Basting a quilt; trying a new trick..

I treated myself to issue three of Love patchwork & quilting over Christmas. It came with a free pack of quilting pins. I obviously had them on my mind as somewhere I read a great tip for using the quilters pins when basting a quilt! I have no idea where I read this, somewhere in my twitter feed there must have been a link to a post! If you have any ideas where I’ve got this from let me know and I’ll link to it!

Today was Ted’s first day back at preschool after Christmas so i wanted to get started on a panel of Owl fabric I bought when I went to visit the Oh Sew Sweet Shop a couple of weeks ago. I’ve had problems in the past with wrinkly backing when I’ve not done a great job at basting.


Using the quilting pins I pinned the calico to the carpet. The pins are pushed as far as they’ll go into the carpet to pull the backing tight.


Next I layered up the batting and on top the panel. Finally, I started seeing the layers together. I was worried about how easy it would be to sew and make sure I could get all 3 layers together and not sew into the carpet. Actually it was easier than I’d thought, I got the knack of feeling the carpet with the needle and just kind of missing it.. Once it was basted I just pulled the pins out, it was easy today as it’s a new pack so it was obvious when I’d got all of them back.

I’ve heard of 2 different ways to baste, I’m sure there are hundreds more! One is to start in the middle and work lines out in all directions. The other, used here, is to start in one corner and stitch zig zags in lines down the quilt.


So here it is ready to quilt, once my helper wakes up!

I love comments so don’t be shy, let me know what you think…

Curious George hand quilted cushion covers

A year ago we took a trip to the States. My husband has an office in Seattle and we went to stay with friends over there. In amongst all the toddler friendly activities we found time to visit a couple of fabric shops.

Ted had just discovered Curious George so I couldn’t resist this fabric.

Since we returned it has been sat waiting for me to do something with it. As we were due a long road trip I made Ted a cushion to take a long. He loved it and we’ve used quite a bit since, in fact the last long trip we took he moaned because I’d forgotten the cushion!


I made it by layering the fabric with wadding and calico to back it. I basted the three layers together then started quilting. I began by sewing an arc around my thumb in the corner of the cushion cover, then stitching lines parallel to it until the whole cushion was covered. Lines were spaced about a thumb’s width apart. Stitching was totally by eye, I lay the thread down along the line I wanted so I could see where to make the stitch.


Since it was such a hit with Ted I’ve cut out a couple more from the remaining fabric and have been busy quilting them to make up into cushion covers and put up in my shop – so I hope there are some more Curious George fans out there!


I love comments so don’t be shy, let me know what you think…

Folksy shop

After all the procrastination,  I finally did it!

Welcome to my shiny new shop!

2 years ago I took the plunge and quit my job. The aim was to spend more time with my son, get a dog and to try to make a go of selling my embroidery and quilts. This summer I finished my Certificate at the Royal School of Needlework and ran out of excuses!

So here we have my collection..

Some Christmas wreaths – I made one of these for myself last year and just love the colours so couldn’t resist making some more!

Some baby quilts, this is my favourite, I’ve listed it as a playmat/quilt as it’s square and reminds me of a very useful blanket I had for my son when he was a baby, it kept him warm in his pram and I could put it on the floor for him when we were out and about..

This neutral quilt is one of three I made this summer, the other two were bought by a friend and I’ve had great feedback for them 🙂


Finally a piece of embroidery, I love how this looks.. I’m wondering whether to write up the pattern for it and we that to the shop as well?

I’m very proud of every thing up there, it’s not loads, but it’s all stuff I’m happy to put my name to and I hope a good start to build on.



So 2 weeks on and the heady thrill of making some sales has cleared. I’m making more quilts – trying to think of them as stock and explaining to Ted that they’re not all for him (well not unless things go badly!).

When Jo asked me to make her 2 neutral coloured quilts I had a plan of what i wanted to sew, but I did no planning. I went to the fabric store and guessed at how much fabric I would need. I bought 6x half meters of creams and golds and 2 meters of a white on white to use as backing fabric – I have so far made 3 quilts out of this and have plenty left for another – though there’s plenty of white on white left there’s not enough to back another quilt. While this fabric won’t be wasted I guess I should have done some maths before I went shopping.

my helper

This morning was a different again, I saw some gorgeous boys fabric new in. I asked Julie for help and we designed the quilt there and then and more importantly did some maths to work out how much to buy! I’m still fairly new to this and am trying to keep proper accounts now and so I have to plan a bit more! In this quilt I’m hoping to incorporate a bit of embroidery as well so watch this space.

While the new fabric is washing I have 2 basted quilts to finish today then maybe I’ll get closer to that Etsy store!

Boy’s own quilt progress


Slow progress, but I’m getting there. I love this quilt! i love the fabrics and the design. It’s made up of appliqué and little embroidered cartoon strips. It’s great fun to do and tends to live next to the sofa for me to pick up and do of an evening.

I’m using it to practise appliqué, I’m trying needle-turn appliqué for the first time. Having discovered freezer paper it’s going a lot easier than I first thought!

Boys own quilt

Since my resolution has been to start finishing things I have been working away trying to finish up some projects.

2 and a half years ago my mum and I went to the quilt show at Hever Castle and I signed up to a block a month quilt. I eagerly started the quilt then it got left to one side and ignored for, well 2.5 years!

I’m so glad I’ve picked it back up again as I just love the design. Here’s the fist completed block.


As you can see it’s a combination of appliqué and embroidered cartoon strips, I had done most of the embroidery but was struggling a bit on the appliqué. I did a course before Christmas and learned how to use freezer paper to do the appliqué which has really helped and now I’m working away on the second block which has an appliqué boat on it and 3 cartoon strips. Hopefully it won’t take me another 2 years to finish this one now I know what I’m doing!

Work may slow down a bit next week as I’m heading to the Royal School of Needlework for another lesson. I should get my canvas work off the frame and hopefully will get my Goldwork framed up – I’m very exciting about doing the gold and will photograph and blog my progress.