Saturday, 20 July 2013


Today (well yesterday actually) it is my turn on the Blog Hop run by the lovely Beth of Plum and June.  Thank you so much Beth for running this.  Sorry my post is late.  I work in a school and yesterday was the end of term.  After half term we all say  'Hurray only 7 weeks until the summer holidays' but about 5 weeks later it is ' Oh no. only 2 weeks to go, how will I get it all done!'  The answer, unfortunately, is to work very long hours and not do any sewing :( 

Anyway, nice to meet you all. I have really enjoyed being part of this blog hop and meeting lots of lovely and talented bloggers.  My bloglovin list has gotten longer and longer and there has been a great email correspondence going on behind scenes. 

I guess you would like to know a bit about me?  I have sewn as long as I can remember.  I was given an old Singer sewing machine which I used to sit cross legged on the floor with with the foot pedal under my knee - until I got a bit to big to bend down that far!

When I was 18 I was given a Janome machine for my birthday.  This is the machine sewed on until February this year.  It had all of 6 different stitches!  This year I decided it was time to upgrade and I bought a reconditioned Husqvarna 870q.  It does about a million stitches (may be exaggerating) has a huge throat.  I can also move the needle sideways - never knew that was even possible before. 

Before I made quilts I made clothes, curtains, and lots of toys and dressing up outfits for my kids.  When we got married (16 years ago) I made my wedding dress, and the outfits for the page boy and little bridesmaid.  They carried toy bunnies as they were only 2 & 3 and I made matching outfits for them too.  My mum made her outfit, and the dress for my sister, who was my maid of honour.  My dress had over 5000 pearls on it, all hand sewn on.  It also had the buttons from my mum's wedding dress which she had made too.  Hubbie proposed to me on 10 January and we got married on 3 May - so I had 14 weeks to get all this done.  Clearly I work better with a deadline. (Oh, and no, I wasn't pregnant - just saw no point in waiting any longer - we'd been dating for 4 years!)

I took up quilting a couple of years ago.  After I made my first quilt (from Hubbie's shirts) I found the online blogging community and discovered all the beautiful things which could be made, and all the gorgeous fabric which could be bought!
I had really hoped to get my cubic hexagons finished for this post, but the heat and work put paid to the only thing I have finished is a little fabric basket made with a paper pieced pattern which I tested for the very talented Michelle of Factotum of Arts.  I used a Songbird fabric to match my owl.
I have seen lots of lovely pictures of peoples sewing rooms over the last few weeks so thought you might like to see mine.  I must issue a warning though - I work better in a mess.  I need to see things to inspire me.  I do tidy up sometimes - but not as often as I should.  So, if you don't like a mess you may want to look away now - but go down to the bottom of the post first to see the other people in the blog hop.

Still with me?  Well done.  I am also a papercrafter and have been running a club for the last 8 years teaching adults.  My room therefore needs to have papercrafting stuff (mostly in the bottom picture) as well as sewing stuff.  When I make something big I have to bring my machine out into the dining room, but I do manage little things in here.
Right, this is a very long post for me, so sorry about that.  Please feel free to have a look round while you are here. 
I am linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts for the Friday finish and with Plum and June for Lets Get Aquainted.  Here are the list of bloggers from last week (really sorry) and this week.
July 12
Karen @
Karen, {Novice} Quilter
Anne @ PlayCrafts
Rachel @ Let's Begin Sewing...
Jan @ Sew And Sow Farm
Anna @ Quilting Along The Grain
Cath @ Wombat Quilts
Sarah @ {no} hats in the house
Christen @ Love by Hand
Julie @ 627handworks

July 19
Karen @
Little Birdie Quilting Studio
Kathy @ Kwilty Pleasures
Katie @ Snuggle Up With A Dish From Karma
Alison @
Making Happyness  That's ME!
Ella and Nesta @ Ella & Nesta's Little Room
Adrienne @ Chezzetcook Modern Quilts
Nicole @ Modern Handcraft
Aylin @ AyliN-Nilya
Kelsey and Amanda @ Everyday Fray
Oh, and if you wondered about the blog name... when I make stuff it makes me happy and I spelt it with a Y because my Hubbies name is Symon and we always have to say 'Simon, with a Y'.
Thanks for visiting

Friday, 5 July 2013

Too Hot to Quilt

And that isn't something you hear too often in the UK!

This little owl is my only finish for the week.  I spotted him first here on Jackie's Blog and she got the pattern from here.  I fussy cut the fabric for his head and wings (the other side of the wings is the spotty fabric).  He is supposed to be a pincushion with a pocket for tools, but I can't bear to stick pins in him so he is sitting on my bedside table mostly - just making me smile.

I have made some progress on my cubic hexagons.  I tried to sew them together as they were in the last post, but that didn't work.  Trimming them was going to be a problem though as they really wanted to have sides of 5 and 3/8 inches.  Anyone got a template that size? No? Thought not. 

I ended up printing off a load of paper hexagons the right size and using them as templates.  I had to use lots as I kept slicing off a sliver of paper with the fabric.  Once I thought they had been sliced too much, I just started on another template.

I also used those templates to cut the white for the border.  As you can see it was a bit of a jigsaw!  Sewing it together was fun (not).  I am officially over hexagons - too many y seams by half.   However I am completely sold on trimming blocks now.  I have never done it before as I didn't want to waste fabric, but it is SO worth it.
Having carefully pieced that big white border, I will probably cut it right back now so that the hexies take centre stage.  I am thinking of a dark binding, grey or black?
 Does anyone else associate songs with their sewing?  All the time I have been sewing this I have had 'Just an Illusion'  by Imagination going round in my head (and yes, I am that old). 
Today is Friday so it is the next stop in the New Blogger blog hop hosted by Plum and June.  It has been so great to be part of this and get to know so many other quilters.  I have followed lots of famous bloggers for years but find it is much easier to build friendships with the newer bloggers.  Today's stars are:

Friday, July 5
Christa @
Christa Quilts!
Alyce @ Wonderland By Alyce
Anna @ The Crooked Banana
Rachel @ Sew Happily Ever After
Stephanie @
Quarter Incher
Shayla @ Sassafras Lane Designs
Caroline @ Carolines Craftiness
Lisa @ Hilltop House Creative Works

I'm linking up with Crazy Mom QuiltsMy Quilt Infatuation and Live a Colourful Life.
 Then I'm off to sit in the garden with a cold drink and the telly turned round to show Wimbledon.  Come on Djokovic! (edited to add: That worked, so Come on Murray!)

Monday, 1 July 2013

Cubic Hexagons - WIP

So, I'm still loving the Simply Colour Ombre jelly roll - might be because it hasn't got tidied up off my desk yet!  I  have been loving all the hexagons around at the moment and decided to have a play. 

These are hexagons, but they look like cubes!!! This really freaks my 9 year old son out - he doesn't like optical illusions.

I toyed with the idea of EPPing these diamonds, but I had the need to get this out of my head and into reality NOW so I machine pieced which was a lot easier than I thought.

I have just noticed that 2 of the cubes are the wrong way up. fortunately they aren't pieced yet so I can rearrange.  I am thinking white around it (rather than my fetching ikea mat!) to make it a rectangle to hang on the wall - just haven't worked out how to cut that yet - any suggestions?

Linking up with Lily's Quilts for the Fresh Sewing Day and the Small Blog Meet and also to Lets Get Aquainted which is at Quilts in the Queue this week.