Wednesday, 30 April 2014

simple sewing and a phew!

I've been getting on with my QAL and BOM blocks but I started with the easy bits. I've yet to do March of the Classic meets Modern QAL but here is April's Double Z block:

I want to get on to the pretty appliqué but for now here's my background for the first English Country Garden BOM block:

I know it looks dark and kind of boring but it's going to make that daisy pop and I've used some of my very favourite fabrics since I've decided this will be for the (not so) baby girl. I need to get cracking with Joan's big girl quilt too, those butterflies are waiting on me finishing the final appliqué block.

It's been fun getting back to work on the machine because I've done some marathon hand quilting. I just finished quilting a baby quilt and this is how much of the cream perle thread I had left - so lucky I didn't run out!

I've got the bias binding ready - the chevron print is hopefully going to add a cool graphic look to the edge of the quilt - not that I forgot I was cutting it on the bias and it wouldn't be stripy obviously *doh*

Wish me luck it doesn't look too much of a f**k up bad!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
**I've got 666 gfc followers - please someone else follow me quick!!** 
Another phew, saved by the lovely Catrin :)

Sunday, 27 April 2014

I totally caved

Before I caved (keep reading), I managed to finish these bee blocks and a siggy for the lovely Di:

I also received some lovely fabric goodness from the Fat Quarter Shop:

Lilac Daisies, 30's Playtime by Chloe's Closet; Navy Soho Solids by Timeless Treasures; Pink Floral Plaid, Kimberly's Garden by Fresh Water Designs, Lotus Teensy Weensy, Littlest by Art Gallery Fabrics and a great panel for a kids quilt Jungle Bunch by Wendy Bentley.

My husband got a phone upgrade, which means I now have an iphone (he already does). Cue cute case:

And then I caved. I totally caved. Somehow OH DEAR I found my way onto Instagram so I am there, stumbling along and no clue what I'm doing but I have to say I much prefer it to twitter (which I've always hated). So if you've not found me already then come and follow me and I will follow you back!

Molli Sparkles

Thursday, 24 April 2014

we went stir crazy

We had some fun playing with my computers camera over the Easter holidays while recovering from the pox...

My little Batgirl has inherited her mother's tendency to wave in photos it appears:

Then I was literally crying with laughter at this one that makes your mouth go all big:

Nicky you thought my laugh was infectious before!! ;)

Fred's favourite was this spooky setting:

And the whole family piled on the sofa to play:

Yeah the kids are cute but I could stare at my handsome husband all day given the opportunity!

Random aside... I've had a couple of emails recently... forward a message or recipe to so many people and get them back. I enjoy new recipes and positive messages etc but I'm way too busy to enter into these things so please don't include me! I don't mean to be a sour puss but I just don't have the time :)

Also has anyone else been getting emails from ad companies or dress companies?! I'm sure they don't even read my blog as it has nothing to do with my content. I'm happy to advertise products and companies that I endorse but seriously you will not be seeing ads for online lotteries anywhere here!! I might need money but I am setting principles.

Live A Colorful Life

Wednesday, 23 April 2014


I've been wanting some fun hair accessories so in preparation I got some lovely fabrics from Miss Matatabi and a couple of sale FQs for good luck:

There's a great reversible double gauze, the most beautiful Joy Flower, Nani Iro (see detail below), Fruit Paradise in Blue, Cotorienne by Yuwa and I'm not sure about the last one - it's pretty but isn't actually the print I ordered so I've contacted Frances and hopefully it can get sorted out. **Edit: She messaged me straight back and is sending me the right one - I love great customer service! Thanks Frances!**

The internet then distracted me with these cute washi tapes I got on sale from Chamby and Cor:

This morning the postman distracted me further when he delivered these beautiful Essentials by Pat Bravo prints that I won in a giveaway from The Intrepid Thread. Art Gallery fabrics are so very soft and I'm hoping to turn these into cute summer dresses for the girls! Thank you Julie :)

I've been enjoying this song and even the baby is nodding her head to it:

I need to stop getting distracted from today's aim... to finish my bee blocks!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Monday, 21 April 2014

Great prizes to be had...

Today the Jaybird Quilt Sew Along starts at Sew Sweetness. There will be some fabulous reviews and makes from a talented group of bloggers over the next few weeks and then there's an AMAZING competition!

Here is the schedule of guest posts that will appear:

 April 21 - Lynn @ The Little Red Hen – Science Fair
April 22 – Scott @ Blue Nickel Studios - Seaside
April 23 – Emily @ Mommy’s Naptime – Mini Disco
April 24 – Hadley @ Flying Blind on a Rocket Cycle - Jawbreaker
April 25 – Kelly @ Kelby Sews - Giggles

April 28 – Becky @ My Fabric Obsession - Snack Time
April 29 – Sara @ Sew Sweetness - Tasty
April 30 – Michelle @ City House Quilts - Candy Dish
May 1 – Debbie @ A Quilter’s Table - Northern Lights
May 2 – Marci @ Marci Girl Designs - Lotus

May 5 – Kerry @ Verrykerryberry - Rock Candy
May 6 – Andres @ Mad Tesla - Mini Northern Lights
May 7 – Lee @ May Chappell - Day Break
May 8 – Leona @ Leona’s Quilting Adventure - Wonton
May 9 – Heather @ House of a la Mode - Disco

May 12 – Jane @ Quilt Jane - Night Sky
May 13 – Lucy @ Charm About You - Tiny Dancer - yeah that's me, the slacker at the end ;)

Head over to Sew Sweetness to read about the spectacular prizes and sew along with us!

Jaybird Quilts Sew Along

Thursday, 17 April 2014

cooling off

The sun has been out this week so sunglasses and silly faces have been mandatory

The chicken pox are fading and there have been a few baths with oats in. Only when I was trying to pour oats into the foot end of a cut pair of tights I realised that's a really tricky thing to do on your own...

tie the top and chuck it in the bath - very soothing and helps stop dry skin

Good job I'm a resourceful mama!

Live A Colorful Life

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

so fresh and so clean

My husband had the urge to spring clean over the weekend and the downstairs of our house looks much brighter and a bit less cluttered (ignoring my sewing stuff and the kids toys!). It must have been catching because I cleaned up my blog a little... I'm liking the fresher look, it feels like Spring.

Charm About You

This week I got these adorable Rocket Age prints from Fluffy Sheep Quilting. I think these are just so cool and I love the retro look. Rockets and space... obviously my son loves them too! I have to think of something fun to make him, maybe shorts for the Summer?

As a bonus when I ordered I used up some of my reward points. There's a clever computer thingy in the site that works out your reward points when you make a purchase and you can check the points in your account and use them any time. In my book that's basically getting free fabric (or Aurifil, or perle or any other lovely thing in the shop) for buying fabric and it's amazing how quickly those points add up! Head over and take a look, there's lots of fabulous fat quarters, all under £3!

I've been doing some hand quilting, straight lines and circles, on a baby quilt for a friend. I drew round a glass for the circles and it reminded me how annoying drawing on fabric can be. I've tried loads of different pens and methods for marking, when it comes to straight lines nothing beats a hera marker but when I want to draw a circle or pattern I want a pen. Pencils seem to drag so much, the pens that disappear in the air are ok and that blue one that washes off is pretty good but for some reason both make me a bit nervous.

I recently ordered a frixion pen because I know other bloggers have recommended it. I wasn't convinced and still felt nervous but oh how wrong I was! This pen is awesome. It writes so smoothly with no dragging, it's really easy to see on the fabric (I bought a black one) and you just iron the quilt and it vanishes. VANISHES. Even under the perle thread?! I don't really understand (nor do I actually care) how it works, it just DOES! I even scribbled out a line where I'd messed up and it completely disappeared. Hello me drawing loads of embroidery patterns, quilting patterns and whatever else I want not to be permanent. Very clever pen.

Le Challenge

There's a new theme over at le challenge, this month it is NATURE. Are you working on anything that fits the theme or are you inspired to make something new? The link party for finished projects is 15th May. Head over to check it out, there's a random winner every month!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Monday, 14 April 2014

Bright arrows - le challenge

The theme at le challenge this month was bright and I decided to use some bright embroidery thread to stitch up this (currently) free pattern from Sublime Stitching.

I did a simple backstitch, satin stitch for the arrowheads and outlined them - a quick but pretty finish. I chose to stitch on Sketch Grey Screen Texture, Timeless Treasures.

I used a bright rainbow of colours but decided not to go in strict colour order because I wanted the green and blues to make up the larger arrows.

To finish the hoop I picked out some selvedges and very simply wrapped them around the outer hoop. I didn't glue or anything, just tucked the ends under and overlapped the next one until I reached the end. I like that I can change it easily if I get bored and want to reuse the hoop.

This is a good way to show off the cute designs you get on selvedges and I will definitely do this again. That's the first little finish off my FAL list.

Now I just have to find a place to hang this baby.

Head over to le challenge to see the other bright sparks!

Le Challenge

Sunday, 13 April 2014

something new, something old and something kawaii!

It totally did. Some lovely neutrals from Plush Addict to add to my rose star quilt and I've got big love for prints like this right now:

I also picked background fabrics from my stash for the English Country Garden BOM. I like the idea of going darker, it's not something I've done before and I've ordered some invisible thread so I can do a 'new to me' style of appliqué. I'm loving Kerry's BOM, check it out for some great all round ideas and advice as well as the beautiful Daisy block this month.

I find stationary just as thrilling as fabric so here's some lovely goodies I picked up with a voucher I had for Asking for Trouble - such a cute shop, the little kawaii characters make me smile!

Molli Sparkles

Saturday, 12 April 2014

My aims to Finish Along for Q2

It's time again to take a look at projects I have in progress and link them up so everyone can give me a good kick up the bum to get them finished!

Roll overs (not in a good lottery kind of way) from Q1:

1. Ottoman - I've said it before and I'll say it again, this tired mama needs something to put her feet up on. Need to prioritise myself and get this done. It's all creased because it's been lying around but it's a great pattern and shouldn't take too long to finish.

2. Star Flower Quilt - It's sad this is getting ignored, the love needs to be reignited.

3. Rose Star Quilt - still probably won't get done but miracles do happen.

4. Butterfly Quilt - still have the last appliqué block to do but so excited to get this one put together and still running a hundred different quilting ideas through my head.

and more WIPs to be done:

5. Baby Quilt - the top is now sewn together so it just needs quilting and binding and all will be revealed next month

6. Poem embroidery - this totally stalled a while ago but I'm hoping the lighter spring days will mean I can get it done (I really need a good daylight lamp!)

7. Bright project for le challenge - link opens on Monday so need to get a shift on!

8. Teeny tiny Liberty hexies - remember those?! I've made three hexie flowers. Driving me a bit mad so might just do one or two more and then think of something to do with them.

9. EPP pincushion - fabrics and pattern picked, a fun little make.

10. Basket for thread - need to sew these little squares and get my thread out of the sad plastic bag they currently reside in.

So that's a bunch of fun things to get finished... providing I don't get sidetracked ;)

Finish Along 2014