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Welcome!



Saturday, 19 August 2017

My hopes for a decent summer are diminishing by the day, but I am trying to make most of the odd couple of hours of sunshine here and there. We had a lot of rain this week, with very few sunny spells; even today, after waking up to rain (again), the sun is trying to come through, but the wind is chilly..
I managed some sewing time outside last weekend, to do little bit more on my blue cloth.

my bits of EPP transformed into 4 stars, 
2 stitched on already, with some old beads from my stash,




and 2 more stars yet to be appliqued 



And what is going on here?


Do you remember my green hexies a couple of posts back?

Well, the idea came from here,



but I want to do something more with the center panel; I have some ideas....

Despite the horrid summer, our fig, planted 3 years ago to cover a garage wall (and has done just that), is doing very well.



Some of the figs are already ripe (this variety doesn't go blue), so what to do with them?
As we don't particularly like eating them as they are; the figs which grow in our climate have very bland taste.
 I tried to use them to make some jam, and I thought a combination with apricots would be quite nice, adding lots of lemon juice.



The result was OK, but just that, not very exiting.
Will have to do some more research 😒.


©pleasureinstitching.blogspot.co.uk 2017

Friday, 11 August 2017

more EPP

After complaining about the weather in my previous post, the next morning the sun came out and we had a nice summer day.
My blue "play cloth" made its outing into the garden (so rare this summer).


I was just playing with some ideas.


Did that really happened? Because we are back indoors today, too cold to sit outside.
What a strange summer we are having!

Beautiful clematis "Polish Spirit", planted earlier this year, 
is doing well, despite the weather.


©pleasureinstitching.blogspot.co.uk  2017

Wednesday, 9 August 2017



Very little stitching was going on here, for more then one reason.
For the second week the weather is not "summer weather"; not only wet, but cold too. Some nights I wish we had our winter quilt back on our bed.
Our garden is very lush, but we have not been able to spend much time out there 😒.
And then there are other things which get in the way;
a routine breast cancer screening, a two weeks wait for the result, only to get a letter asking to come for a follow up screening. Oh dear, not again....
Another week gone before an appointment at the hospital - it is all that waiting .... I am sure that some of you know exactly what I am talking about. Another x-ray and ultrasound (thankfully no biopsy this time) - and given "all clear", hurrah!




I find it difficult to be "creative" when I am worried; I tried to read, but I found myself just browsing through my bookshelves. But the hands wanted to do SOMETHING.
An idea for a wall hanging in one the my books - the central panel is made out of green hexies; 
EPP - I can do that without too much thinking.


I was determined to use only my stash for this project, but when I finished the central panel, I realized that I haven't got a suitable large piece of fabric for the background.
Oh no, I had to go shopping! 😉
Luckily the wonderful one stop Midsomer Quilting shop is little under 10 miles from me, and always such pleasure to visit. Not only they pride themselves on having more then 3,000 fabrics in stock, but you can also help yourself to coffee (or tea, or whatever) and sit down and have a chat with fellow quilters (if you find the time, with all those fabrics around).
They are working on their on-line shopping website at the moment, 
but they promise to stay a friendly shop as well.

Well, it is never just that one piece of fabric, is it?😊 
But the rest should tie in as well.



I also made a nice cake for my DD's birthday recently, 
a new recipe for me, Persian Love Cake, from Yasmin Khan's "The Saffron Tales".




It is made with lots of almonds, cardamom, lemon juice and rose water. 
It is beautifully moist and keeps well (I made it a couple days ahead), decorated with lemon icing, pistachio nuts and dry rose petals (from our roses).
I will definitively make it again!



In between the rain we managed to finish the new raised flower bed.


Before it got too wet, I harvested some lavender from our front garden, and it is now drying in the summer house.
This lot should keep me in lavender bags this winter 😊.


 Just as well, because the rest of the lavender is now too wet to cut and has gone over.

I think that's all for now; 
I managed to catch up here and I will come to have a look what you are up to!


©pleasureinstitching.blogspot.co.uk 2017


Saturday, 15 July 2017

July so far



My summer sewing is very much influenced by the weather, because I do like to sew outside as much as I can. 
The last couple of weeks was very changeable. Some days it was too cold to sit outside and sew, or it was just too hot, but mostly very, very dry.  
So our garden gave a big sigh when we got some decent rain this week, be it just for a day.

























I find that summer is not a very good time for ambitious sewing projects, at least not for me.
So my "summer play quilt" came out at last. 
My old friends know this one already; for my new followers - this is a quilt made of various indigo dyed blocks and the plan is to fill each block with what ever I feel like - embroidery, applique, etc (there is no plan as such) and also incorporating some blocks from ladies from Tambani  and Afghanistan Inspiration projects. 
This is a truly summer project, it comes out only in the summer, to be stitched outside, which explains the rather slow progress.


At the moment I am "playing" with this small (and strange) block; not sure where it is going 😕






Another good one for "stitching in the garden" is this embroidery kit for a cushion from Nancy Nicholson, which comes in its own cloth bag. The bag itself is an embroidery project.

I bought it last year to take with me on holidays to Montenegro, but it was actually too hot to embroider, 
so it has now become a good project for the garden.












I have also finished (at last) the second border of St Germain quilt, which, although not forgotten, was "put aside" for a while, probably because I got little bored with the borders - too much needle turn applique! 
Two done, two to go....



During days too hot to hold a needle of  any kind, I have been catching up with some reading;
in fact quite a lot of it.
All of the books below I can recommend.



I picked "The Language  of Flowers" at the local library, it is about lots more then just flowers!

"The Gustav Sonata" was a birthday present - another good read.












I enjoyed "The Light Between Oceans" very much;
I found the film version so disappointing.
Read the book instead!















"The Handmaid's Tale" - dystopian (a new word for me too 😉) novel by Margaret Atwood, written in 1985.
It is now a great TV series, currently running on UK Channel 4.
I just had to get the book and read it before the TV series finishes.
Some variation in the book, and of course we don't yet know the TV ending, but I find the whole subject fascinating.
Margaret Atwood wrote a new foreword to this latest addition of the book. If anyone thinks that what happened in this story can't actually happen in reality, after reading this new introduction, they will think again.
Our Prime Minister, following recent terrorist attacks in UK, said that she is prepared to "tear up the Universal Declaration of Human Rights".
This book is just a hint of  possible consequences.............





Back to our garden - our plum tree decided that it really doesn't like growing in a small town garden, so sadly we had to give up on that one.
We decided to make another raised flower bed in its place.
This is very much a work in progress, with some of the new plants to be planted there.




I hope you are enjoying your weekend;
some drizzle here today, I hope it gets better on Sunday.


©pleasureinstitching.blogspot.co.uk 2017

Sunday, 25 June 2017

two gardens

What a change in weather! Wednesday was the last hot, hot day and the day after the temperature dropped by 10C at least; on Friday night the much wanted rain arrived. 
But of course - it is Glastonbury weekend!
Still, my garden is loving it!




On Friday we visited Stourhead - little disappointing;
 not very much colour here in June;
 the dry hot spell made it even drier.



Little colour here and there.






new arrivals



There is lots more colour in our garden; 
the waste water from the kitchen helped to keep it alive during the hot weather.















Lavender in the front of the house loved the heat,


and a new rose bed, planted last winter, is doing well too.
This is "Noble Anthony" .


The weather here is back to normal for June; not too warm, with some rain. 
Unfortunately not warm enough for stitching in the garden today, 
so it has been "baking Sunday",

supply of bread for the freezer



 and rather indulgent cookies.





My house smells of chocolate 😀.


Have a wonderful week!



©pleasureinstitching.blogspot.co.uk 2017


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