Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Le Challenge #18 - Ink

I think that Ink was a tricky one to interpret, but I have gone for a pattern that has been put into print/INK?!? Is that too loose??

Le Challenge
The Log Cabin Wreath Quilt that was in Quilt Now Magazine - Issue 4 by Jessie Fincham.
I love, love, love this quilt and have been itching to finish it, with me literally just sewing in the loose thread this morning!!
I quilted it in an organic (wonky) spiral way, using Kerry's template to start me off.
Most of the fabrics are from my stash with a few dark green purchases, I didn't realise how hard it is to find the perfect green!!!
The backing is a Moda dot with Robins from Makower and the binding is my newest favourite stripy fabric Clown Stripe in Fire by Michael Miller.
I did add a few more strips to the edges making it finish up at 49"x50".
I machine quilted it as there is just not enough hours in the day for it to have been hand quilted by this Christmas, there is no time for film watching on the sofa until Christmas day at the earliest in this house!!!
Now I just need to get more than one decoration on the tree, I'm really not feeling Christmas this year and normally I love it!!
Honestly, two candy canes and a bauble!! I really need to pull my finger out! 

Friday, 12 December 2014

Sew Mama Sew Winner!

Thank you so so much for all of you who entered, I am amazed at 215 comments!! But, this is a very short and sweet post as Gogglebox is on!!!

So, the winner of my Sew Mama Sew Giveaway as picked my Mr Random was..........

No.4 who is......
The lovely Catrin!!!

Get your address off to me and I will post your prize out on Monday!

Must run I can't miss Steph and Dom!!!
Gogglebox Steph and Dom

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Book Review: The Busy Girl's Guide to Digital Photography

First off I want to say this is a book I bought for myself, with my own pennies back in July, I wasn't given it nor asked to review it. 

So, back in July I was browsing Amazon for holiday reading and although I had already loaded my kindle up with novels, I wanted a book with me to help me get to grips with my Nikon DSLR camera. Ever since I had been given it at Christmas it had mostly stayed on Auto and it had given me some brilliant photos, but I felt I was only using it to a small fraction of its ability.
So, I bought The Busy Girl's Guide to Digital Photography by Lorna Yabsley. (If I'm honest the name very nearly put me off, I don't see why a book should be marketed to women only, when as far as I could see it is very much a book for all.)
It is a well written and clear to use book, it has 4 main chapters on everything from choosing a camera, what different lens are, kit you need and really don't need and how to use the camera. Then a chapter on taking pictures of everything from people, places, animals and interiors, next a chapter on editing the photos and lastly a chapter of case studies of photographers and their business.
I found it was a great book for me, I was able to pick it up, read a chunk and take the camera off auto and play with what I had just read.
By taking the plunge and fiddling with the ISO, Shutter Speed and Aperture I was able to see the real difference it made to my photos.
  My dad at the beach bar, from auto setting to me getting the right photo by changing the exposure.
Changing the shutter speed got me a decent photo of the moonlit sea.
Playing with the exposure again got me a clear well lit grumpy tween!! He will kill me for this shot!!!
And lastly slowing down the shutter speed helped me to get these amazing pictures of the sea mist rolling in across the horizon. I was jump up and down happy to get this shot of the mist looking like a wave, but the husband was less please when I told him I need a stand, as when you slow the shutter speed down the slightest movement will blur the photo.

I'm not saying this book will make me the next Davina Bailey, but it has given me the confidence that the camera manual didn't and it shows so many examples of different shots through the book to help you get the best photo. So I would definitely recommend this book for a clear usable guide to navigating your DSLR and holding your hand to take it off the Auto Settings!
My copy is pretty well thumbed now and I'm still referring back to it constantly, I just wish it had a better name........ like the busy persons guide to digital photography or the no nonsense guide to digital photography! Honestly men can read this book too!! 

Monday, 8 December 2014

Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day!!

Hello and welcome to my little bit of the blogosphere, if you've not been here before, my name is Joanne and I'm a mum of 3, wife of one and am currently owned by a very cute puppy! I live in the outskirts of London and in any spare time I can carve out I sew, knit and generally make a mess to keep myself sane!
I love Sew Mama Sew's Giveaway Day, lots of chances to win, find new blogs or revisit forgotten ones!
So, I'm giving away a copy of Love Patchwork & Quilting Magazine (Issue 10)
and two Fq's.
I will post anywhere in the world that has a postal address, the giveaway will remain open until Friday 12th December (9pm UK time) and I will post out the prize on Monday 15th December.
To enter you can have two chances:

1. Leave a comment telling me your favourite Christmas make.....I do love a Christmas make!!!

2. For a second chance follow me, either on Google Friends (up over there ➞) or on Bloglovin or Feedly  and let me know in a separate comment.

Please, please, please leave an email address if you are a no-reply comment or think you might be! If I can't contact you I will have to pick another winner!

Good luck and thanks for visiting!

*****This giveaway is now closed!!*****

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Penguin in the post......✓

Back at the end of September I held a Blogiversary Giveaway for a handmade cushion and the winner could pick to have me make them a cushion from all the ones I've made and I've made quite a few!!
The winner was the lovely Helen who picked one of these paper pieced cushions from Pretty in Patchwork: Holidays and let me surprise her with which one, as she couldn't decide.
After a bit of thinking I set to work cutting and sewing, but thing got a little crazy so he got put aside for a week or two and last week I finally moved my backside to buy an insert and get him posted off!!
And this morning Helen received him.......no name as yet!?!
I made it with an envelope back.
I quilted him just following his outline and then tried a snowflake like stitch from my machine on the background.
I picked this character as without the Christmas hat on he can be left out on the sofa for the whole winter, rather than just for the Christmas period. Penguins also seem to be a bit popular at the moment what with Monty the Penguin from John Lewis and The Penguins of Madagascar film coming out, which this chap still reminds me of those 'Smile and wave boys, just smile and wave!'

Size - 19"x19"
Fabrics - Too many to list! 

I loved making him and have now lost count of the amount of things I have made from that book, I can honestly say I've had my moneys worth!!! And it's making me want to dig my Penguin and Polar Bear cushions out of the loft.
I'm so pleased that Helen likes him and that this is also a finish from my Q4 list from the 2014 FAL, I actually think this might be my only finish so far.......(hangs head in shame and rushes off to see if there is anything else I can get finished!!)

****** Disclaimer - No Penguins were harmed in the making or posting of this cushion!!*****
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