Sunday, 9 November 2014

Christmas come early


Taps screen and blows cobwebs off the blog. Is anyone out there?

So tonight I was quietly minding my own business, catching up on my blog reading when I read a post about the latest edition of fat quarterly e-zine. Well I completely missed all communication announcing its release so dashed over to download my copy immediately.

This Christmas edition is a special one for me as I have a project in it *squee* Christmas really has come early to the Poppins household! 

I'm still a bit giddy from seeing my name in print for the first time and seeing something I made out there for all to enjoy. 

There are some amazing projects to make in this edition and I'm particularly loving the styling/layout this time round. Now, what to make first?..........

Thursday, 2 October 2014

An apology

Of sorts.....

Life is busy right now. Working 2 jobs (2 roles at the same place at least) juggling night shift with 5am starts, coping with the upheaval of 2 bathroom reno's plus a hectic social schedule means my sewing has slipped.

For that I apologise.

I have *several* outstanding commitments, not least:

Bee blocks, several (hangs head in shame)
Baby quilts (gifts)
An update to a bag for a friend
Blogging - including the stitch gathering & swap stuff
Guild prep - eek
Chasing my Team Poppins peops who have not done a mosaic yet
Stalking my IG mini swap partner and generally catching up on Flossy's group

And let's not mention the "C" word shall we?!!!

Hoping that this post will prompt/shame me into action!

Watch this space.

Sunday, 14 September 2014

Days out

With sewing people are the bestest!

If you need me I'll be at the stitch gathering today.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Around the world blog hop

A couple of weeks ago I was asked by Lou if I wanted to take part in this blog hop. Naturally I said yes as I thought it would be a good opportunity to dust off the old blog, cos let's face it, it's been a while!

What am I working on?

Right now I've just finished 2 big quilts that have been wip's for over a year each. So instead of taking a well earned break, I've started the baby quilt by Katy (I'm a ginger monkey) featured in issue 2 of quilt now magazine. The blocks are all done and the first row sewn together. It'll get finished on Wednesday ready for gifting on Thursday. (last minute much?)

I'm also being kept busy being a swap momma on the IG Mini Swap as well as trying to stalk my partner as a swapee!

How does my work differ from others of its genre?

I'm not sure it does to be honest. Obviously we all have colours, designs and designers we all prefer and that is reflected in my work. I'm not one for jumping on a bandwagon just because everyone else is but if I like something then count me in!

Why do I create what I do?

Because it makes me happy. Simple as that. Since starting this crazy quilting journey just over 2 years ago I've become part of an amazing online community, made some fantastic friends and been exposed to some fantastic opportunities.

How does my creating process work?

Along the lines of, this is awesome, this is tricky, this is shit, I'm shit, actually this might be okay, this is awesome!

Seriously though, I find my best ideas come as I'm trying to get to sleep and I just have to hope I remember them in the morning.

So that's it from me. I'm passing the baton on to Sheila aka budsmam who blogs about her quilting adventures over on and will post her answers next Monday.

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Monday, 16 June 2014

You can call me queen bee....

And baby I'll rule, I'll rule, I'll rule ....

You can thank me later for that little earworm

So team LBQB, July is my month as queen bee and after much to-ing and fro-ing I've finally settled on the single wedding ring quilt block! It's featured in Love Patchwork & Quilting issue 6 if you have a copy but if you don't, fear not I'll put all the deets below.

First though, let's talk colours.....

I've picked a design seeds pallet but don't worry about sticking too rigidly to it. I'm basically after bright pinks, purples (any) or aqua blues for the feature colour and low volume for the background. I don't mind if you use solids or prints and if you want to go scrappy and use a few different fabrics then go for it! The only thing I'd ask is that if you are going scrappy, can you stick to one colour value for the colour bit of the block ie scrappy purples or scrappy pinks but not a mixture (please).

I've put a couple of examples of low volume below too (only because the blogger app doesn't let you put pics in the body of your post for some reason!)

Cutting requirements:

1 x 4.5 inch square
4 x 2.5 x 4.5 inch rectangles
4 x 3 3/8  inch squares (three and three eighths of an inch)

8 x 2 7/8 inch squares (two and seven eighths of an inch)
4 x 2.5 x 4.5 rectangles

Construction (use a quarter inch seam)

1. Cut all background squares in half along the diagonal to form 16 triangles

2. Take the 3 3/8 inch coloured squares and sew a triangle to 2 of the opposing sides.

3. Press open (i did seams into middle) and trim off dog ears (the wee sticky out bits).

4. Repeat for the 2 remaining sides of the square & trim. Finished square in a square should be 4.5 inches

5. Pair colour & background rectangles and sew together along long edge

6. Lay out pieces in a 9 patch formation and sew together to form a row. 

7. Sew rows together to make a 12.5 inch block. (my wonky test block is shown below, not sure it'll make the cut!) 

Hope you have fun making this next month. Can't wait to see all of your finished blocks!!

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

An actual finish!

So I actually finished something today!

It's a giant 24 inch cushion that I started and very nearly finished last summer.

A couple of "design issues" have seen it languish in my WIP pile ever since. I thought I would get it finished as part of the Q1 FAL but I didn't. I'm ashamed to say I didn't even attempt to! I have made progress on the other items on my list but that's another post for another day.

Today I machine sewed down the remaining quarter of the binding and hand sewed the binding to the back. I'd already made a giant insert so it was a relatively easy and quick finish.


Pattern from simply solids
Fabric from simply solids & pink castle fabrics
Finished size, 24 inches square

Friday, 18 April 2014

Q1 FAL Update

So, I failed.

I failed to complete anything on my FAL list. I failed to link up to the end of the Q1 FAL and I failed to link up with the Q2 FAL. Go me! Lol.

Anyway, it's not a complete disaster. My giant star quilt is sandwiched and basted and waiting to be quilted. Might need to put my big girl pants on for that.

My Katherines Wheel star quilt is basted and is being hand quilted, hoop and all. I must admit, I'm really enjoying hand quilting. I take it to my weekly sewing circle and sit happily for a couple of hours sewing and chatting with the other ladies. I can't help but think of times gone by with women sitting round a giant frame each working on a section of quilt.

And the wonky star cushion, well, we'll quickly skim over that as I've not even looked at it since, despite it being a relatively quick finish.

Obviously I've sneaked in a few other makes (see previous 2 blog posts) as well as bee blocks and a cushion for the mother but this quarter it's a "must do better" for Mrs Poppins!

Thursday, 17 April 2014

It's a girl!

No, before you ask, I'm not expecting!!!

Remember my last post (from a month ago - must blog more regularly) where I said, I was waiting to hear about my other friend....... Well, later that day on the 18th March she had another wee girl.  A happy, contented little thing, who I've had lovely cuddles from.

So, in time honoured tradition, baby gifts were bought and what better receptacle to put them in than a Noodlehead divided basket? I picked colours sympathetic to the nursery so went with Essex linen in flax for the outside and grabbed some pink, blue, green floral fabric from my stash for the inside. I felt more confident doing this a second time round but I feel the outside is a bit plain as I omitted the optional outer pocket. Hey ho.

I also had to make big sister a gift and as she is being kicked out of the nursery soon, I made a cushion to go in her new Minnie mouse themed big girl room.

I made the mouse template myself and used a fancy applique stitch on my machine to attach it to the background. I also fused the back to some vilene (interfacing) as I find it stops the edges from fraying so much. The bow was added in the same way and I did a simple envelope back for quickness.

Big sister shouted Minnie when she opened her present and I enjoyed a lovely cuddle from her too!

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Oh baby!

All of my friends are having babies! First ones, second ones and all at the same time it would seem. Rather selfishly they are keeping the "flavour" to themselves until the new arrival, well, arrives..... (disclaimer: some of them are, whilst others choose not to find out) ..... which means I can't do flavour specific sewing until bubba arrives ��

Anyhoo I digress. One of my school chums had her second wee girl a couple of weeks ago and I went to visit them last week. So of course the day before (nothing like a deadline to get over procraftination!) I got to sewing for the new arrival and her big sister.

I'd bought the noodlehead divided basket pattern some time ago and thought it would make a good gift when filled with muslin's, wipes and the like. The pattern was really easy apart from when it came to joining the divider to the lining. The pattern requires you to sew in a straight line towards a dot (marked on pattern piece) and then pivot with needle down on that dot. Simples! Well if I'd measured the distance from the edge of the pattern to the dot before I'd started, yes. Instead, I was relying on the pattern instructions to tell me that the seam allowance would change here from the previously required quarter inch to the now required half inch. It didn't btw.  Hey ho. We live and learn eh? And I've now written it on the pattern for future reference as the finished basket is amazing and I want to make 20 more! Just as well I have lots more preggo friends......

After dinner I started and finished the lovely owl cushion for new big sister as I didn't want her to feel left out. Thanks to Lynz for bringing the pattern (from etsy) to my attention. It was a fairly quick and easy pattern to whip up.

The photo is rubbish and doesn't do the fabric justice. The background is the pink from Sweetwater noteworthy. So a much more bright pink irl.

Both gifts have been given and I got some  awesome snuggly baby cuddles last week (aww) and as I write this I'm eagerly awaiting news from another friend who went in this morning to have her baby �� so expect to see more baby related sewing here soon!

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

LBQB Flickr Silence

This blog post is for the members of the Little Blog Quilt Bee but if you're not a member and want to find out more about me then feel free to read on.

I've been having a few issues with Flickr and can't at present join our little group. The lovely Vanessa is trying to rectify this for me but it means that I'm unable to post comments onto group discussions. I've seen you've all been introducing yourselves so thought would post mine here so you don't think I'm being rude and ignorant!

Hi, I'm Claire. I've been sewing for a little over 18 months now. I mainly do patchwork but also sew bags, pouches, fabric baskets, cushions and the like. I'm a member of a lovely little guild, with Sheila, and enjoy attending sewing/quilting related events.

I'm married with 2 fur babies and live on a farm in the countryside in Scotland near to St Andrews. I hail from Edinburgh originally and moved to fife 10 years ago when Edinburgh property prices got the better of us!

I trained at university to be a primary teacher but didn't go into that profession and so spent the next 12 years working in financial services, in Edinburgh, in various different roles - customer service, sales, training & compliance then 7 years in marketing. I now work part time but was fortunate enough to have over a year off in between, where I started sewing.

I started blogging to talk about my sewing achievements and disasters and enjoy reading other blogs too, although I find instagram has led to fewer blog posts (from myself and others).

Anyhoo that's enough from me for just now :-)

Thursday, 13 February 2014


I've joined a bee! A British bee.  For people with little blogs*

The fantastic Lou came up with the idea and is doing a cracking job of getting us all organised! 

Month's have been assigned, I'm queen in July and naturally we are kicking off in March with Lou being queen.  She has chosen the wonky star block and we are all eager to get started.

Here's a note of all my fellow hive mates and where they blog (hopefully all the links work), do pop over and say hi if you get the chance!












* Just as a side note, does anyone know how we now track how many blog followers we have? I know i don't have many but with the demise of Google reader and the sudden rush to adopt Feedly or Bloglovin or A N Other reader type device, how can we actually tell?  I know that I now follow blogs using my new reader which I don't think shows up in your stats.  How annoying!

I'd certainly be interested in hearing your thoughts on this! 

Friday, 7 February 2014

Hello, Kitty!

Having had my eye on these for a while,  the perfect excuse came along earlier this week and with 40% off it would have been rude not to!!! 

Hello Kitty and Liberty, what's not to love?!

Friday, 17 January 2014

Q1 FAL List - its all about the stars

Linking up with Katy for this bunch of WIPs that I hope to get finished during Q1.

(apologies in advance for poor photo placement but the blogger app doesn't seem to allow you to add photos mid post!)

1. Giant star quilt top. Started last August and got the top finished in a couple of days. I even basted it and started quilting which killed my old machine :-( .  Quilting has been removed and top is ready to be re basted and quilted.

2. Katherine's wheel star quilt top. Needs a backing made and to be basted and quilted. I started this in October 2012 after winning the Nel Whatmore fabric and got the top finished last summer. As I plan to hand quilt it, its not progressed any since then!

3. Wonky stars giant cushion. Started summer 2013 following the simply solids sew solid crew stash club pattern. Needs a small piece added to one of the backing panels and re bound.

That feels enough for now given I have some must do sewing projects too!

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Blogged - a Christmas finish (well sort of)

A finish! Whoop!

My sew-jo is severely lacking at the minute. Don't get me wrong I'm still thinking about sewing things and lusting after fabric online but the thought of sitting in front of my machine and sewing, well, just isn't appealing.

I had a move around of my sewing room a wee while ago and the space doesn't feel "right" somehow. Maybe I need to shift it all about again.

Anyhoo on to the finish :-) a lovely lap sized quilt for my mum and dad. Technically this was mostly finished and gifted at Christmas. All that needed doing was the binding sewn down on the back. Had I pulled my finger out it could have been done in 2013 but *meh*.  So queue a visit from the folks and their imminent departure this afternoon and lo and behold, I finished sewing the binding down last night and joined the ends this morning! Last minute, moi??!!

Quilt stats:
Made using an in from the cold layer cake and some kona snow, with kona holly for the binding.
Finished size approx 60 inches sq
Backed with good old Ikea britten numbers.