Monday, 13 June 2016

Visit to Orkney

Last week we had to travel up to the Orkney Islands (off the North Scottish coast) for the Oh! Bearded One's Aunts' funeral.

Tarring the roof of the hut she owned on Rousay

She was 10 days shy of her 91st birthday when she died so her life had been long and active. She was my Mother-in-Law's sister, so like us she was born in Sheffield but her connection with Orkney was a long one. She had first lived up there as a Vicar's wife in the 1960s/70s based in Kirkwall, then she returned in the 90's after her husband died, living in the hut they owned on Rousay. She had to move away again due to ill health so she could be near one of her daughters (she had 2 daughters and 2 sons) then she moved back again with her daughter 4 years ago. It gave her a new lease of life as she was so happy to be back.

We left Cheshire last Wednesday and drove to Edinburgh to see our son, we also stayed over in Edinburgh. We left there on Thursday morning at 07.30 and drove up to John O'Groats, to catch the ferry to St Margaret's Hope on South Ronaldsay, which where Aunty and her daughter live. 

John O'Groats 

The ferry - MV Pentalina

We stayed for 2 nights with the Vicar & his wife in the manse of St Margaret's Hope church

St. Margaret's Hope - South Ronaldsay

Aunty's funeral service was held in the church where her husband had been Vicar, in Kirkwall

After the funeral we all travelled to Tingwall to catch the ferry over to Rousay where she was to be buried.

The Rousay ferry

She is buried in a lovely graveyard overlooking a small loch on the island. One of her sons also lives on Rousay so the grave will be tended. 

After the wake and we had caught the ferry back to the mainland we had a drive around a small portion of the island and then stopped in Kirkwall to look at the poppies installation which was installed to commemorate the Battle of Jutland in 1916. 

The poppies were a small part of the display that was at the Tower of London in 2014

We left Orkney on the 07.45 ferry on Saturday morning and drove down country past Loch Ness to the Corriegour Lodge hotel on the side of Loch Lochy.

The hotel was lovely with stunning views.

Once we left the hotel on Sunday morning we carried on south, driving through Glen Coe and on to Loch Lommond

We arrived back in Cheshire about 5.30pm on Sunday evening.

Saturday, 4 June 2016


At the beginning of May DD, Little Gromit, Mum & I went on holiday to North Berwick in Scotland. We hired a flat above a shop on the High Street for a week. We have been here before, when my Dad was still alive but we stayed in the countryside outside North Berwick

On one of the days out we had, we went to Luss, which is a village on the banks of Loch Lomond. It was the nicest day we had and Little Gromit loved the ducks! 

Luss was used as a film set for the Scottish TV series 'Take the High Road' which used to be on English TV as well. I used to watch and I loved it, I was sorry when we could no longer get it. 

I haven't done any machine sewing during May at all but I have been working on these in the evenings. They are hexis from the book 'The New Hexagon' by Katja Merek.

I've prepared each hexi and it is in its' own little bag. There are 52 in the book.

I have decided I want to make more so I have started the process again!

I haven't done any work on 'The Splendid Sampler' other than print out some of the instructions, 


I am decorating! We have had a new fire and false chimney breast installed. The fire looks like a wood burner but is gas. I would have loved a wood burner but our house is a 1980s estate house and doesn't have a chimney so this was a good compromise. We have also bought a new oak cupboard

It used to look like this!

I am still in the process of decorating this room. It hasn't been done for some years so it is taking a while. I have already freshened up the bedrooms.

Monday, 16 May 2016

Uttoxeter Quilt Show - 2016

I was lucky enough to get a free ticket being given away on Facebook by a lady that wasn't able to go


here's my choice from this year's Uttoxeter quilt Show. I am afraid I've no details of the quilts, I'm too mean to buy a programme.

This year's winner!

I hope you've enjoyed them!

Saturday, 14 May 2016

Little quilt swap

Lori from Humble Quilts hosted a Little Quilt Swap in April 

The quilt I received came from Diane Knott, who is a quilt pattern designer, teacher and author. I felt very honoured to get a quilt from such a talented quilter!

I haven't decided where I am going to hang it yet. I want to change the colour of one of the walls in my sewing room so once I've done that I will hang it.

Tuesday, 22 March 2016

March update..

I have been very remiss in not posting about a swap I took part in back in February. 
It was organised by Tracey from 'Mad about Bags' and it was called 'Send a little love' - a heart shaped theme!

My partner was Kimberley of  'Creative Chaos', she lives in New Zealand.

There was chocolate but that has been eaten! also a nice pen, that I have mislaid at present! I used the heart shaped cookie cutters as templates for 2 blocks in my Splendid Sampler -  Thank you Kimberley!

This is what I sent Kimberley - I hope you don't mind me pinching your photo! Thank you!
(Kimberley's photo, as I forgot to take one before I sent the parcel)

I have also taken part in Kimberley's 2016 edition of 'Send us your country'

My partner for this swap was Melanie from 'The Patchwork Robin'. Melanie lives in Derby in the UK. Funnily enough I lived in Derby as a small child as my Dad worked for Roll Royce aerospace.

My parcel arrived this morning!

Thank you so much, Melanie, I love the pincushion and the covered buttons, the chocolate will go down a treat as well!

I've done some sewing too! This little quilt is made from a Moda 'Hello Luscious' charm pack that I've had in my stash for a while. I got the pattern from a magazine but I'm not sure which one as I had ripped the pages out and just kept them. 

Some more 'Splendid Sampler' blocks. I'm not caught up at present, I've got 2 & a half to do.

I am going to hand quilt them and 'quilt as you go'. Some ladies are putting lovely sashings on but doing wide sashings is going to make the quilt bigger than I want, by my calculation it will be around 70 inches square as it is!
I need to get cracking on the hand quilting as I will get too far behind.

I've got a pile of 'Speedwell' blocks coming on

and I've got another Christmas quilt cut out - this is 'Double Square Star' from Missouri Star Quilt Company. I love Jenny's 'You Tube' videos, they are easy to follow and the results are good.  

This quilt is also a Missouri Star Quilt Company one - 'Quatrefoil'. Jenny uses a layer cake for hers but I've used fat quarters. 

Right, I'm off to play catch up on my 'Splendid Sampler quilt