Crafting, fun and friendship

Crafting, fun and friendship

Wednesday, 23 January 2013



Good Morning from a wintry, white Wiltshire! This is what my garden has looked like for the past few days, about 6 inches of lying snow..the white blob to the right of the steps is a little stone ornament of an otter (Oscar, in fact), you can just see his little nose poking out from his snowy blanket!
This a sedum plant in my front garden - I didn't dead head it in the autumn and so the flat plate-like flowers were the perfect 'catchers' of the fluffy stuff....
They look like mad mushrooms, lol!! in fact, all this gorgeousness would be perfect, if only it wasn't for the fact that our central heating boiler has turned up its toes...great timing, huh? 

Anyway, back to the desk....
As we've been confined to barracks for a few days now, I've done quite a bit of sewing and sorting out of items to send off to folk for their charity projects. All I need now is for the Post Office to be open :)

My friend wanted a pretty drawstring bag to keep her medical bits and pieces in and she's a Pink Gal, so I used some scraps from the wedding bunting I made last October and some ribbon for the drawstring.

Using some of the bunts from that big box featured last week. An ex-colleague had a baby girl recently (Thea, isn't that a pretty name?) so hopefully she'll like some bunting with which to decorate the nursery!

Then I made some covers for little packs of tissues to send off with the charity uses up scraps, they're handy and people tend to buy stuff that doesn't cost too much!!

Of course, you do realise that I could have spent all this extra time indoors doing all the house work that has been neglected for a while....hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha....!!!
Oh, I crack myself up sometimes....sighs happily....

But the single item of which I am most proud is my first comforter/quilt for Jo's LillyBo appeal. 

On top is the Bargain £3 a metre fabric (yay!), underneath is a soft royal blue fleece with some batting sandwiched in between...

I made some border edging from scraps, choosing the brightest I had to co-ordinate with the animals. 

Serious question to all you proper quilters out it better to use bias binding for the edging?? And if so, why??
So, this has been a learning curve for me. I feel as if I've cheated by not making patchwork from scratch it is.....

Lol - that's probably the only photo I like of me!! So, I hope it's ok, Jo - I'm in the process of doing another and will get them sent off to you, snow permitting, as soon as I can :)

Hope you have a great week wherever you are and whatever the weather is!!


  1. Your blanket is fab I don't know where you find the ime to fit it all in . Hugs Pam x

  2. Hi Jan, I can see that your sewing machine has been putting in a lot of overtime due to the inclement weather. I've got the sewing-machine-from-hell out and even managed a straight line of zigzag stitching which is progress indeed - maybe I'll make friends with it eventually :)

    Your quilt is wonderful - that fabric is so colourful and cheerful and perfect for a child to love. In my experience, you don't use bias binding to edge quilting. Usually, the edging is made from strips of fabric - similar to the way you have edged yours.

    Have a great WOYWW. Elizabeth x (too early for a number)

  3. Lovely snow photo, and you have been unproductive during your enforced incarceration. We did get out tonight to visit our friends for our weekly card playing evening, and even our road was reasonably clear, although it is snowing again now. Take care down there. xx Maggie

    1. That did not get types properly. I think the Kindle just put in the wrong word and I was too sleepy to notice. I meant to say "you have been so productive". Sorry about that. I must try to turn off the predictive text, but it can be useful at times. xx Maggie #20

  4. Wow you have been busy. I love the fabric on the quilt it would have been a shame to cut it up all those animals.... carnage!
    I have started my quilt too but it is patchwork so i can use up all the itsy bitsy pieces
    enjoy the rest of your confinment
    janet #30

  5. I seem to be in the pocket of the UK with no snow at all. Snow all over England, Aberdeenshire is under feet of it, and in my wee corner of Scotland there's sod all!

    Love all your sewing projects, there's nothing better to do when the weather is bad than to craft :)


  6. Everywhere I look today I see snow (it is helping me keep cool...sort of). Love the comforter! I'll have to pull out my sewing machine one day!

    1. Oops, I'm actually #39...I should put my glasses

  7. Skipping past the snow scenes I was met with a lovely colourful WOYWW, it's wonderful. I'm pinching lots of ideas today off people Jan. Off you I'm taking the tissue holder thank you very much.
    Have a good week and thanks for showing us such a nice page
    Lynn x

  8. Doesn't everything look fab in a snow blanket?! I am going to check out my sedum to see if I have mushrooms too - I'd better hurry as it is starting to thaw here today. Your quilt is fab. I like the idea of making it snuggly with fleece. Happy WOYWW to you from Helen 42

  9. What a fab quilt Jan....and you've already finished it! I'm just at the sorting fabric into colour stage :-)
    A x #47

  10. Brrrr. chilly. Hate that your boiler is being a turtle. There are a stackof tutorials and advice about edges on Pinterest, I'll link a couple over to you later - but meantime..does it need to be any different to the way you've done it? It looks totally fab. The fleece backing was such a good idea.

  11. Ha I'd just said to myself that sedum looks like huge mushrooms when I read further and what did you say!!! Great minds or what!!! Why oh why do boilers die when you need them most. I hope you tell it whose boss very soon and get warm and toasty again.
    Love the name Thea, how pretty.
    A quilt already...oh heck. I haven't even worked out how to do one yet.....u tube where are you. I may well be coming to pick your brain.
    Happy WOYWW
    Hugs Lisax #60

  12. Gorgeous quilt, cosy, warm and bright too. Gosh you have been a busy bunny this week. Have a Great WOYWW BJ#27

  13. Hi LLJ . . . oh your garden looks pwetty! Have a great day. Hope the boiler gets fixed SOOOOON.

    Sarn xxx

  14. Love, love,l love your quilt and so glad you showed it! I was panicking over doing mine in 4 inch squares and did not have a clue about the edges so thank you so much, going out to get some fabric tomorrow for mine. Sorry to hear about the boiler, hope it gets mended soon! Happy WOYWW, Anne x #57

  15. Ohooo your snow looks cold! ours has GONE< it rained in the night!
    I love what you made, it has owls, and my daughter (and me!) is buying lots of things with owls for our new grand daughter, must go check out your store!
    (Lyn)was #83

  16. Ohh your quilt looks gorgeous and that snow pics are amazing. But I can say that when I have no need of a boiler in our stinking hot australian summers.
    Sandra @67

  17. blanket is lovely!
    keep warm x

    Happy WOYWW Mrs.C #45

  18. Smashing job there Lunch Lady Jan and quite sure your quilt will meet the grade well and truly and housework we all know that can wait.. well done, great share!! Shaz in Oz.x #50 something..

  19. Love the quilt, and your beautiful snowy Wiltshire!Have a great week, Hugs Shaz xx #73

  20. Oh poor little Oscar! I have a dragon in my garden which looks similar - and don't even think about the little cat ornaments, they've totally disappeared! There are little bird feet shapes and cat paws going across the lawn in the snow, totally different directions thankfully! Love all your creative 'shows' you are so talented. Happy WOYWW! Karen 94 x

  21. Your snow is beautiful. Mine didn't get a chance to look like that what with three teenage boys trying to make inappropriate snowmen with it!
    The quilt is lovely just the way it is, there are no rules in life, we make our own!

    Jakixx #90

  22. Fab quilt Jan. Just wondered - have you stitched through any of the animals to secure the batting - quilted all layers together? Annie and I were just saying we might machine round shapes or even put a few hand stitches here and there to keep it all together - what do you think? x Jo

  23. Love your garden winter photos, the sun has just come out here after days of darkness and snow - soooo happy! Sorry about the boiler - sods law they call it! Your LillyBo quilt is just sooo cute! I want to make one too - but I have never made one before so I am a bit worried!
    Lots of hugs,

  24. I love looking at everyone's snow pics this week, but wish it would go now! You have kept busy - had to maybe, to keep warm! Hope your boiler is ok soon!! Love love love all the fab things you've been making - especially the quilt. Have a (warm) week! Helen, 9

  25. So much snow, yes it would be better inside by the fire. Love the quilt. #99

  26. Housework can be done any time you were right to craft as you have made some lovely stuff.
    Ria #92

  27. OMG! Outstanding fabric. I just LOVE it. But then I still read kids books.... :)

    Happy WOYWW

    MA (11)

  28. You’re always so industrious Jan!
    That fabric was perfect for the quilt and it doesn’t matter that it’s not patchwork because some little kiddy is going to love it anyway.

    Happy Crafting!

    Sue @ 111

  29. YOur garden is a winter wonderland!
    love all your makes and especially that quilt, the fabric is gorgeous and it looks so cosy!

  30. Wow, that is quite a blanket of snow you got there! Love the cupcake fabric and it is PINK! #125

  31. Oh how I loved seeing your snowy garden and the quirky things that nature does to make non-deadheaded past-their-prime flowers delightful! Part of me so envies being a snowy shut-in, left to my delightful crafts and stitching! You, dear soul sister, have made the right choice in choosing your beautiful blanket work over housework drudgery! Not to worry, because the dust will always wait for us...unlike the creative muse. Wouldn't it be fantastic if we could all be Lady Granthams with a full staff downstairs to take care of the cooking, cleaning and mess? Funny though, I don't think Lady Grantham is even as productive as we are with all we have to do!! I love the fabric you chose for the blanket. We don't always need to fuss with the patchworking to produce a beautiful piece. Hugs to you, and stay warm! Happy WOYWW! Sandy Leigh #112

  32. Hi Jan, just came back to answer your question about the hangers. I did want to make a hanging with fabric and using that photo transfer paper with the lovely images I got, but it is really expensive and knowing me I will make mistakes - so not sure now, will have to have a re-think. I will use them at some point though. A x #57

  33. That's a lovely quilt. The colours are certainly cheering on this dull grey day

  34. Liking your mushrooms there Jan. Your quilt is gorgeous too. I shall try and have a day on Sunday.
    As for bias binding, I don't use it on many of my quilts as quilts tend to be straight and I mitre the corners mostly. Can I ask if you have quilted any of your quilt to keep the layers together? Otherwise the batting may separate and go lumpy on washing! Most people put them in the machine these days and they are not gentle! Maybe if you "tie" it?

  35. Snow, snow, snow... yes, we have it too, I keep going out and clearing the paths and it keeps coming down. Just not playing fair at all! I LOVE your quilt, it is so bright and cheery and will make some little person very happy indeed! Annette #18

  36. Oh! it's gorgeous! Fabulous fabricand I love it and didn't know you've actually finished one so that's two with Annette's (Voodoo Vix) and a half, as my blocks aren't yet sewn together. So exciting and TYTYTY! Love your pics and you got me singing your song AGAIN! Can you send me an email with a pic and a few little words to go on the LillyBo Quilts blog, please?
    love jo x

  37. Gorgeous blanket with wonderful fabric. Your snow pics are great. Have a great week. Thanks for sharing. Caro #59

  38. OH MY GOODNESS you rebel, you breaker of rules you quilt punkette...

    there are Very Good Reasons for using Bias cut strips for BINDING EDGES usually to do with turning corners and easing and stretching

    How could you just get on with it and do your thang?????

    I'm sure that when you have thoroughly read the tutorial that Mrs D will bring to your attention you will see the error of your ways....and come to your senses

    ha ha haha

    seriously though???

    you just run the risk of serious shrinking and puckerage when the quilt is washed - if the kids have infection risks and the parent has to hot wash at 60 degrees or over you might want to do a test wash and check the edges don't shrink at a different rate to your quilt.

    Bias binding has flexibility and is usually preshrunk or if you cut your own binding on the bias cut or the straight grain - you should preshrink edging material and main body material in the same wash on the high temperature and check they will shrink at the same rate (yes really!) before combining fabrics... i'm sure you know this and just wanted to see who was going to be a horrible know it all....I know no one likes a smart arse but you did ask and I never learned to shut up...

    I love your quilt and it will be just as beautiful even if it does pucker up - ha ha ah

    I love you

    dxxx 54

  39. LOVE your quilt, it's beautiful and made with love which is all that matters. Love the snowy photos too, sedums always look great with their little snow caps on!

    Brenda 105

  40. Wow it looks fab! Your sewing always impresses me, I struggle to even thread a needle. I once sewed my project to my skirt, during a lesson at school. Lisa thought it was hilarious and we still laugh about it now! Fab snow pics, for once we had a lot, I even saw the snow plough go down our main road! Been stuck in since last Thursday with no chance of me going anywhere until at least Friday. Am really missing seeing people! I nearly didn't post today as am struggling, but didn't want to miss out, might suffer withdraw symptoms!! Take care Zo xx 139

  41. WHAT A wonderful quilt i love the colour so bright and cheerful .great snow pics lov your "mushrooms" it looks fab from the inside looking out !especially when its warm and cosy indoors ..bliss .. have a great week Andrea#6

  42. WOW busy as a beaver you are! I have always been told there is no rest for the wicked and I always wondered what I had done in another life?!!! I think the quilt is awesome and someone is going to be very happy with it! Thanks for sharing and I hope you have a great week! Vickie #35

  43. What a wonderful post - I love making bunting and yours is lovely. I also love the comforter. Happy WOYWW. Cx #84

  44. Hi LLJ. Love that quilt - would have spoilt it to try any sort of patchwork - it's lovely as it is and is sure to be well loved when it reaches it's new owner!!! Can't advise about the binding - we haven't got to that bit yet in my classes!!!
    You'll be pleased to know Mrs Mouse is now clothed!!
    Happy WOYWW

  45. Oh love the colors and cuteness in your little quilt. So fun and vibrant. You amaze me, always full of energy. Your photos of the snow are pretty, We've moisture just high cold winds, below zero and miserable.
    Good for staying in and trying new coffee and hot drinks. Enjoy WOYWW and have a fun creative week Sylvia #1, don't know how that happened.

  46. LOVE LOVE LOVE that bright primary you've used for the quilt, and £3 pm too! Which shop is it in Salisbury that you go to? I'm in need of a bit of fabric to use as inspiration for my almost-finished utility room. I feel a little fabricy spree coming along.....

  47. Quilt is fab. Your garden looks much like ours and supposed to be more tomorrow. Am getting fed up now. Typical of a boiler!!!! Sorry I'm so late. Anne x #145

  48. Your LillyBo quilt is adorable, and what a great cause!

    a little late
    #164 this week!

  49. OH good grief, I was enjoying the fluffy stuff until I came to the bit about the boiler having a hissy fit. Bugger! Love all the little bits cos they're pretty and they're little but the comforter is gorgeous. I've got a bunny rug (same thing) made out of patches of Indonesian sarong cotton. It's so soft to go over the knees at night and Pumpie lurves it, snuggle bug that she is.

    Thanks for leaving a comment. We're not close to the fires but we have a lot of 'fuel' here on the Peninsula. The Firies call the ti-tree petrol bush because of the oil content in the leaves which are also quite dry. We keep alert.

    Take care - hope that boiler is okay now.
    Ros. #3

  50. PS Did you see the post about the Daylesford Singers Festival. Have a quick look when you have a minute.

  51. That quilt looks fabulous. i like the edging that you picks up the lovely bright cheeriness of the topper fabric!
    Well done!

  52. I feel like our little corner of Kent must have been in a little bubble. We only had one day of snow wand it's nearly all gone now - even 20 minutes down the road is really had.

    I keep meaning to tell you. We had the nurse in the other day to do Logeys weight etc. she brought a trainee with her and as soon as she walked in she said to her "this is the lady I was telling you about with the gorgeous rockabilly bibs!" Did make ma laugh, hadn't seen her since he was a few weeks old! I had to show her and my bag too!

  53. Sorry I'm dragging my sorry as far as I'm concerned this has been a really fun visit today, LLJ! But then, they all are! If you put spectators on your lovely eyes, your slice of head looks quite like mine! Oh, dear, perhaps that's not a good thing; sounds rather like ME thinks it would be, but honest, only from the eyes up! Downward you don't want any of this, trust me!!

    Okay, I'm going to stop with the exclamation points. Just assume that they are there. I have stunted little fingers and it slows me down to move over right and shift up and over left. You should have seen me struggle with a manual typewriter back in the days when I dated Tom Edison.

    What the hell? Get ON with it. Okay, okay.

    First, from bottom up> LOVE your sweet baby quilt. That fabric is the BEST for a wee one. I know Jo will be so happy to have it. I know nothing about bias, except that one doesn't like to be. Equally enchanting are the tissue covers and the baby Thea bunting and the drawstring bag. Coming in last, thank you for sharing the snow pictures. I love them all, but that "mushroom" plant is a prize-winner!!

    I leave you with a hope and a question. Question: how did you manage to sew with mittens on? Hope: you have your boiler fixed and haven't frozen your giblets.

    Have a fab weekend! Mwah! Darnell (I forget the number by now, 131 I think)

  54. P.S. I forgot to tell you that shoulder cock educational information on my blog recently may or may not be true. Studies are continuing. So far, the scientific research has been confined to one person (blog typist), who noted that she is right-handed and NEVER cocks to the left. If you would like to be part of the scientific class for this research, please respond. There is no remoneyration for participation, but you will receive a package of 2011 accolades. Extra credit if you have a cocker spaniel.

  55. Hi LLJ,

    Thank you so much for your kind words on my knitted scarf post. Still tearing up here as I'm sure I will for quite a while. Yes, wouldn't it be wonderful to be remembered by the crafts we share?!? I have your wonderful bunting that Di brought me and also the bag that I bought from you so your craftiness is close to my heart!

    I apologize for not coming by this post sooner. The snow looks amazing and that plant does look like mushrooms! Now I'm no quilter but I rather like how you finished off the edges of the quilt, which is absolutely darling! The bunting you are making for your friend's baby looks yummy too!

    Big hugs,

  56. Doing a belated skip around the WOYWW posts!

    Hope the snow has cleared off now and that your boiler has been revived? Ours has just decided to stop making hot water. *sigh* We should have the plumber on retainer, he's been out to us so much recently!

    Loving your fabric creations - I am still in awe of anyone who can be creative with fabrics cos I totally suck at fabric crafts! :lol:

    Ali #77

  57. What a lovely quilt. You did an excellent job. April #110

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