Thursday, 29 July 2010

1 sleep left.

Diane popped round today with her R.R.C. Due to life being a bit hectic, it was decided to have two months to turn the fabric into a vessel. This fabric was made by Margaret, quilted by Nickie, cut up and stitched into a different shape by Debbie, made into a vessel by Diane and now I have to embellish it. I got the idea from a Quilting Arts article earlier in the year . At the beginning of September we will have a get together to give the completed vessel back to its owner. I wonder how the others are getting on, I haven't seen or heard that they have swapped yet.
Talking of Q.A., I got the latest copy when I went to Craft Arena delivering posters for the F.E.T exhibition, I also managed to get the black velvet ribbon I needed for my' butterfly.' Denise is very kindly donating the magazine 'Stitch' to our group of Y.E.

Sue from Tylers Patch persuaded me (I didn't need a lot! LOL) to look at the handmade Fimo buttons and beads in the shop next door to her. I just couldn't resist these beads and pencil, very reasonable too.

Today's baking is Scrumptious Slice to take away on holiday. I just love this, marzipan, apricots, coconut and chocolate in flaky pastry. Another very quick and easy recipe if anyone wants, just forget about the diet!

This evening, after many interruption's, I have made for a friend but I can't post a picture yet as she reads this blog.

I've cleaned the house, filled the fridge and freezer for my son and his friends , the packing is all done ready for the off tomorrow.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

She's bugging me!

The day started off with making yet ANOTHER strawberry and mascarpone slice. A staff get together to celebrate some birthdays. I don't think I have had such a long 'lunch' I didn't get home until 7.30! I have managed to do a fair bit to my imaginary insect, I have decided it will be a 'Monarch Butterfly' very loosely based on Queen Elizabeth 1, I loved studying this period of history when I was at school. I have used the picture above depicting the Spanish Armada, for my colour scheme.

Due to the insect shape, she is quite hard to take a photo of.

I have still got a lot more flowers and pearls to sew on to the body. I hope to start work on the wings tomorrow, but I think that might be pushing it a bit, as I really need to start the holiday packing. I have also got to go to Barleylands as I have some posters for our exhibition.

( The base fabric for the body is felt, gold lame and white crystal organza, machine stitched in gold.)

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

A rareity.

For once I didn't have to go out or provide a taxi service, so once I had done some chores it was time to hit my playroom.
I started off by making 3 signature's for a holiday journal to do while in Cornwall, I also made 2 tags to put in when I know where I want them to go. The Cornish pebble paper I bought 4 years ago when I was last in Cornwall, I knew it would come in handy one day!
So I can carry on working on the journal during the evenings, I have packed a large pencil case with useful?? bits.
We will be coming home early from our holiday, as it is going to be Tony's funeral next Friday, and we cant miss that.
I have also done some work to my imaginary insect that I have to make for the FET exhibition. I started it a little while ago, but have yet to make enough progress to make it worthwhile posting a photo of it.
A thank you to everyone who has posted messages regarding Hubby's op, it was a minor op under a local to remove some skin cancer, and quite a small job compared to last time when the cancer was very much larger and he had to have a skin graft too.

Monday, 26 July 2010

Here is the wall hanging so far, I have washed the water soluble fabric out and I have now started embellishing it. When that is completed I will cut voids between the flowers with scissors, Pauline has banned burning and melting for this project. You will have to wait some time for the next photo, to have something worth showing.
Hubby's op went very well, we were only at the hospital an hour and a half, I didn't get as much stitching done as I had hoped, as the lighting in the waiting room was terrible.

Ready for the next step.

A lovely start to the day, breakfast at a friends house. It was to raise funds for breast cancer, for a donation it was croissants, sausages in french stick and danish pastries. I have been busy stitching this so that I can dissolve the water soluble tonight.( I had to almost lie on the floor to get it all in the picture!) Hubby has the hospital to have a minor op on his head and I need some hand stitching. I will then be taking this away to work on while on my holiday to Cornwall.

Sunday, 25 July 2010


Not all the FET members could make the 2nd visit to Maldon to view the Maeldune Centre, (Margaret and I gave a guided tour to some in May). Pauline was very happy with the venue, much bigger than she had remembered it to be. It all so gave me another chance to view the exhibition by Octopus. We had morning coffee and lunch in this lovely restaurant close by.

When I got home, there was just time to decorate the strawberry and mascapone tart before going to Chris's for the evening.

My son Rhodri and his girlfriend are in Milton Keynes for the Prodigy concert.

Friday, 23 July 2010

Meals on wheels.

Tomorrow the F.E.T group are meeting at Maldon to view the venue for our exhibition in September and view the Octopus exhibition.
Afterwards we are going to visit Chris, Tony's wife. Whenever I have been there, it has been like Joe's cafe, she is always cooking for a crowd. So for a change, I am taking a meal to her. I have spent this evening cooking two lasagne's, a special cake for Chris, as the other night she said that she had never had a birthday cake, and would like a fruit cake with marzipan. I have used a Simnel cake recipe for her.

I have also made the strawberry and mascapone tart again. The chocolate is deliberately missing from one section as Chris doesn't like chocolate. I just hope I have made enough food, as we don't know who is turning up tomorrow to visit her.As for my textile work, I have only got the last quarter of machine stitching my panel, but I wont be doing any tomorrow.

Update on ALQS4

When I eventually got home from clothes shopping for my fussy teenage daughter, there was a parcel on my door mat. I couldn't think what it could be. To my astonishment it was my quilt from the swap, organised by Kate.
It is stunning, I have taken several photos for you all to see the different quilting patterns that have been used. My quilt has been made by Ildiko, from Budapest. She has some lovely images on her blog, but it is written in Hungarian and I haven't found the translator button yet. It certainly wasn't snail mail!

Todays bargain.

It is Kezzy's first day of the school holiday and she wanted some new clothes for our holiday. After dragging me round lots of very trendy shops to try and find the right shoes and shorts, I dragged her to Primark to look at the jewellery.
These necklaces were £1 each, so I shall be deconstructing them over the weekend.

Thursday, 22 July 2010

Ice Resin day 2

What was supposed to be a quick dash to Craft Arena, ended up being all morning-lovely. Denise had a college friend in so they could get some of their C&G work done. I held them up, as we did far too much talking!
The resin set on my sheer flowers making them pliable, but with a completely different handle to the fabric. The resin has changed the colour of the stitching on the left flower, it was lime green, and the heart shapes on the yellow flower was very purple. Maybe it was applied to thickly, will have to do some more experiments
I am now going to do some stitching on it, hopefully tomorrow, so will keep you posted. One of my end of year presents from one of my little cherubs, was a voucher for Craft Arena. I wanted to buy something special, and I have! the new Jane Dunnewold book:0)
I am going to take this to read on my holiday to Cornwall.

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

S l o w l y

I was hoping that I would be further a long with this by now, but life has a way of giving you hiccups! I am now just over half way.

Sad news

We got the phone call we had been waiting for all day, early this evening. Our friend Tony( on the left) and Best Man when we got married 10 years ago, died at 6 pm.
I am so glad that we changed our plans and visited him last night.

Another food experiment.

Just as I was about to start stitching, my daughter and grandsons came round:0) . Josh wanted some help making four cards for the teachers at school. Zac wanted to help too! The bread pudding is cooked and ready to go to Chris.

As I had the oven on, I decided to try another new recipe. Strawberry and mascarpone tart (melted chocolate on the top), I preferred this to the Rocky Road cheesecake, and I shall be making this to take along to the works get together next week. If anyone wants the recipe(its very quick and easy) I am happy to send it to you.

While my bread is soaking ready to make a bread pudding, I thought I would quickly do a posting about today.
Denise of Craft Arena is doing her Diploma in Embroidery, and she has to make a vessel. I love making vessels, so I said I was happy to go along for a couple of hours to see what we could come up with. Denise already had her design source, so it was time to play. Stitching an image that had been printed on abbacca tissue.

Then out cam the paints.

Then the exciting bit, the Ice Resin.

Having coated the different experimental bits with the resin, we have to wait until tomorrow to see the results-can't wait!!!!
While we were playing/exchanging ideas, Miriam and Sheila both of Chelmsford Embroiderers' Guild, happened to pop in.
They enjoyed looking at the exhibition in the new gallery and then....

in spite of her good intentions, Miriam ended up spending her money. :0)


After a very successful YE meeting to plan what and when we are going to do with our girls, I made a farmhouse cake to take up to our friend Chris, Tony's wife. We had a phone call early yesterday morning to say he had just days left.
After visiting Tony in a beautiful Hospice, we went to see Chris and I have been asked to make her some more cakes for all her many visitors she is having. Off to Asda to get more flour and eggs.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

ALQS4 on its way!

The quilt is rolled in bubble wrap inside a plastic carrier bag, then a layer of brown paper ready for its very long journey. I hope it gets there safely.
Address hidden so the recipient wont know she's getting my quilt.

Monday, 19 July 2010

Cas Holmes

A good night was had by all as we listened to Cas Holmes talk us through the slides of her inspiring work. Cas has a book coming out in September and she had a copy for us to look through. I shall be placing my order tomorrow.
I was lucky enough to win one of the raffle prizes tonight. Wendy, a member of O2 group puts them together fr us, and they are a work of art in themselves. My prize contains pieces of silk, net, sparkly fabric, sari ribbons, fine cord, feathers and a packet of sequins hidden deep inside.
Tomorrow I have to go to Craft Arena :0), as I have to meet Libby, Wendy and Diane to plan next years YE.

Embroiderers' Guild tonight.

I have got the missing address now, so I can now parcel up my ALQS4, ready for posting tomorrow.
Sorted out the study and checked (again) I have all the paperwork sorted for tonight's EG meeting. We have Cas Holmes coming to give the talk. I am really looking forward to this as Libby went on a course with her not very long ago and was inspired by her workshop.

Sunday, 18 July 2010

I have just found to whom I have to send my ALQS4 piece, just need the address now. I wonder which one I will receive, we can find out from Kate, but I think I will try and be patient and wait for the surprise.
Alan went to visit our friend Tony in hospital this afternoon. Tomorrow they are moving him into a hospice. Kezzy was kept busy grooming their horses and playing with their dogs.
I had a tidy up in my play room and can actually see the work surface, though it won't be clear for long. I have been fiddling with paper, craft vilene, sheers and gesso and have nothing to show for it yet!

Saturday, 17 July 2010

In butterfly mode.

I have been flitting from one job to another and not got a lot to show for it apart from my lemon and mustard seed pickle. These two jars are in the larder and another is already in the fridge ready to have with cheese and crackers for lunch tomorrow. The sooner I get all the machine stitching done, the easier it will be to take a photo. I am about a third of the way now with adding the additional colour.

Friday, 16 July 2010


One of the many pleasures of having time off work, is having time to experiment in the kitchen with new recipes. For some time now, I have wanted to make the recipe I had found for Rocky Road Cheesecake. ( made with an Oreo biscuit base) Well, this afternoon I made it and it had hardly been in the fridge 5 minute when S.I.L came round and decided to be chief taster. Another dessert that will be appearing regularly in this household, as hubby also really enjoyed it too. Lemon and mustard seed pickle is marinating overnight ready to cook tomorrow. Yesterday afternoon, I decided on a whim, to go to Maldon to see the exhibition by Octopus. I had a lovely time admiring all their work and talking to Liz. On the way back to the car, I bumped into a friend I haven't seen for a couple of years but had to dash because parking time was nearly up, so another trip to Maldon is on the cards to meet up for lunch and a good old natter.

A little bit of stitching has taken place on the wall hanging but, as usual not as much as I had hoped for. Must try harder- just like it used to say on my school reports!

Look what I found today

Going round the Charity shops looking for interesting books, I found this one by Maggie Grey and Valerie Campbell-Harding, for just £1. I had to buy it because even though I have got a copy, I am sure someone at EG will want it on Monday night.


Doing a bit of blog hopping, I found this giveaway. I would love to own him.

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

I have been wearing my secretary hat for a fair bit of time today. First off was sorting out E.G. letters, magazines etc., and then the weary business of my 'Dodgy Dealer'.
Prepare for a rant:- I spent ages on the phone to the debt collector and they can not go any further unless I part with a lot of money to take him to Court. Having already tried the Small Claims Court and not got anywhere, I don't see what can be achieved by going back and repeating the process, I have already got a C.C.J against him, which he was supposed to have paid last February!! This man has had the granite and money for two years now and there seems no way of getting it sorted out. So far I have tried the Office of Fair Trading, the Police, the Courts and a Debt Collector, all to no avail.
Anyway, when I eventually calmed down, I did yet more machine stitching. I have now done the basic outline on all the flowers, time to start adding additional colour.
I was going to Bluewater tomorrow with my friend from work for lunch and girly shopping, but it has been cancelled at the last moment, as one of my friends needs emergency dental treatment.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

On and on.

It is surprising how much you can get done with an extra hour to play. I have only about 20" left to complete on the first round of machine stitching.

Monday, 12 July 2010

Another find.

As I was in Billericay again today, I visited another charity shop, ( we have quite a few of them and restaurants) and found this lovely book. I just had to buy it for the pictures, although there is some very nice poetry in there as an added bonus. I have several books of Gordon Beningfield's work.

I love pictures of bare trees in the winter.

I know Carolyn would enjoy this picture below as much as I do.

When I got home there was a lovely surprise from JP, a handmade card and some of her lovely hand dyed silks and fibres to use with my embellishing machine. Thank you so much JP.

I am having a bit more time in my play room tonight as Alan has gone to visit his friend Tony in hospital. He had recovered from lung cancer and was back at work when he became ill again. After lots of tests he has been diagnosed with Neuro Neoplastic. Last week we were told he could last a year, but today he has taken a turn for the worse and it could only be weeks.