Wednesday, 14 August 2019

Gifted Gorgeousness - August

It's Gifted Gorgeousness time - on the 15th of each month we share our latest gifts. Any gift given or received and any item made using fabric, threads, buttons, ribbon, chart, backing fabric that has been gifted is also allowed in our GG posts. 

This great idea is hosted each month by the lovely Jo at Serendipitous Stitching,  if you visit her blog you'll find the links to everyone's Gifted Gorgeousness posts. 

I have a few things this month to share, the first items are very special. Our super daughter and her boyfriend have moved into a new flat, no more sharing, this is just for them. 

As a new home gift I stitched them a zodiac coaster each and we bought them matching mugs. They were delighted with them. The designs were in an old magazine and matched the mugs perfectly. 

Zodiac coasters 
Coasters and matching mugs.
 Our lovely Philippa and her boyfriend Michael
As I was stitching for them I also made our son a coaster. This one I designed myself. He organises and runs game nights for his friends, they play Dungeons and Dragons. He's the Dungeon Master!

He loved his D & D coaster 
A while ago I stitched this for Hubby's sister who will be 60 in October. She lives in Michigan so we gave her her card and gifts when she visited the UK in June. She couldn't resist opening them which is why I can share the photo now.

Gift for my sister-in-law 
My final gift this month is a rose I bought for my Mum to say thank you for all her help whilst I recovered from my fall. It's a pink patio rose called 'thank you and I found the perfect colour matching pot at the garden centre.

Thank you patio rose
It's great to at last be able to show the gifts I made, there are a couple more but they will have to wait until next GG as I haven't given them yet.

Friday, 9 August 2019

Summer Postcard Blog Hop

I've received a beautiful postcard from Katie as part of Jo's Summer Postcard Blog Hop. It's a lovely design, beautiful stitching too.

Here's Katie's postcard and message.


Hello Friend. 

Great Smoky Mountains is a beautiful place to visit in the United State of America. One city in particular is Gatlinburg, Tennessee. 

My husband and I was celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary in 2011 and we rented a cabin in the mountains. It was a wonderful vacation. 

There is a stitching store in Pigeon Forge a very nearby town and I bought this pattern to remember the trip. 

Katie from Ft Wayne, Indiana

Thanks Katie for your lovely postcard.

You can hop around everyone's blog to see the othet postcard that have been received.

Jump over to Katie's at http://dragonsluver.blogspot.com

and don't forget to visit Jo's blog too http://www.serendipitousstitching.blogspot.co.uk

Happy Summer Postcard Hopping!




Friday, 2 August 2019

Summer Exchange with Needlecraft Haven

Yesterday was Opening Day for Needlecraft  Haven's Summer Exchange.  Those members who signed up had to choose between a dog or cat theme - I chose dog. 

We had to then stitch a pin cushion for our partner, and send it with a card signed 'love from everyone at Needlecraft Haven' as it was a secret exchange. That said with just four of us signing up I think we all knew who was sending to who, obviously I did as I organised the exchange hee hee

I was sending to Mary who chose a dog theme and Mary was sending to me ... I also wanted a dog themed pin cushion. I decided to stitch Lizzie Kate's 'dog leave paw prints' chart and made a pin cushion using an old Pandora charm box. I loved the design and planned to stitch it for myself when I get a chance.

I was absolutely delighted when I opened my parcel yesterday morning .... Mary had stitched me the same design. I absolutely love it. She has made a box finish pin cushion which will be perfect when I'm using the sewing machine ... I have quite a bit of machine sewing to do soon too. 

My gorgeous pin cushion from Mary
As well as the pin cushion Mary also sent three doggy charms, some beautiful fabric and a wheel of pins. Thank you Mary for a super exchange parcel.

My Summer Exchange from Mary
As I said I stitched the same design but I stitched it over one so it would fit on top of the small box. I couldn't find a charm small enough for the bone so had to stitch one instead. Inside I lined the box with some dog fabric and made a soft cushion for pins using felt and wadding. I have not made one of these before, it turned out really well and I might make one for myself (using a different design) for when I'm hand sewing as I use less pins than when machine sewing. 

I found a small dog cross stitch kit in my stash so added it to Mary's Exchange parcel and luckily I found a dog card in my card box. I've really enjoyed taking part in this year's Needlecraft Haven Summer Exchange. 

The top of the box pin cushion I made for Mary
Mary's pin cushion box from the side

Inside the box
The Summer Exchange Parcel I sent to Mary

For Gifted Gorgeousness July I had nothing to share so offered two charts as gifts - my lovely Hubby has picked the winners ....... drum roll ......

Shepherd's Bush Be Warm was won by Ariadne 

Lizzie Kate's One Hundred Years was won by Rachel 

I'll be emailing you both and popping the charts in the post soon - congratulations.

This month I will have a few gifts to share, two special ones as yesterday our daughter and her boyfriend moved into a new flat .... no more sharing with others .... and I have stitched them a little something sssshhhhh!

Sunday, 28 July 2019

It's been HOT

We've had some very hot weather here in the UK over the last week, saying that yesterday and today it's been pouring down. 

Last week we had two days over 30 degrees, one day reaching 34 - our summers are usually mid to high 20s. It was so humid too, even with our fan on everywhere felt airless. 

Today with the rain the temperature is 14 degrees, that's more than half of Thursday's high, it feels lovely to be cool again ! 

A bonus is I got to use my 'hot' colours on my Temperature Quilts. I use the highest day temperature and lowest night temperature. The yellow on the night quilt is 15-19 degrees, that was the lowest so no wonder we struggled to sleep!

Temperature Quilt  - day
Temperature Quilt  - night
Our lounge and conservatory are nearly finished - the new laminate has been fitted and our lovely new table and chairs have arrived. We've ordered new sofas, they are the same dark colour but a slightly different style. We have new lights too which make such a difference.

Our new table and chairs
All the units are back, new carpet and new sofas coming soon
As we were going through stuff I found these two photos - do you think it's the same little girl?

The black and white photo is older .... it's me aged about 4 or 5 ..... the colour photo is our daughter Philippa when she was about 2 or 3

We are so alike in looks and mannerisms, people are always saying how alike we are but I was very surprised by these photos .... maybe because we are similar age in them.

No gardening today so it must be stitching time, thank you for popping by to read my news x x

Saturday, 20 July 2019

Lovely warm colours

I've updated my day Temperature Quilt, we've have continuous warm weather the last week so lovely yellow and orange wuth one day over 25 degrees so a touch of red!

Temperature Quilt - day
My night Quilt has come to a mini halt - I have run out of DMC 502. No worries I thought, there will be a spare in my stash.... so Hubby lifted out my threads box and in the DMC 5** bag was ...

500   501   503   504 

..... but no 502. So unfortunately I will have to pop to the art shop ;-)

Temperature Quilt - night - paused!
Thank you to everyone who entered my gift away on my Gifted Gorgeousness July post .... I'll leave it open until  Friday 26th - good luck!

Monday, 15 July 2019

Gifted Gorgeousness July

Another month has gone by and although I have been stitching, it's stitching for gifts so I can't share just yet ....... therefore this months GG is from me to you!

I have two charts to gift - let me know in your comment which draw you would like to be entered into, you can be in both. My gift-away is open to everyone.

If you link my giveaway on your page and send me an email to let me know I will enter you twice for your chosen chart or both.

Be Warm - Shepherd's Bush
including buttons
One Hundred Yesrs - Lizzie Kate
Gifted Gorgeouness is hosted by the lovely Jo at Serendipitous Stitching. The 15th of each month we post about any item we have gifted or been gifted or have used that was once gifted. Jo has a link page each month for us to visit each other's blog and our blogs are linked to Jo's. It's lovely to read about everyone's gifts.

Good luck in my gift-away, happy GG blog visiting.... next month I'll be able to share the gifts I've been working on.

Tuesday, 9 July 2019

June and July framed

I have changed my The Drawn Thread monthly designs from box finished to just the fabric stiffened with interfacing so I can put them in a frame each month

You can read about my changes in this post from August last year. The frame I had made has suited all months, I think July completes the year.

I forgot to share June so here's a photo of both June and July in the frame.



I have managed to keep up with my Temperature Quilt, the colours are a little darker again now we're home, although our daytime temperatures are quite good.

Temperature Quilt - day
Temperature Quilt - night
My current stitching is a few gifts and an exchange so I cannot share..... I cannot stitch much either at the moment as we are freshening the lounge.

Over the last two years it's taken a bashing with us having to sleep/live in the one room and me wheeling around. The carpet has moved and the laminate flooring is not looking so good, we can't complain as it's over 20 years old.

So we're having a new carpet (same colour)  new laminate flooring in the conservatory and giving the lounge a lick of paint. It's a big job as our wall units need emptying, moving and the stuff put back. We're doing the lounge first with everything in the conservatory then vica versa, all good fun.

Yesterday and today have been preparation days, stuff to the tip and the charity shop (we're having a new dining table), and rubbing down ready for painting tomorrow.... what a job!

Our four large units
stacked in the conservatory 
Dust sheets everywhere 
Watching a blurry Wimbledon
Our daughter is at Wimbledon today, she has Centre Court tickets .... I've been trying to spot her on tv which is nigh impossible anyway made harder by the dust sheet.

Hopefully we'll be hoovered up soon and can enjoy a glass of wine with a Chinese takeaway (we're both too tired to cook).

Tuesday, 2 July 2019

July already!

June passed by so quickly, it was a very busy month for us with family birthdays and our anniversary celebrations. Hubby and I had a super time on our cruise - you can see more photos and read about our trip in my travel blog - Aimetu's



My stitching this month has been for Needlecraft Haven's Summer Exchange and a few gifts so unfortunately I cannot share much this post.

A quick word about Needlecraft Haven Forum - we are a small friendly group of stitchers, knitters, card makers, quilters and general crafters. To prevent spam posts and keep our forum safe it is a closed Group BUT membership is free and it's very easy to join.

We've had quite a few new members lately but sadly they haven't posted so after 4 weeks their membership has lapsed. Maybe they just wanted to have a look .... if you join please post so we can chat and share your crafting too .... we have members in the UK, USA and Australia ... here's the sign up link




I have however completed my Temperature Quilt to the end of June .... we had an unusually hot day here in central UK on the 29th, it was a surprise to use my hottest colour. 

It wasn't a surprise to use the hot colours on our cruise, we expected the Mediterranean days to be high and the evenings warm .... thank goodness the cabin had air con, it was quite humid on the balcony.

Day Temperature Quilt 
Night Temperature Quilt 
My stitching plans for July are to finish the gifts, finish and make up the Summer Exchange gift, keep up with my TQ and hopefully do a few hardanger pieces for my church tree .... no holidays planned, although we might pop to Cardiff to visit our daughter, so there should be plenty of stitching time 🙂


Saturday, 15 June 2019

Gifted Gorgeousness - June

It's a very special Gifted Gorgeousness this month - huge thanks for Jo for allowing my May post about my Mum's Afternoon Tea for her 80th birthday.

Her actual birthday was 31st May but as she was on a cruise to Canada I had to give her gift to my stepdad to smuggle on-board and keep safe until the day. I don't do very much quilting or machine sewing but as my Mum does I decided to make her a project pocket for taking away on her travels.

I stitched Jardin Privé design Ciseaux et Bobines (scissors and bobbins) which I thought was perfect for Mum as she makes quilts. Using elements of the design I also stitched a covering for a tape measure, a needlecase and a bag for scissors. Because Mum was travelling and scissors can be restricted I bought her a Clover cutter and made a stand using a bobbin.

I was very nervous putting the fabrics together and especially making the project pocket as I have trouble working out where to stitch when things have to be turned .... inside out is something I find tricky.

Mum opened her gift on board ship before spending her birthday in Corner Brook, Canada. I haven't seen her yet as they have only just arrived home but she did send a message to say how lovely the gift was.

Mum's complete 80th birthday gift  - a Project Pocket for her travels
Needlecase
Needlecase inside
Tape measure
Clover cutter, bobbin and scissor bag
The front of Mum's Project Pocket
The back of Mum's Project Pocket
The inside of the Project Pocket
Gifted Gorgeousness is hosted by Jo at Serendipitous Stitching - on the 15th of every month we post about any item we have either gifted or had gifted or have used that was once gifted. Our posts are linked to Jo's blog so we can see each other's Gifted Gorgeousnesses. Thanks Jo for hosting this great blog link each month, and once again many thanks for allowing Mum's party for GG-May.



Thursday, 13 June 2019

Flaming June

Well it isn't 😂

The first of June was glorious and I moved up a colour on my Temperature Quilt, however since then it's cooled down and has been raining everyday.

Here's my progress to 7th June, I'll be stitching this week's weather tomorrow as Friday is check in day on Needlecraft Haven.

Just one day of hot weather on my Day Quilt
The temperature overnight has stayed
the same for a few weeks
Whenever she visits our daughter brings flowers, as I do when visiting her in Cardiff. On her latest trip she brought some beautiful lillies, I love the deep colour. The flowers are so huge I've had to put them where they can't touch anything else.
Gorgeous lillies
Although it's midweek our friends came for dinner. We're all retired but our, and our friend's, weekends seem to be always busy. I made salmon mousse for our starters, our main was mussels with French fries and it was salted caramel ice cream with fresh fruit for dessert. A lovely light meal for a Wednesday night.

Hubby found some beautiful napkins in Dunelm, in the sale at 63p. They look lovely, I'd like to get some more if we go in store again.

Perfect napkins
I'll be blogging again soon as the 15th is Gifted Gorgeousness time with Jo from Serendipitous Stitching and I have a very special gift to share this month.


Monday, 10 June 2019

Another three for church

I'm not quite on track with my stitching, not behind just uncertain of which projects I have and what I should be working on. I guess I need an afternoon of stash sorting ! 

I did find some hardanger pieces that were half completed for a project I'm not doing anymore. The fabric is very soft but they have stiffened up with a little ironing starch.

I finished them with wrapped bars, eyelets and a spider's web centre. The edging was the trickiest, I have used diagonal blanket stitch which I think looks ok. There are two more to do which will make another five for my church tree.

Three more hardanger pieces for church 
It's been a busy weekend: Hubby's sister and husband are over from USA visiting my Mother-in-law who has just turned 83. Yesterday we had Sunday Lunch at a local pub, 11 of  us all together. It was lovely to meet up as we don't see each other very often.

Our daughter and boyfriend came up from Cardiff for the weekend so they could make the lunch and as it's our 30th Wedding Anniversary soon we went out for a meal on Saturday night. The five of us survived a very bumpy taxi ride down country lanes to a superb restaurant - Hercules Revived. 

When we got married it was Hubby's sister's husband who was our best man. They lived in Germany at the time and as a thank you we took them to this restaurant a few days before the wedding. It was a bit different in 1989 and since then it closed down and re-opened - hence the name.

It was lovely being all together; Hubby, me, son, daughter and her boyfriend. We had a superb meal, my pate was so tasty and my pork just melted. There was a good selection of wine too. The weather brightened up so we were able to sit in the garden overlooking the Leicestershire countryside for a pre-dinner drink - memories made :-)

A super evening - I love family time 
Well I best go and sort my stash and see what projects are calling. I have remembered to send Jo a photo for the Summer Blog Hop - you can find the details on her blog Serendipitous Stitching if you would like to take part too (it' at the end of her post)


Wednesday, 29 May 2019

May update

May has been a busy month with planning and baking for Mum's birthday and our tour of Scotland. I posted about the birthday surprise in my GG May (thanks Jo 😉) - if you want to read about, and see the photos of, our Scottish adventures (4 posts ) pop over to my other blog 


I didn't do any stitching whilst away, the main reason being that the light in hotel and guest house rooms is so poor. I think they focus on 'soft lighting for a good night's sleep' but in some rooms even reading was tricky.

I recorded the highest day temperature and lowest night temperature in all the places we stayed and now we're home with good light I have updated both my Temperature Quilts to 23rd May. I'm really enjoying these, the colour changes are amazing, I love it when the temperatures rise. 

Day Quilt
Night Quilt
It's always a worry when we go away about our garden. We only have pots and they need watering every day. With Mum away too we had to come up with a plan ... so we bought a water sprinkler and timer for the outside tap. It came on once a day and although we had to do some dead leafing, weed clearing and general pruning the pots survived.

Hubby and I spent a day working on it, dodging the showers. I'm so pleased with how it looks, it's the first proper year after all the changes and I just love sitting outside with my coffee. 

We have a new clematis to climb the fence round the clock
I've added some pots to the edge
of the gazebo
I love the contrast of the red acer leaves and the greenery,
we now have a fig growing behind the chairs.
I love the exchanges we do at Needlecraft Haven, this year we have already had a Valentine's Exchange and an Easter Exchange. It's time for our Summer Exchange which is to make a pin cushion on the theme of either cats or dogs - at the moment it is still sign up time but our partners will be announced soon so I'll know which theme to stitch.

Huge apologies to everyone as I haven't had time to read any blogs for quite a while. I plan to spend the next few coffee breaks in Blogland catching up with all the news.