Saturday, 20 December 2014

Christmas Stollen

I have been busy baking recently, as well as trying to steal a little sewing time now and then but the blog has been very quiet. I made a Christmas stollen last week which came out very nice. A few people asked me for the recipe on Instagram so I thought it would be easier to share it here!

Christmas Stollen

75 g sultanas
75 g mixed cut peeel
75 g glace cherries
60 mL dark rum
400 g unbleached white bread flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
50 g sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon yeast
1 egg
140 mL lukewarm milk
50 g melted butter
50 g pinenuts
225 g marzipan

1. Soak the sultanas, mixed peel and cherries in the rum for a few hours.

2. Mix together the flour, salt, sugar, yeast, egg, melted butter and milk to a soft dough. Leave in a warm place to rise until doubled in size.

3. Knock back and knead into the dough the soaked fruits and pinenuts.

4. Roll into a rectangle. Roll the marzipan into a suasage shape and place it in the middle of the rectangle. Fold the dough over (the 2 sides should overlap). Press to seal.

5. Leave to rise in a warm place for about 1 hour.

6. Pre-heat the over to 190oC and bake for 30 minutes. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with icing sugar!


We have also been very busy making lots of Christmas cookies for the teachers for Christmas as well as cute little boxes.


Friday, 5 December 2014

Christmas sewing for swapping

This week, I finished my last swap for the year! I finished my table runner for the #jollyswap on Instagram. My partner had asked for a table runner that I had finished piecing last month but stomach bugs had invaded my house! So the quilting got postponed for a week.

I used a simple stippling for the negative space.

And I used the dark star fabric for the binding.

I really like this design
I used the extra HST blocks I had to make some coasters and also made a little pin-cushion for my partner.

This is my first OPAM for December since I finished it this week,

Linking to Anything Goes Monday.

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Paper piecing

I have done a lot of paper piecing with the 318 Patchwork Patterns sew along. I have made more heart blocks still at 3' for my Christmas ornaments

but I have made my mini for the IG mini swap using paper piecing. I choose the Celestial Star pattern from Diane which is all paper pieced. And after a bad start  (I pieced one wedge and didn't like the look of it),

I changed my colour scheme to make it lighter (less colours) and I really liked how it looks.

12 wedges were needed for one block which I made at 18' square for a mini. 

So 121 pieces later I had a mini, well a 18' square ready for quilting.

I took inspiration from the lovely Liberty cushion I received from Alexandra for the quilting

and used a blue binding to lift up the design

Now I really like this mini and this design, but I sent it to my partner anyway with a few British goodies.

This was one of my OPAM for November. And another one of my Finish Along list.
Linking to Needle and Thread Thursday and Whoop Whoop Friday.


Wednesday, 3 December 2014

November in review

Hoping for Finishes!
1. Liberty of London Swap - finished

2. Fairy Tale swap - finished -  my goal for A lovely year of finishes.

3. Star Plus pattern testing needs quilting and finishing

4. Ornaments for Christmas Swaps - Trim the Tree and IG Ornament swaps- NewFO - finished

Bee Blocks 
1. Stash Bee block (November) 
2. Little Blog Bee block (October and November) - October is finished
3. Block Lotto blocks
4. I love Lucy international block (September) 
5. Flower hexies for the Inchy Hexie Swap (October and November) 
6. Get Your Hexie On - (August, September and November) August finished, September started

1. Midnight in the Oasis - no progress
2. Mod Mod Along blocks: Sunrise Blocks x 6, Little Window blocks x 11 and Sweet Dreams blocks 
3. You've got Mail wall hanging - need 4 more envelopes - no progress
4. Finish Maud's bag - no progress
5. Finish my work bag - my Lazy Bums challenge for November - no progress
6. Make a few blocks for my Green Tea and Sweet Beans quilt - no progress
7. Make more Farmer's Wife blocks - no progress
8. Flowering Snowball quilt-along - no progress
9. Quilt for my Grand-Mum's 90th birthday - no progress
10. Continue working on my Once Upon a Time Sampler - some progress
11. Purple quilt for my Auntie - my Lazy Bums challenge for October - no progress
12. Triangle quilt for my Mum - no progress

New Project
1. Fair Isle Quilt-along -  NewFO - started, just
2. Jolly Swap - NewFO -  Nearly done in November

3. IG Mini Swap - NewFO -  Finished in November

4. Christmas Stocking for Miss A - NewFO - not started
5. Custom Cushions - NewFO - not started
6. 318 blocks sew along - NewFO - most blocks made into ornaments
I also made a little Christmas Sack for another swap!

And I made an additional 7 blocks taking my total to 23 for this month 350-blocks challenge.

And now for December, what will I be able to fit?

Bee Blocks 
1. Stash Bee block (November) 
2. Little Blog Bee block (November and December) 
3. Block Lotto blocks
4. I love Lucy international block (September) 
5. Flower hexies for the Inchy Hexie Swap (October, November and December) 
6. Get Your Hexie On - (September and November) 

1. Midnight in the Oasis 
2. Mod Mod Along blocks: Sunrise Blocks x 6, Little Window blocks x 11 and Sweet Dreams blocks 
3. You've got Mail wall hanging - need 4 more envelopes 
4. Finish Maud's bag 
5. Finish my work bag - my Lazy Bums challenge for November 
6. Make a few blocks for my Green Tea and Sweet Beans quilt 
7. Make more Farmer's Wife blocks 
8. Flowering Snowball quilt-along
9. Quilt for my Grand-Mum's 90th birthday 
10. Continue working on my Once Upon a Time Sampler 
11. Purple quilt for my Auntie - my Lazy Bums challenge for October 
12. Triangle quilt for my Mum 
13. Fair Isle quilt

New Project
1. Doris bag pattern testing - NewFO

2. Cat tote bag - NewFO
3. Mr Snowman - NewFO 
4. Quilty Fun for Christmas - NewFO
5. Christmas Stocking for Miss A - NewFO and my project for A lovely year of finishes
6. Custom Cushions - NewFO 


Monday, 24 November 2014

More Christmas sewing

Yes I still have some swap items to finish, of course I have! So this week-end I finally got started on the table runner I wanted to make for the Jolly Swap on IG. I bought the fabric in October at Alexandra Palace and changed my mind a few times as to the design I was going to use. And finally last week, I found inspiration on Pinterest to make mine. I worked out a pattern on a scrap of paper and got cutting on Friday night!
48 HST and 3 4-patch blocks later I was ready to put the 3 interlocking blocks together into a table runner
I love how this has turned out. I hope my partner does to!
Quilting and binding next!

middle star made of 2.5' squares and HST
outer star made of 4.5' squares and HST
Final size will be 23' x 46 ' (block size: 16')

And that's another 3 blocks for the 350-blocks challenge taking me to 16!!
Linking to Design Wall Monday.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Christmas swapping

I might have over-committed when it comes to my swaps... but anyway I have been busy playing with Christmas fabric in the last week or so. I made some ornaments for the Trim the Tree Swap on Flicker which is always full of cuteness. I made a heart ornament to each of my partner. I used the paper-pieced heart block from the 318 Patchwork Pattern book
and I added a little tree as well.

I made the same ornaments to Hannah for the handmade ornament swaps on Instagram and added a "JOY" ornament all made from the 318 Patchwork Patterns book. I have made a few blocks for the quilt-along but most as been made in ornaments rather than a mini quilt.

I thought it would be better to send them in a Christmas sack so I used once more the trusted pattern from Jeni to make it.

I also made a Christmas Sack for my partner on the Santa Sack swap (who happened to be one of my Trim the Tree partner too)

and sent everything together.

I also made a block for Amelia who was in a swap with other children but didn't receive many back. She'll have a gorgeous quilt.

So I have sent out a few packages but I have also received lots of gorgeous goodies. First some ornaments, a lovely star from Frieda

a reindeer from Francisca

and some more from Louise

As for Rose, she spoiled me with an absolutely fantastic Christmas sack (log cabin on one side and do you recognise this reindeer?, selvage on the other, it couldn't have been more perfect)

filled with some fantastic goodies, including a handmade scarf.

With all these tiny paper piecing blocks for my ornaments, that takes my total of blocks this month to 13. I better get going if I want to meet the target of 30 by the end of the month!

11 ornament, 2 bags that another 13 OPAMs this month! How good is that! And more to cross off my Q4 Finish Along List.

Linking to Whoop Whoop Friday, Anything goes Monday, 318 Patchwork Pattern Sew Along.


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