Category Archives: events,

Fat Bird Rides…Again!

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Hazel, Sue, Adele and me looking sweaty after a hard day building the show stand

I didn’t get around to blogging last week, it isn’t because I didn’t want to, I was at the Harrogate quilt show, so I suppose that took all my mental space. We had a great time at the show, so a big Thank You to everyone who came and supported us, on the other hand I listened to a lot of the traders and I think the general trend is that shows are going downhill. A word of caution, please please support the quilt shows or you will lose them, just ask the Scottish ladies!! There used to be three quilt shows in Scotland that I am aware of, all have bombed through lack of support, remember traders have to pay an awful lot of money to stand at these shows, they are not invited as guests or charity; that is before costs for travel, staff, food and hotels.

In fact, I’ll continue with this grumble as I am interested in your views too. I’ve just outlined it costs an awful lot for a trader to attend a show and therefore fabrics etc. have to be charged out at a fair price to cover all the costs; it is therefore incredibly frustrating when customers utter those dreaded words…I’ll see if I can get it cheaper online! It is so unfair that people are allowed trade accounts to trade from their spare room and then undercut other traders who go to all the trouble of bricks and mortar shops and exhibitions. Think about it ladies, it’s not just the shows, quilt shops are closing left right and centre too; we all want to save a few pennies but is that at the expense of losing the shops and shows we all enjoy visiting? I understand that things can be improved on both sides so let’s open a discussion and see what people think. Messages greatly received.

Oh! and if you want any of our lovely designs head over to www.quiltingantics.co.uk

 

On the weight loss front things are still going well, I lost 1lb last week giving me my 3 stone award and then 1.5lb this week whoop whoop! 1lb can be disappointing but I have to remember one off is better than one on, also added to the 1.5lb this week it has become a huge 2.5lbs (slightly more than a bag of sugar)

If I’m honest, I did treat the team to a Billy Bob’s ice cream on the way home from the show last week, counting it into my daily allowance, also not have any other treats that day, it was so worth it. In fact, I had ice cream on two days and then on the other two days had a slice of cake. So naughty but so nice; which when I stop to think about it, makes a 1.5lb loss incredible.

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Treating the team to an ice cream nom nom nom

I’m not going to pretend that it has been all plain sailing though. The crux of my weight loss is down to giving up the three cherished B’s, bread, butter and booze. This week I have longed for a drink, I haven’t been bothered about the booze for ages so I don’t know what has been different this week (maybe the menopause?) and for the last couple of days I have been so hungry that I could eat my own head off! I made a butternut risotto last night from one of my slimming cookbooks, it was really easy to do and then I gorged on it. I thought that if I was stuffed full with comfort food it might take the cravings away, it did, then I occupied myself with some hand stitching and a really good series on Netflix which meant that I totally forgot about the booze too, what a relief but sometimes you have these challenges to overcome. (Grumble grumble)

 

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Butternut risotto, pic from book.

For the risotto, I rough chopped a pack of lean bacon, lobbed it in a big pan with a bag of ready chopped fresh butternut squash and onion (it was a soup mix.) I rough chopped 3 cloves of garlic and threw it in the pan with about 250g of risotto rice. Crumble in one or two chicken stock cubes and tip in 850 ml of boiling water. Pepper to taste. Stir well and regularly over hot heat so that it doesn’t stick, when it resembles the pic its done! Mine looked a bit smashed up by comparison. Optional throw a few chives on to serve (I never do)

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Onwards and upwards now…fat bird rides again! If you are wondering what I’m on about, I got the bike out this morning. My target this year has been to get back on my bike, it felt very strange and I think I will have to go through the ritual of being saddle sore before I settle into it properly (not for the feint hearted.) I can’t lie, I am really self-conscious at the moment with my full moon sized arse hanging off the back of the seat but I did it and that’s a fact no one can take away from me today! I probably rode less than a mile, stopping for a chat with Suzanne mid-way (well done on your weight loss too) but it was enough for today, as today is about having the confidence to do it, tomorrow is a new challenge.

 

For now, though the immediate challenge is TV…yikes. I’m back on the Hochanda channel next Friday 13thSeptember at 8am and 11am, I’m nowhere near resembling ready, there is so much still to do its ridiculous but as always, it will all come together and be alright on the day…fingers crossed! I will give you a peak at the new projects on my Facebook page and Instagram when I get organised.

Proud mummy moment. The little man started secondary school this week and whilst he wouldn’t allow me to share his pic on the day here he is looking very grown up showing us a routine he has JUST learned with the very talented Ess Green.

 

 

Squeezing life around the Secrets of a Fat Bird…next instalment

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Squeezing life around the Secrets of a Fat Bird…next instalment

This week has been absolutely hectic and I honesty did mean to post as I went along, I put a few bits on Instagram and Facebook but I thought as it’s bank holiday weekend I would take a few minutes to share properly with you all.

Before I go any further I would just like to give a huge plug to the Harrogate quilt show which is happening on Friday 30th, Saturday 31st August and Sunday 1st September. It will be at the Great Yorkshire show ground and there is lots of free onsite parking. Tickets £9 on the door.

So…the weight loss is still going well, another 2.5lb off this week, which means I only need to loose 1lb for my 3 stone award. Don’t you feel cheated when you jump on the scales and the milestone hasn’t quite been achieved, even though you know that you’ve done well and 2.5 is a great result. I’m beginning to feel ready to start cycling again, however I’ve done something to my knee so I’ve parked that idea until it feels a bit better.

This weeks achievement, fellow fatties, you will get this, the slim Jim’s may take a minute…what is the significance of this photo?

This is the gate I go through most mornings on my dog walk, prior to loosing weight, I manhandled this awful wonky gate every day, which really hurt my neck and shoulders. Over the last couple of weeks I can now climb over the stile. Might seem a small thing to many but to me it’s huge!

Back to the reality of work, we have had a really busy week, being buried under mountains of prep for the Harrogate Quilt show, sending out parcels for Hochanda and creating new designs for future Hochanda TV  shows. If you are outside the UK you can still watch the Hochanda channel live via their website Hochanda.com Our next TV show on 13th September is going to be our last offering of new Christmas designs for 2019 plus a little bit of Halloween/autumn thrown in for good measure. We have a one day special coming up on the 5th and 6th of October and have themed it on Edward Lear’s Owl and the Pussycat,  the cushion below, is just one tiny part of the set; wait til you see the full sized quilt  and other bits and bobs. As if that’s not enough I will also be on the telly on October 13th with even more goodies, including some rather special new designs by Michaela Smith.

The summer holidays continue to rumble on, Leons dance school are running a photo competition for pics of people making dance moves in open spaces, so this is our first effort, I’m sure we will have more attempts too. My young choreographer positioned me doing a ‘dab’.  I loved the heather moor as all the lovely purple is beginning to shine, which always signifies that Harrogate quilt show is near.

To finish off todays post, I came across a photo taken in May last year when I was on my way back from Malvern quilt show. The story goes like this, I had forgotten to fill the van up with diesel and as we got onto the motorway the fuel light came on (aarrgghh!!) So I pulled into the first services with only about 20 more miles in the tank, I was towing the caravan, good ole Dobbin, so probably wouldn’t have even got 20 miles. As we pulled into the garage, you can’t script this, there was a power cut. All the lights went out across the garage in a kind of fabulous Hollywood slow motion style. Stuck in the service station, with nowhere to go, we had no choice but sit there. I was in a bit of a silly giggly mood and as I looked to the pump at the side of me there was a young lad having what you can only describe as a toddler tantrum due to the power cut…what a plonker! I commented to Natters who was sat beside me that the child was wearing girls pumps (not a Mickey take I’d normally do but he was behaving like a baby) and good old natters shrieked OMG! its Dom off Love Island; having never watched this show, the comment was entirely lost on me but hey ho, for the fun of it I called across to him “Oy! Are you Dom off t’telly?” shouted in my best Yorkshire accent, to which the child stopped tantruming, turning round, flashing teeth so white that they would give Rylan Clark Neale a run for his money and replied “Yeh”. By this time Natters is squirming in her seat with embarrassment, having hurriedly filled me in with the show gossip. “Did you get your leg over on’t telly”. “Yeh!” He replies, sticking his chest out proudly, informing me how many hours or days into the series it was before he conquered the female. So just for the fun of it, I asked do you want a selfie? Honestly, I have never seen anyone run for a selfie with as much gusto in my life! I held out the camera but couldn’t reach the blooming button as I”m not a teenager anymore and so not the best with techno. quick as a flash he’s grabbed it out of my hand and as you can see in the pic I’m reaching out to press the button and he’s done it already…I wonder if he’s always this quick to complete with the ladies? Shout out to Natters who’s squirming in the background. Anyhow after war and peace…I came across this pic and tried to recreate the camera angle, and shirt, not easy on your own; I am staggered with he resulting photo, I think you will agree I’ve lost a fair bit of timber (private little whoop whoop.)

That’s all for now folks, if you want to see some of the stuff we’ve been up to have a look on my website www.quiltingantics.co.uk if you can’t see what you are looking for drop me a message on here as I’ve still got quite a few projects to upload.

 

I’m such an old…ahem, new bag!

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I’m such an old…ahem, new bag!

It’s that time of the month again…it’s the time when I’m preparing to go back on’t telly. We have worked our socks off this last month and have eight new designs with a bit of a Spring theme going on. I hope you like what we’ve done, I’d love to hear your comments, feedback is always welcome.

You will find me on the Hochanda Tv channel on Saturday 13th and Sunday the 14th of April. Freeview 85 Sky 673 and Freesat 817. I’m not sure what the channel number is if you are viewing from the U.S but I think you can watch online.

I nearly forgot to say that all the goodies (kits and patterns) will be available on my own website www.quiltingantics.co.uk from this weekend.

I’d like to start with Susan’s Satchel. I have been asked loads of times to make a tweed satchel, the last time being at Duxford show in March, by a lady called Susan…I told you I would name it after you hehehehe! It fits an A4 ring binder inside and is very easy to make.satchel pic

I forgot to add apart from the huge discounts I”m offering on the eight new patterns whilst on’t telly, I’m having a go at doing some happy hour deals too; so watch out for some genuine great deals. I don’t do an annual sale in the shop, so I’m doing this instead. There will be extra fabric on selected orders, bundles of bag haberdashery, bundles of basic utility fabrics (such as wadding and calico) and sets of Moda fat quarter bundles. Each individual offer will be available, at a discounted price, for one hour only!

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Back to the task in hand…next up is Rosa’s bag, named after my Sue’s adorable granddaughter, apparently this dusky shade of pink is this seasons hot property, we have teamed it with a beautiful silver grey, what do you think? It is a bit fiddly to make in places so not for an absolute beginner but once you’ve got your head round the zip area, it should be plain sailing. I love this little bag, as you can make it to coordinate with any outfit and it is ideal for leisure time; it would hold all your basic essentials whilst you have a great time, playing out.

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Third on the list, let’s shake things up and do something different. Here is our Green Man of the Woods, a wonderful emblem of the emerging spring season. He reminds me a bit of Parsley the Lion from the Herb Garden, do you remember the programme? Roberta has constructed him in the most simple way, I was pleasantly surprised when I wrote the pattern and realised how easy he actually is.

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So you like ornamental dolls? How about our Steam punk Scarecrow called Seth? He is such fun to make, his clothes are unbelievably easy and if you are feeling cautious don’t forget that as a scarecrow you could always distress (code for disguise any cock ups) his clothes a bit, to give him your own spin. I would be really interested to know if you like the Steam punk theme as, if you do, we may a bit more of it.

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So after a foray into the macabre lets return to the bags…

We brought you a bag, designed by Tracy Ankers, right back at the beginning of our Quilting Antics journey and it has sold and sold and sold. I can’t believe how many of you have loved it, so, using that as our inspiration I present to you the Crazy Chick bag. The fabrics are from the newest range of tweeds woven in collaboration with the National Trust and personally I think they are stunning, very chic.

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Nearly at the end, we have been asked loads of times to do an across the body bag. I saw a bag aimed at dog walkers, where you had a hole, to pull your poopy bags through. I didn’t have any suitable rings to make the hole, so we appliquéd a dog instead! If you aren’t a doggy person, you could leave the appliqué off or simply swap it for something you like better.

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Last but not least and just for a bit of a laugh, I give you the Doorstop Diva! It’s a doorstop in the shape of a handbag. If you filled it with something really heavy you could use it to keep everyone in check…I think I might be tempted to add some handbag jewellery, what do you think?

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I hope you like our new designs. It’s a really scary thing when you launch new stuff as you could sink like a brick. I hope we have tried hard enough this month..

www.quiltingantics.co.uk

We’re going on’t telly

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We’re going on’t telly

Thank you to everyone who came to see us at the Harrogate quilt show it was a brilliant weekend. And the new hall is amazing with loads of room to get around on the wide aisles it means that the experience is better for everyone. It would be great to hear feedback from any of you who were there.

So now to get ready for our next venture, we’re going on’t telly! we will be live on HOCHANDA which is listed as ‘The Store’ in the programme guide. You will find it on Freeview channel 39, Sky channel 663 and Freesat 817; we will be on next Saturday the 10th September at 11am and 2pm I think its fair to say I am getting a little nervous as the day gets closer. Michaela is coming with me and we will be doing two of her cushions (a matching pair) Hare Affair and Hare Today… followed by our Hedgerow series of wall hangings Dandy Fox, Bunny in the Brambles, A Hedgehog’s Friend and Mistletoe Mouse.I will be selling patterns and kits for each project on HOCHANDA’s website but don’t forget you can also buy them and many more designs on my website too.

So for the next few days I’m battening down the hatches to prepare all the goodies ready for the show. The turnaround is very tight and all parcels have to be posted out within 48 hours so lots of work to do!

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Hare Affair

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Hare Today…

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A Hedgehog’s Friend

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Bunny in the Brambles

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Dandy fox

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Mistletoe Mouse

Kirstie’s Handmade Fair Hampton Court

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I am so excited to tell you that our Michaela has been accepted to teach in Kirstie’s grand make at The Handmade Fair, Hampton Court from the 16th to the 18th of September under the banner of Quilting Antics. This is so exciting, I have seen some of her ‘mock ups’ for the tweed brooches that she will be teaching and in true Michaela style they are simple but sensational. Her workshops will be at 10am each day of the show and I think tickets go on sale from tomorrow on The Handmade Fair website. Book early to avoid disappointment.

http://www.quiltingantics.co.uk

Spring Quilt Festival, Westpoint, Exeter.

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Spring Quilt Festival, Westpoint, Exeter.

I don’t believe what I have just done!..I have only gone and booked to go to the Spring Quilt Festival, at Westpoint Exhibition Centre, Exeter from the 1st – 3rd of April.

So to all the people I have told that I wouldn’t be there with my lovely British wool Tweed I apologise. more to the point I ought to get cracking with my lovely new samples so that they are ready in time.

Have a look below at some of our goodies which are available as kits or patterns.

Hope to see loads of you there 🙂

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Kirstie Allsopp’s Handmade Fair at Hampton Court Palace

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Kirstie Allsopp’s Handmade Fair at Hampton Court Palace

I’m just back from an absolutely fabulous weekend at Kirstie Allsopp’s Handmade fair at Hampton Court Palace. It was brilliant, just like a gigantic Great British tea party. I’ve taken a few snaps and I hope that they will show you how far the team had gone to create such a wonderfully perfect vibe.

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This is my stand, we’ve made the big change to being all tweed at the shows, I think it looks ace I hope you agree. I also used this event to showcase my antique sewing equipment, this is a new line which we hope will make some of you very very happy this Christmas. Double click on the photo for a closer look. I will post pictures of all my goodies very soon.

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Not the most flattering photo of me (I’m waving at you mum.) Kirstie came to the stand on the first day, she was lovely. She spotted our antiques straight away and was particularly taken with the Indian Sadeli work box which is exquisite inside and out.

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This is the box in question. It was made in India from Rosewood, Ivory and  Pewter. They made thin matchsticks from each material and fixed them together; following which they cut across the layers  and made mosaic type designs as you can see on the outside of the box. It is likely that at the time Great Britian was an Empire an officer posted out to India bought this for his wife. I adore the history and romance associated with these  items, I hope you do too.

 

 

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Back to the main event, they had a big top where interviews happened all day.

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And there was an amazingly wonderful IMG_1776amount of bunting EVERYWHERE! Every marquee had bunting the whole way around it, in fact anything that wasn’t moving had bunting on all over it.

 

 

 

 

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There was a vintage feel everywhere, all the twiddley bits just showed how the team had gone the extra mile to create all the wonderfullness.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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IMG_1787 My favourite was the Deco Lounge, a beautiful chrome caravan called Lola,  We had free drinkies here on Saturday night

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Check out the cool vintage tea room, who would have thought that lacey net curtains and lampshades could look so good.

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IMG_1799IMG_1802 And…if you couldn’t find Kirstie she was bombing about in her bunting decorated golf buggy…totes vintage amazeballs!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



IMG_1805IMG_1806 These are my neighbouring stall holders, check out the wide range of crafty handmade bits. Linladan  Embroidery, Sarah Westwood and Vintage Lampshades.IMG_1807

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 Even the visitors and signposts were glamourous too!

I am really looking forward to Kirstie’s Christmas Handmade at Manchester Central from the 20th to the 22nd of November, I hope you will be able to join me there. 

Kirstie’s Handmade Fair

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Look what I’ve got…complimentary tickets for Kirstie Allsopp’s Handmade Fair at Hampton Court Palace in London and I am going to start giving them away. If you would like to win a pair of tickets all you need to do is add a comment to, then like and share this post. The show will be open from the 18th to the 20th of September 2015. I will be there with lots and lots of projects to make and do using British wool tweed and I will also be launching my newest range of goodies which will make ideal Christmas presents for crafters.

Before I forget, Kirstie is also going to do a Christmas Handmade Fair at Manchester Central from the 20th to the 22nd of November which I will also be at.

So for now, get liking and sharing of you want to be in with a chance of winning tickets!

Busy girls at the mill

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Busy girls at the mill

First of all, I want to thank everyone who came to see us at the Ardingly Quilt Show; this year was amazing we met so many lovely new faces and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. We are going through a bit of a change at the moment so we left the yellow T-shirts at home, which means you are forgiven if you didn’t recognise us; we did feel a bit too incognito for our liking so might have to do something to remedy the situation in due course.
I have been busy attempting to become a designer maker over the last few months and the show was my first opportunity to display my ‘Sweet Jasmine’ baby bag, covered in lots of stitchery and needle turned applique. Let me know what you think to it. I love it, I have hidden a drawstring for security a few inches down from the top, so that the embroidery isn’t too distorted when it is drawn up and I put large roomy pockets inside to hold bottles, baby wipes and the like. We have just started to make ‘Sweet William’ the boys version it is sooo cute
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The main attraction at the show was our lovely wool tweed
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We are having a play around with the tweed to see what kind of things we can make in order to give people ideas, look at these pears I knocked up this afternoon.
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OK so they are not a perfect pair but the tweed is such good fun to play with. Averil has been making a large piece of crazy patchwork today which I will show off soon, we don’t yet know what it will become but we will let you know as soon as we work it…

Closed for Christmas

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Closed for Christmas

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Just letting you all know, the shop will be closed over the Christmas period. Our last day of opening is Sunday 22nd December and we will reopen again on Saturday 4th January 2014. During that time I will still be processing internet orders, so if you need something please feel free to have a look on line at www.quiltingantics.co.uk

If you fancy learning how to make a patchwork quilt, we will be starting new classes in the New Year. Don’t forget if you are stuck for what you want for Christmas you could always get a gift voucher from us, several people have bought their nearest and dearests places on classes.

Anyway for the first time this season I will wish you all a very happy Christmas!