Ocean and Coral Crochet in the Garden

What a lovely day today after torrential rain yesterday! I am sitting in the garden with my new crochet project, writing my blog post and drinking a cup of tea on the swingy seat! I am using cool oceanic and coral crochet colours which is quite restful on the eyes in the glare of the sun!   I think I may have mentioned before how much I love sitting in my little hideaway at the bottom of the garden 🙂 There are birds on the grass right by me, eating the cherries from our tree!!! Every year they eat them before we do and I swear they reccy the tree for weeks leading up to them ripening and then sit on the fence squawking out the information to their cronies! On the day most cherries turn purple and yummy, if we are not at home, we will come back to a bare tree!

cherries ripening in the sun

this is a small selection of the tree!

This is my crochet – I am using a lovely soft cotton and acrylic mix by Cygnet. It is going to be a holiday bag but it’s so soft and comfy while I am making it I feel I should turn it into a summer blanket!  We are going on the ferry to France and an oceanic and coral coloured bag seemed just the thing, but then so would a cosy blanket for snoozing under on the journey!

crochet bag

this is the bag base with all the colours to use

Oh well decisions!  I will have a think whilst watching Dolly Parton at Glastonbury!  Later I’ll be popping over to Handmade Monday for a catch up with the other blogs.  Hope everyone is having a lovely Glasto-watching weekend too!

Photo Cushion

I mentioned last week that I was making a photo cushion for a special occasion! Well it was my Uncle’s 80th birthday!   His actual birthday was a couple of week’s ago but as the ‘girls’ in the extended family usually go to see my aunty and uncle in the summer we were combining this trip with the special birthday.

We set off Saturday morning, stopping on the way for a picnic at the Cannock Chase which was a very good stop over with picnic tables, café and park and lovely summer solstice weather.

I had booked 3 rooms in a  Hotel in Tamworth for Saturday night.  This meant we could get up and enjoy a freshly prepared breakfast on Sunday before driving the last 50 minutes to the restaurant for the birthday lunch.  Sadly my oldest grandson was awake at 5.30am and so then we were we all soon wide awake as well! This is after being allowed to stay up late the night before in the hope of a lie-in – no such luck though !

We had a good pub meal on the Saturday night – my youngest grandson was well behaved waiting for the meal as spent the time covering himself in stickers !  Here he is enjoying his pudding!

Pudding and Stickers!

Pudding and Stickers!

The birthday lunch was another yummy meal – a carvery and very good too, followed by crème brulee!   Gosh I was full.  The boys enjoyed entertaining the relatives with their silly antics and best of all my uncle loved his present!

So here is the cushion I made for his birthday present!   Thank you to Wendy for the idea in her post here a couple of Handmade Monday’s ago!

patchwork photo cushion

80th Birthday Cushion

The birthday balloon picture was taken at another birthday obviously but seemed very apt for the cushion.

So now over to handmade Monday and hope you all had a lovely summer solstice!


photo cushion
80th Birthday Cushion Reverse side with hidden zip

New Rotary Cutter and a Photo Cushion!

Haven’t really done much this week after my flurry of industrious sewing last couple of weeks!  One thing I have started though is a photo cushion like Wendy made a couple of week’s ago.  I bought some fabric paper and some other bits and bobs and am going to enjoy designing some new personalised items for upcoming family events.  I have started the cushion front and back and put the zip in and printed off the photos.    Cutting the fabric was made so much easier by using my new rotary cutter!

fiskars-faric cutter

cutting fabric

In my quilting group on  facebook I recently read of all the accidents people have using the normal rotary cutrter and was amazed that I haven’t had one – I am rather accident prone in regards to things like that. Anyway shortly afterwards I saw this machine for sale which is like a paper cutter but is for fabric.   It’s really good – unlike the Simplicity one I bought last month but had to return.  This one by Fiskars actually does cut!   I first saw it on Create and Craft TV and it was exclusive to them but it sold out before I could order one!  Now it seems to being stocked in other places and I managed to acquire one. It’s wonderful for anyone who has any sort of hand or arm problem like me and who may just wobble enough to slice off a finger tip when using the hand held cutters.

I will post  a picture of the finished cushion next week as it’s for a special birthday and can’t be unveiled just yet!

lake Vrynwy in Wales

View of Lake Vyrnwy early evening

This is the shore of Lake Vyrnwy where DH and I relaxed in the late afternoon and early evening sunshine one day last week. We had been for a trip to the Charlie’s store in Welshpool and decided to go home via the scenic route with a stopover on the way.

It was lovely sitting reading and resting by the lakeside with only lapping water making any sort of noise.  I was engrossed in my book and we had a very nice few hours there.

Well I will join up with Handmade Monday again now, a bit later than usual as we have had the children here for Fathers’ Day – all at different times today so not had a moment to upload till now!

Finishing WiPs! – Pixie Coat!

I have been on a roll this week as I finished two WiPs!!  (Only about another 7 to go 🙂  ) Firstly I just had to show off my finished Pixie Coat.  My friend was delighted with it and asked me to upload it to facebook so if you want to see all the pics pop over to my page, The Patchwork Fairy.    But here are some anyway!

pixie coat

Kate posing in her coat!








Then we have me showing how it fans out from the back!

back view of pixie coat

me showing the twirl factor !









I put some felt applique flowers on the back which I sewed over free form embroidery style.  On the front I needle felted a penguin as Kate loves penguins and collects penguiny things!

needle felted red penguin

Needle Felted Penguin









The children at the nursery where Kate works are going to get quite a surprise when she walks in tomorrow!

I am very pleased with the coat, it was the third one I have made. Not all of the jumpers felted properly but as they were my friend’s late Aunty’s  jumpers which I specifically wanted to use for her I went ahead and it’s worked out ok I think! Whilst I would answer any questions about making the coats I am not going to write a tutorial as it wouldn’t be fair to Katwise who is the originator of the coats. So, if anyone fancies making a coat from upcycled jumpers I would recommend buying the Katwise tutorial – it’s a very entertaining read as well as informative!

My other finish this week was a picnic blanket and matching bag.  The stash I recently inherited contained a fabric sample book like you see in a curtain shop.  It was full of rectangles of what looks like 1960s/70s fabric – it has the information sheet intact with a house all done out in the fabric!  It’s not what  wanted for my house but it is great for outside so I carefully pulled all the samples out of the book, washed and ironed them all and then sewed them into a patchwork mat.  There was one large piece which was at the front of the book which has made a great bag for carrying it in.

picnic mat
picnic mat
waterproof backing on mat

waterproof backing on mat

matching bag with matching lining
matching bag with matching lining


folded picnic mat showing waterproof backing

folded picnic mat showing waterproof backing










I can’t take credit for the waterproof backing idea as it’s a shower curtain and I read about this idea on Vicky Myers’ blog!  It’s a very quick and easy way to damp-proof your mat!  I even lined the bag with the curtain too so when the mat goes back in dirty I can wipe the bag clean easily!













That’s all for this week!  As usual I am off to Handmade Monday!  See you there? x

Pixie Coat

So was I productive in May?  Well I was in my head 🙂  I have far more ideas buzzing round than actual projects being completed!

I mainly worked on my latest pixie coat this month.  It’s the third one I have made and the first in a year as my overlocker has only just come back from being fixed.

This is the last stages of the coat – just the front ties to sew onto the body now and then add some embellishments!

pixie-coat from recycled wool sweaters

pixie coat almost finished!

It’s not easy to find pure wool sweaters for these coats which will felt up properly. Many wool sweaters are treated to stop them shrinking and felting – great for normal wash days but not for recyclers!!  The sweaters for this coat came mainly from my BFF who’s aunty had died.  She passed on the sweaters for me for my stash as she knows I recycle them but I decided to make a special coat for her which will be a lovely keepsake (I hope!).   She has admired my other pixie coats and so I really hope she likes her present.

pixie coat from recycled wool sweaters

hood on pixie coat

I made my Pixie coats from the Katwise tutorial – she is the inspiration for these coats.  I think it’s much cheaper to get sweaters in US dollar stores than in our UK charity shops though unfortunately for me!

The other main thing I have completed this month is my entry for the ‘Make it your own’ clutch bag competition.  Here is my 70s inspired bag.  (This was the last decade when I could actually have a bag that small and went on nights out!)

brown and range clutch bag

bag with my seventies beads!

The competition was run by Deby  at Sew So Easy and you can read my post about making the bag here.  Please think about popping over to her blog and adding a vote for me using the link below!




inside of clutch bag orange floral lining
handy pocket for essentials!

 Linking up with Handmade Monday and Fresh Sewing Day and Small Blog Meet at Lily’s Quilts