Thursday, 26 May 2011

Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Results!

I've had fun taking part in Sew Mama Sew's Giveaway again this May.  I entered quite a few myself, (although not as many as last time, due to restricted time) as well as offering a prize.  I don't think I had any success though!  On the other hand, that was more than compensated for by the 33 lovely comments I had (and 4 new followers!!).  It seems that handmade items get far fewer entries than supplies because it comes down to whether readers need or even like the items.  So I was thrilled to get 33!

I think (hope) I replied to each one but please accept my apologies if you didn't get one.  One of the giveaways I entered had well over 500 entries but still managed to reply to me.  I wonder if she used some kind of mass reply-sending function!

Now, down to business:

I chose the winners using the usual on-line Random Number Generator and the first number chosen was 3.  Therefore, Helena from Thumbelena Dreams will be the recipient of the first brooch/corsage.  The RNG next chose number 4 which was Sharon (who doesn't seem to have a blog) who will receive the green brooch/corsage. Congratulations to you both!!  Please let me have your addresses (I've also emailed you with the news).

I searched for something to photograph to make this post a little more interesting to non-winners (hope you had more luck in other giveaways!).  All I have is this glimpse of something I'm currently working on as result of the wool felting fiasco (see last paragraph) I had a little while ago.  I've cut out pieces, blanket stitched edges and auditioned trimmings.  Who knows whether it will come out as I imagine it!  I don't even have a finished image in my mind - just a vague idea, not even a sketch!  Not a good way to go about it really!!  And all the time I have my half-square-triangle quilt at the back of the cupboard in the back of my mind calling me to get on with it.  It's not a very big quilt but it's the biggest I've tackled so I'm feeling a bit intimidated.  However, my new walking foot (for my sewing machine - for the benefit of non-quilters) is on its way so that should help! 

Bye for now
Teresa x

P.S. - DS's leg is healing well and he managed to pass his tree climbing certificate a few days later. Thank you for all your concern :-)

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Sew Mama Sew May Giveaway!

 I hope I'm not too late for the deadline of the Sew Mama Sew May Giveaway Day!!  I've been trying to get online today and there seems to have been a widespread problem stopping any sort of access.  I'll plough ahead anyway and if I'm too late it will just be a little giveaway for my regular readers.  I've taken part in one of Sew Mama Sew giveaways before and it was a great way to find new bloggers, get new followers and try to win lovely things.  It made me feel part of something big (which it is) and it's generous of the people of SMS to give us the opportunity.

I mentioned a while ago that going past 5,000 blog views was a reason to celebrate and I was going to have a giveaway for that (I'm now past 5,500); I have also mentioned in the past that I would have a giveaway to get your views on some brooches/corsages I'm making.  So, using the SMS giveaway event as a platform, I will mark all these things with this giveaway.

I have 2 brooches to giveaway to 2 entrants.  This one is made from layers of cotton and satin topped with a felt circle and a vintage button. 

This one is multi-layers of felt, cotton, satin and silk also topped with a vintage button.  All the materials are reclaimed or recycled except the felt.  I'm disappointed that the colours haven't come out well.  They are much richer in real life!

All I'd like is for you to tell me which one you like best and why (if you know why) to give me some idea of the style that would be most popular.  I'll choose one winner who will get the brooch they prefer then another winner who will get the other one, whether it was their first choice or not!  I wouldn't like to exclude my loyal overseas followers so I will send anywhere.  As requested by SMS, I'll leave the giveaway open until 25th May and post the brooches on 30th.

 Now for some news of what's been going on around here.  Just one item of news really.  Remember I told you my DS had started a gardening business? Well, on Saturday morning he headed out to do a hedge cutting job 5 minutes away.  Twenty minutes later the phone rang and it was DS who told OH he'd cut his leg!!!  I was frantic until I spoke to him myself!!  Luckily, it wasn't too serious but it wasn't very pleasant watching him have 3 stitches put into his leg (or for him having them - the local anaesthetic didn't work very well). The lady doctor laughed when he pulled his trousers down to show her the wound  - I think it was relief that it wasn't a bigger injury but DS thought she was laughing at his baggy, Beano jockey shorts.  Now what was it your mother always says about underwear and getting knocked down by a bus?!!

Don't forget to enter the giveaway and good luck.
Bye for now
Teresa x

Edited to add:  Thank you for all your fabulous comments!! This giveaway is now closed and a winner will be chosen and notified shortly.  Teresa x

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Block Party?

Now we're well into May I was beginning to wonder why I hadn't received my Tag Square Bee blocks for March and April.  Then, lo and behold, through the door comes this beauty!  It's my April Block from Floh Stiche.  I asked for autumn colours and this certainly fits the bill.

The way the rota works meant that Floh Stiche was the recipient of my May block.  Blues of every kind was the colour scheme Floh requested and I had no trouble finding these. The spotty fabric is one I received in a recent scrap swap organised by Ali.

Speaking of swaps, I have to apologise to my swap partner  Mary Emmens for not posting about the lovely parcel she sent me in the second swap Ali arranged. Since I was having a major splurge on moving my stash out to my shed, the fabric got caught up with it all and I didn't get a photo. But if you link to Mary's post above you can see what she sent me.   She was also thoughtful enough to research from my blog what I would like and made sure some of the fabric was recycled!

My parcel (the photo of which I deleted, thinking I'd already posted it) went to Linnhe of Wee Mindings who makes cute bags and brooches.

OH and I went to the wedding on Saturday of a chap he has known since he was a boy (the chap was a boy, not OH!).  It was a civil ceremony, which we've only experienced once before (OH's brother) a long time ago, and, although all the trappings were present, the general 'feeling' was very different from a church wedding. Personally, I wouldn't feel truly married if it didn't take place in a church but I understand that a generation (or 2) has grown up without appreciating even the tradition of such an occasion never mind the religious aspect, and that they probably feel more comfortable in this setting.
It was a lovely day with a happy, friendly atmosphere - from the actual ceremony to the evening party.  The hotel where it was held is very popular for weddings - my photos don't really do it justice so if you want a true picture of the place take a look at the website.
The wedding reception tables - the general colour theme of this wedding was blue

The beautiful floral arrangements that lined the way to the registrar (is it called an aisle at a civil ceremony?) and were then put on the tables for the reception.
OH and I thoroughly enjoyed the day - from the brides tears to the funny speeches to the white chocolate fountain in the evening (sorry no pic).  It made a change after last weeks party, to relax and enjoy a function with someone else worrying about what was supposed to happen next!!

Bye for now
Teresa x

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

A Golden Wedding Celebration Weekend!

My sisters, brother and I have been secretly organising a surprise party for our parents' Golden Wedding Anniversary.  The actual event was on Saturday evening but the whole weekend has been a party of sorts!!  On Friday evening we took our parents out for a drink and surprised them with the appearance of our brother, his 2 children and grandchild (their great-grandchild) who none of us had yet seen.  Everyone got quite emotional. It was quite a feat keeping them hidden and deciding who they were going to stay with so that the secret was kept.

Our parents on their wedding day
 The parents had been told a few days before that we were going out for a family meal.  We were on pins worrying that someone would let the secret out before the party (a few people did say the wrong thing but the comments were explained away somehow). 

The anniversary cake made by a clever local lady.  The flowers are all made of icing!
We were pleased when everyone started arriving at the venue and that they all came in time to be there before our parents arrived.  When they came in, everyone stood up clapping and cheering, then by the look on their faces, we knew the secret had been safe.    
It was also our mother's 70th birthday the same weekend. 
The evening was a great success with everyone saying what a wonderful party it was as they left.  After my brother and his family had left for home on Sunday, 17 of us, including our parents, went out for lunch. We were lucky to get a booking with that number of people seeing as it was a last minute decision and we only rang 2 hours in advance.

We had the balloons for the tables delivered and spent a couple of hours getting the venue ready
It was a wonderful weekend all round and now we all have lovely memories of a great occasion. 

 A little relaxation was in order after such a hectic time.  On Sunday evening I finished off these 2 pin cushions with button centres and put together this brooch/corsage.

As I mentioned I was going to do in a previous post aaaaaaaages ago, it's a modified version of my first attempt but I'm still not happy with it. It's made from reclaimed cotton and silk with new wool felt at the back.  I think it might look better without the felt.  Version 3 coming up!!

Bye for now
Teresa x

Thursday, 5 May 2011

Royal Blue!

I haven't time for many words today so I'll let the pictures to the talking.  I'm also sorry I haven't had time to catch up with your blogs on my Reader lately.  My siblings and I have been busy arranging a surprise party, which is taking place this weekend, that has taken up quite a lot of time.

I was determined to get to the bluebell wood this year before the ferns grew up and swamped the flowers, so OH and I popped along one day after he finished work, while I was still on holiday. It's the same wood as in the photo of my children, taken about 20 years ago, in this old post.

Entrance to the Bluebell Wood a few miles from home

Mounds (that are thought to be the remains of an old fort) covered with bluebells

Close-up detail of the wild bluebells

A last look on the way out

Royal Wedding celebration desserts :-)

You can never have too much dessert!!

Royal Wedding party at a friend's house before all the guests had arrived.  It was overcast and threatening rain but not too cold to sit outside.
Next time I'll have news on the surprise party and hopefully a bit it stitching.
Bye for now
Teresa x