Tuesday morning Pitch and Stitch - 10.00am to 1.00pm

Tuesday morning Pitch and Stitch - 10.00am to 1.00pm
This hanging from Annie Downs' Hatched and Patched book should be in every caravan as a cushion or decoration!

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

And We're Off.....Again!

So, after the summer break the Medallion course resumed - and we were packed to the rafters!  Most exciting was the lovely fabric delivered by Lynne - from Cupcake Cottons in Burford, and Jan - from Village Fabrics in Wallingford!

They let us sell these fabrics in the workshop and there is such a lovely selection - very tempting!

Sheila showed us a couple of the quilts she has been working on - this is the first time she has been down this year so we were all pleased to see her.  Sheila makes all her quilts, from start to finish, by hand so they really are stunning.

The photo of Sheila's Wedding Band quilt above really does not do it justice; the sun shining on it has bleached out the lovely pale blues which is a great shame. 

And, of course, Alice showed us the Medallion she made and has had professionally quilted which was stunning

Lynne also produced her new Quilt-as-you-Go Baltimore so some of us will be making that this year
Lots of work then.

Of course, with 13 of us in the workshop there was an awful lot of chat and stories told.  Jenny asked why some of the stories about things I see on and around the farm don't get printed on the blog - and I explained that anything too sad, or risqué, or outrageous can only be told face to face......

I will say, however, that there has been a lot of bereavement recently, both in my family and friend's, and everyone here today has something to worry about.  Getting together with friends and being able to talk about stuff and sharing those worries can be just as therapeutic as using a needle and thread and making something beautiful.  It really can take some of the weight off of our shoulders!

And I nearly forgot - even Jonathan was happy because I got two pots of Ros's delicious honey!

Friday, 25 September 2015

Sometimes you just have to stop.....

At 7.25 this evening George said he had to go off and ring the bells.  Because it was getting dark, I followed him out a few minutes later to shut the chicken and geese in.  To my left an almost-full moon was rising, and to my right the sun was setting.  Ahead of me the green fields stretched down to the village.  And then the bells started ringing - half muffled in remembrance of an East Garston villager who died fighting in the First World War.  When I got up to the house Jonathan was sitting on the bench outside of the workshop listening and I sat with him.  An owl was hooting, a bat was flying around us, and the sound of the bells across the valley was beautiful.  It really was a moment to stop, listen and think.

As it got colder we came back into the kitchen which was full of the scent of the sweet peas I'd picked earlier - they've finally, just before the first frost will come, decided to bloom as if it was midsummer

Sometimes I'm so busy being busy, I forget how lucky we are....

Thursday, 24 September 2015

Such a lot has been happening...

What a busy couple of weeks we've had!

We had a lovely time in Jersey visiting our daughter Victoria and were pleased to see she is settling in to her life on the Island with Ben. 

I think she had very high heals on in this picture.

I am not going to moan about the cancelled ferry home, the foul weather, or anything else - I'm going to concentrate on the positives!

We stayed at the lovely Five Roads Farm, in Millais Cottage

where they grow, of course, Jersey potatoes.  It was their 'relax' time - planting the potatoes starts in December.  We of course visited all the corners of the island and all the beaches


and on the second to last day the sun shone and I got to swim in the sea which was wonderful

The only (sort of ) problem was that whilst I was on Jersey I should have been here to, firstly, man a stand at the East Garston Art and Craft weekend, and secondly, be here to host Coastal Colours who were showing their wares at our workshop.  Of course, as is the way here, friends and neighbours rallied round.  Sally, Dawn and Jackie looked after the Lorne Hill Farm workshops stand

Apparently it was a lot of fun and lots of people came.

Coastal Colours were a huge success at our Pitch and Stitch on Tuesday. They spin and dye their own wool and Sandra said they were a lovely couple.  Sandra said at one point she asked if anything could be done with the bags of alpaca wool we have:

Apparently Graham pulled out a wodge (obviously not the technical term) and 10 minutes later produced this

We are really looking forward to them holding a two day spinning and dying workshop here next September - and both Sandra and I keep thinking about whether to visit e bay and look up spinning wheels........


Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Harvest Home...

Finally! - The last load was brought in at about 5.30 this afternoon - just as George and the East Garston Tower were ringing out for the Queen!  Now to get on with the ploughing, cultivating and drilling for next year!

We had had a really enjoyable day making Japanese patches in the workshop - the first class of our Autumn term -  so everyone was happy!

So, we are off to Jersey this weekend which is wonderful but I have slipped up fairly spectacularly. 

First of all, on Saturday (2.00pm to 6.00pm) and Sunday (1.00 to 4.00pm) East Garston is holding an Arts and Crafts weekend at the Friends Meeting House.  I have a table - but won't be there!  Luckily for me some of our regulars have offered to stand in so if you are around do pop in and have a look.  There are a lot of crafty people in East Garston so it should be fun.

Then, on Tuesday morning,  Coastal Colours will be having a stand at our Pitch and Stitch session.

I am so sorry to be missing this.  Graham and Lindsey are down from Lancashire for the Bristol Wool Show, and will be staying on our CL on their way home.  They are knitters, spinners and hand dyers, specialising in dying luxury 4ply and lace weight knitting yarns.

Graham has sent me some pictures:


Don't the colours look beautiful!  I am so sorry to be missing them but the good news is that they will be coming back next year to do a two day spinning and dying workshop which will be brilliant.
So, I reckon East Garston is the place to be this weekend and on Tuesday!
Oh, and by the way, regarding the Christmas wreaths we didn't have pictures of for the schedule - we now have them.  The wreath can be made in felt or fabric, and looks like this:



Sunday, 6 September 2015


Today, at last, the sun is shining.  For the first time in weeks and weeks and weeks I was able to do something I love doing - I got out the deckchair and sat in it and did nothing.  Absolutely nothing - and for quite a long time.  I listened to all the sounds of summer we have been deprived of this year - bees buzzing, drowsy flies, the sheep bleating on the hill, the chickens clucking and scratching around, the geese honking and hissing at possible trespassers, the tractors and corn trailers going up and down the hill, the baler baling up all the straw and all the birds singing.

There was a great deal of cheeping in the front porch so I decided to keep watch - and the swallows have had more chicks!  Mum and Dad were flying in and out all afternoon:

and by climbing up on the table and pointing the camera in what I hoped was the right direction I got a picture of one of the chicks:


I went to pull up some potatoes and beans for dinner - to have with our joint of pork (and 'r' in the month so pork is back on the menu) and saw how all the flowers have finally decided to come out

including the strawflowers so I can brighten up the kitchen.

See - a bit of sunshine and the world is a brighter place.


Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Autumn Workshop Schedule

Well, I finally have our Autumn Schedule out there and we have a lot of exciting things lined up.  The full schedule and descriptions can be seen on the website, but here's a taster:

9th September we have Japanese Patches:

23rd September a Primitive Summer Stitchery:
7th October Smocking with Jill Richards:
14th October - Yoko Saito Town Quilt with Lynne Johnson

21st October Tumbling Cubes made from Kath's Kubes kits

4th November Primitive Autumn Stitchery
11th November Antique Wedding Sampler quilt with Lynne Johnson

18th November Modular Knitting (also known at Short Piece or Domino Knitting)

Wednesday 2nd December - zipped bag

and on the 9th December a Scandinavian style Christmas wreath.

Of course, the last Wednesday of every month will, as ever, been spent working on our Medallion quilts with Lynne.

Then, finally, on the 12th and 16th December we will be making evergreen wreaths with Linda.