Wool, Wiltshire and All Manner of Wonderful Things!

Archive for March, 2019


Silent Sunday

Quilt, Knit and Natter Friday

Today’s natter is mostly quilt related, please skip to the end for the knit bit.

So it was the second of the three quilting classes last week. ( What is the difference between a class and a workshop, for sure I don’t know).

We stitched the nine blocks together using the chain method and nesting the seams! The tutor held each one up as we finished and we each had a round of applause and people said nice things which made me feel inordinately good .I also had a bit of a smug moment which I mostly managed to keep to myself. Remember last time the tiz I got into cutting up fat quarters , well the other two beginners had no such trouble. Smug moment coming. We were stitching them together and I knew that I had to get  those corners matching and the seam had to be 1/4 inch wide exactly. So there I am plodding my way down the seam slowly slowly, snails pace. Lady next to me, whiz , bang wallop, she’s finished . HA! I still feel the glee as she was not only told to unpick seams but cut some more pieces because they were the wrong size. Guess who finished first in the end, the tortoise… oh so smug. I am feeling smug even typing this, not nice Cathy.

Please note the quilting language creeping in too I feel rather proud at learning the lingo. Then we cleared two tables and the three of us beginners and the tutor sandwiched our quilts. We laid the wadding down first and then the flimsy on top. Carefully lifting each corner we sprayed fabric glue and gently laid the top back down. Then we flipped the quilt over and laid the back down and repeat  with the spray fabric glue. Then we used curved safety pins to pin in place. I never knew there were curved safety pins in the world.  Then we were ready to start quilting, yikes.

Now comes a bit I’d like your thoughts on please. We were given something called a frixion erasable pen to mark the quilting lines with ,and if you iron them they vanish. This seemed a bit odd to me so I did some research when I came home, and apparently they are designed to be used by children for invisible writing on peper, because if you put your writing in the freezer they come become visible again. Now I won’t be putting the quilt in the freezer, but they sound a bit dubious to me. Has anyone used them? I gather there is a problem too with ghosting.

I then saw someone mentioned using a hera marker , but try as I might I can’t find out if they just make a crease mark or an actual mark mark? Does anyone know?

I also saw the suggesting of using masking tape to show where to go. I didn’t finish the quilting in class and would love to know what people recommend before I part with some hard cash, well credit card, please.

So without further ado and a lot of humility here is how my quilting looks.

The big picture.

I was supposed to be in the ditch on the seam lines. whoops.

but at least my corners meet.

but off here, and you can see the red lines where I need to iron them a bit more to make them go away.

Here I need to go from bottom left to top right still, but how to mark the line. The in the ditch looks a bit better too.

We have started to talk about the next quilt too. It’s called rail fence I think, not telegraph pole as I said in class. It uses jelly rolls. For the beginners quilt I have used fat quarters I already owned, bought for no good reason ‘cept I liked them, so they don’t really make a cohesive quilt. So if I do the next quilt I want to buy a jelly roll I really like, but they seem so expensive. The one I like is a Moda and nearly £40 , does that sound about right. Should I be thinking of buying cheaper, buying better. Again please give me your thoughts.

And finally I want to say a huge thank you to all the quilters whose blogs I have followed and learned so  much from. Without you I would not have had my smug moment. It was entirely down to you all that I know the importance of that 1/4 inch. Moving on..

I have actually managed some knitting this week.

Back and front and half of the first sleeve done. Can I do another in a week? I’ll try to have more knitting next week.

Otherwise it’s been quiet round here. We have stayed on top of the house and garden. Mr E even made the bed two days running! I continue to plod away at family history, I do love it when something suddenly slots into place.

The weather is a bit damp and drizzly , typical UK weather really. Hopefully I will get out in the garden or better still go for a nice walk. Next week is busy again, things to look forward too.

What about you? Anything planned for the weekend? In the meantime,

Take care,

Be Happy,




March windows- 2019

Once again joining in with Wild Daffodil and a search for some interesting windows.

I came across this building whilst walking in Farndale this month. Is it a barn, a workshop, the cottage close by is called the Blacksmith’s cottage so was it a forge? There is a window by the door, a gap for a window maybe above the door, or was that for hay, and to the left a shutter, a window, hay loft? Ideas anyone.

Some very utilitarian windows now in the village hall at Low Farndale. This is a typical village hall in the dales round here. Make a note of it, because if you want to see Wild Daffodils, this is is place to come and here is where you park your car for a small fee to support the tiny community. I have a sneaky fondness for this type of community hall.

And finally I spotted this window in a door in a shop to let in Pickering.

And a bonus window in the reflection.

Do pop over to Wild Daffodil for some proper swanky windows!


Take two minutes

What a very good idea, just have to reblog this.

The official blog for the North York Moors National Park

Alison Goodwin, Moor to Sea Project* Officer

Most of us will have seen the shocking images from David Attenborough’s Blue Planet 2 programme: oceans full of plastic and beaches filled with detritus. On our UK beaches, the Marine Conversation Society revealed in 2018 that just under 7 tonnes of litter was collected at a handful of beaches over a 3 year period.

Since then there’s been a grassroots-level movement emerge with people keen to do more. Whitby Beach Sweep is one such community organization. Running since February 2018 in association with Surfers against Sewage, they’ve been organising community litter picks along Whitby beaches. Eager to expand their focus to reach wider audiences, they’ve now linked up with the #2minutebeachclean board initiative. By promoting the scheme through social media, and by having a physical board sited on the beach, it’s hoped others will be encouraged to lend a hand.

Close up on a #2minutebeachclean board. Copyright NYMNPA.


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February books-2019

I have read some super books this month and many are thanks to the recommendations I receive here or read on blogs. Please tell me if you have read any of these or have found any good reads recently.

Natasha Lester- The Paris Seamstress- an enjoyable book set in Paris and New York, blending real and fictional characters and two-time spans- the 1940s and the present day. There is romance, spies and fashion.

Heather Morris- The Tattooist of Auschwitz- gosh what can I say, other than read it. The real story of Lale Sokolov who was given the job of tattooing the numbers on the arms of the people who were taken to Auschwitz. One day he looked into the eyes of the young woman whom he fell in love with and married after the war. Just read it, and have some tissues by your side. Onto my Top 100 list. A very well written book , you feel as if Lale was talking direct to you, one to one.

Stuart Turton- The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle- Cluedo meets Groundhog Day! A murder happens in Blackheath House, can Aiden Bishop discover the murderer. Only problem is he only has eight days to solve the mystery otherwise he has to start again. On each of the  days he wakes up as a different person staying in the house. It’s a very complicated and well executed plot, the map of the house and the list of characters help you keep track of what is happening and to whom. It felt like being inside a computer game, where you can start over but you obviously remember what happened. It isn’t one by the way, if it had been it would have been a more satisfactory explanation at the end. It was an enjoyable read, but you do need to have set aside big chunks of time to read it, not one for the journey to work, be great on holiday. And if you don’t like it don’t blame me blame Doris.

Peter Toohey- Boredom, a lively history- I attend a monthly group through the U3A which looks at psychology. This month it was my turn to run the session for the group. I choose Boredom as my theme. My question underpinning things was Is Boredom useful? So I read this book as part of my research. It covered a lot of ground from a Boredom Proneness test to looking at how boredom has been portrayed in art and literature. I found the whole subject totally fascinating and guess what, I am not prone to boredom. If you enjoy things psychological this was very accessible and interesting read. I am thinking of looking into the psychology of shopping next, what do you reckon, interesting or boring?

Julie Kibler- Calling me home- two love stories across the racial divide set in the present day and the 1930s in America. Well written, but knowing that the 1930s story could not end well , made it quite harrowing at times. A good read. The best part was the developing friendship between the elderly white woman and her hairdresser and friend who is a black single mother as they travel to a funeral.

Sally Rooney- Normal People-This book won the Man Booker Prize 2018. It examines a rather weird couple and their non relationship  -friends with benefits really. Marianna is clever, but has a troubled home life, bullied by her older brother, father is dead, Mother is a shadowy presence who fails to make any meaningful contact with her daughter. At school she is a misfit, bullied by the other pupils. Connell is the son of their cleaner, also very clever and popular, he enjoys the sex and power he has over Marianna but ignores her at school. They go off to Dublin to uni, he to read English she to read History. Marianna is now pretty, and popular, but goes beyond being a doormat to her boyfriends and becomes masochistic. Connell is the misfit now, being the boy from the poor background, but their relationship comes and goes, and sometimes they have significant others and sometimes they don’t. It all ends abruptly. I mean Connell gets the offer of a place in New York to do creative writing and the book stops. My advice is don’t bother with this one. However if you already read it I would love t know what you made of it?

And that’s it for February. Love to know what you are reading? I am reading about some Remarkable Creatures…

Knit and Natter Friday

Not only am I late to the knit and natter , but I haven’t much knitting or natter to write about. Truth is we have been getting on, as my Dad used to say, with the great house sort out. Mr E has managed to stay focused and we have accomplished a lot. There is a final delivery to a charity shop and a final run to the tip with shredded paper and we are done. We even had the white goods in the kitchen out this morning and cleaned round the back, oh yuk! Last year was so taken up with Mr E and hospital and all that he/we went through that house care had really taken a back seat. It feels good that we have done this.

Tomorrow I shall have off. It’s the second of the three quilting workshops. If last time was about chopping up the fabric, tomorrow is about sewing it all up again.

Knitting wise I have nearly finished the front of the jumper I am making for Miss F. And that’s it.

I really have nothing to say today, except Happy St David’s day. For once we have daffodils in bloom, the warm weather has really brought them on, although having said that temperatures have returned to the norm today- 8.5C. Can’t believe on Tuesday I was gardening with just a t shirt and no coat on.

So, I wonder what’s been happening with you this week? Do you have any plans for the weekend? Hopefully next week I shall have more to say for myself, and at least a quilt half finished to show you.

Take care, and Be Happy,



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