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.

Monday 30 December 2013

December's Birthday Love Stash

The end of the month - and the end of the year has come around remarkably quickly!!
Time to reveal my birthday make of the month (which has been given) and to reveal some of the items that I made for Christmas presents and which have now hopefully all been seen by their recipients!

First though the birthday presents I made for my mother

This little wrist bag was a request and I copied one that she already had.

I thought that she would also like one of these bucket bags so I made one using the same fabric as the wrist bag. The pattern is by Lisa Lam and is in the 'Bag Making Bible'.


Now a few pictures of Christmas presents. First, three pairs of placemats.

And a book cover.

This will be my last post now until we return to France next week.

I would like to wish you all a very Happy, Healthy and Peacefull New Year and look forward to reading all your blogs in 2014.

Lin xx

Tuesday 24 December 2013

The trip so far ...

...has been wet and very windy at times, although we have had some lovely sunshine too.

We arrived in a damp Roscoff where we stayed overnight and spent the next day exploring some of the coast.

We visited one small village where I found this lovely seahorse gazing out to sea.

There was no information about it, no inscription on the base but I was intrigued to see that the yin yang symbol had been carved into the centre of the curved tail on one side.

Further along we found this little chapel nestling behind the sand dunes - again sadly there was no information about it, not even a name and it was shut.

Meanwhile the wind was building up

so that by the time we got on the ferry in the evening it was quite choppy! and the sailing was delayed by a few hours. How ever we still made it on time to Plymouth (evidently the ferry has to go faster when it is rough) and on to the cottage in Taunton which is to be our home for three weeks.

It is tradition that when we visit Philip's daughter in Barnstaple that we spend a day at Lynton and Lynmouth on the north Devon coast.
First we visit Lynton and the excellent craft centre there which is great for individual and unusual last minute presents. After a look around the shops and especially the charity shop which has a large stock of paperbacks we go down to Lynmouth for lunch. The Rising Sun  is to be highly recommended for it's delicious food and warm welcome. If the weather and tide permit then a walk along the beach is next or a wander around the small town. We always visit the studio of Maurice Bishop an old friend of Philip's from school to see what he is painting. At the moment it is very unusual rainbow coloured trees and animals which don't yet feature on his web site.

Lynmouth was devasted by floods in 1952 following heavy rain causing the two rivers which meet there to rise.

As you can see it was not the nicest of days weather wise!

Yesterday England was swept by strong winds and rain and sadly some peoples Christmas has been ruined by floods and storm damage.
We walked into Taunton this morning as we did yesterday and found that the park that we walk through was closed due to flooding.

We found a way around and into the town which was buzzing. The sewing shop I visited had no power but they were soldiering on and I came away with a large bag of supplies to take back to France.

Now to the kitchen to make sausage rolls and mince pies - and a large fish pie to feed hungry visitors this evening. I shall be listening to Carols from Kings later on as I work.

Wishing you all and your families a very happy and peaceful Christmas.


Monday 9 December 2013

A good read

No sewing done this afternoon! After another frosty, sparkly morning it was so warm and sunny outside - 20degrees C on our terrasse that I just had to sit in the sun and enjoy it. Sorry I have not taken any pictures!

 So I finished a very good book. Miss Garnet's Angel by Salley Vickers. It is a lovely story about a lady who retires to Venice and it loosely parallells the story of Tobias and The Angel. I loved this book and would recommend it.

Now I am watching yet another beautiful sunrise form outside my window which means we shall have another frosty morning tomorrow.

Have a good week


Friday 6 December 2013

Clean Studio part two!

It's just that I forgot to show you my postcard wall yesterday when I did the post on my clean workspace. Here it is

it is just behind my desk by my left shoulder. I love my collection of postcards from round the world. The two latest postcards in my collection are not up there yet - they are still taking pride of place on my dresser!

I heard today that the postcard I sent to my lovely friend Judy has arrived safely. Here it is

How I forgot to keep a picture of it I will never know so I am very grateful to Judy for sending me this one.
I loved making this card - some of my dried albizia flowers were bonded to evolon that had been coloured with painted bondaweb and then was covered with a sheer fabric. I then spent a couple of peaceful evenings hand stitching around the flowers with a variegated thread.

Do you love quirky buttons? I do. Why not pop over to Cathy's blog where she is giving away some gorgeous ceramic buttons.


Have a good weekend.


Thursday 5 December 2013

A Clean Studio!

Well actually, studio is pushing it a bit as my workspace is quite compact! Never the less it is not very often that it gets a complete spring clean which is what it had today - well what else do you do on a damp, cold foggy morning when you are feeling pleased with yourself for have completed all your Christmas projects.
So here it is in all it's glory before I get back on track and start making a mess again.

Yes folks - that's it!

work surface

machine thread storage and sketchbooks in progress

computer station, storage drawers and notice board

and just behind the desk are some of my textile/embroidery books, sketch books, magazines and anything that does not currently have a home elsewhere!

Notice the lovely patchwork bag hanging on the door handle made for me by my friend Jennie.
This door leads into the kitchen.

Fortunately the door to the left of my desk leads into the dining room. Good to have a nice large table for working on larger projects and as the room originally was a bedroom it has fitted wardrobes some of which are handy for storing my fabrics, threads etc etc.

As you will have gathered my 'studio' is actually a corridor! But at least it is my space and I love it.

As I have now finished all my Christmas projects I am back to work on the Mystery Quilt although not much I can do until some fabric arrives that I decided I needed to liven up the border.

If you have nothing planned for New Years Day how about making a Mystery Quilt?
 Heather Spence Designs are organising this and funds raised go to Cancer Care. This should be great fun - there is a facebook group so you can keep in touch with the other ladies (and possible gent!) and see how they are getting on. They are a super bunch.

Well that's it for today.

Happy stitching


Monday 2 December 2013

A postcard and a Book Cover

I have been enjoying a bit of simple machine embroidery.

This card for my dear friend Mad started out as a piece of black felt with pieces of sweet wrapper bondawebed to it. They were machined around and then the piece was covered with a sheer fabric and free machined into place. I then went over it with a heat gun so that some of the sheer fabric was melted away. At this point it looked interesting but it needed something else! So I played around with some of  the stitches my machine produces using a different shiny or silky thread each time to produce a rich, glitzy card.

Having enjoyed playing around with my machine I decided to use a similar technique for a book cover.

This time I started with white felt which I coloured with disperse dye. I then added a few strands of sparkly angelina, covered it with a sheer fabric and ironed it in place. Then came the fun, with lots of stitching using different threads and stitches. Finally I stitched a spiral to emphasise the doily print that I had used originally onto the felt.

The felt was then backed with cotton before I made up the book cover adding a marker ribbon at the same time.

This is the back of the book.

Our weather has changed now and we are getting cold, frosty nights with bright, sunny days - lovely. We have been having the most amazing sunsets every evening. Here are a few pictures from a few evenings ago.

Well, I have finally finished all my sewing for Christmas - next on the agenda is a good clean and tidy of my workspace! More on this soon.

Have a good week and thank you for dropping by.