Saturday, August 2, 2014

Sweet web projects I found...

Before I begin the actual blog post I want to say something from my heart - thank you...
You give me such wonderful feedback on my blog posts, designs, tutorials and ideas - and you know, it's that encouragement which daily inspires me. When you leave a comment to a blog post you validate my desire to create beautiful things, and though I try to respond to every comment (via email) it's those who are 'no reply blogger' who miss out on my gratitude, so if you're one of those lovely ladies who leave comments here but don't want to disclose your email address let me say to you today, "thank you, you've blessed me".


About once a month I take a couple of hours on a Friday or Saturday night and do a bit of blog hopping. It's not as often as I'd like, but when these opportunities occur my personal level of awe and inspiration goes nuts. There is seriously so much talent out there in Craft-dom, and today I thought I'd share a few blogs, tools and projects that caught my eye last night...

Rose at Threadbare is sharing a gorgeous mini quilt pattern and her choice of fabrics made me swoon!
She has named it the Star Cluster and by visiting her blog here you can download her free pattern...



Sweet and generous Cori Blunt is spending a year with her readers teaching them to do the most exquisite needleturn applique with a series of free patterns to make a kitchen themed quilt! Her "Become a Stitching Queen in 2014" will have you polishing up old applique skills and learning new ones. Her tutorials are very detailed, and  she makes it look so darn easy. You'll have to scroll through her posts here (not many, so you'll find them quickly) to gather the blocks shared so far. I love these jam jars...



Have you been bitten by the 'hexie' bug that I'm seeing all across Blogworld?
Take a look at this needlebook made by Natalie from Sewing Room Secrets. She shows how to put the outer cover together but not the inside, however, it's fairly easy to work out the rest yourself. Take a look over here - I think I see a triple row of hexies in your future...



Lisa and Sarah over at Spoonful of Sugar shared a tutorial to make a pretty crochet-edged hand towel, and it's suddenly jumped to the top of my to-make list for August. Maybe it's the Tilda fabric trim? Maybe it's the crochet? Maybe it's Tilda and crochet side by side! And then there's those sweet little red spots...anyhow, I fell in love.
You can make your own by following this tutorial...



Do you ever wonder how much binding you'll need to finish your quilt? I came across this site recently and it's so simple to work out because you just type in the size of your quilt, the width of your binding and the width of your fabric, and voila - you have the magic number!
Visit Quilters Paradise here and take advantage of their free electronic Binding Calculator...


Mr E and I are looking at increasing the amount of Paleo recipes in our menu at the moment, especially after a recent relapse into gluten foods and the ensuing weight gain, bloating, and tummy upsets. We were not well.
For a treat this weekend I'm going to make Cassy's paleo Blueberry Scones - they look delicious and the 'flour' is really just cashews. Her recipe and tutorial are here...


 I think that's enough to keep us all busy for a little while, don't you?



WINNER!

Congratulations to Linda from Jusmom1 who won my little birdie door hanger...


It will be winging it's way across the ocean to the USA next week.
Thank you to everyone who entered.


Before I go, let me show you the beautiful earrings Mr E gave me last night. We were wandering through the night markets down on the Strand and all the stall holders were about to pack up for the evening, but then we lingered to browse over my favourite silver jewellery stand on the way out; the one I usually swoon over and walk past empty handed, but this time it was different...


...surprised, blessed, loved.
hugs



Friday, August 1, 2014

The 12 week Shabby Roses Churn Dash invitation!


Late in 2012 I designed and stitched an embroidered version of my very first quilt design...


It was large, 10" x 15", and so pretty in the softest pastels...




 But you know, nearly two years have passed since then and my style and colours have changed a bit. I'm a little brighter and happier with fabric choices these days...

 
So you know what I've done?
I've given those twelve small designs that were inside the larger Shabby Roses Stitchery a new lease on life; a fresh Moment to Shine!


Over 12 Fridays I am going to be embroidering and piecing my little stitcheries into the centres of bright and cheery 7" Churn Dash blocks!

Would you like to join in? 
The finished blocks will be sashed and made up into a 27" x 35" quilt. 
The fabrics I've chosen are...


Each Friday for twelve weeks I will put one new stitchery in my shop as a $2 purchase so you can stitch right along with me and make all twelve, or you can pick and choose just a few.  It's up to you. :-)

OR you can purchase the original full stitchery pattern (top of this post) which already has the twelve small blocks we'll be using along the way!
Both are HERE in my shop today as instant pdf downloads.

TUTORIAL:

As this is the first Friday I'll take you through the process of framing Block 1, "Peace", inside a 7" churn dash. This block tutorial will be the base for all 12 blocks so you can run ahead if you have the larger pattern, or wander along with me over 12 weeks if you want to take your time and gather the individual designs one by one.  
In fact, I might veer off and make some different blocks (with tutorials) but for now the plan is to use all Churn Dash.
On October 17th I'll share the assembly instructions for the whole quilt. 

Note: The small weekly individual patterns have a list of threads used and all the fabric requirements inside.

So enough of my chit chat, let's make the block!

You will need...



Trim the Peace block to 3 1/2 inches square.

Draw a diagonal line behind the two floral 2 7/8 inch squares;  lay them face down on the coral squares of the same size; sew a 1/4 inch seam down both sides of the line; cut along the line; open out the sections and press your four half-square triangle blocks open...


Sew a 1 3/4 inch strip of the floral fabric to a 1 1/4 inch strip of the coral fabric.
Make three more of these.
Press the seams open...


Sew two of these pieces down the sides of the Peace block, the coral edge next to the stitchery...


Assemble the remaining six pieces into two rows of three, one above and one below the stitchery section.
Sew them together...


Final step - sew the three rows together!


So what do you think? Will you join in?
Leave a comment if you are because it's so nice to stitch in a group of friends, and if you have a blog we can all come visit you!


I'm drawing THIS giveaway later today and will announce the winner tomorrow.
 Hurry over and enter while you still have time...you might win!

Hugs


Thursday, July 31, 2014

TUTORIAL: an iPhone cosy...and tea!

The other day I shared photos of a sweet set I made over the weekend, and part of that trio was an iPhone sleeve and a lined zippered pouch. I promised to share tutorials for making the pouch and phone sleeve and today we'll begin with how to...

(I got the original idea from Squidoo and have changed a few things to suit my own requirements)

Firstly, let me assure you that you can use this tutorial to make a cosy for any mobile phone, you just need to adjust the width of my measurements to suit.

You will need your mobile phone, a piece of fabric you love (mine is Japanese linen), and a piece of felt in a colour that blends with your fabric...


 I have an iPhone 4 and it measures 2.25 inches wide (6cm) so I cut my felt and fabric 4" x 12" each...


 Lay the fabric face down on the felt...


Pin both narrow ends together...


 Sew along the ends with a 1/4" seam...


Turn the fabrics right side out and press flat...


Fold in half across the middle, fabric side facing each other...


Sew down both raw edged sides with a 1/4" seam...

 
Place your phone inside to check how snug it sits.
My cosy was too loose around my phone so I needed to have more taken out of the sides. I stitched two more side seams, 1/4" in from the first seams...



I trimmed the seams back to a scant eighth of an inch, turned the cosy right side out and it fit my phone perfectly.

But I couldn't stop there!

 
 It's the little extras that take simple projects up a notch, don't you think?
By simply threading some red beads with both red and beige Perle #12 threads and tying off the ends with a cute birdcage charm my new little iPhone cosy is ready for use!


These would make excellent gifts, and it only took me 15 minutes from start to finish.


Yesterday Heather, Barb and I met up at Absolute Tea for a morning of sweet and savoury nibbles, and non-stop chatter.
I take much better photos with my camera than my phone so I only have two pics from my phone to show you, but you can see we had delicious fun.
Heather (below) and I had the sweet taster platters which held a macaron, scone, cupcake and chocolate, all of which married perfectly with our delicious Vanilla Chai Lattes...


Barb enjoyed a pot of elegant tea with the savoury taster platter of ribbon sandwiches, quiche, fritatta and herbed sour cream...
 

I've stolen this photo collage from Heather. She was wise and brought a real camera!
I love the photo she took of Barb and I...

A wonderful morning with special friends.
These days are what memories are made of...

hugs

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Planning Day and then a treat!

It's early Wednesday morning, really early.
Today I have a special place to go, with special people who make me laugh and feel good about life in the midst of it's ebb and flow.

But first, planning...


...and some preparation for new things to embroider when I come home.


Seriously cannot wait to start stitching with these colours...


They will become a 12-step remake of an older design of mine. Laid out so pretty, filled  with vibrancy and words of life...


The floral is from Sandy Gervais "Chance of Flowers", and I'm not sure about the green tonal as I purchased it as a single fat quarter and there's no selvedge markings to identify it's source...but they make a sweet marriage.

I'm stitching on cream hanky linen,
with Anchor threads.
and from my heart.

First, though, I have a morning appointment with Heather and Barb...


I hope your own day is filled with friends and pretty things too,
hugs,