Wednesday 30 May 2007

A Formal Introduction to the Princess and the Pea

Lucy Locket is pleased to introduce Her Royal Highness Princess Peg, seen here modelling the latest in nightwear fashion and clutching her beloved teddy. Her bed has been beautifully handcrafted by the talented "Mr Powder" and dodgily painted by Lucy Locket's darling husband. Her bed is equipped with seven sumptuous mattresses and a dainty floral quilt but sadly these do not protect her from the discomfort caused by a pesky pea.

Peg's origins lie in Australia where her ancestors owe their existence to the very talented Rosalie Quinlan. Peg herself was born in the United Kingdom and is somewhat smaller than her Australian relatives (83% on the photocopier to be precise).

She is happily living with her new friend "Daisy" but is a little affronted by the fact that her two mini Barbie princess cousins want to share her bed with her. Lucy Locket has assured Peg that she will be making sleeping bags for these annoying cousins as soon as possible.

Sunday 27 May 2007

"Daisy's" 7th Birthday

The Birthday Girl

"Dorothy" (9), "Daisy" (7 today!) and "Fred" (4)

This is Olly - made for Daisy by her lovely big sister!

She loved the presents from her little brother too!

and finally....
The Princess and the Pea

the pea is there too (honest!) - one less planted at the allotment! Seven mattresses - one for each year - with lovely top-stitching from my new machine!

An exciting day today - although the old ones are a bit tired as we were up til about 1am finishing off presents, wrapping, tidying and putting up the bunting, then we got up at 6.30 to open the presents!

Friday 25 May 2007

Meet Jenny!!!!

A quick but VERY excited post to introduce you all to Jenny!

Jenny Janome that is!

Bought from here after my very kind friend Denise lent me hers to play with.

look how clever Jenny is
and I can slow her right down so I can teach the children how to sew safely.

Sunday 20 May 2007

Clever little darlings!

I thought I would show you what my little ones have been up to and I think you will agree they have done really well!
This is the dog that "Dorothy" stitched at The Fat Quarters when it was polling day. It is from a pattern by Anni Downs of Hatched and Patched. She and I made it into a cushion when we went back to The Fat Quarters last Saturday- her first time of using the electric sewing machine (which died a few days later - no connection!!!)

When "Daisy" and "Fred" saw it when we came back they decided that they wanted to do sewing too.

"Daisy" is sewing a flower (appropriately!!)

And this is what "Fred" is doing. He has never sewn before and calls the needle a "pin", the thread "string" and the stitches "bumps"! I'm really impressed with what he has done as he is only 4 and I only helped him by re-threading the needle (quite a few times!!!) He absolutely loves sewing and annoyed his big sisters by refusing to play with them because he wanted to get on with it!

And isn't he just absolutely gorgeous (or am I biased!!!!!)

I have been learning too:
This is the quilt I have decided to make as I want to learn how to "piece" blocks rather than my usual applique. I found the pattern in Australian Homespun 8.4 and the pattern is by Blackbird Designs.

I took it along to The Fat Quarters on thursday for my sewing group and Kim showed me how to make my very first star block

so I am quite pleased with myself and very excited as I have managed to order the sampler fabric used in the original design from America and it should be here soon. I just love any fabric that has writing or alphabets on - maybe it is a legacy of all my years of research!

P.S Monday 1pm IT'S HERE!

all beautifully tied with a ribbon.
These are all the new fabrics for the quilt (so far)

This has cheered me up as I've just spent a miserable morning shopping (unsuccessfully) for new work clothes. I even came to the conclusion that I hate clothes shopping more than I hate housework!

It confirms why I like fabric shopping so much more - new fabrics never make you feel fat and awkward and there are no unflattering mirrors in patchwork shops!!!

Friday 11 May 2007

My First Quilt

This is the first proper quilt I made. It is from a design by Lynette Anderson of The Patchwork Angel and I started it when I was pregnant with my four (soon to be five) year old. I made and appliqued the top and then stuffed it in a bag for a couple of years until my friend Alison saw it and forced me to finish it! It's not very accurate but I do love it. The children like it because I have turned the characters into members of the family and they love telling visitors that Daddy is the Scarecrow! (well he's not very tidy at the best of times!!!). It is above the fireplace in the dining room which we can't paint as the plaster hasn't dried out in two years - oops! It is the only quilt I have done from a pattern - the rest are all "made up" and very simple and wonky and several are still in pieces in bags somewhere waiting for another friend to make me finish them!

I started out sewing "seriously" just before my second daughter was born. I had made my first daughter a knitted patchwork blanket, teddy, mobile and clothes and wanted to do something similar for No.2 - unfortunately with a toddler already in tow I just didn't have time to knit anything. Then I saw a pattern in a magazine for a seaside quilt. I wasn't confident enough to make a proper quilt but hit on the idea of using fleece and applique-ing pictures on to that - so this is the first (rather tatty) one I ever made.

I took it along to a craft fair at the last minute to bulk up my stall one Christmas and got an order from it and then proceeded to make dozens of different designs over the years - all personalised to suit the recipients and their families. The problem is that fleece isn't as exciting as proper patchwork fabric although I did have fun with all the different applique fabrics.

These are the children's and mine - rather scruffy, fairly grubby, but definitely well loved!

Monday 7 May 2007

Dolls Story/Allotment

(Minnie does the sewing)

After visiting Melly and Me today I was inspired to find some old photos the children and I took last year so they could write "Dolls Story" (although it was never actually written!) - all but one of the dolls are from Rosalie Quinlan patterns so I must dedicate the first part of this post to her - keep up the good work Rosie I LOVE your designs!! I always try to make the children something for their birthdays so we do have quite a few rag dolls and quilts, and cushions, and blankets, and wall-hangings, and bags etc - and each year there are more!!

This is Minnie (because she is very small and because my wonderful and much missed Granny's middle name was Minnie - she would have been 102 this weekend!)

This is No.1 daughter's "Jemima" made for her 3rd Birthday
much loved and very useful when she is poorly!

Again a doll - "Becky" - for No.1 daughter - this time for her 8th birthday but wearing clothes made from a dress she was given for her 3rd birthday!

Now these dolls are definitely MINE - and I love them!

This one is "Adam-Friend" made for my littlest one's 3rd birthday
and named after his best friend at nursery - I didn't make the doggy though!

Finally we have Lolly - made for No.2 daughter's 5th birthday
ready to go on holiday with Becky.

We have spent the weekend at the allotment and it has been windy/sunny/rainy/warm and cold all at once! I planted out some climbing beans but the wind has pretty much killed them off so that was a bit silly of me but I did manage to pick this fantastic (!) bunch of radishes with my lovely clean hands!

Thursday 3 May 2007

Inspired by Janet Bolton

Having seen Weird Bunny's pictures of her version of Janet Bolton's My Grandmother's Patchwork Quilt I thought I would post the pictures I did of the children a year or so ago. The two of the girls are directly from Janet Bolton's In a Patchwork Garden, but the little boy is my own design. They all really suit the characters of my little ones and I have used some old clothing for some of the fabrics. I love Janet Bolton's style and wish I had her talent for design. I met her a few years ago at the Country Living Spring Fair and she was really nice too!

The colours have not come out very well in the photos but photography has never been my top skill!

I've had a lovely sewing day at The Fat Quarters with my nine year old as her school was closed today for polling and I'm out for a sewing night with my friends tonight - what a great day!

Tuesday 1 May 2007

Patchwork Bargains

Here are my patchwork bargains from today! The fabric at the front is actually a tonal beige for my 365 quilt although it looks a bit green here. The magazines are great and were less than half price - in fact everything was half price or less! I'm just very sad that another shop will no longer be stocking patchwork supplies :(

I have a plan for the middle floral-y fabrics but can't say what it is yet as it will be for my middle daughter's 7th birthday - if it works!

I bought a new iron today too so I should be able to continue with my journalling on the fabric blocks - I must also make sure I keep making notes on what is happening each day as it is easy to miss a few days - then I find it hard to remember what happened and I can't really blame that on age yet!