About Me

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Catton, Northumberland, United Kingdom
I love all kinds of stitching and enjoy learning, experimenting with and sharing new techniques. Married with 3 children, 2 daughters and a son, a dog and four cats, I also get involved with my daughters 3 horses.

Sunday, 30 May 2010

New Home

At long last we have completed the purchae of our dream home and hopefully my last move ever!  It has taken nearly three years to find a actually purchase and the dream we have been chasing is actually starting.  This is the view from the front door over our fields (all 80 odd acres of them) and beyond and still beautiful even in the rain.  Plans include a livery business, a proper studio with room for me to teach as well as some hens and a proper veggie plot but Rome wasn't built in a day and first we have to get the house habitable ready to move in before the end of June.  I think stitching (and blogging) may get a bit neglected for a while!

Friday, 21 May 2010

Amys Quilt Festival

Discovered this event via Mogs Blog and thought it sounded interesting.  Amy is hosting an online quilt festival and if you visit Amys Blog you can not only see (at the present count) 252 quilts but you can also share a picture of one your quilts and its story. 

Here's mine.

I'm not cheating - it is only one quilt but I made it double sided.  I made it for my daughter and started it around 4 years ago when she was 13.  She chose the animals she wanted from A Quilters Ark by Margaret Rolfe and I set to work piecing them using freezer paper templates.  When the animals were finished I then took a while to work out how to place them and also in finding a fabric that would blend with them all.  By now she is 17 and, although she says she still likes it, I am worried that it is too childish.  In addition we had been collecting fabric for this quilt at all the quilt shows we have visited together and I hadn't used half of it - it must be the most expensive quilt in history!  I decided to use some of the stash to create the backing, keeping the animal theme but in a more (I hope) sophisticated way.  I was pleased with the second quilt but it did give me a headache when I came to quilt.  In the end I free machine quilted leaves on the top using a varigated thread but put invisible thread on the bobbin so the quilting did not detract from the pattern on the back.  I know patchwork and quilting is traditionally about using what you have and improvising but I would have made life easier if I had followed a pattern or at least created my own plan when I started.  It was fun though and she still uses the animals on top - at least for now.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Teaser Tuesdays

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
Grab your current read
Open to a random page
Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Here is mine:-

"the most dazzling treasure recovered, the Tiffany diamond necklace of its day, the ne plus ultra for the dazzingly rich girl about town, was the fabulous gold scarab, the only one ever found in Asia Minor or the Aegean bearing the cartouche of Nefertiti, the famously beautiful wife of the eighteenth-dynasty, heretically monotheistic  Egyptian pharaoh Akhenaten."

page 44 -  The Way of Herodotus - Travels with the Man who Invented History by Justin Marozzi
Find more teasers  here
This is a change from my usual reading choice and was inspired by reading a review my son had written about it - here and the fact that I visited some of the countries the author visits last year.  I read the review (being a supportive parent!!) thought it sounded interesting and am now enjoying it.  I think it will appeal to anyone who has an interest in history and its interpretation through the ages.

Monday, 17 May 2010

Dandelion Days

I've not posted for a while because I have had a really busy couple of weeks.  The week before last we were in London visiting music colleges with my youngest daughter who is hoping to apply soon but I managed to squeeze in a visit to the Quilt Exhibition at the V & A.  It was well worth a visit, especially if you like to see antique quilts.  The quilts on display date from 1700 to 2010 and range from large bed quilts and bed hangings to small sewing accessories; domestic and commercially made quilts and some specially commissioned quilts from current quilt artists.  More details of the exhibition here http://www.vam.ac.uk/exhibitions/future_exhibs/Quilts/index.html  Linked to the exhibition is the Quilt of Quilts website where the general public are invitied to post pictures of their quilts and all the images together form a virtual quilt.  409 have been up-loaded so far so there is the potential for many happy hours browsing! http://www.vam.ac.uk/microsites/quilts/gallery/patterns
Whilst on the subject of exhibitions, I have been asked to mention an exhibition by Foggy Furze Quilters.  This will take place at Foggy Furze Library, Stockton Road, Hartlepool on Thursday 10th and Friday 11th June.  Entry is free and there is to be a raffle (first prize a quilt) in aid of the RNLI.  If any readers are in the area on those days I am sure it will be well worth a visit.
Finally, to the dandelions.  I had a friend staying with me last week and spent lots of time out and about visiting local attractions and, thanks to the mainly good weather, country walks.  Is it my imagination or are there more dandelions than usual this year?  Some roads were lined with them - very sunny and cheerful - and I wondered if our cold winter and late spring has perhaps provided good conditons for them.  The down side is that they also seem to have taken over our lawn!