Thursday, July 26, 2012

Blue Skies

Finally some real summer weather, blue skies and hot sunshine, in fact it was straight out onto the veranda for tea and muffins this morning. I think we may have set a record as within 10 mins of arriving everybody was sewing ...not sure what happened, we must have all been on a roll since our Sunday retreat where we all got lots done.

Muffins were Oatmeal Chocolate Chip from Muffins- fast and fantastic by Susan Reimer, a book I got from Lakeland many years ago. It was the first time that I had made these but will definitely make them again as they were delicious. 

We had the Tuesday puppy with us today, before starting on her projects, Chris took her out for a walk where she came home with a souvenir to play with.

The next door's cat wished Tuesday puppy had stuck to playing with the fir cone rather than exploring the long grass where she had been enjoying a snooze in the sunshine! Apparently the cat jumped out of the grass at Berry, scaring the life out of her then made a very hasty exit through the hedge. Much patrolling of the hedge and grass followed to ensure that the 'intruder' didn't slip back in.

 Janet completed sewing a binding on her Christmas parcels quilt, details of fabrics and pattern were in last post. It looks great - it seems far too early to be thinking about Christmas but when you are quilting things you have to start early. Some of us of course have to start a few years early to ensure that quilt gets finished by Christmas!

Amanda was sewing ends into a Tiny Turning Twenty quilt that she had done at a class with Janet a couple of years ago. It is done in Portabello Market fabrics by Moda and looked gorgeous. Sorry Amanda, I didn't get a picture of the whole quilt, maybe you could add one?

I was crocheting blanket squares together, it seemed to the best way to join sometimes differing sizes of knitted squares. The square have been knitted by lots of different people at a knitting group that I belong to.  I will add a crochet edge to it to make it a little firmer. This is destined to go to charity in the near future. Hopefully it will keep somebody warm this winter.

We enjoyed a summer lunch of salmon and asparagus quiche with assorted salads then dessert today was lemon mousse with homegrown loganberries and ginger biscuits. I did add another lemon to the mousse recipe to make it really lemony.

The ginger biscuits are a very simple recipe from my Auntie Edna .

Auntie Edna's Ginger Biscuits        sorry it's in imperial measurements it's an old recipe!

Sieve together:    

6 ozs SR flour
3ozs castor sugar
1 teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda
1 large teaspoon of ground ginger

4ozs of margarine or butter
1 dessertspoon of golden syrup

Combine together,  roll mixture into balls size of walnuts then lightly flatten with a fork on a baking tray.
Bake for 10-15 mins at 180 degrees

After lunch we headed indoors for a bit as it was getting very hot on the veranda. Amanda got busy finishing the blog entry from Sunday while Chris was cutting out squares to create a border for her Christmas tree quilt that she had put together on Sunday.

Caroline had been hand quilting round the stars on a quilt for her father and decided to try quilting it using my Hinterberg floor standing frame , she found it to be very comfortable and is thinking about putting it on her wish list.  I must say she looked like a natural sitting at it and I know it would be a lot cooler that having a quilt draped over your legs.

Janet was by now sewing the ends in on another quilt, she definitely wins the prize for most achieved today!- this time it was her  2nd Tiny Turning twenty quilt done in MacowerLondon fabrics, one for each of her children. It looked so good that Chris and I have decided that we need the fabric too. It is a fabulous souvenir of the 60th Jubilee year and the hosting of the London Olympics 2012. (We have both now ordered it and hope we are lucky as the website seems to indicate that the packs have now all sold out- hopefully after our orders!) 

Janet also brought along some granny square blocks that she has been making and wanted some opinions as to whether to sash or not. After a long discussion we decided that we liked the sashed option but the non sashed version looked just as good. 

After another cup of tea and more chat, everybody decided that it time to wend their way home to Surrey. It had been such a lovely relaxing day with everybody together, hopefully won't be long till the next one.

Later in the afternoon, the cat returned to her normal spot to survey her kingdom - she seems to think she lives here!

Hoping that everybody gets a bit of sunny weather to enjoy.
Till next time.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Sunday Retreat!!

What a special day - A whole Sunday of sewing & eating cake - how perfect!!

All five Tuesday girls together again.  The sun is shining, windows are open & we all get down to business straight away!

Banana, pineapple & apple spice muffins, low fat, of course!! - just as a starter!

"Here's one I prepared earlier!"
Janet's mini star quilt - "Homespun Stars",  using wovens. Made for a shop sample for Needle & Thread in Horsell.

Alison has been preparing all the pieces for her daughter's "Double Wedding Ring" quilt.  Really useful box inserts with all the pieces colour coded & cut into shape!


Janet adding the binding to her "Parcels" quilt in Jovial fabric.  Pattern taken from the Moda website - Flurry by Kate Spain.

The Parcels Quilt

Janet has been busy!  It is the year for UFO's.
This is a pattern from the Quilt Room in Dorking -
"Pandora's Box", made in Vintage Reserve, by
 Moda.  It is to be finished for her son's new sofa!

Caroline quilting in the ditch on her log cabin stars
made with a selection of blue & brown fabrics from multiple ranges.

Having finished the machine quilting, Caroline has decided to hand quilt her stars - a new technique!

Chris showing off her almost finished block of the month, "Twelve Days of Christmas" by Kate Spain.

Chris is also finishing some stars in the same fabrics, to add to the quilt's outer borders.
I have been busy finishing some cushion covers, using sample fabrics from Romo.

                                                Chris showing her finished quilt top!
                                                The stars in the corner are Chris's own

We all brought a picnic lunch, eaten whilst sewing.
There was a rota for tea making - more cake in the afternoon, of course, courtesy of Alison.  Spiced carrot cake with a cream cheese topping!

At last, another project well on the way to completion!  Roman blinds for my bathroom.
Fabric from C& H Fabrics in Guildford.
A portion of the completed "wedding rings" - one of thirty six in the completed quilt!
Janet's sample of a table runner for her class at Needle & Thread.  Made in various Moda Christmas fabrics.

Last but not least, Chris with her Christmas trees, made in "Twelve Days of Christmas" fabric.

All in all a very productive day, just so looking forward to the next one!!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

A Bit of a Rare Day...

as it was dry and warm and we were able to have the french doors open all day!

Caroline was the first to arrive followed by Amanda.  Alison and Chris would be with us by lunchtime.

As usual we had the first of many cups of tea, together with Brownies made from a Betty Crocker mix to which I had added chocolate chunks and toffee waffles.  Pop the waffles on top of a mug with hot tea or coffee and let the toffee so soft. Yummy.

Caroline was cross stitching a design by Derwentwater Designs from their range Dale Designs called Yew Tree Farm.

Amanda was machine quilting.  This quilt was started in 2007,  made in the Tiny Turning Twenty pattern using fabric by 3 Sisters called Portobello Market.

Chris and Alison arrived in time for lunch, which was cold chicken and salmon with prawns, eggs, new potatoes and salad, this was followed by meringues, creme frache with strawberries, raspberries and blueberries.

Alison has nearly finished hand quilting her block of the month.

Chris was continuing to sew and sort out her hexagons made in Vine Creek from Kansas Troubles.

I was sewing small sample from a jellly roll for a workshop I will be doing on Friendship Braids next year.  The fabric was Allspice Tapestry from Fig Tree.

Until next time

Friday, July 13, 2012

Cushion Update

These are the finished cushions, made for the "Born Free Foundation" to their specifications.

The lion embroidery, produced at The Grange in Bookham, was made using a computer image of a real lion - Dolo.

My friend, Brenda & myself delivering the cushions to the Grange

Guildford Quilters, of which I am a member, was asked to help by making up the cushions.  They are made to order & these were the first two.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Summer or Winter?

 Just a small gathering again today - Chris, Janet & myself.  Another wet & dark day, perfect for tea & cake and quilting - not that we ever need any excuses!!

Janet was finishing the binding on yet another quilt - a disappearing nine patch using charm squares in Cornucopia, by Fig Tree for Moda.

As Alison was unable to make it today, this is a photo of my lovely sewing machine cover, which she made me for my birthday.  As you can see Alison, it is a perfect fit - thank you!

 Chris was busy knitting a pair of fingerless gloves for a  friend.  Not sure what the wool is - will have to find out!

I was framing a beautiful picture of a lion, machine embroidered at the Grange Centre in Great Bookham, Surrey, which is a centre for adults with learning difficulties.

When finished, it will be going to the "Born Free" organisation, to sell in aid of their funds.

A similar one was made for Virginia Mckenna for her 60th birthday & they have received orders since.  The lion is a computer generated design for this purpose.

A short meeting today due to other commitments.  After the obligatory cake, a lunch of soup, French bread & chocolate desert everyone went their separate ways.  See you next Tuesday!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Jam sandwiches?

Although I'd had the date in my diary I hadn't thought through arrangements for hosting today. It wasn't until almost bedtime last night that it dawned on me that I hadn't thought about lunch ... or cake! The kitchen cupboards were bare apart from bread and jam ... jam sandwiches? And so it was that I headed to our local Cook branch where I bought all that was required. A very lazy Tuesday on my part and no recipes to share!

Life is busy at the moment and I simply don't have the time to sew so have put it on the back burner until the holidays and am enjoying seeing the beautiful work produced by my friends.

Caroline had brought a new project with a beautiful selection of Japanese taupe fabrics. As always, trying to select the fabrics and placing them in the design takes lots of thought. 

 Alison was hand quilting. The designs she has chosen to stitch complement the quilt blocks beautifully. It is also amazing to see how quickly she is completing this project, little and often = steady progress!
 Janet was finishing binding and sewing ends on her London quilt. This is one of a pair that she has 
made for her children. They were pieced over the Jubilee weekend and are both nearing completion. A wonderful memory of the Jubilee.
Amanda was also sewing a new project as a result of a recent workshop/talk on Somerset Patchwork.

I could be thinking about sewing now but think I'll watch the matches at Wimbledon instead!