all heroes helping to slow down the pandemic.

Well, I guess that’s my report 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 and messing around with art supplies.

Lucie x

MESSING AROUND CHALLENGE

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’re all have a very happy chocolate bunny infused Sunday. Sarah and I have both had a little chocolate today. It was delish.

So far, the bank holiday weekend has been pretty good. I did a few household chores as well as embellishing a couple of art journal pages yesterday and today. It’s funny that I seem to have grown a little more enthusiastic with every art journal page I work on.

Day 12 Tag

Day 11 Bunny

Sarah has very kindly fished out all kinds of supplies she thinks I might be able to use. For example, gelli plate. I’m not sure how exactly I will use it yet but I have had a good little look online to see how others have played with it.

Gelli Plate

Now most of you already know that my preferred medium is fabric. I design and make quilts. I quilt said quilts either by machine and by hand. Now that I have been playing with all things paper crafty, I think I would like to use similar techniques with fabric. I have dabbled with fabric crafty art in the past but not for a long time. Some of the art journal pages I have produced could possibly be reproduced in fabric. With the current lockdown, I might just have enough time and enthusiasm left to dig out some calico and have a go. Most of what I produced in paper form is simple layering up. Surely, I can do the same in fabric form. Watch this space my friends. I think the time has come to teach an old dog a few new tricks. Google, YouTube and Pinterest are probably a great resource for what I’m thinking of attempting.

It’s been a good weekend so far. One more day left before things go back to regular lockdown. It seems like everyday is the same not matter what day it is these days. Does anyone else feel like this???

Well, I guess that my report for today. I hope you all have a super cosy evening doing something you truly love doing. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching and messing around with art supplies.

Lucie x

MESSING AROUND DAY 9

Hello my lovelies. I hope you all in good spirits and keeping safe. As I sit here composing this little blog post, I can see that the sun is finally coming out. It was dreary all morning and now it’s early afternoon and the sun has decided to grace us with her presence. And welcome she is too!!!

I mentioned yesterday that the new normal is starting to feel normal. Everyday of lockdown is getting easier. It’s definitely is in times like these that you learn to appreciate what’s important. Staying connected is top of the list for sure.

This is day 8 of my Messing Around with art supplies challenge. Everyday I have spent a few minutes making a mess and I am actually enjoying doing something different. Most of you will know that my fabric medium is fabric and everything comes with it. However, doing something different can supply you with varied inspiration. So much of what I’ve been messing around with can probably be translated into fabric crafts. So, now with no further ado here’s what I have been doing today …..

Messing around day 8a

Messing around day 8b

You may recognise these pages as the ones that I prepped yesterday. A little bit of dry brush stencilling, cutting up magazine papers and sticking it down to form a picture seems to have made these pages look a bit better. Now, trust me when I say all of this is simple to do. I will never be creating masterpieces but as long as I’m having fun it doesn’t matter. I hoping to fill my little art journal with techniques that are pleasing to my eye. I think the best part is that I have only used what I have at home. I didn’t spend one copper penny on this messing around business. If I can do it, so can you. Anyone brave enough to join me???

The new normal includes quite a lot of the way life used to be. The old stuff can be quite reassuring. For instance, I just saw the grass cutting machines fly past the door. The grass cutting machine drivers are on a mission to get through the list of public spaces to they need to tidy up before knock off time. The postman still walks past my door 6 days a week, he/she doesn’t have much post for us these days but it is reassuring to see them out and about daily.

It’s been a good day in my little world. I blended some new normal and some old normal tasks and life just seems to be whizzing by now.

Well, I guess that’s 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 and messing around with art supplies.

Lucie x

MESSING AROUND DAY 8

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’ve all been enjoying Wednesday hump day. We’re halfway through the work week now. And we’ve made it through the first week in April!!!

Nowadays, one day is much like the next. However, looking out the window at the glorious sunshine, I realise how grateful I am to be in reasonable health at the moment. I appreciate that while we’re in lockdown mode, I have company. My Sarah does her own thing during the day, and we catch up in the evening. It seems we’re settling into our new normal, finally. Our creative juices are flowing again and we’re both experimenting with supplies we never tried before.

So, I’m now on Day 8 of my Messing Around Challenge. For today’s challenge, I played with one of the Brusho pieces I produced yesterday. Both pieces I produced dried overnight. I sat and studied the two pieces and decided to start with the greenish one. I ended up cutting the piece into smaller bits. So, in the end I prepped a few pages ready for gussying up over the next few days. I have no set plan of action for embellishing just yet. I’m hoping something comes to mind. This is what I have set up so far ……

Prepped Art Journal Page 1

Prepped Art Journal Page 2

And this is what the page looked like before I cut it up this afternoon …..

Day 7 Sprinkle Spritzed

Doesn’t it look different. Yesterday it looked like a splodged mess. Now that I have cut it up and stuck it down it looks totally different. I am quite pleased with the result so far. I hope to embellish it so that the pages look even better. Watch this space.

So, all in all it’s been a pretty good day at happy stitching manor. The days seem to be speeding up now. The new normal is more normal now.

Well, I guess that’s 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 and messing around with art supplies.

Lucie x

MESSING AROUND DAY 6

Hello my lovelies. I hope you’re all well and in reasonable spirits. I’m discovering the best way to get thru this lockdown is keeping busy. So, this morning I did some of my charity work. It made me feel better and now I’m going to try to add tasks to my To-Do List everyday for the next. We’re told that the best thing to do is stick to some kind of realistic routine. So, let’s aim for that shall we. I wanted to go thru cupboards and get rid of whatever is surplus to requirement however, the tips are closed. So, there’s no use sifting thru stuff to decide whether we need it or not because we can’t get rid of it. That’s a job for another time, I guess.

After spending some time in my sewing room doing volunteer charity work, I went on to do a little messing around with some art supplies. Today’s effort is another little piece using cut up Mollie Makes magazine pages, water colour pencils and a little fine liner for a wee bit simple doodling. It was fun. My little house might even translate nicely into a fabric project. So, watch for that sometime soon.

Messing Around Day 6

Tomorrow’s project might include a Brusho. I’m not sure how my journal book will take it so I think I’ll try it out on a piece of water colour paper and then sew it into my art journal using my sewing machine and some interesting thread perhaps. I may be getting a little too brave venturing into sewing coloured water colour paper into my journal but who knows, I may get a really good result. Anything it worth a try.

So, my friends, that’s my report for today. All is well in the sunshine at happy stitching manor. You can feel the warmth in the sun now. It’s very welcome indeed. So, whatever you may be doing, I hope you have a super cosy evening doing it. Until next time,

Let’s all keep on stitching and messing around with art supplies.

Lucie x

MESSING AROUND DAY 5

Hello my lovelies. For the benefit of those who have no idea what day this is and what they should be doing today; it’s Sunday April 5, 2020. It’s also Palm Sunday.

Life is so different these days. I can remember my name, which is a very good thing but I can’t work out what day it is most of the time. It doesn’t matter what I should be doing because nothing is on a time schedule currently.

I have made no sewing progress worth showing you. However, I am managing to keep up with my Messing Around Art Challenge. I didn’t post yesterday but here is my little bit of Messing Around for Day 4 ….

Messing Around Day 4

As you can see, I went back to Day 3’s effort and added some Lucie flowers and turned it into a two-page spread. I also prepped a couple more pages for today and tomorrow’s Messing Around art.

For today and tomorrow the art is produced by cutting up little bits of Mollie Makes magazine pages and making a simple picture. There’s also little doodling. You’ll notice I keep it quite naïve. Have a little peep at my sailboat …..

Messing Around Day 5

Once again, I can go back in and add something I might decide needs to be added to these pages. You know, for all its simplicity, I am enjoying my little bit of cutting out and pasting, my little bit of shading with water colour pencils and naïve doodling. My simple art journal pages, when I look back on them, will remind of how I felt during this hopefully once in a lifetime lockdown. With all that’s going on all around us, I’m beginning to realise that expressing ourselves in whatever manner we choose is important during this crisis. As I post photos of my simple artwork, I feel like I’m telling you all my secrets. All the things I don’t want to share. However, I am hoping that this may inspire you to express yourself in whatever way you can during this difficult period. So, have a go. Give yourself permission to play at doing something you’ve never done before. You know all those supplies that you bought thinking you’d try out a new hobby? Well it’s time to pull those supplies out and use them. Remember that your first attempts may not be perfect but the more you do the better it gets. This is the perfect time to learn something new.

It’s been a quiet weekend. Sarah and I have been citizens by staying home away from any place where people might congregate. It’s ok for now but I do know one thing ….. once this crisis is over, I will never take a handshake, a hug or friendly human contact for granted ever.

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

Let’s all keep on stitching and messing around with art supplies.

Lucie x