QAYG

Well I have finally started to put my Splendid Sampler quilt together. I’ve been prevaricating a bit, partially because I’ve not done it before and having spent the last twelve months making the blocks, I don’t want to ruin it at the last stage.If I’m honest I’m also feeling a bit snowed under with our house decorating schedule, trying to organise workmen, together with trying to keep up with challenges I wanted to keep up with, like the monthly stitch challenge.

I’ve decided to forget about the challenges until after the decorating, concentrate on finishing my Splendid Sampler quilt, I’ve then promised my daughter Helen an elephant quilt…and I’ve a charity quilt to make for the end of May…then I’m going to catch up with lots of dressmaking!

I decided fairly early on in the Splendid Sampler journey to try quilt-as-you-go or QAYG as it’s known. I knew I wanted to quilt each block individually, according to the design, rather than doing an all over design like I’ve done before. There is no way I could do that on my domestic sewing machine, with a 75″ quilt I think I would struggle to quilt it anyway. With QAYG each block is sandwiched and quilted separately, then the blocks are joined together. There are a couple of ways to join them, but I decided to follow the tutorial on Tall Tales from Chiconia Kate’s instructions are excellent.

The Splendid Sampler

Once I had quilted my blocks I trimmed them all to 7.5″, my original plan was for 8″ blocks but as Kate stressed how important it was for all the blocks to be exactly the same size I decided to trim them a bit more.

I chose a soft teal colour for my sashing, I cut 1″ strips and with quarter inch seams either side, the blocks lay perfectly together.I used my walking foot and double-checked my quarter inch seam before hand. The underneath sashing is made with 1.5″ strips folded in half, I machine stitched one side at the same time as stitching the front strip on, and then hand-stitched the back down. If you’re confused, check out Kate Chiconia’s tutorial, she makes it very simple!

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This is my progress so far, I’ve a couple of pairs and one set of four. I’m really pleased so far. I’ve decided not to stress over my sashing squares not meeting up squarely, if they do, great, if not, I’m chilled! I also think it will be easier to lay them out on the table in 16’s, decide on the arrangement before sewing them together and then moving on to the next sixteen, I can’t cope with trying to arrange 100 blocks at once!

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One factor that has made arranging them a bit more tricky is my decision at the beginning to use a variety of floral cottons to back. A decision I’m still hot and cold on, but once I’d started I had to continue! In the end I’ve done half patterned and half plainish with the idea of chequer-boarding them. I never thought it would be so confusing trying to get the patterned and plain in the right place!! I got myself in a right muddle last night. It didn’t help that I hadn’t sussed out that as long as the design wasn’t directional, I could just turn the blocks the other way up!! Once I thought I’d stitched them the wrong way round, but actually they just needed turning!  I had a bit of a brainwave today during my lunchbreak at work, I’m going to put a pin on all the patterned ones at the front, so I don’t need to keep turning them over!

I think now I’ve started it and got a bit of a system going, it shouldn’t take me too long, just 96 blocks to go…

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Stitch-a-long 7; Flower Lattice

It’s three weeks since I last posted my progress on my Flower Lattice. It’s a design by Di van Niekirk which uses ribbon embroidery and stumpwork. I’ve done a little ribbon embroidery before, but I’ve never tried stumpwork, so I’m learning lots to say the least!

This was my progress three weeks ago, I had just finished my second diamond;

Flower Lattice

I’ve not managed much this time, but I have stitched a bit. We’ve just started major decorations and work on our house, so in the last couple of weeks I’ve painted one room (ceiling and woodwork today!) stripped wallpaper off another two rooms, prepped another… hopefully by the beginning of summer I will have redecorated eight rooms, have new doors and floors and be all sorted, back to normal…the chaos when you start decorating is just not conducive to sitting peacefully embroidering!

Panel three is ‘a lily, narcissus & a ladybird’. I’m trying to be strict with myself and stitch them in the order of the book, so I don’t start with all my favourite ones and leave the tricky looking ones to the end!

The lily is meant to be stitched with silk organza ribbon, I’ve only got the normal silk ribbon, so I used that instead. My silk ribbon was quilt a bright orange, rather than the rich copper shown in the book. I decided to try overdying it with my silk paints, I added some deep pink to a drop of water in a plastic cup and dunked my ribbon in it, gave it a swish and then ironed it dry to set it. I’m pleased with the result, it’s just softened the orange. It’s not quite as bright as it looks in the photo, but it’s probably more tiger-lily than copper coloured!

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The buds were stitched first, followed by the main flower and then the leaves. The centre of the flower is filled with french knots and pistil stitches. The long stamen is a cake decorating one. The book showed one big one which was stuck in with a dab of glue, I didn’t fancy that method. I used a smaller one, dipped it in very dark brown silk paint and allowed it to dry thoroughly before I folded it in half, made a hole in the fabric with the biggest chenille needle I could find before threading the stamens through the hole. I just secured them with a few stitches at the back.

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At the moment it’s not my favorite flower, but hopefully the daffodils and the ladybird will tone it down a bit! Maybe the cute little ladybird will take centre stage!

The next step is to embroider the basket which the plant sits in, it has like a woven effect using whipped spider web stitches…so that’s another one to learn!

Tomorrow it’s my Embroiderers Guild meeting so I’m planning to take it with me to stitch on in the morning, so hopefully next month you’ll see more progress.

There’s quite a few of us taking part in the stitch-a-long now, all around the world. It’s organised by Avis, so if you fancy joining in just drop her a line. Everyone will hopefully be posting today so why not have a look what everyone else is creating at the moment.

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Down the Rabbit Hole

Down the Rabbit Hole BOMThis year I’m just starting one Block of the Month, it’s by Sarah Fielke and it’s called Down the Rabbit Hole. It’s a mixture of piecing and applique, so hopefully by the end I will have mastered needleturn applique.

The design is gorgeous, the first block was released on 31st January and it’s taken til now to pluck up the courage to start! Once I started I realised I shouldn’t have worried as Sarah is a brilliant tutor. The pattern is released on line, the instructions are easy to follow but there is also a video tutorial, where she talks us through the whole process, demonstrating each bit, it’s great! The facebook page helps us all to keep motivated by sharing our blocks, seeing different colour schemes, helping each other etc. Sarah also released design sheets so we could try and work out our colour scheme first, mine is all sort greens and purples, based on The Potting Shed range of fabrics by Moda. I’m hoping to pick up a few more greens at the quilt show next weekend in Harrogate.

Down the Rabbit Hole BOMThe quilt is a ‘Medallion’ quilt, so we start at the centre and work outwards. This months’s task was a circle made from forty wedges!!! We made a strip first and then used her wedge template to cut all the wedges. Just as important as cutting accurately is stitching an accurate 1/4″ seam. We were encouraged to double check our seam width first as a tiny discrepancy makes a big difference when it’s multiplied forty times!

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We made the wedges up in quarter circles first, so we could check the angle was right. My first one was spot on but my other three needed a bit of fudging with the iron. I was very relieved when I finally stitched it into a complete circle to see it would pretty much lie flat with just a bit of extra pressing (AKA fudging!) in the centre.

My next job is to make some quarter inch bias binding to make stems which radiate out of the circle. Hopefully I’ll finish it before the next month’s pattern is released on 28th February.

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Splendid Sampler is nearly finished!

It’s time for a little celebration! I have just finished the last two blocks of my Splendid Sampler journey. We started a year ago, two blocks a week with a couple of weeks off at Christmas for good behaviour and on Sunday the final block design was released! Pat Sloan and Jane Davidson who are the architects of this amazing project are publishing a book with all the designs in, it’s out in a couple of months time, so if anyone fancies making themselves a Splendid Sampler, and learning so much a long the way…I can recommend it!

I’ve actually got three blocks to show you, block 97 was designed by Lynn Harris, it’s a mixture of a french Fleur de Lis and Hawaiian applique techniques. It’s called Fleur de Lei, I must admit I chickened out of the Hawaiian tecnique and just used bondaweb and blanket stitch. I used a variegated DMC thread, I wasn’t sure about the colours at first as the fabric is a very soft green whereas the thread had alot of yellowy green in it, but as soon as I started sewing with it I liked it, it just gives a bit of a subtle lift to the block.

The Splendid Sampler

The penultimate block was by Kimberly Einmo, it’s called ‘Four Corner Spinwheel’. I really enjoy doing pinwheels now so this was a pleasure to make. Kimberley describes this block as representing her quilting life; ‘I love travelling around the world to meet quilters from all four corners of the globe! My hectic –but fun — travel schedule is represented by the pinwheel and the fact that I often feel like my life is spinning by in a whirl as I travel to teach! But I wouldn’t trade it for anything. There are four blades which make up the double pinwheel and four triangles in the block corners which represent the four corners of the globe. I’m always happiest when I’m travelling and meeting quilters’

The Splendid Sampler

The final block was designed by Kate Spain, it’s called ‘Centred’. It was a lovely block to finish with, it took a bit of thought to work the colours out, and a bit of time and concentration (not to mention the odd outing for the stitch ripper!) to stitch it. I decided my rabbit fabric could have a final outing for this block, it seemed apt seen as they also had pride of place on the very first block, they are surrounded by a field of flowers!

Her inspiration for the block was the calmness that sewing and quilting can have, ‘I made my first quilt in 2009, around the time I designed Verna, my first fabric collection for Moda. The methodical attention, care and focus it takes to measure, cut, and sew fabric pieces together is a surprisingly calming activity that I enjoy more than I could have imagined. But the part I love most is free-motion quilting, nothing fancy, just whatever transpires on my home sewing machine. To me, it’s like doodling with thread and the meandering, unpredictable pathways draw me in to wander along and to see where they go. Work, deadlines and the busyness of every day life dissolve into a zen-like state where I feel peaceful, centered, and simply happy. The design of my “Centered” block is meant to reflect this feeling and all the tranquil moments I treasure at my sewing machine. ‘

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I completely agree with Kate on the relaxing nature of sewing, how you can lose yourself when sewing , by hand or machine. It’s also very satisfying, especially when you have finished 100 different blocks!

I’ve quilted over three quarters of my blocks and this is my pile of trimmed blocks ready to stitch together. I’ve trimmed them all to 8″ square as they need to be exactly the same size for quilt as you go. Just got to start stitching them all together…

The Splendid Sampler

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Tealed with a Kiss

How teal is teal? This is a question I’ve been pondering since I volunteered to make a block for the Tealed with a Kiss quilt. Kate blogs over on ‘Tall Tales from Chiconia’ and she regularly makes quilts to raise money for ovarian cancer, the colour representing ovarian cancer is teal. At the moment she is making and collecting blocks for a quilt entitled ‘Tealed with a Kiss’, so all the blocks have a cross within the design, so there will be lots of kisses.

I looked through my stash for some teal fabric and to my surprise I had very little. I’m surprised because it is a colour I like to wear, but I clearly haven’t seen many fat quarters I fancy in it. I remembered one I was using for my Splendid Sampler quilt, luckily I’ve nearly finished the quilt and there was enough left for a 12″ block. I found another one that coordinated and then found a scrap of cream cotton with gorgeous teal butterflies on. Cracked it, I thought…

Then I made the mistake of looking at the others that had been made, they looked a lot brighter than mine and I began to wonder where teal stops and turquoise began, or jade, or peacock blue…I’ve decided to make one up and let Kate decide, I have assured her that I won’t be offended if it’s made into a cushion instead 🙂 I’ll be keeping my eye open for brighter teals in future!

I found a pattern on the Aurifil website, it’s from one of their quilt-a-longs, I felt there was enough of a cross in this one. Kate had mentioned that she could do with some crosses with a teal background, so I used the butterflies and plain cream for the cross and the two teal (well I think they’re teal!) fabrics for the background.

The block design is 12.5″, Kate likes if poss a bit extra in case quilting takes up some width so I made the outer border 1/2″ wider than needed so it’s easy to trim to the required size.

So here is my teal block (I hope it’s teal anyway!!) it will be winging it’s way to Australia this week.

Tealed with a Kiss

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Another Sketchbook

There does seem to be a few Sketchbooks featuring here at the moment, there’s the international one organised by Anne Lawson in Australia, it’s called The Sisterhood of the Travelling Sketchbook, there’s about 14 of us contributing to it, all sorts of different things, paintings, poems, quilting, textile art…I think it’s in France at the moment, there’s another three to contribute before it’s my turn. I’m the penultimate contributor, so I get to see nearly everyone else’s art work in person. There is a website showing all  the pages so far, so have a look what everyone else has been doing.

Mountains Sketchbook

My embroiderers Guild have organised a Travelling Sketchbook withing the Guild, six of us in each group. We had to choose a theme and everyone will do something loosely based on it. My theme is mountains, we know in advance what everyone elses themes are so we can start thinking in advance. We’ll have each book for a month before we pass it on to the next. This is my sketchbook above and there’s a post about my first embroidery for it yesterday.

Catbells embroidery

We’ve also had a couple of talks at Embroiderers Guild about the usefulness of having your own sketchbook, for writing down ideas, inspirations, trying out different techniques. I decided to buy an extra sketchbook to have a go. One thing that has always put me off before is that I’ve got ideas bubbling round my head which have been there for months, if not years. They get modified every so often! I didn’t see how you would avoid having ideas for the same project in several different parts of the book, which wouldn’t be helpful. I’ve been assured however, that with these books the paper is heavy enough to carefully cut behind the spiral binding, remove the page and pop it back in somewhere else.

Of course I needed to make my sketchbook pretty 🙂

Rowandean embroidery

Whilst looking for something else I found a flower embroidery I had stitched at the Knitting and Stitching show in Harrogate back in 2014. Rowandean always have an activity table where you can just sit and embroider a small design for about £5, it’s like a little oasis in the hustle and bustle of the show! I thought it would look rather pretty on the front of my book. I found two co-ordinating batik fabric in my stash which complemented the embroidery. I didn’t have much of either, in fact the geometric batik was a 10″ square from a layer cake. I thought there was just enough with a bit of fudging!

Sketchbook Cover

I edged the embroidery with the feather batik, the purple left side is actually from the same piece, just a more purple area! I then stitched a strip of the geometric fabric to go around the spiral binding. I had enough of the feather fabric to do the back of the book too.

I found a length of green batik to line it with. I only had enough feather fabric left for one pocket, I didn’t actually have enough left of the geometric one to make a double sided pocket either,so it’s green lining on the inside of that one!

Sketchbook Cover

I used fusible fleece on the back of the main fabric and then stitched it all together. I edged stitched round to give a firm edge and my sketchbook is finished, looking very pretty 🙂

Sketchbook Cover

I’m linking up with Kathy’s Quilts for Slow Stitching Sunday, a celebration of all things stitched by hand, why not have a look what everyone else has been creating.

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Catbells

Catbells is featuring quite a lot here at the moment, it is my favourite fell, but it is also on my mind because when the Sisterhood of The Travelling Sketchbook arrives I want to do something about the wonderful countryside around me. After much thought I’ve decided to do an embroidery of Catbells, so these pieces are a bit of a practice run!

At Skipton Embroiderers Guild we have just started travelling sketchbooks within little groups of six. Last meeting we were all given an A5 sketchbook to cover and write a bit about our theme and our inspiration. This is my sketchbook;

Mountains Sketchbook

We also had to embroider the first piece…

Now I love embroidery when someone is telling me what to do, with a pattern, or a kit, or a book with a design, but to think up something on my own is way out of my comfort zone. I’d bought a beautiful selection of textured threads and textiles at the Knitting and Stitching show last year, but I’ve very quickly realised I haven’t got a clue what to do with them, I think I’ll be taking them to the next meeting to find out!

So here’s more thought processes…

I started off with a piece of noil silk which I painted with silk paints a couple of weeks ago, this is the one I got really wet so the colours blended a lot. I realised half way through that I’ve actually used the back, but I wanted that nice watery light that you get just after dawn.

I remembered an embroidery I had done a couple of years ago which was a kit by Stef Francis and used that as a basis for the techniques. I had some hand-dyed silk organza (??) in moss green and purple, I tore it into strips about 1.5″ wide and stitched the strips together with just a basic running stitch.

Catbells embroidery

My original plan was to bondaweb it to the background, having cut the shape out, however I was worried it would flatten too much and the white of the bondaweb would make it too harsh. Instead I pinned the strip fabrics to the noil, carefully cut out the outline and then blanket stitched along the skyline. I’m pleased with the effect, because the silk strips are not perfectly flat, you get shading and creases which look like the undulations on the side of the hills. I positioned the seams diagonal to represent the shadows on the hillside, the torn edges have a nice soft effect too.

I just had to embroider it now…

I found some gorgeous curly thread in just the right colours, I tried to actually sew with it but despite a big chenile needle it wasn’t going to happen, so I couched it down the overlaps of the silk.

Catbells embroidery

I decided to use two different embroidery stitches down each strip, trying not to repeat them. I limited myself to using two embroidery silks for the whole project so it didn’t have too much variety, I used DMC 4504 which is green and purple, and DMC 4065 which is light blue/greens and beige.

Catbells embroidery

I dug out a couple of embroidery books and came up with the following stitches; french knots, fly stitch, herringbone, wheatear, feather and chain stitch.

Catbells embroidery

My next dilemma was how to finish it. In the end I decided to back it with a medium weight fusible vilene, trimmed it with my rotary cutter and blanket stitched all round with DMC 4065.

I’m really pleased with my embroidery of Catbells, I think it does capture that soft light just after dawn when the fells are still shadowy. I would still like to work out a way of showing Derwentwater in front as well, with the reflection of Catbells,  but I haven’t got anything in my textiles box that I thought would work. There’s a quilt show in Harrogate at the end of the month so I’m hoping some of the stalls there might have something, ready for the next sketchbook!

Catbells embroidery

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The Splendid Sampler

splendid_button_TMMy Splendid Sampler journey is drawing to a close, the last one will be published on Sunday, then I’ve just got to put it all together! Over the last couple of days I’ve caught up, so I’m just embroidering block number 98, but these are the ones I’ve finished;

The first one I tackled I had been putting off for a couple of weeks, it’s a paper pieced block by April Rosenthal. It’s called ‘Tiny Miracles’, April says ‘Quilting and Motherhood are inexorably connected for me, and I can’t help but see a parallel between taking small pieces of fabric and creating something beautiful, and helping tiny lives build themselves into the magnificent people they are meant to be. These little ones, these Tiny Miracles, they are my Sun, my Moon, and my Stars. This block is a representation of the miracles in my life, my little ones, and the love, friendship, and joy quilting has brought me.’

The Splendid Sampler

I love foundation paper piecing now, but it still does cause a bit of trepidation before I start, hence the procrastination! I’ve found it’s no good doing paper piecing when your tired, I became well acquainted with my stitch ripper when one piece took three attempts to get it right…I decided it was time to go to bed! I think with paper piecing there are too many things to concentrate on, whether it’s big enough, the right way round, lined up with the right seam, stitching the right seam, flat…all sorts of things can go wrong if your mind wanders!

I eventually finished it the next morning, I’m pleased with it, my only niggle is that due to pattern placement one of the teal pin wheel points disappears into the background, but I think I’m getting picky in my old age!!

The next block I tackled was nice and straight forward, it’s a really pretty block called First Purse by Di Mill. Isn’t it sweet! A purse was one of  the first things she made as a child. It sounds like she had a mum just like mine…’My Mother was an only child and her mother didn’t sew or craft at all. I have always been in awe of how Mum taught herself to sew, knit, crochet – whatever she wanted to learn, she found a way of achieving that skill. Mum made all of my clothes and pyjamas when I was young. I can remember helping pick out the fabric for my dress and then waiting excitedly for Mum to finish sewing it. ‘

The Splendid Sampler

I chose pretty pink fabrics for this one and fussy cut a couple of birds too, the buttons at the top will be stitched on once I’ve quilted the block. I love this one!

Sunshine is the name of the next block. I love reading the inspiration behind the blocks, quite a few are about family, this one is designed by Kim Niedzwieki, she says ‘It was inspired from a simple sweet pencil pouch I made for my daughter,Katy. Every year I make an new pouch for her and wanted to create something to make her smile when she would see it. She is my little bit of sunshine, so it is a sunshine block’

The Splendid Sampler

The hardest part of this block was choosing the colours. The centre was easy as it’s the nearest I’ve got to yellow sunshine, there is a touch of yellow on two of them, the others are cream. In the end I decided on blues in the corners and greens along the sides. It was pretty straight forward to make and I’m pleased with how the colours have come out.

The final one in this group is by Cheryl Arkison and this one is called In the Sunshine. It’s a flag fluttering in the breeze. I picked blue fabrics for the background and I decided to make the flag my label for the quilt, so I’ve embroidered the name of the quilt, my initials and the date.

The Splendid Sampler

With just two left to make I’m up to date with sashing all the blocks and I’ve started sandwiching and quilting them all…making good progress!

 

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Button Back Skirt; Newlook 6876

Whilst I was making my coatigan in that gorgeous tweed last month, the fabric happened to lie next to a length of Avoca wool I treated myself to at an Embroiderers Guild meeting where Fabworks had a stand. The two fabrics went so beautifully together that as soon as I had finished the jacket, I started cutting out the skirt…

Avoca Donegal Tweed

The wool is absolutely gorgeous, it’s Donegal Tweed herringbone in a stunning peacock blue. It’s made by Avoca for Fabworks. Fabworks call it ‘Strut your Stuff Peacock’!! It feels wonderful, drapes well, and the colours just perfect for me! I’m running out of superlatives…I love this fabric! It was a bit of a treat, well a lot of a treat really, it’s £30 a metre, but it’s so beautiful I’m sure it won’t be the last length I buy. When I bought this the assistant had clearly sussed me straight away as she gave me a roll of tape with the quote ‘I can resist everything except temptation’ running down it!

Newlook 6876I decided to use a new pattern, Newlook 6876, I don’t remember buying this, in fact I’m pretty sure I picked it up from the swop pile at the Sew North meet up. I’m not sure how old it is either as the number no longer correlates to this pattern! It’s a simple straight skirt with either  a zip and a back pleat or a button back. I decided to make the button back.

I decided to be honest with myself and remeasure the important bits,namely waist and hips. One reason being that with a button down back, I really didn’t want it too snug!  I came out as a clear size 16, despite all my RTW being a size 12, I looked for the finished garment measurements for the hips but there were none I could see, so I duly cut out a 16…I made up the basic skirt and tried it on as I was about to attach the waistband, it was huge! I ended up taking at least 1/2″ off both sides, I tried just tapering it off to the side seam at the hips, but I ended up with a funny looking bulge mid thigh – not a good look! In the end I took it in right sown the side seams.

Newlook 6876

I lined it with some fabric I found in my lining stash, I’m not sure where I got it, which is a shame as it is rather nice, it’s one of those linings that actually feels quite heavy and drapy. I attached it at the waistband before handstitching the waistband down and then hand-stitched the lining sides to the button bands.

I stitched the buttonholes and the buttons on next. The buttons are navy ones from Samuel Taylors. The only bit I struggled with was the buttonhole on the waistband, with all the layers and interfacing I couldn’t physically get it under my buttonhole foot, I stitched one as near as I could but it was really too off-centre to use. I stitched a decorative button over the top of it and a trouser hook and bar underneath. The only other fastening I added was a press-stud just under the waistband as it tended to gape a bit there.

Avoca Donegal Tweed

Avoca Donegal Tweed

 

I hemmed the skirt with bias binding which is my preferred method for any bulky fabrics as there’s only one fold over, so I was surprised how bulky it looks in the photos, I don’t think it’s that obvious in real life fortunately.

I’m really pleased with my skirt, it feels very comfortable, it hangs nicely at the back too. I haven’t worn it out yet and time will tell with the button back makes me nervous – I’m too old for a dress malfunction to be amusing! I was tempted from the start to stitch up the back, just opening the top two and bottom two buttons…we’ll see! One interesting point with the buttons, I cannot button the skirt up at the back, I just can’t do it!! My fingers won’t work!  I have to swizzle it round to the front, button up and then swizzle back again! I even checked with the picture that I hadn’t done the buttonholes on the wrong side, as that is what it feels like.

…and I do think it goes well with my Coatigan 🙂

Newlook 6876

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A Rolling Landscape

A couple of weeks ago I showed you an embroidery I’d started at our Embroiderers Guild, we’d had a mini workshop on making Rolling Landscapes. The idea is that a long, thin embroidery of a scene is attached to an old fashioned cotton reel and wound round. I started stitching my favourite walk, Catbells in the Lake District.

When I got home I played about with silk paints and a bit more embroidery and this is what I finished up with;

Rolling Landscapes

I just needed a cotton reel…

My embroidery was just over 3″ tall, I searched on the internet but couldn’t find any the right size, they were either too small or huge (like the old cotton mill bobbins) I was browsing Folksy when I came across a wood turner who made beautiful weaving bobbins, just the right length.

Weaving Bobbins

I sent a message to see if there was any chance I could have one with a flat bottom so it would stand up. We exchanged several e-mails over the next couple of days whilst he determined what I actually wanted to do with the bobbin. He then suggested he made one with a 3″ base in oak and a spindle with a fancy end in yew. Perfect! I paid on Saturday, he made it over the weekend and posted it to me on Monday. I did chuckle though, I knew he must be from Yorkshire as all his e-mails started with the greeting ‘Now then’, when I finally found where The Turners in the Church were based it was in Bedale in North Yorkshire, about 40 miles away!

The Turners in the Church

The bobbin is beautiful, it feels like silk, I love wooden things, but this is just so tactile, I love it. I needed to attach the embroidery to it pretty firmly so it wouldn’t swizzle round when I was trying to wind it up. Obviously I didn’t want to use any kind of glue on my beautiful bobbin, I came up with the idea of using a length of bias binding to tightly bind round the spindle. I went up and down about three times, the bias helped to make it firm. I hand-stitched the end down and it worked perfectly.

 Bobbin

I decided to do a little extra embroidery on the back, as I wanted the picture to be on the inside. I embroidered ‘My Favourite Walk’ at the top and my initials and the date at the bottom. I then stitched the other end to the spindle. It winds round nicely, though it does tend to crease a bit inside, I’m just pretending they are the gullies down the side of the fells!

Rolling Landscapes

To keep it closed I attached a length of green ribbon to tie round it and a little leaf charm just to finish it off.

Rolling Landscapes

I really like the idea of a walk on a bobbin. My friend and I do a long distance walk every year and I’m just slightly tempted to try and do one of this years walk, St Cuthbert’s Way, over 60 miles from Melrose in Scotland to Lindisfarne off the Northumberland coast.

Rolling Landscapes

I’m linking up with Kathy’s Quilts for Slow Stitching Sunday, a weekly celebration of all things hand made. Why not click on the link and have a look what everyone else has been hand-stitching.

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