New things….

Just recently, I finished my first ever knitted cowl. It was a very rewarding experience. Not only was it an easy pattern, it was a magical thing of elegance, beauty and sparkle. It was a Dragon Wing Cowl. I got the pattern  from Ravelry. It was designed by Jessie Rayot. I’ll provide the link here:

See the pretty sparkles? I used Cascade Hollywood yarn in the colour called Chive. It has built in bling, and it glistens just like I’ve always imagined dragon wings would in real life! It was made for my middle daughter for her birthday, and she loved it, I’m pleased to say. There will be several more of these in my future, I’m sure!

Another new thing was fusible applique… Now, owing to the fact that a lack of foresight had me having three children whose birthdays are all very close together (two of the three being only three days apart) and having a husband off work with an injured leg, I was on a very restricted time-frame to complete the lap quilt I recklessly decided to make for my youngest. I had three days, once the dust settled, and those three days were spent almost exclusively at my sewing machine! Thank goodness I’d already done most of the preparation! I managed to finish it three hours before midnight.

The pattern I chose (because my daughter liked it) was called Daisy Vines by Nancy Mahoney. You can get the pattern from Martingale as part of an ebook called Fast, Fusible Flower Quilts. (link:

I added a dragonfly near the bottom for a touch of whimsy. My youngest daughter loves it. I couldn’t wait for the next morning, so as soon as it was out of the dryer I gave it to her! Less than two minutes later….


Yep, worth every fevered, gruelling second! That’s why I do what I do!


Scrappy Mountain Quilt – my latest WIP.

As insomnia tightens it’s grip upon me for the night I decided that it would be a good time to let you all see what I am presently working on….. or what I had been, until the Meniere’s Monster reared it’s ugly head with a vengeance!

It’s been about 2 weeks now I think, since I was last able to work on my quilt (yes, finally this one is for me!) and I feel the familiar frustration welling up inside me as the desire to keep going whilst the mojo is still happening, despite the overwhelming urge to fall flat on my face in any given direction, and vomiting my heart out grows ever more insistent.

Isn’t it lovely? I’m making it entirely on Helga, my 1940 Singer 15K-88 treadle. I love the process of these  Scrappy Mountain Blocks – pair up, slice, sew, square up, slice some more, rearrange and sew up. I’m using a layer cake called  “Fresh Flowers” by Deb Strain paired with some white-on-white fabric. I’m really excited about this quilt! So far  I have about 4 rows done, with 3 more to go. I hope to be able to do some more tomorrow.  Even one pair of squares will be an accomplishment.

I’m determined to get this finished soon, so that I can begin the borders, the accompanying Scripture embroidery and the preparation for FMQ.

Watch this space for developments! Hopefully there’ll be some soon.

Gift making! It’s quite a process.

It still amazes me that there are people in the world who think it’s insulting to receive home made gifts, produce etc as a gift. That there are people out there who see no value in the thought, the planning, the angst, the jubilation – the process – that goes into such gifts. They don’t see the blood, sweat and tears behind the item. If I personally know any now, they hide it well.


These last few years as I have begun to progress in my sewing, embroidery and now Knitting I have purposed to try to have gifts predominantly home made over mass produced commercialised products. Each person is a unique individual and so should their gifts be.

I want the recipient to know they are loved, appreciated and thought about. You see….. it’s so easy to just buy something, wrap it and give it! It can be impersonal. See the item, think briefly of the person, buy, wrap, give….. and then it’s all over.

When someone makes something for you, you can be certain they’ve thought about you a LOT. Each stitch, pleat, pin and tuck; each paint stroke, stir of the Jam, batter etc that person has been planning, preparing, stock-piling, working – for YOU! And what’s more, they’ve done it because you mean something to them.


So, as I finish my Christmas sewing and Knitting, think of a few small other stocking stuffers I can make as well I now feel the familiar anxiety of the crafter – will they like it? Will they use it? Will they see the days, the hours of love in each and every millimetre?

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I hope everyone who reads this has a safe and Happy Christmas, whether that be with family, friends, strangers or on your own. However your Christmas is, may it be a Happy one!

A slight digression…..

My blog was originally to chronicle my Quilting journey, and, on the whole, it still does. It’s just that, lately, some other crafts have crept in unawares, and some other sewing interests like Bag Making and surprisingly Knitting! Here is my new Quilted knitting bag I made. I just had to make it. After all, we all need the right tools, don’t we??

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I have (finally) finished the Fathers’ Day Beanie for my husband. Not one word did he say about it’s tardiness in appearing. It went straight on his head and stayed there until day’s end (which is a sure sign he is very happy with the result!)


Does he care that my first 8 row pattern repeat was….umm…..less than perfect? No. I made it for him and that makes it special. For those of you out there wondering why people craft, or why they make things for a zillion dollars that they could buy mass produced for 2 – this is a classic example of why!

It’s the thrill of choosing the design, (this one pre-approved by hubby!) the colours, the yarn and the making of the item. It’s the anticipation of seeing the work finished – of holding it in your hands and having that tangible object, now no longer a picture on a page and the joy of giving it to it’s intended recipient. It’s seeing their delight and appreciation of all your work to make that item FOR THEM! Folks, that’s a buzz you can’t bottle! That’s the WHY!


Knitting is also addictive and I’ve already started a second Beanie, this time for one of our Grandsons. I hope he likes his as much as his Grandad did his!


Introducing Toriska’s new pattern The Flourish Clutch!


I was chuffed to bits to be accepted as a tester (my first time ever!!!) for the Flourish Clutch. A nice easy pattern and a whole lot of fun to make. Yes, I was binge watching The A Team whilst constructing this bag. Blame my daughter WR Gingell for that. She got me hooked on them a month or so ago….


I couldn’t wait for a frame to arrive, so I pilfered one from a purse I picked up at a Thrift Store for 50c some time ago.

So without further ado – here she is – my Pretty as a Peacock Flourish Pouch! Give a twirl for the blog readers sweetie!……..

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This clever pattern is gorgeous from ANY angle – even underneath!

The Flourish Clutch comes in 3 sizes – Small, Medium and Large. This little cutie is the Large size.

Here’s a shot or 2 of me carrying said Flourish Clutch so that you can get an indication of the size and versatility of the Large size:

100_0739 Me and my bag                                Glenys with Flourish Clutch crouching


The Flourish Clutch makes her debut Friday the 13th of November (US time) along with her sister The Curvaceous Clutch, which is an equally lovely pattern with a totally different look to this one.

You can purchase the pattern via Etsy
Craftsy shop
The introductory price is $6 and goes up to $8 Monday.

Wow! Hasn’t time flown. It’s been ages since I blogged. Life and health often get in the way like that, but I am determined to be a more frequent blogger, maybe fortnightly to see how I go.

Here is a collage of some of the stuff I’ve been sewing/quilting since my last post. Of course, these are only the Bionic Gear Bag Notions Totes that I have made in that time. I love these bags. I still have at least two more to make for my Applique and my Embroidery to go in. The last one was for my Mother in Law for her birthday this week, one was for a bag swap (the one with the sea-life charms and hexies on the front) and 2 were for me – one for English Paper Piecing and one for Felting.

BGB Collage

Bionic Gear Bags were the invention of Sally Thompson (aka RipStitcher) from Craftsy. You have only to google the name of the bag for the pattern to come up! It is fantastic and I love making them.


I’ve also made a few Necessary Clutch Wallets (by Emmaline’s Patterns) and am equally enarmoured of this pattern. Such a clever and simple way to construct a complicated looking pattern, and this is exactly what both patterns share, a simplicity in construction that belies their complicated appearance. Kudos to Sally Thompson and Janelle Mc Kay for their brilliance!

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Where to now you ask? Now, I learn (hopefully) to knit. Not just knit, but knit right-handed! I am predominantly left-handed, and already do some things right-handed so I don’t see many issues with this. I have done a little practice knitting last year (some squares and this pathetic, but colourful, little bag)  but not a great deal.

 (I warned you it was pathetic!)


Hubby needs a new beanie, so I said I’d try to make one for him now that he has approved a masculine (and thankfully simple) knitting pattern. Hopefully my next blog will be about said hat, and also the obligatory knitting bag that I will now have to make for my new craft of knitting……… yes, I know, it is terrible that I will have to make yet another craft bag, but these things happen.

Until next time! Keep crafting!

Another quilt done and dusted (and a bag or two, or three)…

Well it’s been some time since I last posted. That has been mainly due to flare ups of a few of my medical issues all at once and consequently I am fighting post flare-up fatigue and residual dizziness. However, I’ve not been totally idle.


I have joined the 2015 Bag of the Month club and have half finished January’s bag. I am just waiting on handles to arrive to finish it. You can find details of the 2015 Bag Of the Month Clubhere:

I have also made a Bionic Gear Bag, a stupendously clever and practical concoction of Craftsy’s RipStitcher. Her versatile Bionic Gear Bag Notions Tote that can be used for just about anything can be found here:

BGB full with one dodad

Before that I made a Sew Together bag for a Christmas present and another quilt, this time for Hubby for Christmas. Hubby’s quilt was a labour of love (as all my quilts are really!) He chose the Scripture verse even though he didn’t know what for, and as he is uber-conservative I searched high and low for a fabric range he would consider “masculine enough.” I found some Moda “Piecemakers” by Kathy Schmitz. All ecru, blues and browns and not a flower in sight! He was delighted.The block I settled on was “Rail Fence.” I used 100% wool batting and Gutermann thread for the FMQ on the blocks and Aurifil thread for the border. Out of the two threads, I much preferred the Aurifil. My machine did too.


Through this process I learned about Top Stitch needles – fantastic little things that they are! I needed a needle with a bigger eye for the Gutermann thread because it would keep snapping from my needle every inch or so – it was so frustrating and demoralising!! (By the way, I can totally recommend being in a facebook quilting group. I joined the “Quilt along with Pat Sloan” facebook group and the people there are fantastic and always willing to pitch in with good advice when you send out an SOS like I did in this situation.)

I’m behind on my Sew Sweet Simplicity BOM but will be able continue on with that at my own pace. Right now I’m gearing up for the onslaught of birthday sewing….. I really should have spaced my children’s birthdays a little wider apart – we have 3 within 5 1/2 weeks (and 2 of those 3 days apart!) Major planning fail there!……….. as if I could really do anything about that! LOL!

100_9595Here’s hoping everything is just dandy in your world today and that you can get some sewing, writing, painting, pottery, or whatever it is you like to do done.

Tenosynovitis and Tendonitis blues…….

After an active Saturday in the garden 3 weeks ago, and a heavy week of sewing straight after, I managed to give myself Tenosynovitis in the forearm and wrist and De Quervain’s Tendonitis in the thumb all at the same time! (At least I was thorough!)


The point is, I have been banned from the sewing room by my GP who told me to “take up reading for the next 3 weeks.” My GP has a magic little laser acupuncture device and assured me that my arm, wrist and thumb tendons would respond well to a comprehensive zapping session or two or three, and so they did.

I still have another week left of my ban and I have been good and not   sewn anything (well, not a lot! I did do a wee placemat size quilt top, but that doesn’t really count, right?)


I am glad I got Emery’s bag done and the backpack for one of my daughters to go shopping on the mainland with. I now have an even bigger pile of stuff to be sewn and/or quilted, so I hope I can get it all done in time. Christmas is galloping forward with a vengeance!


I’m having bags of fun with patchwork and embroidery….

Latest project: New church bag (sorry to my facebook friends who’ve already seen this!)

Lynette Anderson has this wonderful book (actually she has quite a few wonderful books, but I digress!) called “Country Cottage Quilting” with lovely projects to do. As soon as I saw this particular bag called “Birdhouse Bag” I simply had to try it, and as it would be just the right size for my Bible and other things I need to take with me it just had to be my new church bag!

Here is the finished bag:



Now I am working on a matching glasses case, not yet finished. The quilting and binding should be able to be done today though, as I just have the dragonfly head to complete….



After that, I reckon it’ll be my Grandson Emery’s long awaited backpack. Due to the Meniere’s being a bit more horrid than usual, I had to take a break from sewing and that means I then had to “get back into my sewing groove” or “psych myself up” to get my creativity to the level I need to start on it. That’s the way I work. If I were to start on it without doing that carnage and mayhem would ensue and there’d be general crankiness on my part because said bag would be turning out like unidentified debris! Now that I have my creative juices flowing again and I’m in the right place mentally for that bag – it will happen and soon! Not long now, Emery…….

PS. Glasses case is now complete………… what do you think?

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I love it when a project just comes together……

A while ago I downloaded a tutorial for an Armchair Caddy from (under patterns; August 18, 2008 – you will need to go through quite a few pages to get there or just google “hugsnkisses armchair caddy” as it’s faster!) I put it in my file of things to make “one day.” Since then I bravely decided that I would also like to learn to embroider – real embroidery stuff, not like the sampler I was forced to do (and managed to get away without finishing) in Grade 4 which looked like it was sewn by an unco-ordinated blind person on a really rough ocean!


Anyway, I found I liked embroidery after a gap of 39 years. It’s not perfect yet, and may never be, but I enjoy it, and, remembering that said Armchair Caddy contained embroidery, and since I wanted to make something useful, I pulled out the pattern and set to work.

I found the embroidery pattern was actually too large for the pattern pieces, so I just blew up the pattern pieces (NOT the embroidery pattern!!) to 110% on my copy/printer and it fit beautifully. I did have to add another 20″ to the length of the binding also, so if you want to try this lovely project and have it the same size I did, you will need 60″ of 2″ binding, not 40″.

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Here is my version of it that I made for my daughter Naomi for Christmas, but I couldn’t wait that long so gave it to her early!! (Christmas in July – don’t judge me!) She gave a delighted squeal, stuck a hand in each pocket and said “It’s lovely! Is it an oven mitt?” I tried to act offended, but could no longer contain the laughter that was welling up inside me! (Oh dear, my lovely blonde daughter!!) She’d never seen one before. She’s more a needle craft girl, not a sewing girl, so she can be forgiven her ignorance on armchair caddies! I wanted hers to be bright and cheerful and I think I’ve managed it. What do you think?

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Yeah, those scallops are a little wonky (especially the other end) but in my defense it’s my first try ever at turn under applique or whatever it’s name is…….. I call it “rustic!” 🙂