Wednesday, 29 December 2010

I hope all of you had a lovely Christmas! I'm still enjoying this holiday season by spending lots of time with those I love. {and very little time online}
Since I haven't done much sewing lately I thought I'd show you some of the things I made in 2010...

2010 was a pretty good creative year if I do say so myself.

Little did I know when I started this blog how much fun I would have connecting with all of you crafty people from all over the world. Or how much time I would spend trying to take just the right pictures to post on my blog. And most of all how great it feels to read your lovely comments and emails! It's been such good fun!

So what's coming next year...?
I'm thinking about changing my blog name...
I will be working with friends on an exciting new project {yes it involves quilts!} wish me luck!
There will be a daschund popping up somewere, once at the very least.
I'm bound to swap a thing or two, there will be a quilt or three and some pillows, pincushions, mug rugs, handmade gifts and well you don't really want me to list all these do you? ;-)
And hopefully many more exciting new creative adventures to share with all of you!

I wish you all a very happy and creative New Year!

x Leila

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Dear Mr. Postman...

...thank you for bringing me this wonderful package!

My Favorite Little Quilt Swap Received!!!
~Katie Jumps Rope in the Flea Market and then Sits Down~

Received from Lucinda isn't she amazing?! This was by far my favorite of all the little quilts in this swap soooo happy it's mine now :-)

Should you feel like starting the year off with a nice swap over on Flickr, the deadline for the second round is 31st of January. No sign ups, just finish a quilt and send in pictures to the swap host before the 31st.

x Leila

Monday, 20 December 2010

Boy Quilt {finished}

I feel pretty proud of myself that I managed to finish this quilt in time for christmas.!

Boy Quilt {finished}

It measures 44"x70" made with Urban Circus and Kona solids from Mandy's lovely shop
My little man didn't think too much of it at first, but after a quick feel of the soft flannel I backed it in, he said it was all right. I caught him pulling it onto the couch with him and cuddling up under it though, when he thought mummy wasn't looking of course!

Boy Quilt {finished}

I searched long and hard to find the right voile to back this quilt with. And although I found plenty of gorgeous {Anna Maria Horner} voiles all of them were much too girly. This flannel I found works perfect, it's the right colours not too heavy, no real pile and soft soft soft!

My little monster's found another christmas present early {I need to improve my gift hiding skills!}...

...boys will be boys so this is the one he really likes! It's starting to look a lot like christmas here :-)

x Leila

Saturday, 18 December 2010

You are all rockstars!!

Thank you, thank you, thank you!
And a big huge welcome to my newest readers, I really appreciate you all taking the time to click that follow me button,  I'm looking forward to getting to know you all :-)

But can I just say this...holy cow!! I didn't know what hit me when I got each and every one of your 408 beautiful messages in my inbox! I tried to reply to the comments as they came in but after about a 100 or so I had to give up as I couldn't even copy paste a 'thank you' fast enough to keep up lol!

As for the winner...{can you imagine that I thought I would  just write your names down and put them in a bowl...silly me lol!}

True Random Number generator in it's infinite wisdom has declared....

{no idea how to get that image up here so you'll just have to trust me on this}

Number 367 wich is Miss Muffin who said:
Ms Muffin said... 367 
Thanks for this great giveaway! Come by my blog and enter mine if you want to! You could win some handmade buttons .... Love Ms Muffin

Thank you all so much for playing!

x Leila

Monday, 13 December 2010

Give Away Day!

This Give Away is now closed, the winner will be announced tomorrow. Thank you all so very much for playing!

It's that time again....Give Away Day hosted by Sew Mama Sew is here- yay!
I can't wait to start browsing through all the blogs that are participating this time round. I love finding new inspiring blogs and getting a chance to win some fabulous goodies to boot :-)
So without further ado {ahem!} Here's what I'm offering up for grabs:

Katie Jump Rope {Mug Rug}

A mug rug made out of 1" hexies in mainly  Katie Jump Rope fabric by Denyse Schmidt{there's one Moda Freebird print in there too} What is a mug rug? you might ask, well it's simple really as you can see, it's a rectangular mini quilt that serves as a coaster for your favorite hot drink with room for something sweet on the side.

With the mug rug you will also win some Katie Jump Rope fabric to play with ~ yay!


I was lucky enough to get hold of some bits of this out of print fabric and want to share some of it with one of you. You will receive one fat quarter of the blue daisies, the rest of the prints are generous sized scraps {approx.8"x 10"} enough for a small project like a mug rug.

To Enter leave me a comment on this post including your email address before December 17th. I would love it if you'd become a follower of my blog, but you don't have to do so to play :-)
Only one entry per person please. I will announce the winner Saturday the 18th.
Good luck!

x Leila

Please check your profile settings, if you're a 'no reply' blogger and you don't leave an email address in your comments there is no way of contacting you should you win! If you're not sure what I mean by 'no reply' blogger read this Post it will improve your chances of winning anything, anywhere by a 100% I promise ;-)

Saturday, 11 December 2010

St, Nicholas, Heather Ross & Ane Brun {it's a sorta fairytale}

On the 5th of December we celebrate "Sinterklaas" in Holland, he's a different kind of Santa Claus. It's mainly for the kids, they get lots of presents. But if you've been particularly good you might get lucky enough to get a pressie yourself :-)


I simply adore these prints. They're so delicate and pretty!
I must have been on someone's good list because not only was I spoiled with fabric I got some beautiful music as well! I'm really into these scandinavian singers lately..

Check back in soon for my first give away....!

x Leila

Monday, 6 December 2010

Zig~Zag Quilt Finished!

I finished this quilt a while back actually. But it has taken me a good long time to get some half decent shots of it. I'm honestly not the best photographer on a good day. But these dark and gloomy days have really thrown me off.
After reading every tip I could find on how to improve picture quality religiously I managed to create this rather fun mosaic to show off my quilt. Inspired by the fabulous pictures of Brooke, go have a look she's really talented!

Zig~Zag Quilt

So, a bit about this quilt:
Fabrics are Hope Valley by Denyse Schmidt I got mine from Raystitch and Kona Ash from Simply Solids. Rachel was lovely in replacing one of the FQ's wich had a manufacturing problem, it got here almost a day after I'd sent her an email! How sweet is that!? :-)
It measures about  56" x 70" {140x 175 cms}.

Zig~Zag Quilt {Binding Detail}

I used a wonderful tutorial by Crazy Mom Quilts for making this no triangles zig zag quilt. I tweeked it a little to make it work for me. I used fat quarters instead of the long quarters suggested, because that's what I had. Ten of them instead of 9 as well. I also added some Kona Ash to the top and bottom rows so as not to have to cut through the points in squaring up and binding the quilt. I can really recommend this, it's a little extra piecing but it looks much better I think. This is by far the easiest way to make a zig~zag quilt I can think of! It's so nice not to have to deal with all those bias cut half square triangles!

 I pieced the backing with some left overs and more Kona Ash, machine quilted on the diagonal. 
Meanwhile the snow here is melting during the day and freezing solid again at night. It's dangerous out there! Wich only means I've got a good excuse to stay in and sew some more :-)

Thanks for stopping by!
x Leila

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Work in Progress Wednesday {Christmas Sewing}

How cold is it where you live?
I snickered a little when the weatherman predicted a 'Siberian cold front' yesterday. Thinking it's just snow how bad can it be? But he wasn't wrong,  it's flippin cold here!!

Perfect excuse to get some more sewing done ;-) As so many of you, I have decided to go for home-made rather then store bought presents this year. Trying to keep the costs down but I also really like home made gifts, especially for christmas they go rather well together.

For obvious reasons I can not show more than these sneek peeks.

Are you looking for some home-made gifts inspiration?
Head on over to Sew Mama Sew for The Ultimate Handmade Holidays Master List 2010

x Leila

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Work in progress Wednesday ~ Boy Quilt

With every quilt I make my boy walks in to run his little fingers over the fabric, feeling if it's going to be soft enough for him. "Is this one for me mummy?' If you want it to be this one could be for you, he runs a critical eye over all the fabrics used, spots some flowers  and says no flowers are for girls mum. {duh!}

When I was busy making the birds & empty cages quilt I hoped maybe that one would find my little man's approval, no flowers no pink he should love this. But no, he looked, and altough he liked it  those birds were supposed to be in their cages not on top of them because their owners would get really sad if their pets just flew off!

So naturally I wanted to make a quilt especially for him, it had to be soft with lots of blue {what else!} and not a hint of flowers or pink in sight.
It was actually Mr. M that picked out the Urban Circus for me, I was browsing through Kona Solids over at Simply Solids Mr. M waiting with  creditcard in hand {I imagine tapping his fingers as well }when he spotted some fun elephants. So he put a FQ bundle in with my order of Kona snow. I had already raided my LQS for all the blue and green solids they had and I was so pleased to find they matched the Urban Circus fabrics wonderfully!

Each block in this quilt is different, some are similar with different fabrics, some are unique. It took me a bit longer than it would normally take to finish this quilt top but I think it's totally worth it.
To make this quilt extra soft I'm thinking about backing it either with flannel or voile.
I'm thinking voile would be the softest of the two, I've got some bits of Liberty cotton lawn and I've heard voile is quite similar in feel to that. Having not much experience with either I could really use your opinions, wich backing fabric will make this quilt the softest?

x Leila

Monday, 22 November 2010

Swapping {Hoops} yay! post!

I received my lovely hoop from Sarah today!!! 

Here it is on my wall with two hoops I made and rejected for the swap, it's the bottom one with the bird. I love the text balloon! {in case you can't read it,  it says 'are we there yet? are we there yet, are we there yet?''}

Not only did she send me this amazing hoop but also some pretty cool goodies, check this out!

Thanks a bunch Sarah!

How are you coming along with your christmas 'to do' lists? Seems that for every thing I check off my list something else gets put on!

x Leila

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Are you still there?

If you are you're my most favorite person in the world! I've been such a bad blogger lately~ sorry!
So time for some catching up.

I've joined yet another swap over on Flickr. I'm feeling like I should join a support group now "I'm Leila and I have a swapping habit" lol! But they're such good fun and I figured since I only join one at a time it's ok ~right?
Here's my entry made from this fab tutorial

Itty Bitty Ticker Tape Quilt 

This swap works a little different from the others I've entered so far. 
Instead of us all getting paired up with a partner we send our entries in anonymously. All players get to vote on their favorite mini quilt. Then after everything is added up our swap host divides the quilts up according to votes and popularity. Most popular quilt entries are more likely to get the quilt they voted for first. 

It pretty much works like we used to pick teams in gym class!
Now honestly, I don't think I ever was the last girl standing when it was time to pick teams, but this swap might be payback time for my luck in school!

 I hope my Itty Bitty Ticker Tape Quilt isn't going to be the girl nobody picked to be on their team!

I'm waiting for the weather to clear up a bit so I can take pictures of my latest quilt finish.
Be back soon!

x Leila

Friday, 12 November 2010

Tuesday, 9 November 2010


 Do you have odd things that remind you of christmas?
 It's probably because it was this time of year, two years ago when one of my friends gave me a copy of a CD. On it was written a name; Nina Kinert and 'because this is soooo beautiful'
And it was, and it still is.

Hope you enjoyed that!
 I'm busy trying to sew things for christmas but my machine is acting up, it's got tension issues and started to skip stitches, not good!

I'll be back with some on-topic post another day :-)
x Leila

Friday, 5 November 2010

Swapping {Hoops} part two

I've made another hoop for my partner in the Scrappy {Hoops} swap over on Flickr.
Something quite different just to see how she would react!
I've used woolfelt on a  linen background. I wanted a more natural look but still colourful. Thinking about things we most definately had in common but not neccesarily sewing related, I came up with 'breathe' Because we all do! ;-)

Although I'm pleased with both hoops I've made I'm finding it pretty difficult to translate my partners likes into a design.
Perhaps I'm just overthinking this a bit too much!
I'd better make my mind up I would like to get this posted monday.

All grey and raining here today. Perfect day for some sewing :-) 
What are you making/ swapping?

x Leila

Sunday, 31 October 2010

It's just an empty cage girl..

If you came from Amy's blog and are looking for my  Blogger's Quilt Festival entry  check here

My bird quilt is finished yay!
A little info, this quilt measures approx 57" x 72" {143 x180 cm}
Made with Laurie Wisbrun's Tufted Tweets and some Katie Jump Rope by Denyse Schmidt for the binding. Solids are from my local market.
Hand quilted with vintage white embroidery floss, black silk and Sulky in grey.

It's been horrible weather so I had to take pictures inside unfortunately. This was the best I could do! This is my first {and certainly not my last} pieced backing. I drew more cages on the back used up some left over bits of tweets and added the white  and black because I'd ran out of grey. I love how it's turned out even though the design was quite random.

This quilt has a lot of 'me' in it.  Often I find inspiration in song lyrics, this happened to be the case with this quilt as well. The two lines that kept running through my head were "it's just an empty cage girl, if you kill the bird" from Crucify by Tori Amos. And "all your life you were only waiting for this moment to arrive"  from Paul McCartney's Blackbird. Once I saw Tufted Tweets I just knew they'd be perfect for my black 'ravens' and empty cages quilt.

Quilting is therapy for me, as I know it is for a lot of you out there as well. It offers me the opportunity to have a creative outlet for my emotions and things I go through in life. This last year has been a tough one for me and my battle's not over yet. Five years ago I ended an abusive relationship and it's been a long lasting battle to reclaim my own life and freedom. These birds and their empty cages symbolize these last five years for me.

It took me a while to figure out just how to quilt this but I decided to repeat one of the patterns in the fabric for the quilting {the connected oval shapes} and I added some vertical and horizontal stripes in various widths. 

This orange binding is completely out of my comfort zone! But I've been trying to overcome my fear of orange {I blame football for that!} and I'm really pleased with how it looks!

I love this bit on the back where the quilted cage overlaps the one I drew!

Somehow I feel this quilt's very appropriate for Halloween. Maybe not in a traditional witches and pumpkin kind of way but the colours and the ravens feel very much in theme with the season to me.

Happy Halloween!

x Leila

p.s. The inspiration lyrics for my next two quilts are...."I wanna really really really wanna zigazig ah!" {yup that's the Spice Girls and I'm feeling the shame! ;-)} and it's a tie between "From the moment I could talk I was ordered to listen" & "you're my pride and joy etc."

Friday, 29 October 2010

~ Bloggers Quilt Festival ~

This is my first entry in the Blogger's Quilt Festival. Last time round I had such good fun hopping blogs and reading about all the wonderful quilts that are made. So I decided to join in on the fun and share a quilt with you all.

You can read about this quilt here as well, I'm sorry about the poor quality of the pictures, this was when I first started blogging and didn't have much experience in taking nicer pictures of my quilts yet!

I picked this quilt because this was the quilt that sparked my quilting addiction. I started quilting 5 years ago when I was pregnant with my son. I made him a patchwork blanket and a baby quilt and had a go at some larger sized quilts. None of wich turned out great but still, I enjoyed making those quilts. When I started making this quilt I hadn't sewn in such long time that I had to look under a pile of old fabrics and dig out my machine first!

This quilt was made for my friend's daughter Lola. She came over one day and saw some pillows I'd made and loved them. So I showed her some of the quilts I had done and she asked me to make one for her daughter.
I started off with a different design, pieced the entire quilt even started to quilt it but I just hated it! So I decided to start over again, and I'm really glad I did.
I drew this design on tracing paper, taped it to my window and traced it on a piece of white fabric. It was my first applique and embroidery quilt and I was so pleased with how it turned out.

A lot of time and love went into stitching and hand quilting this. But my friend absolutely loves this quilt and I'm sure this is one that will be kept in their family for many years to come!
I've been on a non stop sewing spree since :-D

Thanks for stopping by!

x Leila

Monday, 25 October 2010

Swapping {Hoops}

I'm back!
Cornwall was so beautiful I'm already missing it!
But I missed my old Singer too, and it didn't take much persuasion to get to work on something special for someone secret.

I joined The Scrappy {Hoops} Swap over on Flickr. Another really cool swap  hosted by Heather and Kerri . There's just so much creativity in these groups it's absolutely amazing to watch what everyone comes up with!

Here's a hoop I made that might be heading towards my partner.
I'm not sure yet if she'll like it so I'm just dangling this one in front of her....

in the hopes she'll bite!

x Leila

Saturday, 16 October 2010

about Bee Blocks & Cornwall

This month's Bee  blocks are for Petits Elefants

She sent us all a lovely collection of sweet flowery fabrics a mix of Wonderland, Hunky Dory and Tweet Tweet, plus some Kona Ash. Asking for square in square blocks, and straight lines.

I've really enjoyed this month again, I'm loving this Bee!

I've packed my suitcase for a little trip to Cornwall with Mr. M. I'll be back in a week :-)

See you again soon!

x Leila

Friday, 15 October 2010

I won!!

A little while ago I won this give away over at Amber's blog!
Today my goodies came!!

A lovely bundle of red and black fabrics and four patterns!
Instead of the one she was giving away she sent four of her fabulous patterns, so generous! I'm really excited about this, I have never made a quilt from a pattern before and now I'll have four to chose from. 
Thank you so much Amber!

Sunday, 10 October 2010

~Cathedral Windows~

Cathedral windows pillow.

Made as a birthday gift for a friend.

I'm having a quiet sunday today. How's your weekend?

x Leila

Thursday, 7 October 2010

Work in progress Wednesday ~ quilting

Well it's not wednesday but work in progress thursday just doesn't sound as good!

I've been overwhelmed with all the positive responses I got on this quilt top. Even Laurie Wisbrun herself commented on flickr!!! {I nearly fell off my chair believe me!}

The pressure is really on to get this quilted!
It took me a while to come up with a plan how to quilt this, but I've sorta kinda figured it out now. I often make some changes along the way. But usually once I make a good start the rest follows automatically.

For the grey areas I decided I wanted to repeat a pattern of the fabric in the quilting. These connected oval dots are on the green and red fabrics. I've quilted them with white DMC threads my mum got me in France. It was almost a shame to open them, the box was still sealed in it's original paper!
But I needed them to quilt!

I've used black silk to quilt on the lines of the birdcages, small stitches, and I like how they show up on the back now as well.

Still have a lot to quilt before it's finished! I do enjoy handquilting, it's very soothing to me :-)

What are you making?

x Leila

Monday, 4 October 2010

Scrappy Pincushion Swap

Look what I got!

My swap partner domtoniburton in the Scrappy Pincushion Swap swap sent me this lovely pincushion along with some great goodies!

It came all the way from Australia complete with little koala and echidna {an australian hedgehog so I've been told } buttons ~ so cool!

It's been a really good post week for me! 

x Leila

Thursday, 30 September 2010

Fabric Love

~Hope Valley by Denyse Schmidt~

I've been stalking  Ray Stitch heading over to the site at odd hours just so I could stare at this lovely bundle and sigh.
Wanting it so badly that all sorts of crazy ideas popped into my head. A 100 ways to break the bank for fabric! 

 To end this madness I very subtly pointed at this stack of goodness so Mr. M would know what to get me for christmas.

Well christmas came early this year!!

Nothing says 'I love you' better than a fat quarter bundle in your mail box :-D

Have a good day!

x Leila