Monday, 17 December 2012


I am not sure what happend to this year but it has gone very quickly, its very hard to believe that there is only one week to go...and as usual so much to do.

I have been busy trying to get a few presents made and was starting to panic about the Gingerbread house........but I am pleased to say that it is now made and will be constructed on Wednesday!  This is a tradition that I started 24 years ago (very scary) and I am rather proud to say that all my girls now make them for their families.  And it has to be said theirs look like houses where as mine is often a ruin!!  But at least it tastes good.
 Along with the Christmas gifts, I have manged, eventually, to finish the quilt for my new Great Nephew who arrived in September and who I will be meeting for the first time this week.  It is an old favourite Log Cabin, but cut on the slant with un-even panio keys as the border.  I have put fleece on the back so it is very cosy and I am rather pleased with it.  

Harry's Quilt
  I have also just finish this bag, which is made from a pattern I picked up at a quilt show many years ago, and although I have now made 4 of them I still don't have one!  I'd like to say that this is all my presents completed but I'm afraid not.........  I remember as a small child, seeing my mum, on Christmas Eve, still working on outfits for my Sister and I for the next day, I have a feeling this may be me this year! But hey, it is worth it.

Harry's Bag
Well, I think that Sue and I have had a brilliant year with Beyond Patchwork.  We have met some lovely ladies, have had fabulous comments and had a lot of giggles. Roll on 2013 and more of the same please. 

Thank you for your support and for taking the time to read this.   

Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for 2013


Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Not beginners anymore............

Hello again,
Yesterday was our last Begin Patchwork Course workshop, just take a look at our wonderful ladies and their beautiful quilts.

We're so proud of them and what a bonus to take home a quilted, almost completed project (just some finishing touches) instead of a UFO is so rewarding and far less daunting.
Unfortunately, Kathy broke three bones in her foot and was unable to continue, but in the new year she will be well enough to carry on with it, get well soon Kathy.

Well done ladies, you were perfect students and we had such a laugh, keep up the good work.
Sue and Carolyn

Monday, 3 December 2012

Mixed Media playtime................

Hello all,

I have finished my blue JQ's, (can't believe this project has finished and a year has gone by) and posted them on the contemporary site. Before I post them here, I thought I would show you a few pages from the little stitched book I've been working in for all my JQ's. Blue being my favourite colour I had to do it justice and took a while pondering what to work on. In the end I decided to work from my photos of agapanthus, which come in many shades of blue.
So, it was a case of gathering everything blue together and getting stuck in, don't you just love it when being creative means you get to make a mess, dive in and play..............
Spiral of ransom letters spelling 'blue' and mixed media framed strips
Adding a wash over the ransom letters
Reference to agapanthus, torn photo and fabric strips
Mixed media collage and gel medium transfer
Mixed media weave
Some of these pages are not finished and will be worked into further.

I liked the mixed media collage and decided that was the way to go with my JQ's. I had some lovely spent A4 Transfer Dye papers, that were the perfect candidates for this project and already the right size.

You've probably realised by now that Carolyn and I like to change the surface of fabric and paper whenever possible, to that end I used wax pastel to do a  rubbing over lace and painted lace to use as a print, all adding more texture and layers to dyed fabric and transfer papers.
I also like the gel transfer, the edges have a nice distressed look, so I used that method onto rusted fabric as my feature photo of agapanthus, then built up around them with a varity of mixed media, which included.....painted bondaweb release papers, hand dyed scrim, silk rods, indigo dyed fabric, torn transfer paper, torn hand written paper with reference to agapanthus. They are all backed with cotton wadding, tea dyed fabric and free machine quilted. I then embellished where needed, with fly stitch, cross stitch and hand quilting. The edges are satin stitched and painted, so here they are.........

Agapanthus Blooming
Agapanthus Garden
Agapanthus at Sea
Agapanthus Dreaming
So there we are, all twelve JQ's done and dusted, I've enjoyed making them and the extra sketch book work has got me wanting to continue 'playing'................
Hope its inspired you to make a mess and get creative!
Back soon

Friday, 30 November 2012

Busy week.............

Hi everyone,
I mentioned in the last post we had a busy week ahead and so it was, however, it's always a pleasure when it concerns doing things we love. We'll start with our Begin Patchwork workshop, the ladies are doing us proud and producing some lovely quilts. We are at the stage of adding the borders, they have kept up a sterling pace, with just one more workshop to finish with the binding and label. Below are some of our ladies hard at work, but we were treated to some lovely cake at coffee time.

Then we had our Ever Decreasing Squares Quilt workshop at Coast and Country Crafts and Quilts, which thankfully went ahead even after they suffered from a flood at the weekend. Here are some photos showing the beginnings of some beautiful squares.

And finally, we had a very inspiring meeting today with some of the ladies that have joined 'Textile Maids'. We've made plans, sorted a venue to meet, got people in place to take on 'duties', so, all in all we think it's going to be an exciting time ahead, we'll keep you posted.

Phew, I think that's all for now.

Monday, 26 November 2012

Degembris Open Day.....

Hi everyone,

Unfortunately for our lovely friends at Degembris, who worked so hard to put on their open day, the weather took its toll with only a few brave souls venturing out to visit.

Here we are set up and ready, it's all good practice and should they decide to do another, we can treat this as a dry run (excuse the pun, sorry).

Still on the subject of the Retreat Weekend, we have put some photos onto flickr and Degembris have added some to their blog,
Also, thank you to Dianne for the lovely comment on our guest page, we look forward to seeing your beautiful wall hanging in its frame.

We have a busy week ahead but I have such 'itchy' fingers, I must get into my sewing room and have a play this afternoon.

If the weather is keeping you inside, hope you spend it creatively.
Bye for now

Monday, 19 November 2012

Degembris Retreat Weekend

Hi everyone,

We have had a fabulous retreat weekend, with gorgeous food, plenty of cake to keep the energy levels up, a superb work space, beautiful weather and lots of laughter. Hannah and the crew made us very welcome and on Sunday entertained us with a slide show of photos that Roger, her dad, took of us all at work, which caused great up-roar.
Here are some of our photos, sorry they're a bit spaced out but I did warn you at the beginning of this blog venture, I'm not computer savvy..............

Heads down

Building up the layers

Always time for a giggle

And a cuppa

Growing quickly

Busy hands
Dianne hand sewing embellishments

Constructing the back of Margarets

Cushion tops at the end of a lovely weekend

And a few of our bits

This was just a small selection of our photos for now, when we get some of Roger's we'll post some more.
Carolyn and I really enjoyed the weekend and it's lovely to get our first retreat under our belt, can't wait for the next one now, so come on ladies, get booking............

We will be there again next Sunday 25th, for Degembris Open Day, they have many more traders there, so if you have any free time why not pop over, have a look around, stop for coffee and some of their lovely cake, I can recommend it.
If you do visit please stop by for a chat and make yourselves known to us, we'll be in The Siddle.
Thanks for reading, bye for now.

Friday, 16 November 2012

Degembris here we come!!

The planning is completed, the samples done, our bags are all packed and we are ready for our first Retreat weekend at Degembris Manor Farm.

The Manipulated workshop is a lovely workshop to do and what with a wonderful setting and marvelous hosts (Hannah & Kathy) it promises to be a fabulous weekend! Who cares if it is a little wet!!

We will be posting photos next week so please keep an eye out for them.

Speak soon.

A very excited 

Monday, 29 October 2012

Open Day

Come and join us for a day out and have a nosey at where you could be enjoying a relaxing patchwork retreat.................

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Anyone for a Cappuccino?

Coming soon we have our Ever Decreasing Square Workshop and 'Cappuccino' is our sample quilt.  

Cappuccino - October 2012
After popping a photo of the quilt that Sue made for her Great Nephew on the blog, we received a request for a workshop, so this is it.

The quilt was fun to make and as the colours reminded us of coffee, it just had to be called 'Cappuccino'.

We hope you like it.

It is going down to Coast & Country Crafts & Quilts at Perranarworthal tomorrow to be displayed before the workshop.  We are also doing a version of this quilt at our Weekend Retreat at Degembris Manor Farm in December 2012 and February 2013.


Unexpected visitor...........

Hi everyone,

I was busy in the attic today when my daughter shouted up that we had a visitor, so everything was put on hold as we haven't seen our visitor for such a long time, why the fuss, well look who it was.......

Mr. Pheasant
Isn't he looking splendid and such long tail feathers. The last time we saw him in the summer he was looking very unkept, obviously had a family keeping him busy, so when he stopped calling I thought that was it, but it was such a lovely surprise today.

Back soon

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

A little walk on Dartmoor!

Badgers Holt - Dartmoor

Well.........the weather wasn't brilliant, in fact we had mist and rain, but Dartmoor was beautiful.  It was lovely to have a few days away walking in perfect scenery, eating fabulous food and enjoying the odd glass of wine!

These are just 2 of the photos that I took, but hopefully they will give a flavour of views and the amount of water that we saw.
Yar Tor - Dartmoor

I now have some lovely new inspiration to get busy with.

 Once I have someting to show I will pop it on the blog, but in the meantime I need to catch up with a few other projects and get ready for the first meeting of 'Textile Maids' on Tuesday 6 November

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Strange forces at work?

Recently whilst reading a blog I follow, I was lead to another persons blog and discovered my January Journal Quilt has been featured on the same page as her JQ in a new book. It came as quite a surprise to say the least.

The book has been published to celebrate 10 years of the Contemporary Quilt group and contains work from past exhibitions as well as the journal quilt projects.

Here is the page from the book with my journal quilt, last one bottom right.

Strange forces, coincidence, whatever the reason, trawling through the blogs gave me a nice surprise I may never have known about.

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Variation on a theme

Hi everyone,

I've just made pasties, so while they're cooking I thought it would give me time to show cushion number two I managed to finish today. It's on the same lines as the Quilted Cushion I showed you on Monday, but this time I've used fabric to add some colour. Took me a while to fiddle with ideas on how to vary the design, but that's the fun of it.

Fractured Squares Cushions
The stitched pattern and fabric pieces are free machine quilted the same as the first one, here they are together.

I used the same colour thread but how different it looks when you introduce another colour.

I'm happy with those two, it's always good to try something new. I'm off to check on the pasties now, thanks for dropping by.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Keeping busy..............

Hi everyone,

It's my turn to be home alone this time as Carolyn is having a few days off. So, I thought I would keep busy and do something I've wanted to try for quite a while.

Many years ago I bought a book by the quilt artist Yoshiko Jinzenji. Some of her work used a limited colour palette with free machine quilting creating pattern and texture.
At the time I made notes in a little 'black book' I keep, on the first page I write -
To day!

In the past I have taken great pains to make brightly coloured patchwork cushions for our conservatory, only to have the sun bleach all the colour out. So, having to re-new them I thought this would give me an opportunity to use Yoshiko's method as my inspiration.

I used calico fabric and added colour, pattern and texture with Madeira thread and free machine quilting. What a wonderful way to spend a wet Monday afternoon............

Quilted Cushion
I like finshing my cushions with the pillow case method so the ties pretty them up and the cushion behaves much better. Cross fingers the sun damage will not notice so much!!

I must just tell you, we had a lovely Manipulated Fabric workshop last week, thank you Margaret for leaving a comment on our guest page, we will pop some photos up soon. Also, we will be having our first get together soon with Textile Maids, how exciting.

Now back to my little 'black book' for another cushion idea.
Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Mixed Media "Taster Day"

Hi everyone,

We've mentioned in the past how we like to use mixed media in our work whenever possible. This month and next, we have 3 Mixed Media "Taster Day" workshops.

The first is one of my favorites, making Fabric Paper, it's a wonderful way to use those lovely papers that we've stashed away, wrapping paper, painted papers, tissue paper etc. It can then be used as fabric, painted, stitched and embellished.

We like using Fabric Paper for our books and that's our second workshop. We use a variety of papers to construct the book and make a covering, either from fabric or Fabric Paper, incorporating paint and stitch, the books make ideal gifts.

You may have seen on one of our 'turtle' days, we used trappings to create a piece of fabric. On our third "Taster Day" we will use this method in our Card Making workshop. This fabric can also be used for book covers or small tiles to add to a piece of work.

All the details and dates can be found on our web site.

In the meantime, I'm really looking forward to tomorrow, we are taking a workshop with another one of my favourite techniques, Manipulated Fabric. We'll try to remember and take some photo's to show you.
Bye for now,

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

What a week!

Well, that was a very lovely, but busy week, meeting new Quilt Groups and running Workshops!

We had a lovely day on Friday at the Craft Show at Westpoint.  There was lots to see, purchases to make, and cuddles to have ( my mum, daughter and grandson joined us for the day!!)

Although it wasn't a quilt show, the quilts that were on show were lovely and got the fingers twitching again.

We are missing our 'Turtle Tuesday' today, but I am hoping to pop into my sewing room for a few minutes, and I am sure Sue will be hoping to as well.

Receding Tide - 2012

Recently I found a small wall hanging, that I started at college (oh so many years ago) and that I had never quite finsihed!!

It is inspired from a photo of rubbish washed up on the beach.  I used reversed applique and included a variety of mixed media.   
I think it is just about there now........

I am pleased to say that we are having a good response to our call for 'Textile Maids' and are hoping to get together shortly for a coffee and a chat.  

We will keep you posted of its progress!


Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Begin Patchwork

As Carolyn mentioned, Tuesday was our 2nd week of Begin Patchwork. The blocks from the previous workshop were quilted and looking beautiful.

We had two blocks on the programme this week, below are some blocks from week 1 and the first blocks from this week, ready for sashings and quilting.

                                         Work in progress on the 2nd blocks.

Hope you enjoyed seeing the beginnings of some lovely quilts. We'll keep you posted........

We have put our new workshop dates and newsletter on the web site.
Thanks for reading, back soon, Sue