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Tuesday, 23 December 2014

vintage quilt

          I dropped into a little antique/vintage shop yesterday and saw this beautiful quilt hanging on a screen. The price was right so I bought it. The stitching is so small and neat that it looks like its matchined pieced and quilted  but on taking a closer look I can see that it is all done by hand, the only machine stitching is joining the strips of diamonds. It is beautifully made and mostly in very good condition, the grey patterned diamonds next to the pink are worn and could do with replacing. I'm guessing this fabric was thinner than the rest and has therefore worn.

I have washed and dried it and now it looks brighter and fresher, I will take it over to our cottage, I need to get hold of a quilt ladder to hng it on alongside some of the older quilts that I've made.

I'm delighted with my find!



Sunday, 21 December 2014

I have been so neglectful of my blog in recent months, I can't use a busy life as an excuse because I know you all have busy lives but still seem able to keep up!

I've been considering my Etsy shop and what to do with it. I have enjoyed making baby and children's clothes to sell but I just don't seem to have the inclination to work on promoting it. 

Last week our church put on a Christmas Market to raise funds for the missionaries that we support, I decided to take along my Etsy products and my husband took lots of the pots he has made together with his potters wheel for people to have a go at throwing a pot. This was a huge success and especially the men and children enjoyed taking a turn. 

The market was great fun, lots of very talented people had stalls selling homemade soaps, candles, cakes, preserves, fudge and cookies to name just some of the produce that was for sale.

I sold quite a few of my items and I'm thinking of just winding down my shop and maybe concentrating on quilts and blankets. With a new grandchild on the way I have plenty of reason to make baby clothes. 

I've loved making blankets from the attic24 blog, I'm making cot size blankets at the moment, finished the cottage ripple blanket and am now using the rest of the yarn to make the cosy blanket



On Friday we went into visit our son in London, he asked if I would like some pieces of Irish linen he had used on a photo shoot and no longer needed, of course my answer was "Yes" and we swung by his studio to pick them up, this pile doesn't look that big but each piece of fabric measures from 4 to 8 metres long so plenty to keep me busy :) I am thinking that I will make some plain quilts, using the same colour linen top and back with wadding in between and then hand quilting through the layers with embroidery silks. 

I have washed all the pieces and although none shrunk, the darker colours did bleed so I couldn't mix colours in a quilt. I'm pretty excited about getting started with these beautiful colours.


Below is a Christmas photo of some of our grandchildren, they dressed up to go to see Elf 
at the theatre. Gilby isn't really into dressing up and usually will only wear a cowboy hat! I guess his Mummy and sisters managed to persuade him on this occasion :)

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Liberty Quilt

Back in 2012 I wrote this post
Well two years later I have finally finished my Liberty quilt. I will add, I haven't been making it all that time, I collected fabric and began making it earlier this year :)

I had also been given some pre cut squares, in two different sizes, so I joined those squares then made triangles and rectangles, backing the quilt with a sheet that my mother bought for my bed when I was 16 (obviously good quality to last all these years!) I hand quilted around each square, triangle etc and  then made bias binding from Liberty fabric, using one of those little gadgets which I had never used before but worked pretty well. All in all I am very happy with the outcome, I do love Liberty. 

We have just spent a few days over at our cottage in Wales and I took the quilt over to put on our bed there.
The weather was pretty chilly, the cottage is in Mid Wales and we are told that is the coldest area in Wales but with the heating on and the wood burner going we were pretty snug. 

And as you can see Molly enjoyed the quilt too






Saturday, 22 November 2014

Cottage Ripple Blanket

  I have spent the last two weeks suffering firstly from a sore throat and then this week with a horrible cold. It's been a few years since I've had a cold and so it's hit me hard. I think spending years teaching Early Years helped me build up immunity to these sort of bugs and then when I stopped  I have caught them. 

Anyway, although I have managed to keep up some of my church work I have also spent most afternoons on the sofa and skipped any evening meetings. But I still find it hard to just sit and do nothing so as I was looking through blogs that I follow I caught up with Lucy's blog Attic24. If you haven't seen this blog you really must go and visit it

Lucy makes the most amazing crochet blankets and posts tutorials too. I decided that I would make one of her blankets and followed her link to to look for the yarn that she uses. The link didn't just take me to the site it took me to the packs of yarn that they sell for Lucy's blankets! So easy with all the colours there in a pretty draw string bag and when the pack arrived it also included a copy of the pattern! 

So I have spent the past few afternoons working on my Cottage Ripple blanket. Instead of making a full size blanket I am going to make two cot blankets using this pattern and  also one of Lucy's other patterns that she shares on her blog


This is how the pack arrived, all the yarn  required together with the pattern in a draw string bag

I've put the yarn into a round basket so I can find which colour I need at a glance

I've taken this phot from Lucy's blog to show how she keeps her colours labeled, such a clever idea as the paper bands usually tear after a few uses. So I am copying this idea, I will use two colours per peg when I buy my next pack of yarn for another blanket using different colour.

The pattern is nice and simple to pick up so after reading it a few times I had the hang of it. I hope you are all having a lovely weekend :)

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

party time!

Last week was hectic, we had planned to go to Devon on the Thursday for the twins birthday party as we do every year. Then two weeks before, my husbands step father passed away. He had been poorly for years but always picked up again. But since my mother in law passed away three years ago he had gone down hill. 

The funeral was planned for last Thursday so we travelled to Devon a couple of days before, the funeral was to be in Cornwall. 

This gave us extra time with with our family and opportunity to help with party prep and doing more with the grandchildren while mummy baked and made party decorations and crafts for the children to do at the party.

Our daughter does a great job for their parties and so the girls are really getting into the ideas too, they had chosen a Hawaiiian themed party and Maggie designed the cake....dolphins jumping out of water with a sun set :) Primrose wanted a hoola hooping competition....they are both very good at this and certainly don't inherit the skill from their grandma! 

I made the girls a waistcoat and tea bag hat each. They had mentioned they could always do with more pencil cases so I made those too together with one for Gilby ..don't think I will be making those again! My daughter had asked if I would make a baby gift for some friends, so I made these little boots and hat, already for Christmas.

Trips to the SW of England always include a visit to the coast and also Dartmoor, all favourites from when we lived down there. Molly's first visit to the beach was fun, although she wasn't so sure about the water

The Hawaiian theme was a great idea, there was a blowup palm tree, a wonky rainbow painted by grandma, fans as take home gifts together with craft activities to make their own lei to wear and a piece of card board, air dry clay and sea shells for each guest to make their own Hawaiian Island to take home too. I made the sponge cake and cup cakes and took them down for my daughter to decorate. ( she wouldn't let me loose on the cake decorating!!)

Top left are the fondant decorated cup cakes, the children enjoyed pineapple slushies from their own carved out pineapples, bottom left is my great niece and then the beautiful sun set over Dartmoor as we were leaving to drive home. I am so thankful that we are able to make this annual trip down for their birthday parties and can't believe this week they turn seven!

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Celebrations in London

It's been a few months since we have taken a trip into London to meet up with our boys and daughter in law. Yesterday was our DIL's graduation although she finished her nursing degree back in February and has been working since then. 

So we went in yesterday to meet up with them after the ceremony and go for lunch together. 
Our eldest son was busy in the afternoon so we met him in the morning, he took us to The Barbican area. The Barbican is Europes largest multi-arts and conference venue and the whole area is built using amazingly iconic architectural design. Our son knows all the good exhibitions to visit and took us into the one showing in the centre which is 'ContructingWorlds: Photography and Architecture in the Modern Age. We loved this, there were great photographers featured including Bernice Abbot who's photos of 1930's USA were amazing. (Shame I wasn't allowed to photograph her photos) 

The top three photos are of The Barbican




Ben and I
Alice and Dominic

Alice and her lovely parents

We not only celebrated Alice's graduation but also their forthcoming baby :)

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Addition to the family

It's been a while since I last posted on here, I just haven't found the time. No I'm not having a baby :):):)
But our youngest son and his wife are! 

We are so excited about this news, this will be their first baby and is due at the beginning of May. This sweet couple live in London and so are much closer geographically than any of our other grandchildren. Our oldest son also lives in London so nice and close to him too. 

I have just begun knitting a little jacket in lovely recycled sage coloured cotton yarn. I do love making baby clothes and can't wait to get started on the quilt :)

Just off now to catch up on all your lovely blogs!



Monday, 22 September 2014

My lovely friend turns 50 today so I made her this crochet scarf. The little wooden hoop and peg holds the ends together well. I will definitely  buy some to keep for when I make another scarf. She is a special friend and I hope she enjoys wearing this snuggly scarf 

For those of you who pray, I would like to ask you to pray for my daughter and her family who are missionaries. As I posted back in the summer, they are caring for a baby who's mother didn't want him, they already have two boys they adopted as babies and this mother wanted them to adopt the baby too but this hasn't been easy to sort out as she disappears for weeks on end or when she is around she is in no state to discuss the matter with. Now it seems she wants the baby back, it has been said that there is a gang who buys and sells babies and this may be the reason. Of course this is devastating for our daughter and her family who are trying hard to get some legal case together so that they can adopt the baby.

Please pray for God to intervene in this situation and also for the babies birth mother to know and experience Gods love for her. Thank you


Friday, 19 September 2014


Our twin granddaughters have their 7th birthday coming up in November, each year I am busy knitting or sewing right up to the last minute so this year I thought I would be prepared. 

I bought a lovely Sirdar knitting pattern book called Squiggly Knits using Squiggle super chunky yarn which is half acrylic, half wool and beautifully soft.

I began the first waistcoat last Friday and today I have completed the two tea bag hats! 

So I needn't have rushed to get started but am grateful I have completed the task before we have even entered October. The patterns for the waistcoats and hats were so quick to knit up they were a pleasure to make. (I hope they like them)






Tuesday, 9 September 2014

summers end

So the Summer is drawing to a close, even though the sun is still shining here in the UK, the holidays are over and the children have returned to school. Spring and Summer are my favourite times of the year and so I am always a little sad when Autumn arrives but we have had a great summer and last week we went across to our cottage in Wales for a few days, we managed to fit in a few small jobs but as our daughter, son in law and their children we staying in a fancy campsite over on the coast we drove across one day to visit them. 

They have stayed on the Fforest sites a few times, each visit they have hired a different type of accomodation, in the past they have used the domes, the barn, the cabins but this time they hired a camping shack. We were very impressed with the set up, they have a wooden shack built on a deck with a bell tent each end opening into the shack. There is no running water but their shack did have electricity nd they have a stove for cooking which is fuelled with logs. They have camp beds in the tents, bean bags to sit on with animal skins on the floor and beautiful Welsh blankets on the beds. The shacks house the kitchen and a lovely oak table with chairs and a church pew for seating. The kitchen is equipped with lovely enamel ware for cooking, eating and drinking. 

The views from their pitch was amazing and the children have lots of freedom


Top left is my husband and son in law having a chat, the camping shack and the bottom two pictures are of communal parts of the site where guests can gather for breakfast, camp fires etc

Their camping shack

Molly is always a huge hit with he children, they love her and she loves them, she comes home exhausted :)

The pull along trolleys are provided for the guests to bring luggage up from their cars...they are also pretty handy for transporting little people too! Gilby was keen to show Grandpa the candles he had bought and a water fight soon got underway

I've taken the next two photos from my daughter IG account...

Apparently one of the highlights for Primrose was that she bought a mermaids take from a car boot sale... I can imagine that would have been a tough one to walk past :)


We came off our route on our drive back to the cottage and the sat nav took us on an amazing drive.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Family visit

I've just returned from eight nights in Devon with my daughter and grandchildren. My son in law was moving his work premises over that period so I went down to help her out while he was working late and then to go camping with her and the children over the bank holiday weekend.
We had pretty good weather until the last two days so we managed to pack in lots to do!

Gilby enjoying hot chocolate and marshmallows after a particularly chilly out door swim

We went to the beach twice


Gilby drew the whole family flying in his paper 'plane

They have a bell tent so I needed to have a scheduled meeting with my son in law before the camping trip to be told how to pitch it :)

It took me less than 30 mins start to finish with just a little help putting the centre pole in place. These tents are great!

We chose the site because it has a heated outdoor pool but we managed to pitch near the corn fields and away from the busy part. The children are great campers, staying up late each night to toast marshmallows on the camp fire and sleeping in late the following mornings. My brother, sister in law and some of their family joined us the second day and it was great to be together which doesn't happen often enough.

Polzeath Beach is on the north coast of Cornwall and where lots of surfing takes place.


The children were happy to get back to see how Snoopy had fared without them....not sure how Snoopy felt about their return ;)

Both our daughters celebrated their wedding anniversaries last week, I was able to baby sit for hose in Devon while they went out for dinner together, my daughter in SA and her husband took their boys out for dinner with them :)

Jesse looking very smart for his meal out

Joe showing me something but I'm not sure what :)

I'm not back home, it's always good to get back and we have lots on but I do miss my lovely family and am happy we had such a great time.