Monday, 20 September 2010

Salt Dough

I forgot to post about the salt dough ornament I had to make for the WI monthly competition, last month. I went online for the recipe, as I had not used salt dough for a while. I meant to bookmark the recipe I used, but I can't find it. I had an idea of what I wanted to do, drew a rough sketch out on silicone paper(baking parchment) to get a rough size and started off by weaving the basket. I then laid a trellis of fine, overlapping stems on the background, to stabilise the work, and made the flowers and the leaves on top. I let it dry and then painted it using my granddaughter's paint box. After drying it again, I gave it two layers of varnish, to try to preserve it. I know it will not last long here in the damp, salty air, but I thought I would at least make the effort! I had great fun making this, and it is so easy to do. I got first prize.

I have not touched a needle this week. We have had loads of people dropping in, we have been busy getting the place ready for the winter (we have already had a few days of very high winds/gales) and we have been here there and everywhere! Not very productive on the sewing front, but good otherwise.

I am getting my head down this week. Promise!
Till next time.

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Afghan and Surprise Parcel

I have been blog hopping a lot recently, as I am still being careful with my back. I saw a lot of crochet and Granny squares being made, so I thought I would share my afghan with you. I have not completed it, as you can see, as I have run out of the black for the last few rows, but this will be a nice, cosy project to do on a cold, winter night. Here is a close up -

I got a nice surprise packet in the post today. A nice Civil War fat quarter from Susie. I do not have your email, so thank you so much.

I think I have thanked everybody now, but if I haven't - THANK YOU, THANK YOU,THANK YOU! I am slowly getting on with Dear Jane. I am now over ten blocks and attempting L10 - Nan's Naiad. It is a stinker!! I am really enjoying the challenge, and I LOVE the materials. I squirrel each tiny little scrap, so that nothing will be wasted and have plans for these little beauties.

The weather here is changing slowly, but I am not worrying about the shorter days. I will be warm and cosy and have loads of things to do.
Till next time.

Bonnie Leman Tribute

Bonnie Leman 1991, courtesy LCPQ #74

It is with great sadness I heard of the death of Bonnie Leman. Although she did not know of me, I thought of Bonnie as a close patchwork friend, a friend who was much more talented than I could ever be, but who, unstintingly, passed on her knowledge and gave me great encouragement, via her magazines. 

Way back in the early seventies, when I started to do patchwork, there was very little information about it in Scotland. I had taught myself how to do hexagons, using the paper method, but when my sister sent me over a copy of Quilters' Newsletter, I was off. I loved the American way of sewing seam to seam, without having to tack in papers, and I immediately sent off for a subscription, so that I could learn all the techniques. The magazine was wonderful. It told me of all the beautiful materials which were available, notions I had never heard of and gave me wonderful ideas for quilts and projects. I was in seventh heaven.

Because of Mrs Leman, I went on to take the City & Guilds exams in Advanced Embroidery (at that time there was no C & G Patchwork!), started the first patchwork group in Scotland (the Sew and Sews in Glasgow), was a founder member of the Quilters' Guild and went out to California and sat the NQA Teacher Certification exams - all because of Bonnie Leman. The two most wonderful things to result from all this  - I got a mini quilt published in the magazine, and I participated in a block competition, also in the magazine, and won! I cannot tell you how I felt, when these events occurred!

Patchwork and Quilting would not be what it is today, without Bonnie. We all owe her a HUGE debt of gratitude. May she rest in peace. Thank you.
With sincere condolences,
Rosemary Dempster

Monday, 6 September 2010

DJ Blocks + Noah's Ark


These are the latest Dear Jane blocks to be completed. I am having trouble with the disc in my back again, so I have been laid up for a few days. I have been doing a lot of blog hopping, listening to audio books and embroidering.

I had this BOM by Lynnette Anderson Designs. It is a really old BOM, which I had downloaded, and it lay about, waiting to be done for a long time. I started it in  December, just before my sister got ill. I put it aside, when things got bad, but I really wanted to complete it, so I got it out again, when I had to sit in the chair. I cannot leave designs in their original state. I have got to add something in, or take something out. I have always been like this!! The original Noah's Ark design is beautiful, but I wanted to make this a welcome wallhanging, when you come to visit, so I added a few words, making the letters random, and made one of the blocks say 'Welcome'. I also added a few fancy stitches and changed some of the colours. I hope Lynette does not mind!! I have checked on her site, but this BOM no longer seems to be there. Please excuse the pictures. I can't get the ironing board out (can't lift anything yet), so you can see the marks where the hoop was, on the block I am finishing. Noah's bald head needs to be redone in a darker colour, as it is receding (no pun intended!) I have another five or six blocks to go. There is a block with birds eating fish. I am going to change the birds to puffins, to make it relate to Orkney. When the blocks are finished, I have then to cut them out and put a thin border round each, in different colours of cotton, and these are then sewn together, to make the wallhanging. These are my favourite blocks so far -

The Noah's Ark BOM is being offered again for $5Aus, on Lynette's site above.

Thankful Thoughts
Jeni has come through her operation and is feeling very positive. Thank You.
Till next time.

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Look at This!!

I found this video on YouTube and then saw it on a blog, whilst I was surfing. It seems such an easy technique to make Pineapple blocks. 

Sunday, 29 August 2010


I don't know why, but it takes me a wee while before I get back into my routine, once the girls are back home. I dither about, and do not seem to be very productive. I am getting back to Dear jane. I think she thought I was abandoning her, but I actually have produced some blocks (will post pictures later) and I am enjoying the challenge yet again.

Before I went off island to see the family, I received some parcels, about which I omitted to blog. I just ran out of time. The above photos show the wonderful items and the beautiful cards I received, - from embroidery threads, beautiful Civil War and Australian fabrics, a batik, quilt labels and siggie blocks. Thank you Beverly and Katie, Gwen, Julie, Linden, the wonderful Rosa (yet again!!), Carol, Donna, Barbara and especially my mini quilt swap partner Doreen. I am speechless at your generosity! I am sorry I took so long to get back to you all.

A little sad news. Jenni, who wrote about me on the Austalian Yahoo group is not well and is going into hospital on the 31st of August. Please keep her in your prayers.

Thankful Thoughts
I have such a lot to thank Rosa and Jenni for. I received such a wonderful lot of goodies, but more than that, people, whom I did not know, reached out to me in my time of sadness. I have such a wonderful collection of cards and notes, wishing me well, and I don't think I will ever forget how wonderful everybody has been. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart!!

Monday, 23 August 2010

Hi! - photo heavy

No, I have not fallen off the planet!! My husband and I went on a whirlwind visit round the family off island. Twice to my daughter's (and the new granddaughter) near Edinburgh, twice to my father-in-law in Glasgow, who has Alzheimer's, two nights with my son in Leeds and one day just for ourselves, which we spent at the New Lanark Mill in New Lanark. I will do a post on this later on. We went back to my daughter's and picked up my two older granddaughters (five and seven) for the rest of the summer. We had a ball. There was no sewing done, but we played and worked and picnicked. I have included some pictures to show how we spent our time.