Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Teacher Whitework Gifts!

It was the last day of school for my little one yesterday ... his first year of school already over and done with. Where did that year go?

On Monday he came home with a huge bag of work, lots of pictures and letter tracings. He has come such a long way in a year. To say thank you to his teacher and classroom assistant I made them a whitework cushion. I used bleached muslin and quilted 2 different patterns at 16" square. One of the patterns was called Garden Gala (I think) but I dont know who by and the other is a Marilyn Badger pattern but I dont remember the name except its something WEDGE (because thats the shape of it). I've looked for both of them on the internet but cant find either to give you the link unfortuantely. I know I brought the Marilyn Badger design from Joanne Hoffmans site some while back but I couldn't find it today. So I am very sorry about that.

The Marilyn badger pattern was duplicated and flipped/rotated 4 times to form a full circle and I added circle echo quilting to make the square and I filled the space behind The Garden Gala design with a simple freehand meander. Then for some reason I decided to wash them before making them into the cushions. Unfortunately the designs dont show quite as well as they did pre-washing and the pieces shrunk considerably making the finished cushion come out at 13" square. Obviously there was a seam allowance in the making up but I was hoping the finished pillows would finish at least 15". Its always a good idea to make cushions a full 1" smaller than the pillow form to make them nice and plump and I was expecting to use the 2 16" forms I had on hand. But they were too big so I had to make a mad dash to my local shop to get to 14" forms ... the upshot of this being there was a sale on ... and I came out with a whole bag of extra bits too! Anyway they were delivered yesterday and I just hope they are liked. In the panic I forgot about cards so I recycled some of my little ones artwork but not before taking some photos of it all. I am so pleased I did this. I have always wanted to record my kids achievements like this but I've never managed to do it before. Now I wont feel guilty when those artful beginnings are consigned elsewhere in a few years time!

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Seeing Red?

School breaks for 6 weeks of summer holidays this coming Tuesday for my youngest and Wednesday for my next in line. DD finished a few weeks back after exams but No 1 son (who has been on permanent holiday for way too long now) its the reverse as he starts work! Today he travels to HMS Raleigh to begin his basic Navy training and I am not sure if I am happy or sad. On the one hand I get to have reduced food bills, washing and ironing and, more importantly, a spare room (or maybe even a sewing room ... shush!) but on the other hand I shall miss having him around, even if he does occasionally make me see red! But then he is no different to any other child I expect. Anyway today IS a red letter day thats for sure, and we shall all troop up to the rail station to see him off, no doubt looking a little like the von Trapp family as we all say 'adieu'!

With Operation Prom completed and my nieces wedding over (which was spectacular btw .. she looked gorgeous and the wedding reception was just delightful and NO I didn't make a her quilt although I did think about it for .. uhmmm for all of 2 minutes) I had a little time last week to start my modern day redwork projects. I've had a few of these in my mind for a while and want to explore more options but I'm pleased with these first off projects. I'm currently in the mood for making some quilty textile items so I quilted up some Osnaburg for a bag and some linen for a cushion. I like them both although DH wasn't so keen on the bag suggesting the fabric was a little "mend and make do" ... which is exactly why I like it. Mind you, its not unusual for DH to a have a different opinion to me, something that was sure to make me see red some years ago but now strangely enough its something I actually quite perversely enjoy!

I am pleased to say that my hormones are a lot less rampant than they used to be and my days of seeing red are fewer but I still can get quite agitated by some things ....such as

1. Having to pay to park your car for grocery shopping (even if you do get some of your money back at the checkout)

2. Traffic police and speed cameras (not that I am a speedy speeder but have been caught doing just 4 miles an hour more than I should have.... argh!!!!!)

3. Canned food tins where the ring pull comes off BEFORE you've managed to pull back the lid!

4. Phones that stop ringing just as you manage to find the hands-free set down the side of the sofa !

5. Kids who inform you they WONT be in for dinner AFTER you've spent hours preparing and cooking it!

6. Family members (usually dh) that sits on the bed .. just after you have finished making it up and got it looking pristine and wrinkle free !

7. Trying to find your 6" acrylic ruler buried 'somewhere' in the huge pile of fabric thats 'somehow' has mysteriously accumulated on your cutting table!

8. Trying to remember 'exactly' where you stashed those pre-purchased quilt-show tickets!

9. Having a fantastically great idea for a new quilt design only to pick up this months patchwork mag and find its already been done!

10. Running out of water in your pressurised steam iron just when your in the mood to get a project done!

What makes you see red?