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An October finish!

Fresh Sewing Day

Anyone who has seen my ridiculous FAL list for this quarter will agree that if I'm going to get anywhere with it then I need to get a bloomin' move on!  To that end, I've stuck a copy of my list on my sewing room wall (it'll go on my new magnet board, just as soon as I sort out some magnets.  And fix the board to the wall...) so that I can keep myself on track.  So far, so good and I've managed to tick three things off the list.  I'm going to blog about them separately (to make it easier to link up in January) and today is the turn of my first finish, Mr Penguin:

Mr Penguin

Mr Penguin is a large (for me!) pin cushion made from a selection of Japanese import fabric and some linen (I think it's this stuff but I'm not sure as it was a present from the fabric fairy).  I really don't like EPP but, in my opinion, it's the best technique for hand stitching these prone-to-fraying fabrics so I swallowed my intense dislike and got on with it.  (I don't know how people do lots of EPP, it's so hard on your hands and wrists!!)  Although I don't like the technique, I do like seeing the pin cushion coming together, it's quite satisfying!

Mr Penguin (who I like to think was the founding penguin of Penguin Books), is accompanied by some miniature friends:

More of Mr Penguin's friends

And a not-so-miniature surprise elephant on his bottom underneath:

A surprise elephant on the bottom!

Mr Penguin (and friends) sailed across the ocean (although, given how quickly he arrived, I think he may have cheated and flown at least part of the way) and is now living in his new home with the gorgeous (and funny) Salley.

To give you a better idea of his size, here's Mr Penguin with an unpicker (although he looks like he could be off to battle with his bayonet!):

Mr Penguin with an unpicker for scale

The other thing I've managed this month is to make and attach a scrappy border to my Christmas Cherry quilt:

Christmas Cherry with borders

The original pattern (Made In Cherry by Sarah Fielke) is for a square quilt but I prefer rectangular quilts so I've decided to add some star blocks to the top and bottom of the quilt.  I wanted some separation between the giant star and the smaller stars and a scrappy squares border seemed like the best option.  I've just started piecing the small stars (no photo, sorry) so I hope I'm going to be able to layer and tack the quilt by the end of the month, ready to start hand quilting while watching Christmas films in December.   At 78" x 78" (the squares finish at 3.25") it's already a bit big for my preferred 'taking a photo' fence, so goodness knows how I'm going to take a photo of the finished top.  Suggestions on a postcard...

A few days ago, I stripped my bed in the morning and when I went up to remake it that evening, I found that a certain someone (who had been carried up there because he made it plain he wanted to go up!) had made himself comfy among my quilt and pillows:

I hasten to add that I hadn't left them in a heap like that, Archie had rearranged them to his liking!

You're not going to make me move, are you?  I'm really comfy...

And look how cute I am, almost matching my bed your bedding...

Needless to say, he got short shrift and soon found himself looking for a different place to sleep!

Thanks for popping in, I'm off to do a spot of hand quilting (on the hexy quilt) while I watch Strictly!


  1. he's practically invisible against the white - lucky he has that black nose!

  2. I love that little penguin! And Archie is very cute in the sheets.

  3. Archie looks as if he so knows he isn't supposed to be there:-) I love penguin!

  4. Oh, love your made in cherry quilt! Mine is on the bed, it's a gorgeous design.

  5. Mr Penguin is stunning! I know what you mean about rectangular versus square quilts (says she who is in the middle of making a square Christmas quilt!)

  6. Your penguin is delightful! Archie knows a good thing when he finds one! I love the border on your cherry Christmas!

  7. Mr Penguin and Big Bottom Ellie are adorable! And I love your ever growing cherry christmas quilt! It's going to be stunning all hand quilted! Mr Archie is looking as cute as ever! Jxo

  8. Isn't Christmas Cherry nice! And Mr. Penguin is quite handsome

  9. Hi Helen and Archie! Mr. Pinguin and the elephant are Super cute! I use that shape of pin cushion and now I want to make NEW with a 'little friend' on it. Your star quilt looks gorgeus! Lovely name, too! Archie, don't you have sheets and quilts in your own bed? Funny but Nero does that same in our bed. Hanna only in her own bed. And Nero is strong so even the 'upper' matress is sometimes out of order. Have a great day! x Teje

  10. Love Mr P and I spotted that he'd arrived very quickly after your Flickr comment on posting, I'd say Supersonic delivery!!
    Look forward to seeing the extra stars o that lovely quilt.

  11. Mr Pinguin and his cohorts are so sweet! He does look like he is off to battle wonky seams everywhere with his seam ripper in that photo :) Love your Cherry quilt too, rectangles are just better bed quilts IMO. I don't think Archie was in fact asleep on your bedding either, I think he's been testing his camouflage technique and just wanted to see if you'd notice him amongst all the white!

  12. What a cute penguin, but cuter Archie!!
    I love the look of your Christmas Cherry quilt! I WANT one!!!,

  13. Hi I've found your blog via Lily's quilts small blog meet up, love your Star Quilt top :-) !!

  14. This is so cute! I hate EPP too :-/

  15. You'll be through your list before you know it! Love the penguin with his bayonet!

  16. Eep -- I love Mr. Penguin! My sewing to-do list is ridiculously long, too, but my public Q4 list is short (I have so many secret holiday gifts in the works!) Good luck on a productive November. : )

  17. Oh I do love mr penguin! You need to find yourself a good multistorey for the big quilt pics...

  18. Ooooh..... just checking in after a weekend of "no computer" and *HELLO*.... the divine Mr Penguin is featuring!
    He's so happy to be closer to the Sth Pole.
    And he's so large that he is in danger of having Polo rest her head on him .. .so, I've peppered him with pins already. No threat from Polo now!
    Cant believe you EPP'd him....I see absolutely NO stitches at all. You must have waved a wand over those fabrics.
    I am sure Isabella is correct . . plenty of wonky seams in this house! I shall get Mr P his own bayonet.

  19. Mr P is delightful and I agree about rectangular versus square quilts. It's a great idea to add the smaller stars on your Cherry Christmas quilt.

  20. Mr Penguin looks quite a character, as does Archie of course, but oh so sweet.

  21. Oh my gosh, that Penguin is just so cute!

  22. What a handsome penguin! I've never thought to EPP a pin cushion before ... the things I learn reading your blog, fabulous! Poor Archie, how can you ever be cross with that snozzle :)

  23. Love the pin cushion.
    Macros used to do that too. His favourite though was sitting on my pillow. I think they love even more the things they're not allowed to sit/sleep on

  24. love the way you are working on this blog, feeling great to see such kind of outstanding stuff.
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