Friday, 25 December 2015

New to Me in December

Welcome to our final New to Me link party of 2015. I hope wherever you are that you are enjoying a happy and peaceful Christmas Day!

My New to Me projects this December have been a varied bunch.

First up my handmade Door Wreath.

Christmas Door Wreath

A friend and I booked a half-day workshop to make our own Door Wreaths at a local college. It was a fun morning, although I was not the fastest so ended up frantically wiring up the dried lime slices and holly at the very last minute :) Ideally I would have added a bit more decoration to the wreath but I just ran out of time. Next year I will be much more focused :)

Next up my very first printed fabric designed by me and printed by Spoonflower!

The Embroiderers Guild are hosting a series of exhibitions next year to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the birth of Capability Brown. The photos I used as the basis of the fabric were taken at Wallington, a historic estate nearby which boasts a lake designed by Capability Brown. My local EG branch will be participating in an exhibition of stitched pieces designed to reflect the work of Capability Brown at Wallington as part of the national celebration. This fabric will be the inspiration for my contribution to the exhibition!

My final New to Me this month is my first attempt at a hidden zipper cushion back using this tutorial from made by Chrissie D.

I have a feeling that you will be seeing more of this closure method in the future, it was so straightforward to do and will also come in very handy if I don't have the perfect colour of zip to hand  :)

So that's my New to Me's this month, now it is your turn.

As ever please help to spread the word by linking back to this post in your post and/or adding the blog button to your sidebar.

Check out the other links too and, maybe, leave an encouraging comment along the way. The emphasis of this link party is to celebrate the trying of something new, whether it works out exactly as planned or not, so a little encouragement here and there would not go amiss! 

The link will remain open until 23.59GMT on December 31st, so you have some time yet to try something new and link up and join the party :)

Of course, if your New to Me activity this month involves a Christmas or Holiday make then be sure to link it up to this month's Ho, Ho, Ho and on We Sew Link Party over at Mud Pies and Pins

One lucky linker will be the winner of this sweet kit courtesy of Sew Hot!

Wishing you all the best for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Nearly ready!

Are you nearly ready for Christmas yet? As ever the number of things that I would like to make and the time that I have available to make them do not in any way coincide :)

Still, at least one gift has been sent and received in time.

Christmas Hamper

The Christmas Hamper with a homemade Christmas cake, Christmas pudding, jar of mincemeat and brandy butter is in the hands of my eldest son ready for him to produce them to impress the in-laws!

The basket and all the wrapping was from a local discount store and was the perfect size for the gifts I had in mind. It looked really well with the fancy pull-up bow, so I will be keeping an eye out for similar packs next year.

I found this delightful reindeer fabric on sale at Sew Hot and couldn't resist adding it to my recent order. If I somehow find a spare couple of hours in the next 24 hours it will become a boxy pouch, but I am not holding my breath on that one :)

The turkey and trimmings were collected this morning so it is beginning to look a lot like Christmas around here, hope it is where you are too.

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Introducing Sew Hot

This month's sponsor for the Ho, Ho, Ho and on We Sew Link Party giveaway is the generous mother and daughter team of Pam and Rebecca at Sew Hot

 They did not hesitate when I approached them for a giveaway prize for the Link Party, and have donated the kit and pattern for this lovely mini quilt, which will certainly brighten one lucky linker's day!

As some of you may not have come across Sew Hot before, I thought you might like an introduction to this great business. Having purchased from them several times I can personally vouch for their great selection of products and excellent customer service.

These applique scissors were my first purchase from Sew Hot and they have been invaluable, gripping the fabric like no other scissors. They are just one example of the great range of products that Rebecca and Pam stock.

For an insight into how Sew Hot came to be read on - 

"Sew Hot was created by a mum and daughter team in order to validate to other family members the obvious compulsion they have for purchasing top-of-the-line and cutting edge fabric collections, unusual and trendy patterns, and high-quality notions.  With the thought that if they loved to sew using these quality materials, then, by golly, others might like to sew with them, too! Knowing little of what it REALLY took to run a website, these two jumped in feet first, hunted down the best products at the best prices, and as they say "the rest is history!" They built a website, and the sewists came. It was obvious they were on to something, the sewing community loved having the best resources all in one place, and Sew Hot has grown to be a reliable and personable resource for the sewing and crafting community.
FQBS new-064
Sew Hot has one passion: to bring the newest and hottest trends and products to sewists and quilters in the UK and the EU.  With a modern sense for design and colour, Rebecca and Pam have searched far and wide to gather their unique and eclectic assortment of products that you are sure to enjoy! 
Pam has a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Art and loves painting and designing quilts. She has experimented in the past with spinning, weaving, hand dyeing wool and fabric, embroidery, and a variety of other crafts before settling on quilting as her passion. Rebecca has been quilting for 20 years after being taught initially by her mother, and then taught the more modern techniques by a friend at university. She has taught many people to quilt herself over the years and enjoys helping people discover the joy of working with fabric.
CT011 sweet mariposa
Please drop by our website and enjoy the variety of products we offer!  We hope you love them as much as we do!"
Well I think we can all empathise with that compulsion :)
Do check out  Sew Hot  I can guarantee that you will find lots of wonderful things to take your fancy, and if you sign up for the Sew Hot newsletter then you can take advantage of the weekly special which is valid for that day only. Today's offer is 20% of all green fabric! 

If you would like to be in with a chance to win that lovely mini quilt kit then head on over to Mud Pies and Pins to link up your Christmas and Holiday makes.

Friday, 18 December 2015

Ho, Ho, Ho and on We Sew - the final straight!

Welcome to the final Ho, Ho, Ho and on We Sew Link Party of 2015, I hope that by now you are all organised with your Christmas and Holiday crafting, but if not fear not there is loads of inspiration for Christmas and Holiday crafts in our archive of Ho, Ho, Ho and on We Sew posts just follow the link at the top of the page.

And for even more inspiration head on over to this month's hostess Paula at Mud Pies and Pins who is sharing her tutorial for a handy button down pouch to solve at least one of your gift wrapping dilemmas :)

Of course it wouldn't be a Ho, Ho, Ho and on We Sew Link Party without a giveaway now would it, and this month we have a wonderful giveaway prize courtesy of the lovely Rebecca and Pam at Sew Hot

Logo Sew Hot 
 They have donated a kit for this gorgeous mini quilt that will make a great addition to your winter decoration. 

To be in with a chance of winning this great kit all you need to do is link up your Christmas and Holiday makes for this month over at Mud Pies and Pins,  where one lucky winner will be randomly drawn when the Link Party ends at midnight on December 31st.

My own holiday make this month has been waiting quite a while for its turn in the spotlight.

I knew as soon as I saw this printed panel from Cat and Vee a while ago that it would be perfect for a gift for my newly-qualified lawyer son. The panel measures 18" square so was ideal for a cushion.

I used a New to Me method for the back closure of the cushion, a hidden zipper using this tutorial from made by Chrissie D. I like how clean the back looks with this hidden zipper method. It was so straightforward to do that I will definitely use this method again.

So, that's my Ho, Ho, Ho and on We Sew project for this month, now it is your turn to share your Christmas and Holiday crafting over at Mud Pies and Pins

As always, a special thank you goes to all of our generous sponsors who have wholeheartedly supported the Ho, Ho, Ho and on We Sew Link Party throughout the year.

Crafty Trimmings

Logo Sew Hot

Plush Addict Logo

Quilting Fabric at the Fat Quarter Shop

Linking up to Crazy Mom Quilts

Thursday, 17 December 2015

A forest of delight

The embroidery class that I started attending in September is held in a cottage adjoining a local church, and as I discovered a couple of weeks ago the church holds a Christmas Tree festival every year over a couple of days in December.

This year the festival finished on a Tuesday so I was able to visit after my class had finished in the afternoon.

I wasn't quite sure what to expect and was quite taken aback to discover that there were over 80 decorated trees placed around the church. Each tree was the work of a business or group connected with the village.

This vintage book and toy tree was the work of a local cafe and vintage shop, isn't it delightful?

This tree was a particular favourite, as I am sure you have already guessed it was the work of a local wedding dress company :)

This was the tree entered into the Festival by the ladies of the Embroidery Group.

A workshop in the summer making the embroidered and beaded dragonflies that you can see in close up above was the impetus for the tree. As you can see the other decorations on the tree were all sewing related. As well as the gold scissors above, there were reels of shiny thread and skeins of metallic embroidery thread to add to the sparkle.

Aren't the dragonflies beautiful? I think it will be a while though before my embroidery skills are up to that level!

Linking up to

Really Random

Friday, 4 December 2015

A stylish sewing bag!

The class that my daughter-in-law and I attended recently at Just Quilting was to make a quilted bag for sewing accessories.

Regular readers will not be surprised to know that deciding which fabric to take with me for the class took up an awful lot of time in the night before we were due to go. I finally went for the half yard of Mary Thistle from Pretty Potent by Anna Maria Horner that has been lurking in my stash just waiting for the perfect project to come along.

And this was it!

We quilted the exterior fabric first, which took me twice as long as everyone else as I went for crosshatch quilting instead of the much quicker and easier vertical lines that my fellow classmates chose :)

Although I had brought along some fabrics from my stash to use for the binding, when I saw the bright blue plain bolt on the shelf at Just Quilting, it was definitely calling to me and I am delighted that I listened to that call. It was by far a better match for that gorgeous thistle print than any of the fabrics I had pulled from the stash.

The bag has ribbon tied sides and you can imagine how pleased I was to discover ribbon that was the perfect match ready and waiting to be used in my very jumbled ribbon bag. Don't you just love when that happens?

The interior of the bag has two divided pockets and one gathered pocket. I hadn't made a gathered pocket before and I think that I should have made the elastic a bit tighter as it tends to gape, but other than that I am thrilled to bits with my stylish new sewing bag. Hopefully, my stitching will be as stylish as the bag soon too :)

Linking up to Crazy Mom Quilts
Elm Street Quilts

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