Saturday, 27 October 2007

A Rag Doll in a Barbie World

When my children were younger I made a lot of stuffed dolls and animals. They always had something in that line every Christmas and birthday, plus tiny home-made things in their Christmas stockings. Now they're grown up, they aren't really interested in dolls or stuffed animals any more, but I still like to make them. These two are made from a 1997 pattern by Jennie 'n' Co which I found on ebay.
They're less primitive than is popular now, but I really enjoyed making them. Making dolls, you can just potter along at your own pace from one stage to the next, and before you know it they're taking shape before your eyes. They take up small amounts of fabric and you can vary them in so many ways. When the hair and face are done, they suddenly have character.
On this pattern the arm and leg seams are deliberately left on the outside, in case you were wondering! If I was making these dolls again I might make her dress an inch longer.
Now I just have to find somewhere to put them. Maybe I need more shelf space.

Darlene of Quilting Daze asked me to show a picture of this yo-yo mat, so here it is. It could partly be seen in the photo in my post of 29th September.
I made this when I wanted a small-scale mat for my mantelpiece, to put a vase on. It's about 7 inches square. The idea was to have faded-looking colours in the centre, with stronger colour around the edge. Sweet and simple, and useful too.

We're going away next week for a few days' holiday, so I'll catch up with any emails when I get back:)

Tuesday, 23 October 2007

Garden Path

It's a lovely bright autumn day here today, and I wanted to share with you one of my favourite views of our garden.
This is looking down the side of the garden from one corner of the house. The leaves are changing colour and starting to fall now. The gravel path continues all the way round.
Don't be fooled by how quiet it looks in this photo - we live on a busy main road and the trees help screen the garden from the road. You would never guess from this angle.

Wendy tagged me for the 4 Things About Meme.

4 jobs I've had
Strawberry picker (aged 17, in school holidays)
Bank clerk
Bank cashier
Wife and mother

4 films I could watch over and over
I'm not a big watcher of films, but I thought of 4 old films:
All That Heaven Allows
The Lawless Breed
The Enchanted Cottage

4 TV shows I watch
Location, Location, Location
The Simpsons
Life on Mars (not on now but I had trouble thinking of 4)
Come Dine With Me (not currently on either)

4 favourite foods
Fish and chips

4 favourite colours
Moss green
Pale yellow

4 places I would like to be right now
At a big quilt show
Newborough, Anglesey
Anywhere free from stress, guilt and anxiety
In my sewing room

4 names I love but would/could not use on my children
Boys' names, because I had girls:

4 people I'd love to tag
Lucy Locket

Saturday, 20 October 2007

Fun Mail

I've read often of gifts being sent between bloggers, but imagine my surprise when this week I was the recipient!
My friend Wendy sent me a wonderful parcel of goodies, all the way from Canada. There is a beautiful embellished card, some wool fabric, a reel of variegated thread in colours she knew I'd like, and a cute strawberry pattern, because she remembered I like strawberries! And best of all, one of her lovely pumpkin ornaments with wool applique. I can't tell you how beautifully this is made. I particularly love the way she did the leaves.
It's such a rare thing for me to receive a handmade gift, and it's just what I need because up to now my house has been sadly lacking in autumn decor.

Thank you Wendy, for such a thoughtful and sweet gift!

Sunday, 14 October 2007

Brown and Pink

I was determined to make some progress on this quilt last week, and two days of intensive quilting left me with just the binding to do.
I always seem to have trouble deciding on fabric for binding. It takes me ages to narrow down the choices and finally pick one. I think sometimes the binding helps define the quilt, but on the other hand you don't always want it to be a strong feature. To take one of the fabrics from the piecing, or have some contrast? So many possibilities! I think maybe I have a tendency to "overthink" these things! In the end I decided on a pinky red shade.
Then having done the binding, I had to wait a couple of days to photograph it, because the dull and miserable weather here meant the light wasn't good enough to take photos, but here it eventually is. Try not to look at the ladder in the background!

This photo is darker than I would have liked.
I'm quite pleased with the way the balance of colour worked out on this quilt, because I didn't want the pink to dominate too much. I'm not the pink/fluffy/sparkly type, but I like old-fashioned coral and rose pinks, in limited quantities or in combination with other colours.
For the backing, a one-yard piece was JUST wide enough. I used a stencil for the quilting pattern, which is an allover meander with hearts.

Have a great week:)

Saturday, 6 October 2007

Autumn Garden

My pink and brown blocks are put together and ready to be quilted.
Meanwhile here are some more garden photos.
Even in October, these nasturtiums are still going strong. I planted seeds one year and now they come up on their own year after year. I know I posted a pic of them before, but the colours are so vibrant.

There are a few mature trees around our garden, and 3 of them are horse chestnuts, so we get lots of conkers falling on the lawn and path.

This is a tiny oak tree I found growing. There are no other oak trees I know of nearby, so I think maybe a squirrel must have brought an acorn in and buried it, and it grew.

I was tagged for this award by San of Gypsy Quilter. Thanks, San - you certainly make me smile:) So now I can think of some adjectives that describe me, beginning with the letters of my name. Of course my mind went completely blank, and my family were no help, only coming up with words like "crazy" and "obsessive". As if! Well, I rejected those silly suggestions and after a bit of thought I managed to come up with some better ones. I am:
C - creative
A - artistic
R - a realist
O - optimistic (can you be realistic and optimistic at the same time?)
L - like my dad
I - industrious, individual
N - neat and tidy, well most of the time
E - energetic
So many of your blogs make me smile. In fact I only read blogs that make me smile! So if you're reading this and would like to play along, consider yourself tagged!