Tag Archives: Hand sewing

Feeling hot, hot, hot…

It’s been hot this week. Really hot. And humid. Bleurgh! 25°C (77°F) is about my limit, but it’s been way up in the 30s recently, and there is pretty much no air conditioning here in Switzerland. So whilst all my sun-worshipping friends are basking away and topping up their tans, I’ve been wilting, like the delicate English flower that I am 😉

I had hoped to do some more free motion quilting this week, but who wants to be manoeuvring a big quilt under a small sewing machine in all this heat? Not me! So, a change of plan… I’ve moved all the fans we own into one room, put the shutters down and whiled away several hot and sticky afternoons stitching together hexie flowers for my Grandmother’s Flower Garden quilt. So far, I’ve sewn all 14 yellow flowers (7 with little polka dots and flowers, 7 with big flowers and no polka dots…), and I’m about to move on to another colour. Get me!


Despite the heat, I did manage to get some machine sewing done this week, mainly in the evenings when it’s cooled down a little.

Last Thursday, the second block of my Fat Quarter Shop Mystery Block of the Month arrived, which reminded me that I hadn’t made a start on Block one yet… So this week, both blocks got made. I’ve never been a huge fan of basket quilts, but having made these two blocks, I’m starting to change my mind. I think they’re lovely!

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I also thought it would be fun to make a new skirt to take to Barcelona next week, so I dug out my Emaline skirt pattern from Sew Serendipity, which I’ve been wanting to make for a while. I decided to use this beautiful brightly coloured Kaffe Fassett print. I’d initially bought it to use as a quilt backing for what I’d planned to be a bed-sized quilt, but as the quilt came together, I changed my mind and decided to make it lap-sized instead. Happily this meant there was plenty of backing fabric left over to be re-purposed as a beautiful summer skirt!

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The skirt itself went together reasonably quickly. I had to do a bit of adjusting – the pattern is designed for someone 5’4″ tall, whereas I’m a smidge over 5’10” –  and I ended up lining it to help prevent creasing, but I’m very pleased with the outcome. In fact I’ve already worn it! It’s so light and cool to wear, and really comfortable too, that it looks like I’ll be making this pattern over and over again. And maybe wearing this skirt will motivate me to get out the original quilt top and backing, and finally make a start on quilting it! Well, you never know…

Linking on up to WIP Wednesday, despite limited progress!

A busy week all round

It’s been a busy week here in Lausanne, and weather wise very hot and sticky. Yuk! It’s been so muggy that the kitties haven’t even had the energy to be naughty… Mimi Bubba has spent the week lying on her back showing off her kitty bits to all and sundry, while Mr. Boy has been lying in the remnants of his favourite cardboard box, looking like a scarecrow.

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So it would seem unlikely that I would spend my time sewing. Mais non! I have actually been very busy this week…

First of all, I’ve been working on my sundress, which is now nearly finished. The hem is done and the zip’s inserted. It’s made out of a beautiful Valori Wells cotton voile, underlined with plain white cotton batiste, and about to be lined in a gorgeous peach-coloured viscose. I’m desperate to get in finished in time for our trip to Barcelona at the end of the month.


As for quilting, well, I was starting to feel guilty about the pile of tops in my cupboard that need finishing. I always think they look so pretty when I’ve finished piecing them, and I’m convinced that I’ll ruin them with my inexpert machine quilting. But, as has been pointed out to me on numerous occasions, I’ll never get better if I don’t practice. So I decided to stipple the baby quilt I made with some of the fabric leftover from Baby Chase’s star quilt, firstly because it’s reasonably small to start with, and also because it has no intended recipient as yet, so it could always be used as a picnic blanket if it went horribly wrong. And here are the results…

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It’s actually not too bad, and although I still have some problems with thread tension and stitch length in places, practice makes perfect, as they say, and it certainly got better the nearer I got to the end of it. All I have to do now is finish the binding and it’s done. Yippee!

I’ve also made good progress on the Flumpagon quilt – so called because it’s made of hexagons, and some of the fabric has elephants on it…


So far, I’ve pieced the hexagons in halves, and now I’m trying to work out a pleasing layout so I can sew them into rows and then put the rows together. As always, Mimi Bubba has been lending a helping hand…

Mimi and flumpagon quilt

And talking of hexagons, I’ve also been working on my English paper piecing. It was so hot on Sunday that RR and I took a boat trip from Neuchatel to Yverdon-les-Bains. It was baking hot on land, but there was a glorious breeze to cool you down when the boat got moving. I managed to while away the afternoon admiring the beautiful scenery and basting more hexies – bliss!

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Well, yet another week has literally zoomed by, so I’m linking up again with Lee at Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday.

And by the way, the second installment of my Grand Reportage is up on the France Patchwork blog – hop on over and check out some of RR’s cool quilt photography 🙂