Friday, April 30, 2010

My first quilt.

I have wanted to make a quilt for either our bed or as a throw for the sofa for some time. Here is the on going story of my first quilt, a quilt-as-you-go quilt. It's going to be a slow process as I don't really know what I am doing. I'm following instructions from a marvellous lady from New Zealand who is guiding me throw the process.

My batting, the stuff that makes the quilt padded. I've chosen a 100% cotton wadding that was bought by the metre from my local fabric shop. In this photo I have already cut it into 12in x 12in squares ready to start. I also chose a 100% cotton backing fabric in plain cream. Actually an Egyptian cotton flat bedsheet from Asda. (local supermarket) I cut this to match the batting.

I took one batting and one backing fabric, wrong sides together baste diagonally and then zig zag around the edges. This is taking the time as I have already bent two needles.

The colour way for the quilt is greens with reds and creams. I have had a great deal of help from the lady that runs the the local quilting shop, in choosing shades of greens and creams. This is a new shop and full of scrummy fabrics and sewing notions. Classes and sewing groups are also going to be held in the adjoining building but are a little expensive for me.

Now I have to cut up all that lovely fabric. It has taken me a while to pluck up courage to actually put blade to cloth. I am a big silly aren't I? To make this an easier task I have bought a long ruler thingy and have so far found it very useful. I already had the cutting board, as you can see from all the ink and paint stains on it. The rotary cut I bought years ago and totally forgot I had. It's so easy to use, I'd cut the wadding and backing in minutes.

No stitching of the fabric as yet but soon, very soon.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Sweetcorn, beans and other

Sweetcorn, loads of it. Good job we all love it in all it's guises. I sowed 110 seeds and 109 have germinated. These were sown at home as the naughty little rodents at the allotment had eaten my first sowing. I've now put them out in my little greenhouse at home to harden off and in a few weeks they can go to the lottie.

Various beans and a few courgettes out in the greenhouse.

Again all the butternut squash germinated, where will I put them all? Never can bear to throw a plant away. Perhaps that is why last year I ended up with half a ton of various squash and pumpkin.

Trays of brassicas I potted on earlier in the week. Calabrese, PSB, Savoy cabbage and one or two hard white, for the coleslaw.

These were a few extra strawberry runners I didn't know what to do with. I potted them up and stashed them in the tunnel. Flowering already, I do hope we get a decent crop as I'd love to make jam from my own fruit.

First early potatoes planted about a month ago are already showing their heads above ground. I believe these are call Coleen. I also have a few rows of Maris Bard and a salad potato, Charlotte.

and last but not least these are my new friends, Rosemary and Thyme the piggie wigs. Our allotments are part of a small farm and these two have invaded the plot fields. Love a good scratch and a carrot or two.

Monday, April 26, 2010

The poly tunnel is up and running at last. The wet and windy weather disappeared a couple of weeks ago and the 'boys' got to work. I didn't interfere as, apparently, this was man's work. There was a bit of head scratching and a few choice words but all in all it was an alright job.

Here we are all finished and I love it. Doesn't take much to make me happy. There is still lots of work to be done inside but I've started on that. The advantage is I can garden in the wet now and grow a lot more tender fruit and veg, with an extended growing season.

Quite some digging needed here but I've already started to enrich the soil with well rotted manure and some of my own compost. I have founds some old scaffold boards that will make good boarder edges. Just got to fix them up.

Here is my little potting area, I was just sowing a few yard long beans and a few sunflowers to attract the bees.

I have already started to fill it up. Newly sown PSB, calabrase, and summer cabbage at the back. A little yellow tomato next, not sure of it's name. The a couple of trays of leeks and a tray of runner beans I was gifted by one of the other plot holders. In the foreground are heritage tomatoes I received as a free gift on an Australian gardening mag.

There has been a lot more happening since I took these photos, in the week. More beans and sweetcorn have been sown and eaten by the mice. I've re-sowed at home and those seeds are up and growing. More pictures tomorrow.