Tuesday, 30 June 2009


We got home from Glasto to discover we've got a Mama hedgehog and her three babies nesting in the garden. Aaaah, how sweet. Mum can really plough her way through the cat food. The babies eat too - we hope they survive.

p.s. I tried uploading a video of one the babys' scoffing away, but it took aaaaages and the computer crashed twice, so it's obviously not meant to be - I may try again at some point.

Monday, 29 June 2009

Himself and I are off to Glastonbury

Left at 7.40am, Thursday morning and on The Whizz Kid's advice, avoided major roads. We stopped and had a coffee break at a tatty Little Chef and got to the Glastonbury site at 10am. Splendid, parked in 'Pink' West 32 (Miles from the nearest entrance) and loaded ourselves up for the trek.
Our chosen spot was next to two brothers who had driven over from Ireland, they kindly offered to give us a hand pitching our tent. People were arriving constantly and we then had some new neighbours - two chaps who had bought a new tent and no idea how to put it up & of course the instructions were ignored. I offered to hold one end while they fastened the other but my offer was declined, so I read my book and surreptitiously watched while they struggled, trying very hard not to laugh out loud. Seriously, it was like something from the Chuckle Brothers. One end of the tent would fall over while they both attended the other, and then vice versa - this went on for twenty minutes. Not much sleep that night as lots of partying going on and we managed a couple of hours kip at the most. We woke to steady rain at 4.30am - ugghhh. The rain carried on for most of the morning, but finally brightened up just in time for us to go and see our first act. Good job we bought wellies though....
Last year we found Henry's Beard Cafe to eat - they really do make the best breakfasts.
Waiting for Rolf Harris at Jazz World stage. After the initial rain - the rest of the weekend was boiling hot and despite using warp factor 30 sun cream we were both a bit crispy by Sunday.
Michael Jackson T-shirts for sale in the marketplace printed with: Wanted 5th Member for Jackson Five - It don't matter if you're black or white.
Wheelie Bin drummers at the entrance to the circus fields.
'The Park' entrance.
Blur on the Pyramid Stage.
We left on Sunday night and got home at 2am.
Looking forward to next year already.....

Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Birthday Pimms and Cricket

Happy Birthday to my darling Chic Girl.

We were going to go to The Banksy exhibition in Bristol, but got there just after they let the last person in - Boooo. We will go in a few weeks time, when the initial fuss has died down. So we went to a nearby wine bar instead where they mix a mean Pimms (+ we must have got our '5 a day' with all the 'extras') - Mmmmm, cheers:-)


Chic Girl was on her second glass of Pimms by now, hence the huge grin.

We then went to meet Himself and some friends to watch 20/20 cricket.....

We scoffed strawberries, raspberries, cream and meringues (Eton Mess) all washed down with plenty of champagne - Mmmm, lovely.

Oh, errr, in case you were interested, apparently Warwickshire won.

We then went on to a Moroccan restaurant and had the tenderest lamb Tagine for supper - sorry, no photos though.

Sunday, 21 June 2009

Quilt show at Sandown

Himself & I went to the patchwork championships today at Sandown racecourse, courtesy of Ros Pollock who kindly sent me her two tickets in exchange for taking photos of the three quilts she entered (Ros won two first place rosettes and a second place rosette).

Because either the NQC dates have always been the same as Glastonbury and/or Chip Girl's birthday, it's been at least seven years since I have attended this show. Hmmmm, it is much smaller than the last time I came (I think it was at Ascot). I guess the Festival of Quilts at the NEC has really stolen this quilt shows thunder. I am going to try hard and get a quilt made to enter here next year. It would be sad for a quilt show to just fade away.

One of the stands.

Some of us from BQL met up at 2pm. A couple of other members stayed just out of shot. Ack, it's only a photo people - It's not like I'm not going to steal your soul!

Two landscape quilts by Sally Holman

Ros Pollock - 'Coneflowers'

Detail from 'Coneflowers' - the butterflies were slightly 3d
I looked hard but did not get a whiff of a printed catalogue at the show. Grrrr. So although I did take lots more photos I thought I would be able to read the names off the photos when they were uploaded on to the computer - but I couldn't quite read the printed slips on the screen, (they were very small) so I don't feel comfortable about putting up photos of quilts without the makers names. Most annoying.

Saturday, 20 June 2009

Let there be light...

The vintage mini 'bag' chandelier in our bedroom. A compromise, as Himself looked at me in horror when I suggested a chandelier, I also vaguely remember the words "over my dead body" being mentioned, but that could be my imagination....I showed him this one on E-bay and since he didn't object, I bid for it and was thrilled to get it. All the metal was originally a very brassy gold, so I carefully undid the crystals and painted all the metal silver. I think it looks much better now.

The star lantern in my sewing room - I love this little lantern so much - we had a HUGE one hanging over the stairwell in our last house and I so regretted leaving it behind, even though there would be nowhere to put it in this house without causing serious injury. So I was thrilled to find this one last weekend. It'll be easier to clean than our last big one too, as I can reach up on tip toes and dust this one - see, there had to be something good about having 8ft ceilings!

S'cuse the rather ummm 'lively' ceilings. We've had all the downstairs ceiling replastered to be nice and flat, but couldn't afford to 'do' upstairs too - but it is my wish to get rid of the Artex in our bedroom at some stage. Ho hum.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

It only takes a minute girl.......

To get to Cardiff Millenium Stadium - but it takes flippin' hours to get home again!

On Tuesday night Chip Girl & I went to see Take That in concert - OMG, I honestly have never seen anything quite like it.

This wasn't just four blokes singing and prancing around to 60,0000 screaming women and a few men. This was a full on circus production. Notice the huge elephant in the above photo, Take That were all stood on top and sang while the elephant gradually turned around and walked back towards the big top. The 'tail' was a woman hanging upside down and swaying. They sang lots of old favourites and had clearly been working out as some of the dance routines were pretty full on.

It was all amazing - and always so much to look at - no break for the group, loads of costume changes, plenty of dancing and of course all of us in the audience screamed our lungs out! Ahem, I'm still a little raspy today!

In fact there was so much to look at all the time - jugglers, clowns, a man tap dancing on a huge drum. A woman with hoola hoops on fire who was then winched into the air where she continued to gyrate her body to keep the flaming hoop spinning. A tightrope walker (without a safety net) who managed to go across three long wires without falling. We saw trapeze artistes and people inside huge metal wheels who rolled up and down the extended stage. At one point Howard, Jason and Mark all gingerly got on unicycles and sped up and down the runway, Gary however came trundling along on a little kids bike with training wheels - too funny.

Re-light My Fire saw Oletea Adams come on stage and sing - and boy, that lady has some stage prescence (sp?) and most of it says "don't mess with me"!

The only downside was the traffic to get in and out of Cardiff, which was horrendous - The Whizz Kid came to Cardiff to collect us and we sat in traffic for hours, I've never seen anything quite like it. I didn't get home until 3am and was like a croaky zombie all day at work today. But it was still, so worth it. I'd go again in a heartbeat, although I wouldn't even class myself as a fan!

Monday, 15 June 2009

Over The River, part 2

Remember this 'Over The River and Through The Woods' pattern I bought from Buttonberry?

Well, the stitching is now completed. I used a teal embroidery thread,

on some vintage (and filthy), fine Irish linen I bought from EBay.

I know the fabric looks very wrinkly, but once it's all quilted, I'm sure it will look fine.

Just got to do the patchwork squares......
but sadly, I've kind of lost interest now.....

Sunday, 14 June 2009

Peg bag

See what an exciting life I lead?! Today I made..... A peg bag, ha ha. I've needed a new one for months now, so just before the old one literally drops off it's perch, I've made a new one. This time I've used a fabric that I actually like, since I have finally realised I'm going to be looking at it for quite a few years. Do you need to be disgusted with a photo showing the state the old one was? no, I don't think so. So here is the new one - handsome eh?

Saturday, 13 June 2009

Hourglass quilt

I had been collecting 'thirties' style fabrics for a while and so thought it was about time I started using them. So along with an old soft cotton sheet, I made this quilt using a block called hourglass.
I would like to share the tutorial on how to make this block - so bear with me while I try and figure it out.

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Table mats

Table mat made for my Mum from my own design. This was done using trapunto stuffed flowers with 'McTavishing' quilting in the background - or in my case 'McKandying'. It's white on one side of the mat and cream on the other and 42cm diameter.

This mat usually sits on our dining room table
The base is part of an old 100% wool blanket, washed and felted and the flowers all lovely soft wool felt, hand appliqued. This piece is roughly 90cm long

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

Safe arrival

Our tickets for Glastonbury have arrived - woo hoo:-)
Just need to find my wellies and our tent........

Monday, 8 June 2009

Graphic Tablet part 2

Ha, Well a fun Saturday evening and almost all of yesterday was spent trying to figure out the tablet - sheesh. Very frustrating, I nearly packed up the whole thing to take it back for a refund. But I'm glad I persevered. So far, I'm also glad I didn't spend a fortune on it either! I think I will use it - but it needs some practice.

The pen and tablet could replace my mouse and the pen seems far more intuitive to use than my cordless scrolling mouse, but even so, unless I develop arthritis or RSI I won't swap over. I would say though that if there is anyone who has never used a computer mouse, the tablet and pen might prove more comfortable to use.

Saturday, 6 June 2009

Graphic Tablet

I have bought myself this graphics tablet, from Asda. It's only small, but it was also cheap and frankly although I think I need one, I do wonder if it'll be another gadget that I end up thinking was an expensive waste of money. Which is why when these were mentioned by the Money Saving Expert as being a good purchase for fifteen quid I was prepared to give it a go. Especially since the last time I looked, the tablet I was lusting after started at over a hundred pounds. Of course now I need to sit down and work out how it works. I'm banking on spending most of this evening figuring it out, since I nearly always find the instructions manuals for anything like this are written by geeks for geeks, but not half wits like me.

Friday, 5 June 2009

Bags - made by me

This one is mine, designed for the BQL bag challenge in 2008. The pattern/tutorial for this bag is available from Villavin crafts

Purple velvet for Chic Girl.

Made for an internet friend.

My lovely Chic Girl modelling in the style of sixties knitting patterns with her cow print bag.

This one is for me, made using furnishing weight linen and a feather boa.

Lovely fabric eh? Made two of these bags, one for Chic Girl and one for Lanky Boy's Girlfriend - they both seemed to like them very much. No more of this fabric left though.

Two of the three bags I designed and made for Chic Girl's Bridesmaids.

Silk bag for Chic Girl, made from the same fabric as her wedding dress and lined with her Bridesmaids dresses fabric.

Plus and Minus

First the minus: Getting knowledge from books doesn't happen through osmosis - I already know it didn't work with Cd's since I still cannot speak either Spanish or French, despite having both language courses in my possession. I kinda hoped the book osmosis thing would work better though, but clearly it doesn't, tch what a shame!

On the plus side: I've finally learned how to successfully watermark my photos after actually reading a chapter of 'Digital Essentials' by Gloria Hanson. I really, really must read more of this wonderful book.

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

BQL Challenge work....

Well today I have been working on the July challenge for BQL (British Quilting List) No photos of that one at the moment as it's a suprise for the group. But here is a couple of others:

I've also been uploading lots of photos for our blog which you can see all the participants wonderful little quiltlets as well as all the bags from last years challenge.

Edit: Here is the July quilt.