Welcome to my blog. I hope you enjoy reading about my adventures - in stitch and otherwise! And I hope that you will leave a comment so that I know you have visited.

jeudi 12 juillet 2018

FNWF's - a very late July report!

Late afternoon last Wednesday (4th) a terrific storm came up our valley bringing with it very strong winds, hail plus some much needed rain. Here it is coming towards us.

The storm passed, we had a few blips of the power but for no length of time and when we went to bed later that night all was well. However, next morning, no internet and we have been without it until today (Thursday12th). First of all we were told it would be back the same day, then it would be back by 6pm Monday and then that it would be back by 6pm Friday. So at least it is a day earlier than the last prediction. You can imagine how many messages and blog posts are queued up waiting to be read!

Anyway, back to Friday. Before the internet went down I had watched a DMTV video entitled 'Stencilled Iris' which involved stencilling onto fabric with Markal (Shiva) paintsticks through freezer paper. It looked like a great technique so I decided that would be my project for the afternoon. I have a print block of an Imperial Pink flower that I made some years ago and knew that would make a perfect stencil. So I traced the design onto freezer paper and cut it out carefully so that I had both the negative and positive images intact. I used a small square of fabric to trial my design with the flower shape and ironed on the freezer paper shape.

I then used a gold paintstick on the freezer paper

and pulled the colour with my finger onto the fabric

The freezer paper lifts off easily to leave the negative of the flower shape

Magic! I love it. You can reuse the freezer paper shape as many times as you like until it runs out of stick (protect your iron with some non stick parchment!) I added an Antique White flower to my gold one.

I remembered that I had used the print block of this flower in my hand made sketchbook so decided to add a stencil to the book using a turquoise paintstick. I have also glued the used stencil onto another page in the book and they are both now waiting to be worked into.

On a larger piece of fabric I tried out my other freezer paper shape, again using gold.
And then that was it for my afternoon. Since then I decided that the larger piece of fabric would be enough to make a book wrap for my handmade sketchbook and so I continued stencilling onto it. It is now layered up and ready to embellish with stitch.
I have worked one each of the stencils into my current journal and played around with a gold pen.
I was able to find my original sketchbook pages which included photographs of the pinks which was very useful.
I must get some more seeds for these and grow them next year as they were such lively flowers - I nicknamed them 'dancing pinks' at the time.
I am off to catch up on some more emails and blog posts - more news from here over the weekend I hope.

vendredi 29 juin 2018

Applique and some new cushion covers

The patchwork ladies met this week - sadly I completely forgot to take photographs of all their lovely work, especially as we were joined by our UK resident member who was visiting for a few days. The new technique for their sampler quilt is applique and this is the block that I have given them to work on.
I really enjoyed working on this block and hope that they do too. I found the design on the internet and have adapted it to my needs - sadly I can not find now where I got it from so apologies to it's designer as I am unable to credit you!
The cushion on my favourite garden chair was looking distinctly grubby at the beginning of the season and as it is not washable the next best thing was to cover it with some fresh, clean fabric. I remembered some ticking samples that I have been hoarding knowing that 'one day they will come in handy'! So out they came and I used the largest pieces to cover my cushion.
This was a quick and simple project so I was enthused to use some of the remaining fabric to cover a couple of our other garden cushions. Five cushions later and I was very happy with my work and the bright new look my garden chairs were getting.
 At this point I was left with one un-covered cushion and a pile of ticking offcuts. Well I like a challenge and so I was determined to get that other cushion covered to match. First of all I cut as many 5" squares as I could from my offcuts then I started piecing together the oddments and cutting more 5" squares. I must say that the last four squares were a pretty close thing but all I had to add to make the cover complete was this narrow strip of thick cotton shirting.
Voila! - lots of nice new cushions. Perfect for sitting and enjoying our current hot weather. Well, actually, it's too hot to sit outside most of the time!
So perfect weather for sewing indoors! Have a great weekend.

vendredi 22 juin 2018

Comment notification on Blogger

There is a solution! Read Shez's blog post here for how to do it.

Chateau de Hautefort

Earlier this week we enjoyed a visit to Hautefort with our guests - it's about one and a half hours east of us.

The Chateau was built on a plateau in the 17th century on the site of a medieval fortress and is surrounded by formal boxwood gardens. The chateau fell into disuse but was completely restored in the 20th century by the Baron Henry de Bastard and his wife Simone.
This green pergola is 70 meters long providing a shady cool tunnel in warm weather.

The boxwood hedges and topiary are trimmed twice a year entirely by hand and all the cuttings are recycled as mulch.

To the front of the chateau the beds contain flowers but to the side they contain fruit and vegetables including a wide variety of tomatoes.

The rooms inside the chateau are simply furnished and have beautiful highly polished floors!

We climbed the stairs to the top of one of the towers where the woodwork of the dome can be seen.

I loved wandering round the gardens especially as it was a cooler day and we could enjoy them comfortably. A really beautiful place to visit.

samedi 16 juin 2018

Friday Night Sew In

It was great to join in with everyone for our FNSI for June. Thank you very much Wendy for hosting us - you can see everyone's work for the evening here

My first task was to quilt this Gardeners Journal panel. It was all machined together and the binding handstitched down so it was just the simple! task of choosing a thread and then quilting round.

I am pleased with the effect of the variegated perle thread that I chose and the panel was soon finished.
I have had a small square of hand dyed slubby silk on my desk for a while waiting to be embroidered for another tissue case. I decided to try out one of the designs in this pack of transfers that I was recently gifted - thank you Sue.
The pattern transferred really well. There is a fine, pencil like line which is easily hidden by the stitching so there is no need to wash it out.

By the end of the evening stitching was well underway.

I am keeping the stitching fairly traditional - just the centres to fill in now.

Hope you are having a good weekend - we are off to the airport later today to collect family who are here for a week. Not sure what they will make of the weather - it's a coolish 19 here today but promises to hit 30 by Wednesday! C'est la vie!

Have a great week

mardi 12 juin 2018

It's EPP Tuesday

I am linking up again with Anthea at Hibiscus Stitches - a linky for all things English Paper Pieced. Do go and see what other people have been working on and link up yourself if you have some EPP to share.

I finished sewing down my tumbling blocks to their background and have now quilted and bagged the piece ready to turn into a book wrap.

I wanted to try out some King Tut quilting thread that I bought with my Hexathon quilt in mind - don't get excited, no chance of that happening for a while - and used it with some loopy wavy line quilting on the book flaps. I am pleased with it - the colours are nice and vibrant, although not so easy to see in my picture!

So now I just need to sew down the flaps and it will be all ready for use.

Here are my swap hexies for the month.

So on the EPP front that is it for me.

This Friday is FNSI, the link is here if you fancy joining in for a nice stitchy evening.

Thank you to everyone who left a comment on my last post - I tried to reply to most of the comments but some may have escaped me! Will Blogger ever sort this problem out or is this our blogging life of the future?
Hope you are having a good week

samedi 9 juin 2018

Friday Night with Friends

The beginning of another month - well we are a fair way through it already! - and so it's time to get together with friends for our virtual sew-in. Many thanks to Cheryll for hosting us again - you can see what everyone was working on here

Sadly no pretty pics from me as I was working on secret stitching!

However, I did find time to try out my new light pad and traced out this Gardeners Journal block.

Oh wow, bliss! No more sellotaping designs to the window to trace them out. Really pleased with my purchase and wish I had bought one before. It is so slim and light and tucks neatly under my desk. Perfect.

Hope everyone enjoyed their Friday stitching and that you have a great weekend.