Saturday, 20 February 2016

The Splendid Sampler - week 1

I'm becoming a bit of a sucker for sampler quilts with 100 or so blocks. First there was Dear Jane, although admittedly I haven't got very far with this one. 

Then there was Sylvia's Bridal Sampler which I'm making in pink, purple and peach batiks. I've done around 35 blocks on this quilt which is a bit of a family affair as my mum, sister and son are all making versions too. 

Next it was Tula Pink's City Sampler which I'm making with bright solids and a stripe from Robert Kaufman in each block. Again I've made around 35 blocks for this quilt. 

These three long term projects are very long term as I'm making them at my own pace. 

And then the other month, along came The Splendid Sampler. This is a mystery sampler quilt. I don't know what the blocks or the finished quilt looks like but I do know there are 100 blocks altogether designed by 80 odd different quilters using a variety of techniques. It is an online quiltalong with a Facebook group. I debated with myself (very briefly) about whether to sign up for it, but hey it was free so there was nothing to lose!

The first block was released on Valentine's Day and of course it was a heart block! Hearts Aflutter was designed by Pat Sloan, one of the ladies who has organised this quiltalong. At the moment I'm making the blocks in two colourways. My first choice fabrics were taupes I've been collecting 

But when it came to appliquéing the heart, I didn't have the right colour thread. So I made a second version in Tula Pink fabrics 

Block 2 was released during the week (they are released on Sunday and Thursday each week)

Wings was designed by Jane Davidson,  the second organiser of the quilt. 

My taupes version

And my Tula version

The more I look at this Tula version, the more I love it!

Week 2 starts tomorrow with block 3. I can't wait!


Saturday, 13 February 2016


This weekend my allotment association is holding it's potato weekend. The association don't bring in many varieties but the prices are very good so I don't mind. One day I'd like to go to a bigger potato day or something like Seedy Sunday in Brighton where I can maybe try some different types. 

This year I have stuck with what I know. First early - Rocket
Second early - Charlotte 
And two main crops Desiree and Cara

I'm trying Cara for the first time as a neighbouring plot holder has said it always does well in our soil. I usually grow Picasso which is similar but last year's crop wasn't the best; lots of scabs 

He has also given me four Swift tubers to try as he was really pleased with his last year

I also bought some Sturon onion sets and Pink Pikant shallots

Not bad for about £7!

It's always a bit chaotic in the allotment shed shop. It's a dark lock up garage but it's packed to the rafters and the prices are ridiculously low compared to shop prices.

We are lucky to have it 

I put the tubers in egg boxes straight away so they could start chitting. Didn't take long for one of the cats to guard them for me....