Welcome to the blog for Embroidered Originals, where I'll keep you up-to-date with all the goings on at our little cottage industry. You can also view our website and shop online at embroideredoriginals.co.uk Marion x

Sunday, 27 February 2011

The Patchwork and Quilting Show

Every year at this time, Barbara and I head off to Ingliston in Edinburgh for the Patchwork and Quilting Show.
It's a rare day out for me, justified by the fact that I'm there to buy fabrics for the business. As it's also something I really enjoy doing, it's definitely combining business with pleasure.
Of course, I can buy ( and do, frequently) plenty of fabric on the internet. But it's good to see it in reality too.
This time I had a shopping list and at the top were plaids and checks, although I didn't hold out much hope of finding any. But I was lucky and picked up this little lot.
And also a good selection of plains and mini prints.

And this is what approx £130 worth of fabric looks like! Still it is going to go far, once it's cut up into thousands and thousands of shapes like these
And then turned into cards like these

But before I stash all my lovely new fabrics away, I think I'll have to give the drawers a bit of a tidy up!

Oh and we saw some beautiful quilts too. After all that was the main thing about the Show, but of course I didn't have my camera with me, so I can't show you any.
We were in agreement though that the standard of exhibits was a good bit higher than last year. I'm not a quilter, but Barbara is ( yes I can say that now, B, since you do have a few actually finished ones now, don't you!!)
I can admire them though, and wonder at the time it must take to produce such large yet intricately detailed examples.
We had a good day out and came home exhausted but happy with our purchases. Well almost - Barbara being the queen of bargain spotting didn't quite use up all the money in her purse!

Saturday, 26 February 2011

It's Spring!....Isn't It?

The temperature according to our car today was 15 degrees. The sun shone ( mostly) and we seemed to waken from our winter hibernation.
For one thing the camera was actually taken out of its case.
And captured the sun shining on a vase of daffodils.
Then ventured outside to find Bob washing windows, in his usual precarious fashion.
This should be the last time he has to do that as we'll be having brand new windows soon, which will allow me to wash them from the inside.
I walked round the poor sad garden and this is what I found.

Completely neglected pots of last year's flowers,

And what looks like a muddy puddle, but is in fact the garden pond. It usually looks very colourful with irises and waterlilies, but just at the moment it's clogged with leaves and pondweed and looking much neglected.
HOWEVER.... I spent three hours and six bin bags this afternoon in the warm sunshine, getting to grips with the problem.
There's nothing much to show for it yet, but soon the new shoots will appear.
And lastly the field is back to its usual empty self, after last week's farm sale ( see previous post). The portaloo wasn't removed until Tuesday! The field is ready for the ploughing to begin, I hope, then the seed sowing, and we can look forward to another year of gently swaying wheat.
Roll on Spring.

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

If You Like Attention to Detail...You'll like this.

Thought I'd share this video clip with you. The person being interviewed is one of my old good friends from Art College days. We sat next to each other painting up designs and planning our futures. I think he managed to stick to his plans better than I did!
Raymond and I kept in touch for a few years after college, but then we lost touch until recently when he found this blog and contacted me again.
In the intervening years he has become a very successful textile designer/ lecturer and design consultant working for Liberty, Viyella and Ehrmann tapestries to name but a few.
He has a major exhibition running in London at the moment and here he is being interviewed about his work.
See what I mean about attention to detail?

Saturday, 19 February 2011

The Peace and Quiet of the Countryside

The weather has been pretty awful the past couple of days - constant rain, heavy skies and no light. Cold too, brrr.
But something unusual has been happening outside our kitchen door.
On Thursday there seemed to be a lot of activity in the field. It's not our field, but we think of it as ours, or at least the view of it from the kitchen door. I love the wide open space and the changing colours. It is usually planted with wheat or barley and in the early summer looks like this -
Then of course as the crop grows and ripens it turns increasingly gold, until it is harvested in the Autumn.
Then the field lies fallow over the winter until the whole cycle starts again. I love it.
So this activity was perhaps the start of work to prepare the field? That was soon proved wrong, as more and more diverse pieces of farm machinery appeared dotted all round the field.
The penny dropped - it was going to be a farm auction.
So this is what we saw when we opened the blinds this morning....
A damp dismal and soggy field full of farm machinery and hundreds of farmers come to buy.

The peace of the countryside was shattered by an auctioneer standing on the back of a truck shouting out the bids while the people were all gradually sinking up to the top of their wellies in the mud.
The normally quiet farm road was a constant stream of traffic.
But what was the most surprising view?

THIS was right outside our kitchen door! Do you recognise what it is? That's right - a green portaloo! Of all the places in the field to put it!!
There was a steady stream of visitors to it all day.
As dusk fell the farmers had all jumped back into their 4 x 4s and headed home. Some pieces of machinery are still in the field, either unsold or waiting to be collected.
Hopefully all will be back to normal tomorrow, and we can look forward to the ploughing, sowing and growing season again. It can't come soon enough for me.
And I hope they don't forget about the portaloo, although we are intending to have a new bathroom put in soon, so it might come in handy.
By the way, I know it's been a while between posts. But I've been busy making rather a lot of Valentine cards for people all over the world. And now I'm on to Mother's Day. I don't remember being this busy at the start of the year before, so I wonder how the rest of the year will pan out?


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