Sunday, August 28, 2011

41 weeks + 4 days

41 + 4

For any of you sitting there thinking "there MUST be baby news from Scotland soon" I thought I'd better check in to let you know.... we are still waiting!

In the middle of a typically damp and cold August bank holiday weekend we haven't had too much to do other than relax and eat good food, so really is it any wonder that the baby is enjoying it far too much to make a move?

Over the last week or so I have been collecting some good stories about poorly thought through baby names. Take Mr & Mrs Hill the parents who named their child "Reef" and were happy with it for many years until they heard his full name called across a room and exchanged horrified looks as they realised they had inadvertently named their child "Refill."

Then there was the nurse who was due to have at baby near Christmas and had settled on the name "Holly" until she shared her decision with her friends who pointed out it made a rather unfortunate pairing with her surname "Cow".

And finally the school teacher who at a parent's evening was asked how "Gooey" was doing in class. Baffled, she racked her brain for a child of that name who she taught, before finally realising the parents had been suffering under the illusion that this was the correct pronunciation for a name the rest of us know as "Guy!"

It's quite a dangerous business this baby naming thing!

But anyway, I shan't be boring you with anecdotes too much longer. I'm going into hospital to be induced tomorrow night, so we should have baby news by midweek... or failing that quilts. Yes, maybe it will just be more quilts!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

WIP Wednesday (24th August)

Sherbet Pips crib quilt 3

First off, I'm still here, and still pregnant... 41 weeks along! I've been walking a couple of miles a day, eating pineapple in every form, taking raspberry leaf tablets, bouncing on an exercise ball, and I even ate curry three nights running, and still this baby is going nowhere... Even after I fell down the stairs yesterday (not a scheduled part of the labour inducing plan!)

So tomorrow morning I'll be trying some reflexology to coax things along and on Monday I'm being admitted for an induction. I was so certain there would be some news by now that I even took my sewing machine in for a very long overdue service on Saturday, what a fatal mistake that was, I'm going stir crazy without it!

Still I did manage to finish a couple of things before I handed it over. Firstly the Sherbet Pips crib quilt, which is without a doubt my favourite quilt to date.

Sherbet Pips crib quilt front

The style of quilting is more accidental than planned. For the first time I added some detail to the back of the quilt, but it didn't precisely match with the front, so I needed a style of quilting that wouldn't give that away... Accidental, but I love it!

Sherbet pips crib quilt reverse

For those curious about the pre-washing of the batting/wadding, it definitely seems to have made the end result less baggy/crinkly, although whether this is also partly a result of the intensive quilting I'm not sure, I will keep experimenting.

I also tried a non-quilting project, some newborn pants from a free pattern by Made By Rae. This pair were a bit of an experiment with leftover fabric, which is why the fabric doesn't match precisely (apologies to perfectionists!) they are also shown without the elastic added to the waist, which I was waiting for in the post.

I'll definitely be making more once I know how girlie or boyish I can go with my fabric choices. They are INCREDIBLY simple to make, so simple that even a sewer like me who likes to stick to nice two dimensional quilts couldn't muck them up!

Funky trews

Hope you've also had a productive week, here's hoping they'll be baby news to share by next Wednesday!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

WIP Wednesday (17th August)

Hello from Sunny Scotland and a Happy Due Day to me!

No sign of the baby arriving any time soon, so some quilting progress to report this week. Firstly the pink crib quilt which was an embryonic idea this time last week, is now finished.

Ruth's quilt 1

All of the squares were precut and already in my stash so it came together very quickly. I'm particularly pleased with the way the applique name came out. It'll be going in the post to its new owner today...

Ruth's quilt 2

Gifted quilts out of the way, I had some time to return to quilts I'm making for our baby and in particular the Sherbet Pips snowball crib quilt.

I've tried a couple of new things with this quilt. Firstly it has a feature panel on the back, making it my first double sided quilt and secondly I have experimented with pre-washing the batting/wadding to lose the shrinkage before quilting. I'm not 100% sold on the crinkly look for all quilts, so it will be interesting to see what the difference in the finished result is.

Sherbet Pips snowball in progress 2

This one should be completed by the end of today, just some trimming/straightening up to do and the binding to add! I can't wait to get that polka dot fabric sewn on!

Please come back next week to see the result one way or another... You never know, maybe they'll be a baby sleeping under it... And in the meantime click on the logo below to see the other blogs taking part in WIP Wednesday...

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

WIP Wednesday (August 10th)

I've had a two week break from WIP Wednesday whilst we took time to see some of Scotland's wonderful west coast. If you normally only join me for quilting posts, do have a quick look here and here to get a taster of the stunning scenery. I've lived in the UK for most of my life and really had no clue how beautiful it was.

On the quilting front, after a productive day yesterday, I have completed the snowball baby quilt that I was waiting for a name for.  Our neighbour's son Oscar was born on 27th July, whilst we were still on holiday.

If I were to do this one again, I'd do some additional quilting in the middle of the snowballs to keep them from being quite so puffy... but I'm a perfectionist!

I also cracked on with my Sherbet Pips crib quilt, I went for a snowball design again, partly because I've never actually kept a snowball that I've made! It took longer than usual to lay out the design because I wasn't completely enamoured with some of the fabrics in the charm pack - and looking at other completed Sherbet Pips quilts on Flickr it seems most people have had a similar problem and rejected the same designs.... I'm interested to know if anyone else has made anything with Sherbet Pips and if so what you thought?

Sherbet Pips snowball in progress

And lastly I have a third baby quilt to tackle this week! It's for a baby girl born a few days ago. I'm trying only to use stash fabrics for quilts at the moment and to keep the projects simple, so I've dug out this very girly collection...

Pink fabrics

No idea what I'm doing with them yet! A third snowball would be easy, but not very inspiring to make.... So maybe a half square triangle quilt?

And finally that other significant work in progress... Today I am exactly one week from my due date! So next week could mean three birthdays in this family! Mine on Monday, my husband's on Thursday and perhaps the baby will join us midweek? If not I'll be back again next Wednesday with a WIP update. Until then have a good week!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Friday, August 5, 2011

Bump on the beach

Hopeman collage

There are a lot of things we've been planning to do before the baby is born, and with 12 days till the due date, some of them are slowly slipping out of our grasp. 

One of the things I thought we might have missed the boat with was some bump photography. The difficulty is when it's your bump, and you are the one who normally takes the photos, it's hard to find someone to hold the camera who also understands what you want.

Luckily my old work colleague Jenny (it's her bottom left) came to visit, and discussing it by chance last night, it became clear she totally understood what photos I was aiming for. Not that that should be a surprise. Jenny has spent 4 years in two different countries working with me on all sorts of creative projects (she's very tolerant!) so she knows how my mind works.

These photos were taken at Hopeman beach again, she even sweet talked my husband into posing, which is something I have far less luck with! You can see a few more of the images on Flickr

Thank you again Jenny!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

West Coast Wonders (part 2)

Calgary beach, Isle of Mull
Ardvasar, Isle Of Skye
Eilean Donan Castle, west coast of Scotland
Loch Torridon
Eigg & Rhum
Stonefield, Isle Of Skye
Calgary Bay, Isle Of Mull
View from Stonefield beach, Isle Of Skye

A final batch of eye candy for you from the west coast of Scotland. I think you will be incredibly relieved to know that despite the fact the sun shone and the views were stunning, the trip was not always perfect!

Our first four nights were spent at a self-catering cottage on a remote 2000 acre Highland estate, only when we arrived late afternoon did we discover towels were not included with the accommodation and we were a two hour round trip (in the direction we had just come from) from the nearest supermarket. So we swallowed hard and realised we had to go ahead with our only option - use the towels we had brought for the dogs!!

Fortunately they were freshly washed and tumble dried (pampered pooches in our house) but it still felt slightly less than hygenic!

I also managed to soak my only pair of shoes when I stood in a boggy hole on the Isle Of Skye whilst taking a photo and then had to spend half the next day walking around wearing wellies whilst I tried to buy another pair of shoes.

And partly because we packed for typical cooler, damper Scottish weather, and partly because I have totally failed to find any summer maternity shorts that stay up, I spent the majority of the holiday sweltering in a pair of jeans and fantasising about floaty summer skirts!

I'd do it all again in a heart beat though, there is such a lot to see (and photograph) some wonderful fresh seafood and miles of wilderness free from tourists (even in August) If you are planning a trip, you can see details of where the photos were taken by clicking through to Flickr, but here's a brief outline...

Calgary bay, Isle Of Mull
Ardvasar, Isle Of Skye (this is where I stood in a boggy hole!)
Eilean Donan Castle
Crofter's Cottage, Loch Torridon
Isles of Eigg & Rhum seen from the Skye ferry
Stonefield, Isle Of Skye
Silver sands of Morar
Jim walking the dogs at Calgary Bay
View from the Glenuig Inn, Glenuig
Stonefield, Isle Of Skye

And for anyone trying to improve their photography (I count myself in this bracket too!) I'm going to be posting a review of a great little ebook for DSLR users tomorrow, so pop back to find out more...
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