Sunday, 25 May 2014

Pie Crust Cushions from Jo Colwill's Book 'Cushions & Quilts'

I have been itching to use some lovely linen fabric in my stash, but just had to decide on the right project.  As I only had a fat quarter each of the floral and pink hare fabric, I knew it had to be a cushion.

Last November I had the delight of being back at Cowslip Workshops in Launceston, Cornwall for their annual Xmas Bonanza Weekend. One of the many options to try out was a Pie Crust Cushion, designed by owner Jo. Using some lovely red heart and flower fabric from the shop along with some I already had, I created a fabulous applique heart cushion. But more of that later.

This gave me the idea for my Hare cushion.  Using the larger brown hare fabric piece, I then cut out the pink hare fabric to create a wide border.

The final size came to 11 inches square.  I cut out the back fabric and then added a piece of wadding and plain fabric to each to create a quilt sandwich.  This helps bulk out the cushion and makes the Pie Crust effect when you hand stitch later.

A side gusset has to be added to the top panel first and then the bottom panel leaving enough space to get your cushion pad in.  Stuff the cover with the pad and hand sew the open seam with a slip stitch.

The Pie Crust effect is created by hand sewing up and down on the top and bottom of the cushion, using a cotton Perle thread.  I used Anchor Cotton Perle No 5 in Colour 968 Pink.

Here's the original Heart cushion I made, which gave me the idea for the Hare cushion.

This was using a 12 inch square, but both were stuffed with a 14 inch cushion pad for bulk.

And as its Chelsea Flower Show this week, I thought a garden shot might show them off nicely!

Happy Sewing!

Monday, 19 May 2014

Betula Socks and a Mighty Fine Cake!

I confess, I have had a bit of a slow spell with the knitting recently, but am chuffed to have finished my Betula Socks by the talented Rachel Coopey.  I only started them in January.........  probably the longest time I have had a pair of socks on the needles.  Still I can only speed up.  I was knitting them as part of the UK Sock Knitters Flora Themed Knit-a-long on Ravelry.  As I had actually compiled the list of plant suggestions, I thought I better crack on and finish a pair within the year!

An interesting design that included increases and decreases to create the lovely bobbled effect.  They are a present for a lady with quite large feet.  I just have to decide if she gets them for Xmas or her birthday!

Talking of birthdays, I just had to share a picture of the cake my amazing Mum made me for my recent birthday.  Its a recipe by Frances Quinn, who won last years Great British Bake Off. 

A 5 tier sponge cake with lashings of mascarpone and lemon curd filling and loads of fresh fruit no less.  Delish!!!  The recipe was in this months Good Food Magazine.

It makes my attempt at an Orange Syrup Cake look quite measly.  From Mary Berry's Baking Bible, it was a lovely alternative to a Lemon Drizzle Cake and made its way off to the Cake Stall at a local open garden.

Now I just need to wind my lovely skein of yarn for my next pair of socks.  I think these will be for me!

Happy Knitting / Baking!