Crafting, fun and friendship

Crafting, fun and friendship

Wednesday, 29 October 2014


                                                                   (Dixie Chicks)

A long post today...desk first, then you can duck out sideways if you'd like!

Bag making time again!  I'm using the Botanicals fabric together with this pale green cotton.

It's at this point that you begin to wonder if you've done everything ok so far, or whether it's all backwards!  And yes, I have finished a bag before now, only to discover the zip was upside down.....

But not, I'm happy to report, this time! Phew :-)

The zip is the right way up....yay, happy dance!!

This was the only thing I sewed this week as we were away at the weekend, taking our younger son to a University Open Lampeter, West Wales.  We bumped into a familiar face en route....
We met up with Hettie for lunch in Abergavenny - it was good to catch up for a brief natter and hear all about her recent trip to the US!

When we got to Lampeter, we had a stroll around the town - it's very quaint, quite small but we stumbled across a Quilt Museum! Oh dear, what a shame..... I left my menfolk to potter and in I went, not expecting much to be honest...

Wow, was I wrong!!  It was the most amazing double height space featuring one woman's collection of Victorian quilts. These were made by men who worked in the woollen mills nearby, of which there were many making Welsh flannel and blankets. These were all from off cuts, very much the 'make do and mend' mentality.

This was the back of one of them, which I found just as interesting as the front!  It showed what fabric the off cut had come from and was neatly labelled up.
This end of the space featured quilts made by people in the home, from old clothes and sheets etc - the exception was that bright red patterned one which was made by a soldier after the Boer war...the stitching on that was fantastic! All hand done......

There were quilts everywhere!  The patterns were amazing....
I love this one, though it did make my eyes go funny!!  I love the figure in the main fabric.
A simpler pattern, but no less effective.... as were these....

I took a whole load of photos but we'd be here all day if I put them all up!

There were modern examples of quilting too - this owl made me smile.
There were two smaller rooms exhibiting fabric and textile artworks - the table in the middle was piled high with quilting and fabric books to peruse....I've got to go back cos I just didn't have enough time in there!

They were marvellous but this was my favourite....something to aim for, eh? Better get some practise with that free machining foot I bought recently!!

So, sorry for the long post today. but if you're ever in the area, I highly recommend a visit...especially as there was a very fine fabric shop, Calico Kate's, right next door!

Have a great week :-)


  1. Oh wow! No ducking out sideways here! What a wonderful collection. A very lucky find. Not jealous, not jealous...!! Mmm.....I wonder if my boy would like a tour of Lampeter?! PS I like looking at the back too and admiring the seams. Have a great week xx

    Fiona #20

  2. No ducking out here either, even for a non-sewing person like me! What gorgeous quilts, how lovely the back is of that one! What a lucky find you had with this exhibition. Lovely pic of you and Hettie too. Helen 2

  3. Oh MAN! Those quilts are fab. Reminds me of an exhibit a fair few years back at the V&A. I would never duck out on your posts LOL! but thanks for the offer. The whole new word verification thing on blogger is dong my head in - but having read it all I am darn well going to make a comment, damn it! :)

    Happy WOYWW!
    Mary Anne (1)

  4. A great bag, Jan - glad all was in the right place! I have, in my time, sewn right round so there was no hole through which to turn the bag... going daft in my old age, I think!
    That quilt museum looks amazing. Quite understand why you went a-wandering on your own - so much to look at and take in. Fantastic day out.
    Take care. God bless.
    Margaret #16

  5. Ok, Jan - me again - What word verification thingy? Just typed my comment and it was posted? Have I missed something vital?
    Margaret #16

  6. Wow oh apology needed. I was lost in the yumminess of your post today. Stunning quilts Jan and how lovely to 'bump into' Sam. We have such a lot to thank blogger for don't we?
    Annie x # 26

  7. I felt there should have been one more paragraph..... What you bought in the fabric shop next door!!!!!!! Fabulous quilts, and so nicely displayed
    Jackie 15

  8. Just coming back to check that yours was def. one with verification on it. Let me see....
    humm maybe not. If that is right sorry for worrying you and THANK YOU :)

    Spoke too soon... def. word verification coming up. It must be active for any non-blogger commenter?


  9. Although I can't sew, I just LOVE fabric! Perhaps even more than paper, or at least as much! What a fantastic place to visit, a real Eldorado! Your bag looks fab! zsuzsa @ InkyDinkyDoodle #32

  10. Such a pretty bag you those colors! Also all those lovely quilts, just makes a girl's mouth water!
    Glenda #33

  11. Morning Jan, another smashing bag, so clever, you seem to do them so effortlessly.
    Have just Googled Lampeter, after all it is in Wales, and decided that it is not really a day out journey, bother! Your pics are so tempting, I can see you would have been in your element.
    Thank you for surveying my desk and your lovely comments.
    Bless you
    Chris # 22

  12. Those are gorgeous quilts!!!! I'd never have the patience for something like that, but I'd love to just sit and admire them! Your bag is stunning!!! Love, love, love the colors and style! Great job!

    Happy Crafting!
    Jeannie #27

  13. What an amazing place! Thank you so much for sharing with us!
    Bishopsmate #42

  14. Wow! isn't it wonderful when you come across an unexpected brilliant place like that? What an inspiration. Love that quote at the beginning too. Happy WOYWW Annie C #50

  15. Your bags do amaze me! So nice you could catch up w/Hettie! And that Quilt Museum looks amazing! The display is so light and airy! While I am inept with anything thread/needle, I do so love looking at them. Have a great week.

  16. Hi Jan, what a small world! We had a couple of weeks holiday just outside Lampeter, about 10 years ago now, with Ant, Beck and Mort, who was only about a year old at the time. In a couple of caravans on what used to be a farm field. Was ace, big lake in front of the vans, watched a Heron wading about for hours, lol. Nice shot of you and Hettie there. Those quilts are stunning- bet you have your fingers crossed that Rhys goes for this one, lol. Love and hugs, Shaz xxx

  17. What a visual treat there jan - so much quilting gorgeousness. Another triumph of a bag too. The FB link on my blog should take you to Ben's outfit. I just didn't have the pic to post in my blog. x Jo

  18. Love the bag, I think the spotty fabric is as nice as the patterned one.
    The quilt museum looks very inspiring, what a great place.
    Have a great crafty week, Angela x 34

  19. Well your quilt museum visit made my day! I would have been there for hours! I love your photos so much, I pinned this to one of my Pinterest boards. I don't know what fascinates me more, the amazing vintage patterns and what they achieved with repurposed fabrics, or the fact that men made a lot of them. I know we have plenty of male quilters today, but still, I thought women did all the quilting back then! Fascinating. And that makes me so happy that the embroidery transfer vintage prints are still big in the UK. They do sell reprints of some of them in our craft stores, especially the Aunt Martha brand. But there's a controversy about which ones are in the public domain. Vogart went out of business many years ago, but Plaid Enterprises (who sells many brands under their name including Martha Stewart crafts) bought the Vogart brand. But nobody seems to know if they just own the brand, or also the copyright to the designs. Copyright is automatic now, but back then you had to file for copyright, and some of those embroidery pattern makers didn't bother doing that. Plaid is doing nothing to reissue the designs--interesting. So you can imagine when I found these I was so happy! Mom had many boxes of fabric, sewing supplies, patterns, threads, and I'm just now getting to this box! The transfers were all just thrown in there at some point and buried in a closet. There were loose patterns on top, so I had thought it was just another box of regular sewing patterns. I can't wait to sew the one with the bees! I'm taking Friday (Halloween) off - so maybe I'll get to it. It's a little chilly here this morning, but there's supposed to be a hard freeze by Saturday, so I'm going to pick every single tomato that's left and let them finish ripening on my greenhouse sunporch. I love that you still have peas growing in your garden--my mom made the best pea salad. Oh and I wanted to tell you I LOVE your hair color--gorgeous. Hugs to you beautiful soul sister. Sandy Leigh #45

  20. Fab bag and the quilt museum looks like my kind of heaven - thanks for taking and sharing so many photographs of it.

    KraftyKaren #58

  21. Hi Jan, it was, of course, lovely to see your desk, and that fabulous bag, but it was even nicer to see that gorgeous photo of you and Sam together (by the way, gorgeous hair colour!). And what a wonderful quilt display in the museum ... stunning work! You would need at least two days there. Fascinating to learn that men did such beautiful work in days gone by ... especially as a male quilter is a rarity today. Rather like knitting in Scotland. Men, particularly from the fishing communities, were great knitters at one time, now they rarely do - such a shame. I have one of those free machining feet too, and I have plans to have a go one day but it's kind of scary just taking off without the aid of the safety net of the feed dogs! Thanks for leaving a comment earlier. I was restrained at the SECC but only because I have so much stash already which I really do need to use up ... I need the room :) Have a good week. Hugs, Elizabeth x #53

  22. Hi Jan, I'm not taking part this week (still up to my neck in building work and decorating) but wanted to see what you were up to, and I'm so glad I popped by - apart from the beautiful bag in my most favourite fabric of all time, I just LOVE those quilts! How fascinating, and what an amazing place to find, it would have been so easy to walk past and not really notice it. It does make me want to try my hand at quilting. Hope you have a great week,
    Diana x

  23. Wonderful photos, I'm surprised you were allowed to photo these awesome quilts..I love the Owl too! Glad you had a good trip and enjoyed lots of fun things. So nice to get away and enjoy. Pretty owl bag too. Enjoy a great week, trick or treating beware !

  24. Gorgeous bag, love that fabric. Happy woyww.

  25. Hello Jan fab bag! Lovely photo of you both. Quilts look fascinating- glad you had a great time. Thanks for visiting. Anne x #18

  26. Hi Jan - loving your bag !
    the quilt place looks amazing - I started crafting with quilting & although I don't do much now can still appreciate the skill ! Let me know if you want someone to go back there with when you are down this way ? Hugs Ali #21

  27. OMG what a fabulous find in a little tiny village ... the quilts are amazing and I love the fact that there is a fabric shop next door... of course there is ..... have I already commented? or is it a case of deja vu
    janet #17

  28. Love, love, love this post! Thank you for sharing all the photos, not only a desk, but a quilt show, too!

    #56 this week with
    a new old stamp set

  29. Catching up with friends, finding a brilliant quilting expo and quilts made by men I don't mean to be surprised but 'what the' I know men do art we have them on the desks but quilts I have never met a man who makes quilts. Oh and that bag, I so love your bags and this fabric in particular is really devine. I will have to come and visit one day and have a cuppa.

    Sorry just getting to visit till now, DD stole my computer and I didn't want to reply on the iPad as it takes forever.

    Hugs Eliza & Yoda #9
    Thanks for visiting and happy WOYWW

  30. That botanic fabric is just gorgeous. I love the bag so much and I had a giggle at the zipper problem. Those quilts are amazing, especially as they are all hand done. I can see you whipping up an art quilt with that free foot thingy. That museum really looks interesting.
    Have a great week and thanks for liking my fb page.
    Luv Von #11

  31. Ah Lunch Lady Jan what superb photo shots as usual and sooo love the quilt delights!!

    thanks so much for sharing, happy WOYWW Shaz in oz.x #25

  32. Wow Jan - they are amazing, what a source of inspiration! And so lovely to meet up with Hettie - sounds like a great day out, except for saying goodbye to your son, of course! Lampeter sounds a lovely place - maybe I'll bump into you in the museum, if I ever get a chance to visit! Have a great week - the bag looks lovely, too, BTW - hugs, Chris # 24

  33. Late! Fab post girly, and wowser, what a great find!

  34. Hi Jan
    Late this week as have been away. I have family in Lampeter and have often wandered in to see the quilts! Even tho I can't sew I love the colous and patterns on them. My dear Aunty used to work as a translator at the Uni too!
    Have a lovely week
    Lynda B x

  35. No need to go to a Knit and Stitch Show when you can go in a place like this. Wow, this is certainly Quilters Paradise. Bet you were stopped in your tracks. What a find and such a variety of quilts. Must say I love the red one (Boer War) and the last sample you showed us the best of all but they each have a wonderful feel to them as you see them. Must have been fantastic to see them displayed like that.
    Thanks for your kind words Jan.
    Hugs, & Thanks for the visit earlier - Neet 29 xx

  36. What fabulous photos of your trip to Lampeter, all bar one! Tee Hee! Your bag is lovely.
    I must try and arrange a trip to Lampeter soon. So close yet not been. Just as soon as I can drive that far after my mishap yesterday!
    Hugs and thanks again for the lunch visit.

  37. First of all, brilliant tote, LLJ! I love the photo where it looks like your sewing machine is inside the tote! That's a fantastic photo of you and Sam! And thank you for sharing so much of the amazing museum!! I'm sending a link to my friend Donna who is a quilter. She'll be over the moon! Happy Belated WOYWW! Enjoy the rest of the week!! Hugs, Darnell #66

  38. Great photo of you & Sam,my ears were burning!! And that bag, the botanical fabric is amazing! Sound like your men were lucky you ever made it out of that quilt museum ;-)
    Not playing this week, just visiting a few friends when I can, life git in the way of crafting last couple weeks!!