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!

Saturday, 31 October 2015

What A Show!

If you haven't made it to the Little Coxwell Quilters' exhibition in Steventon yet, you must go tomorrow.

I called in today, in between walking and exercising dogs, and it is wonderful.

How a little group of 12 quilters could produce this amount of work is astounding.  Here are some of my favourite pieces:

Our own Lynne Johnson's Mountmellick, adapted from Di Ford's pattern

Lynne's felt and tweed White House hanging
Catriona Karney had done a lot of work with felt which I really liked:

as well as her beautiful quilts.  This is a block from 'Duck Egg Quilt' by Catriona - a Di Ford Pattern
I thought this little Flower Garden designed by Di Ford and made by Mary Cotton was really pretty.

And then a surprise from Lynne:

'St Neots' - not her usual colours but I absolutely loved it!

Above is a block from 'My Blue Heaven' by Mavis Christer - I liked the way she had quilted it.

A traditional Pinwheel Quilt beautifully made by Julia Edmonds:

An amazing Dear Jane Civil War quilt made by Mavis Christer, in beautiful Liberty fabrics
 - so much work in every little square:

Fantastic Lynne Edwards' Baston Creek Medallion made by Jenny Garlick:
and I loved Jenny's Lynnette Anderson Flower Spool quilt:
Catriona's Basket Weave centre quilt and some stunning bags she has made:
and a table of ongoing projects:
and finally, what we all like to see, quilts which have been passed down through the generations:
So many beautiful quilts that were so inspiring, and displayed beautifully.  I would like to put up photos of all them - but since there were more than 80 quilts alone, this is the best I can do!
What a show!

Thursday, 29 October 2015

Little Coxwell Quilters

Really Looking forward to the Little Coxwell Quilter's exhibition this weekend.  The work they do (and they include Lynne Johnson who holds so many amazing workshops for us) is absolutely stunning - both inspiring and demotivating at the same time, so my next blog should have some beautiful pictures.

If you live anywhere near Steventon, make sure you go along!  The Village Hall is on the green - and apparently there are two very good pubs there so your driver can refresh himself while waiting for you!

Sunday, 25 October 2015

New Arrivals

What a lovely sunny weekend to welcome our new arrivals to Lorne Hill Farm.

Yesterday 6 chickens arrived (courtesy of Dom) from Nuneaton.  The farmer had 5,000 one year old layers to re-house - they only keep them for a year - and we said we'd take six.  All 5,000 were re-housed over two weekends which I thought was amazing.

We put them in a 'holding pen' until letting them join the others once the sun had set.

They were in a pretty sorry state, but apparently feather up very quickly.  When I opened up the chicken house this morning only one came out voluntarily, and I had to push the others out, but they were soon pecking around for the corn.
And then this morning George and I went over to the Dogs Trust to bring Millie home.  So far, so good,

She and Reuben played together happily

and I'm not sure yet who's in charge, but Millie seems very gentle and when I took them both out in the paddock Reuben showed off that he knew how to play 'fetch', so hopefully things will work out just fine.
Welcome to Lorne Hill Farm, Millie

Oh - and by the way, Jonathan's been busy cutting Hazel for Morris sticks ready for our Open Workshop in the Village Hall on 14th November - so if you've got the slightest inclination to leap around brandishing sticks and ringing bells - perhaps you should give it a go......

Thursday, 22 October 2015

We went to the Dog Home to get a collie......

Now that Reuben no longer has poor old Mr Bojangles for company, we decided he needs a new companion and so a visit to the Dogs Trust at Hamstead Marshall was in order.

We had looked on line and seen a nice looking Collie so when we got there we filled out the paperwork and wrote that we wanted a male Collie.  They sent us round to have a look and a small part of my heart sank.  He was, indeed, another Reuben: full of life, slightly nervy, quite jumpy - did I really want two of them?  Yes, definitely.  So we went back to the office and I told them we were interested in the Collie.
"Really?  We have a sweet little Beagle looking for a home."
"She's really sweet".
"Oh no - we don't want a girl"
"We'll just bring her round so you can have a look."

Millie is coming home to live with us on Sunday.

She came home on Tuesday to make sure Reuben approved and they got on really well.  In preparation of having a girl in the house Reuben has been to the vet's and is now sitting at my feet with a satellite dish round his neck - poor old thing!

Meanwhile, Jonathan and George are busy giving the sheep their annual trim and pedicure before being introduced to the rams on Bonfire night

Five rams to 200 sheep!

And talking of Suffolks (four of the rams are Suffolks), Monday night we went to a talk by Louis De Bernieres, who lives in Norfolk, and who wrote Captain Correlli's Mandolin.  What an entertaining, interesting and witty gentleman - we thought he was wonderful and I'm really looking forward to reading The Dust That Falls From Dreams - his new book.

There was a bit of a show and tell at Tuesday morning's Pitch and Stitch:

Louise brought her memory quilt to work on:

and was using her Grandmother's old sewing kit
with, of course, beeswax from her own hives.

And Jackie brought the two Babygro quilts she has made:


So cute and so much to look at.

I was knitting......I'm always saying how knitting takes a huge amount of concentration for me - and here's the proof
Thanks for the picture Veronica - I couldn't be more knotted up if I was doing Yoga: I never do knitting to relax!

Sunday, 11 October 2015

Smocking and then a Day Out!

What a very busy week!

Wednesday brought a surprise in that my Sunflowers have finally decided to bloom - in October!

And then on with the Smocking workshop - Jill Richards from Smocked Frocks (she'd just finished her 1,000th dress) took the class and she was brilliant.  Her smocked dresses are so beautiful

and we were fired with enthusiasm.  The 'other' table (as it came to be called) really got the hang of it and were making beautiful samplers.  'Our' table, which included Sandra  and me, struggled a bit.  In fact, it was rather like when my father tried to teach me long division...He'd show me how to do it, I'd be thrilled that I'd finally got it, then he'd walk away and I'd say "Come back, I've forgotten again".  Poor Jill was back and forth from Sandra and me all day!  However, we were inspired and will be furiously bidding on the pleating machine that Jackie let slip she saw on ebay!

This is Carol's sampler
and these are all our samplers

But I'm not saying which is mine!

Then, after what has really been quite an emotionally trying couple of weeks - we were thrilled to go with Miss Lemon's Wool Shop up to the Knitting and Stitching Show at the Ally Pally

So exciting - all the stands and displays and exhibits.  By 3 O'clock I was ready to drop but bursting with ideas.

I made a few well picked purchases, and can't wait to get started on the new projects.  I loved the Namolio stand - just a little stand but packed with linen fabric and threads which I have a particular weakness for:
Sara from  Black Sheep Wools had crocheted a lovely blanket in beautiful wool - she's sending me the pattern tomorrow - which I will start as soon as I finish the knitted blanket I'm working on

and I love Sue Stratford's knitted Christmas things

I loved being up in the Big Smoke, and the view from the Alexandra Palace across London is amazing

But, more importantly, it was great to come back home to the country with lots to look forward to!

Sunday, 4 October 2015

Late Summer

They say the weather's going to deteriorate tomorrow so we have been making the most of this sunny weekend.

Yesterday Karen and Peter showed off their racehorses they keep at the farm - they talked about how they are doing and we listened and ate all the delicious food they provided

 They looked beautiful.

Then I had a look around the garden - it all looked very pretty but too late

I need to look up what to do with this Mind Your Own Business - it has come on quite well since I covered it to keep the chickens off:

and I need to pick the last of my dried flowers.

 Finally, the Michaelmas Daisies looked lovely in the evening light

But as our Climbing Hydrangea shows - Autumn is creeping up on us:

Still, two things to look forward to:  the smocking workshop on Wednesday (two spaces left), and then a talk I'm going to in a couple of weeks' time by Louis de Bernieres at Hungerford Literary Festival - I really loved Captain Corelli's Mandolin so can't wait!