Happy New Year!

The period between Christmas and the new Year proved to be quite productive.

I started out just trying to tidy my sewing room. Then projects came to light that had floundered for one reason or another.

So I ended up putting the finishing touches to around five projects in one way or another. Mostly it meant completing the top, but for one or two it meant the quilting and binding also, so a real finish!

The boxed diamonds is now finished and pressed.

The Applique from Patchwork Dog and Basket has borders and is all appliquéd .

And here are a couple of other projects that I worked on.

The weather has been pretty grey and wet making the taking of pictures outside no realistic option. So here are a couple of the tops on my floor!


This is a Summer Top which was inspired by and antique quilt I have. It is quilt as you go but with no batting. I had always thought I would make this larger, but now am pleased with it as a table throw for the summer in the garden. I know I will work on another but not as close to the original as this one was.

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The binding is now cut and ready to press, so this will be finished by the end of the week!




This is a block of the week I did from the Barbara Brackman site last year. I think it finished in September time. I have never made a sampler quilt and put all the blocks together with now sashing or the like. This was great chance to do that. I am so pleased with it! Have still not completed an appliqué block  in the corner though!




And this last one is my scrappy Triangles I cut on my Sizzix. I had basically sewn the top and then decided it needed to be larger. I was just not happy with the size. So it was just more sewing to make it bigger:



Hope you all had time for stitching over the break?

Loose Ends

Some fun things that have been adding to my in tray that you might might find fun too!

Landauer , my publishers in the US have a new Blog on their website. It is full of fun hints and tips and some nice pieces to read about some of the authors.

Go and see what’s happening there and add it to your bookmarks!


Then, over on the Sizzix site in the UK they have put up a new Quilting page. Makes everything easier to find. Go and take a look and see if there is anything to add to your Christmas list!



And last but not least, Fabrications Magazine did a really nice piece from the Jelly Roll Quilts and Gifts book:

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Its’ in the October/November 2013 edition. So time to run one up and get it quilted for the Summer!

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Sizzix Blog Hop Project: Tree Coasters





Welcome to the Sizzix Blog Hop!




For my project I have sewn some very quick and versatile Tree Coasters.

You will see that they are very versatile, and can be used for other things!

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I think these are the perfect size (4 1/2 in x 6 1/2 in) as they easily hold your coffee mug and with room for a biscuit:

Sizzix christmas trees17Here is how I started.

I collected together fabric scraps for the trees and the backgrounds. I ran these through my Sizzix machine with the 657622 die:


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Here is what I needed for each tree top:

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They are quick and easy to sew as all the corners are cut so that everything fits perfectly:

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Press the tree patch towards the background fabric:

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For the trunks cut fabric strips 1 1/2in wide, and for the background 2in wide.

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Sew the strips together along the long sides and press the seams towards the trunk:

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Now cut into sections 2 1/2in long:

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Stitch one of these to the base of each tree:

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Press the seams towards the tree:

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Now sandwich the pieced tree block with batting and a backing fabric that are a little larger than the patchwork:

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I machine quilted horizontally across the block. At the base of each tree I used a decorative stitch from a selection on my sewing machine. You can just use straight stitch though as I did on some of the others, or choose a wavy stitch and use that.

As these are so small I generally do not need to baste them together before machine quilting when I use a walking Foot.

If you want to though you can spritz with 505 Spray baste for extra stability.

If you have more time these are lovely to sit and hand quilt with Big Stitches and thick threads!

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For a quick finish I then quilted around the edge of the block 1/4in in from the raw edge. I used the same thread as for my quilting and went round each block twice for emphasis:

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Then I trimmed off the surplus fabric and thread with pinking shears:

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Here are some more, a whole forest!



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You can see how I used different quilting. They are really quite addictive:

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And in action:

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If you can bare to part with them, they make great gift tags for presents for special people! Just thread some ribbon through the top of the tree and write in a permanent marker on the back.

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You can use four of these as a little mat:

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You can see from the blocks placed here that you will need to cut a 2 1/2in square for the centre before sewing the blocks together. Mine is just a mock up. You will sew the blocks together before quilting them ! and you can still use the quick finish around the edges!

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And you can use them as a garland too:

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If you have other ideas as to what you could use your Tree Coasters for this holiday season, do let me know!

Don’t forget to check the other Blogs this week for lots of Sizzix ideas, and enter to win the prizes!


Thanks for stopping by!

Sizzix Blog Hop Week!


Don’t forget to look to see what we are making this week ready for Christmas on the Sizzix Blog Hop!





Monday18thNovember-KatyJones – http://www.imagingermonkey.blogspot.co.uk/

Tuesday19thNovember-HadleyGordon – http://flyingblindonarocketcycle.blogspot.co.uk/

Wednesday20thNovember-CarolynForster – http://www.carolynforster.co.uk/wordpress/

Thursday21stNovember-AngelaSouthey – http://www.sizzix.co.uk/blogs?id=4f79aefffb60b56634000456

Friday22ndNovember -KerryGreen – http://verykerryberry.blogspot.co.uk/



Katy has made a fab stocking today, and I am having a project on Wednesday.

There are prizes to be won so make sure you see what everyone is up to this week!



Sizzix Blog Hop: Spring Wreath


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For those of you who have not stopped by before, I hope you enjoy seeing the sorts of things I stitch!

For my Spring Project I used the Plain Leaves Die. For all the patchwork dies, I am used to cutting my fabric with the Sizzix, but for the appliqué that I do I use the die to help me design the finished project and then to cut all the shapes from Freezer Paper! The Plain Leaves gives me one of my favourite applique shapes. There are endless ways to make great applque with this shape.

When I started to think about all the possiblities that this leaf shape offered, I cut shapes to play with from coloured craft paper. I choose to use the Large leaf (you get two sizes on the Die).  Cutting the leaves from craft paper easily on the machine really opens up the ease of designing!

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Here are some of my ideas:

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I decided on a wreath of reds and pinks cut from my scraps with a green stem.

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For this project I needed:

Background Fabric, 20in square ( I used Moda Essential Dots)

Wadding/Batting, 22in square

Backing , 22in square

Freezer paper to cut 29 large leaves

Red and pink fabric scraps

Green fabric for the stem, 1 1/4in wide, 36in long, cut on the bias

Binding for the mat, 2 1/2in wide, 90in long (three strips cut from the width of the fabric)

To begin:

1) Cut the fabric for the background and press into quaters and diagonally. This will help you with placement.

2) Cut the freezer paper on your Sizzix.

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3) Make the circle for the wreath stem by joining the bias strip to form a continuous loop. Then fold wrong sides together into thirds, and either tack/baste down the centre by hand or, I use the largest stitch on the sewing machine. This will easily pull out later.

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4) Position the circle on the background fabric. I often use a plate to help centre this! Pin with the raw edge side down. Applique in place. Remove the tacking.

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5) Prepare the leaves. Iron the shiny side of the paper to the wrong side of the fabrics, allowing enough room to cut them out and adding the seam allowance.

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6) Turn the seam allowance over to the back of the shape and tack in position. The freezer paper shapes cut on the Sizzix gives a nice crisp finish!

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8) Pin the leaves around the stem. I have 10 in the centre and 19 around the outside. Applique down starting on a curved side, not on a point. Remove the tacking and the freezer paper before the last half inch of the shape is sewn down.

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9) Once the applique is complete layer with the batting and backing fabric. I quilted around all of the appliqué. I filled the background in, by dividing it into quarters, and filling each section with lines marked 1in apart. You can see this here on the back of the piece .

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10) When quilted you can trim the backing and batting and then sew on the binding. I use  2 1/2in strips, that you can cut on the sizzix, folded wrong side together and pressed to make a double fold binding.

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Don't forget to pop over to the other blogs this week:

Wednesday 20th March  , Laura Taylor

Thursday 21st March , Hadley Gordon

Friday 22nd March, Anna Draicchio




To make the week even more exciting, you can enter this exclusive competition to get started with your patchwork and quilting adventure….. CLICK HERE to enter! The closing date is 28th March at 10am GMT.

Sizzix Blog Hop Week!

This is the week of the Sizzix Blog Hop, as the title of this post does actually already say!


Pop over to Katy today to see what she has made.

I will be showing you my project tomorrow, so don't forget to drop by.

In the meantime, a bit of a teaser:

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A Lot of Patches

I seem to have sewn for miles recently!

The first quilt top is the Scrappy Trip from Bonnie Hunter.

It is not put together in these shots, but is now (believe me!):

I did 36 blocks.

I mainly put a blue in as the diagonal.

Another scrap busting quilt is this, which I am calling 'Out of the Blue'. It was an attempt to use up some of my navy.

I used the Sizzix Die to cut the triangles. You can also make a cute star with this die, I will do that another day!

This made for easy and accurate piecing, and I cut the triangles from 5in charm squares and 5in strips of fabric.


This quilt may still be worked on as I think it should be bigger than it is at the moment, but I am in need of a rest!

I just love these one patch type quilts to eat into the stash!