Monday 31 October 2011

candy girl

Happy Halloween!
Candy corn from across the pond!!
I have had the wonderful fortune of finding a kindred spirit
this summer who goes under the guise of Molly Flanders.
And look what she has sent me all the way from the USA,
thanks Mary you're sew sweet!
If you are into patchwork I'm sure you have already delighted in her wonderful
piecing and hand quilting, but if you haven't do pop over,
you won't be sorry.

These candies are like tiny pieces of fudge,
though my husband thought they looked like a bag of pulled teeth!!

And that's where I'll end this.
Have a ghoulish day!

Friday 28 October 2011

Bloggers' Quilt Festival Fall 2011

 I'm entering Amy's
If like me you have never heard of it go take a look
there are some amazing quilts to swoon over.
I'm sharing my hand sewn English paper pieced summer of love quilt
that I finished this June.
I suppose you would call it a scrap quilt,
as no two stars are the same
and the majority of the fabric came from my stash.
Some are from friends and some are from France
and one is from my childhood!
 My inspiration was a vintage hexagon patchwork cushion.
So the fabrics are a mix of vintage and new,
with an addition of solids to break up the busyness.
 I backed it with an old duvet,
as I'm all about using what you have.
When I found the scrap for the binding
I couldn't believe how well it matched the scheme.
 As I'm not the worlds greatest quilter I did simple machine diagonals,
also I didn't want to add to the fussiness,
though I'm probably regretting that decision now!
 It took me at least 6 months to complete,
though I really motored on during winter/spring
 I learnt about fussy cutting through this quilt,
it's a real joy to see how the patterns form.
 Well for those of you have seen it all before
hope you enjoyed the re-run!
And to those that are new to me
I hope it has brightened your day!

Pop on over to Amy's blog for details on how to enter,
or just to revel in the glory!

Thursday 27 October 2011

the 400th tale

 The elves and the quiltmaker.

Once upon a time in the valley of Bun Mountain there lived a girl called SummerFete who was seamstress to the queen. She lived on the beautiful tree lined street Linden Grove but often dreamt of  life on the coast where the
silver pebbles shimmer and the sea is forever peacock blue.
The everyday life of our friend is filled with little cottage comforts
and her house filled with needles pins and baking tins. When she is not indoors she likes nothing more than to take her sketchbook into the garden and do a bit of potter-jottering, you see she likes to sew and sow for she has quite a love for gardening there are only a few ungardened moments.
Summer likes to live a colourful life and loves roses most of all and this is why she calls her garden my rose valley.
Every morning she takes a stroll with her two cats jumble and jelly, past the newly planted tree with the heart shaped leaves,
and down to the hen house where she is greeted by her beloved chickens Andamento, Monda loves, Gilly flower, Dosie rosie and not forgetting her favourite Bobo bun.
It is here she can be found sipping tea and enjoying her favourite treat a millefeuilles (vanilla slice) and lusting over lifestyles in the glossy magazines she loves so much, Sals snippets is her first read, followed by Green rabbit designs, Lilys quilts and the wondrous Fabric of my life.
You see our Summer is a dreamer and likes nothing more than escaping into worlds that are not her own, as you can imagine she is quite the bookworm, to spice up her sugary life her favourite read is the intrepid tale of Moll Flanders where she gets so caught up with the intrigue that she often gets behind in her work...
One fine day Summer is commissioned by the Queen of bun mountain to create one hundred patchwork quilts in one hundred days! Now all you crafty people will know that this is no mean feat and our Summer is easily distracted. But her dream of living by the sea urges her on to fulfill the order.
Being a thrifty mrs, fabrics are gathered hither and thither,
vintage materials are found at Suzy's vintage attic and at the Vintage and handmade fair, which in France might be called troc, broc and recup
(now that's another story!)
Summer works day and night until her fingers ache! Her sew wonderful life has turned into a nightmare where mountains of fabric fill every inch of her sweet house, she is quite literally spending her life under quilts.
After ninety nine days stitched in colour Summer comes to realise that she cannot possibly finish the queens order in time, so with a heavy heart she put down her needle and thread and drifts off into a deep sleep, so deep in fact, she dreams she is visited by the Felt fairy who creates a Busy bee studio. With the help of her elves Rainbow hare quilts, Serenata, the Blue patch quilter and Izzy quilts, the works in progress are soon basted, quilted and bound,
each one made with love..

On the one hundredth day Summer awakes to find one hundred beautiful quilts tied with ribbons, all ready for delivery to the queen, so her patchwork n play dream came true and so to did her dream of living by the sea...
Summer often wonders just how the quilts were selfsewn?
And ponders if this is the end of my life in stitches? What do you think?

Of course not, because Summer love love loves creating and with the help of her friends she will always sew on and sew on....

This is a fictitious selfsewn tale.
The animals may be imaginary but the people are real!

On this my 400th post I would like to thank everyone who has ever commented, I'm sorry I've not mentioned you all (I'm not super woman!)  but thank you because without you I might not be typing right now.

Clare xx

ps.apologies for the overly twee tale, you try making a story out of your commenter's!

edited: very loosely inspired by the elves and the shoemaker!

Friday 21 October 2011

toffee air friday

I couldn't really move on with life under the duvet.
There's far too much going on in the world, to wallow.
So I've planted a tree as a fresh start.
I spent days looking for the right one to plant in the new bed.
I have chosen a cercidiphyllum japonicum
also known as a katsura or toffee apple tree.
It is potentially going to be a large tree, 
so I will keep it in check by pruning.
I shall be very excited come spring to see the fresh new leaves.
You may be asking why toffee apple tree?
All the books say that in autumn the leaves
give off a delicate aroma of burnt sugar
reminiscent of toffee apples!
And it's true!

The late Geoff Hamilton said it was his favourite tree 
and he wouldn't be without it.
I can totally see and smell why..
..and now I want a toffee apple!

Wednesday 19 October 2011


 Hey you guys really moved me yesterday.
Thanks xx
I know it's not fun to read about sad stuff,
I just needed to get it out there and clear my head.

Now back to the good stuff!
Remember the flowering snowball?
This progress snap is just for you.

Tuesday 18 October 2011

just the two of us

Sometimes looking on the bright side of life is hard...
..but I believe whatever makes you happy should be encouraged
and things that make you sad..
well, they should end.
Over the past horrid nine years I've lost myself,
and with each loss, the hope....

So we are moving on.
I know it's the start of a new chapter in our lives.
I just need a moment under the duvet.

Clare xx

Thursday 13 October 2011

build it...

 ...and they will come.
 To me a garden is all about the wild life.
I've been trying to attract robins since we moved here,
and there are a few about.
I've noticed how they like to flit in and out
perching on pot plants and anything off the ground.
So yesterday I made this makeshift bird bath.
And today it was found.

The robin has also visited,
though as usual the sparrows are the majority!
At least our cohabiting friends are a little fresher now.

I think we need a bigger bath!

 It's the little things in life which make me smile.
What can you do today that will make you smile?