French Cancan

This is a beautiful pattern from Mademoiselle C. It used only two skeins of Orange Flower Merino Silk DK in Meteorite.


The edging makes it look difficult, but actually its a very simple repetitive cable pattern which gives an impressive result. I must admit that 50 repeats of the edging pattern did get a bit boring at times, so this took me a while to finish in between other projects.


I blocked it with blocking wires which really helped make the picot edging  even.


Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Winners

Thank you so much to everyone who entered my giveaway! I really enjoyed reading the comments and finding out what you were all making. I was especially inspired by those who said they are going to take advantage of the good weather and spend time outdoors, I definitely plan to do that this summer (as well as some sewing!).

The winner of the Love Quilting and Patchwork magazine is:


…Heather! I hope you will enjoy your magazine!

The winner of the Wonderland charm pack is:



I will be contacting both the winners today and will post out your goodies this week.

Happy Street KAL

Happy Street KAL by azmiat
Happy Street KAL, a photo by azmiat on Flickr.

This is my yarn for the KAL over at The Uncommon Thread Ravelry board. The pattern is going to be Happy Street by Veera Vallimaki.

The yarns from left to right: Lioness Arts Exquisite fingering in Thoughts, The Uncommon Thread Heavenly fingering in Grit and Posh fingering in Envy.

I’m slightly overextending myself this month as I’m also taking part in Mad May – a month of Madelinetosh knitting with prizes along the way. I don’t expect to win anything but I do find it motivates me if I’m knitting with others. The weather is too nice to stay indoors and sew at the moment, so I can sit outside with my knitting while its sunny!

Village Haberdashery Quilt Class Giveaway


Annie from the Village Haberdashery is hosting an amazing giveaway as part of the Sew Mama Sew Giveaway day!

One lucky winner will get to attend the Modern Quilting Sampler class run by Katy Jones from the popular I’m a Ginger Monkey blog. This class is worth £125 and you will learn a range of essential skills such as accurate piecing and assembling your own stunning modern quilt. This prize is open to UK residents only and you must be able to attend the class (on 18th and 25th May).



To enter, visit the London Modern Quilt Guild blog and leave a comment on the giveaway page. You can also sign up to the Village Haberdashery newsletter for a bonus entry. The competition closes at 6pm on May 10th.

Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day!


I have a couple of great items to give away as part of the Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day 2013!

ImageMy first item is the very popular (and sold out) Love Patchwork & Quilting magazine. This is the Spring 2013 edition and has the stunning Marcelle Medallion quilt pattern from Liberty Love. There is currently a quilt along for this pattern so you can join in with other bloggers!


You will receive a brand new unopened copy of the magazine which includes a free Nicki Trench mini book with 60 quilting tips (the photos shown are from my own copy). I also love this pattern:Image


There are several other quilting and patchwork projects in the magazine too, as well as features on new fabrics and techniques. 

I also have a gorgeous Wonderland by Momo Charm pack to give away. This is a lovely whimsical collection which was hugely popular before it sold out! 


To enter, simply leave a comment – it can be about anything but I would love to know what projects you have planned for the spring! Also feedback on the blog and what I could do to improve it is always welcome. 

If you follow my blog using Bloglovin, you get a bonus entry! Just let me know you have followed my blog in a separate comment to qualify. 

This competition closes on May 10th and I will get in touch with you by May 12th – don’t forget to leave your email address or make sure I can find it! International entries welcome. 

Live Below the Line


Radish thinnings from the garden to add to our dinner!


I’m currently doing a 5 day challenge as part of Live Below the Line (sponsor me here!) – I am only allowed to eat £1 worth of food per day. As I’m doing it together with my husband, we pooled our £10 and bought the following: 

  • Pasta 39p
  • Oil 40p (1/3 bottle) 
  • Can of white beans 33p
  • Can of tinned tomatoes 33p
  • Plain yoghurt 45p 
  • Lentils 95p for 500g
  • Potatoes 80p for 1kg 
  • Lemon 29p 
  • Onions 50p
  • Garlic 16p
  • Sugar 20p 
  • Milk 55p 
  • Teabags 27p 
  • Fresh Turkish bread 70p
  • Pitta bread 39p
  • Eggs £1 for 6
  • Mayonnaise 45p
  • Rice 40p 
  • Baked beans 40p 
  • Bananas 3 for 28p 
  • Porridge 20p (1/3 pack) 
  • Salt/spices from cupboard 50p 

In total so far, that adds up to £9.35. 


I wanted to prove that we could eat well even on this small amount of food, but we have found it difficult so far. I’ve learned a lot about our shopping and eating habits. I thought we’d be able to afford some fresh fruit and vegetables with our budget, as well as packets of dried beans/lentils etc. I’ve realised how expensive fresh food is relative to tinned/dried foods, with fruit in particular being a bit of a luxury on such a tight budget.The rules stated that you could buy whole packets of things only, however this was impossible as oil and porridge could not be bought in smaller quantities. On a practical point, it would be more realistic to buy large quantities of cheap staples to be eaten over a long period of time rather than only 5 days’ worth. 

I also realised that I barely notice the budget ranges in the supermarket usually, and had no idea it was possible to buy decent(ish) tea for only 27p for 80 teabags! Basics pasta and rice from Sainsburys are also perfectly edible, although the rice is much more gloopy than the basmati rice we usually eat. We also tend to buy too much each week and could easily cut back, saving some money and wasting less food in the process. I nearly burnt a pot of dhal and it would have been a disaster, whereas usually I’ll just make some more without worrying about it. 

So far, we’ve had Turkish lentil soup with the bread, potato curry (with a few baby radish leaves from the garden) dhal and rice, egg omelette and my favourite dish, which is pasta with yoghurt and chilli oil. Our main meals have been tasty, but we have had to ration ourselves as we only had six eggs in total and a limited amount of lentils. I’m partial to a biscuit with my tea which was not allowed and I haven’t eaten anything sweet (except for porridge) since the start of the challenge, which is hard when you have a freezer stocked with ice cream in this weather! I was contemplating making a creme caramel with an egg and the last of our milk but I’m not sure if this will be the wisest use of our resources. 

Although we’re not too hungry (except at breakfast time – I can’t stomach the porridge so have been skipping it) it does take the joy out of shopping for food and eating when you can only eat the basics. I have noticed feeling much more tired than usual which is probably due to cutting all the snacks out. It’s still been very worthwhile though, I have definitely thought a lot about how we spend money in the past few days.