Friday, 31 August 2012

Mystery over

Our mystery trip was not really exciting as we went to many of the places that we go on day trips.  We did however stop in a very nice hotel where the room service and food were excellent. The other people on the mystery trip were also very friendly so we actually rather enjoyed ourselves.  We went to Skipton, Matlock Bath, Bakewell where we enjoyed one of the famous bakewell puddings and ended up in the Lake District in the rain. 

Canal view of Skipton, in the rain of course.

The sun came out when we arrived in Bakewell for our bakewell pud.

Chatwell from the road.  The sun was still out and the place was teaming with people.  I've been round Chatwell before (in the rain) and its well worth a visit the grounds and gardens are lovely.

Nobody wanted a ride in the boats, except perhaps the gulls, wonder why?

We went to the National Quilt Show in Harrogate today.  There were some wonderful quilts, far too many to photgraph even if I could get close to them.   These two are by Heather Beattie, similar in style but the photos don't do justice to the quilting.

Gail Lawler was teaching and talking at the show this is one of her pieces from her Glimpses of England series which is in her new book.
Close up of part of the hanging.

I Bought Gail's books Glimpses of England and Glimpses of New Zealand, which were on special offer if you bought both.   I also bought these two books.

Alison Holt's Machine Embrodered Seascapes and June Barnes Exploring dimension in quilt art.  I've only had time to skim through each book but I know I'm really going to enjoy reading them and will get lots of hints on how to do things.

Big wedding next week, we've got a full rehersal tomorrow and the men are picking up their top hat and tails tomorrow and checking if there is any last minute alterations to be done.  I'm going to entertain my dil and my dil to be while the suits are being sorted.

Friday, 24 August 2012

Where as the time gone...

My excuse is that we've been decorating and I had to put my sewing away for a while.  It's Sy and Julies wedding in two weeks time and we needed to spruce up the house a bit.  It's tidy for once, and clean just hope it lasts until after the wedding.   We're off for a short break tomorrow.  We're going on a mystery tour for our birthday.  Keith and I share a birthday and we had absolutely no idea what to buy each other so thought we'd go away for a couple of days instead.  We couldn't agree where to go hence the 'mystery tour'.

In the meantime I've received two lovely chunky book pages, both from Sonya Anderson.

The first is 'trees' - when I first picked this up off the mat I thought of Jack and the Beanstalk, which is how I've photographed it.  But Sonya tells me its a branch.  Either way I think it works, what do you think.
Her next page is 'water' and she's depicted a scene from her coastline.

Sonya tells me its of coastal Maine, of salty marsh grasses that grow in and near the sand dunes.

I love it as its not unlike parts of our NE coastline.

Off to pack for the bank holiday weekend mystery tour, will tell you where we ended up when we get back.

Monday, 13 August 2012

July and August Journal Pages

I've finally finished my August JP for the 2012 Contemporary Quilt Challenge and because its one of a pair haven't shown you the July one before now.  But here they are.  I used recycled jelly roll pieces for the background, part of a quilt I'd started and didn't like.  The flowers are from recycled lager cans.  The colours in the photo are slightly lighter than in the flesh.

July has added background stitching and some tiny butterflies made from shrink plastic.  I've used more of the transfer dyed sateen pieces to make the prairie points.   I had to join two pieces of metal to make the long stork as they just don't make lager cans long enough!!

I've used a Sizzix die on this one to add the weed at the bottom.  The center of the flower was rolled through a crimpler in both directions as I wanted it to have a seedhead feel to it.   My leaves aren't quite sunflower shaped but then neither is the one in our garden which is what I used for a model.  Our sunflower is also only 18" high, not sure what we did but the poor thing just isn't growing.  I blame the weather.

Both JP's are hand quilted in running stitch.

And now for my August Chunky Book Page a Surface Design group challenge.  This month it was "water" I thought I'd use one of the photos I'd taken of wash from our ferry crossing the Bospherus as I loved the colours. 
However it proved illusive and in the end my piece didn't look anything like I'd planned.   In fact it looked more like Monet's 'Water Lily' painting so this is what it ended up being.

I printed the photo onto fabric and layered it with sheer fabrics and iris film.  By this time of course I couldn't actually see the photo so I stitched 'water flow' marks and finally burned back the sheers.   As I said it looked more like Monet that ferry wake so I added a few lily pads, flower and beads.  All in all though I think I prefer this version.

We're just about to start redecorating the living room and staircase so guess it could be a few days before I post again.  I hate decorating and can only do a bit before I feel the need to put my feet up.  Keith has started clearing out books and magazines so I guess I had better do my bit too.

Saturday, 11 August 2012

Swapping again

It seems ages since I swapped anything but this is the latest arrivals.

First Inchies swapped with members of the Surface Design Group:

The last three rows of inchies are purple backgrounds Pauline, yellow/green background Norma and finally the last row are from Kim for whom this is her first swap.

Next swap has been going on for around six months but I came in half way through, so here goes:

 The last theme for the book pages was Butterflies.  The pink silk one is from Deb Johnson and its beautiful I think I am going to keep this for something special.
 Deb also send me a silk flower as an extra present.  It has a buttonhole loop on the back so you can pin it to your clothing or accessories.
Finally this beautiful page from Norma Rheim.  At first I thought she had sewn cross stitches in gold thread but it is gold mesh held down with lines of machine stitching which gives it that affect.

I've now finished my August Journal Page.  I deliberately have not shown my July one becaue July and August form a set.  I'll post them tomorrow, got to go now and watch Midsommer Murders.  Glad I don't live in Midsommer.