catching up …

… my recent holiday seems like a distant memory already and I have only been back a couple of weeks!

I had a wonderful time away, staying in a charming little cottage in Shropshire in the picture-postcard village of Ashford Carbonell.


Grazer's Cottage

The trip was arranged as a way for Mum and I to spend some ‘girlie’ time together and we plan to make it a regular annual event. It was a lovely way to enjoy some good old mother/daughter bonding – we walked, we talked, we cooked (and ate too much!), we laughed and generally enjoyed each others company.

Shropshire is such a gorgeous part of England – unspoilt and uncrowded. Quaint little villages with a wealth of historical black and white buildings, charming tearooms, lots of quirky independent shops and stunning countryside.

One little tearoom we visited in Bridgnorth was a quilters dream!  Not only did they sell the most delicious home made cakes, but the whole place was adorned with stunning patchwork and quilted goodies.

Outside Number One

Inside 'Number one Tearoom'.

Lizard wallhangings

Wallhanging and cushions

Quilted hanging coneMaureen Shenton was the talented lady responsible for a lot of the quilted items in the shop and I had a lovely time chatting with her about her passion for quilting. Maureen also teaches workshops and offers a long arm quilting service.

There were lots of antique & vintage shops in the area and whilst browsing through one of them, I stumbled upon these two miniature brass keys.  I’m pretty sure that they aren’t actual antiques, but I snapped them up anyway, thinking that they will make really cute charms for home made gifts. Cute aren’t they?

Key charmsAnd, of course, no holiday would be complete without a visit to the local patchwork shop to pick up some ‘souvenirs’ 🙂

fabric findsI didn’t do any sewing whilst I was away but I have been getting back into the swing of things since getting back home.

Ever since I opened my Etsy Pattern Shop a few weeks ago, I have been very conscious of the fact that there were only two patterns listed in it (not much of a window display huh?), so I have been beavering away drafting some new ones to stock the shelves!

My ‘Crafty Creatures’ pattern is the newest addition to the shop.  Five fun little characters, filled with rice and each with their own personalised mini quilt! These little guys just love hanging around 🙂

Crafty CreaturesThere is Crafty Cat …


And Crafty Dog …

Crafty dawg

Crafty Sheep…


And Crafty Frog …


And poor old Crafty Pig thinks he’s a mug rug, bless him, … but you know what, as long as he’s happy an’ all, I’m just gonna let him be 🙂

Crafty Pig

I love having these little guys around, they just make me smile. Feels like I’m 8 years old again and living with Dr Dolittle!

I’ve also designed one more little ‘Harriet’ project in the form of a wee wallhanging with a simple patchwork border. This one shows the cheeky side to her character as you can see … perfect for a little girl’s room!

On white

And, whilst I had my scrap bag out, I found a neat little hexagon coaster tutorial over at Canoe Ridge Creations, so I ran up a set of them using some pretty scraps and linen. I am just adding a simple running stitch to the centres and tomorrow, I’ll wrap them up in tissue paper and tie them up all pretty with ribbon – a little ‘gift-ette’ for a friend I’m seeing this weekend 

twisted hexagon coasters

…and so, as the summer of 2013 draws to a close, I can feel a distinct autumnal nip in the air and I’m thinking maybe I will be needing the patchwork quilts out of the airing cupboard soon, to snuggle under when the nights draw in…

… autumn and winter have their up sides too 🙂

Happy stitching everyone!

Natalie x


14 thoughts on “catching up …

  1. Your quilting work is so beautiful Natalie, the wall hanging is gorgeous and I love all your little creatures complete with their mini quilts, so clever.

    Sadly my mum is no longer with us and I do miss her so……….it’s lovely you get to enjoy mum/daughter time, Shropshire is a county. x

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  3. Your holiday sounded idyllic and that tea room is so quaint. Your crafty creatures are such fun and I’m loving your little wall hanging with Harriet, do you give instructions on how to make the patchwork quilt as I would love to try one with a Christmas theme but haven’t done any patchwork or quilting and all the instructions I’ve seen on Youtube are for huge quilts. I presume the basic instructions are the same regardless of size but I would find it easier to follow something on a small scale.
    Good to see you back, I’ve missed reading your blog 🙂

    • Hi Kathleen, a lot of people start off in patchwork by making individual ‘blocks’ – good ones to start with are ‘rail fence’ or ‘nine patch’.

      I will be doing some small patchwork projects here on the blog over time, which may offer you some guidance, so watch this space! (I have a head full of ideas for sure, but my biggest hurdle at the moment is finding the time!!)

      So glad that you are finding some inspiration to perhaps start a little project of your own 🙂 Warm wishes Natalie x

      • Oh I’ll look forward to that, thanks. I can imagine time being against you, but there is no rush from me, I enjoy whatever you post.

  4. Hi Natalie….
    Thanks so much for sharing , how nice is the ‘Gracers Cottage’ , what envy you are going with mum (I miss mine so much ! ) well done ! Nice place to visit as well for a tea …lol
    All those creatures you made are gorgeous !

    • Like you with your Mum, Margarita, I miss not having her around the corner for a quick coffee and a chat! But Skype is a great way to keep in touch across the miles. Nothing beats spending time together though – I hope you get to see your Mum soon! Natalie x

Thank you so much for visiting and taking the time to leave a comment. I love to hear what you have to say - it really does brighten my day! Natalie x

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