Monday, 23 September 2013

3 Random Things

1. Back when we were pregnant Sharon and I arranged a little baby goodies swap.  Well my lovely parcel arrived last week and I was very spoiled with lovely cloths, a flannel blanket, mini sewing kit and gorgeous pixie hat for James.

Swap goodies from A Prairie Sunrise

2. I made another 2 fabric baskets


3. Summer is well and truly over and I've pulled out all my Christmas fabric to choose some to make a stocking for the baby boy using this lovely pattern from Camille. (And yes I just quickly pulled the duvet cover over all the random stuff on my bed to take this photo - keeping it real!)

Christmas Fabric

Saturday, 21 September 2013

Adventures with Wool

I started knitting at the end of last year when I was pregnant and last blogged my adventures with wool here

Since then I've finished the matinee jacket (and made James wear it at least 3 times before our heatwave!)

James' Matinee Jacket

I've also started a new hat for James

A new project - a baby hat!

and almost finished my crochet ripple blanket

Crochet blanket almost there!

But my biggest challenge was this little jumper

James' Jumper

I spent most of a week's holiday at my parents working on it when I had lots of babysitters (and so my Mum could help me with the neckband).  I proudly cast it off and with just the last few side seams to sew up, held it up to said cherub and very quickly realised there was no way it would go over his head.  It was thrown down in disgust and left behind with my Mum to wave some magic.  

James' Jumper Back

Which she most certainly did with the addition of these clever buttons.  And I couldn't resist a picture of the little man himself modelling it!


Friday, 20 September 2013

Ben's Quilt

Remember this little stack of fabric?

Making fabric combinations - red & grey elephants.

Well I finally made it into a quilt hurrah! In fact I made it a month or so ago for friends who live nearby and had a little boy 3 months after James was born. The very first quilt I gave away was a little playmat I made for Ben's older brother Adam. (I'm rather embarrassed looking at it now but it's nice to see how far I've come with my quilting.

Ben's Quilt

Simple tumbers (cut using a template - I really need a Sissex!), backed in Ikea hippo print, quilted 1/4" in from the seams and a Bonnie & Camille spotty binding.

Ben's Quilt Back

This one was hard to give away - so just as well I have enough Tumblers left to make a little pram quilt for James.

Linking up with Finish it up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts 


which this week is at MissyMacCreations

Wednesday, 18 September 2013


Erm now where was I?  Is there anyone still here?  It's been ages since I blogged anything but I have been doing a tiny bit of sewing over the past couple of months.  Now that I don't have a sewing room I find it easier to work on one main project at a time (with a little bit of cheating with different things at the weekend!)

Rachel's Quilt Blocks

My current Work in Progress is this huge quilt as you go quilt for my sister's 30th (she is 31 later this month . . . . . .)  I've got a little system in place where my machine is set up on the kitchen table and I can sew a few strips at a time when the baby boy naps.  I now have 21 out of 36 done and I've run out of wadding so can fully justify working on something else until I create some more wadding scraps!

Linking up for the first time in ages with 

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Saturday, 13 July 2013

A lovely gift

Hello! I should say straight off that the lovely quilt below wasn't made by me - it was made by the lovely Reene who blogs at Nellie's Niceties.

James' quilt - made by Reene

The fabric is gorgeous and it's the perfect size for a lovely play mat for James.

Fabric detail

Reene designed this quilt herself - isn't it fabulous. The pattern will be released together with kits for making it through Simply Solids in time for Festival of Quilts.  You can read all about it and see other versions of the quilts on Reene's post here.

Quilting detail

In other news things have been a little quiet on this blog recently - it's been a challenging few months and I haven't been doing a lot of sewing.  You can't have missed the blog posts from everyone introducing themselves before the Fat Quarterly Retreat.  I made the difficult decision a few weeks ago not to go this year - the timing just isn't right for me.  I will be sorry to miss it and especially not to catch up with everyone but there will be other years! 

Friday, 17 May 2013

My new favourite quilt!

This is my entry into the Scrap Quilt category of Blogger's Quilt Festival


I have been making this quilt for a very long time.  It is from Crazy Mom Quilts 9 patch a day quilt. Every time I made a quilt I used the scraps to make 9 patches.  I love it because it reminds me of lots of quilts I have made and given away like this one and this one and this one.


I decided that being 8 and a half months pregnant was the perfect time to sash, baste and quilt a 66" x 90"quilt!  In fact I finished machine sewing the binding on to the front half an hour before I went into labour.


I've been hand sewing the binding on in 10 minute gaps between baby feeding and cuddling and a trip to the mother in law's garden at the weekend provided the perfect photo backdrop.


Saturday, 13 April 2013

Lovely handmade gifts

My favourite thing about blogging and social media is all the lovely people I have met online (& some in real life too).  I am lucky enough that some of these people have become friends.  And James and I have been sent some lovely gifts by some of them too.

Engraved wooden heart from sewjustinesew

Engraved wooden heart from Justine

Burp cloth from sewonderfulife

Appliqued burp cloth from Catherine

Burp cloths from verykerryberry

Burp cloths from Kerry

I can't wait to meet/catch up with these lovely ladies at the Fat Quarterly Retreat in July.

You may remember the progress on my crochet blanket:

Crochet blanket progress

Well my Mum decided to make one too and luckily for James and I she is a lot quicker than me so he has a finished blanket!

Crochet blanket made by my Mum

Monday, 1 April 2013

March in Review

Well March was a very different month for me!  There wasn't a lot of blogging and having a baby also limits your fabric buying somewhat!  (This month I used up 8.75 yards and only added 2.5 yards to my stash giving me a net use of 6.25 yards).

I finished my Summersville cushions for the nursery.

Summersville cushions in residence!

I also decided that being 8 and a half months pregnant was the perfect time to finish a very old UFO.  

Scrappy 9 patch top

I sashed all the blocks on my scrappy 9 patch, pieced a back, basted and quilted this when I started my maternity leave at the beginning of March.  I finished attaching the binding by machine half an hour before I went into labour!!!

Quilting done, now to choose binding. Rather than more scrappy colour thinking of a charcoal solid to frame it - thoughts?

I absolutely love this quilt but my favourite finish from this month and without a doubt the best thing I have ever made is my little boy, James Ronan who arrived on 13th March.  

Linking up with:

Lily's Quilts

Friday, 15 March 2013

He's here!

James Ronan arrived at 2.38 pm on 13.03.13 weighing 7lbs 2 oz. We are all doing fine!

Monday, 11 March 2013

Summersville Cushions

What can I say - I am so pleased with these cushions!

Summersville Cushions

I followed Lily Quilts tutorial on Moda Bakeshop.  I'm not usually one for skinny borders - I'm far too lazy for the precision required but I am pleased I persevered with these.

Summersville Collage

The backing is more Summersville and I used fusible fleece for the first time on the front and backs and would definitely use it again - suits my lazy side as no need for quilting!

Summersville Cushion Backs

And as there is no baby to go in it yet these are currently residing in the baby's cot with it's matching quilt.

Summersville cushions in residence!

Saturday, 9 March 2013

11 random things

Pippa over at Pippa's Patch nominated my blog for a Liebster award.  

To qualify, you need to have under 200 hundred followers (me) or be under 6 months old in blogging terms, and then do the following:

1.List 11 random things about yourself

2. Answer 11 random questions

3. Choose 11 blogs to pass it on to

4. Create 11 questions for those 11 people

I've done this a few times before and I am running out of time and energy fast these days so I hope it's ok with Pippa if I tell you all 11 random things about me and answer her 11 random questions only.  I love finding out a little bit more about the bloggers I follow and hope you do too.  However if you would like to play along and qualify please consider yourself nominated by me!

So 11 random things about me:

1. I was born in Ireland and lived there until I was almost 21.   I was supposed to move to England for 1 year only but on my first weekend here met my now husband (in an Irish bar as you do!) and have stayed ever since.  My Irish accent has sadly almost all but disappeared.

2. I pretty much bought a new car today.

3. I spent a summer during university working at Gap and waitressing in San Francisco.

4. I don't like the texture of anything wooden in my mouth - so I can't lick an ice lolly once it gets to a certain point or eat chips with a wooden fork.

5. I like the light switches to be the right way up and doors properly closed (not ajar).

6. My middle name is Iris.

7. In real life I am a solicitor and spend half my working week in Court (in my head I am like the Assistant District Attorney's in Law and Order, the reality is sadly very different!!!)

8. At the moment I'm on maternity leave as my first baby is due in 11 days.

9. I don't wear pink a lot or use it to decorate in my house but I seem to have a lot of it in my stash.

10. I didn't pass my driving test until the third attempt.

11. I am still amazed that I have 90 people who follow my blog and lovely people who leave nice comments every week.

And answering Pippa's 11 questions:

1) Name 4 things that are in reaching distance of you right now 
My phone, a quilt, a notebook and a bottle of fizzy water

2) What would your dream quilt shop be like?
The fabric would be free!

3) Are you a morning person or a night owl?
Night owl

4) Sweet or Savory ?
Ohh difficult -  I couldn't live without chocolate but whilst I have been pregnant I have gone off sweet things and love cheese.

5) Stripes or Spots ?
I love both but if you make me choose spots.

6) What 3 things would you take with you to space ?
My husband, a notebook and a quilt.

7) Who's your favourite fabric line/designer?
I can't choose one - can I pick 11?  If not I like most things Sweetwater for Moda do.

8) If you could describe yourself in 4 words what would they be?
I found this really difficult so cheated and asked my husband who said "Chatty, Confident, Enthusiastic and Compassionate"

9) Do you drink coffee or tea or something else ?
I don't like tea and mostly drink coffee and water.

10) Why did you start/do you blog?
I started my blog because I wanted to keep a record of all the things I made.  I was amazed to discover this lovely online community.  Whilst I love being part of it I wanted to make sure that blogging remained fun, something I enjoy and never became an obligation.  Hopefully I'm managing that.

11) Have you met any RL bloggers ?
Yes lots!  I had met a few at Festival of Quilts in Birmingham in 2011 and then met lots of lovely bloggers at the Fat Quarterly Retreat last year (including Pippa).  And I'm hoping to meet lots more this year too.

And because a post without a photo seems dull here's a picture of some fabric I may have treated myself to after a stressful Thursday.

Making fabric combinations - red & grey elephants.

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Work in Progress Wednesday

I've made some huge progress on a very old WIP this week.  My scrappy 9 patch blocks are now a finished quilt top!

Scrappy 9 patch top

When I first started quilting I cut 2.5" squares from scraps for each quilt or project I made.  I gradually made these into 9 patches intending to make them into a Crazy Mom Quilts 9 patch quilt.   (And for those of you who suggested my next quilt should be for me - this one definitely is - lots of memories of previous projects!)

However I planned this quilt before I discovered how much I hated sashing so these sat in a pile for a long time.  But after some deliberating on Twitter and Instagram regarding the border, the quilt top is finished.  The backing is going to be pieced from my stash - possibly Ikea numbers print or solids mixed in with whatever else I can find.  This is supposed to be a scrappy quilt after all!  Any ideas on quilting - there is no way I can attempt FMQ on this so it will be some sort of straight line quilting?  I was going for low effort and thinking of quilting 1/4 inch either side on the sashing and not going through the 9 patches? 

Summersville Cushion tops

I've also made 3 cushion tops following Lily Quilts Moda Bakeshop tutorial and once my fusible fleece arrives I'm hoping to finish these off quickly.

No finishes or new projects started either but I think I have enough on the go at the moment (2 weeks until due date eek!)

Linking up with: 
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Friday, 1 March 2013

February in Review

My monthly check in on the goals I set here at the beginning of the year.  February has been another good month for me.  I finally finished work and am really enjoying being on maternity leave.  This month seemed to involve receiving a lot of lovely handmade gifts made by talented friends and family which I have blogged about here and here.


However I have managed to get some things made myself this month.  Unsurprisingly they are all baby related - sorry!

February Collage

And I've made a little progress on some of my WIPs too.

February WIP Collage

The sewing room transformation into nursery is now almost complete - I will bore you all with some photos of the finished room with all its handmade bits soon!  I am managing quite well with my stash being stored in a cupboard in our bedroom and the machine set up downstairs.  It's making me be a lot tidier for sure!

This month I've managed to use up 14 yards and only added 4 to my stash so that a net use of 10 for February - so far so good this year!  (In case you were wondering why my stash use is so big for not a lot of makes I count something as used when it is finished and the bunting and quilt were heavy on the stash!)


I've managed to keep up with blogging this month and have been trying to focus on taking slightly better photos of my projects (being home in daylight hours certainly helps!).  

I've also done a new blog header which I'm rather pleased with.  I am usually not very technical at all but I followed That Girl That Quilt's tutorial and it all seems to work ok. Click through and let me know what you think!

I'm not making any big plans for next month - having a baby will be quite sufficient!  I expect that I will keep sewing a few little projects though to keep me occupied while I wait!

Linking up with:

Lily's Quilts

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Work in Progress Wednesday

It's been ages since I posted a WIP Wednesday post.  I am now down to 3 quilts in my WIP list (not including my 2 long term hand sewing projects).  However I have only made progress on one of them this week.

Little windows block progress

These are some blocks for a little windows quilt I started in a class years ago now.  I still love the red & aqua colour combination.  I can't decide how big to go with this - do I make it into a pram or snuggle quilt for baby or keep going and make a decent lap sized quilt for me?  Any suggestions?

Crochet blanket progress

I'm also making slow progress on my crochet blanket - I need my Mum to come and visit again to help me speed it up!

No progress
  • 9 patch quilt
  • Rachel's quilt
  • Spring Carnival cushion

I have, however, finished quite a few projects since my last WIP post - unsurprisingly baby related! Two baby quilts blogged here and here.

Fabric buckets as a swap for the friend who made this balloon picture for the nursery.

More fabric buckets for a friend

Bunting for the nursery made from Make Life and Summersville fabrics.


And finally a ribbon tag blanket for baby (inspired by Sarah)

Ribbon tag blanket

New projects

Thanks to the supply of an emergency FQ of Summersville from the lovely Trudi I can start making these fabrics into cushions.  I am following Lynne's Moda Bake shop tutorial

Next project - cushions!

Linking up with: 

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced