one down, several more to go

I have finished one of my secret patchwork projects for Christmas – yay!  Now, usually, I don’t share photos of secret sewing with you until the recipient has received but I am making an exception.

This is something I began in September and got put on hold because of shoulder problems, and then because it seemed to be jinxed and quilting was not going to plan.

However, I was making this for a special person, so I unpicked the quilting disaster and persevered.  It’s a lap quilt for my young niece and the chances of her popping onto my blog are zero. Now, I have to specify that my niece is a huge Dora fan . . . so I bought one metre of a Dora print, and the colours in that dictated my choice of fabric for the front.

for Mel 02

The Dora fabric is sky blue background, with bright pinks and purple.  There are also lots of butterflies flitting around.  I therefore used lots of sky blues, some purple, some bright pink AND even some fabric leftover from the tunic I made myself ^^

for Mel 01

My niece is a special-needs child, and in September, she became a boarder in a special centre.  Bearing this in mind, and that all her belongings have to be marked with her name, so they don’t get lost . . . I had fun with the embroidery option on Juki and embroidered her name, top left.  She, of course, will know it’s her quilt, but this is just to make sure it doesn’t go walkabout.

Finished quilt is 35” x 47” so it’s not big enough for a single bed. However, it will make the perfect “snuggle” quilt, for when curled up in an armchair watching TV and remind my niece of Auntie Claire (as if she needed reminding lol. She loves her Auntie Claire!).

hexies are growing


“Let it Bee” hexies are coming along nicely and growing . . . photo to show you I’ve now added the 180 hexies in plain “biscuit” around the intial flower shapes.  So that’s stage 2 done, so to speak.  This isn’t a final layout – just a snapshot of progress.  Next job is to cut even more hexies and begin a second border


I’ll be using the buttery yellow for that.  The darker fabric will be for later on, when I begin joining things together.

It’s quite a lot of work actually cutting and basting the hexies onto their paper shapes, but then it becomes more relaxing, as an evening sewing project in front of the TV.

So far I’ve assembled 285 little hexies . . . need to prepare 270 in my “butter” fabric, so wish me luck ^^

50 kilos


Just look at that!  50 kilos of kiwi harvested in our back garden!  And we even left some on the vine because we were only using the step ladder and couldn’t reach some high up.

Needless to say, we won’t be able to eat (or store) this many fruit, so I’ve already bagged some up and begun knocking on neighbours’ doors to share around.  I now need to find some decent storage crates for the 20 kilos we’ll be keeping, and get our fuzzy fruit nicely packed for the winter months.

Virgo – Vervaco

A mini happy dance to share with you.


As I have completed “Virgo” (model by Vervaco).  I’m not quite sure what’s going on with her left eye – I’ve followed symbols on the chart, but that white stitch looks a little out of place to me.  Nevermind, seen from a distance, with the others, it doesn’t really jump out at you.

zodiac x4

So that’s four down, and eight to go.  Time to choose another sign ^^  What will it be?

Ducky’s a big boy now

You know who our Ducky is.


Yep, here he is ^^  Six months old yesterday and boy is he a big kitten!  4.4 kilos, can you believe that?. I have a hard time believing it myself, but that’s what the scales say. And, because we don’t want any hanky panky going on in our house, Ducky is the first of the kittens to be neutered.  What a birthday present, eh?  All went well – he came home a little groggy, but was quickly back to his normal self.


Abby (here on Blackjack’s bed which is covered in Blackjack fur)


is a tiny shrimp in comparison.  She weighs in at 2.8kg, so that’s a more normal weight for a 6 month kitten. She hasn’t come on heat yet, but we thought it safer to get Ducky “fixed” first.  Abby will go along to be spayed next month, once she’s grown a little more.  Neither kitten has been allowed outdoors yet and Abby will stay indoors until she has been spayed.   Our other cats are neutered, so her honour will remain intact ^^ We want no accidental pregnancies in this house, thank you very much!

Blackjack also saw the vet yesterday.

bjack bed 03

That was for his annual booster jabs, but also for a general check-up. He’s not getting any younger.  He’s also put on weight without me noticing!  From a very healthy 32 kilos he’s now, quite frankly, over-weight and, I’m ashamed to say he tipped the vet’s scales at almost 38 kilos!!!  Now, that is no good . . . is making his heart & other organs work overtime, and it can’t be helping his old joints either. So, I picked up a sack of “calory control” dried food for Blackjack, and he’ll be on a strict diet over the coming weeks, in the hopes losing at least 5 kilos.

SAL – new start

On our last 3-weekly update, Avis and I were proud to show off our happy dancing, with “Friendship Quilt V” (Whispered by the Wind) all finished, after 12 months of stitching.  In case you missed it . . . here’s mine again.

SAL friendship quilt finished

We then put our heads together and agreed on a new project.  Something totally different, but ever so colourful.  And here is photo of my first stage.

KD 01

A little kokeshi doll ^^  This new project is a design called “Kokeshi Friends” and is copyright to Joan Elliott.  It was published in issue 200 of  “The World of Cross Stitching” magazine (which is where my copy of the chart comes from) but was also later republished in chart form.  You can buy it here on  or here, on Casa Cecina. 


It’s a perfect design to break up into stages for a SAL.  I haven’t added backstitch yet (except for eyes and mouth) but Miss Pink will look a lot cuter, when details are added to her fan & kimono.

Don’t forget to check out what my SALing partners have been up to, will you!  Avis, who is stitching Kokeshi Friends along with me . . . and other ladies, working on different designs.  Kate, Gun, Jule, Carole, Lucyann, Cathy, Wendy, Jess and Jacqui.

Next update on 6th December.

I won!

Isn’t it the most exciting feeling when you win something?  I won a giveaway the other day and the gift arrived by post . . . such a lovely feeling to open up a nice big fat envelope and discover the joys inside.  The giveaway was organised by Mandy Munroe . . . the prize


the November edition of “Popular Patchwork” magazine complete with a wooden button.  OOhhh quick, fresh cup of coffee and feet up time lol.

Not only did Mandy send me this very inspiring magazine . . . she also sent a lovely bookmark AND some Gütermann fabrics, plus the little Gütermann booklet with patterns to make several projects!


Thank you so much Mandy!  I can’t promise I’ll be snipping into these fabrics terribly soon, as I have lots on-going at the moment . . . but they will be stored lovingly in my fabric stash and will be put to excellent use in the future ^^