An American Adventure

I was lucky enough to spend my summer holidays, whilst at university working at a wonderful summer camp in Maine and this year the camp had a big reunion. Luckily a few things fell into place and I was able to go. It was lovely to meet up with old friends, reminisce and also enjoy the beautiful surroundings of camp with my little girl.

We flew into New York and had a few days to sightsee and shop. One of the places that I’d read about and wanted to visit was the high line park and it just happened to be a 2 minute walk from our hotel.

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It’s a wonderful city park which retains the character of the old railway but also has lots of interesting and quirky features as well as lush planting schemes to keep the visitor interested on their walk. It’s also wonderful to see the city from an elevated viewpoint.

One of the other places I wanted to visit was the Purl Soho as I’m often inspired by their tutorials and enjoy looking at their website. I was a little disappointed with their fabric selection which contained mostly liberty prints (fabrics I can easily find in the UK) and solids. My daughter on the other hand was smitten with their little dog soft toy. After carrying it gleefully around the shop we decided to buy the pattern and some fabric and make our own.

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Evie kept talking about her doggy on our travels and as soon as we got home she was keen to make a start on him.

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It’s been a joy to work on something together.

Work life balance

I haven’t blogged for a long, long while. If the truth be told I haven’t done a lot of stitching since February. I took on a temporary promotion for three months last December and the contract ended up being extended a few times. I enjoyed the opportunity to take on a new and challenging role but I struggled to balance the extra work with my home life and ultimately decided to look for something new. I have therefore resigned from my job and will be starting a PhD in October which I’m really excited about.

Having made this decision I’ve found I not only have some time to sew but also have the energy to work on a few things.

I wanted to make some table mats and a table cloth and found a scrappy mat tutorial from oh fransson.
I’ve started making them using my bark and branch fabric together with a scrap pack from Maze and Vale.

Can’t wait to finish them and make a matching tablecloth.

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February Goal

A friend of mine just had a baby girl so I’ve ordered some Sarah Jane Play on Parade fabric to make a quilt.

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I’m planning to include some pin wheels from this Moda Bakeshop Recipe to make it fun and interactive. My ALYoF goal this month is to get the quilt top pieced. I’m hoping the fabric arrives soon so I can get started. I’ve all ready started selecting fabric and cutting it out for my pin wheels.

Happy Mail Day

I had a lovely package arrive in the mail this week. I was lucky enough to win some Tula Pink Birds and Bees fat quarters from Sew Slow Society as part of the sew mama sew giveaway day just before Christmas.

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I love these fabrics and can’t wait to use them.

Little limes

I’ve had family staying for the holidays so I had to pack up my sewing room and haul out the guest bed. I didn’t mind too much as it was great to have all the family come to stay.

I did manage to get to my sewing machine to make a birthday gift. My friend’s birthday is on New Years Eve so the day before I made her an apron and matching tea towel. Her little girl likes to help her cook and dress the same, so I made her a matching apron. My friend’s parents have chickens on their farm so I thought the lovely lime green hens and duck fabric would be a good choice.

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Lovely Year of Finishes January Goal

I’m not really one for New Year’s resolutions but I would like to keep track of my projects and keep to a few deadlines. So I’ve decided to join in with a Lovely Year of Finishes.

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This tree skirt really should be under my tree. Unfortunately my little girl got chickenpox just before Christmas and so I just didn’t get around to finishing it. Once all the family descended on us I couldn’t get to my sewing machine. I’d really like to get it finished in January so that I can pack it away with the rest of the decorations ready to use next year.

2013 was a wonderful year for our family. After moving into our new house at the end of 2012 we spent the year settling in. I set up my very own sewing room and love each hour I spend there. My husband started a new job and although he’s away a lot I think it has made us appreciate the precious family time we do get. Our little girl has continued to grow up way too fast. She’s now two and chatters away, has moved into her big girl bed and continues to bring us joy every day.

Happy New Year and happy sewing everyone xxx

Making Christmas Finale

I’ve only abandoned one thing on my original list completely. My table runner will just have to wait until next year. But as items 7-12 weren’t even on my original list and I’ve finished those, as well as 5(ish) of my 6 original goals I’m incredibly pleased.

1. A cushion for my farther Christmas cross stitch – finished
2. At least 2 cooking aprons and pot holders (Christmas gifts)- 2 aprons finished
3. Tree skirt – I WILL Finish! But maybe at 23.30 on 24th
4. Table runner – gonna have to wait till next year
5. Felt ornaments – 3 finished
6. A couple of Lynette Anderson’s Crazy Christmas blocks – in progress will carry on in 2014
7. Christmas stockings – 3 finished
8. Egg cup cosies (gifts) – 2 finished
9. Papier-mâché ornaments – 2 finished
10. Mitten advent calendar – finished
11. Disappearing 9 patch quilt (gift) – finished
12. Wreath – finished

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I’ve loved looking at everything everyone else has been making and have felt very festive reading everyone’s posts. Thank you so much for the fun Making Christmas linkup.

Have a wonderful Christmas xxx

Santa Cushion

About 15 years ago I started a cross stitch of Santa delivering gifts in the snow. I finished most of it and then headed off to university. I didn’t do any stitching for quite a few years when I was studying and first working. My mum found it in some of my things a few years ago and gave it back to me. I needed to buy quite a few more threads to finish it and just never got around to it. When I was on maternity leave last year I finally finished it and it has sat on my sewing table for months because I couldn’t decide what to do with it. We’ll today I made it into a cushion.

Every Christmas my mum asks me if I’ve finished it and this year, at long last I’ll be able to tell her I have and show her the cushion I made it into.

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Today I’m linking up with Finish it Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts

Precious Le Challenge

I’m linking my advent garland of mittens up with Le Challenge. The inspiration this month was ‘precious’.

We have had a few tough Christmases since my daughter was born. My father was very ill and then passed away and all the family traditions we had somehow didn’t seem right without him. This year I made this advent garland and I know it’ll become a precious treasure that we get out each year with our daughter. I didn’t just want to fill it with chocolates and treats so I put some little reward cards in it like: ‘go to the panto with mummy and daddy’ , ‘make mince pies’ or ‘go and buy a tree’. This way I’m hoping we’ll make some precious memories and start some new Christmas traditions.

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