Tuesday, 30 August 2011


We've just got back from a week at the Edinburgh Festival, exhausted but exhilerated. I saw 25 shows, and Christopher saw a few more as he went out to some late night shows after I'd gone to bed.

We went with friends, travelling first class on the train and had a flat right in the centre of the city. It was extremely noisy, but we were all so tired that we had no trouble sleeping.

Some of the shows we saw were stunning, some very good and some good. Only one or two were just okay, and nothing was downright dreadful. We saw straight plays, musicals, ballet, cuban dancing, comedy shows, Shakespeare, improvisation shows and stand-up comedy. We also saw the Military Tattoo in the castle. The buzz around the city is wonderful during these few weeks, and we saw so much busking and street theatre, as well as the costumed players handing out flyers for their shows and doing excerpts from them to entice audiences into coming to see them.

We were lucky with the weather too, mostly dry and not too cold.

Here are just a few photographs showing the city itself.

I don't think the skies were ever really this colour, but it certainly makes for a pretty picture doesn't it?

Yes, you really do have to climb up and down these hills to get around in the city.

Edinburgh had multi storey buildings and tenements from way, way back. This is at the top of the Royal Mile, part of which is closed off to traffic during the Festival for street theatre and performers to hand out leaflets.

The castle at night, taken from our seat in the stands at the Military Tattoo.

I'll try and post a few more photographs over the next few days, as I try to catch up with the washing and the gardening.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Two finishes

This is another lap quilt made from scraps to go in my donation pile.

This was a BOM from last year, and I can't for the life of me remember who it was designed by, so if you recognise it please let me know so that I can acknowledge it here. This has been quite densely quilted so that the applique hearts really pop out. It's going to a friend of mine as a raffle prize for the charity that she helps to run.

I've got two more scrappy lap quilts ready to sandwich and quilt and two more under way. I can really see the scrap pile diminishing now, which is really encouraging, though I'll no doubt be building it up again soon.

Update - thank you Pia, the BOM was called Flowers of Love, designed by Fiona Ransley of Designs by Fee

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Happy Christmas to me

And probably happy birthday to me as well! Some of you may have guessed that this was the present that Christopher bought for me at the quilt show.

I really didn't have any plans to buy one of these, lovely though they are, as they seemed rather expensive. But then we saw it being demonstrated and I wavered a bit; then Christopher offered to buy it and suddenly I could see how useful it would be!

As well as the die that came with it - two and a half inch half square triangles, two and a half inch square and four and a half inch square - I bought a flower die. And today I've made a pile of pinwheel blocks which went together beautifully, far more accurately than my usual blocks.

So, the question is, what other dies should I start saving up for? Have you got a Go cutter? What would you recommend?

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Festival of Quilts 2011

Yesterday Christopher and I went to the Festival of Quilts, held at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham, about a three hour drive away. We both thoroughly enjoyed looking at the display of quilts, some of which were stunning, some of which should never have been displayed (in our opinion, that is). I wandered around all of the booths, while Christopher was having a coffee, but as usual was confused by the amount of choice and bought very little. And the queues put me off buying some cheap fabric and wadding that I would have liked.

But then Christopher came around with me, and ended up buying me my Christmas present, which I'll show you next time I post.

Here's a slideshow of the photographs I took; some worked well, others were a bit blurry, but I've included them anyway.

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Monday, 8 August 2011

Rainbow challenge

I've managed to kill two birds with one stone with this quilt. The challenge this month is to use white with other colours, so I've combined it with the yellow blocks I made for a previous month's challenge, though I had to add in a few orange squares to make it large enough. It's come out at a lap quilt size, which will add to the pile of lap quilts I'm making from scraps for donation to a local old people's home.

I've made this little star - it finishes at about four inches - to send to the child that I sponsor through World Vision out in Ethiopia. 

Birthday get together

Last week was my birthday, and we were lucky enough to be able to get together for lunch with both our sons and their partners. The weather was perfect and after a very tasty lunch in a gastro pub we went to Polesden Lacey, a house owned by the National Trust, for a few hours in the afternoon. I managed to grab a few photographs.

The back of Polesden Lacey, which is the house where the late Queen Mother spent her honeymoon, and incidentally where Christopher and I spent our honeymoon. Though she was in the house and we were in a tent in a campsite set in the grounds!

This is the view you'd get if you were standing at the top of the steps in the previous photograph looking out. Stunning, isn't it?

Christopher took this photograph of us in the grounds. I'm the little munchkin on the right, with Alexander (number two son) next to me, then his partner John, then Oliver (number one son) and his partner Laura.

Friday, 5 August 2011

Please vote for me

I've entered my Log Cabin Christmas quilt into this week's competition at Quilting Gallery and I'd be so pleased if you'd go there and vote for me.