Sunday, 31 August 2008

I’m shattered! I’ve spent all of Friday afternoon and all of Saturday cooking and baking. It was my lovely brother’s birthday, and a few weeks ago, I recklessly, on the impulse of the moment, offered to entertain the family in celebration of aforesaid event. Normally my, far more talented than me sister-in-law, does the cooking for birthday teas, but as they were only arriving back from Italy (lucky people) the day before, I knew she would have little time to organise it - and he is my big bro after all! As I can only seat 6 at my dining table, and there were more than 6 invitees, I opted for a buffet, which I preferred as it meant it was all more or less prepared beforehand – I simply don’t cope well with cooking a roast for more than 2 people at a time! Trying to get everything hot at the same time is yet to be mastered and if I’ve not done it by now at the age of 48, I probably never shall! Anyway, the cake turned out rather well (even though I say so myself) – very chocolatey and delicious as you can see above .......... you may think “what is a 6-year old doing drinking ‘Budweiser’”, but my brother is actually 51, but I didn’t believe the cake would stand up to 51 candles. Despite my worries about the fare I provided, everyone paid compliments, but then again they would wouldn’t they. It was fine actually, and I have to say that my cheese, onion and bacon quiche was a knock out. Of course, I have loads of left-over’s now – whatever shall I do with the other half of the chocolate cake ......... um, let me think about that for half a second!!!!!!
Anyway, having spent a day away from my beloved sewing, you can guess what Sunday will be dedicated to can’t you?!!

Thursday, 28 August 2008

Is it safe to turn the TV on again!!?

Is it safe to turn the TV on again …….. have the Olympics finally finished??!!! Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I’m unpatriotic – far from it – it’s really good to see that the UK have done so well this time, but does it really have to have 24/7 coverage by the BBC? Yes you’ve guessed it; I’m not a big sports fan. Sport is good yes, (and healthy) of course, and I could certainly do with taking more exercise (a lot more!!!), it’s just that the media seem to go a bit over the top (to me anyway) – I expect most men (and some ladies) would disagree with me. I don’t think I'm on my own either in saying that there are too many different sports these days in the Olympics – I expect the UK will be hosting the first tiddley winks or marbles event in 2012!!! Hey, I could enter; I used to be good at those when I was a young un!! LOL. Still, it’s allowed me to watch some of my favourite DVD’s whilst sitting sewing, so that can’t be a bad thing really. Actually, I do love tennis, so I’d be quite happy with 24/7 coverage of that (each to their own eh) – in fact, you should have seen me driving home to the Midlands from North Wales on the day of the men’s singles final this year! OK, so I may have exceeded the speed limit a tad once or twice!!!, but I only missed about the first 15 minutes, as there had been a delay due to rain (again!) and I then sat glued to the TV, only getting out of my chair for food and drink (my big downfall), totally gripped until turned 9:00pm to one of the best finals in years– what a brilliant match!

Anyway, as I prefer to talk about sewing and crafts etc. I thought I’d show you my serviette holder that I made about a week ago …….. I’m quite pleased with it and it’s reasonably easy to make too: just 2 contrasting fat quaters and some reasonably sturdy cardboard cut to right size, one for the base and four for the sides. As an alternative to a serviette holder, it could also be used to serve bread rolls in, although I would lay out a serviette first in the bottom of it in order to avoid marking the fabric. I’m going to make some more, as I think they would make a nice homemade Christmas present and not too expensive either. Does anyone else agree?

Monday, 25 August 2008

Bag finished!!!

................ and here it is - I'm quite pleased with it - I just hope the recipient will be too, but I shall have to wait until her birthday in October to find out. I've worked on it most of the day and it's taken me longer than I thought it would, but then things always do seem to don't they? I was taking extra care I suppose to neaten all edges etc. as it's to be a gift, whereas if it was for myself, no doubt I wouldn't have been quite as fussy! Even the inside looks good as you can see. I've had this fabric for ages and had been wondering where I could use it and I think this is just right! ...... and still more ..... I've also added a couple of pockets on the inside. You may not be able to tell very well from these pictures, but there are pockets on the outside - at the sides, which look great, but it's always useful to have pockets inside a bag. I think I may add a 'handmade' label at the inside top to cover where I've attached the back of the flap - that's the only bit that looks a bit rough. Anyway, I believe I have made very good use of my Bank Holiday - more of them please I say - like one a month perhaps??!!!!! :0)

Oh, Mr Darcy!!

I know, I should be tucked up in bed by now, but I've just finished watching 'Pride and Prejudice' (oh Mr. Darcy!) whilst working on my current project, which is a bag that I've made before. And now (following gigantic hints!!), I'm making one for my nephew's girlfriend for her 21st Birthday. In Jane Austen's day, of course, we could have sat all day sewing and chatting couldn't we - just imagine that girls. This is how it looked this morning with the bits cut and laid out. I'm about half way through at the moment, and, as it's Bank Holiday Monday here tomorrow (er, today now actually!!!), hopefully I'll be able to finish it ...... watch this space.

As predicted by several of you, I am becoming rather addicted to blogland (I'm amazed I've achieved any sewing at all today to be honest) - I start off by looking at one blog and end up visiting a dozen others from the links on each page - often I forget where I started in the first place: LOL :0) I've come across several 'swaps', which I think are such a lovely idea, but a bit disappointed to find that I've just missed out on joining them - they're clearly very poular and I would love to join one. Does anybody know of any others going that I could join?

Anyway, I can barely keep my eyes open now, so I'm off to bed ..... yawn!!!

Sunday, 17 August 2008

My first blog post!

Well, this is my very first blog post!

Purely by chance a few weeks ago, I picked up a recent copy of ‘Magic Patch’ magazine (never come across it before!) It is dedicated to Veronique and her lovely Labrador, Jules, and is filled to the brim with the type of country crafts that are right up my street. I instantly started work on my own version of the ‘house’ sewing machine cover – see photograph above. It’s not identical, but it is similar and although it’s not quite up to Veronique’s standard, I’m quite pleased with it. Anyway, as a result of drooling over the magazine and then doing a general ‘Google’ search for Veronique’s website, I happened upon Jo’s ‘Home Sweet Home’ blog. How lovely to discover a whole blog community dedicated to patchwork, quilting and lots of my kind of crafts. Prior to this, although I had heard of a blog, I had no idea what one really was, and now I have my own!! The trouble now is that I’m spending even more time at my computer instead of at my sewing machine!!

I am in the middle of making my first quilt, which I started about a year ago and having attended a patchwork workshop to get me started on it, I was promptly told that I had chosen rather a complicated pattern for my first quilt (typical of me!! LOL) – the central panel of the quilt cover is a diamond pattern and it has been quite difficult to match the corners up – there are definitely some areas where I try not to look to closely!!

Now don’t ask me why, but what I really love making is rag dolls. I’ve made several and my favourite part is after I’ve made the doll body and I can get on to making the clothes. My least favourite part though is attaching the doll’s hair – if anyone out there has a secret they would be willing to share with regards to doll’s hair, I would be soooooooo grateful!! Above is a picture of my latest doll – her name is Millie.

I would love to hear from anyone out there – it’s really exciting to be able to connect with other like-minded ladies.