Monday, 25 March 2013

Lucie Summers Workshops

My weekends normally consist of children's parties, trips to the park/zoo/beach/cafe and having to endure CBeeBies on a Saturday morning, while attempting to relax and have a lazy morning. 
So when I heard that Lucie Summers, fabric designer for Moda, was coming to Jersey to teach 2 days of weekend workshops, I was first to get my name on the list as you can imagine.  In case you've not come across her fabrics, here are a few. Aren't they gorgeous.
And here is Lucie!

And oh my, what a wonderful weekend I had.  On the Saturday we learnt about screen printing, and geneally spent the day getting covered in paint and making our own lovely fabrics.  First with our own designs and screens that we made, and then with some of Lucies. 
Unfortunately I didn't get to take any more photos during the screen printing process, as I was far to busy having lots of fun, not to mention getting paint everywhere.  And an Iphone and paint are probably not a good combination. 
But I did manage to get a few shots of Lucie's gorgeous quilts, that she has made and her mum has skillfully quilted.  

Lucie, her mum and their Porthole Quilt
These quilts use the 'Portholes' technique, which is what we learnt on the Sunday.  
So on Sunday Morning, I took my new Bernina, mountains of fabric, and every quilting supply you could possibly imagine, and spent the day, well...chatting.  Most people made about 4 blocks, and I made, er...2.

But I learnt a new skill (which is just genius by the way) and had just the best time.  I hardly remembered to stop for lunch, so that must be the sign of a good workshop. 

And Lucie herself was fantastic.  She put everyone at ease, we were all really relaxed, and it was wonderful to see so many portholes in so many different styles and fabrics by the end of the day.
So if you ever get a chance to take a class with Lucie, all I can say is do it!  She's so talented, and so is her wonderful mum, who was on standby to help out, advise and yes, chat!  No wonder I didn't get much done, I was too busy standing around!  But who cares.   I had a fabulous weekend and didn't want it to end. 
Linking up with:

Plum and June
Sarah x

Monday, 18 March 2013

Eisteddfod Jersey 2013

This weekend was the exhibition of the Spring Festival of Creative Arts Eistedffod.  I was particularly excited to go, because a few weeks previously, I had been encouraged to enter by my blogging friend and now real life friend, Sue of Just Sew Sue.   I decided to enter my Vintage India quilt. 
So when I arrived, I of course rushed over to the quilt section, along with my daughter, who spotted my quilt immediately.

And on closer inspection, I was delighted to see that I had been awarded a SILVER!! 

All quilts get marked, from Platinum, gold, silver, bronze to copper. So for my first ever entry, I was thrilled :-)

And my goodness, what a wealth of creative talent there is here in Jersey.  Look at all this beautiful work.  I could have stayed for hours. 

And it's not just reserved for adults, there was some wonderful entries by school children too.

The flower arranging was stunning;

And I just loved this embroidered piece with it's teeny tiny details.

I took so many photos and I only wish I could have stayed longer.  But sadly my one year old's attention span and ability to appreciate art is limited, and after about 45 minutes it was time to go.   
So I just want to say a huge thank you to Sue who gave me the confidence to enter.  Do hop over to her blog and take a look, her work is truly stunning, and worthy of the many Eistedffod prizes that she won.

Back soon to share with you a quilt finish that I'm very excited about :-)

Linking up with Plum and June's Monday Link Up.

Plum and June 

Sarah x

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Book Reviews

This month I've had the privilege of being guest book reviewer for The Sewing Directory Website

It's a wonderful website, where you can find, among other things; details of craft courses, events, sewing shops and suppliers, giveaways and competitions, interviews with authors, and book reviews.  Do check out the website and blog, it's such a useful  and informative resource. 

I've had great fun reviewing two books.

Firstly, this beautiful and comprehensive embroidery book;

And also the much talked about and anticipated....

If you've seen the Marcelle Medallion quilt in Liberty Love, then you will know just how stunning and gorgeous it is.  Everyone's making it!  It's certainly on my 'must make' list for this year at the earliest opportunity :-)
Both books are an absoloute 'must have' and I'm delighted to have them in my collection to refer to time and time again. 
What is your latest quilting book purchase?  I'd love to hear from you and talk about my 2 favourite things -  books and quilting!
Sarah x

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

My Dream Machine

I can hardly believe it's a week since I posted.  So much has happened, not to mention a radical change in the weather.  From glorious Spring we have been plunged into the depths of winter once more, and us little Channel Islands have even been making headline news and breaking all kinds of records with the amount of snow we've had over the last few days.  Here is my daughter in our garden this lunchtime helping daddy clear our car.
It's been snowing continuously for over 24 hours and while it does finally appear to have stopped, I think it's going to be around for some time yet, and it's another snow day for my daughter tomorrow.  I'll have to get my thinking cap on for more indoor activities.  (We've already made cupcakes, made pizza, been shape hunting, made paintings, done puzzles...)
Anyhow, onto other, very exciting news...I have a new sewing machine!  (You can tell I didn't take that picture this week).
It is no less than the Bernina 550QE and although I chose it, I didn't know I was getting it so soon; my husband surprised me and ordered it in time for Mother's Day.  I can't tell you how grateful I am to him, it's such a wonderful and generous gift.
And I all I can say is, it sews like a dream. 

It has more features and functions than I know what to do with, and I can't wait to try them all out.

After studying the manual for hours, stroking all the accessories and watching the instructional DVD, I overcame my trepidation and took the plunge.   So far I have made some bunting for an order, tested out the alphabet stitches, and marvelled at the ease in which I could change the feet, stitch type, the length, everything. 
I am loving the knee lever that allows you to work hands free, and it just quietly hums, almost purrs, as you work.  I also love the rhythmic and controlled stitching and winding a bobbin is a breeze and done in seconds. 

It also comes with many accessories; feet, extension table, threads, bobbins, you name it.  And look at this gorgeous case to keep all those bits and bobs safe. 

The major feature that comes with this machine is what's called the Bernina Stitch Regulator (BSR) which ensures absoloute consistency in stitch length when FMQ. 
I have it on excellent authority from my dear quilting friend ChrissieD (who has an excellent blog which you simply must check out) that the BSR is amazing and life changing in equal measure, and an absoloute must have. So I can't wait to give it a go. 
Sewing has never been so much fun :-)
Sarah x

Monday, 4 March 2013

Spring Again

I thought that Spring had arrived a few weeks ago. 
But then it snowed.  Does that mean it was winter again??!
But thankfully  normal service has resumed and there are blue skies aplenty, it's warming up and the daffodils are starting to bloom. 

The tractors are racing down our road, in anticipation of harvesting the fields.

And I was finally able to get outside and take a half decent photo of this... the central panel of my latest quilt using the Out at Sea collection by Sarah Jane. 

I just love this fabric and those cheeky little pirates;

I designed an anchor and used the raw edge applique method, placing it over 2 inch squares.

So I have decided to call it Anchors Away.  For obvious reasons!

I hope that the sun is shining and that you are having a lovely day too. 

Linking up with

Thank you so much for stopping by. 

Sarah x