Wednesday, 31 March 2010

My first White Wednesday

Hi there, I am so excited to be joining white wednesday at Faded Charms. These linens belonged to my grandma, she lived to be 102 years old.

I remember her sitting crocheting this tablecloth when I was a child. Her whole house was full of what she called her 'fancy work'.

Everything in her home she made herself, curtains, cushions, soft furnishings and all her clothes. I remember her sitting at her Singer treadle sewing machine, I was always fasinated, so began my love of fabrics.

The pillowslips belonged to her mother and though the fabric is getting thin I treasure them.

I loved Karens cushions at mydesertcottage and it has inspired my spring and summer collection. I found the gloves in a charity shop and the mice are in charge of mouse house tales.

I made the sparkly hair comb for The Swan Queen in a dance school production. I also made 16 white feather headresses fo the corp de ballet, I found feathers in my house for months afterwards. Never mind I am told white feathers are sent by the angels watching over us.

Thanks to all the white wednesdays it cheers up the midweek!

Monday, 29 March 2010

Quilts at the Victoria and Albert Museum

Phew! what a busy Friday!

I started out on the 6-30 train to London, arriving at 9am. An early start I know but that means I get lots of time in town. It seems in London at least spring has arrived. It was warm and sunny with the first early blossom on the trees in the parks.

First stop, the Aveda salon for a long overdue appointment with my lovely hairdresser Liene, she turns up the glamour in me every time I see her. I always leave a relaxed new woman. Thank you Liene!

Its a great treat to meet my friend Liz, we don't meet very often but always seem to carry on the conversation where we last left off. She and I both have a love of quilting so a visit to the exhibition at the V&A was a must.

The quilts were a real inspiration, I particularly loved the bed hangings that are the first thing you see as you go in. The patience needed to piece all those clam shells for such a large piece is amazing.

I was moved by two of the exhibits, the grandmothers flower garden quilt made by young women and girls, prisoners of war in the Changi camp and the male prisoners at Wandsworth prison in London who found peace and calm through there quilting.

If you can get to London to see this exhibit you won't be disappointed, I will certainly be going back for another visit before it closes in the summer.
You can get more info at the Victoria and Albert Museum web site.

After a pot of Earl Grey tea in Harrods we enjoyed a very late lunch and lots of memories before going off to catch my train home, which I nearly missed buying these beautiful Peaony Roses.
I jumped on the train just as the guard was blowing his whistle, again phew!!!

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

The Mermaid of Zennor.

What a treat we had on Saturday evening watching the Duchy Ballets new production of the Cornish folktale 'The Mermaid of Zennor'.

Zennor is a village on the north Cornish coast, The mermaid was said to have fallen in love with Matthew, a choir boy and lured him into the sea after hearing his beautiful singing. You can see the image of the mermaid carved in the church at Zennor.

The Duchy ballet whose home is in Cornwall this tale and created a visual feast for the senses, the music, the set, the lighting and most of all the dancing and characterisation were wonderful.

The second part of the programme was an adaptation of Sleeping Beauty, this finished the evening before the after show party and a long drive home.

My grandson Joe has danced for the last two seasons with Duchy ballet and missed dancing this year, he hopes to be dancing in next years production of the Nutcracker.

Thursday, 18 March 2010

A real mouse tale

My brother who is a piano tuner and restorer came for his usual cup of coffee this morning before going of to collect a damaged piano part to work on.

A mouse had used the inside of a large victorian upright Bluthner piano as a winter residence to shelter from the cold of a Dartmoor winter. The musical rascal had chewed various areas to make his home more comfortable.

Now the weather is milder he has moved back outside to his summer quarters!

Sorry no pictures!!!

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

As the weather was so lovely and as it was Mothers day I took myself for a walk round the beautiful gardens at Dartington Hall. They were a favourite with my mother.

The crocuses are late this year but the spring sunshine has brought them out. Crocus lawns are spectacular.

This one forms a circle around this wonderful old tree. The purples and white and yellows of the crocuses with the sunshine coming trough the branches of the tree was quite magical.

The trees in this part of England are decorated with lichens in amazing colours ranging from soft blue greens to vibrant yellows.

Its great to capture pictures of the garden but impossible for you to smell the scents of these spring shrubs. this Daphne odorata sends its perfume all around the garden encouraging you to find the source of its heady fragrance.

Walking along the small enclosed area of witchhazels is a feast for the senses. These pretty feathery flowers are a joy to see and smell.

I'm really excited to be going to London next week to the Victoria and Albert Museum to see the exhibition of quilts in the collection. I catch the 6.30am train so I can enjoy a long day in the capital. I just love it!

Keep watch for a full report on the day!

Thursday, 11 March 2010

Tales of the Easter Bunny

Hey, the sun is still shining and I've been busy at my sewing machine. I made my first rabbit with Jo Colwill at Cowslip Workshops and she has been a firm favourite. As where ever you shop is deep in Easter eggs I was inspired to make another rabbit to deliver eggs to all those chocolate lovers.

Why oh why are easter eggs on sale so early. I think its to tempt us to buy early and be prepared. In truth we eat those early buys ourselves and then have to rush out and buy some more. Go on tell me you have never done that!
If you would like this rabbit for yourself or for someone really special you can find her for sale in my Folksy shop.

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

My Mouse House

Hurray, the sun is shining and spring is round the corner (hopefully). My tiny apartment is full of light.

Pandora, is my favourite angel, she sits and watches over me as I stitch and sew. I wish she could grant a wish at the end of the day and as if by magic my room is tidy.

This is my workspace before tidying, I have lots of work in progress and my head is always one step ahead, I am working on a baby collection, as you can see I just love Patchwork quilts. I have just started using machine embroidery on my quilts, it rather like eating peanuts, once you start you can't stop. Its great and takes up less of my precious time.

See this quilt in my folksy shop soon, It's called Dragonflies. I made it as a Tummy Time quilt for baby. It would be nice to snuggle under for a story or just as a bed topper.

I always keep a quilt in the car. Mine is usually covering slumbering teenagers.

My sewing corner has great light for hand quilting. My chair is comfy and I can watch the world go by from the window.

My bedroom is my santuary at the end of the day. I can relax with a good book then sleep under a beautiful quilt and dream of tomorrows designs.

Sweet dreams to you all and remember,
'Quilters turn scraps into Treasures'