I don't think we've had a single day this holiday without something going on and, although our home is looking a little neglected and I never seem to get anything straight, I'm making the very very most of these few weeks off work, especially as this will be my last long school holiday - more about that later!
In between our various holiday doings I've found time for some sewing. I seem to have discovered a new found love of hand sewing. It's been the perfect crafty something for those little moments when I have time to sit and do. There's been a bit of embroidery and some English paper pieced patchwork and plenty of handquilting.
Finished just the other day - my scrappy log cabin quilt.
The log cabin squares were made back in April using some long skinny strips of Amy Butler fabrics that I picked up ages ago from the Cottonpatch in Birmingham.
You can't see it in the photos but the quilting thread is some lovely variegated cotton in pinks and greens that picks up the colours in the blocks. My basting and quilting leave an awful lot to be desired but I love it anyway.
I actually love the back just as much as the front, especially that centre panel print that looks, to me, like patchwork blocks.
I finished it off with a pretty scrappy binding.
After finishing that one, I decided the time had come to quilt my Basic Gray Blush quilt - the top of which had been made for over a year! The little squares in this one are from a design by Basic Gray, a company I first discovered when I fell in love with their scrapbook papers many years ago.
When I found out they were bringing my favourite papers out as a limited edition quilting fabric I just had to have some. I've had these little squares for years and, as I can't get this fabric anymore, had to make up the border with all sorts of bits and pieces.
The cream and white border is from dozens of scrappy strips - again bought as scraps from the Cottonpatch.
I set about machine quilting this one but, after 14 long rows of quilting, I discovered my little sewing machine had fallen out with the walking foot and it was puckering like a bugger so I swore a lot, unpicked every last bit of it and settled down to handquilt, this time using perle cotton - something new to me but I love it!
Here's the back, with puckers aplenty but it shows off the pattern (or lack of) of the handquilting. I was very strong-minded and dug through the stash for some fabrics to make into a scrappy binding - I teetered on the brink of a trip to the fabric shop but knew that could prove costly!
I absolutely adore these fabrics. I could quite happily sew with these fabrics and nothing else for ever and ever. Shame they're no longer in print!
I've had so much fun with these quilts and am about to put another quilt together ready for more handquilting. Then, it'll be onto making a Christmas present quilt for mother-in-law.
This quilting thing seems to have taken a bit of a hold!
As I mentioned at the start of this post, this will be my last long summer holiday off work. The reason why? I've handed in my notice and start a new job in the middle of September!
I'm having a complete change of direction, working two days as week as a Dementia Support Worker for Alzheimer's Society. It's less hours and less money but a permanent contract, so no more worrying every year about whether or not I'll have a job after March. I'm also really looking forward to the challenge of taking on a brand new role, with a really worthwhile organisation and although I'll have to work in the school holidays I will have three days each week to do my own thing and that is going to be soooo good!
More time for sewing, knitting, crochet, spinning, weaving,