Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Week 8 - Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along

'Ah! Mm. Oh, oh, it is so good to get that thing out.'

We couldn't possibly do the Left Door Knocker without also doing the Right now could we?

With another set of blocks designed by Nina Riggle (paper-pieced) and Jennifer Rowles (embroidered), this week's patterns for the Right Door Knocker are a logical progression after last week's patterns.

Both the paper-pieced and embroidery patterns are available for download now from Fandom in Stitches.

I was also given the opportunity to test this embroidery pattern in preparation for this event and love how it turned out.

Week 8: Right Door Knocker colour version (stitched by me)
Embroidery pattern by Jennifer Rowles
for the Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along

Week 8: Right Door Knocker mono version (stitched by me)
Embroidery pattern by Jennifer Rowles
for the Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along

Updating my virtual design wall here's how both of my versions of the embroidered quilts are coming along so far.

Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along
Weeks 1-8 embroidered blocks (mono version)
Various designers - stitched by me

Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along
Weeks 1-8 embroidered blocks (colour version)
Various designers - stitched by me

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Portable Projects

I remember a time when I avoided any hand stitching at all costs. I still avoid mending, darning and hand binding, but over the past year I've really gotten into embroidery.

I never realised how much I was missing out on!

One of the things I love about hand embroidery is how portable it is - I don't need a machine, just decent light and somewhere comfy to sit for a while. Taking my embroidery with me has become such a thing that it's even got its own tote and portable toolkit!

My embroidery goes lots of places these days.


"Sew Happy" - My take anywhere portable projects
bag from Spotlight - A simple tote bag that fits
a 10 inch embroidery hoop and the toolkit

with masses of room to spare
My portable projects toolkit - mini scissors, needle threader,
mini seam ripper, magnetic needle case, thread magic and
a spare compartment to throw in whatever threads I'm
currently using.


Multi-tasking: Laundry and Labyrinth stitching

Sewing by the sea
A much better view than I get
from my sewing machine!

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Pinterest Reviews: Something sweet

I've already posted more in the first 2 months of this year than I did throughout all of 2015 & 2016 and I'm loving getting back into it.

I'm still spending way to much time on Pinterest, but I am still making an effort to put that time to use and actually making some of the things I've pinned.

It was a work mates birthday recently so I took the opportunity to try out a recipe that I'd pinned a while ago that has been making me drool every time I skimmed over the picture on my boards.

The recipe is a Strawberry Chocolate cake from omgchocolatedesserts.com

It was a teensy bit fiddly with the multiple layers needing to be assembled; and taking the spring-form pan off the cake before serving was a little nerve wracking but it was so very worth it.

My version was definitely not as neat and precise as the pictures attached to the recipe, and my photography leaves a lot to be desired, but I was impressed!

To top of the visual impact this recipe has, it tasted pretty darn yummy too.


My attemptPinned image

My version of the Chocolate Strawberry cake

Chocolate Strawberry Cake from omgchocolatedesserts.com

A Pinterest success I think.

What have you been pinning recently?

K

Week 7 - Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along

'It's no good asking him, he's deaf as a post!'


Week 7 of the Quilt Along brings us another one of my favourite characters from the Labyrinth - the Left Door Knocker.

The paper-pieced pattern of the week has been designed by Nina Riggle, and the embroidered version by Jennifer Rowles. Both patterns are designed for a 6 inch finished block size and the patterns for both are available to download now over at Fandom in Stitches.

I was privileged enough to be able to test Jennifer's embroidery pattern for this week. As usual I've done two versions of the block:

The mono version is same as always - 2 strands of white embroidery floss on Orchid colour Prima Homespun quilting cotton.

Week 7: Left Door Knocker mono version (stitched by me)
Embroidery pattern by Jennifer Rowles
for the Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along

The colour version of the block was done on white quilting cotton using 2 strands of DMC S434 which is a satin thread that looks a bit like a bronze colour to me.

Week 7: Left Door Knocker colour version (stitched by me)
Embroidery pattern by Jennifer Rowles
for the Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along

Have we done your favourite Labyrinth character yet?

Until next week...

K

Friday, 10 February 2017

Happy Little Mushrooms

Its been a pretty rough few weeks at work.  I've been getting frustrated, very negative and extra cynical about things that are outside of my control. I found myself frequently referring to myself and my colleagues as "Happy Little Mushrooms". (For those that might not be familiar with the phrase, its a reference to the preferred growing conditions for many mushroom species - kept mostly in the dark and heavily fed/fertilised with manure!)

All that negativity was not good for my well-being; it was not good for the people around me and it was really not very professional (especially given my tendency to blurt out exactly what I'm thinking when I let my emotions get the better of me - that's going to get me into big trouble one day!). I really needed to find a way to turn that negativity around and get into a better head space.

Creating makes me happy so what better way to turn it around than to channel all that negative energy into something creative?

And so the "Happy Little Mushrooms" pattern came into being. These little paper pieced guys were originally based on some clip art I came across, but remind me very much of the mushrooms in Nintendo's Mario games.

I got a mini production line happening and made 6 of these paper pieced little mushrooms over the past week. I then turned them into coasters/ mug rugs by adding 3/4 inch sashing strips of background fabric all around, quilting and then machine binding them with a mitred and flanged machine binding (from a tutorial I found over at Karens Quilts, Crows and Cardinals).

It was a good opportunity to practice my FMQ and binding skills - I get tons of practice paper-piecing blocks but I still haven't finished many of my WIPs so the quilting and binding is a part of the process I'm still working on getting right every time I attempt it.

Six happy little mushrooms

My Happy Little Mushrooms  have now been shared among my immediate work colleagues (who have also been going through the same frustrations). Between us the finished works are sitting on desks, pinned up on partitions and whiteboards or being used as mug rugs. They're so bright and cheerful that just seeing them around the office makes me happy!

About the pattern

You can download the Happy Little Mushrooms Pattern here,

The pattern is designed for paper-piecing and finishes at 5 inches square (5.5 inches unfinished).

If, like me, you are planning on using the blocks on their own for mug rugs or similar I suggest adding a 1/2 to 1 inch wide sashing strip of background fabric on all four sides before quilting or the edges of the mushroom might get lost in the binding. This will obviously make your finished block larger than 5 inches (size will depend on the width of sashing you choose) so make sure you take that into account when you're planning your project.

I hope you enjoy. And don't forget to share pics or let me know how you went if you try making these happy little guys.

K

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Week 6 - Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along

There's plenty of Goblins in the Labyrinth, so it's only right that they are represented in the Quilt and Stitch Along.

This week's patterns are both by Michelle Tuller and are the second set of Goblin patterns to be included.

As usual there is a paper pieced and an embroidery pattern to choose from, with both patterns available over at fandom in stitches.

I'm continuing with the embroidery  - you can see my versions of this week's patterns below.

Week 6: Goblin 2 colour version (stitched by me)
Embroidery pattern by Michelle Tuller
for the Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along

Week 6: Goblin 2 - mono version (stitched by me)
Embroidery pattern by Michelle Tuller
for the Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along

As promised, a wrap up of my progress with the patterns to date.

My progress: Weeks 1-6 of the Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along (mono embroidery version)

And the reason for the late posting today - I was hoping to have all 6 of the colour versions finished to show off. Goblin 1 (from week 2) is still not quite finished, so here's the 5 that are.
My progress: Weeks 1, 3, 4, 5 & 6 of the Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along (colour embroidery version)

More fun patterns coming next week :)

K


Thursday, 2 February 2017

Week 5 - Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along

How time is flying.. week 5 already!

And the character for this week in the Fandom in Stitches Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along is..... Wiseman and his hat!



As usual there's a paper-pieced and an embroidery block option for you to choose from, with both patterns available over on fandominstitches.com

I really struggled with choosing just one this week - I had signed up to test Mel Moore's embroidery design... but Daphne Seymour's paper pieced design is also fabulous - make sure you check it out over on fadominstitches. Sadly I can't justify making three Labyrinth quilts at the moment (I'm still struggling to justify making the two embroidered quilts that I've committed myself to!) so it will have to wait for some time in the future.

Anyway - here's my two versions of the block for this week - a colour version on white background and a mono with white stitching on lilac background. 


Week 5: Wiseman and his hat - colour version (stitched by me)
Embroidery pattern by Mel Moore
for the Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along


Week 5: Wiseman and his hat - mono version (stitched by me)
Embroidery pattern by Mel Moore
for the Goblin King: Labyrinth Quilt and Stitch Along
I hope you're continuing to enjoy this event as much as I am. Next week will be week 6, about a third of the way through the event, so II'll try to put together a bit of a recap in addition to showcasing the patterns for the week.

Until then....

K