A slight obsession with books

Crafts, cats and books


Rosie’s quilt #3

This is coming on slowly as I’m only getting time for it on some of my days off. I have managed to piece together the blocks though and now have a quilt top ready for making into a sandwich.

I struggled for ages with how to arrange the blocks. I wanted random, but I’m not very good at random. I like logic and order so kept finding myself making sure there weren’t any blocks with the same colours touching.

Eventually I just put the blocks into a pile and laid them out in rows as I picked them up and made myself leave it at that, although I did make sure to turn them so that as few seams lined up as possible. Less chance of them not matching that way 😉

I think it came out quite nicely.

Rosie's quilt - 06It’s sitting on the batting in the photo and is now all rolled up on top of some cupboards where the cats can’t reach it. Hopefully I’ll find time to sort out some backing for it soon and get it basted.



Rosie’s quilt #2

Progress! It isn’t finished yet, but it’s coming on.

I got the original four blocks made up but it definitely wasn’t going to be large enough for what I wanted. Rosie loves sleeping on the chair next to the bed and was very impressed when I borrowed one of the other small quilts to put on it. I’m thinking that a larger quilt plus a cushion would be perfect for her.

These are the four blocks that I did to start with.

Rosie's quilt-02I just needed to find more fabric for eight more blocks. I had more than enough of the patterned squares from the charm packs so that wasn’t a problem. I had a bit more of the blue fabric and enough of a matching brown fabric, but that left me needing something for the centres. I didn’t have any more of the silver fabric so I took four pink/lilac squares from the grunge charm packs and sent for a pale golden-brown for the other four squares.

Rosie's quilt - 05Yesterday I found the time to sew up the eight blocks and now have this lovely pile.

Rosie's quilt - 03 Rosie's quilt -04Next step is to cut them into four and then play around with them to see how I want to arrange them. I’ve got some long shifts coming up this week so it may be a while before I can get back to this but I’m happy with how much I got done this weekend, considering that most of today has been spent in front of the TV with three Wimbledon matches and the British Grand Prix.




Rosie’s quilt

I’ve made small quilts for both Sammie and Frodo so I want to make one for Rosie too. The plan was to have it ready for when we brought her home, but as I was having problems cutting the fabric, due to the dodgy shoulder, I waited until I’d bought the new ruler thingy from the craft show.

I’ve given the ruler a try and it is definitely easier to cut. Less pressure required and it doesn’t move at all. So, now that cutting is going to be easier, and more accurate, I shall crack on and get little Rosie’s quilt made before she outgrows it.

I looked at lots of different blocks and rummaged though my fabrics, but I’ve decided to do yet another Disappearing nine patch, using some pretty squares from a couple of small charm packs that I got at a show a couple of years ago. I added two fat quarters of a plainer fabric in a nice blue.

Rosie's quilt-01I’ve already cut the squares needed from the fat quarters and have made a good start on sewing the blocks. I feel that it isn’t going to be large enough though as I’d like it to drape over the chair that she prefers to sleep on upstairs. I don’t have any more of the silver squares that I’ve used for the centres so I think I’ll use some of the squares from the new Moda grunge charm packs with some brown FQs that match the blue ones. I need one more colour for the centres so I’ve sent for a couple of fat quarters plus some rather pretty fabric for the backing.

Hopefully I’ll have some more progress to report on this one soon as Rosie needs something nice to snuggle onto.



A mat for the cats

As the cat tree is next to some of the bookcases, the cats use it as stepping stone to get even higher. We were pretty sure they’d be up there even before we got them, so we cat-proofed it. The bookcases run along one wall and round the corner, leaving a gap in the corner itself. We were worried that the cats could fall down there, either by accident or design, and as the bookcases are very securely fastened to the wall, it’d take some time to get them out again.

So, Stephen fastened a piece of board to the top of the bookcases, and covering that open corner. The cats enjoy going up there and napping, but I didn’t think it looked very comfy.

Luckily, I had a plan for that.

BookcaseMat-04The board is fastened down at the edge of the bookcase, leaving it loose along its length. It’s perfectly adequate to stop it from moving and it means that I could slide something underneath it.

I made the mat using the quilt as you go technique. I rather like that as it’s so quick and easy. Once made, I fastened elastic to the sides in three places to make straps that would slide under that board and hold it firmly in place. If it wasn’t fastened, the cats would just keep throwing it on the floor.

BookcaseMat-03Not the neatest sewing of the elastic, but it does the job.

It looks ok, and more importantly it gives a softer surface for the cats to nap on.

BookcaseMat-02I tempted Frodo up there once I’d fitted it and he seemed to approve. Since then, both cats have taken to it nicely. They do seem to like anything that I make for them 🙂



Frodo’s quilt – finished

Finally finished it just over a week ago. It’s been sitting on my desk for ages, half quilted and needing binding. I’ve been very busy with job search activities recently though, as well as the garden, and have had two very inquisitive cats to contend with every time I went near the sewing machine. Also they’d taken to napping on the partly finished quilt, while it was on the desk.

Once I’d made time to get it done, it didn’t take as long as I’d thought so here it is, all quilted, bound and even washed. (to remove the numerous cat hairs that it had already accumulated.)

Frodo'sQuilt-05And a close-up to hopefully show off the quilting a bit better.

Frodo'sQuilt-08Once I’d taken a few photos outside, to take advantage of it not actually raining, I tried some inside as I wanted to get a shot of the back, which shows the quilting off a bit better. Sammie was determined to take a nap on it though so I only managed a couple of slightly dark photos.

One of Sammie

Frodo'sQuilt-06And one of the back.

Frodo'sQuilt-07I’m really pleased with the quilting. I stitched about a quarter-inch either side of all the seams, and I think it turned out quite well. The binding leaves something to be desired, but it’s better than the last time, so there’s improvement. Can’t ask much more than that, and these cat quilts are great for practising on.

There hasn’t been any crafting of any description since last Sunday. I had a bit of a mishap. I was preparing some veggies and decided to use my new mandoline. Bad idea. On the first attempt, the cucumber flew one way and my finger was dragged over the very sharp blade, removing a decent slice from it. It would be the index finger on my dominant hand too, wouldn’t it. I’ve not been able to stitch, sew, crochet, garden and I can’t even type properly. Gah! Still, my Fitbit stats are great this week as I’ve been going for walks instead. Hopefully it’ll heal soon so I can get on with all the fun stuff.



Frodo’s cushion

This was probably the easiest cushion that I’ve made yet. I’ve made it specially to fit inside the cat carrier as Frodo will be travelling home all the way from Cannock and it’s a long journey for a little cat. I felt he needed something soft and squishy to cuddle up on for the journey.

I didn’t have much time to get this done so I went for the quick and easy method and did quilt-as-you-go. I used scraps too, so I’m feeling quite virtuous. I cut the batting and some muslin just a bit bigger than I’d need for the inside of the carrier. Then I picked out a couple of small scraps and stitched them to the centre, and added the rest of the fabric going round and round so it’s a bit like a log cabin effect. Once all the batting was covered, I cut a couple of pieces of fabric for the envelope-style back, hemmed the edges and sewed it all together.


I had to make a cushion inner as it’s an odd size but that didn’t take long. I just sewed two pieces of fabric together, leaving a gap to pull through. Then I topstitched the opening closed after filling it with washable stuffing.

It fits beautifully and I didn’t stuff it too tightly so it’s quite soft.


I’m rather pleased with it. Hope Frodo likes it 🙂


Frodo’s Quilt – blocks

I’ve managed to get a bit done to Frodo’s quilt, but I haven’t got very far as I’ve been so busy in the garden.

First I made six nine-patch blocks

Frodo'sQuilt-04I tried to place the squares randomly but I just couldn’t do it. I did manage to stop myself from putting them all the same way up, so there is some randomness there. Also one block has two of the squares in the wrong place, but I don’t think it’ll show once it’s finished.

Once I’d finished the blocks, I then cut them all apart again. (as you do) When I did a disappearing nine patch before, I cut the block into quarters and rotated them. I’ve done this one differently. I found a few examples of this online and thought it looked good.

Frodo'sQuilt-03You cut two blocks and swap their centres. It’s going to look very busy and colourful as I’m not using any solids but I think Frodo will like it.

I’ve got the blocks sewn back together now, and I just need to sew them together and finish it off.

I’m hoping to get a cushion made for the cat carrier before we go to collect Frodo so I’m going to try to do that next and finish the quilt later. Not too much later though. I’d like Frodo to have his quilt while he’s still a kitten 😉


Pretty fabric

I’m going to make another small quilt, this time for Frodo. I think he deserves his own quilt for when he arrives. I’m going to use one of the fat quarter bundles that I got from Hobbycraft when they were on offer.

Frodo'sQuilt-01It’s very pretty and I’m sure Frodo won’t mind a bit of pink in his quilt. These are the six fabrics in the bundle.

Frodo'sQuilt-02I’m cutting it into 5″ squares and I think I’ll probably do a nine-patch or a variation of that. Hopefully I can get it done in time as we should be bringing Frodo home in a couple of weeks.


Snowball quilt – Ta da!

I’ve finally got around to finishing this. The delay was partly the craft room clean-up and partly not having any suitable fabric for the backing. I kept looking online but couldn’t find anything that I liked enough. I found a nice spotty fabric when I was in Hobbycraft last week, and although it was more than I really wanted to pay, I did like it so I splurged.

This quilt is for Sammie and will go on one of the sofas for her to lie on. She loves her other quilt, which is folded up on one of my craft room chairs for her. I may need to make her a few more as they’re a nice size to practise with and she doesn’t mind if the blocks aren’t lined up very well 😉

She claimed it before it was even finished. Have you ever tried to sew binding on when there’s a cat lying on the part that isn’t in the machine? She also ran off with the binding while I was still making it.

She even helped me to photograph it. I made the mistake of lying it on the bed and she must have thought I was making a nice cosy play area for her.

Snowball08I think she likes that some of the blocks match one of her favourite mice.


I did try to get a photo of the back but she was in playful mode so this is as good as I could get.

Snowball07I was pleased with how the binding went on compared to the other quilt that I made. Having a decent machine helped massively as the new one just sailed over all the seams. The quilting is just straight lines. I was going to have a go at free motion quilting on this but changed my mind. (lost my nerve)

I may have a go on a piece of fabric, with batting and backing, rather than risk spoiling a quilt that I’ve spent a while making.

The quilt is nowhere near perfect but it’s better than the last one and I’ve learnt quite a lot while making it. I might make a wee one for Frodo next, to welcome him to his new home in a couple of months.


Snowball quilt

I’ve finished piecing the top. Hooray!


It’s not the most accurate bit of sewing as the snowballs do not all match up. I think I’m getting better though so that’s good.

It’s going into the drawer for now though as I need to get some fabric for the backing. I’ve got enough white but I’d rather use something more colourful. I’m hoping to get something at the Cotton Patch next time I pop to the library.

I’ve got plenty of other projects to keep me busy in the mean time 😉