Edinburgh 2016

 We had such a lovely time last year in Edinburgh we decided to return. The same hotel was booked up but we still managed to stay in the Murrayfield area, namely Murrayfield Hotel. Very comfortable well decorated hotel and the Cmas decorations were exactly my taste. The decor was mostly Paris grey with some distressing of woodwork and the Xmas tree had old fashioned decorations. The staff were very friendly. The only down side were the old windows that were rottenthat allowed in all the traffic noise and anything else that could get through the use holes in the frames. However it was still cosy simply because the heating was blasting. Must cost them a fortune in fuel.

We did not go to the usual places such as the castle and Royal Mile as we had been there and done that many times. We did do some shopping to satisfy J in Princess st which is something I do hate us have to persevere. We walked for miles which would be normal for us but we did use the public transport which is so reasonable at £4 for a day pass. We returned to our favourite little cafe, Jacobs at the hay market and found a few others. We also got to meet up with our nephew Mark who we discovered was leaving in January to go to Australia for a couple of years in a new adventure.
Christmas time is the best time to visit Edinburgh. We enjoyed the Christmas markets for the atmosphere and food although didn’t seem as good as last year or is that because nothing is ever as good second time round. 

 We thoroughly enjoyed a six mile walk along the river to Leith where we paid a visit to the Royal Yacht Britannia.. I have always had an interest in the tOyal family as a child probably. In the same way children can have an interest in Mickey Mouse,something out of reach of our way of life although not quite a fantasy. It was nice to see where they could relax and feel at home but sad they no longer have this as castles and palaces must be so impersonal.

 I often think I was born into the wrong era and would have been more fitted to Edwardian times but then again going by my genealogy I would not have been middle class and life would have been so tough I likely would not have reached this age and wandered beyond our town let alone another country.

The Queens bedroom was much plainer than I expected but expressed the need for normality and very much in keeping with what my grandmother would have chosen, whom I always thought looked very much like the Queen.
 This was my favourite roomwhich was the largest and I felt it was a cosy sitting room where I could almost picture the family relaxing together chatting and playing games.
 Craig millar castle despite being roof less was amazing to explore and you just felt you had drifted back to the time of Mary Queen of Scott’s. It was a definite bus journey away but not too far from the main town in fact just three mi,es from Edinburgh castle or Holyrood  palace as the crow flies.
 It was a dull day but perfect for walking as most of the days were.



Fun and games at NIPG


What a great morning of chat, games, show and tell lots of pressies and treats to eat. This years callenge was a Winters Tale and Gillian Barrs piece ove won first with Valerie’s cushion below coming in at second. All if the entries were special in their own way.
 As always plenty of show and tell.


Very skilled examples of appliqué and embroidery as well as patchwork and quilting.


It was hard to get photos as everyone moved so fast.


 Another of our stack and whacks bearing completion


Joanne’s handsewing was unbelievable. The tiny ones in 4 months!

 My Winters Tale below


My Winters Tale


The NIPG gave a Christmas challenge and the first thing that came into my head was NARNIA. It grew and grew as I started with the winter scene.


I used some embossing glitter on the snow and pastels fir the beam for the light.
 The wardrobe for it yo be in reasonable scale with the scene had to be much bigger an d I avoided most of wood carving by putting narnia down the left side and right side covered by open door. My hubby recognised it as narnia immediately so I was pleased with that.

Lagan Valley Friendship Day

What a wonderful welcome from like minded friends spanning from Dungannon to Portavogie. The work shown was amazing and therefore I have more pictures than words as they speak for themselves.

 This beadwork I adored and felt would look well in a wallhanging with some of Jennie Rayments folding . The photograph of the bag doesn’t do it justice as the fabric all around was so coordinating and my favourite colours. It was also very well put together.
It wasn’t just quilts being shown off as you can see but anything from bags to hats and lots of ideas for small gifts that can use up small scraps.
 There was something 
For everyone and many ones and has heard and swapping of ideas and suggestions.
It was great to see a number of ladies from the NIPG .




Fiddle blankets for Alzheimer’s.



What we did with stack and whack technique.

A few ladies from the N.Ireland Patchwork Guild got together to work in the stack and whack technique which is shown online by Bethany Reynolds. It was a fun day and amazing to see how fabrics with different designs brought out more designs.

This fabric I had bought a few years ago in Joanns in USA. It’s great to be able to use stuff from your stash.
 Stacking but being precise, well almost! I am not a perfectionist but then I do not make to sell. Also if you are using up fabric it may not always be exactly what you need so you have to improvise. 
It is amazing the positions we get into. 
I hadn’t planned what I was going to make 
just make a few motifs then see how my 
fabric stretched.

I love learning new techniques and then seeeing how I can use them so I prefer not to look at other people’s over all designs.
Great to get advice from friends as you progress and even 


Better to learn from their mistakes so you don’t make your own.
A nice idea from Esme so didn’t take too much fabric or time.
So many different patterns. I’m not sure about my patterns although not very clear kaleidoscope still apparent.
 I loved them all and can’t wait to see finished items from the members. I am determined to get more projects finished so although a little rushed pleased with my finished product.
The other fabrics I had from my stash complimented very well and they will match my sewing/ craft room perfectly.
And for the finished quilt… don’t look too close at the points and the tension and stitching isn’t always perfect but I love it just the same.