A little surprise…don’t tell!

Hello everyone,

I’ve been making a little birthday present for my Great Niece. Her birthday isn’t until next month but I like to be organised you know. It’s a very simple, lined drawstring bag.


I absolutely adore this fabric. I bought it just after my Great Niece was born and always had in mind that one day I’d make her a bag from it. Soon she will be four years old. Those turtles are so cute! I lined  it with the same solid blue as I made the drawstrings from and it has a box shaped base so it’ll stand up on its own.


All in all, a good afternoon’s sewing. I really enjoyed that 🙂

Avis x


SAL Update Block 8

Hello everyone,

It was touch and go as to whether I’d have anything much to show for the last three weeks in the cross stitch department but I made it!

First, this is what made me smile yesterday along with some crafty presents including a new cross stitch kit for a Christmas decoration, buttons for my stash and a handmade needle holder from my lovely friend Claire, not forgetting a gorgeous handmade card. There was also a new quilting ruler from my other half, sock knitting wool from my dear friend Lin (all shades of yummy purple), some Bali Pops and a quilting book from my sister ( she knows a challenge when she sees one!) and my daughter thought it was time to launch me into the 21st century with a smart phone. So now you can see why I was a little bit distracted from sewing yesterday. The recipe links for this cake and a baked cheesecake are in the comments below.

IMG_20150214_192049 (2)

Then, just when I thought my birthday celebrations were coming to an end, I received a phone call from a wonderful family friend, who lives half way around the world in India. Isn’t technology amazing? It was lovely to catch up with him at the end of a great day 🙂

Yes, stitching this block meant burning the midnight oil on my birthday last night but I really enjoyed having the deadline for once. I’d sewn the border a couple of days before and it was a good job I had.


This is how it looks with the other seven blocks.


The design is by Whispered by the Wind and both me and Claire are stitching it. All of the other SAL members are stitching something different. Even though my enthusiasm for stitching this piece is waning, I’m enjoying getting it done bit by bit and I’m glad I didn’t push it in a drawer and forget about it. It isn’t the fault of the design or the chart, it’s just that I have other things to do at the moment. Anyway, I really enjoyed the enforced sewing marathon yesterday.

The other crafters in the group are also posting updates today so do pop over to see what they’ve been up to.

We have a new SAL member to introduce this time. Please visit LucyAnn over at LucyAnn and Luna Craft. She is embarking on a Disney design. I’ll be cheering her along with that 🙂

The rest of the group can be found by clicking the following links.

Claire, Gun, Carole, Alison, Jule, Elizabeth, Wendy and Kate.

Our next update will be on 8th March 2015. We hope to see you then.

Avis x

Eye Candy for Fabric Lovers and a Puzzle!

Hi everyone,

Be warned! This post is full to busting of fabric photos. I make no excuses, my jaw is still on the floor since my daughter arrived home from India last night. I have been spoiled, THOROUGHLY spoiled and I just had to share some photos with you so you can imagine what I will be getting up to over the next few months. You have got no idea how pleased I am that she travels light with a large suitcase!

She was very fortunate to be invited to spend two months with her wonderful local host who made sure she ate well, travelled widely and generally got a taste of what life is really like in India with lots of fun along the way. It has to be the best way to see a new country, sample local culture and customs and make the most of any trip abroad.

If you want to read more about her trip, you can find it in her blog Sun and Cake.

Where’s the fabric, I hear you call….

The instructions were simple, please bring me fabric, sari silk, cotton, batiks, anything that I can make into lovely things. Here are some of the sari silks which are all from Salem in southern India.


I’m going to have so much fun with these.


The photos really don’t do them justice. The shimmer and lustre and silky softness is gorgeous.


Aren’t those tassels lovely?




There are several designs on each piece and they are all huge!



Now for the cottons, also from southern India Smile.


Exciting times are ahead!


The quality is fantastic, perfect for patchwork and quilting.




This style can be found on wall murals and works of art.


This one has an interesting chequered weave which doesn’t show up to the naked eye.





Some are block or screen printed with one or more dyes.




This one uses the batik technique with wax. There’s a whole rainbow of underlying colours.


This one is hand painted with gold dye.


The purple parade. You all know I love purple Smile


And finally, some hand painted cottons from Jaipur in northern India.


The pattern is very sparkly Smile


The north Indian fabrics are the same good quality, brilliant for all sewing projects.

Now for your puzzle….

This was another of my requests and I really didn’t expect my daughter to find one, let alone bring one home. I’m going to show you a few detailed photos and I want you to guess what it is that she brought me for my birthday which was on Valentine’s Day while she was away. All of the embroidery has been done by hand.












It would be impossible to show all of the details here so I’ve only picked out some of them. I have no idea how old it is but it is definitely not new. I can only imagine how many hours went into all of the stitching and I’ll treasure it forever Smile.

So, do you know what it is? Would you like to guess?

Have fun guessing!

And finally…. have you heard of the Holi Festival? If not, you can read about it here and see images here.

This is a photo of my daughter on the right and her host (the best tour guide in India) on the left during the Holi Festival. Fun, fun, fun Smile


Oh, to be young again!

Avis x

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