Tuesday 21 July 2015

Are...............Amaryllis suppose to bloom in July?

After it finished flowering over a year ago I just chucked it in the garden.  Didn't do anything with it until I tidied that patch of the garden, I just tidied it up by cutting of the shrivelled stork and cut the leaves off and tucked it in a corner.  I spotted a bud in the rain the other day.

Saturday 18 July 2015

In the rain................

Whilst wondering around the garden in the rain, I noticed this..........
an Amaryllis in bud,

bought it indoors.

Monday 13 July 2015

In the garden we have...........

Furry ones

Fluffy ones

Yellow ones with spiky centres

Dancing ones

Shasta Daisies

and the roses from this

to this in three days!

Thursday 2 July 2015


Story of this cushion is here

Monday 29 June 2015


My friend asked me if I could recover her bar stools and make some cushion covers too.  She provided the fabric, there was loads left and knowing she liked Seagulls I asked her if she would like a cushion with a Seagull.  
The pattern for the seagull is from Bustle & Sew magazine.  You can also get to Bustle & Sew by clicking on the picture on my sidebar too.

Tuesday 23 June 2015

Our reclaimed Garden

From this at the beginning of January

To this!

Just got to keep the weeds down and hope the plants spread!  At least we are not plagued by the Welsh Leek in the back like we are in the front.  I have more plants in pots which are dotted about the garden to put in.....

Sunday 21 June 2015


Is Midsummer Day
Is the Longest Day
Fathers Day
My 35th Wedding Anniversary

To celebrate I made some shortbread

Easy recipe to make, I make in ounces, because that is the way I was taught to remember it and make it, and besides it really doesn't sound right in grams!

2, 4, 6 Shortbread

2 ozs Sugar  (50grms)
4 ozs Butter  (110gms)
6 ozs Flour  (170grms)

Put all the ingredients in a bowl and rub together with finger tips, work well and as the butter melts the ingredients all gather together and the bowl becomes clean.
Place onto a floured surface and roll out about 1/4" thick and using a biscuit cutter cut out shapes and place onto greased baking sheet.  Keep doing this until all the mixture has been used up.
Prick the shapes with a fork and cook on 180 degrees, Gas 4 for about 15 minutes.  
When cooked take out of the oven, sprinkle with sugar and leave on the baking sheet for about 5 minutes to cool a little.

Friday 19 June 2015

Deforestation of the Garden!

Back in March we had our Sumach tree pollarded.

now it is growing leaves, and the trunk is  looking like giant lollipops, except the one which is smothered in Ivy.  It needed cutting because it was beginning to look like a giant canopy and not letting the sun into the garden, even cutting the grass late afternoon when the surrounding area was dry where the tree was the grass still had morning dew!  

the mini Sumach forest

But.......the tree got its own back, and sent up thousands of suckers,  This type of tree does send up suckers, but after having the tree cut it has got its own back and has sent up four times as many than normal.  

Our front grass all it has going for it, it is GREEN!

Because of the recent downpours, yesterday we thought we had better tackle the "mini forest"

We had a profound Buttercup patch, looked like a Buttercup field

A small Daisy patch as well

The Dandelions I keep for my friend who has them for her tortoise

The before........

Twenty minutes later!

Wednesday 17 June 2015

Princess Charlotte's Bonnet

I have just knitted this sweet little bonnet the new little Princess Charlotte wore the day she was born.

The pattern(s) can be found here
I chose this one.
It was very easy to knit even the cable pattern was simple you didn't need a cable needle, you just knitted two stitches and slip a stitch across.  It was knitted in one piece, the only stitching was to stitch in the ends and stitch up the hem for the casing for the ties

Monday 8 June 2015

Growing up side down..............

Growing upside down

Correct way up

Sunday 7 June 2015

Boot Fair

The boot fair yesterday at Blue Anchor.  The field was full with sellers and loads of people looked.  Although after the pitch fee we made exactly £32, not sure how though because people picked up what they liked, asked the price, I said £1, most things we were selling were a £1 they put it down again and walked  away.  What do they want these days FREEBIES?

Wednesday 3 June 2015

London Pride

London Pride

Someone said to me once what do you want that for its a WEED!  
Weed or not I like London Pride.  It is of the Saxifraga family.

London Pride has been handed down to us,
London Pride is a flower that's free.
London Pride means our own dear town to us,
And our pride is forever will be.
Whoa, Liza,
See the coster barrows,
The vegetable marrows and the fruit piled high,
Oh, Liza,
Little London sparrows,
Covent Garden Market where the costers cry.

Cockney feet 
Mark the beat of history.
Every street pins a memory down.
Nothing ever can quite replace
The grace of London Town.

There's a little city flower,
Ever spring unveiling,
Growing in the crevices,
By some London railing.
Though it has a Latin name
In town and countryside,
We in England call it
London Pride.

London Pride has been handed down to us,
London Pride is a flower that's free.
London Pride means our own dear town to us,
And our pride it forever will be.
Hey, lady,
When the day is dawning,
See the policeman yawning
On his lonely beat.
Gay lady,
Mayfair in the morning,
Hear your footsteps echo 
In the empty street.

Early rain,
And the pavement's glistening,
All Park Lane 
In a shimmering gown.
Nothing ever could break or harm
The charm
Of London Town.

In our city, darkened now,
Street and square and crescent,
We can feel our living past
In our shadowed present.
Ghosts beside our starlit Thames
Who lived and loved and died
Keep throughout the ages
London Pride.

London Pride has been handed down to us,
London Pride is a flower that's free.
London Pride means our own dear town to us,
And our pride it forever will be.
Grey city,
Stubbornly implanted,
Taken so for granted
For a thousand years.
Stay, city,
Smokily enchanted,
Cradle of our memories,
Of our hopes and fears.

Every Blitz,
Your resistance toughening.
From the Ritz
To the Anchor and Crown,
Nothing ever could override
The pride
Of London Town.
                     Noel Coward                               


Wednesday 20 May 2015

Laburnum Tree 2015

For a couple weeks every year the Laburnum tree is in all its glory

The Laburnum Fairy 
Bees! bees! come to the trees
Where the Lime has hung her treasures;
Come, come, hover and hum;
Come and enjoy your pleasures!
The feast is ready, the guests are bidden;
Under the petals the honey is hidden;
Like pearls shine the drops of sweetness there,
And the scent of the Lime-flowers fills the air.
But soon the blossoms pretty and pale
Will all be gone; and the leaf-like sail
Will bear the little round fruits away;
So bees! bees! come while you may!

Cicely Mary Baker

Friday 15 May 2015

Summer is on its way..........

1930's Swimsuit anyone?

Thursday 14 May 2015

Flock of Seagulls!

Of the knitted kind!  
I thought I would knit some Seagulls which are now for sale in my shop (see the side bar).  The pattern was devised by myself which is also for sale if you fancy trying your hand at knitting your own.  

Tuesday 5 May 2015

Dresden Plate Quilt

I haven't been around for a while.  The garden called, I won't show anymore pictures of the garden for a while, you are all spared.  There isn't much to see now anyway.......! I haven't been idle either.  I made some large corsages.  Three were a special order from USA, but two are in my shop (see sidebar).

I have also made the first of three special quilts.

 I used very little equipment to make this quilt. I was shown how to do this quilt too many years ago I care to remember by a lovely lady I once knew as a child, so I know the sizes of how to do this off-by-heart.  When I was first shown there were no such things as cutting mats and cutting wheels, and most patchwork was English Paper Pieced and hand stitched together.  I actually used to use a ruler set-square, protractor before cutting mats - a great invention do you not think - cutting mats that is!

This quilt is a combination of Machine Sewing, Hand Sewing and Quilt-as-you go.


Take a 10" x 5" (5" x 5" square)  piece of fabric and fold in half and press with a hot iron.
Lay on the cutting mat between the 0 and 5" line.
Using a pen and ruler draw the line as shown :-
From 1" top to 0 bottom
From 2" top to 3" bottom
From 5" top to 4" bottom

Cut the pieces carefully holding the fabric.
You will need sixteen pieces just like above.

Fold in half lengthwise and machine across the wide edge.

Just trim the corner

Turn right-side out and press with the iron.
(A lot of pressing is required from this stage)

Machine all the pieces into pairs.  Then press the seam.
Always machine from the pressed pointed end to the narrow edge.
(The centre edges will with uneven but that will not matter)

Then machine the pairs together making section of four pieces,
making sure all the seams are pressed going the same way.

Join the last four seams together and press the four seams

Take a large square of fabric.
This depends how large you would like your patch.
Fold in four and press.
Place four points on the crease lines and carefully measure
to make sure it is central and pin in place.

Hand stitch in place.


I use this stitch on all hand stitching on quilts


Draw round a tin lid onto a piece of light card or thick paper.

Cut a circle of fabric at least 1/2" wider than the card.

Stitch row of running stitched close to the edge leaving a long tail of thread,
don't fasten off, leave another long tail of thread,
fold in four and press to make guide lines.

Place the card disc into the centre of the fabric
and pull the tails of thread to gather the fabric.
Slightly press on this side, remove the card disc.

Pin to the centre of the patch, using the creases as guidelines.
Measure to make sure the centre is central.
Stitch in place as you did with the pointed patch.

If you wish to decorate the centre patch, do this now.
I blanket stitched round the edge of this patch.


Lay out the patches
Measure and cut inner edges, as illustrated.
(The inner edges are half width of the main edge and joined later.)

Repeat with other inner edges
this time including the first edgings in the measurements

The outer edge is twice the width of the inner edges

If the edges are of darker fabric make sure all the
seams are pressed away from the light fabric

I always cut the backing fabric and wadding (batting)
larger than the top patch

Pin or tack the three layers in place

The fun bit!

Trim the edges

TIPS that work for me

Pin the backing and the wadding out of the to
quilt-as-you-go joining the patches together

To make sure the seams meet together accurately because the weight of the quilting makes the quilt heavy and awkward, I always pin and machine the joins first, then I machine the full length of the quilt, this stops the fabric slipping despite of the pinning well first.


Trim the wadding (batting) to fit in the space

Pin in place and hand stitch using the blind stitch.
Be careful not to take the needle to the front of the quilt.

To bind the quilt I followed these instructions

I have been making this style of quilt ever since I could hold a pair of scissors and needle and thread, and have made quite a few over the years, some quilts were completed and some were left.......  I even made a skirt from the pattern once too!  That is is whole new story................

The design is called the The Dresden Plate.

The Dresden Plate was devised by the German emigrant women in the 1930's from their precious Dresden Plates.   They drew round their fancy precious plates and folded the circular paper pattern into sections and the template was born!

This particular design make a sixteen piece patch, but remember a circle is 360 degrees so experiment!

22.5 degree angles  =  16 piece patch
45 degree angles  =  8 piece patch
90 degree angles  = 4 piece patch

10 degree angles  = 36 piece patch
20 degree angles  =  18 piece patch

12 degree angles  =  30 piece patch
24 degree angles  =  15 piece patch

60 degree angles  =  6 piece patch
40 degree angles  =  9 piece patch

I use the 16 piece patch because I know it fits onto a 5" square of fabric

For an assortment of graph papers go here  you can even print polar graph paper.  This graph paper is circular!