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I am glad that you have found my blog and I hope you will take few minutes to explore.
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Saturday, 25 February 2017

snowdrops - what you didn't know (nor did I)

Our small town celebrated its first Snowdrop Festival last week. 
Organized by the local Horticultural Society, the preparations started last year; hundreds of snowdrop bulbs were planted by volunteers on the main roundabout on the approach to the town, and they are all showing their beauty now.
By next spring they will be more established and there will be even more of them.

Why? Because there is a little know connection to the town of Shepton Mallet:

The main part of the festival took part through the High Street, which was decorated with snowdrops in various forms and with stalls selling snowdrop plants; there were workshops for children making drawings and paper snowdrops. Many High Street shops took part too, decorating their windows with snowdrop displays.

I forgot to take my camera, so I borrowed some pictures from Creative Somerset blog and the Festival Facebook.


Do pop over to the blog  here, to see Helen's wonderful picture, mixed media artwork called "Dancing Snowdrops", displayed (picture above) in the window of One Craft Gallery in the High Street.

What else have I been up to this past week?

It has been a bad last few days as far as the weather was concerned, although our part of the world seemed to have the easiest time. Definitively time to hibernate.

Seville oranges, which had been in my fridge since January, needed to be processed, so time for marmalade.
My way of making an orange marmalade is very simple - cook the oranges, chop it all up and boil with sugar. 


Now we can look forward to that zingy freshness on the toast, with fresh coffee, sitting outside in our little garden, on a warm summer morning (yes, I am an optimist 😀).

Chateau Hexagon - I finished the gardens some time ago,

  and last night I finished the chateau also.
It is now waiting to be put together.

The Quilters Patch quilt - I made a start -
block no 1, the "Cosmos block".

Today is a really dull and wet day.
Good day to be in the kitchen and do some baking -  
this is one of my favourite biscuit recipes - Ottolenghi's white chocolate and cranberries.

I wish you all a wonderful Sunday!

© 2017

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Hygge - Scheepjes CAL 2017

Isn't this beautiful? 

This is a new CAL by Scheepjes of Holland. How can anyone resist this stunning design?

I could not, anyway 😉. 
The whole CAL lasts 14 weeks, instructions being published each week on their website and Facebook.
Judging by their FB page, the interest is huge.
I came across it by chance on Sunday, at the end of the first week, thought about for a while ( a very short while) and then started browsing the Internet for UK supplier.
You can get the whole thing as a kit, and it comes in four colour combinations, but the "Rainbow" is the one in the main picture, and the most stunning, in my opinion. Obviously I am not alone, as this colour is mostly sold out.

I found it here in UK on Wool Warehouse website, ordered on Sunday, my parcel arrived today.

The contains all the yarn, and a small bag with bits and bobs,

and the lovely Wool Warehouse people included one of their bags with parcel - to put your work in, or possibly to store your finished shawl in.

The Danish word "hygge" and its definition has been banded around for some time now, I am sure you too know all about it. 
Our crafting also makes us feel good, and that's all part of it. 
I have returned to crochet only recently, so this shawl is going to be a challenge for me, but that is probably just what I need this year 😀

© 2017

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Les Fleurs du Mardi - finished

and on the wall of our dining room.

I really enjoyed playing with fabrics on this quilt.
All blocks are hand stitched needleturn applique.

You know you are nearly there when you are putting it all together; 
but, of course, there is still the quilting to be done.

I use tags instead of pins when quilting, I find it more convenient and quicker,
and a handy tool for removing tags when the quilt is finished.

This large quilt had been a year in making and I just wanted to see it finished, so I took a deep breath and went for machine quilting; it was quite a learning curve, as this is only the second quilt I have ever machine quilted.
Because of the variety of blocks, I used simple free form quilting inside the blocks,

but for the borders I used for the first time the Parrs-Reel Ruler 
I bought at a show last year.


I was taking quilt pictures outside, but the quilt was too long for the washing line.

Les Fleurs du Mardi - TheTuesday Flowers - was BOM 2016 by French magazine Quiltmania; 2 blocks were being published the last Tuesday each month.

All blocks were taken from this book, 
also published by Quiltmania.

Although I am very pleased with the result - it is time to move on......

© 2017

Sunday, 5 February 2017

heavenly beauties

We had a lovely day down our way yesterday - warm and sunny. It was the kind of day, when you wish it to be an early spring day.
We looked for some small garden jobs to do to keep us outside.
There weren't any; it is far too early, so we just made a very short garden tour and set on the bench in the sunshine with our cuppa.
The garden is slowly waking up; the camellia, which we bought before Christmas, is covered in buds and wants to get going. 

Winter flowering clematis is in full swing, 

 and hellebores in the shady part of the garden are at last opening up.

But this is what I have been waiting for, to see this little beauty, the first hepatica blossom - 
"jewels of spring". 

I found out about them only last May, when I watched a TV broadcast from the Chelsea Flower Show.
John Massey from Ashwood Nurseries had a wonderful stand, covered in these little beauties.
They got a a Gold Medal and The Diamond Jubilee Award for their exhibit.

The Diamond Jubilee Award proudly displayed on our hepatica exhibit at RHS Chelsea

I ordered 3 plants of hepaticas nobilis that same night. 
We don't have ideal conditions in our tiny garden; hepaticas are mostly woodland plants - they like plenty of light during winter months and plenty of shade in the summer. 
I can't give them that, so I planted them in pots - last summer they were in a shady corner of our patio and in the autumn I moved them into the brightest patch. 
This one is looking little puny at the moment, but it is in flower, with more buds opening up, and the main thing is that all 3 plants survived the first winter and seems quite happy in our garden.
I am very tempted to get some more 😀

As it happens, there is an article about John Massey and his hepaticas in the latest issue of the Landscape magazine.

Back indoors, I finished another Chateau Hexagon block.

© 2017

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

emails scam

Many of you might be already aware of this, but just in case you haven't come across it yet, it goes like this:

you receive an email from someone you know, which contains a link for you to follow. 
The message might even address you by your name, and possibly say something like " I thought you might be interested in this". If there is no other text in that email, explaining why you are getting this link, or other message from your contact, beware, the chances are that if you click on the link, someone will hack in to your computer and your email contacts.

Over the period of last few months I received several such emails from people I know, and it is possible that somewhere, early on, I did follow one of the links, before I got wise to it. But it seems that someone did manage to get my contacts.
The reason I think that? Yesterday I received email from Luzine Happel (which many of you know), asking me if I had sent an email with a link in it. Thankfully she did not click on the link; I did not send her any such email. But she is listed in my email contacts, as are many of you.

So, if you'll get an email which looks like it is from me, with a link in it, but there are no explanations why I am sending you this link, the chances are that, that the email did not come from me.

I am also sending this message to all my email contacts, and I am scanning my computer every day, but beware, there is always someone out there who is a step ahead.

© 2017

Sunday, 29 January 2017

projects revival

I was waiting for Les Fleurs du Mardi backing fabric to arrive; when it did, I realised that I miscalculated the amount of fabric I need, so I had to order some more. 
Where was my brain that day?😕 
But time is never lost, when there are other projects around, and I do have "just few" of them waiting for some attention 😉. 
Since Christmas, besides making Luna and finishing the silk bag (which you can see in one of my previous posts), 
I have been working on a couple of others.

Santa's Village - a cross stitch project by Country Cottage Needleworks  - a series of 12 houses, which I bought originally as BOM (long time ago).
I just finished month 5, and started working on the 6th. 

 Chateau Hexagon by Lynette Anderson - also bought as BOM.

This is Month 6 finished, and I have started stitching Month 7.

I like this kind of hand stitching, so easy to do in the evenings in front of TV, specially in winter.

I have been sorting out some fabrics for Quilters Patch quilt, which I would like to start making, once Les Fleurs du Mardi is finished (which I plan - unusually for me - to machine quilt).

I wish you all a happy stitching week!

© 2017

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