Celebrating 150 Years of Alice in Wonderland

I seem to have been on a roll making wallhangings recently. This latest one of White Rabbit was started when I got frustrated with my WW1 Commemorative quilt, which I did eventually finish.

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I have used a loose fabric collage technique which is then covered with a chiffon scarf and free machine embroidered down. It is embellished with a clock charm, seed beads and heart shaped buttons.

I have also recently made a White rabbit book cover of a similar design.

bok cover fb

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World War 1 Challenge Quilt

Our Cutting Edge group as been set a challenge to create a small quilt to commemorate the First World War … and after a couple of attempts I have finished mine.

MD quilt

It has been constructed by painting the background fabric, stained glass window shape and silouette image. The poppy at the top is machine appliqued and I have used transfer art paper to add the text. I have then free machine embroidered to quilt the piece. An Italian poppy button has been attached. All those taking part have been given one of these to add to their quilt.

The inspiration for the quilt came from collecting the social history of St Hilary, the village where I live in the Vale of Glamorgan. It commemorates those men from the village and from the Glamorgan Yeomanry who lost their lives in the First World War. The text on the quilt is taken from commemorative plaques in St Hilary church and from the war memorial on Stalling Down.

Ackland allen plaqueweb

Sgt Rees plaque church web

downs war memorial web

All the quilts that are made will be posted on the Cutting Edge blog and we hope to be able to display them in Cowbridge on remembrance Day

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Creating Fairy Shoes

Yesterday I learnt how to make fairy shoes! Not the most useful accessory you might say but it was a lovely day with friends creating tiny shoes for those little fairies that live at the bottom of the garden.

I have to say it was a challenge for me as I am not the best at hand sewing – using a machine is much quicker but I really couldn’t get my head round how I would sew them on the machine so it was a no brainer.

As ever, keen to have the perfect pair of shoes in a jiffy I started bonding felt to a batik fabric and then a gold lustre fabric. Initially it looked great but then I soon realised that the gold fabric had a mind of its own. It began to fray and then it started to come away from the felt!

And, in my enthusiasm I decided to use a bright pink cotton to sew them together which would have been a doddle for an expert needle woman but just highlighted to me that I need to practice my hand sewing!

The end result was one shoe – yet to be finished! I haven’t seen any one legged fairies around the garden yet but you never know – I might come across one, one day.

MD shoe

Anyway, today I decided that I needed to get my act together.

So….. initially I created a piece of fabric. It is made with lace, scraps of threads, fabrics and printed voiles. It has then been overrlaid with a rainbow organza and held down with free machine embroidery.

MD fabric

Once this process was complete I cut out and constructed a pair of shoes and I have to say it seemed a lot easier second time around. The only issue this time was that the gold fabric was no better than last time but I just had to have a gold lining to the shoe! And… some the organza started to fray. However, I managed to stem this with some clear glue that helps prevent fraying.

I am really pleased with the end result – I have even managed to make a pair! And I also managed to scallop the top of the shoe which I am really pleased with.

MD shoe web

The moral of the story? Patience and perseverance pays off!!!

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Finding UFOs

After having a massive clear up in the sewing room I have rediscovered quite a few UFO’s (unfinished objects). So, the plan is to complete them – I am always well intentioned but whether I will stick to the plan or get distracted is another thing!

This small quilt was inspired by a trip to Cardiff Museum last May. I initially went to the Peter Blake’s Under Milkwood exhibition and then visited the museum with textile friends to gather inspiration to make a fabric collage.

longing wales web

Another project aching to be finished is this one…. a quilt for my son who loves purple!

Chris quilt

Onwards and upwards as they say!

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A Tidy Sewing Room!

Over the last couple of weeks I have been putting new cupboards in my sewing room and how very tidy it looks!

MD sewing room

MD sewing room1

It is great to have (nearly) everything in one place and tidyily stashed away – but will it last????

Re-arranging everything hasn’t stopped me sewing. I have just completed an iron caddy – really useful as I often seem to be having to carry a warm iron home with me.

I just happened to find this piece of fabric in my stash and it was just the right size. It is very colourful but at least I am unlikley to misplace it!!!! I downloaded the pattern from here

ironing board caddy

I have also been out and about on a visit to London with good friend Hilary. We spent a day at the Spring Knit and Stitch show where we saw some beautiful quilts and found lots of bits and pieces to buy. We also went to the Fashion on the Ration exhibition at the Imperial War Museum which was very interesting and well worth the visit.

Whilst at the Knit & Stitch show we joined two workshops where we used bondaweb and scraps of fabric, threads, beads etc. I produced a little brooch at one of the workshops….

KS show brooch

and a landscape at the second workshop. I think this might end up as yet another book cover!

KS collage landscape

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Book Covers

Along with a few other people I have recently been busy making book covers.

I made this one to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Alice in Wonderland. I have used the loose fabric collage technique to make White Rabbit. I then cut out hearts on my Sissix machine which have then been arranged so that they make flowers. The whole piece has been free machine embroidered creating more hearts on the background fabric. It has then been decorated with clock and hand of card charms.

White Rabbit

Following a workshop in Ledbury with Angie Hughes I was inspired to create the two covers below.

I have used coloured foils for this one. It has then been covered with organza and it is held down with free machine embroidery stitches.

foil cover

For this one I have created a loose fabric collage landscape for the background. ‘Triangle’ trees have been added and the whole piece is covered with a pale coloured organza. A foil moon has been added along with sequin stars. I have machine embroidered and hand sewn beads on to the fabric.

tree book cver full view

Time to move on to something different now I think!

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Angie Hughes Workshop

On Saturday I visited Ledbury to attend a workshop run by Angie Hughes.

The workshop focused on the use of foils and glitters to create a Klimt themed piece of work.

After a short demonstration Angie let us loose with her wonderful array of foils and glitters on a trial piece. This is my first attempt using sequin waste as a stencil.

My scrap

I later turned this sample piece into a needlecase. It provided a great opportunity to try out some of the many embroidery stitches on my sewing machine. Before embroidering I covered the foiled design with strips of organza in various colours which has greatly enhanced the colour.

foil needlecase

Once we had the hang of things we prepared our fabric. We cut our design in bondaweb and applied it to the surface of the velvet.

bondaweb

Them we applied the foils and glitters onto the bondaweb.

my piece

All that was left to do when ths stage was completed was to machine embroider with metallic threads – as usual with me this is work in progress!!

But, Isobelle has finished hers and made it into a book cover!!!

Isobelles book cover

We were able to see Angie’s finished projects for inspiration though.

Angie1

Angie2

And, she also showed us some of her othe recent work – she is going to run two day workshops around these.

Angie new piece

Angie 3

Something to look forward to in the future I suspect!

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Mother Christmas

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Finishing Off For Christmas

Fundraising now over I have been busy completing off half finished projects ready for Christmas. These two reindeer sacks are for the little boys next door. I have filled them with a few goodies and they will receive them when they come over for tea in the BBQ Lodge on Thursday.

Fred and Alfie stcokings

We have been busy decorating the new BBQ lodge ready for Chrisrmas. I have made two lots of festive bunting …..

Nadolig Llawen bunting

and, some cushions. I love this hare cushion.

Hare cushion

And this fox cushion…..

fox cushion

I might even add this stocking that I have made from an old pair of denim jeans.

denim stocking

Finally, to round things off I received this lovely embroidered Christmas Card from a dear friend who knows how much I love Scottie Dogs. It is delightful and will continue to sit on the shelf well after the Christmas period!

Jans card

Looking forward to more sewing fun in the New Year!

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Frida Kahlo Cushion

Having been distracted over the last couple of weeks with the Cowbridge Stitch ‘n Bitch Festive Coffee Morning and Craft Sale and the addition of a BBQ Lodge in our garden I have finally found my way back to the sewing machine to complete some unfinished projects.

One of them is this floor cushion for someone who is for a fan of Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo

I love the fabric and have spent a ot of time fuss cutting the images out and appliqueing them on for maximum effect. I hope the receipient is as pleased with the end result as I am!

Now on to making sheep masks and costumes for an imminent nativity play! Watch this space.

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