Saturday, 30 June 2012

Getting My Creative Juices Flowing

A few weeks ago, I decided to sign up for the Brit Quilt Swap.   We are swapping mini quilts in this round.

I am completely terrified but also absolutely excited to take part.  I am a rookie newbie to this fantastic swap but the talent in the group is overwhelming.  The thought that I will be the proud owner of a mini quilt made just for me by an amazing sewista was just too enticing and I had to go for it.

We were assigned our partners just this last week, which means that I have been acquainting myself from afar {stalking} someone new to me.

Ideas have been bubbling around my head for several days but I have finally come up with a plan.

Sadly, for now, that is all I can divulge but watch this space...

What I can tell you is that on another project, I have been practising sewing circles.

Blimey! they don't show up well in the photograph above.

I used a technique I learned last week at the quilt show to leave no raw edges.  The circles look they they are needle-turn appliqués.

Alongside this technique, I got a few tips on appropriate thread - including using special bobbin thread for appliquéing and the benefit of sewing the circle on the tiniest stitch length possible before turning it.

The postman has just delivered the most fantastic parcel all the way from Germany.  It's from Christine of Grapes and Hearts blog.  We met through the Fat Quarterly Retreat preparations.  We both joined in late and were going to swap gifts at the Retreat. When I didn't make it, Christine offered to send me what she'd made.  Of course, I happily reciprocated.

Just check out this fantastic array of loveliness

What could be inside????

Pouch, sweets and card holders

Infinity Scarf

Thanks for visiting me and my daydreams today.

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Another Framed Purse

Last week when I was hunting for more sewing supplies at my local haberdashery, the lady who works there saw my framed purse.

She was so taken with it and asked me if I would make one for her.

She has been a great help to me since I started sewing, so I was happy to stitch this little number up for her.


I couldn't resist this super cute cotton reel fabric for the outside of the purse, nor the buttons one for the lining.


I was far more restrained with the glue this time around!


Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Summersville Pouch Finish

I managed to finish off the Summersville quilted zippered pouch.

I love how it turned out.  I didn't have time to quilt it as extensively as I would have liked but I'm still really happy with it.

For the lining I used some amazing orange Oakshott fabric.  I am so in love with the pink weft.




Today is my hubby and I's 13th wedding anniversary.  So, {bottoms up} clink a glass with me if you will.
Mine will be a glass of super cool Asti Martini. Classy bird!!!

Cheerio for today 

Monday, 25 June 2012

Quilt Show Inspiration

There really were some magnificent quilts on display at yesterday's National Quilt Championships in Sandown Racecourse.

I took a few pictures of some truly amazing quilts, to share with you all.  They were so inspiring.  Some that I absolutely loved had notices saying "No Photography" which is so sad.  I really wanted to remember how great they were.

Here are some of the exhibits:-

Sandown Quilt Championship
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Sandown Quilt Championship
Critters' After Party by Marijke Van Welzen
Sandown Quilt Championship
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Sandown Quilt Championship
Catherine Wheel by Jennie Payment
Sandown Quilt Championship
The Magic Isle by Alison Smart
Sandown Quilt Championship
A Walk on the Wild Side at Sunset by Sandy Peat
Sandown Quilt Championship
Woodland Wildlife by Deborah Collins
Sandown Quilt Championship
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The credits are copied from the Programme I bought for the day, where I could locate them - I hope that they are correct as these amazing sewista's deserve full proper credit.  It was my first show and I stupidly didn't capture the entry number with the quilt which would have helped me identify them more easily.  Please help me add credits if you know the details. 

I attended an amazing Workshop called Creating Hand Look Needle-Turn Effect Applique by Machine with Eileen Blood.  More on that soon...

Thank you so much for visiting.

Sunday, 24 June 2012

The National Quilt Champs at the Racecourse

I have just got in from a thoroughly lovely day at the National Quilt Championships 2012 at Sandown Racecourse.

My mum and I hitched a ride with the local 1066 Quilters.  We were warmly welcomed by their coach load of members.

It was my first time attending this show and it was so much fun to see all that fabric in one place.

Here is my haul for the day... well, okay here is a {bit} of my haul for the day :wink:


The Perle Cotton is amazing and I am so pleased to have found the girl tweezers that I have been hankering after all year!

Pop back tomorrow for pics of some of the quilts we saw and more stash too.

Hope you all had a super Sunday

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Versatile Blogger Award

I'm very excited to say that Dandelion Daydreams has been nominated for The Versatile Blogger Award.

How happy am I!?!?!

It's such an unexpected honour to receive another award for my ickle blog.  I am so happy to be a small part of the blogging community and its such encouragement for another blogger to think enough of my Daydreams to put me forward.  

Thank you so much to Jaysmonkey.  What a gorgeous blog and Folksy shop Stef has - check out that Bee necklace! I think I probably {need} one of those!!

You can find the VBA Rules here.  This Award has a whole blog all to itself.

As part of the Award, I have to post 7 {interesting} things about myself and nominated 15 other amazing bloggers.  So here goes:-

Seven Random Things About Me

1.  I am an expert at gargling.  Yep, you read that correctly - I love to gargle.  I can gargle the National Anthem, Happy Birthday or any other tune you care to request!!!

2.  My favourite time of the day is... Navy Blue.  That time just after dusk but before full on darkness descends. Navy Blue time is the best.

3.  I taught myself how to stop a sneeze - by pretend coughing instead; very useful when driving.

4.  For years, I was petrified of my sewing machine.  I couldn't even thread the needle!!  and I thought changing the foot was something you had to take it to the shop to do.  It sat unused, as the world's most expensive doorstop, circa. 1999-2010.

5.  My favourite town place in the world is right on my doorstep - Hastings Old Town.

Source: The Telegraph
Its full of higgledy piggledy streets; there are secret passageways; unusual houses and charm a plenty but there is also character and life oozing out of every nook and cranny.  One of the net huts is home to the most amazing fish and chips restaurant.  And there is a funicular railway too! Not a vernacular one - as I wrote in my first draft by mistake ROFL!!!
Hastings East Hill cliff railway
Source: Lucy Paintbox
Source: WikiTravel
6.  I try to practice Out Of Time Dancing whenever and wherever possible.  It's much harder than you think to dance out of time to the music on purpose.  Singing out of time comes a close second to things that I like to waste my spare seconds doing.

7.  This Sunday I am going to the National Quilt Championships in Sandown, Esher with my local Quilting Guild.  

My Nominees, in no particular order, are as follows:

I will tag them all later today and I can't wait to hear their 7 random things.

Cheerio for now

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Flikr Inspiration

It wasn't very long ago that I had hardly even heard of Flikr.

Now I could waste many happy hours browsing through the amazing photographs, especially the {modern} quilts and makes.

I am just learning how to use Favourites and have made a couple of mosaics of by current muses.

None of these pics are mine - they are all other people's creations.  If you click on them, you should find a link to the original creator.

My creation


Flikr is fantastic - the only thing is that there is so much going on over there, you can easily fill up every spare second you'll ever even dream of having!!!!! I just signed up for the Brit Quilt Swap Round 3 - which is a mini quilt swap.  I am so excited and nervous in equal measure, but the idea of having an amazing Mini to display on my wall was just too enticing {that an some encouragement from one of my very bestest bloggy friends}.

Have a fab day.

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Flower Fairy Pouch

One of the Dandelions has been invited to the most amazing birthday party.  It's a horse-riding party and she is going to ride for the first time.

When I was a little girl, my first love was horses.   I remember begging my mum to let me try out riding.  She tried her best to discourage me but I was besotted.  I could have stayed at the stables day and night.

And I really hope that my little Dandelion will love it too.  Fingers crossed.

I whipped up a pressie for the birthday girl tonight - I couldn't find any nice horse themed fabric locally, so I used up some of the beautiful Flower Fairy fabric from the leftovers from quilt I made earlier this year.

Flower Fairy birthday pouch


Sorry for the dire pics - night vision!!! slightly enhanced by Aviary through Flikr.  I just discovered Aviary and I love that its so easy to add text to photos.

Happy sewing!

Monday, 18 June 2012

Summersville Sewing

Inspired by the orange zip I bought at the Haberdashery, I made this start on a quilted zippered Summersville pouch that has been floating around in my imagination ever since I saw Lu's amazing fabric.

Hopefully I will manage to get both panels quilted tomorrow - not sure how yet.  Any suggestions? FMQ squiggles? straight lines?

Linking up to the Manic Monday Linky Party over on Sew Happy Geek.

Sew Happy Geek
and also Plum and June's Monday Link Up
Plum and June

Hoping you have a lovely day.

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Vintage Haberdashery Happiness

Yesterday, I found a treasure...

Right here on my doorstep!!!!!

THE most amazing Vintage Haberdashery you have ever seen.

Source: Wayward website
Its called Wayward and is an eclectic mix of vintage linens, buttons, trims, ticking, voile... in fact just about everything you could dream of in a vintage haberdashery and its huge!  I bought a metre of the most wonderful grey heavy linen.

The super stylish lady serving pointed me in the direction of some amazing genuine Saville Row tailoring fabric and also mentioned that there are some rolls of vintage fabric which were used by Warner Bros several decades ago.

There was so much to take in that I am only scratching the surface with what I am mentioning.

Its only open on a Saturday, but I understand that they have a stall at the Portobello Market on a Friday and can also be found once at week at Gardner Street Market in Brighton too.

Fabulous Mr Men ribbon which was only £1 for the whole roll.

And an amazing roll of orange ribbon and bright *longer* length zips to add to my collection.

Cheerio for today

It's oh so quiet...

Wordle: framed purse wordle

It's oh so quiet...  its oh so still...  *hums Bjork song loudly* 

At least sewing progress has been incredibly quiet and slow.

The Dandelion boy is just discovering words.

So we have entered that phase of toddlerhood where every time he utters a new word, we are all overwhelmingly impressed.

As a result he likes to practice talking all the time...

I mean all the time...

Especially at bed-time!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Arghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! Since I usually sew after the Dandelions are asleep, this has meant absolutely totally frustratingly no sewing time whatsoever *miserable mummy*.

The Dandelion girl has just discovered Wordles.  That funny mess of words atop of this page is one such Wordle - aren't they cool?  You just feed in lots of words and the programme creates a funky montage for you to play around with.  I will definitely be using it every week to print off her spellings.

Inspired by all the framed purses being made recently, I placed an order with U-Handbag earlier this week.  And yesterday I managed to (rather disastrously) sew up my first ever one.

I was completely pants at the gluing stage.

And managed to get the annoying stuff all over the outside of the frame and the fabric.

But after a lot of scraping and picking off that glue, I am really pleased with how it turned out.

They certainly are addictive these ickle framed purses.

I am already itching to make some more.

Happy sewing Sewistas.
Cheerio for today.

Sunday, 10 June 2012

Mini Pencilmania Ta-Dah

Time for a little Ta-Dah today...

The Pencilmania mini is complete.

I have never been so prepared for the end of term.  This is destined to be a teacher appreciation gift for the end of term.

Fortunately, it looks better in real life than in the photographs.

I used a cute FQ of Celebrate Seuss on the back, which has turned out to be my favourite bit!

And it was my first time adding corner triangles for hanging purposes.  I'm always baffled about how to hang a quilt or mini on the wall.  Any recommendations???

I like the pattern but I wish the pencils were a little bigger.  I will definitely make some more of these but maybe enlarge them a bit.

Linking up with the spectacular Plum and June blog - there is a lot of very great stuff going on over there right now.
Plum and June
Happy Sewing!

Saturday, 9 June 2012

An inspiring trip to the theatre to see Steve Backshall

Yesterday my little Dandelion girl and I had a whole day out to ourselves.  We went to Royal Tunbridge Wells.  A place that is always a pleasure to visit.  

Source: Howfied Canterbury
We did a spot of shopping, ate noodles and cake for lunch and then went to the theatre for an early audience with the naturalist Steve Backshall.  Can I just say that its well worth clicking on that last link there!!!!!! He is one hell of a guy - inspirational, enthusiastic and gorgeous to boot.

Source: Wikipedia
He boldly told the children to plan for life like it was an adventure and to "savour every second".  He urged us all not to regret missed opportunities but to seize them with both hands.

During our train journey earlier that day, my little girl and I had stitched a little embroidery of Steve's Deadly 60 programme logo in the hope that we could get him to sign it as a keepsake.  He didn't disappoint.

During the show he reminded us that its only a recent development that humans spend so much of their time indoors engaged in sedentary pursuits rather than outside in the fresh air enjoying natural endorphins from physical exertion, discovering nature and learning to live in harmony with it.  He was extremely humble and gracious.  It was so refreshing to hear someone so positive and happy.

He brought the tales of his adventures to life, through his words and short V.T.s; he answered the children's questions and he finished up with this quote from T E Lawrence:-
This, therefore, is a faded dream of the time when I went down into the dust and noise of the Eastern market-place, and with my brain and muscles, with sweat and constant thinking, made others see my visions coming true. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that all was vanity; but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dream with open eyes, and make it possible.

Today, as we were walking in our local woods, I couldn't help but identify with the things he had said.  I always feel so much better after my daily dog walk.  The sound of the birds singing and the smells of the woods are some of my favourite things.  My daughter too seemed to have absorbed a great deal and was more alive than ever to nature today.

Here is a picture of our darling little spaniel, who has taught me that I don't melt in the rain, that in fact skin is waterproof and that there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing!

Back soon with the Finished pencilmania mini quilt.
Cheerio for now.