On Monday I managed to finish the 'Dotty Simple Stripes Quilt' and it was given to my friend on Wednesday, happily she loved it :)

I'm linking up to TGIFF which is being hosted by the wonderful and brave Erin this week despite the fact that her sewing machine is kerplut :(  Go show her some love!

Also linking up to Crazy Mom Quilts, Finish it up Friday!

Even though my machine is working I have a confession! We've had lovely family come to stay so I've not done any sewing since Monday. What with all the lists I've been making and all the fun and frivolity round here there's been no time! Today, though, I was determined and got down to some fmq practice.

I'm linking up to the wonderful Fluffy Sheep Quilting for the Free Motion Friday. This week it's Slate Tiles, so here's my first attempt:

Not totally horrendous but no where near good! I started on the left (shocking) and got a bit better as I went on. If forgot to set my stitch to small so the length was all over the place, it's still so hard to stay consistent.
I'm also really bad at straight lines! See how these 'slates' looked more curvy at the corners?

I tried again and got them a little better:

Then I had a second attempt, this time my area was much smaller so the whole thing was a bit tricky but it's not totally awful:

There's still lots of room for improvement, clearly!!

I tried going much more slowly but I find this very difficult - I tend to race along!! Must resist the urge for speed!

The fluff I'm referring to in the title is not the sheepy kind (although I must admit I have a deep rooted fear of the little blighters - don't ask and NEVER baaaaa at me!) but the fluff in my machine. Inspired by Helen giving her machine some TLC over at Archie the Wonder Dog I thought, after having it for over eight years, I should give it a good clean - I know, I know, I'm very lazy!!
Here is the fluff monster:

Honestly, it wasn't quite as bad as I was expecting but it's still pretty gross. Here's what I gathered:

Since I'm not sure he ever really reads this I'll share that this looks like what often accumulates in my husband's belly button!! Hahahahahaha!! *oh dear, I really hope he doesn't read it now!!*

The only thing I have managed to achieve quilting wise was some cutting for the Dead Simple QAL. Finally! As I was doing it I have fallen more in love with the palette:

Now I need to get to piecing, tonight me and A Boy Named Sue are going to get reacquainted!